Lar Gand (Mon-El)

mon-elfilmSupergirl came back, this year on The CW, and we already have a new guy to meet, one that will be a major recurring character throughout the whole series. In last season’s finale, we saw what seemed to be a Kryptonian escape pod crashlanding in National City; now, in The Adventures of Supergirl, we finally see who’s inside…even if nobody knows who he is, yet. The alien (who’s not a Kryptonian, sorry Kara) is Mon-El, portrayed by Chris Wood, quite a famous name among Superman‘s fans. Mon-El’s presence is a promise to say the least, considering how many other characters he’s connected to in the comics (and maybe that Legion of the Superheroes‘ ring we saw last year will be justified…). Waiting to see what will happen of Mon-El in the show, let’s take a look at the original one as usual.

Not much is known about Lar Gand‘s early life: he was born on planet Daxam, prior to the two different invasions that plagued the planet. He grew up to be an explorer, and left his homeplanet when he was still quite young. During his space travel he landed on planet Krypton, wanting to study it…but the world was already on the verge of collapse. A local scientist, Jor-El, welcomed the explorer, but also urged him to leave Krypton as soon as possible; when Lar Gand asked for a safe route, Jor-El gave him the coordinates of another inhabitable planet, Earth, the same one he had sent his son Kal-El to. The planet was pretty distant, so Lar Gand was forced to enter suspended animation to reach it; after a couple of years, finally the explorer arrived on Earth, but his ship suffered some malfunction, and the stasis compromised his memory: when he landed on the alien planet, the extraterrestrial didn’t remember who he was, or why he was there. Luckily enough, before human authorities found mon-elcomics1him or his ship, he was reached by another young alien living on Earth, Superboy, who realised the newcomer’s state after a few words. Superboy took the young explorer away from plain view, and brought him to hiding. Quite unexpectedly Daxamites, who also lived under a red sun, gained powers similar to Kryptonians under a yellow sun, and Gand’s display of abilities convinced Superboy that he had to be a Kryptonian as well; when it turned out the only thing the boy remembered was that Jor-El had sent him to Earth, the young hero believed to have found a brother he didn’t even know existed. Since the “Kryptonian” didn’t remember his name either, Superboy called him Mon-El, from “Monday”, the day he had arrived on Earth, and “El”, Superboy’s family name. With a terrestrial alias, Bob Cobb, Mon-El moved to Kent Farm, and lived with his “brother”, becoming his best friend, his family and his fellow superhero. Everything was simply perfect…until Mon-El was accidentally exposed to Kryptonite, but didn’t show any sign of dehabilitation or radiation poisoning. Obviously, this made Superboy suspicious.

Since Mon-El wasn’t affected by Kryptonite, Superboy believed he was one of his many foes planning something, exploiting his loneliness. In order to expose the fraud, Superboy took a piece of lead and painted it green, in an imitation of Kryptonite he presented to Mon-El…who reacted to it with pain and spasms. Superboy believed he had discovered a liar…but, ironically, lead was truly poisonous to Daxamites, even more than Kryptonite for Kryptonians, as they did not recover when the lead was removed. The shock made Lar Gand’s memory return, and he could finally tell Superboy who he was, and what his connection with Jor-El was…and the hero found himself in the situation of having killed his best friend. Not knowing how to cure Mon-El, Superboy decided to send him to the Phantom Zone, since in that mon-elcomics2dimension there was no time, so that he could research a cure for him while keeping him alive. The process undoubtedly saved Lar Gand, but it was worse than a death sentence: still poisoned even if incorporeal, he could see everything happening in the world, but couldn’t be seen nor heard by anybody; plus, Superboy, who had grown up to become Superman, still didn’t have the knowledge nor tech to find a cure for his friend, and Mon-El ended up spending a thousand years in the Phantom Zone. Finally his torment was over when Superman asked his friends from the XXXI Century, the Legion of Superheroes, for help: the telepath Saturn Girl created a temporary antidote, allowing Lar Gand to exit from the Phantom Zone without dying. He spent some time as a honorary Legionnaire, being a friend of Superman’s, but when Brainiac 5 devised a permanent cure, he was finally free to join the team permanently. The Legion proposed to him the name Marvel Lad, but Gand had grown attached to Mon-El, and preferred to use that instead. With his obtained immunity to lead, Mon-El was the most powerful member of the Legion, even more than Superboy/Superman and Ultra Boy, a hero ready to put his abilities at the service of the entire universe.

Lar Gand is an adventurous and brave young man, a naturally heroic lad who uses his many talents and his remarkable intellect always at the service of others. As Mon-El, he’s an incredibly powerful alien: under a yellow sun, Damaxians develop the same powers as Kryptonians, so he possesses incredible super strength, speed, stamina and agility, he’s virtually invulnerable (only magic can affect him), he has heightened senses, he can see through anything but lead, he has what he calls a Thermal-Blast that works exactly like Heat Vision, and he can fly; he’s also a skilled scientist, and possesses a Legion Flight Ring, fueled by his unbreakable willpower, with all the abilities that derive from it. One of the most powerful beings in the universe, now even free from his weakness against lead, Mon-El is a man far from his planet and out of his time, an eternal stranger who looks for a place in a new world…always knowing that his place is by the weak and the defenseless ones’ side.

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8 Comments

  1. […] Lar Gand (Mon-El) […]

  2. […] Lar Gand (Mon-El) […]

  3. […] the nature of her powers makes everyone believe the culprit behind the terrorist attacks be Mon-El, but she’s later identified and defeated (it remains a mystery how she’s able to take a […]

  4. […] the others who are either prisoners or hired muscles, Draaga is a professional combatant, since Mon-El claims he’s seen him fighting on another planet (thus being able to give Supergirl a hint […]

  5. […] He dons his suit and shield for the first time in Changing, just in time to help Supergirl and Mon-El against the monstrous Parasite (another wasted villain, despite the funny The Thing references). […]

  6. […] some other years, finally, the prison was visited by Valor, the Daxamite superhero once known as Mon-El. Valor restored Alia (who assumed a humanoid form to interact with him), giving her freedom once […]

  7. […] asset for the Legion of Super-Heroes since his very arrival: using a new isotope discovered by Mon-El (a Legionnaire he himself had freed from the Phantom Zone due to an antidote of his own invention […]

  8. […] cramped. In this week’s episode of Supergirl a lot of things happened: in Wake Up, in fact, Mon-El comes back to Earth on some spaceship, but he acts weird. We learn he comes from the future, and […]


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