"Return of the Forgotten Superman": Superman recalls a past in which he fell to earth in Kansas, said goodbye to his parents, and moved to Metropolis to work at the Daily Planet. After years of fighting threats as Superman and with the [[Justice League (Prim
- My suggestion is you find a way to bring Kent back to life. The world needs all the heroes it can get. And if you don't mind. I'd like to get back to work.
- — Batman
Synopsis for "Return of the Forgotten Superman"
Superman recalls a past in which he fell to earth in Kansas, said goodbye to his parents, and moved to Metropolis to work at the Daily Planet. After years of fighting threats as Superman and with the Justice League, he married Lois Lane. This memory is confusing for Clark, and he begins to realize that this is not reality. He and Lois aren't married, and she is actually dying. His mind is being manipulated by Captain Comet.
Snapping out of it, Superman rushes to Lois' side, as she has been gravely injured since she was thrown into the hood of a car by Captain Comet. Lois' niece Susie is concerned for her, but Captain Comet drags her away, explaining that he has come for her specifically, to take her away from this world of doomed homo-sapiens. Susie is what he calls a neo-sapien, of which there are only five known, and their advanced physical and mental abilities place them - he thinks - far above humans like Lois. Shrugging him off, Susie places her hand on Lois' forehead, promising to take away her pain.
Comet becomes frustrated, as he believes that nothing should prevent him from retrieving the girl. He throws a car at Superman, endangering the human lives over which he took control in order to attack the Kryptonian in the first place. Fortunately, Superman takes the brunt of the impact, and dares Captain Comet to attack him again - prompting the telepath to throw more cars at him. Turning to Susie, Comet begs her to come away with him, but she responds that her aunt's life is more important to her than anything he promises, and if he wants her to come with him, he will have to save her. Coldly, he responds that she is merely an animal, whose physiology is too simple to bother with. He warns that if she doesn't come with him, she will be found by bad, bad people.
He shows her his past, having been born on the same day that the Kryptonian Rocket crashed in Kansas. He was born with advanced mental abilities to John and Martha Blake. They named him Adam and his powers manifested at a young age. When his mother died, his religious father blamed his powers for her death, and he was cast out of his home. After making a few appearances as the Blake Farm Ghost - the forgotten Superman - Adam was discovered by a group of aliens called the Oort-Kind. These creatures search the universe for neo-sapiens in order to make a strong warrior. Superman interrupts to reveal that he has seen all that Adam showed Susie via the two-way mental link between them. Angrily, he complains that abducting a child is not the act of a man with good intentions. In response, Captain Comet blasts Superman across the street into a building. He promises Susie that she will soon have similar power.
Nearby, members of Johnny Clark's Engine 1938 realize that the truck has been split in two, and their friend Bo Amendola has been eaten alive from the inside out by a Metalek. Johnny Clark's helmet, meanwhile, lies empty in the street, and they are convinced that he was vaporized. Thus, Superman's most recent civilian identity has effectively been killed off.
Superman recovers and warns Captain Comet that his telekinesis and telepathy are rendered ineffective against him if he empties his mind and acts only on instinct. Relentlessly, Superman beats Captain Comet until the neo-sapien is forced to pull a gun that shoots psychic bullets. However, he is blinded by Susie's own power, as she balefully warns that he should have left her aunt Lois alone, and refuses to go with him. As Superman holds him, Comet screams that he is merely there to save them all, and escapes in the Cometeer. Susie points out that the ship is already too far to chase, but there is still time to save Lois, if they hurry.
Despite the anaesthetizing effect of Susie's power, Lois has a short time left to live. Superman rushes her to the hospital, but the surgeons lack the facilities to save her before it would be too late. Desperately, Superman rushes off to the library, and uses his super-speed to read every medical book he can find within. Then, he returns to the hospital, and performs the surgery himself, using his powers to make the process more efficient. Thankfully, Lois recovers.
Elsewhere, Johnny Clark's coworkers discover that the only Johnny Clark to have come from the Keystone City Fire Department, as he had claimed, died years ago.
Superman changes into his plain clothes in an abandoned office, where he is interrupted by Batman. He had been looking into a way around Superman's identity crisis, and ended up retrieving a set of statistics and data indicating that reporter Clark Kent had had a measurable, positive effect on the world, merely by his reporting alone. With this, Superman realizes that Clark Kent was a hero in his own right, and needs to be revived.
Clark returns to his old apartment, and Mrs. Nyxly gladly gives him back the keys, having failed to rent it out to anyone else in the meantime. She points out that he will have difficulty returning to his old identity after his friends have already grieved for his death. They would hate him for his deceit if he came back now. Cryptically, she resolves that she will have to erase their memories of his death using one of three wishes. Clark is confused, but she explains that she is not of this world. She has been on earth for the last 57 years, waiting to help him, but her true home is the Fifth Dimension. Her full name is Nxlygsptlnz, and she is the daughter of King-Thing Brpxz, and wife to Mxyzptlk. A jealous rival had killed the king and injured her husband, and had grown to hate Superman so much that he began a campaign that would place everything he loved in danger. That man is Lord Vyndktvx, and it is through his plan for revenge that nearly every bad thing in Clark's life was set in motion. There is still hope, though, that Clark can stop his plan. Seeing that he is still confused, she decides to show him what she means.
Elsewhere, Susie has been returned safely to her parents, who have come to realize that not all of the things they'd thought she had made up were the simple imaginings of a little girl. As she sleeps in her bed, Lord Vyndktvx approaches, intent on corrupting her.
Appearing in "Return of the Forgotten Superman"
- Martha Kent (In dream sequence only)
- Jonathan Kent (In dream sequence only)
- Jimmy Olsen (In dream sequence only)
- Perry White (In dream sequence only)
- Justice League
- John Blake (Flashback only)
- Martha Blake (Flashback only)
- Bo Amendola (Appears only as a corpse)
- Doctor Sloane
- George Tompkins
- The dream that Captain Comet gives to Superman resembles his past in the Pre-Flashpoint timeline.