Appearing in "Power Play!"
- Jack Ventura (Death) (Only in flashback)
- Lieutenant Michael Lynch (First appearance)
- Unlimited Class Wrestling Federation
Races and Species:
- Earth (Main story and flashback)
Synopsis for "Power Play!"Sharon Ventura is walkiing through a sketchy neighborhood on her way to keep her appointment with the Power Broker to get enhanced strength. En route she is jumped by a gang of thugs, however they are unprepared for the fact that Sharon can defend herself. However one of them manages to hit her over the head from behind causing Sharon to become incredibly dizzy. Before the thugs can take advantage of her, they are suddenly attacked by a man in a military uniform. Still seeing double, Sharon confuses this man for her father. After the man saves Sharon and runs off the gang, he checks to see if she is okay and introduces himself as Lieutenant Michael Lynch. When Sharon assures him that she will be okay, Lynch walks off telling her to be careful. Seeing the man in the uniform has caused the memories of Sharon's childhood to come flooding back to her. She recalls how his father was a strict military man and there was nothing she could do to satisfy him. As a youth she pushed herself through gymnastics, but even winning first place would never garner so much a word of praise from her father. Later as a young adult, Sharon entered into the military academy. There she was asked to indict a roommate in a cheating scandal that threatened to make the school so bad. When Ventura refused to comply, she was expelled for not following a direct order. That action prompted her father to basically disown her. When her father died a year later she still felt guilty. Then to show her father that she was one of the best she set out on her career as an adventurer, seeking out dangerous professions and risking her life doing the impossible.
Finishing her recollections, Sharon is reaffirmed to be going to the Power Broker because she believes that she is only going to get better from here. Meanwhile back at the hotel where the Thing and the other UCWF wrestlers are staying, the Thing and Dynamite Dunphy are preparing for a promo spite. While Ben struggles to put on a belt -- which proves difficult because he's put on weight -- he notices that Dunphy is taking some pills. Ben asks what they are for, and Dunphy explains they're nerve pills. Not thinking much of it, Ben gives up on the belt, wondering if this is just another symptom of whatever is causing his dizzy spells. Although Ben is secretly concerned that there is something seriously wrong with himself. Because they're running late, Dunphy tells Ben to get going. Seeing the Power Broker's card on Dunphy's dressing table, Ben tells him that he can't wait for the shoot to be over because there is something he needs to look into.
At that very moment, Sharon Ventura is in the waiting room at the Power Broker's clinic when she is told by the nurse to step inside the next room. It is pitch black in there and suddenly bright lights turn on blinding her. There is a man in the room behind a desk but his features are lost in the bright, blinding light. He introduces himself as the Power Broker and tells her that her application has been accepted and she meets the profile for strength augmentation. The Power Broker then explains the two part treatment: radiation bombardment with a stabilization enzyme injection followed by a second treatment which the Power Broker claims will boost her power level to the point where she can compete in the UCWF and work to pay off what she owes for treatment. With that the Power Broker thanks her for her patronage and the lights go out. Soon Sharon is led into a lab by two men who are also in the darkened room. As Sharon begins to have second thoughts about the process the men won't listen to her and strap her into a machine. In enters Doctor Malus who is to administer the treatment. He activates the device despite Sharon's sudden protests.
While in Burbank, the Thing and Dynamite Dunphy finish shooting their wrestling promo. Afterwards Ben tells Dunphy that he is going to try and get to the Power Broker before Sharon does. Hearing this surprises Dunphy, who doesn't say much when the Thing takes off, even though he knows far more than he lets on. Back at the Power Brokers offices, Sharon's treatment continues however the process is causing her to hallucinate images of her father mocking her inability to make him proud. When Malus approaches her with a needle and is about to inject her with the second part of the process, she snaps out of the hallucination and resists. Surprisingly her strength is already increase and she is able to break free from her bonds. As Sharon tries to make a break for it, the Thing arrives in the neighborhood in a taxi cab. Getting out he spots the street punks beating up Lt. Lynch and comes to his rescue. As he is busy fighting off the gang, Sharon fights through the guards trying to escape the Power Broker's lair. Breaking into a sealed off room she is horrified to find failed test subjects, horribly mutated by the Power Broker's operation crying out to her from behind bars. When a number of wrestlers come bursting into the room, she makes a quick run for the window and dives out. However she lands right in the arms of a gang of other wrestlers down below.
Hearing the fight from up the street both the Thing and Lt. Lynch come to Sharon's aid and help her fight off the gang of wrestlers. As Ben piles into them he orders Lynch and Sharon to take off. The pair take a cab back to the hotel where Sharon tells Aunt Freeze about the strange goings on. She tells Sharon to put on the costume she had made for her but excuses herself while she answers the phone. When Sharon puts on the costume, Michael remarks how much it reminds him of the original Ms. Marvel. Aunt Freeze finishes her phone call and then excuses herself so she can attend to private business, leaving Sharon and Michael alone. The pair are instantly attracted to each other and are about to kiss when Aunt Freeze interrupts them with the Grapplers, ordering them dead. Elsewhere in the hotel, the Thing goes to his room where he finds Dunphy in the bathroom going through withdrawl symptoms. Dynamite explains that the Power Broker got every wrestler that underwent his process hooked on stabilizer drugs in order to stop from going through withdrawl.
Ben then goes rushing off to find Sharon and finds her and Lynch thick in a fight with the Grapplers. Ben pulls the pair out of there and they make a run for it. Wondering if Garner is in on the scam and what's going on, Ben calls an ambulance for Dunphy. He then explains to Sharon what the Power Broker has been up to. Learning this, Ms. Marvel tells Ben that she underwent the Power Broker's process and needs his help.
Sharon Ventura wants power, the kind only the Power Broker can give! Then why does she suddenly need the Thing's help? And why does she need it fast?
- Ben's dizziness in this issue is a symptom of his body undergoing further mutation which occurs next issue.
- Lt. Lynch mentions how Sharon's costume reminds her of the original Ms. Marvel. He is referring to Carol Danvers who was Ms. Marvel from Ms. Marvel #1-Ms. Marvel #23. She later seemingly lost her powers as depicted in Marvel Super-Heroes Vol 2 #11/Avengers Annual #10 while battling Rogue, forcing her to retire at the time. She later gained new powers as Binary in Uncanny X-Men #164. She eventually returned to her Ms. Marvel title in Avengers #501.
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