Superboy



Superboy, More Fun Comics 101 (January-February 1945)

In a letter to Jack Liebowitz at Detective Comics dated November 30, 1938, Jerry Siegel proposed a series based on "the adventures of Superman as a youth." Liebowitz responded on December 2, 1938, effectively declining the pitch. Jerry submitted a 13-page Superboy script in December 1940, but the story went unpublished. In the June 21, 1941, issue of The Saturday Evening Post, Jerry promoted the character as "Superman before he developed a social conscience." A copyright ashcan for a Superboy comic book was produced by Detective Comics in late 1941. The Steranko History of Comics, Vol. 2 incorrectly claims that Superboy was modeled after Captain Marvel, Jr., first published in December 1941.

The series was put on hold once the United States entered World War II. Jerry Siegel was drafted into the Army on June 28, 1943, and later stationed at Hickam Field on Oahu, Hawaii. In a letter dated October 1, 1944, Joe Shuster informed Jerry that a five-page Superboy feature had been completed. The story was copyrighted on November 18, 1944. Superboy first appeared in More Fun Comics #101 (January-February 1945) with no credit to Siegel or Shuster.

Don Cameron provided the scripts for the next six Superboy features in More Fun Comics #102–107. Superboy stories moved to Adventure Comics beginning with issue #103 (April 1946). 

While in the Army, publicist Albert Zugsmith encouraged Jerry Siegel to pursue legal action. Siegel was discharged on January 21, 1946, and he spent the next year negotiating with Jack Liebowitz over fair compensation and creator rights. In April 1947, Siegel and Shuster sued National Comic Publications for the rights of Superman and Superboy plus a share of past profits. On April 12, 1948, thr New York Supreme Court Judge decided that Superman belonged to National and Superboy belonged to Siegel. Superboy was sold to National for $94,013.16 and most of the payment was spent on legal fees.

Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were released from National and all Superman properties. Their names were removed from story bylines after Action Comics #118, Adventure Comics #126, Superman #51, and World's Finest Comics #33. Legal battles for Superman and Superboy would continue over the next 70 years.

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Superboy #1 (March–April 1949) appeared on newsstands in January 1949, making him the sixth DC Comics character to receive a solo title. The Superboy logo was designed by Ira Schnapp. Beginning with issue #197, the series was titled Superboy starring the Legion of Super-Heroes. The series was retitled Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes for issues #222–228 (December 1976–⁠December 1979).

Superboy 1 (March-April 1949) by Wayne Boring & Stan Kaye


The series was relaunched as The New Adventures of Superboy, published for 54 issues dated January 1980 to June 1984. Cary Bates and Paul Kupperberg provided the majority of scripts. Nearly every story in the series was penciled by Kurt Schaffenberger.

The New Adventures of Superboy vol 2 no 1 (January 1980)


Superboy and the Silver Age continuity of Earth-One were erased following the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" relaunch. The crossover event introduced Superboy-Prime in DC Comics Presents #87 (November 1985). Superboy-Prime was created by Elliot S. Maggin and Curt Swan. An alternate Kal-El is teleported from Krypton to the "real world" of Earth-Prime where the DC Universe exists in fiction. Superboy-Prime does not have the power limitations of Superman. After the Anti-Monitor is defeated, New Earth is created and Superboy-Prime is transported to a "paradise dimension."

DC Comics Presents 87 (November 1985)


Crisis on Infinite Earths led to continuity problems for Legion of Super-Heroes stories in the 30th century. On New Earth, Superman never became Superboy and Supergirl never existed. The final appearance of the Pre-Crisis Superboy was in Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 3, #23 (June 1986). The Pocket Universe Superboy first appeared in issue #37 (August 1987). The Time Trapper created a Pocket Universe containing a copy of Krypton and Earth-One, manipulating Superboy to capture the Legionnaires. After an encounter with Superman, Superboy joins the Legion to stop the Time Trapper. The Pocket Universe Superboy sacrifices himself to save multiverse in Legion of Super-Heroes #38, "The Greatest Hero of Them All" (September 1987).

Action Comics 591 (August 1987) by John Byrne


The Superboy of New-Earth first appeared in The Adventures of Superman #500 (Early June 1993). The character was created by Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett for the "Reign of the Supermen!" storyline. The Cadmus Project clones a "DNAlien" using genetic templates of Superman and Lex Luthor. "Experiment 13" escapes the facility before fully maturing and markets himself as Superman.

The 16-year-old clone takes the name of Superboy in The Adventures of Superman #506 (November 1993). A fourth Superboy series was launched in October 1994. Superman gives him the Kryptonian name Kon-El in Superboy vol. 4, #59 (February 1999). The name honors a descendant adopted by the House of El. Superboy briefly used the identity of Carl Krummet, an anagram of the creators' names. Kon-El later takes the private name of Conner Kent after being adopted by Jonathan and Martha Kent.

Superboy vol 4 no 1 (October 1994)


Superboy-Prime returned as the main protagonist of the "Infinite Crisis" crossover event. Superboy-Prime and Alexander Luthor, Jr. of Earth-Three escape the "paradise dimension," altering the multiverse. After being trapped in the Speed Force for four years, Superboy-Prime creates a yellow-sun containment suit based on the Anti-Monitor armor. Kon-El is killed battling Superboy-Prime in Infinite Crisis #6 (May 2006).

Infinite Crisis 6 (May 2006)

After being defeated by Superman, Superboy-Prime is arrested by the Green Lantern Corps. The Guardians of the Universe imprison him inside of a red Sun-Eater on Oa, where he carves the Superman emblem into his chest.

Superboy-Prime is later freed during "The Sinestro Corps War". A Guardian rips Superboy-Prime apart, warping him into the multiverse timestream. The Time Trapper locates Superboy-Prime and sends him to the 31st century. Outraged to be forgotten by society, he destroys Smallville and frees the Legion of Super-Villains.

Kon-El returns from the multiverse to face Superboy-Prime in Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #5 (September 2009). The Time Trapper is ultimately revealed to be an older Superboy-Prime. The resulting paradox transports Superboy-Prime back to his home in the "real world" of Earth-Prime.


A fifth Superboy series featuring Kon-El and Krypto in Smallville was published from January to October 2011. The series was rebooted again following the "Flashpoint" crossover.

Superboy vol 5 no 1 (January 2011)


The sixth volume of Superboy was published from November 2011 to October 2014. The "New 52" Kon-El is trapped on Gemworld. On Prime Earth, Jonathan Lane Kent is the Superboy of an alternate future timeline. Another Superboy is cloned combining DNA from Jonathan and alternate versions of Superman and Lois Lane. Both clones were seemingly erased from existence during the "DC Universe Rebirth" event.

Superboy vol 6 no 1 (November 2011)


Jonathan Samuel Kent, the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, first appeared in Convergence: Superman #2 (July 2015). The name is derived from his grandfathers Jonathan Kent and Samuel Lane. Jon Kent was created by writer and artist Dan Jurgens. Lois originally gave birth to Jon in the Batcave of Thomas Wayne, the Batman of the "Flashpoint" timeline. Jon is formally introduced as Superboy in Superman vol. 4, #6 (November 2016).

Superman vol 4 no 6 (Early November 2016)

The origin of Jon Kent was retconned following the four-part "Superman: Reborn" storyline of the "DC Universe Rebirth". In Action Comics #977 (Early June 2017), Kelex displays archive imagery of Jon being born inside of the Fortress of Solitude on Prime Earth.

Jon teamed up with Damien Wayne as Robin in the 16-issue series Super Sons (April 2017–⁠July 2018). A previous "Super Sons" team of Superman Jr. and Batman Jr. on Earth-154 appeared in World's Finest Comics #215 (January 1973).

Super Sons 1 (April 2017)

After spending years imprisoned by Ultraman on Earth-3, Jon returned to Prime Earth as a 17-year-old in Superman vol. 5, #6 (February 2019). The Future State version of Jon Kent as Superman first appeared as a vision in Dark Nights: Death Metal #7 (March 2021). Jon received a solo title in the fall of 2021 with Superman: Son of Kal-El. The series attracted extensive media coverage once it was revealed that Jon is bisexual in issue #5 (January 2022).


In the ongoing Dawn of DC initiative, Kon-El wears a new jacket similar to Kara Zor-El in the new Superman Family. The new designs debuted in Superman vol. 6, #1 (April 2023).

Steve Beach, Action Comics #1052 (April 2023)


Superboy: The Man of Tomorrow (June 2023–Present) is a limited series featuring Kon-El. Following the events of "Infinite Frontier," Connor is searching for his purpose in the new Superman Family. Following a galactic distress signal, Superboy teleports to an uncharted planet.

Superboy Man of Tomorrow #1 (June 2023)


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In 1961, a pilot episode was produced for The Adventures of Superboy television series. The show was created as a successor to The Adventures of Superman starring George Reeves. Johnny Rockwell starred as the first actor to portray Superboy. Bunny Henning was cast as the first Lana Lang.


Superboy was voiced by Bob Hastings in The Adventures of Superboy, a series of 34 animated shorts produced by Filmation. The Superboy segments appeared in The New Adventures of Superman (1966–⁠1970), The Superman/Aquaman Hour of Adventure (1967–⁠1968), The Batman/Superman Hour (1968–⁠1969), and The Superman/Batman Adventures (1991). Superboy was voiced by Danny Dark in the Challenge of the Superfriends segment "History of Doom" (December 23, 1978) and by Jerry Dexter in the Super Friends short "Return of the Phantoms" (October 8, 1983).


The Superboy television series aired in syndication for four seasons from October 8, 1988, to May 17, 1992. The series was created by Ilya and Alexander Salkind, producers of the Superman films and Supergirl. Clark attends Shuster University in Siegelville and works for the school newspaper, Shuster Herald. John Haymes Newton originally starred as Superboy and Clark Kent. Newton was replaced by Gerard Christopher after the first season. The series was titled The Adventures of Superboy for the third and fourth seasons.


The clone Superboy appears as a playable character in The Death and Return of Superman video game. The game was released by Sunsoft for the Super NES in August 1994. A Sega Genesis version rated MA-13 followed in 1995. Guinness World Records 2009 lists the title as the "First superhero game to tie into a contemporary storyline." The game features digitized artwork reproduced from the "Doomsday!" and "Reign of the Supermen!" storylines.


Smallville aired for ten seasons on The WB from October 16, 2001, to May 13, 2011. The series starred Tom Welling as a young Clark Kent in his adopted Kansas hometown. The character is only referred to as "Superboy" once by Arthur Curry in the fifth season. The final season features a character named Conner Kent played by Lucas Grabeel. Similar to Kon-El, Conner was cloned using DNA from Clark and Lex. Conner wears the same black t-shirt and emblem as Kon-El in the comic books. In 2019, Tom Welling reprised his role as Clark during the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover event on The CW.


An animated Legion of Super-Heroes series aired from September 23, 2006, to April 5, 2008. The Legion of Super-Heroes first appeared in Adventure Comics #247 (April 1958). The team was created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino for a one-time Superboy adventure in the 31st century. Due to the legal battle over the rights to Superboy, the cartoon character was referred to as a young Superman.


Superboy is voiced by Nolan North in the animated Young Justice series. The show originally aired from November 26, 2010, to June 9, 2022. Similar to Kon-El, Superboy is a 16-year-old clone created from the DNA of Superman and Lex Luthor. The character is given the name Conner Kent by Miss Martian and Martian Manhunter.


Joshua Orpin stars as Superboy in the Titans television series. The character debuted in the episode "Conner" on October 11, 2019. Originally named "Project-13," Conner is a hybrid clone of Superman and Lex Luthor created by Cadmus Laboratories. Conner escapes by killing the scientists and freeing Krypto.


The CW series Superman & Lois premiered on February 23, 2021. An alternate version of Jonathan Kent named Jon-El wears a costume based on the Superboy clone from the "Reign of the Supermen!" Jonathan and Jon-El were portrayed by Jordan Elsass.


Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons was released to home video on October 18, 2022. The animated film stars Jack Dylan Grazer as Jon Kent. Superboy and Robin team up to defeat Starro and save the Justice League.


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The first Superboy trading cards were distributed in 1968 with the Pop-nytt TV Pussel and TV68 Popbilder series from Sweden.

1968 Stora Popbildserien - Stålpojken (Superboy)1968 Pop-nytt TV Pussel - 21 - Stålpojken (Superboy)

The clone Superboy Kon-El first appeared on a promo card for the 1993 DC Bloodlines Trading Cards series. The card is included with poly-bagged editions of The Adventures of Superman #500 (Early June 1993).

Jonathan Lane Kent first appeared in DC Comics: The New 52, released in 2012 by Cryptozoic Entertainment.

Superboy-Prime first appeared in the 2016 War of Light expansion from Dice Masters.

Jonathan Samuel Kent first appeared in 2022 with the Superman Jon Kent: Future State action figure from McFarlane Toys.


1960
1968 Stora Popbildserien : TV68 Popbilder Type 5
1968 Pop-nytt TV Pussel : Black Number Series
1970
1970 Topps : Comic Cover Stickers
1978 Whitman : Superman Card Game
1978 Weetabix : Superman Action Picture-Cards
1980
1981 Festival del Dibujo Animado
1984 Editora Abril : Super-Heróis Em Açào!
1985–1987 Cromy : Super Amigos Match 4
1990
1993 SkyBox : DC Bloodlines
1993 SkyBox : The Return of Superman
1993 Previews : The Previews File
1993 SkyBox : DC SkyCaps
1994 Kellogg's Canada : Superman Better Than Ever
1994 SkyBox Master Series: DC Comics Edition
1994 SkyBox : Superman: The Man of Steel Platinum Series
1995 DC Comics : Pepsi Cards
1995 SkyBox : DC Legends '95 Power Chrome
1995 SkyBox & Kenner : Superman: Man of Steel
1995 Fleer/SkyBox : DC versus Marvel Comics
1996 SkyBox : Superman Holo Series Premiere Edition
1996 Fleer/SkyBox : Kingdom Come Xtra
1996 Fleer/SkyBox : DC Outburst: Firepower
1996-1997 Fleer/SkyBox : DC OverPower CCG
1999 Barcel : DC Super Heroes Cromo Cards
2000
2004-2007 Upper Deck Vs. System : DC Comics
2006 Winning Moves : DC Comics Top Trumps
2007 Rindedos : DC Super Heroes Cartas De Poder
2010
2012 Cryptozoic : DC Comics: The New 52
2013 Cryptozoic : Superman: The Legend
2014 DC Comics Epic Battles Trading Cards
2015–2022 WizKids : DC Comics Dice Masters
2017 Panini MetaX : DC Comics
2019 Blue Ocean : LEGO Batman Trading Card Game
2020
2017-2023 HeroClix : DC Comics
2021 Loma Vista : Dark Nights: Death Metal Soundtrack
2022 Panini Comics : DC Future State
2022-2023 McFarlane Toys : DC Multiverse Data File Cards
2022-2024 Hro : DC Hybrid Trading Cards
2023 Colecciones DKV : Justice League: Comic Arts Vol. 2