The history of Superboy is a convoluted one at best. Two different heroes have taken on the role of Superboy over the years.

Initially with the success of the hero Superman, the writers at DC Comics sought to make the hero more accessible for their main audience: young boys. Where Batman had Robin, The Flash had Kid Flash and The Green Arrow had Speedy, there was no one who could team up with the incredibly powerful Superman and be more than a liability. So the writers created a history in which the Man of Steel had been the Boy of Steel.

Young Clark Kent lived in Smallville, KS with his adopted parents Jonathan and Martha Kent. Clark manifested his super powers at a very young age and adopted the costumed identity of Superboy in his early teens. Superboy first appeared in More Fun Comics #101, but soon was headlining his own title. Superboy's life in Smallville, was populated with a number of characters, from his best friend Pete Ross to his girlfriend Lana Lang. He even had a group of super-powered friends to hang out with in the Legion of Super-Heroes.

When the Crisis on Infinite Earths took place, it wiped out the existence of Superboy. Clark Kent was never a teenage hero, so the members of the Legion of Super-Heroes would never have been inspired by his exploits to create the Legion. This created for the writers of the Legion a problem, as Superboy was an important part of their storyline. To explain this, the writers came up with an explanation for the existence of Superboy. Due to the Crisis, a Legion villain known a Mordru was destined to be the ultimate ruler of the 30th century because there would be no one to oppose him. For this reason, the Time Trapper, another Legion villain, created a pocket universe, by going back millions of years and stealing a moment in time which contained an entire universe. He then manipulated that universe so that Clark Kent became Superboy.

He also made sure that whenever the Legion of Super-Heroes traveled back in time, that they traveled to the pocket universe, and not the real DC Universe.

In the pocket universe, Superboy is a survivor of the planet Krypton. Sent to earth by his father Jor-El prior to the destruction of Krypton, Kal-El was found by Jonathan Kent and his wife Martha. Named Clark, the Kents raised the boy as their own. At an early age, Clark showed signs of super powers, like super-strength, flight, super-speed, invulnerability to everything except magic and Kryptonite, x-ray vision, and a host of other powers. Adopting a costumed identity, Clark became Superboy and had many adventures. Those adventures inspired super-powered youths in the future to band together and form the Legion of Super-Heroes.

When the Legion and Superboy discovered the Time Trapper's plot, the Time Trapper attempted to destroy the Legion by destroying the pocket universe. Superboy gave his own life to save the Legion and his home.

In the post-Crisis universe, there was no Superboy, until early 1990's, when in Adventures of Superman #500, we are introduced to the new Superboy who was created by Karl Kessel and Tom Grummett. The result of a cloning experiment by the Cadmus Project after the death of Superman at the hands of Doomsday, Superboy was a clone from the combined DNA of Superman and then Cadmus director Paul Westfield. The clone escaped from Cadmus with the help of the Newsboy Legion, becoming one of four individuals vying for the title of Superman left vacant by his passing. Superboy aided the revived Superman and other heroes in saving the earth from Mogul and the Cyborg Superman and took the name Superboy as his new name.

Superboy possesses tactile telekinesis, which gives him the ability to deflect objects to avoid harming him and to lift great weights. It also allows him to fly, but leaves him vulnerable to gas and energy weapons. Because of an attack to his genetic code, Superboy is stuck with the appearance of a 16-year old for the rest of his days.

Superman has adopted Superboy as his cousin giving him the name Kon-El which Superboy proudly bears, as he has never had any other name. He is as member of Young Justice, a group composed of teen superheroes and shepherded by the Red Tornado. He is also an agent of the Cadmus Project

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