[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/superboys_zero_hour.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:250:Don't worry, the two [[LetsYouAndHimFight become friends later.]][[note]]Left: Kon-El[=/=]Conner Kent. Right: Kal-El[=/=]Clark Kent]][[/note]]

->''"[[{{ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin}} The adventures of Superman when he was a boy!]]"''
-->--The original ''Superboy'' comic series' {{tagline}}.

Originally, when Franchise/{{Superman}} was created in 1938 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, he was shown as having made his superhero debut as a full-grown adult. Eventually, after rejecting a few proposals for such from Siegel and Shuster, someone at DC decided to create the character of Superboy, [[RetCon Superman's adventures as a youth before becoming Superman]]. This came without input or approval from Siegel (which helped strain the relations between DC and Siegel and Shuster even further). Superboy's first appearance was in ''More Fun Comics'' #101 (January-February, 1945).

As shown, Superboy fought crime in and around his small home town of Smallville, and was raised by his foster parents, Ma and Pa Kent. Like his adult self, he also had a secret identity as Clark Kent. Other supporting characters included his best friend, Pete Ross,who had accidentally found Clark's secret and [[SecretKeeper aided him without his knowledge]]; his female friend next door, Comicbook/LanaLang, who, like LoisLane years later, tried to become Superboy's girlfriend and/or find out his secret identity; Smallville's chief of police, Chief Parker; and [[KryptoTheSuperdog Krypto]], Superboy's pet dog from Krypton.

While some of Smallville's threats came from a rather high number of gangsters and bank robbers, some actual supervillains would also show up, including the Kryptonite Kid and most famously, young LexLuthor (who was initially friends with Superboy; however, a laboratory accident [one that rendered him bald] and a series of disastrous, humiliating attempts to improve Smallville's life with his inventions--requiring Superboy to intervene each time--made him vow that the only way he'd be able to prove his intellectual prowess to the world would be to destroy Superboy... and later, Superman).

In 1958, Superboy was invited by three youths from the 30th century to join their superhero group, the ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}}, whose stories became a recurring feature (before graduating to their own comic) in Superboy and Superman comics.

Various stories would show how Ma and Pa Kent eventually died shortly after Clark's graduation from high school, an event that affected him greatly, along with Superboy attending college and how he changed his name to Superman.

Then came ''CrisisOnInfiniteEarths'' and the subsequent PostCrisis Byrne revamp in 1986, which after 40+ years of existence [[RetGone retconned Superboy out of existence]]. Under Byrne's origin, Superman was once again shown as having started his career as an adult. This caused a ContinuitySnarl with the ''Legion'' comics, which was fixed by stating that a separate Superboy character was created in a "[[AlternateUniverse pocket universe]]" by the Legion villain known as the Time Trapper [[CosmicRetcon just to preserve the Legion's history]]; the Legion was redirected there everytime they traveled to what they thought was Superboy's time. The Pocket Universe became a major recurring storyline for both the Legion and for the Post-Crisis Superman. Pocket Superboy sacrificed himself to save both his universe and the Legion from the Time Trapper. Superman eventually violated ThouShaltNotKill to execute the Pocket Universe equivalents of General Zod [[TerribleTrio and his henchmen]] for killing ''[[ApocalypseHow everyone]]'' on their Earth except for the "Matrix" {{Supergirl}}. Finally, the editors decreed that the Pocket Universe and its Superboy be written out of continuity altogether (in yet another CosmicRetcon).

After the early [[TheNineties 1990s]]' ''TheDeathOfSuperman'' storyline, a new version of Superboy came into existence--this one an artificially created teenage clone. The character first appeared in ''The Adventures of Superman'' #500 (June, 1993), created by Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett. Exactly who he is a clone of was {{retcon}}ned, but he is currently a combination of Superman and Lex Luthor. This version eventually was befriended by Superman, who gave him an honorary Kryptonian name, "Kon-El." Kon also met and stayed briefly with Ma and Pa Kent (who no longer were dead in Superman's adult years post-Crisis), where he gained an identity of "Conner Kent".

Several alternate versions of Superboy were also seen over the years (including the aforementioned "Pocket Universe" version). The most prominent one is Superboy-Prime, a formerly heroic alternate-Earth Superboy seen in ''Crisis On Infinite Earths'' who reappeared in modern continuity as an EvilTwin of Superman/Superboy. The original Superman-as-a-boy has also been restored to continuity.

In the late 2000s, DC Comics fought a legal battle with the surviving family of Superman's creators over the rights to Superboy, which due to a quirk of copyright law can be reclaimed by them (though a subsequent ruling has stated that DC can claim rights to the concept of Superboy, the teenage clone of Superman even if the Siegel/Shuster estates have rights to the Superman-as-a-boy version of Superboy). The effect of this lawsuit has been that DC refused to use the name "Superboy", so Kon-El died, Superboy-Prime was called "Superman-Prime", and the ''WesternAnimation/LegionOfSuperHeroes'' cartoon stars a "young Superman" rather than Superboy. The lawsuit is not yet over, but currently DC feels it can use the name again, so Kon-El is back, and Superboy-Prime gets to be called that again.

The most recent change in Superboy's status quo came in the aftermath of the CrisisCrossover ''Comicbook/{{Flashpoint}}'', as part of the line-wide reboot known as either "The {{New 52}}" or "[[FanNickname The DCnU]]". Right now, "Superboy" is a biological experiment of the conspiracy known as N.O.W.H.E.R.E, made from Superman's DNA and that of several others, both human and alien. [[spoiler:Or so we were told. He is eventually revealed to be a clone of Superman and Lois Lane's child, Jon, from the same future the leader of N.O.W.H.E.R.E. comes from.]] He is currently being used by them as a living weapon, under the supervision of both "Red", a.k.a. [[{{Gen13}} Dr. Caitlin Fairchild]] (the last survivor of the team of scientists working on him) and Rose Wilson, a young mercenary hired to make sure that he stays under control. This Superboy has Kon-El's tactile telekinesis, but virtually none of the empathy of his earlier incarnation; he just wants to escape N.O.W.H.E.R.E., and he's not picky about what he has to do until he can.

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Superboy comic series]]
!! Kal-El version:
** ''More Fun Comics'' (1945-1946)
** ''Adventure Comics'' (1946-1962) (as the lead feature), 1962-1969 (as part of the Legion of Super-Heroes feature)
** ''Superboy'' (1949-1973), becomes ''Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes'' in 1973; Superboy leaves the Legion in 1979
** ''Adventure Comics'' (1977-1978)
** ''Superman Family'' (1978-1979)
** ''The New Adventures of Superboy'' (1980-1984)
** ''Superboy: The Comic Book'' (based on the live-action Superboy series)
!! Kon-El version:
** ''The Adventures of Superman'' (1993 - 1994, during ''Reign of the Supermen'')
** ''Superboy (vol. 4)'' (1994-2002)
** ''Superboy and the Ravers'' (1996-1998)
** ''Adventure Comics'' (2009 - 2010)
** ''Superboy (vol. 5)'': (2010 - 2011)
** ''Superboy (vol. 6)'': (2011 - ongoing)
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Media spinoffs featuring Superboy]]
!! Kal-El:
** The 1960s {{Filmation}} animated Superman series featured Superboy cartoon segments.
** ''Superboy''/''Series/TheAdventuresOfSuperboy'' (1988-1992 live-action series)
** ''{{Smallville}}'' (though this centers around a costumeless teenage Clark Kent)
** ''WesternAnimation/LegionOfSuperHeroes'' features a teenage Clark wearing the Super-costume, but because of the legal issues mentioned above he was called Superman instead of Superboy, as was originally intended.
!! Kon-El:
** ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' (2011 animated series)
** [[spoiler: Season 10 of ''{{Smallville}}'']]
** While not a direct adaptation, ''Legion of Super-Heroes'' has a similar teenage Superman clone called Superman X/Kell-El, who wears a costume similar to Kon-El's.
[[/folder]]

----
!!Tropes associated with Superboy

'''Clark Kent/Kal-El'''
* AlreadyMetEveryone: He even met {{Franchise/Batman}} and [[{{Nightwing}} the first Robin]].
* AlternateUniverse: The post-Crisis Pocket Universe and pre-Crisis Earth-Prime versions of Superboy (both young Clark Kents).
* BlondBrunetteRedhead: Lois and Lana Lang are 2/3rds of this.
* In a story (based on a script from the ''Superboy'' Live Action TV series that wasn't, [[http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2011/12/23/comic-book-legends-revealed-346/ apparently]]) Superboy flies out into space in order to make a home movie type film to show his friend that the friend's father was a hero during the war. Superboy goes faster than light so he can film the light coming from earth which shows what happened in the past.
* ComicBookTime: The pre-Crisis Superboy's time-era varied over the decades as taking place in the relative past of Superman, and thus the Boy of Steel was shown as operating in TheThirties, TheFifties (largely skipping TheForties), TheSixties, and even TheSeventies (by the end of Superboy's pre-Crisis run/the 1985 "Superman: The Secret Years" miniseries), until being retconned out of existence in the Byrne Superman revamp.
** With his restoration to PostCrisis continuity (though with Superboy now operating mainly in the Legion's era), Superboy/teenage Clark Kent's time-era is now TheNineties (skipping TheEighties).
* ContinuitySnarl: Inverted; while removing Superboy from canon after Crisis didn't affect Superman, it did affect the Legion of the Super-Heroes big time.
* DemotedToExtra: The ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}} was the ''cause'' of this for him. They originally appeared as supporting characters in a 1958 Superboy story, then starting in 1962 they appeared as the backup feature in ''Adventure Comics'' where Superboy had been the star since 1946. Within a year they had taken over the comic, reducing Superboy to the back up in what had been ''his'' title, and not long after solo Superboy stories stopped appearing altogether (though he continued to appear as a member of the Legion.) A decade later they repeated the feat when they started appearing in ''Superboy'' as a backup feature, which was renamed ''Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes'' and eventually just ''Legion of Super-Heroes'' as they again took over the comic and Superboy got PutOnABus.
* {{Expy}}: Lana Lang essentially served as a teenaged Expy of ComicBook/LoisLane.
* UsefulNotes/TheInterregnum: Superboy first appeared late in UsefulNotes/TheGoldenAgeOfComicBooks but really hit his peak in TheFifties where he was one of the few superheroes to thrive, holding down two titles when the superhero market generally was at its lowest ebb. Ironically he actually suffered in popularity once the Silver Age dawned and he got DemotedToExtra in the early Sixties thanks to the surge in popularity of ''The Legion of Super-Heroes''.
* JerkJock: Bradley "Bash" Bashford.
* KidAppealCharacter: The reason for his creation.
* KidHero: Of course.
* Letters2Numbers: Superboy does this in order to remove Luthor's fifth dimensional powers (siphoned off of Mr. Mxyzptlk) in ''Superboy #131''.
* MeaningfulRename: Superboy changed his name to Superman at some point during his college years, with several different stories published explaining how this happened. However, all the versions agree that Clark realized he's not a kid anymore, and felt it was time he had a more adult name.
* MultilayerFacade: In #107, Red Kryptonite makes Clark jealous of himself as Superboy. He proceeds to reveal his superpowers and starts doing his fantastic feats openly. Some out-of-town criminals who arrived in Smallville to kill Superboy with Green Kryptonite learn of this and make plans to strike Clark at his home. Eventually the Red K's effect wears off and Clark proceeds to extricate himself from the crisis [[http://www.supermanfan.net/main/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/showoff-6.jpg via the trope]]. He makes up a story explaining that he knew that the criminals wanted to kill Superboy but didn't know when they'd strike, so he posed as Clark in cooperation with the Kents to force their hand.
* PutOnABus[=/=]RetGone: He was written out of Superman's backstory as of ''CrisisOnInfiniteEarths''.
** TheBusCameBack: And brought back following ''InfiniteCrisis''.
* SiliconBasedLife: Superboy had to save a race of silicon-based aliens called the Vulxans in ''The New Adventures of Superboy #7'' (1980).
* SpinoffBabies: Probably the ''first'' example of this, with Superboy first appearing in 1945's ''More Fun Comics'' #101.
* {{Superdickery}}: A staple. Adventures ranged from Lana Lang constantly getting powers, trying to find out Superboy's identity, or something along the lines of Smallville going through an obesity epidemic due to radioactive milk.
* ThePresidents: He met UsefulNotes/FranklinDRoosevelt ''and'' JohnFKennedy... [[ComicBookTime both while they were in office]].
** [[ScrewDestiny He tried to save]] UsefulNotes/AbrahamLincoln twice with some TimeTravel. He succeeded the second time... [[spoiler: shame it was an AlternateUniverse.]]
* TimeTravel: A constant for all Superboys, since the character is closely connected to the ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}}.

'''Conner Kent/Kon-El'''
* AlternateUniverse: Kon-El meets and teams up with the Kal-El version Superboy in several post-Crisis storylines, including "ZeroHour" and "Hypertension."
* AmbiguouslyBrown: Tana Moon, before it was revealed that she's native Hawaiian.
* AppropriatedAppellation: In his early appearances, he insisted on being called Super''man''. It wasn't until Superman returned from the dead and told Kon that he'd be honored to let Kon use the name "Superboy" that he started to take to it. And even then, the new Superboy told Big Blue, "When I turn 21... watch out."
* BackFromTheDead: Killed off in ''InfiniteCrisis'', resurrected in ''FinalCrisis: [[ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}} Legion of Three Worlds]]''.
* BlondBrunetteRedhead: He once had a LoveDodecahedron between Tana Moon (brunette), Roxy Leech (blond) and Knockout (redhead).
* BrainwashedAndCrazy: As with his [[{{Superman}} "dad"]], he's a prime target for this trope. Happened to him when he was with the Young Justice as well as another time when Poison Ivy used him for this purpose. His entire purpose for being created by Lex Luthor was to [[spoiler:act as a [[ManchurianAgent sleeper agent]] in the superhero community]], and the Black Lanterns attempted to take control of him again. Fortunately, by this time, Superboy had become GenreSavvy, and trained himself to retain ''some'' measure of control even while brainwashed.
* ChestInsignia
* CivvieSpandex: Currently the trope poster boy.
* ClarkKenting: As Conner Kent.
* CloningBlues: He falls into this occasionally, after several years of being TotallyRadical.
* ComicBookTime: One story during ''ReignOfTheSupermen'' specifically references BillClinton as POTUS. Furthermore, in the time since he was created, babies born within the same month have grown up and become ''legal''.
* CostumeCopycat: Kal-El Superboy initially accuses Kon-El Superboy of such in their ZeroHour crossover meeting in ''Superboy'' #8, before learning the truth about what's going on.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Once he learned that he was made with {{Lex Luthor}}'s DNA, the cocky, brash hero got much angstier.
* EvilKnockoff: Match
* ExecutiveMeddling: The reason behind Conner's death in ''InfiniteCrisis''. The higher-ups wanted a sidekick attached to one of [[Franchise/{{Superman}} The]] [[Franchise/{{Batman}} Big]] [[Franchise/WonderWoman Three]] to die, as {{Supergirl}} had in ''CrisisOnInfiniteEarths''. Originally, they picked {{Nightwing}}, but the writers were appalled at the idea of killing of Dick Grayson, one of the most beloved comic book characters of all time, and so the execs caved and settled for Superboy instead.
** That and around the same time, DC lost a lawsuit to the Siegel family, and [[RealLifeWritesThePlot actually lost the rights to the Superboy name.]]
* FunPersonified: Before going DarkerAndEdgier as Conner Kent.
* HalfHumanHybrid
* HomosexualReproduction: The comics version is the biological mix of [[FoeYay Superman and Lex Luthor]]. Yeah.
* HeroicBSOD: After Luthor brainwashes him just before ''InfiniteCrisis''.
* HotBlooded
* {{Hypocrite}}: In ''Teen Titans'' #100, he came to the conclusion that the only way to deal with the three clones of himself created by Superboy-Prime was to murder them with kryptonite he'd been keeping in his room as a fail safe, despite all the heartache and angst he'd been going through ever since he learned he was cloned from Lex Luthor and fearing that he may have been evil all along.
* IKnowYoureInThereSomewhereFight: Bart to Conner, just before ''InfiniteCrisis'', and then Cassie to Conner, during ''BlackestNight.''
* IntercontinuityCrossover: At the peak of his popularity, Conner was one of the Main Events of ''Marvel Vs DC''. He lost to Spider-man (Ben Reilly).
* KidANova: Girls whom he's dated or have been attracted to him include: Tana Moon, Roxy Leech, Knockout, Sparxx, [[TwinThreesomeFantasy all THREE of]] [[ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}} Triad/Triplicate Girl]]'s [[MesACrowd split selves]], [[ComicBook/{{Batgirl 2000}} Cassandra Cain]], Dr. Sterling Roquette, WonderGirl, [[{{Supergirl}} Kara-Zor-El]] (Pre-Crisis), [[WesternAnimation/YoungJustice M'gann M'orzz]] (Miss Martian) and Lori Luthor.
* KidAppealCharacter
* KissingCousins: This one is complicated. Back when they first met, Kon-El and {{Supergirl}} II/(Matrix) were not related, and Superboy used to hit on Matrix with impunity. He also later enjoyed mutual flirtation with the ''Pre-Crisis'' Kara Zor-El when she was torn from time and space. Most subtext between the two was dropped when it was realized that Superboy is Superman's "offspring", but in the ''BlackestNight'' crossover, a Black-Lantern-ring-possessed Superboy taunts WonderGirl (his girlfriend at the time) by saying that when he's alone, it's his ''"cousin"'' [[ADateWithRosiePalms he fantasizes about]].
** Later on, there was Lori Luthor, who was actually ''disappointed'' that he saw her as a cousin.
* LetsYouAndHimFight: between Kal-El Superboy and Kon-El Superboy in the "ZeroHour" crossover (as this page's picture indicates).
* LuckilyMyPowersWillProtectMe: Hey, has Kon-El mentioned that he has tactile telekinesis? Because he does.
* ManchurianAgent: Part of the arc where he [[spoiler:discovers Lex Luthor shares half of his DNA which enabled Lex to use him via this trope as well as the BrainwashedAndCrazy trope]].
* MustNotDieAVirgin: Conner and Cassandra's last night together before the conclusion of ''InfiniteCrisis''. Also counts as TheirFirstTime.
* NatureVersusNurture: During his DarkerAndEdgier years, he's all about this trope. In the earliest years, his "daddy" was Paul Westfield and later, it was {{retcon}}ned to be LexLuthor instead. Neither of them are very nice people. So, Superboy constantly questions whether he was destined to become good or evil based on the genes provided by Superman or his human father.
* RhymesOnADime: Supporting character Roxy Leech had a friend with the appropriate name of The Poet.
* StuffedIntoTheFridge: Tana Moon during the ''Sins of Youth'' storyline.
* SuperPoweredDate: He's done this numerous times. Most notably for Cassandra Cain (where he built a castle in the sky made out of clouds), and Cassie Sandsmark, where he levitated a picnic bench during a romantic dinner.
* TotallyRadical: He started out like this, before he was retooled to becoming Mr. CloningBlues
* [[{{Mix-And-Match Man}} Mix-And-Match Man]]: Conner is a clone of both {{Superman}} and LexLuthor.
* TemporalMutability: Continuity seems to place it somewhere between Types I - IV. The modern Superboy [[spoiler:technically became a ''time traveler'', every bit as out of place in this era as Booster Gold. His "current" self is still a corpse, slowly recovering within the Fortress of Solitude. Kon-El is careful not to disturb the body resting there, as he isn't quite sure what will happen to himself if he does. Other than that, though, the DC universe's rules on time travel are malleable enough to allow Conner to exist in the present without worrying too much about screwing up the timestream.]]
* TimeTravel: Like Kal-El, Conner has had many adventures with the Legion of Super-Heroes.
* UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny: He once tussled with Spider-man (Ben Reilly) during the ''Marvel Vs DC'' event.
* YouAreNumberSix: Conner Kent was designated "S-13" at Cadmus, in relation to being the thirteenth (and only successful) clone of Superman.

'''Superboy, Post-Flashpoint Reboot ({{New 52}})'''
* AmazonianBeauty: Dr. Caitlin Fairchild, who is drawn with far more muscular frame than back in her {{Gen13}} days.
** The unnamed female antagonist in Issue #3 also counts.
* AntiHero: Of the NominalHero kind. This version of Superboy has no interest in heroics beyond what it takes to survive/gain his freedom. Between the first and second issues, he kills many of his captors by reflex and feels no remorse or guilt, tortures a group of soldiers who hold him at gunpoint, and flat out threatens to kill anyone who stands in his way.
** Issue #4 seems to be steering him towards being a KnightInSourArmor.
* AwesomenessByAnalysis: He taught himself to talk and communicate by watching others do it.
* BaldOfEvil: Depending on how you view his "anti-hero" antics, Superboy is this when fresh out of the test tube.
* BecomeARealBoy: His character development seems to be headed in this direction. In fact, he uses these exact words in issue #6.
* BelligerentSexualTension: Superboy and Rose Wilson
** The fight between Superboy and WonderGirl in ''Comicbook/TeenTitans'' is even more blatant. All the two talk about is how cute they find each other while trying to smear their faces into the sidewalk.
* BizarreAlienBiology: In addition to the Kryptonian side of his DNA, Superboy states that his "brain" is, in fact, every single atom of his body.
* BloodKnight: Rose Wilson
* BlueAndOrangeMorality: Superboy sometimes has trouble understanding moral issues, as he hasn't really had much time to learn about it. He honestly doesn't understand why [[spoiler:robbing a bank]] gets him complaints.
* BoisterousBruiser: Superboy, definitely. Rose Wilson even moreso.
* BullyingADragon: How most N.O.W.H.E.R.E. staff and mooks treat Superboy.
* CloningBlues: The {{New52}} version of ''Comicbook/{{Superboy}}''. Even more so than his pre-Flashpoint incarnation. Supergirl and H'el treat him like a monster at first because of a clone rebellion in Krypton's past. The name "Kon-El" is Kryptonian for "abomination of the house of El". [[spoiler:The only reason he even exists is because Harvest wanted a guinea pig he could experiment on to find a cure for his "son's" (Jonathan Kent, the future son of Superman and Lois Lane) genetic problems. Having apparently done so, Harvest now wants Superboy dead.]]
* ConsummateLiar: Zaniel Templar. Superboy acknowledges it, but knows he has to play along.
* DidntSeeThatComing: [[spoiler:See "NeckLift" below.]]
* DoesNotKnowHisOwnStrength: Becomes a source of angst when he realizes that he can't be around ordinary people without killing them.
* {{Expy}}: While not technically an expy, this version of Superboy has attitudes more in line and a temperament much closer to the Conner Kent shown in ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice,'' especially in his willingness to use overwhelming force and temper control issues, though his tendency to kill and torture is unique.
* FakingAmnesia: Superboy's cover story in the "small town" simulation.
* FalseFlagOperation: Templar arranged for one of N.O.W.H.E.R.E.'s own bases to be attacked in order to set up his agenda.
* FieryRedhead: Dr. Caitlin Fairchild. Aka, "Red".
* FunWithAcronyms: There has been no indication as to what N.O.W.H.E.R.E. stands for.
* FutureSpandex: N.O.W.H.E.R.E.'s uniforms, and Superboy's "Containment Suit".
* HiredGuns: Rose Wilson
* InTheBlood: Superboy's instinctual affection for farms in rural Kansas.
** Accompanied by him completely ignoring someone in a burning building. Red wonders if this means that he has a "[[LexLuthor Deeply pathological, megalomaniacal narcissist, the likes of which the world has never known]]" as a donor. It was, however, revealed that Superboy was aware that the people in the fire were just part of a simulation, and he was giving them the same concern that [[VideogameCrueltyPotential most people give random NPCs.]] [[spoiler:Lex Luthor isn't his donor, as he is actually a clone of Superman and Lois Lane's future child.]]
* LackOfEmpathy: Superboy. Although in issue #6, he suspects that he's starting to feel a spark of it.
* MixAndMatchMan: It's implied that ''this'' version of Superboy isn't just Kryptonian and human, but a ''mix'' of other alien species.
** [[spoiler:He's eventually revealed to be a clone of Superman and Lois Lane's future child, Jon.]]
* MoralityChain: Fairchild is acting as this for Superboy. In fact, she insists on it.
* MythologyGag: [[spoiler: Jon Lane Kent, the son of Superman and Lois from a possible future and template for Superboy, wears a costume that looks a lot like the 90s Superboy costume]].
** Adding on to that, [[spoiler: Superboy's status as an opposite morality clone of another Superboy makes him the Nu52 version of [[EvilKnockoff Match]]. Jon Kent and the Post-Crisis Superboy were emotional and extroverted teenagers, while Match and Nu52 Superboy are their stoic and technically superior clones. Jon Kent was even mentioned as having genetic issues, a common problem for the first version of Kon-El.]]
* TheNeedless: Superboy states that he doesn't need to eat or sleep.
* OmniscientCouncilOfVagueness: N.O.W.H.E.R.E.
* OutlawCouple: The young couple that appear in issue 3.
* NeckLift: [[spoiler:Fairchild surprises Superboy with on of these when she [[TheReveal Reveals]] her powers for the first time.]]
* OnlySaneWoman: Dr. Caitlin Fairchild, the only one who bothers trying to treat Superboy like he's not a thing.
* PsychicPowers
** {{Telepathy}}
** {{Telekinesis}}
** {{Flight}}
* RedAndBlackAndEvilAllOver: Used at first to help diferentiate him from Superman. In the new DC universe it was intended to make him look sinister in comparison to the Comicbook/TeenTitans, but since they also wore a lot of red and black, it didn't really work.
* RedEyesTakeWarning: When using his telekinetic abilities.
* ReluctantMadScientist: Dr. Caitlin Fairchild
* ReverseMole: Umber, who is a spy for Lois Lane.
* SimulatedUrbanCombatArea: Where Superboy spends the majority of his time after being released from the tank.
* TheStoic: Superboy. He's largely introspective and calmly rationalizes everything around him.
** NotSoStoic: When he starts getting a no-holds-barred beatdown in issue #2.
* VitriolicBestFriends: Turns out that Rose and Fairchild are this, to the point that Fairchild left something behind for Rose to find if anything happened to her.
* WatchingTheReflectionUndress: A superpowered variation occurs in ''[=Superboy=]'' #10: Superboy calls out that he's started their campfire, but when she doesn't answer, he searches and is stunned to walk in on Wonder Girl (Cassandra Sandsmark) bathing in a lake. Wonder Girl angrily calls him a pervert and tells him to turn around. Superboy turns around, but puts his hand on the ground and smiles. Wonder Girl remembers that he can "see" through what he is touching and angrily throws a rock at the back of his head to get him to cut it out.
* WhatMeasureIsANonHuman: Only "Red" thinks of Superboy (who is half-alien ''and'' a clone) as a human. (Although Rose may have a soft spot for him, too.)
* WhiteHairBlackHeart: Rose Wilson has beautiful white hair, but is an unrepentant ProfessionalKiller and BloodKnight.
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: [[spoiler:Harvest wants him dead for this reason.]]