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Power Pack (Marvel Comics team)

Power Pack


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

Power Pack is a distinctive Marvel Comics super-hero team. It appeared in 1984 in its own book, as crafted by Louise “Weezie” Simonson and June Brigman.

The Power Pack members are children, and they are depicted in a relatively naturalistic fashion. They generally behave as kids their age would, rather than in the cartoonish and oddly stylised depictions of kids in most previous comics (like, say, the super-kids). Family dynamics are also important in the book, the Power Pack being siblings.

The stories also strike an interesting balance in being set in the wider Marvel Universe yet using some children’s books story beats and perspective.

Our Power Pack profiles are focused on the 1980s – when they were written by Ms. Simonson.


Profile

Organization

Full Name: Power Pack

Purpose: Upholding the Good

Modus Operandi: The Power Pack generally patrols the city (after school and on weekends of course) or deals with danger when they stumble across it.

Extent of operations: The team is generally limited to adventuring around or across Manhattan Island, New York City.

Bases of Operations: Their parents’ apartment.

Major Funding: Their allowance.

Known Enemies: Queen Maraud, Jakal, The Boogeyman

Known Allies: Cloak and Dagger, Spider-man, The X-Men, The Fantastic Four, The Morlocks, Thor, The Warriors Three, Wolverine.

Membership

Number of active members: 4

Number of reserve members: 2

Organizational structure: Informal, but they take their lead from Alex Power (Gee).

Known current members: Energizer, Gee, Lightspeed, Mass Master.

Reserve (former) Members: Tattletale (Franklin Richards), Kofi.

embership Requirements: None.


History

Dr. James Power was a brilliant scientist who had discovered a novel method of generating massive quantities of cheap energy. He designed a machine that, through the use of a tiny dimensional aperture, converted a small portion of matter to anti-matter and harnessed the resulting energy released by recombining the two.

Unknown to Power, his work was being observed by a benevolent alien named Aelfyre Whitemane. Whitemane (or “Whitey” for short) was a member of the Kymellian race, who had been assigned to monitor Earth communications and transmissions for some time.

Through his work, Whitey had gained a deep affection for the human species and he did not wish to see it come to harm.

The Power Pack team flying over a white background

Dr. Power’s invention greatly troubled Whitey, as his own people had made the same discovery in the distant past. Ignorant of the potential dangers of the process, the Kymellians created a similar device and activated it.

The device proved to be uncontrollable and ultimately set off an chain reaction that destroyed their homeward and decimated their people. The only members that survived the destruction were those that were off-planet.

Desperate to prevent the same holocaust from occurring on Earth, Whitey transmitted a message to his people warning them of the impending disaster and his intention of intervening. Whitey’s message was intercepted by the Z‘nrx; a race of would be reptilian conquerors who wanted nothing less than total domination of the galaxy.

The Z‘nrx (or Snarks) decided to capitalize on the situation and steal Power’s machine. Before Whitey could intervene, they shot down his intelligent Smartship, Friday, and attacked Doctor Power and his family in their home.

James and his wife, Margaret, were overwhelmed and taken prisoner by the Snark soldiers. The Power children would have been captured as well if not for Whitey’s last minute intervention. He used his own natural “sorcerous” abilities to fight off the Snarks, but not before being critically wounded in the process.

In the moments that followed next, Whitey explained to the scared children why the Snarks had come for them. In response, Alex Power informed Whitey that their father’s invention was scheduled to be tested the very next day.

Whitey took a moment to consider his options and his wounds. He knew that his wound was fatal and that he did not have the time left to intervene directly. With that knowledge in hand, Whitey decided to take desperate gamble. He used what remained of his strength to transfer his powers to the four children.

Alex gained Whitey’s ability to control gravitational attraction. Julie gained his gift of flight. Jack was granted the ability to control his very molecular density. And Katie, the baby, was given the ability to disintegrate matter and project it as highly volatile energy.

The four children, after watching Whitey pass away, utilized their wits and new found powers to: rescue their parents, defeat the Snarks, and destroy their father’s converter thereby saving the world.

New York, New York

When their beleaguered parents (whose memories of their children’s involvement in the events had been coincidentally erased) recovered, they made the decision to relocate from their home in Virginia to New York in order to get a fresh start and to allow James to find other work.

The thrill of the New York scene, and the large number of superhuman being that congregated there quickly drew the newly christened “Power Pack’s” attention, and the four youths found themselves in a variety of difficult and dangerous situations.

Despite this, the four were having the time of their lives. They encountered several famous heroes, from Spider-man to Thor. They participated in many memorable events from the Morlock Massacre to the night of Inferno (where demons literally walked the earth).

With each adventure, the four children endeared themselves more and more to the super-heroic community.

Power Pack group shot

Time passed, and the Power children eventually befriended Franklin Richards, the son of Reed and Susan Richards (better known and Mister Fantastic and the Invisible Woman of the Fantastic Four). It was during this time that Franklin’s still latent psychic abilities were beginning to emerge. He started to experience precognitive dreams which warned him of a very real danger to the Power children’s well being.

With Franklin’s help, the Power Pack was led to a young Kymellian named Kofi who had been pursed by a ruthless Snark Prince named Jakal. Kofi was the blood cousin of Whitey, and he had traveled to the earth in the attempts to protect the Power siblings from Jakal’s attempts to apprehend them and take them back to Snark World.

The Power Pack, along with both Franklin and Kofi, managed to defeat Jakal, and as a result, Franklin was offered his own costume and place on the team which he gladly accepted.

Which Power was mine again?

The team continued to have grand adventures together, until they failed to heed one of Franklin’s prophetic warnings and were finally captured by the Snarks.

They were whisked away from the Earth to Snark World where one of the clan queens, Maraud, utilized her advanced technology to steal their powers and transfer them to her recovered son, Jakal. The power proved to be too much for Jakal to handle though, and in a fit of rage he destroyed the power transfer machine and unintentionally returned the Power Pack’s superhuman gifts back to them.

However, in the process of doing so, he somehow jumbled the powers up and returned each one to a different owner. Alex gained Katie’s energy powers, Katie gained Julie’s flight powers, Jack gained Alex’s gravity powers and Julie ended up with Jack’s control over her own density.

The four returned to Earth once more, and continued their adventures. Through a highly unlikely series of events, the four siblings powers were switched yet again and Alex was once again kidnapped by Queen Maraud and replaced with a doppelgänger. The doppelgänger eventually began to mutate into a Kymellian.

The siblings eventually discovered Maraud’s duplicity, and in a star spanning adventure, managed to free their brother from Maraud’s captivity and regained their original powers upon the conclusion of the adventure.

By Bryan Gittens

Source of Character: Marvel Comics Series – Power Pack, created by Louise Simonson and June Brigman.

Writeup completed on the 14th of February, 2010.

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