Power Pack (1st series) #42

Issue Date: 
December 1988
Story Title: 
Revenge of the Bogeyman, part 1: Childhood’s End

Jon Bogdanove (writer & penciler), Stan Drake & Don Hudson (inkers), Joe Rosen (letterer), Glynis Oliver (colorist), Carl Potts (editor), Tom DeFalco (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

In Limbo, Douglas Carmody, the Bogeyman, is captured by demons and taunted by N’astirh, who devours the villain, believing he can help him in his conquest of Earth, N’astirh transforms the hateful man. New York has become a polluted hellhole, with pollution and filth covering the city, and the people who live there. Jim Power trudges home through the smog because the public transport is stuck in traffic jams. He is worried about his family, and when he finally arrives at the Power apartment, finds his wife, Margaret, obsessively cleaning - but getting nowhere. All four of the Power children are feeling very poorly with fever. Jim tries to get Margaret to rest, and decides a bath might help cool Katie, who has the worst fever of the children. But when he turns the faucet on, raw sewage bursts from it. On a clogged Bronx expressway, thugs steal money and drugs from those stuck in the cars, until one such thug finds himself the victim of a horrid creature who has emerged from the shadows. This creature hoes wild and starts to slay the other thugs. The creature is the Bogeyman, transformed by N’astirh, and with a disdain for the corrupt and wasteful. A large man inside one of the cars encourages the Bogeyman as he deals to the thugs - but the Bogeyman turns his attention on the large man and steals his clothes as he reveals his mutated new appearance. The Power children are still trying to keep cool in the heatwave, and Alex recalls how they healed themselves once before when Pestilence touched them. As night falls, the New Mutants emerge from a portal, along with a horde of demons and battle rages. Jim and Margaret have stopped the broken faucet in the bathroom and turn their attention to finding another way to cool their children down. A radio report gives a very detailed account of what is transpiring throughout the city. Margaret hears a thud in one o the children’s rooms and finds Alex has fallen out of his bunk bed. She helps him to the bathroom, where they discover a revolting mold has spread over the entire bathroom. Margaret flees in disgust, while Alex bravely uses his powers to disintegrate the mold - but it soon grows back before his very eyes. Margaret races to find Jim and tells him that they have to get the kids out of here. The radio suddenly goes crazy, as if demonically possessed. Margaret destroys it with a rolling pin. Katie screams, dreaming about the Bogeyman. Julie tries to calm her younger sister, when the Bogeyman seemingly appears from under her bed and grabs her. Margaret and Jim start to collect their children, deciding that they are going to try to get to their Aunt Pauline’s. But as they enter the elevator, it stops between floors, and the Bogeyman bursts through the elevator roof. He grabs Margaret and Jim, and tells them that their children are mutant monsters. The Power children huddle and try to heal themselves, while Margaret is in disbelief about her children. The Bogeyman reiterates that they are mutants, and Power Pack appear healed shortly after, and ready to face the horrid Bogeyman!

Full Summary: 

A man in a tattered costume clings to the jagged wall of realm now of this world. His name is Douglas Carmody a.k.a. The Bogeyman, an ex-business man who for the past year has had only one aim in life - to destroy four children whose only crime was to be mistaken for mutants. Douglas Carmody is a bigot, one of that particular breed of human that hates and fears any person, group or thing that smacks of being different - in this case, mutantkind - people whose radical genetic structure gives them unusual abilities. The fact that the four Power children are not genuine mutants is no deterrent to Carmody, because bigotry is a blind obsession. Portrait of a blind man, then - a man consumed by hatred, who, until moments ago, thought he was in reach of his goal - but now finds himself plunging in slow motion through Limbo, an alternate dimension not only of time and space, but of horror - a place that for Douglas Carmody could well prove far worse than any “Twilight Zone”.

‘GNAHGG!’ Carmody cries out as he plunges towards a horde of demons reaching out for him. The remainder of his costume and mask falls away, while the horse-faced demon called N’astirh stands on a ridge nearby and oversees the new arrival. ‘Douglas - how nice of you to come! So glad I could be here for your arrival!’ N’astirh exclaims. ‘Come to us far morsel!’ one of the lesser demons cries out. ‘I take it this means you shall be unable to complete our bargain to deliver to me the mutant earthling human-children I wish to purchase? Yes? We must make alternate arrangements’. One of the lesser demons grabs Carmody and looms over him, ‘The smell! This can’t be real!’ Carmody gasps. ‘Far morsel very ugly! Tastes good and greasy, I think…’ the demon grins. Fire twists around N’astirh as he moves over to Carmody, ‘Aren’t you listening to me?’ the demon lord asks. N’astirh reminds Carmody who he is, and informs him ‘You are in my wolrd now’.

N’astirh remarks that Carmody seems a bit disorientated, and suggests they refresh his memory. ‘Let’s look back to when you first met these four children you call Power Pack…funny how no one else seemed to realize what a “threat” they were - you had to fight them all by yourself!’ N’astirh adds that eve when Power Pack allied themselves with three warriors from Asgard, Carmody finally found an ally in the form of the organization known as the Right, only Power Pack had allies too - the accursed New Mutants, and their sorceress, Illyana Rasputin - cast him into Limbo. N’astirh reveals to Carmody that this was once her domain, but that she is losing her power over the demons, and Limbo is ruled by others now. ‘And someday soon - it may be mine!’ he boasts, picking the fat, naked Carmody up into the air, N’astirh licks his face. ‘In some small way, you may yet serve to aid me in my schemes - by joining my minions!’ N’astirh adds, revealing that he has the power to change Carmody into one of them. ‘It’s simply a matter of… chewing away anything human…!’ N’astirh declares, putting his mouth around Carmody’s body, Carmody screams, and N’astirh remarks that Carmody does taste rather greasy!

The real world, where in New York, it is a little early for such a heat wave, when the air settles like a hot blanket of ash-caked suet, transforming New York into a smudge-pot of smoke, human sweat and sewage - a city choking, drowning in a morass of its own effluvia. Cars are congested in every street. Sacks of garbage line the sidewalks. Smog sits heavy in the air. Humans lumber about in the filth. Just down the hill from Columbia University, where Harlem meets the Upper West Side, the streets smolder in the muffling shadow of the irt. Even the sounds of traffic are bent and stifled into vague and distant strains of sharps and flats. Heaps of gas-bloated green plastic bags, leaking the sticky fermented juices of a week’s uncollected garbage, make a single-file walled obstacle course of the sidewalk, vile black-water sluices underfoot from some ignored, broken sewer line. Amidst the noxious refuse, people perch on brownstone stoops in vain attempts to escape entombment in oven-hot buildings.

Other people continue to file through the streets in a lurching, leaden, slow-motion ballet, some frantically looking for escape, others for violent diversion and some, just to go home. For an exhausted Professor Jim Power, it is an effort to press through the sooty, gelatinous air. Breathing it is like breathing dirty motor oil. The airborne particulate pollution clings to his sodden, knotted clothing, silting into the pores of his skin, it burns his cheeks, eyes and lungs like an acid sandstorm. Flies buzz around Jim’s head. It has been a bad week - funding cutbacks at the National Science Foundation threaten his research grant, the cooling system in his Columbia lab has been out all week, and the unrelenting heat caused computer failure and destroyed two months’ work. Yet, his most immediate concern is for his family. He continues walking the vile streets, and thinks to himself that it is ninety percent humidity, and one hundred and ten degrees in the shade, and his poor kids have chosen this weather to come down with fever. He notices a bus, the only one he has seen, gut it is running Uptown.

‘Just a few more yards…’ Jim tells himself as he nears the apartment block where the Power family reside. Jim presses the button for the elevator, and is thankful that it is still working. Shortly, he enters his apartment, which seems unusually messy, and with a strange filth on the walls and ceiling. ‘Jim! I was beginning to worry!’ Margaret, vacuum cleaner in hand, calls out. Jim explains that the subway is out, and there was no bus, so he walked fifty-four blocks in the heat, and traffic was blocked for forty-six of them. ‘Oh, I’m so glad you’re home!’ Margaret declares as she rushes over and embraces Jim, who tells her that he is so glad to be home. He asks how the kids are, to which Margaret announces that they have got “it” but good, poor babies. She adds that she tried to call Dr Grant, but the phones have been acting funny all day, so she has just bee trying to keep them cool. ‘But this weather - and - and…the house is such a mess, and I just can’t seem to make any headway…electricity’s gone out twice…air conditioner’s broken…washing machine’s on the fritz…’ her voice trails off. Jim tells Margaret that she feels a little warm, too, and suggests that she forgets the mess. ‘Let’s you and me jump in the shower together. We’ll be better able to cope if we cool off a little first. He tells Margaret to go get ready, while he looks in on the kids.

‘Hey, Alex! Jack! What’s the deal guys?’ Jim calls out as he enters the bedroom his sons share. They are both lying on their bed bunks, in only their shorts, and they both moan in unison. Jim tells the boys that he can’t remember them being sick even once since before they lived at the beach house. ‘I guess you’re entitled - though you would have to pick the hottest day on record to catch a fever’. The boys moan again, and Jim tells them that he knows they are feeling pretty lousy. He adds that their mother said they are about one hundred and four degrees, and assures them they are working on a way to get them all cooled down a bit. A cooling fan and a jug of water sit beside the bed, and Jim tells his sons that he loves them and to hang in there.

Jim moves on to his daughters’ room, where Julie and Katie are also lying on their beds, the fan blowing air over them. Jim remarks that the fans are just blowing hot air, before asking Julie how she is doing. Julie tells her father that they said on the radio that the reason it is so hot is because of the pollution making a “greenhouse effect” and that someday, it is always going to be like this. Jim assures Julie that it is just a heatwave, and that it will cool off again in a couple of days. Julie tells her father that she is worried about Katie, so Jim puts his hand to his youngest child’s forehead. Katie is dripping with sweat, ‘Daddy? -’ she utters, as Jim tells her to hush, and that it will be all right.

Jim enters the bathroom, where Margaret is scrubbing the tiled floor. He informs her that he just took Katie’s temperature, and that she is up to one hundred and seven degrees, so he thinks they better put her in the tub first, as those fans just aren’t cutting it. Forlorn, Margaret stops scrubbing and looks up at Jim- ‘I just wanted to clean it up a little first…’ she begins, before Jim goes over to his wife and helps her up, she sits down on the toilet. ‘Sit here and rest, will ya? I’ll take care of it’ Jim assures her. Margaret mutters that she can’t understand why it is still a grimy mess, as she has cleaned up in here twice today already. She wonders if she is losing her mind with the heat. ‘God, the air is close in here…’ she adds. Jim tells Margaret to relax, and remarks that they will all feel better soon. He tries turning the tap over the bath tub on, but no water comes out. ‘Oh, swell. Where’s the water?’ he wonders, before a small trickle starts to come out of the faucet. Then, the water stops. Jim decides to try the hot water and supposes that they could cool it off with ice cubes.

The faucet groans, and Jim remarks that there is a lot of air in the line, before telling Margaret that he hears it coming up the pipes - any minute now - when suddenly, the water gushes from the tap, so hot that it scalds Jim - and it is a filthy color. ‘Hand me a towel - quick!’ Jim asks Margaret, and when she gives it to him, he is able to turn the faucet off. Jim is covered in the brown grime, and he remarks that it is globby rust - before realizing that it is actually sewage. It covers the floor around him and one some of the walls. Jim wonders how city sewage could get into their hot water line - as it is not possible. He exclaims that there could be hepatitis, and Lord knows what, in this. How are we going to clean it up?’ he wonders. ‘What’s that sound in the wall -?’ Margaret begins, when suddenly, the pipes groan again, before one of them breaks, and more of the mess spills into the bathroom.

The Cross Bronx Expressway, where freak accidents, fire and unscheduled road construction has backed up traffic from the GW Bridge through Co-op City. Thousands of desperate commuters slowly expiring in their broiling metal boxes - glued to an eight-mile strip of flypaper. Motionless in a cloying, velvet miasma of carbon monoxide, diesel and gasoline - brains melt like the sticky, steaming asphalt in the blistering heat. Like the Sirocco, which brings insanity to those caught by scorching winds, the heat drives already violent-prone gangs into a fevered frenzy of mayhem and destruction. The descend on the helpless motorists like a swarm of hornets. They break through the windows, smash the trunks, and demand wallets and valuables. ‘C’mon, man, what else you got? You holding out on me, man?’ one of the thugs asks as he steals a man’s wallet. ‘No - I’m not! Please!’ the man in the car exclaims. The thug tries to grab him, ‘Lesse what you holding - oooh! Looky here!’ the thug declares as he pulls a small packet containing something white from the man’s suit jacket pocket.

‘Heh! No wonder you did’n wan’ come across! Hooeee! Yessir! I’m gonna get inta this right now!’ the skinny thug declares as he walks away from the road, examining the packet. He comes to a stop under a bridge, ‘Jeez! I never seen this much coke in one place before! I could stay wired for a month, man!’ the thug tells himself, before deciding that he could sell some. ‘Crack this up, it be worth a fortune’. He boasts that he is a rich man, when suddenly, in the darkness behind him, a huge set of yellow teeth, and two narrow yellow eyes can be seen. ‘You’re dead, you insolent punk!’ the figure in the dark calls out. ‘Preying on your fellow humans! You’re a disgrace to the species!’ he exclaims, before clamping a very large white hand down on the thug’s head, blood splatters about, and the drugs go flying into the air.

Back at the Power residence, Alex and Jack are still lying on their beds. Alex tells Jack that he doesn’t get it, ‘Why are we sick? When Whitey came from space and gave us our powers, he also gave us a healing factor that’s supposed to take care of regular germs - make us immune too’. Sweat pouring down his face, Jack supposes that this might not be a regular germ, that it might be like when Pestilence touched Katie and made them sick. ‘We got better that time by combining our healing powers’ he reminds Alex. Alex points out that they have to get in a circle to do that, and their parents are here, they would get suspicious. ‘Besides, Pestilence is dead. This is probably just a forty-eight hour bug or something’ Alex remarks.

In the girls’ room, Katie looks over at Julie and asks ‘How can we be heroes if we can catch the flu just like anybody else?’ Julie tells her younger sister that Whitey never meant they had to be heroes all the time, and adds that she is glad they have a home where they can let it all go and just be regular kids when they need to, like now. Katie supposes that they have been right to keep it a secret from their Mom and Dad. ‘To them we’re just normal kids’ she adds. ‘That’s how they treat us. Who knows how they’d react if they knew’ Julie points out.

Back on the Cross-Bronx Expressway, the thugs from the gang who have been harassing people in their cars are clutching wounds on their bodies as they try to run from a figure lumbering behind them. ‘Run you guys!’ one of them calls out. ‘It’s going berserk!’ another exclaims, amongst screams. A horrid voice calls out ‘You disgust me, you young hoodlums with your loud music and freakish haircuts! No thought for your appearance at all - as though you don’t care what people think!’ He adds that they have no consideration for the sensibilities of normal, decent people, no regard for the dignity of the species. ‘Don’t you know we’re at war?’ he asks. ‘A war for the purity of humankind against the creeping mutant menace!’ The creature then asks the thugs if their parents know they are dressed like that? ‘That’s right, buddy! You show ‘em! Put the fear a’ God into the little commies!’ a man shouts from his car nearby.

The gluttonous creature continues to attack the thugs and remarks that the last thing they can afford is slackers in their own ranks. ‘And Douglas M Carmody has no patience for slackers!’ he declares, identifying himself. ‘So if your own parents don’t care enough to straighten you out - I’ll just have to do it myself!’ He then shoves a large arm through one of the thugs’ chest. The large man in the car pokes his head out the window and shouts Right on, buddy! Teach ‘em a lesson they won’t forget! That’s the trouble with kids today, no one takes a stand with ‘em - too much freedom!’ He adds that society is too permissive, and enquires as how you can have a free America with such a permissive society? He continues, ‘And drugs, yeah! It’s drugs too! We gotta get tough on these drugs!’ he shouts. The large creature identified as Carmody moves closer to the car, ‘Teach these punks some respect! Wipe ‘em out! Yeah - huh?’ the large man in the car declares.

‘You, Sir, are no better! You are loud, obnoxious and far! You make me sick!’ the creature called Carmody declares as he lumbers closer to the man in the car. Nervously, the man in the car replies ‘Uh - uh - hey, buddy, I didn’t mean nothing…’ when suddenly, the strange creature seems to melt. ‘What happened? Where’d it go?’ the man in the car calls out. A trail of goo can be seen under the car, when suddenly, the large man in the car cries out in pain as the goo has re-formed in the back of the car, the pale-colored, large Carmody shoves his fist into the back of the man, ‘How could you allow yourself to become so grossly obese! You are a successful businessman! You represent the leader class of homo sapiens! You must set the example!’ You are disgraceful!’ Carmody declares, before snapping the man’s neck. ‘Curse you! How dare you get blood on your nice jacket! I have to wear that suit in public, you know!’ Carmody remarks, and shortly, he emerges from the car, wearing the man’s blue suit pants and jacket over his blubbery form. Drool spills from his large, stained teeth, and Carmody exclaims that a man of his position can’t appear in public unclothed, and adds that there is one thing Douglas Carmody won’t be accused of - obscenity. The Bogeyman has returned!

Dusk falls over New York like an iron lid, bringing no cool breath to the sweltering, airless maze. In the city’s dirty bowels, it is already night. The signs and lights of Times Square spring awake to crackle and hum in the scorched-ozone haze. Already, the streets of Manhattan have begun to take on a supernatural, hellish aspect - but the denizens of this lowly place would be hard put on to tell the difference - until now. A glowing portal appears, ‘What the #$%&?’ someone calls out. ‘Illyana’s doing it! We’re getting through!’ a voice can be heard. ‘Watch your back! Watch your back! S’ym’s horde is massing -!’ someone else calls out. An instant later, several young heroes have emerged from the portal - along with an army of savage, horrid, demons, who begin to attack the city. The heroes are the New Mutants - Cannonball, Mirage, Magik, Sunspot, Warlock, Wolfsbane and their ally Gosamyr. ‘Look out! They’re pushing through -’ Mirage calls out, before one of the demons grabs her. ‘For mercy’s sake. Close the disc, Illyana! Close it!’ Wolfsbane pleads. Magik announces that she cannot, as she no longer possesses the power. One of the demons nearby throws his hands into the air: ‘But S’ym does! Haa haa haa! Only I control Limbo! And now my domain will spread over your world as well!’ he laughs, wickedly.

The Power apartment once more. Jim is in the kitchen pouring some water into a bucket. Margaret enters and informs her husband that Katie is sucking on some ice cubes, and she thinks that will help, only all the kids want some and there aren’t enough. ‘At least we can get cool water from the sink and use it to clean up the tub. I thought we’d never get that leak stopped!’ Jim replies, before remarking that if he can get the bath going, maybe things won’t be so bad, although they will have to get someone in here to fix the hole in the wall where he knocked it in to stop the leak. He adds that he cannot understand how something like that could happen in the first place. Margaret asks Jim if he has been listening to the radio, and tells him that the city is going nuts. ‘Lord, sometimes I wonder why we ever left the seacoast’ she adds, before switching the radio on.

An announcer is heard, stating that the rash of bizarre occurrences accompanying this record-breaking heat wave continues to mount a staggering death tool, as more of the abandoned West Side Highway collapses on a gridlock at 54th Street. The announcer adds that, elsewhere, more unexplained collisions and tunnel cave-ins on the IRT and IND lines have prompted the Mayor to urge commuters to avoid the subway entirely, but there is no further word on that BMT train which became trapped earlier this afternoon. The announcer reveals that some three hundred people are believed to have suffocated in that disaster. The announcer informs listeners that reports have surfaced that other strange tragedies around the city may be supernatural in origin - steam pipes unexpectedly bursting in the streets have scalded dozens of people to death, followed by unconfirmed reports of other inanimate objects taking on a malevolent life of their own. ‘Several reports are coming in now from the Times Square area of people being attacked by demonic creatures’. The announcer remarks that, whether or not these are figments of hysteria, a result of the unrelenting heat is unknown at this time, due to failure of services and communications around town. The announcer reports that it is known that vandalism, sickness and seemingly impossible disasters are plaguing the city at a time when the group of superheroes known as the Avengers have permanently disbanded, according to reports. ’Why the well-known group of self-styled do-gooders has chosen to cease operating at this time of New York’s greatest need is not known’. 

‘Yow! D’ja hear the radio in there?’ Jack calls out to Alex, who slowly sits up on the top bunk and remarks that they oughtta be out there doing something to help. ‘C’mon, we’ve got to think of something’. Alex starts to climb off the top bunk, but is so weak, he falls with a thud. ‘Oh, right, you’re in great shape to save the world’ Jack mutters. At hearing the noise, Margaret enters the boys’ room, ‘Alex! What happened, honey? Are you all right?’ she calls out. Alex assures his mother that he is fine, but that he has to go to the bathroom. Margaret helps Alex up and down the corridor towards the bathroom, ‘I want you to know your father and I have gotten it just about all cleaned up, so it won’t be long before we’ll all be able to -‘ Margaret begins, but when they enter, they both go wide-eyed, ‘Yee-ucch!’ Margaret exclaims. ‘Gross!’ Alex declares. Margaret turns and rushes from the bathroom, ‘Oh my Lord, Alex, honey, don’t go in there! Jim!’ Margaret calls out.

The smell burns Alex’s eyes, so he covers his face, realizing that the entire bathroom is covered n mildew, only worse. He knows that his Mom can’t stand mildew, Closing his eyes as he enters the bathroom, Alex tells himself that he has to do something, that this can’t be real, as molds and fungi grow fast, but not like this. ‘It’s like mutant mildew!’ he thinks to himself, before deciding that something strange is going on in the city, and this could be part of it. He wonders if it is not normal mildew, if it is something alien, deadly. ‘Maybe I can disintegrate it all before mom gets back - convince her that the heat made her think it was worse than it was’. As Alex starts to use his power to disintegrate the mold, revealing the clean floor and bath beneath it, he knows that it is kinda of a weak scam, but he doesn’t want his Mom exposing herself to this, as she is just a normal person.

Shortly, Alex only has a little more to do, but he cannot absorb much more energy without starting to glow. He stands over the toilet to relieve himself, and flushes it - telling himself that he will have to be careful - but as he turns around, ‘Holy cow! It’s growing back before my eyes!’ Alex tells himself, surprised. Suddenly, the toilet starts to overflow and water pours out of it, and the mildew creeps up Alex’s legs.

‘Jim! Now I know I’m not crazy. What they’re saying on the radio - it’s true! It’s all true!’ Margaret declares as she rushes back into the kitchen, adding that they have to gather the kids and get the heck out of here. ‘One thing’s for sure, this is more than just a typical heatwave’ Jim agrees. He touches Margaret’s face and adds that something is definitely going on, but that it is worse out there than it is in here, and that he doesn’t think it is safe to take the kids outside. They glance at the radio when Jim notices that it is getting loud. They both cover their ears, ‘Yow! It’s blaring - hurts!’ Jim exclaims. ‘Gotta shut it off!’ Margaret shouts. ‘Can’t hear you! My ears -’ Jim begins. ‘Got to turn the -’ Margaret begins as she reaches for the radio control - but she gets a shock, and the controller on the radio gets an evil demonic expression. ‘Oh God! It’s getting louder!’ Margaret utters.

Jim points out that there is no reason for it to act like that, and picking up a rubber spatula, uses it to pull the radio cord out of the plug socket in the wall - but it still keeps on making noise. ‘It won’t stop! - How -?’ Jim begins. ‘Lookout, honey! Stand back!’ Margaret shouts as she picks up a rolling pin, and slams it down on the radio. The kitchen goes silent. ‘Whew for a minute I was afraid that wasn’t going to work’ Margaret admits. Jim suggests that they take their chances and get out of here while they still can. He tells Margaret that they should take the kids to Pauline’s, as he doesn’t want to wait for something worse to happen.

‘YAAA! No! No!’ Katie screams. ‘Katie! Katie, what’s wrong?’ Julie calls out, looking over to her sister. ‘Crack in wall. Bogeyman! A Bogeyman in the wall!’ Katie replies. Julie gets out of bed and goes over to Katie, deciding that she is delirious. Julie starts to shake her sister, and tells her that it is only a dream, that everything is okay, and that she is safe. ‘N-no -’ Katie begins, before Julie tells her that when she was a kid, she used to see a Bogeyman in the cracks and used to think they were waiting under the bed to get her. ‘But Katie - Carmody’s in Limbo and there is no such thing as a real Bogeyma-’ Julie begins, when suddenly, an arm reaches out from under her bed and grabs her by her hair, pulling her back. ‘Wrong on both counts, girls! No screaming now…don’t want your folks to hear, do we? They might learn the truth heh heh heh’ the voice under the bed laughs. Julie starts to black out, she knows she has to go cloudy. ‘Go ahead - turn to smoke, Julie. Heh heh. I could’ve snapped your neck five times already, if I’d wanted to…but I’ve something better in mind!’ the voice exclaims.

Julie is released from the clammy clutch of the Bogeyman. ‘Julie? Julie, what’s wrong?’ Katie calls out, while Julie touches her free neck, and turns to her bed, where the voice calls out ‘Something much better in mind! And if can go anywhere, fit any hiding place - so you’ll never know when or where I’m going to strike! I’ll be watching…’. Julie sits up on Katie’s bed and holds her younger sister, who asks what is going on, and reveals that she feels funny. Julie tells Katie to hush, and come with her, as quickly as she can. Julie knows that she has to tell Jack and Alex that the Bogeyman is real, and that she thinks somehow he is Carmody. Katie stumbles alongside Julie, she is basically delirious: ‘Where’re we goin’ Mama? I wanna lie down…Friday isn’t this way…’ she calls out. ‘I’m not Mom, Katie. This is Julie! You’ve got to try to walk, baby! We’ve gotta -’ Julie begins, before gasping as her parents enter the room

‘Julie! It’s just us, sweetheart! What’s the matter?’ Jim asks. Holding Katie up, Julie tells her father that they have to get her to the hospital, and fast. Jim picks Katie up and Margaret tells Julie that she knows, but that she doesn’t think they stand much of a chance getting to a hospital tonight, as the whole city is kind of crazy. ‘But your gather and I think we can make it to your Aunt Pauline’s. We’ll be all right there’ Margaret explains. Jim reports that he managed to get Pauline on the phone, and that she says her building seems unaffected, and she is filling her tub now to be sure they will have water. ‘Katie’ll be okay as soon as we get her fever down’ Jim adds. Margaret enters the boys’ room as they are getting dressed. ‘Boys…’ she begins. ‘We know, Ma. We heard’ Alex replies, to which Margaret suggests they get out of here as quickly and calmly as possible.

The Power family enter the corridor outside their apartment, ‘Elevator’s still working, thank Heaven’ Jim remarks, while Julie has filled her brothers in on her mysterious encounter, as they stand away from their parents and Katie. ‘Holy cow! It’s a good thing you weren’t hurt, Julie - but there’s nothing we can do about this Bogeyman until he shows himself!’ Alex remarks, adding that right now they have got to find a way to get Katie in a circle with them and use their healing powers without their Mom and Dad catching on. Inside the elevator, Margaret tells her family that the air is close, like a steam-bath in here. Jim tells everyone to hang on, as they will be out of here in a minute, when suddenly, the elevator stops moving. ‘The elevator’s stuck! Margaret gasps. ‘We’re trapped between floors!’ Julie calls out. The elevator roof is then ripped open - and the Bogeyman stares down at the family. ‘That’s right, kid. It’s me again - and this time I’m gonna settle your hash for good!’ the Bogeyman exclaims.

‘It’s a demon! Like on the radio!’ Jim calls out. ‘Demons! Aliens! For Heaven’s sake, why do these things keep happening to our family?’ Margaret exclaims, fear in her eyes. ‘Why?’ Margaret begins, before the Bogeyman reaches down and picks Margaret and Jim up by their necks. ‘Margaret - don’t wiggle - could - snap - own neck - by accident -’ Jim manages to utter. ‘Why you say? You mean you really don’t know? They’ve actually kept it a secret from you all this time? Ha! That’s great!’ the Bogeyman exclaims. ‘The reason these “thins” keep happening, you gullible little twit, is because your kids are a bunch of unholy mutant monsters!’ the Bogeyman declares. As the Power kids huddle in a circle together, arms around each other, the Bogeyman announces that they ruined his career, they ruined his life, cast him into Limbo. ‘And they call themselves superheroes? Ha!’

Margaret glances down at her children, while Jim looks up at the Bogeyman, who asks ‘Whaddya think of that, kids? I’ve blown your little secret - how’re you gonna cover it up this time?’ he asks. ‘No! It’s impossible! It’ can’t be! Not our children! It’s a mistake. Leave them alone!’ Margaret calls out, while Jim tells the Bogeyman that he has the wrong people. ‘Don’t you think we know our own kids for God’s sake?’ he asks. The Bogeyman stares down with angry eyes, ‘They are mutants, I say! Mutants - and I’m giving them a choice! Either they prove it by trying to save your lives - or watch while I twist your heads clean off!’ the Bogeyman threatens.

The kids all look up at the Bogeyman, ‘Okay, jerk face, you win’ Jack calls out. ‘Mom - Dad - we hoped it would never have to happen this way’ Alex tells his parents, while Katie adds that they are sorry for lying. ‘But what he says is true…costumes on!’ Julie exclaims, and an instant later, the kids are clad in their brightly colored costumes. ‘We are…Power Pack!’ they calls out in unison, looking up angrily at the Bogeyman, as Jack calls out ‘Not put ‘em down, potato face - so we can kick yer backside!’

Characters Involved: 

Counterweight (Jack), Destroyer VI (Alex), Molecula (Julie), Starstreak (Katie) (all Power Pack)

Cannonball, Magik, Mirage, Sunspot, Warlock, Wolfsbane (all New Mutants)


Jim & Margaret Power










Story Notes: 

This issue ties into the “Inferno” crossover.

Joe Rosen is uncredited as letterer this issue.

Jon Bogdanove takes over from Louise Simonson as writer with this issue. He was the regular penciler for Power Pack (1st series) since #22 and continues to pencil most issues until #52. He also previously wrote Power Pack (1st series) #36.

This issue the Bogeyman is referred to as the Boogyman. He was always previously called the Bogeyman. Even the title is incorrectly spelt Boogyman. This is rectified in the next issue.

Power Pack first encountered Douglas M Carmody in Power Pack (1st series) #5, in which he believed the kids were mutants. He returned as the Bogeyman in Power Pack (1st series) #14-15, and the encountered him again in Power Pack (1st series) #39-40, where he was exiled to Limbo by Magik.

The Horseman of Apocalypse, Pestilence, touched Katie in Power Pack (1st series) #35. Pestilence died the same issue.

The New Mutants’ appearance this issue is directly tied into New Mutants (1st series) #71.

The Avengers were disbanded as seen in Avengers (1st series) #298-300, which also ties into the Inferno crossover.

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