Title: "Superboy's Big Brother!" / "The Secret of Mon-El!
Release Date: June, 1961
Writer: Robert Bernstein
Penciller: George Papp
Inker: This kitten's got a WHIP!
LSH Roll Call: Just Mon-El, making his first appearance. And he won't actually be in the Legion for a long, long time.
Guest Stars: Ma and Pa Kent, Lana Lang
Bad Guys: Just some bank robbers
Cameos: Krypto, Jor-El, and Lara

So what happens?
(remember, most of these stories take place pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths)

One evening whilst stargazing with his parents, Clark Kent notices a spaceship making a crash landing towards Smallville. Changing into his identity of Superboy, he races to the crash site, discovering its sole occupant, an older youth who looks sort of like Superboy himself, and wearing a similar costume. The lad is unconscious so Superboy investigates the craft, discovering a note from Superboy's long-gone Kryptonian parents, Jor-El and Lara. This, plus a medallion inscribed with Kryptonese leads Superboy to deduce that this young man is his long lost big brother from Krypton. Eager to have a super-powered sibling, Superboy revives the lad, and tells him of his findings. The young man, though, has amnesia from the crash and so can't corroborate Superboy's deductions. That being the case, he accepts Superboy's word about his origins and, after demonstrating that he has the same powers as Superboy himself, returns with him to the Kents, who are a bit taken aback that they now have two sons. And, since the young alien can't remember much of anything, Clark decides to give him a name: since the ship crashed on a Monday, and Clark's Kryptonian family name is El, he christens the newest resident of Earth as Mon-El.

Since Mon-El's too old to go to high school, Clark gives him a secret identity as a traveling salesman named Bob Cobb. However, Superboy begins to get a bit suspicious when he discovers that Mon's belt isn't made of a metal found on Krypton, nor does he appear to be vulnerable to kryptonite radiation, and Krypto growls at him! However, Clark keeps his suspicions to himself for now, and the two youths embark on various adventures in and around Smallville.

During one such adventure, a bunch of robbers are using a catapult to lob huge lead boulders at the local bank. Mon-El arrives on scene first, but suddenly gets weak and dizzy. Superboy rounds up the criminals instead, then goes to school, where, for no discernable reason but to fill space, he time travels back to Ancient Egypt to learn the origins of the Cinderella myth for a history quiz. However, his teacher doesn't buy the idea that the silly French misunderstood that the slipper was originally made of fur rather than glass and docks his grade. To make himself feel better, Clark helps Lana Lang be a pretty ballerina by using his super breath to make her pirouettes almost super-human in nature!

Back on track with our main storyline, Mon-El, in his secret identity of Bob Cobb, happens to bump into Lana, and offers her a hair brush at a low, low price, flirting with her (or so Clark believes, as he's just arrived on the scene) outrageously. Well, that's the last straw for Clark who gets jealous over all this flattery (strange, since he's never really showed any interest beyond simple friendship with Lana before now!). He invites Mon-El to an asteroid for a super-workout to stay in shape. Superboy gets there early, though, and paints a bunch of rocks to make them appear as Kryptonite then launches them on a trajectory that will make the rocks return during the two boys' workout. Mon-El soon arrives on the scene, and the two play a bit of super baseball with large boulders when the painted rocks return. Superboy acts terrified that the rocks are really Kryptonite, hoping to expose Mon-El and his seeming invulnerability to the element. However Mon-El, just as during the bank robbery, weakens when the boulders start raining down around them. Superboy, who feels fine, accuses Mon-El of duplicity and of not really being from Krypton ... after all, the boulders are made of lead, not of Kryptonite, so Mon-El must be faking it. Mon-El's memory suddenly (and conveniently) returns, though, and he remembers he's not from Krypton, but from a planet called Daxam, whose inhabitants, while similar in genetic makeup to Kryptonians, have a vulnerability to lead. Mon-El, whose Daxamite name is Lar Gand, left Daxam in search of a cure for the Daxamites lead weakness, making a stop at Krypton along the way, where he met Superboy's parents and befriended them. However, Jor-El cannot help Lar, as he's starting to suspect there's a problem with Krypton's planetary core. Lar leaves, after accepting the medallion and note from Jor-El. Soon after, Krypton explodes and the shock wave from that cataclysm knocks out Lar's ship, damaging it and sending it toward Earth, and also placing Lar in a state of suspended animation. This explains both Lar's age and his arrival after Kal-El's ship. Lar is now close to death, and the exposure to the lead thus far in his life is cumulative and irreversible. Superboy, desperate to save Mon-El's life, retrieves a buried cache of ancient Kryptonian weapons and uses one of them to thrust Mon-El into the Phantom Zone, where Lar will be safe, as all occupants of the Zone become incorporeal and do not age. Superboy vows that he'll find a cure for Mon's lead poisoning and when he does, he'll release him from the Zone. Mon-El is grateful and thus the two part for awhile.

Cool Moments!
While I'm not sure this is the first mention or appearance of the Phantom Zone, I'm reasonably sure this is the first time we see the Phantom Zone projector...General Zod watch out!

Khronic Kryptonite Kalamaties Kause Kal-El Konstant Konsternation Department, Section 3
Hmmm, for those of you that know just how long Mon's gonna stay in the Zone, d'ya think that maybe it's all Superboy's fault? I mean, Lar's lead exposure levels didn't hit critical til Supe's little stunt with the lead asteroids. Damn do-gooders!

The Legion appears to this day in monthly comics published by DC Comics.

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