"Rheostat" is a word that's fallen out of common usage. It means an adjustable resistor so constructed that its resistance may be changed without opening the circuit in which it is connected, thereby controlling the current in the circuit. Of course, John could have just said "This switch ought to shut off the power," but that wouldn't sound very Science-y!
John is able to smash the generator easily despite not being a superhero (and wouldn't he be in trouble if his hunch had been wrong!). I did include a note in the scientist entry in the mobsters section of the H&H 2nd ed. basic rulebook that scientists can all wreck labs -- but John is a Hero, not a mobster. For now, this will just have to fall outside the game mechanics...until the scientist class comes back in the Advanced Hideouts & Hoodlums Heroes Handbook someday...
There's a very curious editor's note about a giant induction field displayed at the New York World's Fair. I have not been able to find evidence of this, unless the editor is referring to the automated highway system demonstrated in the Futurama exhibit. I can find no evidence that Russian scientists were ever working on a "floating railroad." Could the author have read something about the electrification of the Russian railway system and misunderstood...?
I like to think these hoodlums are just sitting there in warehouse drinking and planning because they're drunken hoodlums.
The idea that the Boss left such a simple note for Agent M-29 on a scrap of paper, rather than expecting him to commit a single sentence to memory, is an obviously planted clue. But planted for a trap, or by an Editor who really wants his player to get to that warehouse?
It's also worth noting that Wings doesn't head straight to the warehouse, but reports his intention to his superior officer first. That's a very Lawful way to play.
We also see Wings being surprised. Fresh arrivals to an ongoing combat still get a chance at surprise.
Although players should have some control over their supporting cast, they cannot just arbitrarily declare that their SCMs show up when the Hero is in trouble. The players can suggest that SCMs show up, and the Editor can decide if he should say yes or no, or give them a save vs. plot to see if it happens.
This sequence reminded me, while preparing the chase rules for 2nd edition, that I needed to include a missile combat phase during the chase turn!
I think I missed this, though -- when I compiled a list of abstract complications that could happen during a chase, I may have missed the slowing complication, like a flat tire. I'll have to double check...
The "boss" is either a master criminal or, if the spy class was in use, a higher level spy.
Here's a precedent for invisibility, at least granted by trophy items, not turning items touched invisible.
Large patio doors without closed drapes make a great way to spy on the hideouts' occupants before going in.
(Scans courtesy of Digital Comic Museum.)