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Adventure Comics (vol. 1)
Cover of Adventure Comics #296. Art by Curt Swan.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Format (vol. 1)
Standard (#32-490)
Digest (#491-503)
Publication date November 1938-1983
Number of issues 472
Main character(s) Legion of Super-Heroes
Superboy (Kal-El)
Green Arrow
Supergirl (Kara Zor-El)

Adventure Comics is a comic book series published by DC Comics from 1935 to 1983. It ran for 503 issues (472 of those after the title changed to Adventure Comics), making it the fifth-longest-running DC series, behind Detective Comics, Action Comics, Superman and Batman. It was revived in 2009 by writer Geoff Johns with the Conner Kent incarnation of Superboy headlining the title's main feature, and the Legion of Super-Heroes in the back-up story.[1]


Publication history

Adventure Comics began its nearly 50-year run in 1935 under the title New Comics, which was only the second comic book series published by National Allied Publications, now DC Comics. Originally a humor series, the series, which was subsequently retitled New Adventure Comics with its 12th issue (Jan. 1937), gradually turned into a serious adventure series. Issue 32 saw the title again changed to Adventure Comics, which would remain the book's name for the duration of its existence. The series' focus gradually shifted to superhero stories starting with the debut of The Sandman in issue #40. Other superheroes who appeared in the early days of Adventure included Hourman (beginning with issue #48), Starman (beginning with #61), and Jack Kirby's Manhunter (beginning with #73).

New Comics#1 (Dec. 1935). Cover art by Vin Sullivan.

A pivotal issue of the series was #103, when Superboy, Green Arrow, Johnny Quick and Aquaman moved from More Fun Comics (which was being converted to a humor format) to Adventure. Starman and Sandman's stories were canceled to make room for the new features. Superboy became the star of the book, and would appear on each cover through to 1969. Superboy's popularity in Adventure resulted in the character receiving his own title in 1949, when superhero titles in general were losing popularity.

In issue #247 (April 1958), Superboy met the Legion of Super-Heroes, a team of super-powered teens from the future. The group became popular, and would soon take over as the Adventure lead feature until issue #381 (June 1969), in which Supergirl migrated from the backup feature in Action Comics to the starring feature in Adventure. To this day, however, the title is most closely associated with the Legion.

In December, 1972, the book's theme changed from superhero adventure to fantasy/supernatural adventure. The Spectre and Black Orchid were the stars of the book during this era. Before long, though, conventional superheroes returned to the book. The last decade of Adventure starred a variety of characters and features, including Aquaman (#435-437, 441-452, 460-466, 475-478), and Superboy (#453-458). Following a run (#459-466) as a giant-sized anthology series, the heroes returned with a new Starman named Prince Gavyn (#467-478), Plastic Man (#468-478), "Dial H for Hero" (#479-490) and the Justice Society of America (#461-466). With issue #490 in 1982, the title stopped being a regular-sized 40-cent comic book, and with the following issue it began a run as a digest-sized anthology. This format lasted from issues #491-503, with most stories during this period being reprints (featuring the Legion of Super-Heroes and others), and with new stories featuring the Marvel Family and the Challengers of the Unknown. The long-running title was discontinued for good with the September 1983 issue.

80 Page Giant

Adventure Comics 80 Page Giant was released in 1998.

80 Page Giant issues were first published in the late 60's. These special issues covered Jimmy Olsen (3 issues), Supergirl, the Bizarro World, Lois Lane, etc.

Justice Society Returns

DC published an Adventure Comics #1 as part of the company's "Justice Society Returns" storyline in 1999.

Adventure Comics Special featuring The Guardian

As part of the 2008 Superman: New Krypton story arc, a special issue of Adventure Comics was published, titled Adventure Comics Special featuring the Guardian #1 (cover dated: Jan. 2009). Jimmy Olsen continues to delve into the mystery surrounding the American government's safeguards against the new Kryptonian population.


Adventure Comics (vol. 2)
Variant incentive cover to Adventure Comics #504/vol. 2 #1. Art by Francis Manapul.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule Monthly
Format Ongoing series
Publication date October 2009 – Present
Number of issues 5
Main character(s) Conner Kent/Superboy
Legion of Super-Heroes
Creative team
Writer(s) Geoff Johns
Artist(s) Francis Manapul
Clayton Henry
Creator(s) Geoff Johns
Francis Manapul

The five-issue mini-series Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds led into an all-new volume of Adventure Comics, featuring the revived Conner Kent/Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes. The main creative team of Geoff Johns and Francis Manapul debuted in a backup story in February's Adventure Comics #0.[2] A secondary feature starring the the Legion of Super-Heroes is co-written with Mike Shoemaker and drawn by Clayton Henry. The first issue of the new run of Adventure Comics was released on August 12, 2009, and features watermarked numbering marking it as both #1 and #504, thus continuing the original numeration of the series concurrently with the volume 2 numeration. The indicia of the comic book also reflects this dual numbering.

Main feature

Superboy: The Boy of Steel

The first story arc deals with the recently returned Conner Kent settling back into his life in Smallville, Kansas. Returning to live with Martha Kent, who is thrilled to take the teenager in after her husband's death, Conner returns to Smallville High School and begins keeping a journal of everything Superman has done as a costumed hero, going down a checklist titled, "What Did Superman Do?" He and the also recently-returned Bart Allen rejoin the Teen Titans, and Conner symbolizes the team being "stacked" again by destroying his memorial statue outside of Titans Tower West.

After visiting Lex Luthor's childhood home in Smallville, Superman arrives and talks to Conner about his desire to understand his "other father." Superman tells Conner not to worry about Luthor, saying that the madman is a problem for the Man of Steel. Conner remarks that the next time he sees Lex Luthor will be, "too soon." Soon after, Conner returns to the Kent home and under a similar checklist in his notebook entitled, "What Does Lex Luthor Do?," Conner checks off, "Lies to Superman."[1]

Connor continues his list of character traits inherited from Superman and Lex Luthor. He then enlists the help of his best friend, Tim Drake (Wayne). A.K.A. Red Robin in finding one of Luthor's old labs in hopes of tracking down the villain. Connor continually remarks on how much Tim has changed and how he doesn't understand why his friend is so different. While searching the lab, Connor reveals that he truly wants to find Lex only to see if there is good in him. Thinking, if there is, then Connor can move on with his life and never be concerned with his "evil half" again. While searching the lab, Tim admits that he tried to clone Connor. As well as the fact that he believes Bruce Wayne to still be alive. Connor forgives Tim for trying to replace him and tells Tim that he believes him.

Second feature

Long Live the Legion

After recounting the history of the Legion of Super-Heroes, Starman converses with a pigeon in mid-flight while having a soda and cheeseburger. While asking the pigeon if it would like to join the Legion, Starman crashes into a sign of a local Smallville bowling alley. Crashing through the roof, Starman remembers bowling as, "One of the most popular sports of the early 21st century! Like jousting." Picking up a ball and not feeling it to be heavy enough, he uses his powers to, "weigh as much as a time sphere full of inertron!" The ball is then flung through the back of the alley and into the windshield of a parked car.

Starman exclaims, "Touchdown."[1]

Collected editions

Various stories have been collected into trade paperbacks:


The series has won several awards for itself and its creators over the years, including the Shazam Award for Best Pencil Artist (Humor Division) for Bob Oksner for his work on Adventure Comics and other DC comics in 1970.

See also


  1. ^ a b c Johns, Geoff (w). Adventure Comics 1 and 2 (504/1) (August 2009), DC Comics
  2. ^ "DiDio Confirms Adventure Comics Return". Newsarama. 2008-11-17. Retrieved 2008-11-18.  

External links

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