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Superman No. 127. Art by Curt Swan and Stan Kaye.
Superman No. 138. Art by Curt Swan and Stan Kaye.

A colossal, super-powered ape who inadvertantly proved to be a menace to the citizens of Metropolis in general and Superman in particular.

Powers: By virtue of his vast size alone, Titano possesses tremendous strength and is easily capable of smashing through buildings, cars or any other obstacles that happen to be in his path (even though these actions are usually the result of his playful nature, not malicious intent). Additionally, Titano has the ability to project beams of intense Green Kryptonite radiation from his eyes (commonly referred to as either Kryptonite vision or K-vision), which are naturally deadly to Superman and other super-powered Kryptonians.

Biography: Titano was originally a normal-sized chimpanzee named Toto, and was widely considered to be one of the most intelligent apes on Earth. The gentle Toto was befriended by Lois Lane when the ace newspaper reporter aided the chimp after he was accidentally struck by a pie during a slapstick comedy act at a televised charity show. Scientists later launched Toto into space aboard an experimental orbiting satellite for a week, an event that, coincidentally, Lois was covering. While in space, the animal's capsule was bombarded by intense radiation emanating from the collision of two meteorites ... one containing traces of uranium, the other being purely composed of Green Kryptonite. Upon the capsule's return to Earth, Toto amazingly grew to a height of more than 40 feet and, recognizing Lois as the cinematic King Kong did Fay Wray, picked her up in his gigantic hand. It was at this point that Lois renamed the ape Titano. Though not malicious by nature, Titano's tremendous size and strength soon began causing a great deal of damage to Metropolis. When Superman attempted to stop the simian's escapade, the Man of Steel was knocked to the ground by Titano's incredible new power: Kryptonite vision. However, Lois then used Titano's tendency to imitate the actions of others to get the beast to wear a pair of giant spectacles that Superman had constructed and treated with a lead coating that blocked Titano's K-vision. The Action Ace then hurled the creature back through time at super-speed to Earth's Mesozoic Era where he would find contentment among beasts of comparable size (S No. 127/3, Feb 1959: "Titano the Super-Ape").

Ironically, it was Superman himself who was responsible for Titano's return trip to Metropolis a year later. While using an alien time-viewer that he had discovered on another world, the Metropolis Marvel happened to be observing Titano's activities in the past when the device accidentally brought the ape back to the present. As before, Titano sought out Lois Lane and captured her, this time placing the reporter in a cage that he kept around his neck, and Superman was unable to get near the beast because of his deadly Kryptonite vision. However, while observing Titano being attracted to large round objects such as a giant balloon and the huge Daily Planet globe, Superman began to realize that the creature was actually foraging for giant coconuts that served as his main food source while in prehistoric times. Retrieving a supply of the coconuts from the past, Superman managed to pacify Titano long enough for him to rescue Lois and return the simian to the days of the dinosaurs (S No. 138/1, Jul 1960: "Titano the Super-Ape"). Some time later, while journeying into the past in order to take accurate measurements of a prehistoric gigantosaur, Superman ran across Titano once again. Because he was weakened by exposure to the ape's K-vision, Superman experienced an unplanned encounter with a young Perry White and infamous mobster Al Capone when the Man of Might landed in the 1920s during his attempt to return to the present (S No. 142/2, Jan 1961: "Superman Meets Al Capone").

Titano once fell into conflict with Krypto when the Dog of Steel journeyed into the prehistoric past to confront the giant ape after discovering that a bone he buried was crushed during Titano's last appearance in the present. Krypto began to play tricks on Titano, antagonizing the simian and starting a feud between the two animals. However, Krypto then decided to make peace with the ape, even going so far as to offer him bananas as his way of extending the olive branch. This gesture was apparently well-received by Titano, for the gargantuan beast later helped save Krypto from capure by an alien spacecraft before the Super-Dog returned to the present (S No. 147/2, Aug 1961: "Krypto Battles Titano").

While still in the past, Titano was once observed by Bizarro during the Thing of Steel's quest to research famous monsters in Earth's history for a television program that he was planning to produce on the Bizarro World of Htrae. However, nobody on Htrae took Bizarro's stories of Titano seriously, choosing instead to believe that he was talking about King Kong (Adv No. 289/2, Oct 1961: "Bizarro's Amazing Buddies"). Bizarro would later go on to actually create a Bizarro-Titano as part of a ridiculous plan to dissuade Bizarro-Lois from pursuing a career as a wrestler. Just as the original Titano possesses Green Kryptonite vision, Bizarro-Titano had Blue K-vision (Adv No. 295/2, Apr 1962: "The Kookie Super-Ape").

Superman's pal Jimmy Olsen encountered Titano for the first time when a malfunctioning Superman Robot temporarily stranded him in a prehistoric valley that the ape was inhabiting (SPJO No. 59/1, Mar 1962: "Stranded in Evolution Valley"). When Titano reappeared in present-day Metropolis under unexplained circumstances, the ape once again reverted to his former habits, this time taking Lois' younger sister Lucy Lane captive while again keeping Superman at bay with his K-vision. Taking a special enlarging compound that enabled him to grow to gigantic proportions, Jimmy engaged the giant ape in battle and eventually managed to subdue him. An alien princess named Allura (who had originally come to Earth seeking Jimmy's hand in marriage) then took Titano with her to her planet of giants in the Ashtar star-system where the creature found peace (and a mate) among apes his own size (SPJO No. 77/1, Jun 1964: "The Colossus of Metropolis"). Some time later, Jimmy brought both Titano and the Flame Dragon back to Earth using a teleportation device devised by Professor Potter so they could battle each other for the filming of a new giant monster movie. However, the two incredibly powerful beasts ran wild during their combat, forcing Jimmy to send the gigantic creatures back where they came from (SPJO No. 84/1, Apr 1965: "Jimmy Olsen's Monster Movie").

Titano was briefly returned to Earth by Superman as a means of protecting his secret identity after exposure to an isotope of Red Kryptonite caused the Man of Tomorrow to grow to giant proportions and rampage through Metropolis in a reenactment of events found in the classic King Kong film. After ensuring that his secret was secure, Superman returned the giant ape to his home (S No. 226/1, May 1970: "When Superman Was King Kong").

When last seen, Titano had been teleported back to Earth by the Atomic Skull as a means of safeguarding a secret Kryptonite pipeline that was feeding tons of the radioactive element into a rocket that the criminal organization called Skull was planning to use against Superman. Inevitably, Titano and Superman met in battle during the Action Ace's attempt to thwart the Atomic Skull's plans. During the struggle, Superman noticed that the normally playful Titano was behaving like a raging engine of destruction. Using his X-ray vision, Superman discovered that the Atomic Skull had surgically implanted a sophisticated electronic device near the simian's brain, which acted as a receiver of electronic impulses trannsmitted directly from the Atomic Skull's own brain and was responsible for Titano's extremely violent behavior. Temporarily subduing Titano by wrapping the creature's head in lead piping that blocked his K-vision, the Metropolis Marvel then rendered the Atomic Skull unconscious, thereby breaking the villain's control over the ape and returning him to his usual docile nature. Superman then constructed a 100-foot tall marionnette of a television camaraman, which he used to lure Titano into an enormous cage. The Man of Tomorrow then returned Titano to the planet of giants in the Ashtar system, where the creature resumed his peaceful existence with his mate and his fellow giant apes. (S No. 324, Jun 1978: "Beware the Eyes That Paralyze").

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