Up to the Task?
Writer: Jed MacKay
Artist: Alessandro Vitti
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: March 24, 2021
I have enjoyed this mini as a fun distraction with all of this King in Black nonsense taking over the Marvel line these days. Jed MacKay will not blow minds here, but I don’t think that’s what he’s trying to do. So, did he stick the landing? Let’s find out…
The issue opens with Tony and Nick Fury driving home after returning from Wakanda, and I want these two to continue in a Lethal Weapon-style buddy book. Their passive-aggressive relationship is something I will miss now that it’s over.
Now, Jed Mackay has given readers a good look at the goofy side of Taskmaster, but here we get the smarts as well. While Nick Fury has been going at all of this with a spy’s brain, Tony starts thinking like a bad guy and realizes someone has been playing them from the get-go. But who could it be? I guessed what was going on here, and I am a big dummy, so I’m sure others did as well. It doesn’t ruin everything, but it sets up a not-so-great ending to a good series.
There are more problems than just that in this finale. We have been waiting for the big Taskmaster/Black Widow fight, and while it’s longer than before, it’s a bit lackluster. I wanted to see Taskmaster use some bigger and better moves than before, but this is a lesser repeat. There is still some fun to be had, and I laughed out loud watching Taskmaster run like the wind, but I needed a little more.
The ending happens very quickly and serves to put Taskmaster on the bad guy side again. I know it’s silly to think Taskmaster could come out of this a (kind of) good guy, but a guy can hope, right? I understand that this series was more about the journey than the destination, but sticking the landing would have elevated this book even more. As it is, things felt rushed and forced by the end, and that’s a shame.
Overall, I liked this series enough to suggest to anyone looking for an inoffensive good time. It probably won’t be your favorite story of all-time, but it’s worth the read. It looks good throughout and gives you a good Taskmaster and Nick Fury to enjoy.
Taskmaster #5 ends Jed Mackay’s story, and while the ending is a bit abrupt and forced, it didn’t ruin the mini-series for me. It also didn’t elevate it, but I can still recommend it for the excellent art and the fun journey that would have spawned a Lethal Weapon-like team-up book in a perfect world.