Krypto #24: Vs. the Kryptonite Dog

From: Superboy #83 (September 1960)

THINGS I DID NOT KNOW! The Kryptonite Man first appeared as the Kryptonite Kid in Superboy #83, and not as a full-grown enemy until Superman #299 in 1976! And in his first appearance, he had a like-powered bulldog called Dogito! (Yeah, I'm not a big fan of that name.)

Superboy first meets him in a series of dreams, where he taunts the Teen of Steel nightly. When Krypto comes home, he too suffers from these dreams, which include a kryptonite dog. The next day, the two Kryptonians are helping the town build a playground when they're approached by K-Kid and Dogito, who are turning everything they touch into deadly kryptonite. Just another dream? Fair question in the Silver Age, but no. This is real. And even hiding in a lead pipe isn't going to save our heroes.
As it turns out, Kryptonite Kid is a Blorian, and they're telepathic, so he knows all about Clark Kent and what he does during his day. So the next morning, Smallville High School has been turned into kryptonite (can Superboy solve the dilemma of having to play hooky?!), while Krypto is lured to his doom by a pile of bones.
But all of these are just taunts. K-Kid wants to torture Superboy. When our heroes meet up at an abandoned trailer park, K-Kid follows - on a bike! - and starts throwing kryptonite stuff at them. So while Superboy lay dying, he tries to buy some time by asking about Kryptonite Kid's secret origin. I mean, why do this?! Well, it seems even though a teen, K-Kid was serving a 20-year sentence on an alien world. Offered a full pardon to take part in a suicide mission/scientific experiment in which he and an astronaut dog would be launched into space, he took it.
So there you go. Explains why he can speak English. And why killing Superboy is pretty much the only opportunity this villain has to commit crimes on account of his specific powers set (well, that and the telepathy). So Superboy's done for and then...
Teen Mxyzptlk (again, didn't know there was such a thing) pops in and makes the bad guys disappear. End of the story. Whaaaaa--? Well, if Superboy died, he wouldn't have anyone to play pranks on, would he? (Don't worry, he was name-checked earlier so it's not a complete surprise.) And Krypto? He just look confused for the rest of the page. I guess he can't believe he didn't have this little to do in a story despite being on every single page, and ESPECIALLY given the natural canine nemesis he gains here.

The Kryptonite Kid AND Dogito will be back though...

BONUS! Puppy Krypto is in the third story of this same issue, "The Invasion of Krypton". These flashbacks to Kal-El's early childhood can be a little upsetting because he plays way too dangerously with his pup.
Healing machine or not, that puppy got hurt. But no worries, both of them get dosed with an anti-grav beam and get an early taste for super-powers and stop an alien invasion.
And his parent never even knew it happened! Superboy, the original latchkey kid.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

To be pedantic about it, it looks like the dog's name ISN'T Dogito, it's just terrible kerning: "...Dog!To avoid boredom..." They really needed a space after that exclamation point.

Siskoid said...

Yes, but isn't it funnier if that IS his name?

 

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