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The Greatest Pre-Crisis Superboy Stories Ever Told!

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Every day we will reveal the greatest stories ever told starring a particular character or written/drawn by a particular creator. These lists are voted on by YOU, the reader!

Here is the list of characters/creators featured so far (along with the rules on how to vote).

Today’s list is the Greatest Pre-Crisis Superboy Stories Ever Told!


10. “Pete Ross’ Super-Secret!” Superboy #90

For awhile there, Pete Ross actually seemed like he was going to be a really interesting character. His intro four issues earlier was a good story (where Pete seems like he’s learned Superboy’s secret but really didn’t) and then you have this tale, drawn by George Papp, where Pete discovers Superboy’s secret but is such a good guy that he decides to keep it a secret from everyone – INCLUDING not letting on to Superboy that he knows! Interesting set-up that they never really did a whole lot with over the years (although one of the stories on this list DID use it well).

9. “The Last Days of Ma and Pa Kent!” Superman #161

Leo Dorfman and Al Plastino tell this tragic tale of when Superboy’s parents lost their lives to deadly virus. Their deaths shake Superboy’s world so much that he briefly quits being a superhero (as he believes that they caught their virus in the past when he took them time traveling).

8. “Judge, Jury and No Justice!” DC Comics Presents #14

This issue is technically part two of a story, but this is the only issue that Superboy appears in it. Pete Ross switches bodies with Superboy in an attempt to punish Superman for Superman not protecting Pete’s son, Jon. Paul Levitz wrote it and Dicks Dillin and Giordano drew it.

7. “The Super-Dog from Krypton!” Adventure Comics #210

Krypto makes his debut in this delightful tale by Otto Binder, Curt Swan and Sy Barry. Here, Krypto is just a standard dog and he can’t help but accidentally almost ruining Clark Kent’s secret identity repeatedly. Luckily, eventually Krypto goes off on a space adventure. He doesn’t return for many years, at which point he is Superman’s problem to deal with (Superboy likely noted, “Phew, let future me deal with this.”

6. “How Luthor Met Superboy!” Adventure Comics #271

Jerry Siegel and Al Plastino reveal how Lex Luthor came to hate Superboy (and therefore, Superman).

The top five is on the next page!

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I don’t know, some of these seem more like “important moments in the superboy mythos” than greatest stories. I’d pick the Pete Ross story with the original Superboy Revenge Squad as a better one than his debut for instance. Although I don’t think there’s much in the way of “great” Superboy stories the way there are for Superman (even though I enjoy them).
On the plus side, no Superboy Prime!

joe the poor speller

May 3, 2013 at 6:54 am

well, that’s the end of another greatest stories ever told. I wish the next one don’t take so long to come. and have a ‘greatest harvey bullock stories ever told’.

Turd Burglar

May 3, 2013 at 6:55 am

I think that a Harvey Bullock list is just a *tad* obscure.

joe the poor speller

May 3, 2013 at 7:09 am

indeed. but still, would love it.

Adam Weissman

May 3, 2013 at 8:59 am

#1: Batman #392

At one point didn’t the Legion make Pete Ross an honorary member for keeping Superboy’s secret?

Another Superboy-focused favorite Legion story of mine (I never got around to voting in this)…


I won’t spoil the “super-secret” but I thought it a clever explanation of a pre-Crisis problem LSH stories had, though dropped in the many reboots since.

Turd Burglar

May 3, 2013 at 7:08 pm

@fraser —

That’s true to an extent, but at least half of these stories are classics.

Well, this is the first of these lists where I’ve read NONE of the stories. Not too surprising; while I’ve read a good many pre-Crisis Superman stories, the same can’t be said for pre-Crisis Superboy.

You are destroying me with these Superboy/Superman lists. I only have so much money!

Turd Burglar

May 4, 2013 at 7:40 am

Were there any major omissions to the list? Anything that stands out that didn’t make the cut for whatever reason?

Being a Legion fan rather than a Superboy fan I voted for an assortment of legion stories including the 2 Levitz classics (Earthwar and Great Darkness) and some of the more Superboy-centric stories like “The war between Krypton and Earth” and “Future shock for Superboy” and “Curse of the blood crystals”

That cover makes me wonder, is that the first of the many instances of Bizarro doing bad while thinking he’s doing good? Or are the townspeople just like, “Ew, that guy’s gross-looking. Let’s throw rocks at him!”

Bit of both TJ. Bizarro makes several bad mistakes, but it’s also clear people are repulsed by his appearance, so his only friend ends up being a blind girl (which plays into the ending).

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