In the latest episode of Superman & Lois, the origin of Captain Luthor may hint at the debut of a dangerous villain from DC’s New 52 era.
WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for “Heritage,” the latest episode of Superman & Lois, which aired Tuesday on The CW.
In the pilot episode of Superman & Lois, The CW series introduced a mysterious villain known as the Stranger. While this villain kept his identity a secret, he had a personal vendetta against Superman and planned on taking him out for good. Now, in the series’ latest episode, “Heritage,” the Stranger, aka Captain Luthor, is revealed to be from another Earth where he was part of an army squadron that was annihilated by an evil version of Superman.
Now, it’s unclear who this evil Superman really is, but given what is known about Captain Luthor, it’s possible this Man of Steel is actually the series’ version of The New 52 villain H’El.
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Debuting in 2012’s Supergirl #13 by Mike Johnson and Sami Basri, H’El was introduced as a Kryptonian and friend of Superman’s parents, Jor-El and Lara. However, it turns out he was actually a clone, and when Krypton was destroyed, he ended up on Earth decades after Clark Kent had become Superman. As a Kryptonian clone, H’El had all the abilities of Superman, as well as a few others, and was determined to restore Krypton.
Now, in the latest episode of Superman & Lois, Captain Luthor approaches General Sam Lane and reveals that the two knew each other on his homeworld. Before leaving, Luthor gives Lane a dog tag that bears the Superman logo, which belonged to the soldiers who were killed by Superman. When Sam turns the tag over, he can see the number “7734” on the back, which, when turned upside down, spells out the word “hell.”
Of course, this could be a coincidence, but the ominous numbers mean there’s more to the story After all, in the flashback scene that ends the episode, an evil Superman is killing Captain Luthor’s fellow soldiers. It’s possible that this being isn’t Superman at all, but rather a clone that was created in this parallel universe. If that is the case, then Superman & Lois could have reimagined the New 52 villain as a direct clone of Superman, borrowing some cues from Bizarro’s origin, and the numbers could be a reference to his serial number.
There is still much to be revealed about Captain Luthor and his Earth, but it’s obvious this is all part of a bigger mystery — and it’s one that could reveal that the first season of Superman & Lois is building towards a showdown between Superman and H’El.
Superman & Lois stars Tyler Hoechlin, Elizabeth Tulloch, Dylan Walsh, Alex Garfin, Jordan Elsass, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Inde Navarrette and Wolé Parks. The series airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.
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