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Bear with me, I don't know ANYTHING about superman. I just watched Man of Steel out of curiosity. I have the feeling that this may have been addressed in the movie, but I can't remember.

Man of Steel spoilers

Krypton is collapsing because they harvested its core. When Jor-El speaks with the Council guys, they seemed to be oblivious of what to do next. Jor-El then says something along the lines of

Do what our ancestors did, look at the stars!

That seemed odd to me. Jor-El's suggestion is pretty obvious, unless Kryptonians didn't own other planets or major colonies at all.

Additionally, when Kal-El's ship triggers a distress signal, Zod seems to be the only one to respond, further suggesting that there really are no other major Kryptonian communities out there.

Didn't Kryptonians own other planets/cities/colonies other than Krypton?

I remember they did send lots of exploration ships before. But I'm not sure what happened to them (other than the one buried in Earth).

  • MILD SPOILER WARNING Strictly from the movie, I think that point is left open-ended (i.e., unanswered). You may also have noticed that the 18,000 year old ship found in what I'm guessing is a glacier had four pods, 3 with bones in them and one without any. Going back to Kryptonians, I don't see why there could not have been Kryptonians somewhere out there that were even more distant than Zod was when he picked up the distress call. – FoxMan2099 Jun 21 '13 at 19:58
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    They had bad credit. After renting a condominium in the Zeta Reticuli system for 3 million years, there was a falling out with the landlord and she claimed they had caused alot of damage to the carpet in the living room, yadda yadda yadda. Long story short, they don't own or rent anything that requires a lease or credit check at this point. There is still the potential for Kryptonians to be out there crashing on buddies' couches, however. – John O Jun 21 '13 at 20:38
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Zod mentions to Kal-El that he went to many other colonies and outposts of Krypton but they had all withered and died without support from the home planet.

The implication is that there might be a few surviving colonies out there. Which leaves the door open for Supergirl to show up later in sequels.

  • How come all major colonies withered out without support from the home planet? You know, the point of a large colony is to survive without much external support. – Voldemort Jun 27 '13 at 0:24
  • Oh that they don't say. But Zod specifically said that because Krypton stopped supporting them, the colonies he visited perished. – Michael Brown Jun 27 '13 at 14:05
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In the film, there is no evidence of a surviving colony. This does not preclude one, however, as the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

It is worth noting, however, that the ship found in the movie appears perfectly capable of producing more Kryptonians - albeit a limited subset - once keyed on.

Likewise, they only searched for a few decades. We can presume at least a week per system of looking; we can further presume at least a week travel time per system, tho' probably more. Given those two presumtions, and 30 years of searching, that's about 750 systems maximum; given a 1 year travel radius for colonies, there could be some 65,000 systems that got contacted. It's a safe bet that Zod did not search the entire colonial sphere of Krypton's exploration efforts - only the ones he felt most likely to have something he could use or that were close in.

It's fairly clear that the known-to-Zod colonies of Krypton do not have success; it's also clear that Terraforming technology is well developed, and that Zod thinks he can succeed on earth, even tho the prior expedition failed. We do not know why the others failed, but we do know that Zod lacks good judgement.

Jor El's plea to look to the stars is interesting, especially since he presumably knows that the major colonies have failed. If they hadn't, Kryptonians would not be in the predicament they are in. So, any colonies would logically be either (1) isolationists or separatists, (2) technologically regressed, or (3) extradimensional.

In the comics, as far as I know, all the other survivors are all extradimensional colony denizens. We see in the film that the removal of the world engine ship by use of the phantom drive winks it out into another dimensional space; if it didn't, the singularity would have continued to grow and destroyed the Earth.

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