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Snark Free Corner for 7/23

by  in Comic News Comment
Snark Free Corner for 7/23

Welcome to the latest installment of your breath of snark free air!

Enjoy!

FUN RUN

This week’s fun run is Louise Simonson’s run on Power Pack.

Simonson worked on Power Pack for about 40 issues, with two main artists, June Brigman and Jon Bogdanove.

With the Power family, a group of four young siblings who gain superpowers via a visiting alien, Simonson created such three-dimensional characters that the characters almost seemed to write themselves.

Simonson tried to make the characters as realistic as possible, but without sacrificing engaging stories (as might be the danger if you strive for realism).

As the series went on, although it did well critically, sales was never a strong suit of the book. Luckily, in one of the nicest shows of support you will see, other Marvel creators began to guest-star Power Pack in their comics, including one particularly good issue of Uncanny X-Men where Katie Power “teams up” with Wolverine in a brilliant match-up, as Katie needs Wolverine’s help to survive a brutal attack by the Reavers and Lady Deathstrike, but at the same time, Wolverine needs KATIE to help survive the attack with his psyche intact, as his animal instincts were beginning to overpower him. A nice job by Claremont, but the fact that Katie worked so well in the role is a nod to a job well done by Louise Simonson.

As additional sales were reached for, guest stars began to proliferate the book, but Simonson still managed for the most part to make the guest-appearances appear natural, and a bit off-beat (like the Powers inviting Wolverine, Kitty Pryde and Beta Ray Bill to Thanksgiving supper).

The original artist, June Brigman, was masterful with facial expressions (she is now doing a bang-up job on the Brena Starr comic strip). She was followed by Jon Bogdanove, who had a bit more of an action style, but still had a good feel for the characters (he followed Simonson as the book’s writer).

Together they worked on the most action-packed Power Pack arc, as they got caught up in a battle on an alien world, facing off against the bad guy aliens (I would tell you the name of their race, but I’m afraid this installment is free of them ;)) who they initially fought in the first issue, where a good guy alien gave them their powers (and their own talking robot ship, Friday!!).

At the end of the storyline, Simonson had the clever idea of switching everyone’s powers, and really, the switch made a lot more sense than the original mix of powers (although the original mix has a great nostalgic tug for me – and it’s the one they use in Power Pack comics today).

Alex (the oldest) originally had gravity powers.
Julie (the second-oldest) originally had flight powers (when she flew at high speeds, she had a rainbow effect behind her)
Jack (the second-youngest) originally had the power to control his mass (he count turn into mist, etc).
Katie (the youngest) originally had energy powers, and she could disintegrate matter and then turn that matter into energy blasts

The oddity of having a cute little girl have such destructive powers was a clever idea, but when the switch happened, Alex got the powers, and it probably made more sense to have such destructive powers in the hands of an older child.
Katie got the fun rainbow flying powers.
Jack got Alex’s old gravity powers and Julie got Jack’s old mass-control powers.

In any event, Simonson left the book soon after (after about ten issues or so where she’d write one, then there would be a fill-in, etc.), and she left behind a legacy of a great group of characters.

A legacy that Marc Sumerak and Fred Van Lente are living up to today with their work on the series of Power Pack mini-series that Marvel has been putting out the last year or so.

COVER THEME GAME

As always, here is the game. I show three covers. They all have something in common, whether it be a character, a trait all three characters share, locale, creator, SOMEthing. And it isn’t something obvious like “They all have prices!” “They all have logos!” “They all feature a man!” etc.

In addition, please note that you must have some familiarity with comic book history to correctly guess these comics. You cannot guess the connective theme just by looking at the covers solely, you must have some knowledge beyond just the covers.

Good luck! A cool point to the first person to figure it out!

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SNARK FREE CHALLENGE

Which of the four Robins (Dick, Jason, Tim and Stephanie) was the worst?

THE COVER GAME

This week’s game is as follows…

Find me a cover from either Superman (either volumes), Action Comics, Adventures of Superman or Superman: Man of Steel that features both Superman AND Clark Kent on it!

It doesn’t count if Clark and/or Superman are floating heads (or in the corner box), and just to be difficult, it also doesn’t count if the cover is a shot of Superman changing from/into Clark Kent.

For example (and you can’t use this one!), this Superman cover is the type I’m looking for…

Remember, only one cover per commenter!

Good luck!

WHO IS IT?

Remember, tell me who it is and what number clue gave it away!

1. This character is an alien.
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2. This character is from Baaltar IV.
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3. This character died in one of the lead ups to Infinite Crisis.
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4. This character debuted in the pages of Valor.
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5. This character was a Darkstar.

Who is it?

Well, that’s it for this installment of Snark Free Corner.

Hope you had fun!

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