Missing: Answers to the Name “Krypto the Superdog”

Submitted mostly without comment.

Left: Krypto with Superboy by Francis Manapul, 2009; Right: Superboy #21, 2013

Left: Krypto with Superboy by Francis Manapul, 2009; Right: Superboy #21, 2013

Guys. What happened here?


  1. Maybe in anticipation of the DC vs MOTU cross-over they’re going for that Cringer to Battle Cat transformation thing.

  2. The picture on the left is entirely too hopeful, happy and not 90s edgy enough…. duh!

  3. They turned sweet Krypto, the all-American Super doggie into a rabid Hellhound? Fanboy hulk-out rage!!! RAGE!!!

    and then sadness. =(

  4. I just read the first volume of Morrison’s Action Comics and I’m pretty sure the Krypto Extreme made his appearance in there. I remember seeing a rather mean looking white dog in there somewhere, in the Krypton flashbacks I think.

    It is…odd.

    • Avatar photo Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      Yeah, he’s popped up a few times, never nearly this bizarre looking though. Just found it striking, and not in a positive way.

  5. You see, one has history and continuity, and so thus must be discarded. Otherwise, new readers might get confused.

    • Since the 2-year anniversary of the New 52 is coming up soon, I’d really like to see a story where someone analyzes DC sales number before and after New 52. Did the reboot is really bring in a bunch of new readers as hoped? Are sales up or down? Is the brand more or less successful?

    • @kennyg

      In short, yes, sales are up in 2013 compared to the previous period for 2012, which were up from 2011, which was the first year sales didn’t drop.

      More commentary here: http://forums.comicbookresources.com/showthread.php?405696-The-DC-Numbers-Estimates-Mega-Thread

      DC has had a lot of success over the last few years, in part by getting rid of boring childish things like Superman having a cute puppydog and taking those same concepts and giving them some teeth (pun intended).

    • @glennsim: I don’t know where you’re getting your numbers from, but DC’s sales are way down from 2011.

    • @Conor Kilpatrick, I read an article by Comic Book Syndicate that said DC’s numbers were up from 2011. I don’t have those numbers or a link (for now) but they did claim DC’s numbers were up.

    • Avatar photo Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      Not sure how having a loyal and occasionally playful guard dog is more childish an idea than having a pet sabertooth tiger.

    • @IthosSapien; Depends on when in 2011 you’re talking. Before the New 52? Yes the numbers are up because the numbers before the relaunch were dreadful. After the relaunch in 2011? Sales are way down since then.


    • @Conor Kilpatrick, so in a way the numbers are up from 2011? If I’m following the math. I’m curious to know why the numbers were “dreadful” in 2011 before the relaunch. I remember dropping “Batman after 2 issues because I thought the story was stupid (it was right after “Battle for the Cowl”).

    • @IthoSapien: Yes, in a way, but not in any way relevant to the discussion about how DC’s sales have fared since the relaunch, which is the real question.

    • @Conor Kilpatrick, I’m not following. In a way the numbers are up from 2011, but that’s not revenant to the conversation of how DC’s numbers are since 2011? From what I read of those articles, I think there’s stippulating factors here. Marvel is currently double-shipping every book, has an event ongoing (Age of Ultron, which is also double shipping), and as several titles for their most popular franchises (Spider-Man, Avengers, X-Men). This makes me wonder if Marvel isn’t publishing way more than 52 books each month to out-sell DC, and that would explain why they’re making so much more every month.

    • From the thread I linked:

      April update:

      DC Sales – Top 300 (Jan-Apr) 2013 – 8,718,689 estimated units.
      DC Sales – Top 300 (Jan-Apr) 2012 – 8,565,690 estimated units.

      And here are the figures for 1997-2012:

      2012 – 29,602,125 estimated units
      2011 – 26,522,201 estimated units
      2010 – 23,528,000 estimated units
      2009 – 24,126,336 estimated units
      2008 – 25,760,378 estimated units
      2007 – 29,597,217 estimated units
      2006 – 30,243,575 estimated units

      How is this not sales being up year over year?

    • @glennsim: I don’t know what the source of those numbers are.

      What I do know is what the people who actually work at DC have told me which is exactly the same as what creators have told me which is exactly the same as the above linked analysis form people who do this professionally says and which is exactly the same as what retailers that I’ve talked to have said: DC has a couple of big books right now that are pumping up their overall numbers but on aggregate the entire line is way down from the relaunch.

    • @Conor Kilpatrick, I scrolled thru that link that @glennism posted and they discuss that. They hypothesize that DC is focused on selling mid-level selling books (20-25,000 or higher) while Marvel is focused on just having all their books sell every month (hence the double shipping and $3.99 price). Also that DC cast a wide net at the start of the reboot bringing in new and lapsed readers which rocketed their sales quite a bit due to outside the box advertising and such. I don’t know if you have information that refutes that but like I said in my last post and like many people said in @glennism’s link Marvel’s current business strategies kind of throw off the numbers a bit.

      I’m still curious to know why DC’s sales were so abysmal before the New 52 reboot (obviously the books were terrible or something, but why?).

    • “What I do know is what the people who actually work at DC have told me which is exactly the same as what creators have told me which is exactly the same as the above linked analysis form people who do this professionally says and which is exactly the same as what retailers that I’ve talked to have said: DC has a couple of big books right now that are pumping up their overall numbers but on aggregate the entire line is way down from the relaunch.”

      Well, yeah. There was a huge spike in sales the month of the relaunch (and a couple months after) that nobody really expected them to keep. Is that what you are talking about? Or do you mean in the run-up to the relaunch the numbers were higher?

  6. Maybe dog means “feline” in the New 52? That picture on the left is funny because I seem to recall Justin Jordon saying his Superboy would be fun. Well I still might pick it up.

  7. Are we seeing a generational shift in the creative and editorial staff? If you were, say, 13 in 1993 that would make you 33 now.

    Like, from the people where old enough to see that ’90s comics were bad, to the people who were young enough to think the ’90s comics were awesome?

  8. Alternate title:


  9. Avatar photo Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    To be clear, my only real objection is to the depiction on this cover. In the interior pages, Krypto has been cast as more wolflike, perhaps a malamute or husky. That’s not entirely objectionable, though I tend to prefer the hound dog or labrador retriever choice. The real thing is temperament. The thing on the right is just so saddening. Especially when they got it so right on the left, and not all that long ago.

  10. I really miss pre-New 52 Superman, guys. I miss old Krypto, I miss Ma Kent being alive, I miss Conor living in Smallville, I miss Supergirl not being insane, I miss Superman not being hated/feared by the earth population as if he was a member of the X-Men, I miss EVERY SINGLE COSTUME– I just hate the new status quo in pretty much every way.

    • If only it had sold as well as, say Green Lantern. Then I doubt DC would’ve changed anything.

    • Also Pa Kent. I understand the folks who have Pre-Crisis love for the Kents dead, but I loved Ma and Pa Kent being alive, some of the best moments were Clark heading home for advice.

    • Of course, Johns killed off Pa (again) a couple years before the reboot, but, I get what you’re saying. And I agree, it was nice having at least one of them around . . .

    • I was one of those pre-Crisis types and yeah, it took me ages to get used to living Kents, but I came to love them. And Jeff LeMire’s Superboy strip was simply wonderful (I especially loved Kon-El’s pal and his clever frogs).

      And yes, thank you Paul, for a great post. I had a Twitter campaign to bring back cute Krypto going, a couple of weeks back. OK, so it only lasted an hour or so, but it was a start …

    • I’m really starting to miss pre-New 52 EVERYTHING.

  11. I am, at best, a casual Superman fan and even I am saddened to see this.

  12. So sad. WTF, DC?

  13. Well, um, OK, yeah, sigh . . .

    James Robinson’s run on the Superman titles may have been mixed overall, but I loved how he used Krypto, I really cared about the super-powered doggie for the first time. And that one issue Krypto story Busiek wrote soon before the reboot was first rate as well. So, he can work, in contemporary stories without turning him into Sabertooth’s long lost cousin or something . . .

    Now, let’s just hope that editorial doesn’t decide we need a New 52 version of Comet — that would be scarey . . .

  14. isn’t Krypto in the phantom zone right now?

  15. The dog on the left is lapping his tongue while being gently and lovingly caressed by his owner.
    The dog on the right is standing viciously and protectively in front of his owner ready to fight and defend him with his life.
    Sure, the dogs are different, but pictures from polar opposite scenarios are not the best for obtaining an objective comparison. Although I’m sure this is less about an objective comparison and more about a platform for old people sitting on porches, whittling wood to complain about democrats, the weather, disrespectful kids and how the old days were so much better. 😉

    • I’m just not sure of that animal on the right is a dog.

    • He’s not. He’s an alien creature who happens to look like a dog.

    • Avatar photo Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      I didn’t post an image from the 50s. That’s 2009. Not sure if that’s anyone’s definition of the good ol’ days. Except the new graduating class.

      I hear you though. It’s an intentional contrast, but it’s also a reasonable visualization of the tonal shift both Superboy and Krypto have undergone in the past couple years.

      And no, that alien creature doesn’t happen to look much like a dog, really.

    • HEY! I rarely complain about the weather!!!

    • @Paul
      My post wasn’t directed only at you, but also at some of the other posts that miss old DC And who seem genuinely sad that we’re in a new era.

    • @Sitara119, I wonder how those people feel about Wonder Woman and Aquaman being top sellers right now?

    • @IthoSapien
      Good question. Both of those titles have been on fire since the relaunch. Hopefully they’re start whittling little Aquaman and WW figurines once their agonizing depression lets up. 😉

  16. The picture on the left makes me smile and want to go pet my own dog. The picture on the right makes me yawn. Sadly I can’t get any more disappointed in and disconnected from DC’s current direction, particularly when it comes to Superman.

    Here’s hoping the Adventures of Superman book does a Krypto story.

  17. Man, first “Game of Thrones” influences the look of Krypton and Jor-El in “Man of Steel”… and now Silva’s gone and drawn Superboy his very own direwolf. What’s next — long white hair for Kara?

  18. Am I the only one, or does Krypto look more like a cat (sabertooth) on the right? When I first saw the image I actually thought this would be about the new “super-cat”. Or “super-mountain-lion” or whatever ….

  19. Well, one of those looks really modern, and like something I might want to read.

  20. I thought Morrison did a fine job portraying Krypto in the New 52. It was a strong, fierce, yet loving companion. The portrayal on the Superboy cover is rightly described as “extreme”, but Superman is so far from being the “all-American” hero nowadays that it doesn’t surprise me. It makes me laugh when I read that the 90’s are back at DC because they SOOO are. Does anyone really want to see Krypto like that? Reminds me why I read so few DC books.

  21. I’m fine if they want to make Krypto more of a wolf. But the cover makes him look like a saber-tooth tiger! That’s just an awful design and hopefully he looks more like a dog in the future.

  22. The first New 52 Phantom Zone story: “The Ghost in the Fortress of Solitude,” if I’m not mistaken, has IMO, the best model for Krypto for this new age of DC. He’s big and strong and A DOG! Get back to that, and everything is gonna be OK.

  23. Hopefully someone just injected the dog with some sort of cat-gene therapy and it can be cured by the end of the issue.

  24. JML (@twitter.com/JoshMLabelle) says:

    …are they serious with that cover on the right? The gaudy, badly written text that almost rhymes… god, it’s just so terrible.

  25. did we travel back to the 90’s?

  26. I’ve popped back here to ask Paul – did you read this week’s Superboy, #23? Justin Jordan begins to improve Krypto.