Superman is a character that has been around for decades, which has resulted in many interpretations. Some of these are a lot older, like Superman in ‘Kingdom Come,’ or younger, like the New 52 Superman. Some of us grew up with ‘Smallville,’ which followed a Clark Kent in his teens up to his mid-20s, with the films focusing on an adult Kal-El. So how old is the Man of Steel? Here’s how old Superman has been throughout the years in comics, movies, and TV!
Throughout Superman media, Kal-El has stayed between the ages of late 20s to early 40s with some exceptions like else-world stories. In the earlier comics, he was likely in his late 20s, but over time we have seen him grow as a character and go through big life events like getting married and having a son. This would roughly place him in his late 30s to 40s. In the films, he has always stayed roughly in his 30s, with us never getting an older Man of Steel in the films with the TV shows being the same except ‘Smallville,’ which focused on a younger version of the character.
Now that we’ve briefly covered Superman-related media and his age, it’s time to analyze it in more detail. If you are interested in more, stay with us and keep reading!
Superman’s age in the comics
How old is New 52 Superman?
‘The New 52‘ was a full reboot of all the DC characters, making them all younger than their past versions. In the ‘Action Comics’ series by Grant Morrison, Superman is at the very start of his career right after college, placing him roughly in his early 20s.
This also lines up with the first Justice League storyline which is revealed to have taken place 5 years before the main New 52 continuity. After ‘Justice League Origins,’ the series picks up five years after, which also lines up with the mainline Superman title, which would then roughly place him in his mid to late 20s.
How old is Superman in DC ‘Rebirth’?
In DC ‘Rebirth,’ the Superman that existed before New 52 was brought back and was revealed to have a son, Jon Kent. Now in the mainline comic, Superman’s age has always been a little ambiguous, we have seen the character get married and have a child, so it is obvious that he has gotten older over time, but the question is by how much?
When the DC heroes realized that Flashpoint had changed everything, it was confirmed in ‘The Flash’ run that 10 years had been erased from everyone’s lives which would make the current Superman roughly in his late 30s to early 40s.
Superman’s age in movies and TV shows
How old is Christopher Reeve’s Superman?
In ‘Superman: The Movie,’ we meet Clark Kent as a baby when he lands on Earth, but we first spend time with him properly as an 18-year-old in high school. This is confirmed when the Fortress of Solitude calls to him, and Jor-El says to him, “By now you will have reached your 18th Earth year.” He then spends 12 years training his powers, making him 30 by the time we meet him as Superman.
How old is Henry Cavill’s Superman?
Just like Christopher Reeve, we first met this version of Superman as a baby, but we get very few glimpses. We also see flashbacks to his childhood where the age isn’t exactly specified, but he seems roughly early to mid-teens.
When Superman is in the integration room with Lois Lane, he specifies to the general when questioned about carrying any disease, “I’ve been on Earth 33 years, general, haven’t infected anyone yet.” Making Cavill’s version a few years older than Reeve’s at the age of 33, which was a few years older than Cavil’s was when filming.
How old is Brandon Routh’s Superman?
We have seen Routh play Superman twice on screen, once in ‘Superman Returns’ which was a sequel to ‘Superman 2,” and again in the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ Arrowverse crossover. It is speculated that these two portrayals are actually the same version of Superman which would make Superman in his early 30s in ‘Superman Returns’ and his late 40s in the Arrowverse, making him possibly the oldest version of the character on screen.
How old is Clark Kent in ‘Smallville’?
‘Smallville’ takes place over the duration of 10 years of Kal El’s life. At the start of the series, he is roughly around 15-16 years old, while Tom Welling, who played the character, was 24 years old when they started filming.
By the end of the show, Clark is working at the daily planet, married Lois Lane, and becomes Superman at roughly the age of 25 years old, which also places him at this age during the tie-in comics that came out after.
How old is Superman in ‘Superman and Lois’?
In ‘Superman and Lois,’ we see that Clark Kent has been Superman for a while and is well-established in this universe. He is also married to Lois Lane with two sons who are both in their teens.
Considering Clark had been Superman before he met Lois Lane, this means he has been Superman for at least 20 years, which would roughly place him in his early 40s.
In most adaptations of Superman, he has always ranged between his 30s-40s, with some but not a lot being in his 20s. One thing to note, though, is that Superman doesn’t age like anyone else.
Due to him absorbing power from Earth’s yellow sun, he reaches a certain age peak and ages a lot slower. This would make him look like he is in his 30s, even if he is 50. This is alluded to in ‘Supergirl’ when Winn questions why Superman looks a lot younger than he is.
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