Mary Talbot was a Christian missionary who was taken aboard the Contender to convert the natives of Skull Island by James Copland in the year 1912. She debuted in the 2017 Kong of Skull Island graphic novel Kong: Gods of Skull Island.
After several disastrous missions trips to Papua, Yucatan, and Quang Bah, the Contender sailed for an uncharted island west of Sumatra. When they reached the beach, her companion James Copland noticed that the people were scarecrows, similar to ones he had seen before, meant to scare off intruders. These scarecrows however, were not geared for attack, but just seemed to be engaging in daily behaviors like conversation and carrying water. Just as he was remarking this to the group, one grabbed him. It turned out to be a small, disfigured boy, whom their companion Mister Hodge attempted to attack before being stopped by Mary and Copland. James offered him an apple, while their interpreter, Mr. Patel told them that the boy seemed to be telling them they shouldn't have come. The man's father struck the boy, and a Shaman named Bar-Atu came from the crowd and confronted them before a woman who identified herself as the Storyteller came to call for them to cease their hostility.
The following morning, Mary got to know more about the boy, whose name was Kupak, and some of the other islanders. Already, she began to teach them Christianity, and she noted to James that the concept of a forgiving god was foreign to them, although Kupak was rather fond of the idea. In turn, she learned from Kupak that their god was a giant who lived in a mountain named Kong. That night, Mr. Patel told them his findings on the culture. Half of the islanders followed the Storyteller, and the other half followed Bar-Atu and his Church of Kong. The followers of Kong smoked a black vine that grew on the island's great wall and told tales of the Kong. James told Mary not to try whatever it was, while taking a smoke himself. Mary fell asleep outside of the Church of Kong.
One month later, James oversaw the construction of a Christian Church after the destruction of their previous attempt, but all the while the third ship that was supposed to come after them was three weeks late. However, James heard news that their Captain, Mister Riley, was still taking missions to search for the other boat, despite the Contender's value at their only means of leaving. Riley revealed that he had found a cove a few miles North, which was the only safe place the other ship could have landed. Mary agreed with Riley and took James away to talk. She had noticed his horrible cough, and asked if that was the reason he refused to leave the island. Mary expressed her worries that the Tagatu were using them, and that when their gifts ran out, so would their safety among them. She feared that James' fanaticism was not worth the minimal resources they had found on the island. James however, reflected on the Contender's past failures, where the civilizations they had left behind had taken to the ideas of other civilizations just as easily as they had taken to their's. James felt that Skull Island was his last chance at building a legacy for himself. Mary understood James' feelings, but tried to make him understand that it was a lost cause. She then shared plans to leave the island with Kupak, whom she felt was too sweet and bright to be safe on the island. James stubbornly refused to let the Contender go, and told Mary that she could take the next ship when it came. Mary angrily tolh him that the next ship was never coming, and James told her to quit if she wanted, but maintained that he would never leave the island.
Later, James sent Kupak to preach Christianity in the Church of Kong, which lead to him being publicly beaten by his father. Mary was furious and demanded to take the ship, crew, and Kupak and leave the island, and send a ship back for him if he wanted. James sarcastically remarked that Kupak had only been displaying the courage of his faith. However, that night Mary, James, Kupak, and the rest of the crew were banished to the other side of the wall. Copland awoke with a start, and Mary cut his bonds and told him that because of his stunt with Kupak, their camp had been burned and they were banished. However, two crewmen managed to escape with the Contender. She began to berate James for his death-wish, but a serpentine creature came hissing out of the jungle. Luckily Hodge was able to scare them off with their guns, which he had gotten from their tent while the others were being gathered up. Mister Patel then told them that the Storyteller had told him that the only place the predators did not hunt was on Skull Mountain, for that was Kong's domain. The party headed North, and passed a pit of bones of Spanish Conquistadors. As they made their way through the jungle, they were attacked by everything from the animals to the plants. The group sought shelter in a cave, where they found the corpse of one of their crewmen from the lost ship, and its captain, who had gone mad and lived in a colony of odd birds. After fleeing the cave, they cross a Kong graveyard, and through the surrounding fog, Mary spotted the peak of Skull Mountain. But at that point, odd creatures Mr. Patel dubbed Harpies, began to sing, and an enormous dinosaur attacked.
However, the fabled Kong came to their rescue and tore the beast's top jaw from its body before turning on the humans. He then leaped to attack the Contender crewmen, and killed most of them, including Mister Hodge. After the battle, he saw James and Mary on the ground. He poked at Mary and smelled her before picking her up and walking off with her toward Skull Mountain. James shor at Kong, but to no avail. Mary looked back at him from the giant's great fist.
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