As part of “Marvel Legacy,” writer Devin Grayson and artist Marika Cresta will revive the Power Pack for one issue only, in November 1’s Power Pack #63.
Along with bringing back the long dormant kids superteam for an untold classic adventure, Power Pack #63 will check in on some of the modern day team members, including Katie Power – who still hasn’t given up the search for her brother Alex, last seen with the Richards family between realities.
Newsarama caught up with Grayson, whose last Marvel comic book work was in 2010’s Girl Comics anthology series, about how this all ties into “Legacy,” what’s been going on for the Power kids, and whether we’ll see a Power Pack #64.
Newsarama: Devin, it’s been a while since you worked for Marvel, and your return is also bringing back the Power Pack. How did Power Pack #63 come about?
Devin Grayson: It’s been less time than you may think. I wrote an entire Doctor Strange novel - The Fate of Dreams - for Marvel last year. The associate editor on that book, the mighty Sarah Brunstad, went on to helm comics and reached out to me to talk about the “Legacy” event. I was excited to work with her again and we discussed a lot of possibilities, any one of which would have been great fun to tackle. But when Power Pack came up as a possibility, I knew immediately that that was the one I wanted to do.
Nrama: I take it the Power Pack are characters that were on your radar before this?
Grayson: In 2000 artist Yvel Guichet and I released an original, creator-owned kid-super-hero-team book, Relative Heroes, through DC. After it came out, a colleague of mine was amazed to hear that I wasn’t familiar with Power Pack and rectified the oversight. I was thrilled by the family dynamics in the series, as well as delighted to find a title created by Louise Simonson, who I’ve always greatly admired. I strongly encourage anyone who hasn’t read the original series to do so; it’s really special.
Nrama: This is billed as a never-before-seen adventure, and it looks like the Power kids are still, well, kids on the cover. When does this one-shot take place?
Grayson: The story is set not long after “The Return of Power Pack," the short story by John Allison and Rosi Kämpe that was featured in Civil War II last year. Power Pack #63 is mostly about Katie, who is eleven now, but it includes two flashback stories: a retelling of a classic Power Pack escapade and one “never-before-seen-adventure” from their past. I wanted to make sure that readers new to the characters got the chance to see the team in all of its original glory, but I also wanted to explore the status quo.
Nrama: What’s the Power Pack going up against in this story?
Grayson: In the flashback stories, they’re fighting an old nemesis, Bogeyman. In current time, the story’s really about Katie missing her brother, Alex, and feeling hopeless about the possibility of getting in touch with him.
Nrama: Will we get to check in with any of the modern day Power kids? As you alluded to, the last time we saw Alex, he was in between universes with the Richards Family...
Grayson: Right. Alex’s whereabouts have been somewhat shrouded in mystery. He was last seen alongside the Fantastic Four, universe building with the Future Foundation. It doesn’t seem like the Richards family left any kind of interdimensional call-forwarding plan in place, so many people have given up on ever seeing them again. But if you read Marvel Legacy #1, you know they’re still out there - at least Franklin and Valeria. And so does Katie Power; though she has no proof, and no way to reach him or confirm that he’s okay, she knows Alex is still alive.
Nrama: The idea of “Legacy” obviously comes across through the revival of this long dormant title, but how does it play into the story within?
Grayson: Katie’s trying to figure out how to tell her own story; how to shape her past in a way that makes sense to her - given her current reality - and that might make sense to others. But when you’re part of a close-knit family or a cohesive team it can sometimes be difficult to work out how, where or even if your own narrative diverts from the legacy of the group as a whole, not to mention what you’re supposed to do with yourself when that unit is fractured.
Nrama: You’re working with Marika Cresta, who is a relatively new talent but whose style obviously lends itself to this kind of classic revival. What’s your favorite thing she drew for Power Pack #63?
Grayson: I love every page. She just nailed it. Her work is so expressive and lyrical and she pays so much attention to the “acting”—how characters are posed and what they communicate through their posture and bearing. We have one original character in the story, Katie’s English teacher, and Marika made her so convincingly alive that I feel like I can smell the perfume she's wearing.
I also shared this panel on Twitter earlier. It makes you care about and worry for Katie without in any way lessening her strength or agency:
Nrama: What are the chances we might see a Power Pack #64? Or that you might be involved the next time we see these characters?
Grayson: I wish I knew. I’m afraid it’s too early to say.
What I will say is that I’d be happy to work with them, or to follow their ongoing adventures, again and that I think there’s absolutely room for them in the Marvel Universe.
Nrama: What can you tell us about Power Pack #63 that nobody knows yet?
Grayson: Up until page eight, Katie’s getting a "C" in English class.