The history of Mister Mxyzptlk is unknown before he introduces himself to Superman in his most known form, although it is suggested that he visited the universe before in other forms.
According to one story, young Mxy was drawn to Earth and encountered Young Justice, years after his adult self first visited Superman. This Mxy was a serious student who was disbelieving of Young Justice's claims that he would go on to be a prankster for Earth's greatest hero. He vowed to never become that person. Unfortunately, this changed history so that the Earth was destroyed, so the boys Robin, Superboy, and Impulse had to indoctrinate Mxy with "Three Stooges" videos, changing him from the serious student to the silly prankster. However, when Superboy encountered the adult Mxy after this adventure, he seemed to have no knowledge of their encounter.
Mxyzptlk first appeared on the Post-Crisis Earth in Metropolis posing as a dashing young man named Ben Deroy, who convinces Lois Lane to marry him. Superman quickly learns that he's really an imp from the 5th Dimension. The imp agrees to go home, undoing everything he has done magically, if Superman can get him to spell, type, or say his name backwards. He then proceeds to make up a name for himself on a giant typewriter (brought into existence from an advertisement on a billboard), choosing "Mxyzptlk" as he figures it will be nearly impossible for Superman to accomplish. After putting up with Mxy's antics, Superman grabs the giant typewriter where Mxy left it and defiantly said that the imp could never type the name forwards. Mxy used his magic to type the same exact keys — but Superman had rewired the typewriter, so Mxy had to go home. After he was gone, some scientists theorized that he would not be able to return for 90 days.
On Mxy's next visit to Metropolis, he revealed that the "rules" to send him back would change each time. This time around, Superman had to get him to paint his face blue, which he eventually was able to do.
Mxyzptlk later uses his new experience with lying the next time he visits Earth. He decided to force the Flash (Wally West) into an around the world race against Superman, promising to leave only if Superman wins. Flash won the race, and Mxy revealed that secretly that was the real condition for his leaving.
Although Mxy exclusively annoys Superman, it has been implied that he has traveled to other universes to continue his amusement. As such, Mxy decided he did not have the time to pester Superman, but wanted to give him a hard time anyway. He appears to Luthor, and gave him a lump of "red Kryptonite" which turns Superman into a human. Mxy said it will work so long as Luthor does not tell Superman. Superman enlisted the help of Starman (Will Payton) to steal the rock from Luthor while posing as the Man of Steel. Mxy dropped by to tell Luthor that "Superman" was really Starman before popping back out. The rock was useless to Superman, however, and as Clark Kent he angrily confronts Lex Luthor. Luthor bragged that Mxy gave him the kryptonite, figuring that he can tell Clark and Clark can tell Superman without the "rules" being violated. Unfortunately for Luthor, this breaks the spell, and Superman was restored. Mxy showed up again in Luthor's office, angry that Luthor told. Luthor accused of Mxy of lying about the rules, thinking that Mxy must have "really" meant that if he told anyone the spell would fade. Superman interrupts them before they could piece together the truth, and Mxy gets Superman to punch him out so he can get back to the other dimension.
Superman ended up being just as blind to Luthor's secret as Luthor was to his. Mxy's next encounter puts "Lex Luthor II" into his old body and uses his lying ability to torment both Luthor and Superman. Superman managed to defeat him and send him home again.
Mxyzptlk's next encounter was a minor one, occurring when an enraged Superman became convinced that Mxy was responsible for a dead body in his image appearing his old tomb. Mxy turned up to confess that he was not responsible, but given how much turmoil Superman had been under, he wouldn't heap on any more.
On his next visit, Mxy tried being "nice" by granting people's wishes — although the results of the wishes are disastrous: a woman who wishes her dough would rise faster results in it flooding out into the street; several people's desire to have a river view apartment cause their building to stand up and walk over to the river; and many, many people all win the lottery all at once. Mxy was distraught when he finds that Lois has broken off her engagement with Clark. He tries to put them back together, resorting to everything he knows how (such as putting Lois in danger, role reversal, a la Super-Lois, or giving them a pet or baby), but they all fail. He told Superman that he never used his wish, so he can wish for Lois to get back together with him. Instead, Superman wishes Mxy would return home.
Mxyzptlk was therefore happy when Clark and Lois got back together. He showed up at the church in both his new, cutesy form and his classic form to wish Superman the best, promising a visit sooner or later.
Mxy's next visit was pretty harmless, however. He arrived during a funeral (for McGurk) and having no real understanding of mortal death, thinks the whole thing is rather hilarious. Superman (who was in his blue energy phase at the time) was not amused by Mxy's mocking the subject of death — so Mxy makes fun of Superman's new costume and powers instead. He then decided to learn about death and earn the admiration of the world by recreating Superman's battle with Doomsday only with himself fighting the creature (which is an extra spiney version of the real monster whom Mxy calls "Bada-Bing, Bada-Boomsday"). Unfortunately, the creature is a little too good, and it succeeds in actually killing Mxy. The imp ends up at the desk of the "supreme being," Mike Carlin, the editor for the Superman books at the time, who restores him to life in the comics.
The New 52
The DC Universe heavily changed its continuity into the DCnU following the events of Flashpoint in 2011. This was part of an effort to make storylines more accessible to newer readers, beginning with the New 52. This new timeline combines elements from the DCU, Vertigo Universe and Wildstorm Universe while drastically changing the origins and histories of characters.
Mxyzptlk was captured by a transdimensional booby trap created by Mister Oz, putting him in a negative space prison. Mister Oz commented that because fifth dimensional beings were immortal, it would be 2,000 Earth years before either Mxyzptlk's girlfriend or Bat-Mite realized he was gone. Mxyzptlk gloats to Oz that Superman will come looking for him; when he doesn't, Mxyzptlk suffers an emotional breakdown. In the depth of despair he says Kltpzyxm, and finds out that it can crack his prison. However, it is very painful for him to do so. He pushes through the pain and, after saying Kltpzyxm with multiple heads, escapes the prison.
However, Mxyzptlk finds that Mister Oz prepared for this possibility. To escape, Mxyzptlk turned himself into a physical and mental duplicate of Clark Kent. However, the inconsistencies of those who remembered Clark Kent caused him to confront Superman and his family. This encounter prompts him to remember who he truly is. Eager for revenge at being forgotten, he kidnaps Jon Kent, Superman and Lois' son. Mxyzptlk also reveals that both the New Earth and Prime Earth Supermen are actually two halves of the true, complete Superman, who was split into two separate people during the Flashpoint. The two Supermen save Jon and become a single, complete version of Superman, while Mxyzptlk escapes to another dimension, as his actions have brought the attention of an entity even he fears.
- Magic: Mxyzptlk is nigh-omnipotent and can do virtually anything imaginable; he can manipulate anything and everything under him.
- Teleportation: Mxyzptlk can disappear and reappear anywhere instantly with a thought. In one case, he was able to teleport Bizarro from his planet to Earth almost instantly just by snapping his fingers together, demonstrating a scope to this ability.
- Gesturify: Mxyzptlk can manipulate logic and the fundamentals of reality on a multiversal scale. He can create structured lifeforms with full complexions that don't exist just by thinking, and in that regard, he can also make any living organism vanish and become non-existent at a single thought.
- Immortality: Mxyzptlk is able to use magic to survive most attacks, making him impossible to defeat without exploiting his weaknesses. He can regenerate and heal himself instantly and has high tolerance to pain.
- Flight: Mxyzptlk is able to fly as fast as or even faster than Superman thanks to his magic.
- Cosmic Awareness
- Power Limitation: Mxyzptlk's actions are also governed by restrictions that he establishes for himself. If Mxyzptlk decides that he will return to the 5th Dimension if someone convinces him to (for example) spell his name backwards, then he is obligated to comply with the regulation. Once banished, Mxyzptlk must remain in the 5th Dimension for a minimum of ninety days before returning to Earth. When Mxyzptlk is banished, all of the damage he caused would be reversed and any of his spells or magic used on Earth will fade.
- Mental Illness: Mister Mxyzptlk has an irrational compulsion and attachments towards practical jokes and things of a prankish, immature nature. He rarely takes fighting seriously and normally spends his battles goofing off or playing games, uninterested in harming or killing his enemies.
- 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 Post-Crisis New Earth Mxyzptlk first appeared in Superman (Volume 2) #11 by John Byrne.
- Mister Mxyzptlk reveals that he can move from one alternate reality to another and that the name he uses has different spellings and pronunciations depending on the reality he is in: Mxyzptlk, Mxyztplk, Mixelplik. The pronunciation on New Earth was mix-yez-pittle-lik.
- Mxy did not only plague Superman in the DC Universe, but it was hinted at that he was also the character Impossible Man from the Marvel Universe. This was a joke when he is shown in another universe having fun with his four "fantastic" new friends, and that it was "impossible" for him to always remember what he looked like from one universe to the next.
- Mxyzptlk's hint that he is the only one in the multiverse is potentially invalidated as a Mxyzptlk was reformed by the "anti-evil ray" of the hypertime reality Earth-162 and two others were killed on other hypertime realities: one on Earth-423 and another one was killed in the reality where Superman was killed by Gog on July 9, 2031.
- Mister Mxyzptlk is the name he adopts after he introduces himself to Superman and says that his real name would never translate into any Earth language.
- Mister Mxyzptlk is sometimes simply known as Mxy.
- Mister Mxyzptlk has an irrational compulsion and attachments towards practical jokes and things of a prankish, immature nature. He rarely takes fighting seriously and normally spends his battles goofing off, uninterested in harming or killing his enemies. It has been demonstrated that this is an aspect of Mxyzptlk's interaction with a three-dimensional reality such as the Earth-dimension. The more time he spends in the Earth dimension, the more prone he is to engage in puckish behavior.
- 100 Appearances of Mister Mxyzptlk (New Earth)
- 19 Images featuring Mister Mxyzptlk (New Earth)
- 7 Quotations by or about Mister Mxyzptlk (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Mister Mxyzptlk (New Earth)
- ↑ Young Justice #3
- ↑ Supergirl (Volume 4) #76
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Superman (Volume 2) #11
- ↑ The Adventures of Superman #441
- ↑ Superman (Volume 2) #31
- ↑ The Adventures of Superman #463
- ↑ Superman (Volume 2) #49
- ↑ Action Comics #659
- ↑ Superman (Volume 2) #50
- ↑ The Adventures of Superman #496
- ↑ Action Comics #705
- ↑ Action Comics #721
- ↑ Superman: The Man of Steel #56
- ↑ Superman: The Wedding Album #1
- ↑ Superman: The Man of Steel #75
- ↑ Action Comics #975
- ↑ Superman (Volume 4) #18
- ↑ Superman (Volume 4) #19
- ↑ Action Comics #976
- ↑ The Kingdom #1
- ↑ The Brave and the Bold (Volume 3) #11
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