SupermanBack to Heroes Main > Superman
Real Identity: Clark Kent, Kal- El
Nicknames: The Man of Steel
Affiliation(s): Justice League/Unlimited
Appearances (STAS): All 54 Episodes
Appearances (TNBA): Double Talk
Appearances (BB): The Call Part One and Part Two
Appearances (JL/U): Secret Origins Part One, Part Two, Part Three, In Blackest Night Part One, Part Two, Enemy Below Part One, Part Two, Paradise Lost Part One, Part Two, Injustice For All Part One, Part Two, War World Part One, Part Two, Fury Part One, Part Two, Legends Part One, Part Two, Metamorphosis Part One, Part Two, Savage Time Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Twilight Part One, Part Two, Tabula Rasa Part One, Part Two, Only a Dream Part One, Part Two, A Better World Part One, Part Two, Eclipsed Part Two, Terror Beyond Part One, Part Two, Secret Society Part One, Part Two, Hereafter Part One, Part Two, Wild Cards Part One, Part Two, Comfort and Joy, Starcrossed Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Initiation, For the Man who has Everything, Kid's Stuff, the Return, Greatest Story Never Told, Ultimatum, Dark Heart, Wake the Dead, Doomsday Sanction, Clash, Question Authority, Flashpoint, Panic in the Sky, Divided We Fall, I am Legion, Shadow of the Hawk, To Another Shore, Flash and Substance, Dead Reckoning, Far From Home, Alive! and Destroyer
Appearances (SS): Toys in the Hood
Appearances (BTAC Comics): Hardware
Voiced By: Jesse Batten/ Jason Marsden/ Tim Daly/ Christopher McDonald/ George Newbern/ Shane Haboucha (Kid Superman)
Decades ago, the planet Krypton, 50 light-years from Earth, was home to a race renowned for their scientific and technological advancement. The Kryptonians became enamored in their pursuit of knowledge and soon fell prey to an aloofness. They placed all of their needs and worries upon an artificial intelligence named Brainiac. A young and brash scientist, Jor-El began to conduct his own geological research, after the birth of his son, Kal-El. Jor-El came to the startling conclusion that a chain of explosions would destroy the planet. There was no interstellar fleet present. Jor-El created a small vessel, a life boat, that one volunteer would ride and rest of the Kryptonian race would be temporarily stored in the Phantom Zone. The Council scoffed at this, the Zone housed the worst of Krypton's criminal fringe and alien threats. Brainiac also dismissed Jor-El's claims while planning its own escape. Jor-El discovered Brainiac's betrayal and barely got away with his life.
Jor-El and his wife Lara decided to place their son, Kal-El in the life boat and set the navigational system to a remote planet with a yellow sun in its solar system. A holo cube with the history of Krypton, along with the Phantom Zone Projector, were placed in the ship. One day, Kal-El would be old enough to activate these devices and learn of his legacy. The ship and dozens of shards of Krypton arrived on Earth. Kal-El landed near Smallville, Kansas in the United States of America. He was discovered by a young couple, Jonathan and Martha Kent. The couple was having a difficulty in conseiving a child of their own. Martha Kent named Kal-El, Clark, after her maiden name. Clark Kent was raised with love, morals and ethics, just as Lara-El hoped he would be.
In his teenage years, Kent excelled in his studies despite being caught day dreaming. Something else happened, too. Kent's body had been absorbing the radiation of the yellow sun and developed a range of super powers. He was confused and unsure of himself and couldn't confide in his best friend, Lana Lang. Kent saved a family of tourists from an explosion and emerged unscathed. The Kent's decided it was time to reveal the ship to their son. Despite some hesitance and anger, Kent came to accept his heritage. After graduating high school, he left Smallville and went on a journey of exploration. Martha Kent collected newspaper headlines of a mystery man coming to the rescue of others.
Kent decided he would live a double life. One, he would live a normal life, the other he would be a hero. A costume was fashioned from the El family crest, resembling an S from the Alphabet. He wore a pair of glasses and a subtle hair style to disguise himself. Kent went to the city of Metropolis and applied for a position as a full time reporter for the Daily Planet. The Planet's star reporter, Lois Lane walked in on the interview with a demand to write a story on a mysterious costumed hero. She dubbed him Superman.
Soon after, Superman discovered a plot between wealthy businessman Lex Luthor and the Regent of Kaznia. After defeating the Regent's terror squad, Superman and Lex Luthor met for the first time and parted ways as adversaries. Despite the hold of Lex Luthor and Intergang on Metropolis, Superman found allies in Professor Emile Hamilton of STAR Labs and Maggie Sawyer and Dan Turpin of the Metropolis Police Department Special Crimes Unit. Over the years, Superman inervened in several high profile events and earned the animosity of the super villain fringe. Villains like Parasite, Metallo, Livewire and Luminus plotted revenge but were defeated time and time again.
The pieces of Krypton, named Kryptonite, were unearthed around the planet. In a moment of coincidence, Luthor discovered Superman had a weakness to it. After a botched trap, Luthor led Superman to the Natural Museum of History and attempted to kill him with a Kryptonite-armed mechanical dinosaur. In the skirmish, Superman was wounded and bled. LexCorp technicians collected DNA samples and began a secret project to clone an army of Supermen. The prototype failed and mutated into a monstrosity named Bizarro. Lex Luthor continued to manipulate his way into methods of killing Superman or trying to replicate his powers.
At times, Superman found himself at odds with his choices and the way of the world. He discovered a series of undersea caverns, with enough integrity to last permanently, somewhere in the Antarctic. For giving STAR Labs full access to his life boat and technology, Superman was given enough to outfit the cavern with technology and building material. This place was named the Fortress of Solitude. When Superman defeated the species collecting Preserver, he had no idea on how to return the Preserver's prisoners. The alien animals were given homes in the Fortress and Superman cared for the "zoo." Whenever, Superman wasn't present, robot guardians in his likeness were activated and performed the required functions to maintain the Fortress.
In his sophmore years, Superman worked alonside other heroes such as the Flash and Dr. Fate. But no other relationship has been tumultous as the one between Superman and Batman. The two originally met when the Joker came to Metropolis and was contracted to kill Superman. The two were at odds over each other's methods and quickly discovered each other's secret identities. Over time, they accepted the fact that the world needed both of them and came to respect each other.
Superman battled another Brainiac on the Far Side of the Moon. Lex Luthor observed the fight from a lunar satellite in orbit. Sensing it was going to lose, Brainiac uploaded itself somewhere into space. Superman took the remnants to WayneTech for analysis as a favor. Bruce Wayne personally went through it and determined there was no trace of Brainiac's programming left. Superman was kidnapped by Lex Luthor, subjected to a mind control device, and placed in a giant robot where he acted as a solar battery. The week after, he was still absent. Luthor played along and noted it at a party at Gotham's Cloud Nine. Batman tested Luthor's claims and called Clark Kent's phone number. He went to voicemail. Batman hung up and continued with tracking a robot that raided the alien hardware from WayneTech. Alfred Pennyworth mentioned the robot had a co-pilot chamber. Batman was curious. Pennyworth turned his attention to the scans he took, there was one cockpit in the front and one in the rear of the robot.
Batman realized one was a battery and deduced Luthor kidnapped Superman and turned him into a solar battery to power the robot. Batman suited up and flew back to the airfield then tailed Luthor's cargo plane. Luthor eventually operated the robot. Batman fired a taser into the robot and jolted it with a Kryptonite charge. Superman was roused from Luthor's mind control device and broke free from the robot using heat vision and his super strength. Superman grabbed Luthor and asked Batman if he minded if he took care of the rest. Batman obliged and advised him to take Mercy Graves, too, on the way. Superman returned in full costume and asked Batman how he knew he was in the robot. Batman explained he saw the schematics and realized what happened then deduced a Kryptonite charge would break his induced state. Superman declared he once again owed him. Batman requested he just get rid of Brainiac's remains, like throwing it into the Sun. Superman agreed and took off. Batman mused he really was a boy scout.
There were times when Superman's victories were tainted and he was challenged beyond his limitations. Earth, the rumored Fifth World, became the object of obsession for the dictator of Apokolips, Darkseid. Superman encountered agents of Apokolips, Kanto and Kalibak, but turned the tide. Months later, he met Orion of New Genesis. Together, they fought an Intergang armed with Apokoliptian technology attacking the Sinnott Air Force Base. Superman, alone, then had to avert a radioactive explosion when Darkseid guided Intergang leader, Bruno Mannheim to detonate the Ayers Island Power Plant. He was soon surprised and incapacitated by Darkseid and paraded in restraints. The people of Metropolis rebelled and freed Superman. Just in time, the New Gods of New Genesis arrived and mandated Earth under their protection. However, upon his leave, Darkseid killed Inspector Dan Turpin.
Superman was enraged and saddened by the loss. He was unable to cope with the loss and opted to take a trip away from Earth. Years ago, Professor Hamilton succeeded in adapting Superman's ship into a flight-worthy vessel again. With the coordinates left on the ship, Superman retraced his route and found the solar system that was once home to Krypton. Superman's depression was not solved, there were no life signs. But then, he discovered a transmission and discovered Kara In-Ze on the neighboring planet Argos. Superman resolved to protect In-Ze and make sure another life wouldn't be lost. In-Ze lived on the Kent farm. Time and time again, Superman denied her offer to help fight crime and do good. Three years later, she decided to go to Metropolis on her own and debuted as Supergirl. Along with Jimmy Olsen, she uncovered another Apokoliptian plot.
Months later, Superman left Earth to investigate a mysterious distress call in space. It was a trap. He was taken to Apokolips and subjected to torture and brainwashing. Superman was set loose as a general and son of Darkseid. Ultimately, Darkseid planned on setting Superman to devastate Earth, unite the military forces of Earth to destroy Superman and tarnish his reputation. Superman and Supergirl were nearly killed by a Kryptonite warhead and taken into military custody. They were imprisoned in a compound headed by Project Achilles, a black ops program dedicated to study and analyze Superman. It was heavily funded by none other than Lex Luthor. Luthor urged project overseer, General Hardcastle to execute Superman. After a tribunal was held, Luthor offered Hardcastle a final solution, liquified Kryptonite to be injected. Lois Lane used her father's clearance to infiltrate the compound and free Superman and Supergirl. Superman decided it was time to defeat Darkseid once and for all. Supergirl stopped Superman short of delivering the killing blow.
For the time after, Superman attempted to rebuild his image. He continued to work with other heroes, Batman included, and briefly encountered mysterious humans that blew up a Wayne Tech Sub-Station dedicated to global deep space monitoring. Superman began receiving blurred and painful telepathic pleas for help from J'onn Jonzz, the last Martian. Superman was also approached by Senator Carter to help him with a bold disarmament plan for the world's nuclear warheads. Superman was duped into weakening the world's defenses. The real Carter died two years ago and was being impersonated by an advance agent of the world conqueror, the Imperium. Superman joined Batman, J'onn Jonzz, Flash, Green Lantern, Hawkgirl and Wonder Woman in repelling the invasion.
To prevent another invasion, Batman launched a Watchtower, dedicated to monitoring deep space incursions, into orbit. Superman offered to take it one step further and offered to form a Justice League, an alliance of heroes with the underlying dedication to peace and justice.
While preparing the detonation of a stray meteor with J'onn Jonzz, Superman was incapcitated when hidden Hydrogen pockets increased the blast radius. The two were picked up by a vessel that searches for combtants to fight in War World. Superman fought his way out but the arena's force field stopped him short. J'onn Jonzz phased out and bidded his time. Superman defeated Draaga, the reigning champion and won the confidence of the people. Superman refused to kill Draaga and saw Mongul's facade for what it was, distraction from social issues; mass food rations, medical shortages, blackouts and unemployment. However, Mongul was in possession of a cannon with the power to decimate a planet and blackmailed Superman into a final bout. Meanwhile, Green Lantern and Hawkgirl arrived and with J'onn Jonzz, destroyed the cannon. Mongul was humiliated and unseated.
Brainiac had rebuilt itself and resumed its convoluted mission to siphon the memory banks and technology of a planet, then annihilate it. It arrived on Apokolips and was given an alternative by Darkseid. In exchange for Superman, Apokolips would be spared. Darkseid discovered Brainiac planned to extract Kryptonian DNA and evolve beyond its current programming. Darkseid overrode the control circuits and used Brainiac to attack New Genesis. Superman was hesitant from the start and took the chance to kill Darkseid. Batman intervened and boomed himself, Superman and Orion to safety.
A group of Superman's enemies-Toyman, Livewire, Weather Wizard, Kalibak and Metallo-banded together to get revenge on Superman. Initially, the Justice League arrived first in Metropolis to oppose them. Superman later arrived and Toyman sought to kill Superman. He set his aim on Batman and Wonder Woman, instead. Superman sacrificed himself and took the brunt of the blast. Instead of dying, Superman was hit by an energized takion stream and teleported some 5,000 years into a hypertime future. He had to survive under a red sun without powers and set about to track down the Watchtower. He was then approached by Vandal Savage. Superman convinced Savage to restart construction on his time machine. The two attempted to steal back a Zero Point Module from a colony of mutant insects. Superman was able to regain his powers from the radiation of the ZPM. Superman returned to the present and led the League to stopping the present day Savage from stealing dwarf star matter from Dr. Ray Palmer.
Mongul, after plotting and traveling to Earth, found Superman's Fortress of Solitude and laid a trap for him. The Black Mercy was freed by Superman and it attached itself to him and fed him a life-like simulation of a normal life on Krypton. There he had a wife, Loana and a son, Van, named after his mother's maiden name. With Batman's help, Superman was able to break free and renewed a promise to his parents to never ignore his heritage.
The pressures of leading the expanded Justice League led Superman to succomb to the weakness of power. The League became too pro-active and began to instill some fear in the people. Lex Luthor took advantage of the build up of distrust to pursue his own agenda. The Watchtower was hacked into and remotely fired upon an evacuated Cadmus compound in New Mexico. Superman decided the only option was for himself and the rest of the founding League members to turn themselves in until an investigation could be conducted. After Brainiac and Lex Luthor were defeated, a rally was held. Superman disbanded the League but after a rousing speech by Green Arrow, Superman decided to reverse the order. He came up with a plan to build an embassy of sorts on Earth to keep up a dialogue with the people.
Another effect of absorbing yellow sun radiation, Superman's life expectancy was extended. 50 years into the future, Superman is still an active full time member of the Justice League Unlimited. He has since then shed his original costume and wears a black and white motif that is more reminiscent of Kryptonian origin. For several years, he was possessed by Starro, an inhabitant of his Fortress' zoo. The exact interaction between the two were unclear but it was enough to fool even members of the League. Superman's condition was discovered after the second Batman was recruited to join the League. With Bruce Wayne's knowledge, the League boomed to the Fortress of Solitude and confronted Superman-Starro. Batman utilized his Kryptonite shard to overwhelm and knock out Superman. Aquagirl made telepathic contact and discovered Starro was spawning itself. The rest of the League was soon taken over by spawn. Batman escaped and attempted to outfly Superman. Batman managed to ensnare Superman with a wench and electrocute Superman. He was able to wrest himself free from Starro and recover. Batman and Superman returned to the Fortress and rounded up the spawn before they could be released into the ocean.
Over the next 15 years, Batman proved himself to Superman and the rest of the League. Superman eventually ceded leadership to Aquagirl and the others but remained with the League. Occassionally, he collaborates on miscellenous cases with Batman. Superman established himself as a model of humanity and the embodiment of altruism. Into the 31st Century, Superman would serve as an influence for the Legion of Superheroes. Aliens put aside their differences and banded together to usher the United Planets in unparalleled peace and prosperity.
The last copy of Brainiac activated and rebuilt itself in the 31st Century. It broke into a technology firm and reprogrammed the circuits to overload an accelerator manually and create a temporal anamoly. Brainaic rigged itself a spatial disrupter and went to the past to kill Clark Kent before he discovered his powers. Clark Kent was approached by Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy and Chameleon Boy. Saturn Girl made telepathic contact with Kent and revealed his future to him. Kent overcame Brainiac and used its control belt to teleport it into the Sun. Saturn Girl then blocked Kent's memories and with the other Legionnaires, returned to the future with Brainiac's hover chair. Kent was found by Lana Lang and he donned a pair of glasses, soon after.