Taskmaster is a minor antagonist in Marvel's Spider-Man. He is a mysteriously well-funded mercenary with the ability to mimic the physical movements of others, making him a dangerous foe in combat. Taskmaster is voiced by Brian Bloom.
Taskmaster is hired by a secret organization to monitor and possibly recruit Spider-Man. In order to study the web-slinger, he sets up a series of challenges for him throughout New York City, ranging from facing waves of enemies to deactivating bombs on the city. After learning how he operates and replicating his powers, Taskmaster engages Spider-Man in a fight himself, but escapes shortly before defeat, stating that he "needs more data before he can fulfill his contract".
After Spider-Man takes on more of his challenges, Taskmaster ambushes him once more. Following his defeat, Taskmaster reveals his purpose before vanishing.
Appearance and personality
Taskmaster wears a militarized body suit, wields an energy blade, and dons a helmet that resembles a stylized skull. He also wears a gray hood, and the costume has darker colors overall.
Being a contract mercenary, the mysterious Taskmaster prides himself on professionalism and completing his job. He shows patience as he is not content until he has learned everything about his target before completion and adding their abilities to his already vast skillset. Given the high-grade military nature of his equipment and recon points, it’s unlikely Taskmaster is drawn by money but a desire to encounter a worthy opponent in his line of work. He appears both intrigued and enjoyed about the possibility of Spider-Man being this individual but repeatedly looks down on his capabilities. Even after he is defeated by the wall-crawler, Taskmaster casually implies that he is not worth his client's time nor money.
Abilities and equipment
Taskmaster is a highly skilled mercenary whose main ability is his incredible reflexes, also referred to as "photo-reflexive memory". It appears to be some form of a hypercognitive ability allowing him to observe, assess and then instantly replicate his target's combat maneuvers as well as develop his own countermeasures against them through anticipating their movements. By only watching Spider-Man deal with his bombs, Taskmaster notices that he favors his right leg and is able to mimic his finishers by observing him in combat.
Due to his superior training, Taskmaster is a master combatant, acrobat and marksman, which, combined with his photographic reflexes, makes him an extremely lethal opponent in battle. Almost any oncoming attack he can block. Despite his much more muscular build and heavier weight, Taskmaster is able to perfectly match the much more agile and super-powered Spider-Man's moves. According to Taskmaster, he once went toe to toe with the Avengers.
Taskmaster has access to a vast array of advanced weapons, mercenaries, and monetary funds. His primary weapon is a photogenic energy sword, and he has shown a grappling device akin to a web-shooter as well as high-powered firearms and explosives. He also employs drones which drop spy cameras across the city. He is even able to leave box-like computer stations around the city so that Spider-Man can access them to complete his challenges, whose sole purpose is so that he can observe Spider-Man in action in various situations.
Taskmaster first appeared in Avengers #195 (May 1980).