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"The Haunting": Clark returns to Smallville after a long time away. His adoptive parents pick him up. Jonathan Kent is about to tell him something but Martha shushes him.

Quote1 I may have been conceived out there in the endless depths of space... but I was born when the rocket opened, on Earth, in America. I'll cherish always the memories Jor-El and Lara gave me... but only as curious mementos of a life that might have been. Krypton bred me, but it was Earth that gave me all I am. All that matters. It was Krypton that made me Superman... but it is the Earth that makes me Human! Quote2

The Man of Steel #6 is an issue of the series The Man of Steel (Volume 1) with a cover date of December, 1986.

Synopsis for "The Haunting"

Clark returns to Smallville after a long time away. His adoptive parents pick him up. Jonathan Kent is about to tell him something but Martha shushes him.

Later that night, Clark cannot sleep as he wonders what his father was about to tell him. When he goes for a midnight snack, a "ghost" of Jor-El surprises him and touches him.

Superman discovers himself to be on an alien planet where he encounters his biological mother, Lara. As the hallucination wears off, he is face to face with his old flame, Lana Lang.

In a flashback, it turns out that on the night that Clark learned his heritage he went to Lana and revealed the truth of his powers to her. She confesses her feelings to him. She realizes that Clark can no longer belong to her, that he belongs to the world and this fact had hurt her. She had gone through a period of depression and finally accepts the fact.

The next day, Superman thinks about what she said and starts wondering about where he truly came from. He goes to the location where Jonathan hid the rocket ship he was found in only to find that the ship is gone. The hologram of Jor-El reappears and tells him to be silent and to learn. It appears that Superman is under some kind of psionic attack, but the Kents arrive in time and Jonathan breaks it off by attacking the Jor-El hologram with a shovel. Superman flies away, realizing that it was not a mental attack but a download of knowledge of everything about Krypton into his brain. He finally knows his biological parents and where he came from and though he appreciates the knowledge he has been given, in the end, he embraces his humanity even more.

Appearing in "The Haunting"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


Other Characters:

  • Helen Lang (First appearance) (Dies in flashback)
  • Lois Lane (In dream sequence only)
  • Mary Ellen Anderson (Mentioned only)
  • Tom Harold (Mentioned only)
  • Clyde Harold (Mentioned only)





  • Superman was made the sole survivor of Krypton's destruction (vs. the earlier version having other survivors such as Supergirl, Krypto, etc. attached to him). Superman had no memory of his existence on Krypton, but he instead identified himself as a citizen of Earth. Pre-Crisis, Pete Ross knew of Clark's abilities since they were teenagers, while Lana Lang suspected Clark of being Superboy. Post-Crisis, Pete learned this information much later. Instead, Clark revealed his abilities to Lana just before he left Smallville. Clark's adoptive Terran parents, Jonathan and Martha Kent are alive and well in Clark's adulthood, and Clark visits them periodically. Pre-Crisis, they had died shortly after Clark's high school graduation.


  • Clark is twenty-eight years old by the time the story ends.

See Also

Recommended Reading

Links and References

The Man of Steel 1A
Post-Crisis Reboot
DC Rebirth Logo

After the Crisis on Infinite Earths, a 19851986 maxiseries which completely reset the continuity of the entire DC Universe, all of DC's major characters and franchises needed to be updated to reflect the changes in the events of their lives. Multiple story arcs were put out to explain these rebooted versions of popular characters.