Ahead of the upcoming Black Widow feature film, Taskmaster is getting his own Marvel comics series! Taskmaster #1 by Jed MacKay and Alessandro Vitti, will center on the highly adaptable mercenary on the run from the law and wanted for the murder of SHIELD agent Maria Hill. Taskmaster must now clear his name before he’s hunted down by heroes and spies alike.
Details are pretty scarce at this point, but the solicitations mention Taskmaster will tangle with the greatest spies in the world as he struggles to prove his (relative) innocence in the murder of Maria Hill. This will prove a difficult task, as someone like Maria Hill has plenty of friends, including Agent Coulson pictured on the cover and several other major espionage players – nearly all of whom will want to avenge their friend’s death by serving up Taskmaster’s skull on a platter.
This isn’t the first time that Taskmaster has been in the limelight. He had appeared as something of a frenemy to Deadpool several times over the years. After Civil War, Taskmaster was hired as a drill instructor for the Initiative, responsible for overseeing and whipping prospective superheroes into shape, a job he was largely successful at (with the exception of the superhero Butterball). Since then, Taskmaster has largely returned to mercenary work, mostly for less than savory employers like HYDRA and Kraven the Hunter.
Putting Taskmaster on a collision course with the espionage community creates an interesting conflict for the mercenary. While there will likely be plenty of Avengers eager to, well, avenge Hill, Taskmaster possesses the ability to imitate their fighting styles, allowing him to easily counter whatever they throw at him. But how will Taskmaster fare against talented spies like Phil Coulson, who make up for their lack of fighting skills with a variety of resources and assets, as well as the intelligence to use these capabilities to make Taskmaster’s life a living nightmare.
Another surprising element of the announcement is the supposed murder of Maria Hill, who has been a major player in Marvel since the events leading up to Civil War. Taskmaster must figure out who killed Hill if she’s even truly dead at all. Either way, this storyline could lead Taskmaster to once again work alongside the heroes more regularly – if he is successful in clearing his name and bringing the real perpetrators to justice. Regardless, Taskmaster has his work cut out for him in this explosive new series, coming in April 2020.
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