In the distant past, a dying alien race created a number of containment devices in which to preserve their culture. They sent them into space with contact teams, intent on meeting other civilizations. When a small group of these aliens arrived on the planet Krypton, they were met by the militant Kem-L, who killed them and corrupted one of their devices. Its new mission was to preserve his ideal of Kryptonian culture by eradicating all others - and thus the device became known as the "Eradicator."
In its original form the Eradicator resembled a stylized small rocket. Its top section was a prolate spheroid, which exuded a blue glow and was approximately three times the size of an egg. This was connected via four thin mount brackets to a glossy orange tail fin section of equal length. The ten equally spaced fins each had the shape of a pointed quarter ellipse, with the tapered end extending slightly beyond the rear of the squat main cylindrical body tube.
One of the surviving aliens, known as the Cleric, took the Eradicator and left Krypton with a group of followers. Unfortunately, they died soon thereafter, as the Kryptonian genetic link to their home planet precluded their survival off-world.
The Cleric kept the Eradicator for 200,000 years, until he encountered Superman on Warworld. With the device, the two exchanged memories, and the Cleric had a vision of Superman's death at the hands of Mongul. The Cleric wished to prevent this from happening, and the Eradicator transported them to his asteroid. He noticed that the device changed to protect Krypton's sole survivor, and they used it to heal their wounds, both physical and spiritual. When the Cleric passed on the Eradicator to Superman he rapidly aged and died as the link to the Eradicator extending his life was severed.
The Eradicator's Fortress
Back on Earth, the Eradicator caused a number of bizarre events, including altering Jimmy Olsen into a malleable form, causing him extreme pain in the process. Superman threw the device into Antarctica, where it altered the ice to create the Fortress of Solitude, and possessed two scientists to create a portal to the Phantom Zone, where it drew Kryptonian artifacts to the Fortress.
When Superman recovered the Eradicator, he learned that one of his ancestors, Kem-L, created it to prevent aliens from influencing Kryptonian culture. The Eradicator tried to transform Earth into a new Krypton, and erased Superman's memory of the device when he tried to interfere.
Professor Emil Hamilton, who had previously examined the Eradicator, restored Superman's memory, and Superman then went into the Phantom Zone to stop the device. He encountered a projection of Kem-L and learned that only the House of El can control the Eradicator, but he first had to undergo a rite of passage. When Superman completed it, he commanded the Eradicator to shut down, and it complied.
The Krypton Man
In the Day of the Krypton Man arc, the Eradicator altered Superman's psyche, turning him into the ideal Kryptonian and alienating his closest friends. Superman nearly killed Draaga, and when he tried to kill Jonathan and Martha Kent, he broke the programming, fought the Eradicator, and threw it into the Sun.
The Eradicator returned in Superman: The Man of Steel #1 as an energy being. It tried to turn the Sun into a red dwarf (the type of star that Krypton once orbited), but Superman stopped it with help from Professor Hamilton.
The Last Son of Krypton
The Eradicator returned again in Action Comics #687 (June 1993), part of the Reign of the Supermen story arc, as "the Last Son of Krypton." It created a body for itself based on Superman's, and even briefly believed itself to be a Kryptonian: in fact, it had deluded itself into believing it was Superman himself. As a humanoid, the Eradicator joined forces with Superman to fight the Cyborg and stop him from destroying Metropolis. This was the second encounter between the two, as the Cyborg had nearly killed the Eradicator in a battle during the obliteration of Coast City. While its humanoid body was being healed, robots from the Fortress revealed to the Eradicator its true origins. It was seemingly killed in an attempt to shield Superman from a lethal blast of Kryptonite-based fuel, fully recharging the Man of Steel's powers in the process.
Following Superman's return, the Eradicator's apparently dead body was examined at S.T.A.R. Labs, and merged with Dr. David Connor. The merged Eradicator joined the Outsiders, and occasionally teamed up with Superman. In a 1996 three-part miniseries, the Eradicator dealt with Dr. Connor's personal life, and more of the device's history was revealed, some of which is hard to reconcile with the history from the annual.
The original Eradicator program was revealed to still exist in the Fortress of Solitude's computers and, following the destruction of the Fortress in Superman's battle with Dominus, the Eradicator program took the form of Kem-L, and again attempted to brainwash Superman. The David Connor Eradicator realized that the program was still active, and merged with the remains of the Fortress to control it.
The Fortress-Eradicator took the form of a gigantic Kryptonian battlesuit, and gained a form of multiple personality disorder based on his conflicting programming. When it learnt of the "Krypton" Krypto came from, the shock to the original directive of Kryptonian purity was enough to bring this into control, leading to his hunting down the dog as an anomaly that should not exist. Superman held him in suspended animation in his new Fortress, eventually telling him Krypto's full origin once he had learned it himself.
Most recently, the Eradicator returned to his humanoid state of being. He wears a new outfit which, like the "Krypton Man" costume, is a combination of elements from Superman's costume and Kryptonian robes. He has gained the ability to sense beings that should not be in the DC Universe, such as Mr. Majestic, which may be related to his original programming against alien influences. How his origin has been affected by the Superman: Birthright retcon is unclear.
In Superman #220 (November 2005), the Eradicator was seriously injured by an OMAC. He was said during the 2005–2006 miniseries Infinite Crisis to be in a coma at Steel's headquarters, Steelworks.
One Year Later
The Eradicator's fate during the One Year Later storyline (which is set one full year after Infinite Crisis) is unknown. A recent Superman story arc suggests he has turned into a villain in a possible future.
Powers & Abilities
The Eradicator's body was created from the genetic template of Superman's, when Superman died at the hands of Doomsday, making him Kryptonian. Being that, the Eradicator possesses similar powers to that of Superman, such as incredible strength, speed, invulnerability, heat vision and flight. He also possesses ultra acute senses but to a limited degree. Being a program from Krypton, the Eradicator possesses extensive knowledge of Krypton, is extremely intelligent, as well as the ability to compute and process information at incredible speed.
But what distinguishes the Eradicator from other Kryptonians is his ability to manipulate energy. Eradicator has vast energy manipulation abilities, ranging from being able to absorb, convert and release various forms of energy as powerful blasts from his hands or eyes. Also, after the Eradicator and Mr. Majestic fought, Mr. Majestic altered the Eradicator's programming to make him more aware. The full extent of his programming alteration is unclear, although it has been shown that he can sense beings and gateways from alternate realities such as the Bleed.
Although he has enhanced senses, the Eradicator once had to wear a special visor designed to cut down visible light, since his eyes were particularly sensitive to it.
In Other Media
Eradicator is a playable character in the Death and Return of Superman SNES video game as well as the other Supermen.
The computer program of Jor El in the television series Smallville bears many similarities to the Eradicator, including transforming Clark into an "ideal kryptonian", and possessing a man.