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Black Apostles (Earth-616) from Marvel Team-Up Vol 1 146 0001.jpg
Black Abbot
Must retreat...tend to myself...
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Taskmaster Vol 2 1 Solicit.jpg
So you think you turned the tables, huh? Guess again. This is a little move I picked up from watching Iron Fist in action!
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Peter Parker (Earth-616) and Venom (Symbiote) (Earth-616)from Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars Vol 1 8 001.jpg
I've had just about enough of you, skull-face! My webbing oughtta keep you wrapped up nice and neat until the police get here!
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Taskmaster Vol 2 1 Solicit.jpg
I've studied your fighting style too, Spider-Man, so I can second-guess your every move--and counter it with, say, a little of Daredevil's agility!
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Appearing in "Hero Worship!"

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Synopsis for "Hero Worship!"

Spider-Man arrives at the scene of a car accident where a passenger is trapped in their car. The hero uses his enhanced strength to rip the car open, freeing the person trapped inside. Witnessing this rescue is Jack Munroe who admires Spider-Man's strength and confidence and figures the wall-crawler doesn't have a single care in the world. However, this could be the furthest thing from the truth. As Spider-Man lands in a nearby alleyway and changes into his street clothes, he is concerned about his recent spate of bad luck and the fact that Mary Jane has revealed that she knows he is really Spider-Man.[Continuity 1] Meanwhile, not far away, members of the Butcher Dogs are looking for trouble. Their leader, Deke, tells his little brother Tony to stop tagging along as he is too young to be a member of the gang. They then come upon Peter Parker and attempt to mug him.

Before they can force Peter to defend themselves, they are interrupted by Jack Munroe. This gives Peter the edge he needs to stop the mugging without revealing his spider-powers. The pair force the gang into retreat. As the Butcher Dogs flee, Tony throws a rock at Jack, in the hopes that Deke will see it and think he is worthy of being in the gang. Thanking Jack for his help, Peter Parker exchange introductions. He learns that Jack happened upon the mugging as he was cutting through the alley so he wouldn't be late for a screening of the John Wayne film Rio Bravo. As Peter has never seen it, Jack invites him to tag along to see the movie. As they wait in the theater, Peter comments about how Jack talks as though he grew up in the 50's when talking about how great the classic western is. Jack wonders how he could explain how he was alive in the 50s and is still in his prime after being cryogenically frozen for decades.[Continuity 2] A few hours later, the pair leave the theater where they are spotted by Tony who is once more upset over being left out in Butcher Dog business. Spotting the two men who fought the gang earlier, he rushes by and steals an envelope of artwork Jack Munroe was going to deliver to his artist friend, Steve Rogers.

Peter and Jack chase after the kid, but they discover that the alley forks and the pair decide to split up to try and catch the kid. Separated, the two men decide that it would be easier to catch Tony in their costumed guises. Jack changes into Nomad, while Peter changes into Spider-Man.[Continuity 3] The pair use their own unique tracking skills to locate Tony, but when the two try to nab Tony they trip each other up. When Nomad and Spider-Man argue with each other over their interference, Tony manages to slip away. Spider-Man suggests that they put aside their differences and work together to find the kid. Meanwhile, nearby, the Taskmaster has called together a number of local street gangs, including the Butcher Dogs, to offer them a chance to undergo training in his criminal academy. The gangs are interested in the offer and they are introduced to the Taskmaster's new client, the mysterious costumed figure known as Black Abbot. That's when Tony interrupts the meeting to tell his brother Deke that Spider-Man and Nomad are after him. The Taskmaster has a score to settle with the wall-crawler and tells the gang members to wait in ambush.[Continuity 4] Some of the gang members also have a score to settle with Spider-Man after he nabbed a fellow gang member.[Continuity 5]

When Spider-Man swings into the area, the Taskmaster snaps his web line with his arrows. That's when the gang members come out of hiding and try to ambush the wall-crawler. Spider-Man easily defeats his attackers. That's when the Taskmaster fires a sonic arrow at Spider-Man. The noise is unbearable, but the hero manages to snatch the arrow out of the air and break it in half.[Continuity 6] Anticipating this, the Taskmaster had also rigged the arrow with knock out gas. As Spider-Man shakes off the effects of the gas, Nomad arrives on the scene and begins fighting off Spider-Man's attackers. Watching from the sidelines, Tony is amazed to see Nomad -- someone without super-powers -- fighting off the gang members on his own. When the Taskmaster begins trouncing Nomad, Spider-Man attempts to leap to his aid. Unfortunately, Black Abbot steps in and stuns Spider-Man with a psychic bolt.

Although the heroes are defeated, the gang members are unsure if they want to get involved in super-heroes. That's when Black Abbot uses his mental powers to enthrall one of the gang members. To make an example of him, Black Abbot touches the gang member, disintegrating him to dust. The Abbot then begins enthralling Spider-Man to give him the same treatment. With moments to spare, Nomad manages to break free from the gang members restraining him. He then grabs the Taskmaster's shield and tosses it. It blocks the Abbot's deadly touch, causing his powers to feedback, disintegrating his arm. With the tide of battle turning, the two super-villains and the gang members try to make their escape. Before either Nomad or Spider-Man can go after them, one of the gang members throws a Molotov cocktail at the building where Tony has been watching the fight, putting him in danger. Tony calls out to Deke to save him, but the gang leader cowardly flees the scene not wanting to get arrested. Nomad heroically leaps inside to rescue the boy, but becomes trapped in the flames himself. Spider-Man rescues them by bracing a wall, allowing Nomad to carry the boy to safety before the burning building can collapse. In the aftermath of the battle, Tony has realized the folly of idolizing a gang. After returning Jack Munroe's stolen property, he tells Nomad that he wants to be like him. Even though the villains escaped, Spider-Man points out that they still made the difference in the life of a child.

Solicit Synopsis

His name is The Black Abbot.. . and he can mesmerize people with his voice! Can Spidey and Nomad stop him ... or the terrible Taskmaster from organizing street gangs in his behalf? It's a tall order, that's for sure!


Continuity Notes

  1. Spider-Man has been plagued with bad luck as a side effect to the Black Cat's new powers which she gained from the Kingpin in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #89. Peter will not discover this as the cause until Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #100. Mary Jane revealed that she has been aware that Peter is really Spider-Man in Amazing Spider-Man #257. She's known since the early days of Spider-Man's career, as revealed in Marvel Graphic Novel #46.
  2. Jack Munroe grew up in the 1950s, he operated as Bucky to William Burnside's Captain America of that era, as first seen in Young Men #24. The super-soldier serum they used was defective and made them paranoid, forcing the government to put them in cryogenic suspension before they grew too out of control, as revealed in Captain America #155.
  3. Jack mentions being Captain America's partner. Nomad has been a partner of the original Captain America from Captain America #282309.
  4. The Taskmaster last clashed with Spider-Man back in Marvel Team-Up #103.
  5. This would be a kid calling himself "Cool Breeze" who was nabbed by Spider-Man and the Black Widow during a murder investigation in Marvel Team-Up #140.
  6. It's interesting to note that one of the weaknesses of Spider-Man's alien costume includes sonic attacks. This is revealed in Amazing Spider-Man #258. This story was published prior and suggests that the costume isn't bothered by the sonic attack. One could assume that the sonics were powerful to cause discomfort for Spider-Man, but his costume or he broke the arrow before it could begin affecting his costume.

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