August 25th, 2017

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Jurassic Jumble – Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog)

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Back in the 1980s, Alex, Julie, Jack, and Katie fought aliens, befriended mutants, and discovered how to be heroes as one of Marvels first ever preteen superhero crews, POWER PACK. After 62 issues, the series came to a conclusion in 1991, though the characters would go on to appear in titles such as AVENGERS ACADEMY and FANTASTIC FOUR AND POWER PACK.

On November 1, Marvel Legacy heralds the super siblings return in a special one-shot POWER PACK #63 by writer Devin Grayson and artist Marika Cresta!

Devin filled us in on what we can expect from the return of the Pack. What attracted you to working on POWER PACK? Were you a fan of the original run?

Devin Grayson: A colleague introduced me to Power Pack in 2000, after my book about a young super hero team, Relative Heroes, came out. I was thrilled to discover another family teamnot to mention a title created by [series writer] Louise Simonson, who I greatly admire. I immediately fell in love with June Brigmans expressive art and the authenticity Louise brought to the young characters. Each of the four kids is really unique, and, once youve met them, its impossible not to start caring about their story. When does POWER PACK #63 take place?

Devin Grayson: My story is actually set a few months after The Return of Power Pack, the short story by [writer] John Allison and [artist] Rosi Kmpe that was featured in CIVIL WAR II: CHOOSING SIDES last year. So we can call that present dayas long as we acknowledge how aging works in comics (very slowly). 30 of our years have ended up being about six of theirs, meaning that Julies in college at Empire State University and Katie and Jack are still living at home. Alexs whereabouts are, of course, something of a mystery, and thats an issue my story takes on thematically. Any confusion you may feel about where he is pales in comparison to his own familys concern.

I also make use of flashbacks in the story, though, so new readers will be able to see the team in all of its original gloryand long-time readers will hopefully experience a nostalgic thrill. I know that many of us, myself included, are excited to see how these kids will age, but thats the kind of thing I think we would need to see develop on stage in a series. In a one-shot like this, though theres a temptation to jump ahead, I think it works best to underscore and explore the status quo. What are the Powers up to in your new story? Who might they be facing off against?

Devin Grayson: This story focuses on Katie, who is facing the ultimate nemesis of American 11-year-olds: school work. Though shes technically too old now to be afraid of the proverbial bogeyman, Katie Power has direct experience with another Bogeymansome of us might remember him as her dads old boss, Mr. Carmody. There are a few elements that made the original series so uniquetheir family dynamic, the Kymellian and the Snarks.

Devin Grayson: We dont actually see the Kymellians or the Snarks in this issue, though there are a few Easter Eggs for attentive fans.

The story, though, is very much about familial relationships, which shouldnt surprise anyone with even a passing familiarity with my work. I dont think I could have avoided that theme if I tried. Whats it like working with Marika Cresta on this one-shot?

Devin Grayson: I feel so lucky to have Marika on board for this! Shes incredibly excited to be doing her first work for Marvel. For those of you unfamiliar with her, Marika studied with Sara Pichelli and was discovered by one of Marvels talent scouts in Italy during a portfolio review at Lucca Comics & Gamesa comic book and gaming convention in Tuscanyin 2016.

Shes a phenomenal new talent, and although Im sure theres nothing she cant do, she has a particular gift for capturing the energy and sensitivity of younger characters. Shes also incredible with body language and beautiful, detailed backgrounds. I cant wait to see the story come to life in her hands! Finally, of the four siblings, did any end up being your favorite to write? Who was the most challenging to create?

Devin Grayson: Personally, I relate most strongly to Julieher academic leanings, her sexuality, and her status as an elder sibling all make her extremely accessible to me. But this story is really about Katie and Alextheir relationship.

Both Katie and Jack, as athletic younger siblings who tend be more impulsive than their older brother and sister, were more challenging for me. They both have such distinct voices though, they dont end up being difficult to write; theyre the kind of characters that huff at you in frustration if you get them wrong and dont stop pestering you until you fix whatever displeased them.

These characters that Louise created are so individuated and so aliveI cant imagine new readers not being excited to meet them. And I hope their existing fans enjoy spending time with them again as much as I did!

Devin Grayson and artist Marika Crestas POWER PACK #63 awakens on November 1!

See more here:
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Jurassic Jumble – Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog)

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