Action Comics #850 [Direct Sales]
(Late July 2007)

DC, 1938 Series
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3.99 USD; 4.75 CAD
Indicia Frequency
On-sale Date
Publisher's Age Guidelines
Approved by the Comics Code Authority
Indicia / Colophon Publisher
DC Comics
DC [swirl]
761941200019 85011
Matt Idelson; Nachie Castro (associate)
standard Golden Age US; then standard Silver Age US; then standard Modern Age US
saddle-stitched (squarebound #334, 347, 360, 373, 437, 443, 449, 544, 600)
Publishing Format
was ongoing series

Issue Notes

This issue has variants.

This issue went on sale 2007-05-30 (non-US) and 2007-05-31 (US) (on schedule).

Superman: Past, Present...and Future! (Table of Contents)

Superman / cover / 1 page (report information)

Renato Guedes (signed)
Renato Guedes (signed)
Renato Guedes

Superman; Supergirl [Kara Zor-El]; Legion of Super-Heroes [Shadow Lass; Ultra Boy; Brainiac 5; Chameleon; Invisible Kid]

Superman: Family (Table of Contents: 1)

Superman / comic story / 38 pages (report information)

Kurt Busiek; Fabian Nicieza; Geoff Johns
Renato Guedes
Jose Wilson Magalhaes
Renato Guedes
Rob Leigh

Superman (New Earth origin); Supergirl [Kara Zor-El]; Legion of Super-Heroes [Shadow Lass; Ultra Boy; Brainiac 5; Chameleon; Invisible Kid]; Lois Lane [Golden Age alternate] (cameo); Superman [Golden Age alternate] (cameo); Superman [Silver Age alternate] (cameo); Mr. Mxyzptlk [Silver Age alternate] (cameo); Lois Lane [Silver Age alternate] (cameo); Titano [Silver Age alternate] (cameo); Superman [Bryne era alternate] (cameo); Superman [Jurgens era alternate] (cameo); Superman [Birthright alternate] (cameo); Jor-El (flashback, cameo); Lara (flashback, cameo); Kal-El (as baby, flashback); Jonathan Kent (flashback); Martha Kent (flashback); Lana Lang (flashback); Ginny (flashback, cameo); Pete Ross (photo); Blackstar [Dr. Myra Berkowitz] (intro, flashback, cameo); Lois Lane (flashback); Justice League [Wonder Woman; Green Lantern [Hal Jordan]; Flash [Barry Allen]; Batman; Aquaman] (flashback, cameo); Amazo (flashback, cameo); Silver Banshee (flashback, cameo); Imperiex (flashback, cameo); Parasite (flashback, cameo); Solomon Grundy (flashback, cameo); Krypto (flashback, cameo); Brainiac [Silver Age alternate] (cameo); Brainiac [Bronze Age Legion alternate] (cameo); Brainiac [Bronze Age alternate] (cameo); Brainiac [TV alternate] (cameo); Brainiac [1958 Comic Strip alternate] (cameo); Brainiac [Byrne era alternate] (cameo); Zor-El (cameo); Alura (cameo); Karsta Wor-Ul (intro, cameo)
Supergirl is with the Legion in the 31st century, trying to find a way back to the 21st century. Brainiac 5 is showing her his new invention, a chronexus, which is a time viewer. While tuning it, it picks up alternate versions of Superman from a lateral timeline, but finally picks up on the Superman from Supergirl's era. They witness his birth on Krypton, then the launching of his rocket. It then goes through his years with the Kents, from a baby through 8th grade. It then shows his first public super-feat, rescuing a space plane, and then Dr. Berkowitz' accident that turns her into Blackstar, and Clark's subsequent first "date" with Lois. Then, it shows an early Justice League encounter, Clark and Lois now married talking about children, and Superman fighting various villains. Then, it shows Supergirl's first appearance on Earth, and some of her history there, including Superman's admission to Lois that it's great to have a family again. Supergirl is speechless watching that. Finally, the machine shows another adventure with Blackstar, one that Supergirl doesn't remember, so it occurs in her future. Supergirl wants to help the situation, so she insists that Brainy send her back there, mentally at least as he can't do it physically. He does, and she does help, but by "possessing" Superman, and leaves a message for him from her. But then the machine starts to act up. It shows several events from Supergirl and Superman's future: Superman fighting various Brainiacs (who resemble various past comic, TV, and comic strip incarnations), Supergirl finding her parents alive, then something that could be an enlarged version of Kandor with a woman later revealed to be Karsta Wor-Ul standing there. Finally, the machine finally blows apart, but Supergirl makes it back to the 31st century. Finally, we flash back to the 21st century, and Superman reads the message that was left for him, letting him know to hang in there, that he's not alone.

Indexer Notes

This is the first retelling of the "New Earth" Superman's origin (post Infinite Crisis). This was Karsta Wor-Ul's first appearance; she was subsequently introduced as the 3rd Kryptonian in Superman (DC, 2006 series) #668. This issue features some of the characters that were first introduced in Action Comics, including Superman, Supergirl, Brainiac, Brainiac 5, and the Parasite. Some comments by Kurt Busiek made to SupermanHomePage about the authoring of this story: "I had the original concept for the story, but came up with what I thought was a way to make it work during a long phone call with Fabian, and we worked out the general story plan together. Then we rang in Geoff, who had a bunch of character ideas and ideas for what moments we should include. It all wound up in a marathon three-way phone call, where we picked all the moments to show, worked out the scenes, focused the emotional arc of the story and carved out a beat-by-beat plot. Fabian typed up a plot based on that telephone conference, I revised it here and there and Geoff kibitzed as well."

A Rare Catch (Table of Contents: 2) (Expand) /

Batman and Cal Ripken, Jr. / advertisement / 8 pages (report information)

DC Nation 62 [May 30, 2007] (Table of Contents: 3) (Expand) /

DC Nation / promo (ad from the publisher) / 1 page (report information)

[House Advertisments] (Table of Contents: 4) (Expand) /

promo (ad from the publisher) / 8.5 pages (report information)

[Ads] (Table of Contents: 5) (Expand) /

advertisement / 3.5 pages (report information)

Related Scans
Series Information
Table of Contents
  1. 0. Superman: Past, Present...and Future!
  2. 1. Superman: Family
  3. 2. A Rare Catch
    Batman and Cal Ripken, Jr.
  4. 3. DC Nation 62 [May 30, 2007]
    DC Nation
  5. 4. [House Advertisments]
  6. 5. [Ads]
This issue was most recently modified by:
  • Jan Roar Hansen
  • Bob Hughes
  • Katie
  • Mike Nielsen
  • Jim Van Dore
  • Allen Ross
  • Ramon Schenk
  • Gregory Fischer
Issues in this series have been indexed by:
  • Bob Klein
  • Jon Ingersoll
  • Diverse Hands
  • Brian Mowbray
  • John Greb
  • Kelly Langston-Smith
  • Lou Mazzella
  • Carlos Tasada
  • John Douglas Miceli
  • Kyle Weber
  • Terry Watkins
  • Allen Ross
  • Jerry Hillegas
  • Gregory Fischer
  • Donald Dale Milne
  • Mike Nielsen
  • Bob Hughes
  • Darrel McCann
  • Ed Boner