Today’s new guide for Patrons of Crushing Krisis was actually the guide that caused me to start the avalanche of smaller guides to fill in the gaps in my Marvel Legacy era page! It’s for a group of characters who have always been curiously X-Men adjacent, despite definitely not being mutants…
Power Pack’s long-running association with the X-Men is down to their creator, Louise Simonson.
Simonson was coming off years as an editor, and heading into several years of writing X-Factor and, later, a portion of New Mutants. Not only that, but she frequently pulled Power Pack into the X-Men’s 1980s line events – they tied in to Mutant Massacre (where they faced Sabreooth), Fall of the Mutants, and Inferno!
That’s the only tie the four siblings of the Power family had to Marvel’s mutants. They got their powers not through their genes, but in the style of Green Lantern – via an alien who was part of an intergalactic struggle dying at their feet on Earth.
Power Pack was one of the only Marvel titles to be explicitly in-continuity and purposefully written with early grade readers in mind. That made them popular both with kids and adults in the 80s, but it left them without an audience in the 90s as comics shifted towards teens and speculators.
Not only were Power Pack without an ongoing title, but they made few appearances aside from Alex Power’s stint with New Warriors through their title’s cancellation.
Power Pack haven’t had much of an impact since then as a team, but Alex and his sister Julie Power grew old enough to hang out with Marvel’s other super-powered teens, and became supporting characters in Fantastic Four and Runaways, respectively.
Meanwhile, in 2005 Marvel relaunched Power Pack in a string of limited series aimed at middle-grade readers. Their eleven four issue series stretched over five years – and a 44-issue ongoing title is nothing to sneeze at in the 00s.
Marvel feinted at reviving Power Pack for Marvel Legacy with a special 63rd issue of their original series, but it was just a flashback tale told by Julie Power to her school teacher.
With Alex Power returning to reality in Fantastic Four (2018) #2 and Marvel’s middle-grade titles like Moon Girl and Squirrel Girl booming, will we see the full team reassembled sometime soon?
Want access to this guide today? It’s available in exchange for covering $1.99 a month of CK’s hosting expenses. Those “Pledgeonaut” Patrons now have access to 26 exclusive guides – more than one guide per dollar of pledging per year at the Pledgeonauts level!
Marvel Guides: Alpha Flight, Ant-Man & Giant-Man, Champions, Darkhawk, Dazzler, Gwenpool, Legion, Marvel Era: Marvel Legacy, Moon Boy / Moon Girl & Devil Dinosaur, Ms. Marvel: Kamala Khan, Power Pack, Scarlet Witch, Sentry, Silk, Spider-Gwen, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Venom