The Untold Truth Of General Zod

General Zod has humble roots. His first appearance wasn’t even in Action Comics or Superman, the two serial titles closely associated with the Man of Steel. Instead, it was in the pages of Adventure Comics #283. This was the title of Superboy’s adventures, and this issue marks his first encounter with the Phantom Zone. In a case that would push the boundaries of plausibility if it weren’t in a Silver Age DC story, a Phanton Zone projector falls from the sky and a random accident turns on its portal, causing an unsuspecting Superboy to stumble into the pocket dimension .

In this story, General Zod is not even introduced as a character that Superboy encounters in the present. Instead, young Clark sees a flashback to the crime that locked Zod in the Phantom Zone in the first place. Turns out the general created an army of robotic duplicates of himself that looked and talked a lot like Bizarro in order to conquer Krypton. Zod nearly escapes in “Adventure Comics” #293, thanks to alien Brain-Globes who have mind-controlled the Legion of Super-Heroes. He successfully escapes in Action Comics #297, which is also his first appearance in one of the main titles, Superman. However, instead of Superman, he is defeated by Supergirl in a backstory. Zod and his cronies might have overcome the strength and cunning of Kara Zor-El if only they hadn’t decided to dupe Lex Luthor.

From this point on, Zod frequently escapes from the Phantom Zone, but his intentions aren’t entirely evil…just mostly evil. Zod helps Superman with his “Zod Squad” against the murderous Kryptonian enemies, the Vrangs, in “Action Comics” #549. Zod’s last appearance before his reconnection through Crisis on Infinite Earths was in DC Comics Presents #97.

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