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Power Pack Issue Reviews: 3 / 15

Author: Dan Wilson and Brian Alan Smith
Created:
Updated: no later than 1998

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 Issue #13 Cover

Power Pack:
Issues 11-15


Cover, Issue #13, by Anderson and Wiacek, Copyright 1985, Marvel Entertainment Group.


11: Problems. Written by Louise Simonson. Penciled by June Brigman. Inked by Bob Wiacek.

The Pack goes into action to save a kitten from alligators who live in the New York sewers. The morality of taking fire extinguishers to propel Alex around the city is also discussed. Needless to say, a slow issue, though it serves its two purposes: setting up the big Morlock/X-Men appearance next issue, as well as giving the kids a reason to wash their interdimensional costumes. As the kids find out later...it's not good to run their costumes through the washer.
Rating: Two stars

12:
Underground! Written by Louise Simonson. Penciled by June Brigman. Inked by Bob Wiacek.

The set-up in last issue leads to this issue, which is, in turn, a set-up to induce fans of "Power Pack" to pick up a copy of "The Uncanny X-Men". Yes, I know that's the opposite of what Marvel should've done. Nightcrawler and Shadowcat have nice turns in this issue, but the best moments come from a pre-X-Factor Leech, whose only friend becomes the kitten from the first issue. The sight of Leech chasing Lightspeed to get his cat back ("Mine. Please. Give. Alone.") is nothing less than tragic.
Rating: Two and 1/2 stars

13:
Fireworks. Written by Louise Simonson. Penciled by Brent Anderson. Inked by Bob Wiacek.

Technically, Louise Simonson only wrote one stand-alone, normal-size story for Power Pack, and it's this one. And it's a winner. Jack's baseball hero, "Batman" Bates, is about to have his consecutive game home-run record tied by "Mecs" star "Slugger" McGirk. The Power kids are at the game, and discover Bates' intent to blow up Shea Stadium with dynamite added to the home-run fireworks. This issue captures the spirit of baseball and the torment of Bates, stretches the kids' powers to the limit and makes Jack question his hero. A great read for any comic fan.
Rating: Four stars

14:
School Daze. Written by Louise Simonson. Penciled by June Brigman. Inked by Bob Wiacek.

This is the first issue to tackle the big difficulty of being a pre-teen superhero: how do you get out of school to fight the bad guy? You don't...at least, not without getting into trouble. This issue brings back Carmody (called the Bogey Man for the first time), and gets Julie into the principal's office for passing a cheat sheet in math class (she's innocent, of course, but can't tell on her friends). It's also educational, if you didn't know the constant rate of acceleration for a body in freefall.
Rating: Three and 1/2 stars

15:
Reckoning. Written by Louise Simonson. Penciled by June Brigman. Inked by Bob Wiacek.

Finally, Louise Simonson's corner of the Marvel Universe ties into Walt Simonson's corner ("The Mighty Thor"), with a crossover to the end of the Asgardian Wars. In one issue, we see a rematch with the Bogey Man, the Warriors Three (and a Beta Ray Bill cameo), and Alex's attempts to learn how to fly on his own. The recurring theme, though, is Julie's concern about the cheat sheet's effect on her permanent record ("...and when I grow up no one will hire me and I'll have to go on welfare and...and...")
Rating: Three and 1/2 stars

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