Born missing an arm and a leg, Michael "Mike" Power never let his disability stand in his way as a child, solving neighborhood mysteries as a kid detective with his dog Smarts as "Mighty" Mikey Power. However, after a chance encounter with the Action Man, he began to realize there was only so much he could do with his condition. Working tirelessly, Mike was eventually able to replace his missing limbs with mighty mechanical prosthetics of his own design and, after meeting "G.I. Joe" Colton, became valued Adventure Team member the Atomic Man!
Always striving to improve his prosthetics, Mike Power eventually fell in with scientist Garrison Kreiger, who he hoped could help him improve his "atomic" limbs. Though Kreiger's experiments seemingly led to Mike's death, there may be more to the situation than meets the eye...
Mike Power was born in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. While he was in the womb, he contracted amniotic band syndrome, leading to him being born without his right arm and left leg. Having to make do with a pair of clunky prosthetics, "Mikey" Power eventually became something of a kid detective in spite of his disability, living by the detective's code and cracking cases all over his neighborhood with the help of his pet dog Smarts. On one such case, he tracked Annie's missing bicycle to neighborhood bullies Pidge and Finney after discovering the muddy footprint Pidge left on his face after kicking him around matched the footprints at the scene of the crime. Later, Pidge reached out to Mikey for help rescuing Finney from the "haunted house" he'd gotten trapped inside. After the two boys and Smarts snuck inside the house, Pidge was quickly scared off by a "ghost" that Mikey soon discovered was actually being created by some sort of "hologram projector". As he investigated it, Mikey was saved from a pair of Brasnyan smugglers hiding out in the house by the British special agent Action Man who'd been tracking them. As the Brit dealt with them, Mikey followed Smarts as he sniffed out where the smugglers were holding Finney, leading to Mikey rescuing him while Action Man stopped the criminals.
After his encounter with the Action Man, Mikey's taste of the life his disability would keep him from left him feeling helpless for the first time in his life. Having kept the hologram projector (which, unbeknownst to him, was in fact the head of an IRON Trooper), Mike gave up being a detective and dedicated himself to cracking the secrets the projector held within, hoping he may be able to reverse engineer its technology and create new, superior prosthetic limbs for himself. His research eventually became something of an obsession, leading to him neglecting Smarts who in turn ran away from home. He did eventually figure it out, leading to the invention of the first generation of his "atomic" limbs. His proficiency with cybernetics was such that he'd eventually earn several degrees in the field from M.I.T. and CalTech.
Major Mike Power
After graduating, Mike met and befriended Joe Colton and, after thoroughly impressing him with his cybernetic limbs' abilities, became a member of his Adventure Team with the codename "Atomic Man". He would later befriend fellow advanced technology user Richard "Bulletman" Ruby after his induction into the Adventure Team, the two of them changing the perception of the unit.
In the mid-1980s, Atomic Man accompanied his teammates on a mission to Egypt to rescue Garrison Kreiger from the Tomb of Amtoltec. When their non-superpowered teammates were overwhelmed by a swarm of Iron Troopers dressed as mummies, Atomic Man and Bulletman swooped in to help them out. After the Decepticon Soundwave blew a hole inside the pyramid, Atomic Man, Bulletman, and Stalker wasted no time diving in to help out Joe and Miles Mayhem battle the giant robot. However, the Cybertronian quickly began working to take out Mike's atomic limbs, nearly destroying them before Bulletman intervened. Though they'd been burnt to a crisp by laser fire, Mike felt an unexplainable compulsion to stagger over to the mysterious "Talisman" Kreiger had been searching the pyramid for. The alien artifact repaired his limbs and granted him strange new abilities such as projecting force fields. As a bemused Soundwave flew off, causing the pyramid to begin caving in, Atomic Man used his new abilities to save his teammates from being crushed by rubble.
On a later mission to rescue Dr. Emil Burkhart, Atomic Man ignored Joe's order to stay back, believing his atomic limbs would give him the speed he needed to rescue the scientist before the device he was chained to exploded. Unfortunately he was wrong and the scientist's fiery death in front of his young daughter led to Atomic Man feeling helpless yet again. He eventually reached out to Garrison Kreiger, hoping the scientist's knowledge of the Talisman could help improve his limbs further and match up to the increasing demands of his work. This led to the creation of Project: Iceman, attempting to use Mike's atomic limbs to connect and control the Talisman. During one of the final tests in 1994, Power activated the Talisman, creating a massive surge in energy, out of which stepped Sgt. Savage, who had been transported there from 1944. However, before Savage could collect his thoughts, the Adventure Team – now known as "Adventure Force" – arrived to shut down Kreiger's operation. Stalker found Mike in the rubble of the Talisman's energy surge. Checking his heartbeat, Stalker confirmed that he had none.
Power's seeming death led to the disbanding of the Adventure Team and Kreiger's "retirement" from the military to private business. Duke seemed to remember Power making an appearance alongside Joe Colton and Bulletman at the graduation ceremony for his USAF Qualification Course.When asked about the incident some years later, both Stalker and Richard Ruby would say that Kreiger had murdered Mike Power. Despite his death,
The Ice Man
After learning of the facility, the so-called Revolutionaries traveled to Brasnya alongside M.A.S.K. members Matt Trakker and Gloria Baker to investigate what the villainous Kreiger was up to. After Action Man was able to take out the reanimated Transformers by flooding the corridor they were in, Kreiger ordered Mike to pump out the water. Soon after, the M.A.S.K. members began closing in on Kreiger's control center, prompting him to infuse Mike with Ore-13, super charging him and allowing him full access to the Talisman's powers. Having heard stories about him, the modern Action Man attempted to talk things out with Mike. Relating to him by saying that he too knew what it was like to not feel like he was good enough to handle his job, Ian eventually broke through to Mike, making him realize that he'd lost his way. Looking back on his life, Mike apologized for neglecting Smarts and wished that they could have had one more winter to spend together before shutting off his cybernetics, killing him and deactivating the base and reanimated Transformers.
Another Lease on Life
However, once again Mike Power's seeming death wasn't quite what it seemed. Though he did die, Mike now found himself aged back into a boy within the realm of infraspace, a mysterious dimension that served as the region between life and death for Cybertronians. When Garrison Blackrock found his mind transported to infraspace by the Talisman's mysterious powers and came face to face with his old master Onyx Prime, Mike prevented Onyx from killing Blackrock, the Atomic Boy vowing to not let bullies push other people around. With Onyx temporarily out of the way, Mike advised Blackrock to stop letting his past define him and take this chance to reinvent himself. Power would get his own shot at reinvention shortly thereafter when his spirit somehow managed to exit infraspace and inhabit the body of Centurion, causing both of their spirits to combine and create a new consciousness inside of the Eukarian's body. With Mike Power's dream of redemption in his mind, the Atomic Man-Centurion hybrid dove to take a hit of the Talisman's energy, preventing the blast from mutating the Revolutionaries and several other humans. Though this appeared to kill him, he soon awoke and explained his situation to the humans who were confused by Centurion's seeming sudden change of heart.
- In "Secret Raiders", Atomic Man is seen next to Bulletman, likely a reference to the fact that the original characters formed the "Super Adventure Team." The Hasbro Heroes Sourcebook entry for Bulletman later canonized this name.
- Power's cameo in Duke's memories of his graduation ceremony in the third issue of G.I. Joe vol. 3 isn't compatible with the character's history as presented in the later, post-Hasbro Universe Revolutionaries. This memory having been dragged up by Dr. Mindbender while specifically trying to get a reaction out of Duke may help explain this inconsistency however.