Superboy is a genetically-engineered life form referred to as a genomorph. He is a hybrid clone using the DNA of Superman and Lex Luthor, created by Project CADMUS after the death of the Man of Steel at the hands of Doomsday.
After Superman's death at the hands of Doomsday, Project CADMUS wanted to create a clone replacement of Superman that would follow their own agendas.
After twelve failed attempts, they succeeded in creating the thirteenth clone by merging Superman's kryptonian DNA with an unknown human benefactor. Dubbed "Experiment 13" and artificially aged to mid-teens, the clone was freed by the Newsboy Legion and escaped before any control devices could be implanted.
Arriving in Metropolis, the clone told anyone who'd listen that he was a clone of Superman and went to the mass media to announce himself as "Superboy".
Approached by representatives from LexCorp, Superboy ended up working in affiliation with WGBS and loved the limelight despite becoming involved in staged fights to shore up ratings.
After Coast City was destroyed by an unknown assailant, Superboy is duped by Cyborg Superman into joining him in a mock investigation. While Superboy was used to trick the Justice League of America into going off world in search of the alleged destroyer, Superboy later escapes the Cyborg Superman and flies to Metropolis in time to witness the return of the true Superman and join him alongside Steel in stoping Engine City from destroying Metropolis.
With the real Superman back in action, Superboy relinquishes the rights to the name and symbol and goes on a world tour before settling in Hawaii where he stylizes himself as the "Hero of Hawaii".
After being stricken and successfully cured of the Clone Plague, Superboy's age becomes locked at the age of sixteen. Furthermore he discovers that his constant flirting and "devil-may-care" attitude have been wearing on his friends' tolerance.
After a failed publicity stunt and wavering public opinion in Hawaii and abroad, Superboy disappears after getting caught in a storm and becoming marooned on the Wild Lands, an island of anthropomorphic animal-men. After escaping the island, he rejoins Cadmus and begins working as a field agent for the company before becoming a founding member of the teen superhero team "Young Justice", alongside Robin and Impulse.
Although Young Justice's first mission was technically the rescuing of the metahuman ghost-girl, Secret, the group did not officially form until an incident in which the world's adult population was kidnapped by a pre-teen with godlike powers. Teaming up with Robin and Impulse, the three heroes manage to return everything to normal. Soon after, they agreed to form an official team, dubbed "Young Justice" by the media, and are joined by Secret, Arrowette, Wonder Girl, and others. Superboy and Wonder Girl also begin developing an infatuation with each other that eventually blooms into a relationship.
Following Lex Luthor's election to presidency of the United States, Project Cadmus is closed down per the President's orders and Superboy opts to live with the Superman Family and, after participating in the "Our World at War" incident, Superboy decides to live at the Kent's Farm.
After Young Justice disbands following the death of Donna Troy, Superboy gains a new civilian identity as Clark Kent's cousin "Conner Kent" and spends his life attending school in Smallville. When Superman asks him to join a new incarnation of the Teen Titans, Superboy rejoins his friends and rekindles his relationship with Wonder Girl, however, after the new team gathers at Titans Tower in San Francisco Bay, an email is sent to Robin that reveals that Superboy's human DNA is from Lex Luthor.
Now developing typical Kryptonian powers, Superboy becomes concerned over which "parent" he would take after and when Brainiac and Luthor lead an attack against the Teen Titans and the Outsiders by using Superboy and Indigo, Luthor reveals that the reason he had donated his DNA to create Superboy was to create a sleeper agent that he could use to destroy Superman. Under Luthor's influence, Superboy rips apart Cyborg, breaks Robin's arm, and savagely beats Wonder Girl before he could shake off the brainwashing.
Horrified that he might actually be a villain instead of a hero, Conner takes a leave of absence from the Titans and secludes himself in the Kents' home, becoming so unsure of himself that, being a clone, he starts to doubt that he even has a soul.
As the Infinite Crisis incident developes, Superboy earns the ire of Superboy-Prime, who believes that he would do a better job as the world's Superboy then the clone.
Confronting him in Smallville and calling him a failure as a hero, Superboy-Prime and Superboy end up in a fight that cuts through Smallville until the Teen Titans, Doom Patrol, and the Justice Society of America join the fray and the three Flashes (Jay Garrick, Wally West and Bart Allen) pull Superboy-Prime into the Speed Force.
With her own powers disappearing, Wonder Girl volunteers to look after Conner as he recovers while the other Titans are called away to organize the relief effort in Bludhaven. Watching as the worlds of the Multiverse begin appearing and disappearing in the night sky and thinking that this may be their last night together, the two consummate their love in the Kent barn.
When Lex Luthor gives Conner the means to find the base of Alexander Luthor, Superboy leaves a powerless Wonder Girl in the care of the Kents in order to meet up with Nightwing at the Titan's Tower. Being the only two heroes available to deal with the situation, Superboy and Nightwing make their way to Alexander's fortress where they are joined by a repowered Wonder Girl and free Martian Manhunter, Power Girl, Black Adam, Lady Quark, Nightshade, Breach, and The Ray before the return of Superboy-Prime whom Superboy engages in battle again to save Nightwing's life. While vastly overpowered, Conner defiantly holds his own for a time until, in a last-ditch effort, Superboy rushes Superboy-Prime and sends both of them headlong into Alexander Luthor's multiverse tower, destroying the tower, re-merging the fluctuating worlds and foiling Alexander Luthor's plans for good.
Superboy, however, is fatally injured by the attempt and dies in Wonder Girl's arms.
Superboy was later reanimated in the 30th Century by the Legion of Super-Heroes. Brainiac 5 used the Kryptonian technology that reanimated Superman and combined it with a lock of Lex Luthor's hair to bring him back to life. Newly restored, Superboy has now returned to the 21st century to continue his dream of being a hero as great as Superman.
- Superboy is amongst the Heroes patrolling the Hero garrison at the Gotham Wastelands.
- Superboy may appear in the Knightsdome Arena while the New Villains are attempting to defeat Jesse.
- Starfire, Beast Boy, Superboy, Wonder Girl and Cyborg will appear to assist Raven's Good Soul Projection in the Gotham Wastelands if it comes under attack from New Villains.
- Superboy first appeared in Adventures of Superman #500 (June 1993).
- Superboy was originally the identity that Clark Kent adopted to use his powers to help others as a teenager in Smallville.
- Superboy was one of the first heroes to explore Hypertime, following experiences by Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.
- Originally, Superboy had no name besides "Superboy". Later, Superman gave him the Kryptonian name "Kon-El", to show that he considered him family.
- Before his Kryptonian abilities emerged, Superboy used tactile telekinesis to copy a vast majority of Superman's abilities such as flight, super strength and invulnerability.
- Following an incident where Klarion Bleak transformed all adults into children and all children into adults, Superboy temporarily lost his powers, resulting in him having to rely on a Legionnaire flight ring and an indestructible Shield to perform heroics until he regained his powers through an influx of solar energy.