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Power Pack Issue Reviews: 12 / 15

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

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 Issue #50 Cover

Power Pack:
Issues 50-52

Cover, Issue #50, by Bogdanove and Barta, Copyright 1989, Marvel Entertainment Group.

50: "Friday's Children". Written by Jon Bogdanove. Penciled by Tod Smith. Inked by Mike Manley and Al Williamson.

The worst writing tendencies of Bogdanove come to the forefront in this issue, the long-awaited look at the Kymellian homeworld. First, the environmentalism: nuclear reactors are presented as weapons of self-destruction, and the Kymellians' artificial h omeworld is something like a giant mall in space. Second, the referencing: the weapon to be used by Queen Mother Maraud to destroy the Kymellians is a copy of the conical planet-destroyer from the classic Star Trek episode, "The Doomsday Machine". It would be cute as a joke (and, on first appearance, Bogdanove treats it as such) but it seems lame as a major plot device. Also, the Kymellian's greatest superhero team, Force 4, has three male members: genius Ydrai (pronounced Eed-ray); fire-controller Onijay (pronounced Ohnny-jay); and strongman Enbe (pronounced En-bay). If you know your Pig Latin and your Fantastic Four, you get the joke.

Third, the over-writing: Bogdanove has been seen to almost overwhelm the art with dialogue and subtext, and this issue is no exception. Finally, all these put together inspire Bogdanove to do a retcon (retroactive continuity: change the past) of the Kymellian race. Now, Aelfyre Whitemane is not just a scientist studying Earth, with relatively untrained powers; he is the youngest and last of the Kymellian Sorcerers. There is no real plot here, just the beginning of the host of problems that destroy the book.
Rating: Two stars

The Numinus. Written by Jon Bogdanove. Penciled by Gray Morrow. Inker unknown, presumably Morrow.

This issue introduces the conceptual entity, the Numinus. That's right: in the Marvel Universe, they have a conceptual entity for Death, ones for Eternity and Infinity, and ones for Chaos and Order. The Numinus is the conceptual entity in charge of losing your car keys. She's as big as Galactus, she has a peace sign on her chest, and she looks like Whoopi Goldberg. I am not making any of this up...though, for the sake of this entire series, I wish I were. Just a terrible, terrible issue.
Rating: One-half star

...the Bitter End! Written by Jon Bogdanove. Penciled by Mike Manley. Inked by Al Williamson.

An inferior sequel to issue 25, where the kids first get their powers switched around. This time, Jack, an 8-9 year old, effectively turns into Wolverine when he gets the energy/Destroyer power. The Kymellians lose their artificial world, and the female member of Force 4 assumes the full powers of the Matriarch, thereby teleporting every living everything aboard the giant Kymellian satellite onto a new planet, to begin to reclaim their old, natural way of life. It turns out that that was the reason the Numinus showed up: she may just be in charge of shaking up the way people look at life, but she can also manipulate time and cause everyone to see the Right Path. The Numinus is, understandably, never seen again.
Rating: One star

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