Mxyzptlk was born into the fifth dimension and lived there until he became bored with his relatively uneventful life. Seeking exploration and entertainment, Mxyzptlk left and began to explore other realities. Unfamiliar with so-called "lower lifeforms" of other dimensions, Mxyzptlk began experimenting with some of them, testing them in many different ways, some of which were later shown not to have survived Mxyzptlk's tests. Upon one of his trips to the third dimension, Mxyzptlk met his match in Superman. Frustrated that he could not enrage Superman and make him suffer, Mxyzptlk would return many times trying to engage Superman in ever more dangerous and destructive traps. He would continue to do this until the ruling members of his home dimension decided to curb his powers as Mxyzptlk had exceeded even their tolerable levels by engaging in "pranksterism exceeding the bounds of art".
Mister Mxyzptlk would frequently appear in the third dimension and cause grief for Superman, creating a series of magical pranks until such a point wherein the Man of Steel is able to trick the magical imp into saying his name backwards (Kltpzyxm). This would usually banish Mxyzptlk to the 5th Dimension for 90 days.
Mr. Mxyzptlk's first encounter with Superman happened many years ago while he was Superboy and living in Smallville. Running away from home the young Mxyzptlk would travel to the 3rd Dimension and decide to pass the time by playing pranks on Superboy, ultimately creating an illusion of the Boy of Steel's father Jor-El and tricking Superboy into leaving Earth. Mxyzptlk would be betrayed by his own father, Fuzastl, who would impart Superboy in the knowledge on how to send Mr. Mxyzptlk back to the 5th Dimension, causing a long running feud between Mxyzptlk and his father.
Mr. Mxyzptlk would return to the 3rd Dimension when Superboy and Krypto are terrorized by the Kryptonite Kid and his dog. After banishing the lethal foe to the 5th Dimension, Superboy learns that Mr. Mxyzptlk saved the Boy of Steel's life only because he couldn't have fun tormenting Superboy if he was dead. Later, in a bid to win the role of valedictorian for his high school class, Mr. Mxyzptlk travels back to the 3rd Dimension to cause trouble, while at the same time banishing Superboy and Lana Lang to the 5th Dimension. Superboy decides to become a prankster himself, surpassing Mxyzptlk himself and tricks the denizens of the 5th Dimension to transport their errant imp back to his home dimension.
On his next visit to the 3rd Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk arrives during a time when Superboy is off on a mission with the Legion of Super-Heroes in the 30th Century and that Krypto has been left to defend Smallville. The Dog of Steel manages to trick Mxyzptlk to say his name backwards by disguising himself as a dog from the 5th Dimension with a collar that has Kltpzyxm printed on it. In his next attempt to torment Superboy, Mr. Mxyzptlk has his name changed to Mxpypxm, a palindrome, making it impossible for him to be banished from Earth. Impossible, that is, until Superboy uses amnesia dust on Mxyzptlk making him forget his new name and tricks him into saying his old one backwards. Returning to Smallville to torment Superboy again, Mxyzptlk becomes annoyed by the fact that Lex Luthor is siphoning his powers. Superboy banishes Mxyzptlk to the 5th Dimension once more before eliminating Luthor's stolen powers.
When the Legion of Superheroes require the hair of a magical creature in order to reverse a spell cast against their members by Hag, they travel to the 20th Century to enlist the help of Superboy to travel to the 5th Dimension and trick Mr. Mxyzptlk into giving up his hair. It is in this encounter how Mr. Mxyzptlk ended up losing his hair and would appear bald in later years.
Tormenting the Man of Steel - the Early Years
Subsequently, Mr. Mxyzptlk would not torment Superman again until his adult years when when the Man of Steel had relocated to Metropolis. How many prior encounters Mr. Mxyzptlk had with Superman prior to his first recorded appearance in Superman's adult life is unknown, and many of these encounters may mirror that of his Earth-Two counterpart Mr. Mxyztplk. In his first recorded appearance in Superman's adult life, Mr. Mxyzptlk torments Superman more well prepared than in previous exploits. Employing a hat that signals an alarm whenever he is about to say his name backwards, Mxyzptlk avoids saying the damning word. Although Superman removes that hat, Mxyzptlk is stricken with a head cold and loses his voice. Superman finally manages to foil Mr. Mxyzptlk by making him watch newsreel footage of himself where the audio is looped backward, when the recording says his name backwards in his own voice Mxyzptlk is banished back to the 5th Dimension.
Having gotten a girlfriend, Mr. Mxyzptlk would try to impress her by traveling to the 3rd Dimension once more to get a Superman Robot for her. In order to do so, he uses his powers to make Superman to play pranks on his friends until he agrees to give Mxyzptlk what he wants. However, Superman offers Mxyzptlk three robots to choose from: An adult, teenage and baby versions of himself. This ultimately ends up being a trick to get Mxyzptlk to say his name backwards when he reads off gigantic toy blocks that spell out the magic word. Mxyzptlk next tries an alternate approach at tormenting Superman by targeting Jimmy Olsen instead. Disguising himself as a Leprechaun named O'Rourke, Mxyzptlk succeeds in tormenting both Jimmy and Superman without betraying his identity. However, he ends up accidentally saying his name backwards before the two can figure out his double identity. Mr. Mxyzptlk soon finds a rival in Bat-Mite when he attempts to torment Superman, Batman and Robin. Ultimately Bat-Mite proves to be too bothersome to Mxyzptlk and the imp returns to the 5th Dimension.
When Mr. Mxyzptlk's interference prevents Superman from making an appearance at the Smallville orphanage, Superman gives Mr. Mxyzptlk a taste of his own medicine by traveling to the 5th Dimension and tormenting the imp there. On another trip to the 3rd Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk becomes infatuated with Lucy Lane and attempts to court her by turning Jimmy Olsen into the wolf man again. This plot is foiled when Mxyzptlk's 5th Dimensional girlfriend Miss Gzptlsnz would arrive, change Jimmy back to normal, and send her wayward boyfriend back to their home dimension. This doesn't stop Mxyzptlk from tormenting Jimmy Olsen in the future, as he returns once again in another bid to steal Lucy away from Jimmy by banishing Jimmy to time to Arthurian times. Jimmy manages to return to his own time and banish Mxyzptlk back to his home dimension.
Giving up on romance and attempting to get back to tormenting Superman, Mr. Mxyzptlk returns to the 3rd Dimension. This time his hat is blown off by a strong wind and gets into the possession of Jimmy Olsen. Also during this time Mr. Mxyzptlk would be struck by an errant ray from Bizarro's duplicator ray creating a Bizarro Mxyzptlk, later this Bizarro Mxyzptlk would cause grief in Bizarro's life by endowing Bizarro Lois Lane with super-powers. When the real Mr. Mxyzptlk would come across Htrae he would use his powers to reverse these effects.
In another attempt to prevent Superman from tricking him into saying his name backwards, Mr. Mxyzptlk employs an old trick: Changing his name. Having his name legally changed to John Trix for 72 hours, Mr. Mxyzptlk torments Superman until the Man of Steel, with the help of the Superman Emergency Squad trick Mr. Mxyzptlk into saying his new name backwards when the Squad disguises themselves as Mxyzptlk. Mxyzptlk next returns and uses his powers to make Superman date and eventually attempt to marry Lorelei Larue (really Lois Lane in disguise.) Lois catches onto Mxyzptlk's plot and tricks him into saying his name backward.
In his next attempt to play pranks on Superman, Mr. Mxyzptlk endows super-powers on a random girl, whom Mxyzptlk believes to be an ordinary girl. Unknown to him, he had restored the super-powers of Supergirl during a time when her powers had been stripped away from her. Later, he would then use his powers on Supergirl again, this time making her temporarily immune to Green Kryptonite, and tricking her into exposing herself to Red Kryptonite. Returning his attentions to Superman, Mxyzptlk would make the entire population of Metropolis forget who Superman is until he succeeds in banishing Mxyzptlk back to the 5th Dimension. Mxyzptlk once again clashes with Bat-Mite when both imps get in the way of another case that Superman, Batman and Robin are working on together. Their combined magic creates a menace that the entire group must work on together to defeat.
Mxyzptlk would once more target Superman, once more employing a gimmick to prevent himself from saying his name backwards. By keeping himself in locations without air to speak, Mxyzptlk torments Superman until the Man of Steel tricks him into saying his name backward in an air pocket created on the moon. Clashing with Supergirl once more, Mr. Mxyzptlk would fall in love with the Maid of Steel and try to win her favor by resurrecting her parents Zor-El and Allura Although since it is later revealed that Zor-El and Allura survived the destruction of Argo City by escaping into the Survival Zone, it's likely that either these were mystical constructs created by Mr. Mxyzptlk or Mxyzptlk pulled her parents from the Survival Zone and removed any memory of their survival in order to better control the situation. Whatever explanation has not been revealed. When the imp asks her father's permission to marry Supergirl, Zor-El tricks Mr. Mxyzptlk into saying his name backwards .
Mister Mxyzptlk's infidelity would lead his girlfriend Miss Gzptlsnz to seek a would be husband in Jimmy Olsen. When a strange Kryptonian mirror is found on Earth and turns Jimmy into an old man, Perry White into a child and Lois Lane into a cat, Superman tricks Mr. Mxyzptlk into changing them all back to normal. Possibly in retribution for this trick, Mr. Mxyzptlk returns again to Metropolis and uses his powers to make three duplicates of Jimmy before Superman can trick him into saying his name backwards. Despite the fact that he was still stuck in the 5th Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk targets Jimmy again using a machine that allows Mxyzptlk to take control of the cub reporter and channel his powers through. This plot is ultimately foiled when Jimmy tricks Mxyzptlk into writing his name backward.
When cursed with lockjaw after pulling a prank on the mayor of the 5th Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk returns to torment Superman anew, however the Man of Steel manages to trick Mxyzptlk into saying his name backward with a special device that vocalizes the imp's thoughts. On his next visit to Earth Mxyzptlk curses Superman to make others take and do what the Man of Steel says literally, a plot that is eventually foiled by Superman. During his next visit to Earth, Mxyzptlk is inspired to become a hero after a scolding from the Man of Steel. Becoming a super-hero, he becomes well loved by the people of Metropolis. However, when a statue of Mxyzptlk is erected in the city, it has a glaring typo: Mxyzptlk's name is spelled backward. When Mxyzptlk reads it he is shunted back to the 5th Dimension. Although Superman is innocent of this oversight, Mxyzptlk blames the Man of Steel for it and abandons any heroic endeavors in the future.
Working again with Bat-Mite, the two imps disguise themselves as Force Boy and Speed Kid to see how long it will take Superman, Batman and Robin to learn the truth. In another plot wherein Mxyzptlk tries to force a wedding between Superman and Lois Lane using "Superman Money", the plot is ultimately foiled by Lana Lang who tricks Mxyzptlk into saying his name backward. Returning to the 3rd Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk arrives during a heated race for Senator between Superman and Lois. Mxyzptlk helps out Lois's camp, unaware that the two "rivals" are instigating matters to ultimately trick Mxyzptlk into saying his name backward again.
In another competition with Bat-Mite, the two imps banish Supergirl and Batgirl to another dimension. Then posing as Black Flame and Catwoman, they disguise themselves as Supergirl and Batgirl and strip Superman and Batman of their powers, equipment and identities until the plot is foiled by the return of the real Supergirl and Batgirl who expose the plot.
On a bet that he can trick Superman for a whole week without being discovered, Mr. Mxyzptlk is foiled once again thanks to the investigative talents of Jimmy Olsen. When a group of aliens called the Sentinels attempt to force Superman into retirement, they use their abilities to reform all of the Man of Steel's foes, including Mr. Mxyzptlk, however these effects are later reversed.Posing as Lake City resident Larissa Lennox and creating a super-baby named Carl, Mr. Mxyzptlk attempts to trick the Man of Steel into thinking that he is the father of the boy. Superman eventually catches onto the plan and tricks the imp into saying his name backward. Turning his attention to Supergirl once more, Mr. Mxyzptlk disguises himself as a smitten creature until he is exposed by the Maid of Steel. In one of his darkest pranks to date, Mr. Mxyzptlk prevents Supergirl from stopping the assassination of a princess, and cannot prevent an actress from being blackmailed on national TV, and creates an anti-Supergirl movement. However, Supergirl caught on and foiled the plot.
After an absence from the 3rd dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk would resume his efforts to torment Superman, pulling pranks that became increasingly more complex and dastardly. First, he would plague Superman and the entire US Congress during a stint in Washington D.C., followed by an attempt to create chaos in Metropolis when Mxyzptlk, inspired by the Bible makes everyone speak a different language. Mr. Mxyzptlk is next used as a pawn by the alien Xivar, putting him and other foes of Superman against the Man of Steel in a plot to destroy the Earth. Superman succeeds in defeating Mr. Mxyzptlk and foiling Xivar's scheme.
Mr. Mxyzptlk next chooses a time when Superman is away from Earth to hatch his next scheme which involves attempting to impress Pete Ross with his powers, this plot ultimately fails. He again attempts to capitalize on Superman's absence from Metropolis, this time at a meeting with the Justice League, however this plot is thwarted by Krypto.
Mxyzptlk is next humbled when he has to ask for Superman's help in returning to the 5th Dimension to marry Miss Bgbznz after he was banished as punishment for his usual brand of trickery. He would next banish Superman to a world where it's heroes are the opposite gender of those of Earth-One. After tormenting a circus, he would team up with Mr. Mind and cause both Superman and Captain Marvel to swap costumes and powers, the two heroes would ultimately thwart the duo and have the mix up reversed. However Mxyzptlk and Mind would then team up with King Kull and boost his powers exponentially. Mxyzptlk, Mr. Mind and King Kull would be defeated by the combined efforts Superman, Captain Marvel, Mary Marvel, and Captain Marvel, Jr..
After another lengthy absence from the 3rd Dimension, Mr. Mxyzptlk would return to torment Superman anew. This time he would use his powers to lure Superman to the House of Mystery to rescue Lois Lane from transformed trick or treaters. Superman would rescue Lois and foil Mxyzptlk's plot with the aid of the House's caretaker Cain. Craving stardom, Mr. Mxyzptlk attempts to become a movie star however this plot is foiled by Superman. In yet another plot, Mxyzptlk causes Superman's powers to drain into Jimmy Olsen, Lois Lane and Perry White, however the Man of Steel foils this plot as well and restores the status quo.
Coming to Earth to celebrate the birth of his son, Mr. Mxyzptlk turns all printed material into a birth announcement until he is stopped once again by Superman. Mxyzptlk is next forced to team-up with his Kryptonian nemesis when Metropolis is terrorized by Mxyzptlk's cousin.
It was in his last return to the third dimension that Mxyzptlk decided to prove his superiority over Superman indirectly, by deciding to punish Kryptonian criminals from the Phantom Zone who thought to overwhelm Mxyzptlk and take over his seemingly infinite powers and escape. Mxyzptlk ultimately defeats them and decides to spend eternity teaching the Phantom Zone criminals "how to have fun", after absorbing them into himself so that he can torment them and make them miserable for the rest of infinity. He tells Superman that he is finished with him, because he'll never be able to have quite the same amount of fun with him as he will with these other Kryptonians, and leaves Superman standing there, who finally realizes the true depth of sadistic evil and power that Mxyzptlk truly has.
Following the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths, the changes to the timeline caused by the consolidation of New Earth would redefine the history existing between Mr. Mxyzptlk and Superman, and the relationship between hero and trickster would begin anew.
In a possible future of the Pre-Zero Hour era of the 30th Century, the descendant of Mr. Mxyzptlk (who also has the same name) would team-up with that eras descendant of Lex Luthor. The duo would attempt to atone for their ancestors evil deeds by disguising themselves and helping the Legion of Super-Heroes against the Legion of Super-Villains. Following the villains defeat, these 30th century descendants would be given membership with the Legion of Super-Heroes.
Many, but not all, Imaginary Tales that appeared to feature the involvement of Earth-One's Mr. Mxyzptlk were retroactively stated to have happened on another reality.
The first is an April Fool's day story in which a number of improbable things happen to Superman, including an encounter with Mr. Mxyzptlk where he is on a date with Lois and willingly banishes himself to the 5th Dimension. It is unknown what alternate reality (if any) this story happened on.
The tale where Superman splits himself off into two personalities Superman-Blue and Superman-Red who use an anti-evil ray to reform all their foes, including Mr. Mxyzptlk was assigned to the hypertime reality Earth-162.
The last such Imaginary Tale was presented as the "Last Superman" story of the Earth-One Superman in which Mr. Mxyzptlk masterminds a plot to defeat his nemesis once and for all by pitting him against his foes Toyman, Prankster, Lex Luthor, Brainiac, Kryptonite Man, and the Legion of Super-Villains against the Man of Steel. The battle would lead to many casualties and injured friends, and when Superman would learn the true mastermind against the attack is Mr. Mxyzptlk he would ultimately use the Phantom Zone Projector to attempt to banish Mxyzptlk to the Phantom Zone. Mxyzptlk would attempt to escape by saying his name backwards, however the combination of the magic shunting him back to the 5th Dimension and the projector's rays seemingly destroyed him This story was stated as have happened on Earth-423.
Powers and Abilities
- Reality Alteration: Hailing from the 5th Dimension Mxyzptlk can manipulate reality and the laws of this universe in such a way as to appear magical. Supposedly the powers of Mxyptlk are based on some form of mental super-science that has literally almost infinite reserves and is thus not effected by true magick forms unlike the Earth-Two Mxytplk.
Mxyzptlk can be sent back to his original dimension if he is fooled into saying his name backwards (Klptzyxm).
- This version of Mister Mxyzptlk, including all history and corresponding appearances, was erased from existence following the collapse of the original Multiverse in the 1985–86 Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series. Even though versions of the character may have since appeared, this information does not apply to those versions.
- The character Mister Mxyzptlk was created by Jerry Siegel and Ira Yarbrough and first appeared in Superman #30 with the slightly different name of Mister Mxyztplk (note that the letters p and t are in a different order). The first appearance of the Earth-One Mxyzptlk is open to interpretation as there is no clear dividing line between Superman stories taking place on Earth-Two and those taking place on Earth-One. Comics historian/indexer Lou "Dark Mark" Mougin in his Earth-One Superman Index lists a story in Superman #96 by William Woolfolk and Al Plastino as the first Earth-One Mxyzptlk appearance, while Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #15 lists Superman #131.
- The official comic book pronunciation of his name is "Mix-yez-PIT-el-ick". The Super Friends TV show uses mix-el-plik as the pronunciation of his name.
- It is hinted at one point that Mxyzptlk was once a resident of the House of Mystery when he appears in the House and Cain says he skipped out on the rent .
- Mxyzptlk was the ultimate villain in Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?. It was revealed that he was motivated purely by boredom and had spent the first 2 millennia of his existence not moving, the second 2 millennia being saintly and good and the third two millennia being mischievous, he would spend the next two millenia being evil and the two millennia after that being guilty. This story was stated to have happened on Earth-423.
- Mxyzptlk appears at the end of the second story set in the Silver Age reality Superman was cast into during the Dominus Effect stories published in Adventures of Superman, revealing himself to be the one responsible for giving everybody in Metropolis (except for Dan Turpin) Superman-like powers.
- 95 Appearances of Mister Mxyzptlk (Earth-One)
- 3 Images featuring Mister Mxyzptlk (Earth-One)
- 6 Quotations by or about Mister Mxyzptlk (Earth-One)
- Character Gallery: Mister Mxyzptlk (Earth-One)
- Superboy #78 - "The Ghost of Jor-El"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #55
- Superman #421 - "Trapped in IMP-TV!"
- DC Comics Presents #97 - "Phantom Zone the Final Chapter"
- Superman #131
- Superboy #83 - "The Dreams of Doom"
- Adventure Comics #306 - "The 5th Dimensional High-School"
- Superboy #114 - "Krypto's Catastrophe"
- Superboy #120 - "The Invulnerable Imp"
- Superboy #131 - "Lex Luthor, Imp"
- Adventure Comics #351 - "The Forgotten Legion"
- Superman #131 - "The Menace of Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Superman #135 - "The Trio of Steel"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #44 - "Jimmy's Leprechaun Pal"
- World's Finest #113 - "Bat-Mite Meets Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Action Comics #273 - "The World of Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #52 - "Jimmy Olsen, Wolf-Man"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #53 - "The Black Magician"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #54 - "King of the Giant Ants"
- Adventure Comics #286 - "Bizarro, Private Detective"
- Adventure Comics #288 - "Bizarro's Secret Identity"
- Superman #148 - "Mr. Mxyzptlk's Super-Mischief"
- Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane #29 - "Lois Lane's Secret Identity"
- Action Comics #282 - "The Supergirl of Tomorrow"
- Action Comics #283 - "The Six Red 'K' Perils of Supergirl"
- Superman #150 - "When the World Forgot Superman"
- World's Finest #123 - "The Incredible Team of Bat-Mite and Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Superman #154 - "The Underwater Pranks of Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Action Comics #309
- Action Comics #291 - "The Underwater Pranks of Mr. Mxyzptlk"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #65 - "The Human Porcupine"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #66 - "The Cabinet from Krypton"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #71 - "The Plot Against Olsen"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #74 - "The Plot Against Olsen"
- Superman #169 - "The Infernal Imp"
- Superman #171 - "The Curse of Magic"
- Superman #174 - "Super-Mxyzptlk ...Hero"
- World's Finest #152 - "The Colossal Kids"
- Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane #61 - "Superman's Marriage Money"
- Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane #62 - "Lois Lane's Anti-Superman Campaign"
- World's Finest #169 - "The Supergirl-Batgirl Plot"
- Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #114 - "The Wrongo Superman"
- Action Comics #368 - "The Unemployed Superman"
- Action Comics #369 - "Superman's Greatest Blunder"
- Superman #218 - "Superman's Secret Past"
- Adventure Comics #386 - "The Beast That Loved Supergirl"
- Adventure Comics #393 - "The Unwanted Supergirl!"
- Superman #283 - "One of Our Imps is Missing"
- Superman #290 - "Babble, Babble, Toil and Trouble!"
- Superman #299 - "The Double-Or-Nothing Life Of Superman!"
- Action Comics #460 - "Welcome Home to Mxyzpolis"
- Action Comics #467 - "A Superman's Best Friend Is His Superdog"
- Superman #335 - "Mxyzptlk Spelled Backward is T-R-O-U-B-L-E"
- Superman #349 - "The Turnabout Trap"
- Superman #351 - "Mister Mxyzptlk's Circus Caper"
- DC Comics Presents #33 - "Man And Supermarvel!"
- DC Comics Presents #34 - "The Beast-Man That Shouted "Hate" At The Heart Of The U.N.!"
- DC Comics Presents #53 - "The Haunting Dooms of Halloween"
- Action Comics #563 - "Mr. Mxyzptlk, Media Star"
- Superman #407 - "Peril of the Pass-Along Powers"
- Action Comics #574 - "Tomorrow is Canceled"
- Crisis on Infinite Earths #12
- Superman (Volume 2) #11
- Adventure Comics #355 - "The War of the Legions"
- Superman #145 - "The Night of March 31st"
- Superboy #95 - "The Super Family from Krypton"
- Superman #162 - "The Amazing Story of Superman-Red and Superman-Blue"
- Superman #423 - "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? Part 1"
- Action Comics #583 - "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? Part 2"
- Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #16
- DC Comics Presents #53 - "The Haunting Dooms of Halloween"
|Superman Villain(s) |
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