Superboy was created by Project Cadmus using Kryptonian DNA, intended as a replacement for Superman who died fighting Doomsday. Artificially aged to his mid-teens and implanted with the equivalent of a high school education, Superboy was set free by the Newsboy Legion before he could be implanted with safeguards to control him. One of the boys gave him a leather jacket before he set out into the city, where he had his first encounter with a villain when he found Sidearm attempting to steal money from an ATM.
Don't Ever Call Me "Superboy"!
The clone's arrival in Metropolis coincided with three others taking up the mantle of "Superman". Two of them, "the Man of Tomorrow" (Cyborg Superman) and "the Last Son of Krypton" (the Eradicator), insisted they were the real Superman resurrected, while "the Man of Steel" (John Henry Irons) made no such claim, nor did the young clone who was open about his origin to Lois Lane, thought he insisted on being called "Superman" not "Superboy"! He became enamoured with reporter Tana Moon, who he granted an exclusive live on WGBS, a station under the direction of the unscrupulous Vinnie Edge. Edge arranged for Superboy to go into Suicide Slum where he apprehend a gangster named Steel Hand, and encountered Guardian who gave the cocky kid some friendly advice.
"Superman" loved the limelight and attention from beautiful women, but was blinded by naiveté. His reckless heroics led to the death of a Daily Planet helicopter pilot, for which he was severely reproached for by Steel. Superman's arrogance was knocked down a peg, and he repaid Steel's lesson in humility by saving him from a fire. He was soon approached by Supergirl to work with her at LexCorp. While informally agreeing to Lex Luthor's proposal, the young Superman went back on his word, seduced into an exclusive contract with Rex Leech, effectively persuaded upon meeting his teenage daughter Roxy.
Vinnie Edge, eager to boost ratings, hired an assassin known only as Stinger to attack his Superman on live television. After a destructive battle between the two, Supergirl joined the inexperienced hero's side, forcing Stinger to enact his escape plan of destroying the Hobsneck Bridge. The teen worked together with his female counterpart to rescue as many people as they could from the tragically engineered disaster.
After hearing Coast City had been destroyed, Superman rushed to ground zero where he was duped by the Cyborg Superman into joining him in a mock investigation. The ruse ended in the kid's imprisonment inside Engine City. The Cyborg and his servant, Mongul, used young Superman's image via video feed to trick the Justice League of America into going off world on a wild goose chase. In a surreptitious play for power, Mongul told Superboy Metropolis was their next target for obliteration, hoping it would prompt the captive into escaping and defeat the Cyborg for him. the teen Superman was able to flee back to Metropolis, arriving to find Steel, Luthor, Lois Lane and Supergirl gathered near the harbor. He warned everyone that the Cyborg Superman was responsible and Metropolis was in danger, when a humongous Kryptonian War Suit emerged from the water. The warsuit miraculously housed the real Superman who was still very weakened from his resurrection. While the young clone and Steel were skeptical about his claim, they joined him to attack Engine City, discovering a huge missile capable of wiping out a city inside. The teen clung to the missile as it was launched and managed to alter its course before it reached Metropolis. Despite minor injuries, Superboy returned to the fight in Engine City, saving the life of Steel. With the defeat of the Cyborg, the clone acknowledged that the "man in black" was indeed the one, true Superman. He returned to Metropolis with Supergirl and Steel, where Tana visited him, informing him that she quit her job and was leaving town for good.
With the real Superman back in action, his younger clone relinquished the rights to the name and symbol — to the annoyance of Rex Leech — and decided to leave Metropolis; formally accepting the name Superboy. He decided to go on a world tour in order to establish himself as an individual, returning first to Cadmus where he learned he was not in fact a direct clone of Superman, but rather a human clone genetically engineered to look like Superman and mimic his major powers by way of tactile telekinesis. Despite Director Westfield's initial protests, Cadmus agreed to stop trying to bring him back to the Project. Dubbilex was chosen to act as a chaperone, in part because Westfield tried to hide the fact he had sent Payback of the DNAliens against Superboy earlier that day. Superboy packed up his things and returned his apartment to Clark Kent, officially leaving Metropolis behind.
The Hero of Hawaii
After a few weeks of travelling, Superboy and Dubbilex arrived in Hawaii, joined by Rex and Roxy Leech. After a running battle with Sidearm on the beach, Superboy learned that Tana Moon had moved to Hawaii. Superboy decided to stay on the islands, stylizing himself as the "Hero of Hawaii." Island life was not all that laid back, with Superboy soon encountering the former Fury, Knockout, and fighting the insane Scavenger over the mystical Spear of Lona. Superboy fell ill, and after a brief fight with Silver Sword, he collapsed after the battle and was rushed to Metropolis while the Navy took custody of Silver Sword.
Superboy was diagnosed as suffering from the Clone Plague that was ravaging most of the Underworlders and other Cadmus clones. The first of the few survivors, Superboy was successfully cured thanks to Cadmus' efforts and had to help fight off members of Team Luthor when they tried to steal the cure. He then joined Superman and Supergirl, trying to minimise the damage as much as possible while apprehending Lex Luthor, although most of downtown Metropolis was destroyed. Cadmus suffered major damage and Westfield was murdered by Dabney Donovan, but most of the staff and clones survived. Superboy stayed in Metropolis for a while, battling Parasite and getting caught up in a skirmish with an alternate earth.
To his reluctance, Dubbilex was asked to take in Krypto by Bibbo. On his way back to Hawaii, Superboy was forced to make a pit stop in Smallville, where he met Ma and Pa Kent and the Superboy of yet another reality, who was there because of the effects of the time disruption. The two worked together on another threat to their respective worlds. Superboy also learned that the DNA donor was in fact the late Cadmus director, Paul Westfield, as well as a revelation from Carl Packard that Superboy had been the thirteenth attempt by Cadmus to clone Superman. The first had used Dr. Teng's "Bizarro" technique, resulting in a Bizarro Superboy that was still being held by the lab. The Bizarro escaped, but died shortly thereafter. When Superboy returned to Hawaii, Tana threw him a birthday party, making Superboy officially one year old.
Back in Hawaii, Superboy battled King Shark, B.E.M., Techno and the Silicon Dragons who became consistent foes. The youthful hero gradually matured after each encounter, culminating when a celebrity look-a-like of him was shot and killed by the Dragons who thought the actor was the real Superboy., He also clashed with Aquaman at Pearl Harbor with the King of the Seas putting the kid in his place with the help of a pod of blue whales.
With help from Dr. Emil Hamilton, Superboy acquired a visor that simulated Superman's x-ray, heat and infra-vision powers while the scientist was on vacation in Hawaii, inadvertently assisting Superboy in defeating Sidearm who had returned. Superboy settled in a new residence with Dubbilex and the Leeches called the Compound, located in a secluded spot near the beach. He stopped the assassin Copperhead who had been hired to collect a debt from Rex.
Superboy and Tana officially became a couple around the time Special Agent Sam Makoa decided to organise a task force to go after the Silicon Dragons, which was none other than Amanda Waller's Suicide Squad. Superboy forced himself onto the team, which consisted of Knockout, Sidearm, King Shark, Captain Boomerang and Deadshot. Despite the death of Sidearm, the mission successfully destroyed the lair of the Silicon Dragons, even though their leader, Lady Dragon, escaped after engaging with Superboy one-on-one.
Superboy was informed by state official, Mack Harlin, that he would be required by law to attend school. He enrolled at a local high school where me met some new friends, including Hillary Chang, and discovered that he was reaching the end of the implanted knowledge Cadmus had given him. Superboy managed to balance school and friends with his romance with Tana while still fighting criminals like Loose Cannon and Loophole When Roxy unexpectedly left for Las Vegas, Superboy followed her, sensing there was trouble. Roxy was trying to put some things in her past to rest, since she had decided to enrol as a police office in Hawaii. This meant a confrontation with an old boyfriend who had since become Neon. After a brief battle, Neon blew himself up by detonating a gas station, and Superboy and Roxy returned home.
Superboy battled the amnesiac Valor, who was fighting under the name of Champion. Knockout, alive and well, decided to join the fight, and as Valor regained his memory, he remembered he was dying of lead poisoning. While Knockout took care of Ira Gamboli, who had been manipulating Valor, Superboy helped Valor escape to the Phantom Zone to save his life. Superboy also worked with Green Lantern in a rematch with Scavenger and had a first encounter with the horribly mutated Black Manta.
The Alpha Centurion recruited Superboy into the Superman Rescue Squad, after the Man of Steel was kidnapped by an alien Tribunal. Along with Supergirl, the Eradicator and Steel, the Centurion led Superboy to find Superman. On the journey, Superboy confided to the others he did not trust the Centurion — in fact, he believed he was really the Cyborg Superman in disguise. His suspicions were confirmed when the Centurion abandoned them in the midst of a battle just as the Cyborg Superman arrived soon after. The Cyborg easily defeated the entire team and turned them over to the Tribunal. While a prisoner, Superboy was confined to the same cell as the Centurion which not enough to convince him he was not a traitor. Once he escaped to find Centurion fighting Cyborg Superman, he admitted his mistake. The team freed themselves and rallied behind Superman, who confronted the Tribunal head on. The Tribunal conceded fault and exonerates Superman for his "crime".
When the Legion of Super-Heroes arrived in the past seeking Valor, Superboy explained what happened and accompanied the Legion to the 30th Century. Valor was freed from the Phantom Zone and cured with an anti-lead serum, taking the name M'Onel. The Legion rewarded Superboy for his assistance by making him an honorary Legionnaire, complete with Flight Ring, before sending him home.
Paired with Knockout
Upon returning to his own time after helping the Legion, Superboy found Knockout waiting for him at the Compound. She wants to join him as a partner to sate her desire for battle in a productive way. Together they fought Killer Frost, the Technician, and Silver Sword. Knockout taught Superboy how to use his powers in new and creative ways, such as extending his TK field to cover another person just by touching them. Superboy regained his visor but destroyed it, reasoning that he would just lose it again.
Superboy and Knockout were attacked by the Female Furies, revealing that Knockout was one of their lost "sisters". An intense battle ensued at Superboy's high school, with Superboy and Knockout — joined by Sam Makoa, Dan Turpin, and a contingent of police officers — being severely outclassed. Thanks to Dubbilex, however, the Furies were driven off, leaving much of the high school in ruins, prompting the state to decide that Superboy should be home schooled. Knockout killed a police officer during the fray and the Special Crimes Unit attempted to arrest her. Superboy refused to believe the evidence, however, and after a confrontation with Snare and the SCU at the Compound, the two briefly went on the run from the law, causing Superboy to break up with Tana. This culminated in a battle on the beach between Supergirl and Knockout. After Sparx helped separate the two women, Supergirl ripped the S-shield off Superboy's costume because of his lawlessness. Still, Superboy persisted that he was in the right and everyone just didn't understand Knockout, but her true colours were revealed during a meeting with Victor Volcanum who had risen an island for himself near Hawaii. Knockout first tried to get Superboy to kill him before she finished him off herself. With that barbaric act, Superboy realised that she did not love him the way he thought he loved her. Superboy apprehended Knockout, in part due to the training she had given him on how to use his powers, bringing her in as the island sunk back beneath the waves. Roxy returned his emblems for his costume now that he had come to his senses.
The Ravers and Rough Times
Sparx invited Superboy to the Event Horizon, an intergalactic rave party exclusively for metas and aliens, hosted by a being called Kindred Marx. His first night there, Superboy met Hero Cruz and got into a fight with Kaliber, for which they were teleported to a distant asteroid where InterC.E.P.T. attempted to place the two of them under arrest, also involving the Darkstars. Superboy and Kaliber were transported back to the event before they could be arrested, and another brawl broke out between some Khunds from the Red Shift gang and Aura, which spilled out onto Earth.
Superboy rekindled his relationship with Tana, just before Roxy revealed that she had always loved him. Despite her heartfelt confession, Superboy did not reciprocate her feelings. Roxy could not dismiss her feelings for Superboy so easily. While helping Dubbilex recovered from an injury, an organisation called Agenda sent Amanda Spence to kidnap Superboy. The Agenda used Superboy to create an enhanced clone they referred to as Match, with plans of making an entire army of them. Superboy managed to defeat Match and destroy Agenda's lair, with Spence and the directors all taken into custody.
The Agenda secretly infected Superboy with a virus that began to break down his DNA. It lay dormant for weeks, until a rematch with Copperhead began to manifest symptoms. When S.T.A.R. Labs were unable to cure his condition, Superboy was rushed back to Project Cadmus. Cadmus was only able to slow the condition, not eliminate it. Superman, Supergirl and Steel did all they could to assist, and though Superman was able to locate Match, the potential donor not interested in helping. Amanda Spence suggested a solution, explaining that she needed a DNA donor to "re-zip" the breakdown of Superboy's genetics. Roxy Leech volunteered for the procedure which was successful, except for a side effect which meant Superboy would never age beyond his sixteen year old appearance. Superboy was crushed at the news, having always dreamed of one day assuming the role of Superman. A heart-to-heart with Superman helped ease the pain a little.
Despite what Superman had to say, Superboy was still troubled by thoughts of never growing up. Nightmares plagued him, even as he has to deal with Mo-O and a married couple who pursued thrills by trying to get their picture taken with superheroes. He discovered a magic atoll where there are some "lost boys" who seemingly never grew up, and despite the temptation to stay, he left them.
Things began to break down upon returning to Hawaii. The Legion of Super-Heroes turned up once more, this time angry that Superboy had given away his flight ring to Roxy. Superboy managed to work things out with them as they fought Silver Sword together. However, his constant flirting and "devil-may-care" attitude had been wearing on Tana who was also uncomfortable with the thought that Superboy would stay a teenager forever. Despite trying to prove how responsible he was by recovering the Spear of Lono, Tana ended their relationship.
Superboy decided to travel again to clear his head. He stopped by Jersey City and ended up asking Natasha Irons on a date. Nat had fun, but told him she's not interested in a relationship because she could tell he was still very much in love with Tana.
With Kyle Rayner's help, Superboy finally brought down Silver Sword who had been serving a being known as, Pele, who he believed to be a Hawaiian goddess. But during the conflict against Pele, she threatened innocent bystanders, and Silver Sword realized she was no benevolent goddess. He turned on her which led to his death. Pele was defeated, but Superboy was feeling anything but heroic. More than ever he felt isolated. After a failed publicity stunt and wavering public opinion in Hawaii and abroad, Superboy disappeared without a trace while flying back to Hawaii, caught in a severe storm.
A New Direction with an Old Team
Superboy awoke with amnesia in the Wild Lands, an island of anthropomorphic animal-men. Superboy quickly regained his memory, but feared he was somehow in the distant future. After passing various challenges, Superboy, along with some other humans stranded on the island, were permitted to leave. Superboy befriended the Wild Men who decide to explore the world at large and leave with Superboy. They quickly discovered they were not in the distant future, but only a few months had passed since Superboy's disappearance. The islands had been created by a precursor to Project Cadmus known as the "Project Moreau" created in the '40s. Superboy did have to contend with the fallout of a coup d'état that spilled out into the world at large, but managed to work it out. Back in Hawaii, Superboy learned that most of his friends were gone and decided there was nothing really left for him.
Superboy rejoined Cadmus and began working as a field agent with Dubbilex and Guardian, after leaving Krypto with his friend Hillary Chang. For their first assignment, they traveled to Paris and battled Agenda once again, specifically Director Alpha. They also encounter Grokk the Living Gargoyle and a supermodel named Hex. They took Grokk back to Project Cadmus, where Superboy met the new Director, Mickey "the Mechanic" Cannon, new military liaison, Col. Winterbourne and one of the new ace scientists, Serling Roquette. Superboy was at first happy to be back at the Project, but was distraught when Mickey fired the original Newsboy Legion and their clones.
Superboy became a founding member of the team Young Justice along with Robin and Impulse. The team formed after the three boys decided to have a "camp out" in the old JLA Justice Cave, where they encountered Red Tornado. Despite having some persistent troubles, Superboy, Robin and Impulse became best friends during this time.
Superboy was attracted to Dr. Roquette who was one of the few females at Cadmus, and the only one close to his own age, but she was oblivious at first, harbouring a crush for Guardian. Superboy respond when someone stole the Whiz Wagon and entered the Demolition Run, a lethal cross country race involving all manner of high-tech vehicles. The thief turned out to be Roxy, who was desperate for money to help her father. Even with Superboy and Mickey Cannon helping her, the Whiz Wagon was totaled and Fastbak won the race. Superboy realised the man running the race, Mr. Big, fixed the event so Fastbak would win. Rather than letting Mr. Big walk away with millions, he convinced Fastbak to ask for all profits Big might have made off the deal. Big honours the deal, but promises Superboy he won't forget.
Superman invited Superboy to the Fortress of Solitude where Superboy was able to see Krypton via virtual reality, and after Superman explained how he considered Superboy part of his family, the Man of Steel offered him the Kryptonian name, Kon-El. Superboy tearfully accepted, overjoyed with the simple dignity of having a real name. From Kon-El he adapted "Conner" to use in society.
Superboy was one of the first to explore Hypertime, after a Superboy from an alternate reality arrived at the Watchtower, dying shortly thereafter from injuries. Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman all explained their recent experiences with hypertime and ask Superboy to volunteer for an experiment. During the journey he met his villainous counterpart, Black Zero, from a reality where he had not been freed from Cadmus as a teenager and Superman was never resurrected. Black Zero had become a cruel tyrant in his world before setting out to conquer other worlds he had found via hypertime. He did not understand the resistance he met from the other Superboys and captured them one by one, imprisoning them in his lair. Kon-El led the other alternate versions in an uprising that defeated Black Zero before he returned to his own timeline. During the trip, he deduced that Superman was secretly Clark Kent. Superboy harboured resentment that his closest "relative" had never confided his public identity.
Superboy was ordered to revisit the Wild Lands, escorted by a number of personnel from Cadmus. They landed in Roam and were greeted warmly by King Tuftan (and coldly by his new bride, Nosferata). Winterbourne requested to be taken to the area where he was captured, so Tuftan led the way to the Glowing Swamp. There they found Ratsputin there — as well as King Shark. Tuftan and Winterbourne were almost killed when the experimental Blackbird fighter jet was located and used to impale King Shark before it detonated.
They arrived back at Cadmus to find Guardian attacking the staff, believing them to be Nazis. The delusion was driven by a magical gauntlet that had been unearthed. The Demon arrived, drawn by the eldritch aura of Hyssa's Fist. Etrigan explained the dark artifact drew upon the wearers deepest desires, regrets and inner demons to project the wearer's true colours. Superboy managed to subdue the possessed Guardian, but was suspicious about handing the sinister power over to a bona fide demon. Etrigan desired the mystic item for a spell, inciting Superboy to protect the glove by wearing it himself. He neutralizes Etrigan with his enhanced strength which was met with applause from Dabney Donovan. In a moment of clarity, Superboy noticed he was wearing an outfit similar to Black Zero's. Horrified, Superboy used his tactile telekinesis to destroyed the glove on his hand, causing a huge explosion and cave-in. Etrigan saves Donovan while Guardian recovers Superboy who decides to return to Hawaii to tie up some loose ends.
Superboy decided to drop by Smallville to visit the Kents coincidentally at the same time as Clark Kent. Superboy hinted at Clark's secret which was subtly reciprocated, yet Clark was reluctant to voice it completely, not out of distrust, but because he was afraid that eventually Superman and Clark Kent may no longer be distinguishable.
Superboy arrived in Hawaii with Roquette to discover that he was no longer well thought of among the locals now that a new hero, Kana, had risen. Kana, however, cited Superboy as being his inspiration. Superboy caught up with Sam Makoa, Hillary Chang and even visited Knockout in prison. After one last visit to the Compound, Superboy accepted nothing would ever be like it once was and decides to take Krypto with him back to Cadmus.
Still frustrated that had not confronted Superman about his dual identity, Superboy headed to Metropolis where he met with Lois Lane. At Locomotive Park they encountered the Man of Steel battling a four-armed monster, which was put down by the two heroes. Superman tells him that of all the people who wear the S-shield, Kon-El is the one he feels closest to. Superboy was still unable to speak his mind, but after Superman's departure he alluded to his suspicions, to which Lois responded by saying that everyone, even Superman, needs a little privacy.
Upon arriving back at Cadmus, Superboy was quickly knocked out by the Agenda, using Simyan and Mokkari to create an army of clones. Dubbilex had been compromised by a being known as the Gene-Gnome and Superboy was placed in holding by Amanda Spence alongside his fellow allies. Superboy rallies the forces of Cadmus, along with Grokk, Hex and even Krypto, in a desperate struggle to win back the facility. All they could do, however, was temporarily retreat, as the Gene-Gnome could not only can read their minds, but also coordinate the clone armies. As they fled, they came across Gorr, Growler and Howler who had escaped the Agenda's clutches in Alaska where they also rescued Tana Moon. Realising the Gene-Gnome could not read the minds of non-humans, they planned a counter-attack, leaving Roquette, Tana and Krypto behind. Dubbilex managed to break the Gene-Gnome's control and knock him out as Superboy and allies put the Agenda's army to rout, wrestling control back from Amanda Spence. A holographic message from Director Beta alerted them to a contingency plan in Washington, D.C. While suspecting a trap, Superboy took off to investigate anyway.
A public outcry over Young Justice's actions at Mount Rushmore prompted an assembly of the superhero community at the Capitol. The heroes are all shocked at how Superboy betrayed his comrades to the media until the imposter was exposed as Match when the real Superboy arrived to fight him. As the tension mounted, Director Beta and Klarion the witchboy enacted their plan. Klarion's sorcery reversing the ages of everyone present; the adults reverted to kids while the younger heroes grew to adulthood — all except Superboy, whose ageless genetics kept him at sixteen.
Unable to effect Superboy as it was intended, Klarion's spell began to tear his body apart at a molecular level with confusion. Wonder Girl helped Superboy back to Cadmus only to find Match waiting for them. Director Cannon and Guardian prepared to make another stand against the Agenda clones when Dabney Donovan surprised everyone. Having escaped Simyan and Mokkari, Donovan unleashed a gas containing a virus lethal only to the newly cloned Agenda soldiers. All the evil clones disintegrated as Match escaped with a teleporter. Superboy was taken to the medical bay, Tana at his side, still very much in love with him. Dr. Roquette was able to cure his ageless condition, and by doing so, the spell succeeded in making him a full adult. Superboy embraced Tana with joy, only to have Amanda Spence activate a device around Tana's which executed her. She gloats about her exacted revenge, causing him the pain she felt at her father's death before teleporting away from the enraged Superboy.
Tragedy and Loss
Superboy was devastated by the death of Tana. He barely had time to mourn when a teenage Superman requested his help to defeat Klarion and reverse the spell. Superman finally divulged his secret identity, asking Superboy to contact Lois to assure her everything is alright. Klarion was eventually defeated and everyone is restored to their natural ages. With his youth restored, Superboy mysteriously lost his powers as well, so Guardian encouraged him to take some time to grieve and experience the world as a "normal" kid. He tried to do just that, but in in the wake of his loss, everything he knew seemed to change at once; Dubbilex took a sabbatical from Cadmus, the Wild Men departed, Hex took Grokk to become a bounty hunter, and Heat Wave was now working for Guardian. Superboy decided he still wanted to continue the good fight, so he turned to the Gadget Guru to help him be Superboy once again.
Still in possession of a Legionnaire flight ring and had special training from Guardian, Superboy was given near indestructible, size altering shield fashioned by Gadget Guru. Superboy had barely begun his new training when he was kidnapped alongside Director Cannon and Gadget Guru by Kossak the Slaver. They managed to rally the other slaves in a successful uprising against their hated master. Kossak fled on a shuttle straight for Earth. Superboy pursued him back to Cadmus where he learned Kossak's true intent of retrieving an escaped slave — one that had fused with Roxy Leech! The alien had solar powers which restored Superboy's strength and powers, allowing the him to take down Kossak. Superboy gifted his new shield to Guardian.
The alien life form bound to Roxy used her body to break free from Cadmus, arriving in nearby Kurtzberg. The newly reformed Titans arrived on the scene to contain the situation, but Superboy placed himself between them and Roxy. When Guardian and Heat Wave arrived, a brief battle broke out, before the heroes managed to compose themselves long enough the alien separated from Roxy and returned to space. Superboy told Roxy how he thought of her as family which she reciprocated before leaving with her father.
After the battle, Guardian discovered that Jim Harper, the man he was cloned from, was related to Roy Harper. Superboy invited Guardian to New York City to introduce him to Roy and Lian Harper at Warriors. While they had their "family" reunion, Superboy subdued Negative G.
Slapstick and War
After being teased by some teenage girls and feeling despondent, Superboy fell into a rut. A talk with Superman gave him perspective and decided to shake things up a bit, starting with a new uniform.
Lex Luthor, recently elected President of the United States, appointed Amanda Waller Secretary of Meta-Human Affairs and tasked her to keep an eye on Project Cadmus. After some more training with Guardian, Superboy and Roquette headed to Los Angeles per Waller's orders to size up a situation involving alien activity. Superboy met up with Lobo there and dealt with an alien named Scizmore that fed off of rage. Superboy had to deal with some rage issues himself when he encountered a relentless gang war and released his powers in an incredible burst that destroyed nearly every gun in L.A.
Exhausted from a recent adventure with Batman and Batgirl, Superboy asked Guardian to go to Detroit to fight Shrapnel in his place. Superboy headed to a Florida bayou where he encountered Gorgeous Gilly and was nearly forced to marry her. Fleeing Gilly's clutches, he returned to Cadmus to learn that Guardian was killed in the battle with Shrapnel.
Superboy arranged a team to take down Shrapnel and was contacted by Deadman during the battle who told him that the soul of Guardian could not move on. Guardian's life force persisted as a re-cloned infant as part of a plot to create a whole army of clones based on him. The D.N.Angels were sent to recover the baby, but Superboy fought them off at a supermarket and hid the baby in a friend's house. The next day, he found out that Project Cadmus was shut down by order of the President. The site was empty save for Young Justice who insisted Superboy give them some answers.
After straightening things out with his teammates, Superboy was summoned to Metropolis by Lois Lane to join Supergirl and Steel in Pokolistan. The team met up with Superman and battled Faora, Ignition and Kancer until the General arrived to sucker punch Superman hard enough to break his jaw, forcing the team quickly retreated.
Superboy learned that President Luthor had plans involving Strange Visitor who was held at LexCorp Towers. Catching up with Roquette, Heat Wave and the prepubescent Guardian, Superboy led the team on to extract Strange Visitor from a machine, but she angrily chided them that she was not a prisoner, but had came willingly. Talia Head, now the head of LexCorp, entered to tell them they had violated U.S. law by stealing government property (Guardian). General Good arrived with the D.N.Angels to placed them under military arrest.
Superboy and the others were taken prisoner on a huge spaceship in orbit. General Good explained that he planned to create an entire army of clones based on Guardian to be used as soldiers in an upcoming war. Superboy escaped to battles the D.N.Angels and a now cybernetically enhanced Amanda Spence, until the Angels had a crisis of conscience and defected. Spence who boasted she no longer needed to eat or breathe was ejected into space by Superboy. He freed the almost adult Guardian who decided to destroy the other clones. The victory is short-lived as everyone noticed Apokolips in Earth's orbit accompanied by a vast armada. General Rock arrived to place Good under arrest and told Superboy to consider himself drafted.
Superboy's involvement in the war began by aiding injured heroes before Young Justice was recruited by President Luthor. Superboy led them on a special assignment to Apokolips where the team was captured by Granny Goodness. The young heroes eventually made it back to Earth as one of the last groups to be accounted for. The war deeply impacted Superboy, having witnessed much death and destruction, as well as the scarring to some of his closest friends. Superboy sought rest at the Kent's, but was troubled by nightmares for some time.
End of an Era
With Cadmus shut down and Wonder Girl insisting he leave Young Justice HQ, Superboy relocated to Metropolis becoming the "super" at a tenement building called Calvin Gardens where a local gang called the Run Riot Boys kept harassing the neighborhood. He also met a young woman named Trixie.
Superboy threw a housewarming party which Wonder Girl attended to find Superboy enamored with Trixie, not realizing her boyfriend, Wipeout, led the Run Riot Gang. Wipeout ordered one of the new members, Cooper, to kill Superboy. Cooper befriended Conner, initially intending to betray him, but could not go through with it when the gang attacked the building. Scavenger also resurfaced but Superboy convinced him to call a truce. Superboy agreed to meet with him at the Ace o' Clubs, but a fight with the Run Riot Gang made him stand Scavenger up. and actually involved the tenement block being destroyed in a battle. Superman took Kon-El stay with his parents in Smallville, which he did for some time.
The New Teen Titans
When Young Justice dissolved, Superboy was inducted into the Teen Titans, but began to doubt himself and his abilities after learning that Lex Luthor, not Paul Westfield, was the original donor of his DNA. He retreated back to the Kent farm for longer period of time.
Main article: Infinite Crisis
Superboy-Prime reappeared on Earth who incited a fight with Kon-El. Superboy was greatly outmatched until he called in some allies who pulled Superboy-Prime into the Speed Force, but not without casualties. Superboy was injured and needed to be taken in for medical treatment. Conner was forced to battle Superboy-Prime again after returning even more powerful with a power-suit. To stop the madman's plan to create a new multiverse, Conner smashed Prime into his own diabolical tower to destroy it. Superboy-Prime survived the assault, but Conner was tragically killed beneath the collapse rubble. Conner was buried in Metropolis beneath a statue commemorating his sacrifice, next to the graves of Kal-L and Lois Kent. A Cult of Conner formed hoping for his return as Superman once did.
Superboy was reanimated in the 30th Century by the Legion of Super-Heroes. Brainiac 5 used the Kryptonian technology that reanimated Superman after he was killed by Doomsday, combined with a lock of Lex Luthor's hair to restore his life in order to help them defeat Superboy-Prime and his new Legion of Super-Villains. Conner later returned to the 21st century along with his friend Impulse.
The Return of Superboy
- See also: Adventure Comics#Revival
Returning to live with Martha Kent, who was overjoyed to take the young boy in after her husband's passing, Conner enrolled at Smallville High School and began keeping a journal of everything Superman had done as a costumed hero with checklist titled, What Did Superman Do? He and Bart rejoined the Teen Titans, and Conner symbolised the team being "stacked" again by destroying his memorial statue outside of Titans Tower West.
After visiting Lex Luthor's childhood home in Smallville, Superman arrived to speak with Conner about his desire to understand his "other father". Superman told Conner not to worry about Luthor, taking the burden of the megalomaniac upon himself. Conner returned home and created a similar checklist in his notebook entitled, What Does Lex Luthor Do? Conner checked off, "lies to Superman."
In his attempt to confront his shared legacy, he accepted a date with Wonder Girl. Conflicted between opening his heart to his girlfriend (being honest like Superman), and deliberately lying to avoid delicate subjects (deceptive like Luthor), Conner ultimately chose to share his fears and desires with Cassie; a desire to find himself by exploring both his legacies to define his true self. Cassie was touched, and despite her initial doubts, was compelled to admit her brief bond with Tim Drake. Conner quickly forgave her, considering he was dead at the time.
Main article: Blackest Night
While visiting the grave of Jonathan Kent, Conner, Clark and Martha were targeted by the Black Lantern Superman and Lois of Earth-Two. While Superman battles Kal-L, Conner encounters the resurrected Psycho-Pirate who manipulated him into attacking Superman. However, Conner managed to come to his senses when Kal-L was on the verge of ripping out Superman's heart. Using his tactile telekinesis, Conner pushed Kal-L away from Superman. Conner quickly removed Psycho-Pirate's Medusa Mask and used its emotional control to attract the black rings from their hosts, reducing them to lifeless corpses once more.
Superboy, along with the few available members of the Teen Titans and Justice League, arrived at Coast City to battle Nekron. Despite being resurrected, Conner's experience with death made him susceptible to the black rings which transformed him into a Black Lantern. He and Superman were used to confront Lex Luthor, who been deputised as an Orange Lantern. The Black Lantern Superboy tried to break the hold of Nekron's influence when he was faced with Wonder Girl, managing to temporarily gain free will, summoning Krypto and explaining his dilemma to Cassie.
The battle moved to the Fortress of Solitude, where Conner's original body was in the rebirth matrix. The ring, confused and confronted with unexpected resistance from Conner, left its host to attach itself to his corpse, but Superboy awoke his super-breath ability to freeze the ring, which Cassie hurled into space.
Main article: New Krypton
Conner worked with Mon-El when he filling in for Superman on New Krypton. Together they joined a secret 21st Century incarnation of Legion of Super-Heroes. They travelled to New Krypton to help defeat Brainiac without destroying the bottle cities that would one day join the United Planets and were the future homes of the members of the Legion of Super-Heroes.
War of the Supermen
Main article: War of the Supermen
Superboy, Guardian, Steel, Nightwing, Flamebird and Krypto joined forces to expose and stop General Lane's plans to wipe out the Kryptonians. Conner saved the JLA and Supergirl from Non and Ursa, imprisoning them in the Phantom Zone. Soon after, he and Krypto backed Superman against Zod and his soldiers, but Zod injured Krypto causing Conner to abandon the fight to save his dog. He left the Phantom Zone Projector to Superman, who used it to imprisoned Zod and himself in the Phantom Zone. Superman was later freed by Nightwing.
Titans and Smallville
Static was kidnapped while visiting his hometown of Dakota City, and the Teen Titans headed there to rescue him. Frustrated by the lack of progress the team was having, Beast Boy phoned Cyborg for help. The Justice League member angrily told Beast Boy to handle his own problems, but later rethought his position and contacted Conner and Bart about returning to the Titans. In Dakota, Holocaust easily defeated the Titans until Conner, Bart and Cyborg arrived to reinforce them. Conner desperately tried to defeat the villain, but Holocaust proved powerful enough to not only absorb almost all of Conner's attacks, but also injure the Kryptonian with his own. Conner and Bart distracted Holocaust long enough for the other Titans to escape, and eventually the combined might of the entire team was able to stop him. On the trip back to San Francisco, Conner wanted to know if Cassie was ignoring him. The two briefly tried to make their relationship work, but Conner decided to leave her.
Conner continued living in Smallville, where her explained to his friend Simon Valentine that if Superboy and Simon were to remain friends, Conner couldn't be seen with him. Conner avoided Lori Luthor, because her family ties, but she eventually discovered his identity after an attack by the Prime Hunters. Conner was also attacked by Parasite and Poison Ivy who wrecked the town, so Conner and Bart conceived an exhibition race between themselves to raise funds. Conner later become a founding member the Supermen of America.
Main article: Convergence (event)
Before Zero Hour, Conner's Metropolis was taken by Brainiac and Telos, and placed under a dome, losing his powers for a year. When his powers returned, he fought the Superman, Flash and Red Robin of Earth-22. During the fight, he accidentally injured Lois Lane and threw the fight in recompense.
Powers and Abilities
- Kryptonian Physiology: Under the effects of a "yellow" sun, Superboy possesses the same potential powers as an average Kryptonian. These include:
- Solar Energy Absorption: Under optimal conditions, this is the main source of Superboy's super powers as they are contingent upon exposure to solar radiation from a yellow sun star system. His biological make up includes a number of organs which lack analogues in humans and whose functions are unknown. It is believed that between one or more of these and his bio-cellular matrix, "yellow" solar energy is stored for later use. This allows for the use of these powers to fade when yellow solar radiation is not available instead of immediate failure.
- Heat Vision: Superboy can, as a conscious act, fire beams of intense heat at a target by looking at it. He can vary the heat and area affected.
- Super-Hearing: Superboy's hearing is sensitive enough to hear any sound at any volume or pitch. With skill and concentration, he can block out ambient sounds to focus on a specific source or frequency.
- Enhanced Vision: Superboy's vision processes the entire electromagnetic spectrum as well as allowing vast control over selective perception and focus.
This umbrella ability includes the following:
- Electromagnetic Spectrum Vision: Superboy can see well into most of the electromagnetic spectrum. He can see and identify radio and television signals as well as all other broadcast or transmitted frequencies. Using this ability, he can avoid detection by radar or satellite monitoring methods. This also allows him to see the aura generated by living thing.
- Telescopic Vision: This is the ability to see something at a great distance, without violating the laws of physics. Though limited, the exact extent of the ability is undetermined. In function, it is similar to the zoom lens on a camera.
- X-Ray Vision: This is the ability to see through any volume of matter except lead. Superboys can see things behind a solid, opaque object as if it were not there. He can focus this ability to "peel back" layers of an object, allowing hidden image or inner workings to be observed. The exact type of energy perceived—such as x-rays, cosmic rays, or some other energy invisible to normal humans—is unclear. This ability perceives an ambient energy source though, it does not involve the eye projecting a concentrated, possibly toxic, beam to be reflected back from objects.
- Microscopic Vision: This is the ability to see extremely small objects and images down to the atomic level.
- Infrared Vision: Superboy can see with better acuity in darkness, and to a degree in total darkness.
- Flight: Superboy is able to manipulate graviton particles to defy the forces of gravity and achieve flight. This ranges from hovering to moving in any posture, in any direction.
- Invulnerability: Due to the interaction of his dense molecular structure and supercharged bio-electric aura, Superboy is nigh-invulnerable to extreme energy forces. In addition, his extends this protection against toxins and diseases.
- Superhuman Stamina: Superboy is able to maintain continuous strenuous physical action for an indefinite period of time. This based on his body converting yellow solar radiation directly to energy, but is limited by physiological and psychological needs to eat, drink, and sleep.
- Superhuman Strength: Superboy's strength is augmented by yellow solar radiation interacting with the greater than human density, resilience and biological efficiency of his musculature. His strength is more an act of conscious will on energy fields than actual physical strength. It is this act of conscious will that enables him to perform physical feats that are beyond the mere application force, such as moving a mountain top without said rock crumbling under its own mass.
- Superhuman Speed: Superboy is able to move at incredible speed by sheer force of will. This extends to his perceptions and allows for feats such as catching bullets in mid flight as well as covering vast distances in little or no time.
This also confers:
- Super-Breath: Superboy is able to create hurricane force winds by exhaling air from his lungs. He can chill the air as it leaves his lungs to freeze targets. He can also reverse the process to pull large volumes of air or vapor into his lungs.
- Longevity: Superboy can live longer than regular humans, remaining at his prime as long as he was under the exposure of the "yellow" sun.
- Tactile Telekinesis: At first, Superboy's only superpower was "tactile telekinesis", a telekinetic force field that surrounded his body as a protective shield allowing him to simulate Superman-level speed, strength, flight and invulnerability. The TK field also let Superboy break free of an opponent's grip by pushing the field outward to force the opponent away. Other creative uses include rendering an opponent immobile by extending the TK field as long as they were both standing on the same ground.
- Telekinetic Superhuman Strength: He, like Superman was able to lift almost anything he could conceive of. He lifted the world's largest yacht and threw a football at Mach 5. Objects lifted with his telekinetic strength did not crumble under their own weight or internal stresses. This was not super strength in the traditional sense, as Superboy had been bound with chains that were surrounded by an energy field which he was unable to escape because he could not directly affect the chains with his power. It was stated he could lift a battleship.
- Telekinetic Flight: Superboy was able to fly at high supersonic speeds using a reflexive action of his telekinesis, literally dragging himself through the sky. Concentration was required to maintain great speeds which could reach roughly speeds of Mach 5.
- Telekinetic Force-Field: By creating a field around his body Conner was able to resist or reduce injury from non-energy based attacks by causing the object to be deflected from his personal force field. Bullets and shrapnel were easily deflected. This field did not repel gases or energy based attacks as well, though his skill in deflecting energy attacks improved.
- Telekinetic Force Blasts: Superboy also learned that he could shoot energy blasts from his hands from Knockout. The blasts he can shoot are more powerful than supermans heat vision.
- Telekinetic Super Hearing: Superboy's TK allows him to hear sounds from far away and through glass.
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced): Conner was trained by Guardian during his time at Cadmus. Not to mention being trained by Project Cadmus, during his time being powerless. While in the future with the Legion of Super-Heroes. Connor spent his time training with the Karate Kid. Conner was also trained by the Teen Titans. Conner has successful defeated 100 warrior slaves without the use of his powers. Kon-el even managed to stalemate Orion (Servants of Darkness). Who had all of his warrior skills similar to the original Orion, but was more savage.
- Kryptonian Physiology: Under the effects of a "yellow" sun, Superboy possesses the same potential weaknesses as an average Kryptonian. These include:
- Vulnerability to Red Sun Radiation: The damage from the Red Sun seems to be less effective on him than the full Kryptonians.
- Yellow Sun Processing: Because Superboy absorbed less solar energy than Superman as an adult, Superboy was unable to process as much yellow sun energy as Superman could; as a result, overexerting his powers could spell his death, as his body would literally begin to feed on itself, unable to absorb solar energy fast enough to restore itself.
- Arrogance: Conner has always had always had a bit of a hubris when it came to himself, due to half his DNA coming from Lex Luthor. This issue had got him into disquiet situations multiple times during the early parts of his superhero career. Conner has learned to be more humble and embrace humility more often, due to the death of his first girlfriend Tana Moon, nearly losing Guardian and almost killing the Teen Titans thanks to Lex Luthor. But Conner's ego still has resurfaced a few times, that has inconvenience him in stressful situations. Which has allowed someone like General Zod to get the better of him in combat.
- Visor: (Formerly) Superboy briefly had a visor, given to him by Emil Hamilton, that allowed him to simulate Superman's vision powers. He lost the visor and it was recovered by the Technician. When he got it back, Superboy destroyed it, rationalizing that he would probably lose it again somehow and then it would put others at risk.
- Originally, Superboy had no name besides "Superboy". Later, Superman gave him the Kryptonian name "Kon-El", to show that he considered him family. He adopted the secret identity of "Conner Kent".
- Clark considers Conner to be his little brother.
- Superboy was also known as Experiment 13 and Project: Superman.
- Conner was in love and in a relationship with Wonder Girl. He previously dated Tana Moon.
- Conner was best friends with Tim Drake and Bart Allen.
- Conner and Supergirl had a close friendship. Kara even considered Conner her "cousin" just as much as Kal-El.
- Superboy's favorite TV show is Wendy the Werewolf Stalker.
- Conner had a mutual crush on Cassandra Cain and even ended up being her first kiss, but the two quickly decided to just remain friends.
- Adventures of Superman (Volume 1)
- Superboy (Volume 4)
- Superboy (Volume 5)
- Superboy (Volume 6)
- Young Justice (Volume 1)
- Teen Titans (Volume 3)
- Teen Titans (Volume 4)
- Infinite Crisis (Volume 1)
- Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds
- Adventure Comics (Volume 2)
- 641 Appearances of Kon-El (New Earth)
- 248 Images featuring Kon-El (New Earth)
- 70 Quotations by or about Kon-El (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Kon-El (New Earth)
- Teen Titans (Volume 3) #26
- Green Lantern (Volume 3) #69
- DC Comics Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
- Adventures of Superman #500
- Superboy (Volume 4) #0
- Adventures of Superman #501
- Superman: The Man of Steel #23
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- Action Comics #689
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- Superman: The Man of Steel #25
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- Superman (Volume 2) #82
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- Superboy (Volume 4) #1
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- Adventures of Superman #513
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- Superman (Volume 2) #107
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- Superman: The Man of Steel #51
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- Adventures of Superman #529
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- Superboy (Volume 4) #21
- Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 4) #74
- Legionnaires #31
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- Superboy and the Ravers #1
- Superboy (Volume 4) #32
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- Young Justice #1
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- Superman (Volume 2) #155
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- Young Justice #17
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- Superboy (Volume 4) #74
- Sins of Youth: Superman, Jr. and Superboy, Sr. #1
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- Superboy (Volume 4) #75
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- Teen Titans (Volume 3) #2
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- The Legion Secret Files #3003
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- Who's Who in the Legion of Super-Heroes #6
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- Adventure Comics (Volume 2) #10
- Blackest Night: Superman #3
- Young Justice #33
- Batgirl #41
Superman Family member
|Teen Titans member |
This character is or was primarily a member of the younger superhero team known as the Teen Titans, in any of its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Teen Titans members" category.
Legion of Super-Heroes member
|White Lantern Corps member|
This character is or was a member of the White Lantern Corps, guided by the Life Entity to wield the White Light of Life.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the "White Lantern Corps members category."
Young Justice member
|Justice League member|
This character is or was a member of the Justice League of America, or the Justice League in any of its various incarnations, sworn by a duty to act as guardians of America and the world by using their skills and/or superpowers to protect Earth from both interstellar and domestic threats.