Old Man Superman is secretly watching DC’s future heroes

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In a future version of the DC Universe, an elderly and inactive Superman secretly watches over the Legion of Superheroes while living among humanity.

Warning! Spoilers for Justice Society of America # 22

In a future version of DC Universe, an elderly person Superman secretly watching over a new generation of heroes. Although no longer an active superhero, the elder Clark Kent takes on the role of grandfather of the Legion of Superheroes.

There have been many versions of Superman’s future across the comics, exploring the man he becomes once he’s past his prime. If he’s still the head of the Justice League in Batman beyond or give way to a new hero to take his place, Superman tends to stand firm in his ideals. In Mark Waid and Alex Ross Kingdom come, Superman fully embodies the character that readers had known, for he became even more like himself at an older age. The iconic tale imagining DC’s heroes later in life received an epilogue in Justice Society of America # 22, written by Geoff Johns with illustrations by Dale Eaglesham and Alex Ross.

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About 1000 years after the events of Kingdom come, an elderly Superman lives secretly among humanity, watching a new generation of superheroes take flight. Standing among ordinary citizens, old man Clark watches the Legion of Superheroes fly over the city. The representation of the elder by Alex Ross Man of Steel makes the likeness to Gandhi, highlighting their similar roles in the world. Though seemingly incapable of being the Superman he once was, Clark is still the same kind-hearted man, happy to see the Justice League legacy continue.


The revelation that Kingdom Come’s Superman Lives 1,000 Years Later is an interesting extension of the impact of his Kryptonian biology under the yellow sun. Fans already knew that Clark ages slower than humans, as shown in Batman beyond and Superman All-Star. However, it was not clear how old Clark could live. Witnessing the collapse of society and helping the world to rebuild itself, this awareness Superman is a more fantastic and epic version than other iterations of his future self.

As an old man who saw a lot of deaths when he was younger, it says a lot about Superman’s future that he remains hopeful and not very cynical. Watching his fellow Justice League members pass by, he continues to look forward to a new era that they’ve inspired together. Although he doesn’t have the physical perks he once had, he still represents the best of mankind. It is quite normal that the fairy tale of Superman should conclude with him endorsing the new heroes.


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