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Taskmaster/USAgent

Minimates
by yo go re

Created as an Avengers foe, Taskmaster Taskmaster has a really clever set of powers. Taskmaster is an almost unbeatable mercenary thanks to his photograohic reflexes' ability to mimic the fighting styles of Wolverine, Bullseye, Captain America and others. Of course, these powers sometimes cause problems, like the time he perfectly duplicated an Olympic high-dive, but forgot that he'd never learned how to swim. Dumbass.

Since Taskmaster equips himself with copies of other heroes' weapons, it makes sense that most of the Minimate's accessories are re-used, too. He has Doctor Doom's cape, Captain America's gloves, Ultimate Wolverine's belt, Invisible Woman's shield (the same mold, though his obviously isn't clear), Punisher's pistol, he got it all at a yardsale knife and holsters, and Blade's sword and sheath. Then, bucking the trend, he also comes with a bow and arrow that have never been seen before: they're not re-used from Green Arrow or any of the LotR Minimates. Maybe they're going to be used with the upcoming Hawkeye Minimate, but for now they're new and original. Taskmaster is absolutely loaded with accessories.

Bring me He-Man! And for as many accessories as the little guy has, there's even more detail that's just painted on. The edges between the colors are crisp, but all the costume details on his chest are handled by paint apps. The bandolier is even a lighter shade of orange than the armor behind it, and the armor's straps continue on the sides of the figure, under his armpits. Taskmaste's head block is black, with yellow eyes and the white mouth area painted on. Overall, this is a very sharp-looking Minimate, and definitely one of the best ever released.

USAgent The second Minimate in this set is one of Taskmaster's most successful trainees, which really goes to show you just how poor a teacher he is. A former Captain America himself, John Walker possesses superhuman strength and endurance which he uses to fights [sic] for the US government as USAgent. When Steve Rogers gave up his Captain America identity rather than directly serve a corrupt government, he donned a black costume; when he reclaimed the identity, he gave the new suit to his replacement, and USAgent was born.

This figure is the modern USAgent, see the armor? which means a few small costume changes, but he's still basically a repainted Captain America - though isn't that the way it should be? He uses the winged headpiece we've seen on all the Caps so far, and the big flared gloves. And of course, he also has his shield, and an extra un-gloved hand so he can "wear" the shield properly. So what sets this costume apart from the classic version?

The shield is red and black with a white star, hat hair rather than the original, star-free red, white and black bullseye. His boots are detailed with laces and seams (a very impressive job at this size), and he's wearing a red utility belt that originally came with the Blade Minimate. USAgent's costume is actually a dark grey, rather than black, which allows the scales painted on his torso and shoulders to show up. When you remove his mask, you'll see his close-cropped blond hair painted on his head.

Taskmaster and USAgent really don't interact a lot in the comics, though they have both recently been showing up in the wake of Civil War - Taskmaster is training the Initiative's new recruits at Camp Hammond, while USAgent ended up in Canada as part of Omega Flight. Yeah, yeah, I know - it's supposed to be the spirit of international cooperation or something. Or maybe just an admission that Canada is little more than the 51st state.


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