Jonathan Kent, the son of Superman (also known as Jonathan White and Jonathan Smith), appeared in costume for the first time this week, in the pages of Superman #2, and it seems to have caused quite a bit of confusion in the collector’s market.
What, after all, is the first appearance of the new Superboy?
(Who, by the way, said he wasn’t going to be called Superboy when he talked to his dad about these issues in Action Comics last week…but you can forgive him waffling on that, since the pre-Flashpoint, post-Crisis Superboy had a history of doing so as well.
When a major new character is introduced, it’s not uncommon for their first appearance to appreciate in value as the collector’s market struggles to decide how “important” the character will turn out to be. Recent breakout hits like The Walking Dead and Ms Marvel have turned out to be a huge boon for those who took the chance on their first handful of issues, or in the case of The Walking Dead, were reading when characters like Michonne or The Governor made their first appearances.
With Jonathan Kent, though, it’s one of those rare cases where people can’t really come to an agreement on his first appearance.
So this week’s Superman #2 was the first appearance of “Superboy,” as he will appear in Super-Sons, with the costume and everything.
But Action Comics #958, he took off to go join Superman in battle for the first time.
In Superman: Lois and Clark #8, Superman gave Jon his old cape, and Jon flew for the first time.
In Superman: Lois and Clark #6, he revealed that he had powers for the first time.
In Superman: Lois and Clark #1, Jon made his first appearance looking like himself and spoke for the first time.
In Superman: Convergence #2, Superman delivered his newborn son, and named him Jonathan.
In Superboy #19, readers got the story of Jon Kent, the son of Superman and Lois Lane, who would grow up to be Superboy, only to apparently die and be healed by the villain Harvest.
As you can imagine, eBay is struggling to react to Jon’s transformation into Superboy, with each of those issues available relatively inexpensively (usually starting at around $5) but some auctions asking as much as $50 or more, especially in the case of Tony Daniel’s 1:25 variant cover for Lois and Clark #1.