On Krypton it was a tradition. Every year, a deserved, worthy child would be sent for an internship to a different planet within the same universe. Let’s call this universe Distance Centre or DC for short.


Many years ago…


On Krypton, Kal-El was born to Jor-El, a scientist by profession. Jor-El was a divisive figure on the planet with some of his experiments drawing the ire of the military regime that controlled Krypton. Jor-El also wasn’t married and he knew he would face questions about the legitimacy of his child – was Kal-El a living being or a laboratory experiment?


General Zod, who tutored every child on Krypton, began to visit Jor-El and take an undue interest in Kal-El. To avoid further questions, Jor-El pretended to send a pod into the DC Universe, or so it was believed. In reality, Kal-El was hidden from public view on Krypton, until the age of 7, when he was sent to the tutorship of General Zod, under whom he trained for a few years.


Kal-El excelled under General Zod and was selected as the intern who would travel to one particular planet, this time Earth. Kal-El was adopted by Jonathan and Martha Kent and christened Clark Kent – a hyphenated first name was not common on Earth.


During his internship…


Clark was meant to attend school, play sports, do household chores and love his adopted parents. He learned to do the latter three well but did not see the purpose of attending a school on Earth. His actual schooling came via video lessons with his father Jor-El, who taught him soft skills and with General Zod, who trained him in military practices. Both would appear as holograms, sometimes together, in the dead of night. It is why Clark would always be late to school and grumpy as well, leading to many scuffles and fights.


Post distance education …


His education did not end there, though. Clark did not know he was being groomed as a successor to General Zod – General Kal-El if you will. To train him for battle, armies were sent to Earth to attack Clark. To train him for loss, he was given the false news of Jor-El’s death and his adopted father was killed by the winds of Krypton. He was made to battle a bat to overcome his fears, with which he became friends with later on. To train him to face rejection, Lex Luthor was also told to oppose Clark’s every move. To train him to face love, well, Clark did that on his own when he met Lois Lane.


And then the adventure…


During one of his adventures in Metropolis with his friend The Bat, Clark was recalled to Krypton. General Zod had taken ill on Krypton and was put into hibernation. Clark fell unconscious and a funeral was held, to train him for death. From his casket on Earth, Clark hyper-looped to the place where he was known as Kal-El.


Large, welcoming contingents were greeted with a sight of one of their own in a blue spandex, a red cape and red speedos. The letter S was emblazed on his chest. “What is that,” he was asked. “Superman,” Kal-El replied. Krypton’s distance education program was an unequivocal success.



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