Superman: The Movie (1978)
Action Comics #845
|Created by||Mario Puzo|
|Place of origin||Krypton|
Non is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. He first appeared in the 1978 film Superman: The Movie portrayed by actor and former boxer Jack O'Halloran. The character made his comic book debut in Action Comics #845 (January 2007). An accomplice of General Zod and an adversary of the superhero Superman, he is typically depicted as having been imprisoned in the Phantom Zone, along with Zod and Ursa, among whom he is portrayed as the strong and silent muscle.
In television, the character was portrayed by Chris Vance in the Arrowverse series Supergirl as the antagonist of the first season.
In October 2006, film director Richard Donner, noted for his work on the first two Superman movies, began to write Action Comics in collaboration with Geoff Johns. After an unidentified Kryptonian boy crash lands in Metropolis and is taken in by Lois Lane and Clark Kent, he is followed by three more Kryptonians in identical vessels: General Zod and Ursa (who claim the boy as theirs) as well as Non. In these comics, Non is portrayed as being more bulky than in the Superman II movie but maintaining the same personality.
It was revealed that Non was a friend to Jor-El, as well as a member of the Kryptonian Council, while they discovered Krypton's instability. After leading a separatist movement, Non was abducted by the Science Council and lobotomized, leading to his current status as a minimally-verbal brute. Although now a highly aggressive and mentally lacking enforcer for Zod, Non has apparently retained a level of his old personality and kindness, when dealing with young children. In another Action Comics Annual, it is explained that after Zod and Ursa give birth to their son (who would later become known as Christopher Kent), Non behaved not only docile but caring towards Chris during his early childhood.
After being re-imprisoned in the Phantom Zone by Superman and Chris, Zod, Ursa, and Non once again returned to the Prison. Unknown to the first two, Chris took secret refuge in the prison with only Non aware of him. Non continued to behave as a protective caretaker towards Chris, bringing him food and hiding him from his parents. When Chris was at last found and tortured by his parents, another Kryptonian, Thara Ak-Var, arrived to rescue Chris; Non was quick to help them as a final act of his humanity and kindness.
Non is punished for this act and made an aspirant in the Kryptonian military under lieutenant Asha Del-Nar, in a unit designated Red Shard. Superman is placed into the Military Guild, named Commander of the Red Shard unit. Superman finds the other Aspirants are forcing Non to fight a wild animal as a hazing, which he stops. Since this he has been loyal to Kal-El. When trying to round up some wild thought-beasts, Non sees himself holding a young girl.
While on Earth in the Superman II movie, Non had superhuman strength, virtual invulnerability, superhuman speed, flight, marginal heat vision, and super breath. Non stands at 6'6" and is exceptionally muscled which further augments his superhuman strength to a degree. In recent comics, Richard Donner has portrayed Non's strength as greater than that of General Zod and Ursa put together due to his greater size and muscle mass, possibly outmatching that of Superman and other mature Kryptonians; yet Non is neither as intelligent nor as brutal as the other two and thus cannot exert the full measure of his superhuman strength nor can he improvise its use. The movie version of Non is a birth-defect mute (although his comic-book alter-ego, Kru-El, spoke whole sentences) and appears to also be less intelligent than General Zod and Ursa; as stated by Jor-El, "His only means of expression are wanton violence and destruction."
Additionally, similar to Zod and other Kryptonian Phantom Zone escapees, Non rarely has enough time beneath the yellow sun of Earth to absorb and metabolize enough yellow sunlight to experience the full measure of his abilities as he and the other escapees are typically always defeated and banished back to the Zone before any significant length of time passes. As such, if Non was allowed enough time in the Sun to fully charge his cells with yellow solar energy, he would be significantly more physically powerful and more potent with superhuman strength than any other adult Kryptonian, possibly even Superman.
Like all Kryptonians, he is vulnerable to Kryptonite as well as the light of a red sun; he may be vulnerable to magic and mind control as well due to the raw physical nature of his Kryptonian virtual invulnerability, though this has never been seen. An atomic bomb would also cause significant injury to his body and can prove fatal if unrelenting. Despite his great size and strength, he is still insufficient in a battle against the likes of Doomsday and his superhuman speed is insufficient compared to Speedsters like the Flash. Additionally, his relatively low intelligence and apparent lack of cognitive ability puts him at many disadvantages in a battle, though he can competently follow issued orders. Non's accelerated healing factor may be deficient to a degree as his muteness did not improve upon entering the empowering and rejuvenating environment of a yellow sun.
Non initially appeared in the first two Superman films, Superman: The Movie and Superman II.
At the beginning of Superman, Non is one of the three Kryptonian criminals, along with General Zod and Ursa, on trial for their attempted coup against the Kryptonian government. With Jor-El as their prosecutor, the three are found guilty and sentenced to be imprisoned in the Phantom Zone. They are cast into the Phantom Zone portal shortly before the planet Krypton is destroyed. Non, lacking the ability to speak, communicates only through occasional whines and moans as well as his penchant for wanton violence. Non's name is mentioned twice during the film Superman II, once in the beginning by the unseen prosecutor during the trial recap and once by Ursa ("he's caged Non"); Jor-El's only reference to him is to proclaim that he is "a mindless aberration, whose only means of expression are wanton violence and destruction".
Lex Luthor, who has managed to escape from jail (with Eve Teschmacher's assistance), has tracked down the Fortress, prior to Superman and Lois' arrival, using an alpha wave detector, and learns from the crystals of Superman's connection to Jor-El and of General Zod. He traces Zod to Washington D.C., and offers to lead Zod to Jor-El's son in exchange for control of Australia. Accepting his offer, the three Kryptonians are directed by Luthor to the offices of the Daily Planet where they abduct Lois. Superman arrives, after having found the misplaced crystal and reversing the transformation process, and attempts to fight the three. Zod realizes Superman cares for the innocent humans and takes advantage of this weakness to force Superman into submission. In order to protect Metropolis, Superman flies off towards his Fortress, with Zod, Ursa, and Non giving chase and carrying Lois and Luthor with them.
At the Fortress, Superman attempts to lay one last trap to stop Zod but fails. As Zod holds Superman in submission, Luthor reveals the ability of the Fortress to revert Superman into a human, a punishment that Zod sets forth. When Superman steps into the transformation chamber, the rest of the Fortress is bathed in red light. The three villains realize too late that Superman, knowing of Luthor's treachery, altered the transformation process to expose everyone outside the chamber to the red light, thus canceling Zod, Ursa, and Non's Kryptonian powers. With Lois' help, Superman is able to send the criminals into the bottomless depths of the Fortress. In deleted scenes, it is revealed that human, presumably Canadian, authorities arrest the now powerless Kryptonians.
The re-edited version of the film called Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut revealed that Superman went back in time a few days where he made sure that General Zod, Ursa, and Non remained in the Phantom Zone.