DC Database

 Kryptonians are an extraterrestrial humanoid species of beings who originate on the planet Krypton. Kryptonians are basically human in their structure and appearance, but their biology is far more advanced than that of Earth based humans. They are able to utilize energy in their body in far more direct and elaborate manners than Earth based humans do. The source of their immense energy metabolizing abilities lies in their cells, which are said to be the greatest organic power storage units in the known galaxy.[1]

Various dimensional Kryptonians have developed superpowers in regards to Earth-based humans that vary drastically in comparison to their various native dimensions. Super speed, heat vision, x-ray vision, and super breath are among many Kryptonian superpowers.



In the Earth-One dimension, Kryptonians' bodies are able to directly absorb and process yellow solar radiation through their body for a host of effects that would allow them true infinite power levels when fully charged. Red sun radiation would not only interfere with that absorption but directly drain Earth-One Kryptonians of all their powers. A few individuals possessed psychic powers, even in Krypton, namely Faora Hu-Ul, Nadira and Az-Rel. Under a yellow sun these abilities would be augmented.

See also: World of Krypton Vol 1


In the Earth-Two dimension, Kryptonians' bodies had advanced to the point where they are able to produce these energies for effect on their home planet in the red sun system which was very different from most other known Kryptonians. Earth-Two dimensional Kryptonians naturally produce and maintain these power levels regardless of being in a yellow or red sun system. Originally the level of power that Earth-Two Krytonians had in comparison to other dimensional Kryptonians were far lower than those of other dimensions such as the Earth-One dimension. However some Earth-Two dimension Kryptonians have advanced to higher levels but are usually less than those of the other dimensions such as Kal-L and Kara Zor-L. For example, Kal-L was able to travel through time but not through dimensions[2], when his counterpart in Earth-One could cross both; Kal-L could be frozen with absolute zero, Kal-El not; Kal-L would age, Kal-El not.


Earth-Three dimension Kryptonians' bodies gained their superhuman powers through the energies of Kryptonite rather than that of a yellow sun. They would lose their powers if separated from the energies of Kryptonite but the process of leaking was slow and would take time to completely drain off.


Earth-Prime Kryptonians' bodies, like those native to the Earth-One dimension, are able to directly absorb and process yellow solar radiation through their body for a host of effects that would allow them true infinite power levels when fully charged. But unlike Earth-One dimension Kryptonians on which red sun energy would directly drain Earth-One dimension Kryptonians, Earth-Prime Kryptonians would not be charged any longer. While Earth-Prime Kryptonians would also lose their powers in a red sun system, the drainage would not be immediate.

Pocket Universe

 Main article: Pocket Universe

Kryptonians from the Time-Trapper Pocket Dimension functioned almost identically to that of the Earth-One dimension and had nigh-infinite powers.

New Earth

Kryptonians could not leave their planet without dying, since they had a biological link with it. This bio-link was created by the artifact Eradicator in order to preserve the Kryptonian culture. Kal-El was not affected due to a serum administered by his father, Jor-El. When he was rocketed to the Earth, Kal-El, in contact with the Earth's yellow sun, begun to develop fantastic powers at an early age. Each year under the Sol System would increase his powers, until a point where Kal-El became one of the galaxy's most powerful living beings. While he was far from the yellow sun he would gradually lose these powers, but it would take several days for them to disappear.

Prime Earth

Roy Harper Cry for Justice
There's something missing here. This section of the article is incomplete, and contains information, but requires more before it can be considered complete. You can help DC Database by editing this page, providing additional information to bring this article to a higher standard of quality.


In each of the main universes, the aspects of the Kryptonian culture had differences, but in all it is accepted that Kryptonians are a highly technologically advanced people. In Earth-Two's Krypton, children as young as 5 years of age studied engineering[3]. In New Earth's Krypton, the people lived isolated lives, rarely having personal meetings, only communicating through electronic methods. They had no sexual intercourse anymore, and their sons were generated by artificial ways; gathering gametes of a couple into a matrix chamber.[4] Their technology seems to be based on self-grown crystals which made up the vast majority of their planet's surface. Vast amounts of data and information could be stored on relatively small crystals. The Fortress of Solitude is a recreation of Krypton's surface, and also serves as a storehouse for all the knowledge obtained by the Kryptonian race from the 28 known galaxies.

Each Kryptonian family, or what is called a "House," is represented by a crest or symbol, often worn by the head of the house. The House of El, for example, is represented by an "S"-like shape. Coincidentally, Superman wears this same symbol on his costume that serves for dual meanings: his Kryptonian heritage and the "S" for Superman.

Social structure

Kryptonian society mainly places its values on arts, science, military might, and theology, strictly dividing its citizens into the five respective guilds. All citizens must choose to be part of a guild or it will be chosen for them against their will:[5]

  • The Military Guild -governs all forms of martial power and military might on the planet and serves as the backbone of Kryptonian conquering authority. It maintains the martial glory of Krypton.
  • The Science Guild - governs most forms of technology and science on the planet and houses the race's most ingenious minds. The guild is decried as emotionless but has contributed to the race being being a mighty technological power
  • The Artists Guild - governs all forms of art, design, and creativity and believes the most strongly in the religions of the Krypton besides the Religious Guild.
  • The Religious Guild - the most secretive and reclusive of the guilds which serves as the absolute religious authority on Krypton. The guild is governed by priests which represent all Kryptonian Gods, each in turn representing a guild.
  • The Labor Guild - keeps the planet's functions running, taking on all and any manual jobs and ordered to serve all the other guilds. They are commonly the unseen masses of Kryptonians; that are often overlooked and looked down upon as second class citizens by the other guilds. To further the point, they lack any guild representation. and have no say in society affairs. According to Superman, they are tantamount to glorified slaves.


The main religion on Krypton is Raoism in which Kryptonians worship the God Rao as their prime God and the progenitor of their race and world. The religion is henotheistic, as it includes lesser gods that are also worshiped by the respective Kryptonian guilds in addition to Rao, such as Cythonna, Yuda, Nightwing, and Flamebird. A better comparison would be that of Catholicism, with Rao as the monotheistic deity surrounded by the lesser gods as "angels". Outside the standard life cycle events of birth, marriage, and death, Kryptonians have no interaction with their clergy and the clergy rarely interacts with the rest of society.[6] Each of the Kryptonian Guilds honors a specific god, Telle (God of Wisdom/Science), Lorra (Goddess of Beauty/Arts), Mordo (God of Strength/Military), Yuda (God of the Moon/Labor), and Cythonna, who is personally honored by the Religious Guild, while Rao is honored by all.

Justice and methods of incarceration

 Main article: Phantom Zone

When in various versions of Krypton, criminals were sent to the dimension known as the Phantom Zone, in Earth-Two's Krypton criminals were sent in suspended animation on rockets into space.[7] On Earth-One, killing a Kryptonian beast named the Rondor was considered a crime, possibly with capital punishment.[8]


When Krypton was destroyed, it was thought that the entire Kryptonian race was destroyed. This was largely disproven by the survival of Kal-L or Kal-El, who was sent off Krypton to Earth by their fathers right before their source worlds were destroyed. Kal-L grew up on Earth as Clark Kent and eventually discovered his Kryptonian origins, where Kal-El grew up on Earth aware of his Kryptonian heritage. The current incarnation reflects more of Kal-L, understanding that he is biologically Kryptonian but considering himself as a human culturally.

Kal-El and Kal-L were NOT the only survivors of their respective home worlds. In most dimensions, their cousin Kara (Power Girl in Earth-Two dimension and Supergirl in Earth-One dimension and current reality) would also be sent from Krypton to Earth. In some dimensions, the entire city of Argo would also survive the destruction of Krypton either being thrown off the exploding planet or as a space colony away from the source planet. Supergirl, cousin of Superman, also survived Krypton's destruction and made home on Earth. The capital of Krypton, Kandor, was also spared from destruction as it was shrunken by Brainiac.

In the film Superman, young Clark discovers who he is in the Fortress of Solitude, where a crystal hologram of Jor-El tells him "You are the only survivor of the planet Krypton." The last remark also appeared to prove untrue as prisoners of the Phantom Zone, such as General Zod, also survived the destruction of Krypton, as well as Argo City, a Kryptonian colony stuck in a pocket dimension where Kara Zor-El was raised.

Powers and Abilities


  • Kryptonian Physiology: Kryptonian cellular structure is much more dense, resilient, and biologically more effective than human tissue. They do not possess superhuman strength levels despite their enhanced cellular ability without their cellular structure charged with yellow solar energy. Without such charging, their physical capabilities are identical to a human of their height and weight who engages in regular physical activity. As aliens, they possesses several organs whose functions are not yet disclosed or understood, but are believed to be part of or the source of their bio-matrix force field and reclamation aura. Kryptonians' bodies also store energy actively within their bio-cellular matrix as an energy pattern which is linked to their body's electromagnetic field. This energy powers most of their electromagnetic capabilities such as flight, heat vision and other "sight"-based abilities while supplementing their physical abilities to superhuman levels.
    • Solar Radiation Absorption: As Kryptonians, their cells function like a super battery, hyper metabolizing specific wavelengths of radiation as fuel to enable living functions and/or superhuman abilities. Different wavelengths of radiation have different effects on Kryptonian physiology and well being, but their cells cannot absorb or utilize all types of radiation. The wavelength of their home solar system's red sun enables their body to function on an identical level of a healthy human while the Earth's solar radiation in both its raw and filtered state through the Earth's atmosphere acts as fuel to enable all of their powers. Every time Kryptonians use any of their superhuman abilities, their bodies expend absorbed sunlight and they are capable of utilizing any of them to various degrees through controlled circumstances. The solar-based radiation of a foreign blue star proved to increase their known abilities under a yellow sun to a higher degree and enabled additional powers. The existence and constant exposure to proven "healthy" radiation sources are not required for them to live and utilize their powers, but prolonged periods without exposure to them and/or utilizing their powers will require them to recharge in order to live and continue using their powers.
      • Superhuman Strength: The exact limits of Kryptonians' strength are unknown, but they are capable of lifting far in excess of 100,000 tons. Different periods and intensities of exposure to Earth's solar radiation can cause their strength to fluctuate over time. Kryptonians' known feats include lifting an enormous pyramid and flying it to Mars without any strain, and having the strength necessary to shatter small planets. Unhealthy levels of high exposure to specific radiation can exceed Kryptonians' "normal" strength level.
      • Invulnerability: Their bodies are nigh-invulnerable due to their superhumanly dense cellular and anatomical structure as well as their radiating bio-electrical aura. Kryptonians are, under some circumstances, resistant or immune to different forms and levels of lacerations, blunt force trauma, energy-based assaults, falls from great heights, explosions, the cold void of space, toxins and all known diseases on Earth. Their supercharged bio-electric "aura" acts as an invisible "force field" radiating within a few millimeters from their skin. They can willfully utilize their aura strengthening it's power to a greater degree to provide an additional defense against certain levels of physical and energy attacks for a considerably short period of time, but doing so can endanger them should the attempted feat prove inefficient for any reason. Kryptonians utilize their aura by expanding it around a person(s) or object(s) to enable their structural stability when lifting or traveling with them. Kryptonians' invulnerability has been in constant fluctuation over the years. They have been shown surviving the blast of nuclear warheads, entering the Earth's sun and emerging unharmed and surviving the impact of an exploding sun.
      • Longevity/Immortality: Kryptonians can live almost indefinitely if they reside under continuous exposure to an yellow sun's sunlight.
      • Superhuman Stamina: They have the ability to maintain continuous physical actions for an undefined period. Kryptonians are shown to have unlimited stamina if they are consistently exposed to an yellow sun's sunlight.
      • Flight: Kryptonians are capable of flying at supersonic speeds (over two thousand miles per second) in a planetary atmosphere and at faster-than-light speeds while in space. Some of the New Gods theorize that instead of propelling themselves via force of will, they instead somehow move physical time/space around in order to push across the universe at subsonic to superluminal speeds.[9]
      • Superhuman Speed: They are capable of moving, reacting, running and flying at superhuman speeds, when under an yellow sun's sunlight. While not as fast as the Flash on planet Earth, Kryptonians can fly at speeds faster than light and are considered one of the fastest beings in the universe. They can use this power to disarm opponents, catch bullets or shrapnel and cross vast distances in seconds.
        • Molecular Oscillation: Similarly to speedsters, Kryptonians can learn to control their own molecular motion in order to move fast enough that their molecules pass between the spaces of atoms.
      • Superhuman Hearing: Kryptonians have incredible hearing at extreme variances of sound and pitch frequency, allowing them to pick up noises from across the globe. They have shown enough control to block out ambient sounds to focus on a specific source/frequency.
      • Super Smell: On various occasions, Kryptonians have demonstrated that their sense of smell is significantly enhanced to the point they can smell odors across the entire planet.
      • Self-Sustenance: Thanks to their ability to absorb, reprocess and metabolize varied solar ray frequency energies. Kryptonians do not need to eat or sleep (but are still capable of doing so) and don't require oxygen to breathe, which enables them to travel in space and underwater easily.
      • Accelerated Healing: Under a yellow sun, Kryptonians can heal at an accelerated rate.
      • Super-Breath: Kryptonians can create hurricane force winds by blowing, and also chill their breath to freeze a target. They can also breathe in large amounts of air to dispel clouds of gas by exhaling it.
      • Heat Vision: Kryptonians can fire beams of intense heat from their eyes. These beams can be made invisible, allowing them to work undetected, and can be adjusted to affect matter on a microscopic level. Feats include powering up the giant ion planet moving engines, annihilating an army of Doomsday clones in one blast, potentially rivaling the heat of a star and bypassing a target's outer shell, avoiding damage to a person's skull for surgical purposes.
        • Super Flare: Kryptonians are able to discharge all stored solar energy in one gigantic blast.[10] This Solar Flare uses all the yellow sun radiation within cells at once, allowing for an all-out AoE attack.[11] They cannot use it more than once or twice however, as it drains them of all their powers until they can recharge their cells with solar energy. Give or take 24 hours, in that expanse of time, they are rendered virtually human and vulnerable.[12] Others can emit a controlled burst of it in a direct forward wave motion blast affecting a single target focus.[13]
      • Super Vision: Kryptonians also possess a superior sensory arrangement of visual capabilities.
        • Electro-Magnetic Spectrum Vision: They can see into all of the EM Spectrum. Kryptonians can see and identify radio/television and any and all broadcast/transmitted frequencies, allowing them to avoid detection through radar or satellite monitoring methods.
        • Telescopic Vision: The ability to focus their vision to see something at a great distance, without violating the laws of physics.
        • Microscopic Vision: The ability to see extremely small objects and images down to the sub atomic level.
        • X-Ray Vision: The ability to see through anything except lead. Since it is passive, this ability would not generate harmful radiation in the same manner as a focused projection of hard X-rays.
        • 4-D Vision: The underlying capacity to peer beyond the veil of realities for seeing and interacting with things that are incomprehensible to 3-Dimensional beings.[14]
      • Superman Vision: A power coined by Jonathan Kent while he and Superman were on Htrae.[15] Kryptonians can impart their powers onto a non-super powered being in a bright glare of multicolored energy vision which increases the cellular activity of affected targets.[16] Basically giving them Kryptonian like abilities while under a yellow sun for a brief duration of time.[17] This power can only be accessed while under a blue sun however, as it is the focal point of a Kryptonian's new ability development.
      • Mechanokinesis: Under a White sequence star powered by a Sphere of the Gods substance called Genesis. Kryptonians also gain the ability to interface with machines without the need of computerized access or interaction.[18]
      • Teleportation: Through either Genesis or the solar rays of a white dwarf star, Kryptonians are able to alternate space-time in a more direct manner to close the gap between interstellar distances.[19]
      • Super Vocals: A Kryptonian possesses enhanced vocal/audio decibel abilities which they can access through precise muscle control.[20] Enabling their voices to carry over incredible distances at a time, or deliver a wave of amplified sound powerful enough to shatter glass or concrete.[21]
      • Telekinesis & Telepathy: A few Kryptonians have developed psychic powers of their own and have used them to variable degrees.[22][23]




  • Vulnerability to Magic: Kryptonians' biomatrix is their most powerful asset, but the strength of this field is also its greatest weakness. Its permeability to certain wavelengths makes them vulnerable to certain radiations, particularly magical energies whose chaotic electromagnetic or extra dimensional signatures disrupt this force field. Kryptonians' vulnerability to magic varies depending upon the special effects of the magic. No magic seems to be able to directly destroy them unless it comes from a semi-divine or divine source. They can be injured and worn down by magical entities. Magic can have powerful and unpredictable effects on Kryptonians and their magical enemies have often proven to be the most dangerous.
  • Vulnerability to Chi: Lex Luthor and Question argued that, because of Kryptonians' solar based powers, planetary based esoteric and vital forces could have an opposite effect on them. Luthor posited that concentrated doses of such energies could severely cripple a Kryptonian and become fatal, and he attempted to exploit this weakness with the Science Spire, which tapped into the energies.
  • Vulnerability to Kryptonite: Since the destruction of Krypton, its remains (rendered radioactive by the explosion) have been spreading throughout the universe as Kryptonite, a crystalline substance whose specific radioactive wavelength is lethal to Kryptonians native to this reality. The most common form of Kryptonite is Green Kryptonite, and its effect is directly poisonous to them. Kryptonite from other realities does not necessarily have the same effects on all Kryptonians.
  • Vulnerability to Sound Frequencies: Kryptonian physiognomies are incredibly susceptible to hyper and high-hypersonic wave projection, exposures to which been proven to be fatal even with their physically invulnerable frames.[52] Cyborg once even commenting that that his technologies would enable him to simulate a vibrational oscillatory tune that can kill Superman in less than 5sec.[53] Something which The Midnighter exploited using the sonic weapons tech of Modora to shatter a super soldier amalgamate creation of Director Bendix known as The Unified's brain and indestructible skull.[54]
  • Vulnerability to Variable Irradiation: Certain radiological frequencies could hamper a Kryptonian's physical ability to harness and circulate solar radiation, as was the case when surviving a nuclear blast left Kal-El physically emaciated and trying to heal via solar energy caused him agony, or when Vandal Savage implemented similar tactics to weaken both him and his cousin Kara by bathing their cells in a specialized radioactive isotope that impeded their cellular matrix's capacity to absorb and repurpose yellow sunlight.
  • Lead: Kryptonians cannot see through lead with their X-Ray Vision powers.
  • Solar Energy Dependancy: Their abilities will eventually weaken without replenishing their energy reserves with normal (yellow) sun radiation. When exposed to the same red solar radiation as Krypton's red sun Rao, it causes Kryptonians to lose their powers and stamina with a large amount of exposure, until exposure to yellow sunlight reverses this effect. Against potent enough energy absorbents, this dependency can also become a weakness if the yellow solar energies powering them are leeched from their bodies.[55] kal-El once insinuating that Triumph could very well potentially kill him by doing so.[56]
  • Psionics: Most Kryptonians, no matter how powerful they may be, are highly vulnerable to psychic effects, such as telepathy, telekinesis, Illusion Projection and the like. Max Lord was able to trick Superman into believing that Batman and Wonder Woman were both Doomsday with Mind Control, while the Kryptonian clone H'el managed to fray Superboy's genetic structure by pulling it apart with advanced Telekinesis.
  • Invulnerability: The same ability to be nearly impossible to harm when exposed to Earth's sunlight, means that when they are harmed, human medical equipment is rendered useless, as proven when it once took Kilowog (New Earth)'s inventiveness and Superman's heat vision to perform surgery on Powergirl.
  • Vulnerability to Intangibility: A cleaver usage of phasing powers by Leonard Sawyer, the Ghost Soldier, shows a means of bypassing a Kryptonians imperviousness to harm by rapidly shifting between solid and immaterial state in intervals to split the superdense molecular structural latices of the last son of Krypton's flesh. This can also be arsenalized by phasing objects into a Kryptonians body [57]


Type of Government:

Level of Technology:



See also: Category:Kryptonians

See Also

Links and References

  1. Power Girl (Volume 2) #18
  2. Superman Family #186
  3. Superman #61
  4. World of Krypton (Volume 2) #4
  5. Superman: Secret Files 2009 #1
  6. Action Comics Annual #12
  7. Superman #65
  8. Superman #282
  9. Superman/Batman #39
  10. Superman (Volume 3) #38
  11. Supergirl (Volume 6) #7
  12. Batman/Superman Annual #2
  13. Superman: Man of Tomorrow #7
  14. Final Crisis: Superman Beyond #1
  15. Action Comics #855
  16. Action Comics #856
  17. Action Comics #857
  18. Action Comics #1050
  19. Action Comics #1050
  20. Batman/Superman #17
  21. Supergirl (Volume 7) #4
  22. Superboy (Volume 6) #14
  23. Supergirl (Volume 6) #14
  24. Superman (Volume 3) #43
  25. Superman (Volume 2) #122-Superman Vol 1 123
  26. Superman: The Man of Steel #68
  27. Superwoman #1
  28. Superman: The Man of Steel #78
  29. Superman: The Man of Steel #69
  30. Action Comics #733
  31. Superman (Volume 2) #125
  32. Superman Secret Files and Origins #1
  33. Action Comics Annual #9
  34. Superman: The Man of Steel Annual #5
  35. Action Comics #1049
  36. Superman: The Man of Tomorrow #11
  37. Superman: The Man of Steel Annual #5
  38. Action Comics #824
  39. Superman (Volume 2) #203
  40. Action Comics #821
  41. Superman (Volume 2) #203
  42. Countdown: Arena #3-Countdown: Arena Vol 1 4
  43. Action Comics #435
  44. Injustice: Gods Among Us
  45. Justice League Beyond 2.0 #4
  46. Action Comics (Volume 2) #51
  47. Superman (Volume 3) #43
  48. Superman (Volume 3) #49
  49. Adventures of Superman (Volume 2) #16
  50. Adventures of Superman (Volume 2) #16
  51. Adventures of Superman (Volume 2) #16
  52. Injustice: Gods Among Us: Year Two #22
  53. Cyborg #9
  54. Midnighter (Volume 2) #12
  55. Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1
  56. JLA #31
  57. Action Comics (Volume 2) #26-Action Comics Vol 2 29
Superman Red and Blue Vol 1 6 Textless
DC Rebirth Logo

Superman Family member
This character is or was an incarnation of or an ally of Superman, and a member of the Superman Family. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Superman Family members" category.