Cha-Mel

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Cha-Mel

A Kryptonian juvenile delinquent, petty thief, and Phantom Zone exile who briefly encounters Superboy, Krypto, and Jonathan and Martha Kent in a 1970 chronicle. Due to the effects of a chemical formula he develops and sprays on his skin and clothing, Cha-Mel gains mental control over the atoms of his body and clothing, enabling him to rearrange them at will and assume the appearance of virtually any person, whether male or female. Dubbed by Kryptonian authorities the "Lad of a Thousand Disguises", Cha-Mel is sentenced to exile in the Phantom Zone for committing a series of petty thefts and robberies that culminate in the attempted robbery of the home of Jor-El and Lara. During this attempted robbery, he makes the fatal mistake of disguising himself as Jor-El, but is caught in the act of looting the house by the scientist himself who had returned home before Cha-Mel could leave.

Cha-Mel first comes to the attention of the Boy of Steel when he attempts to ascertain whether any of the Phantom Zone exiles were behind the appearance of a dwarf star, or neutron star, within orbit around Earth, disrupting the planet's magnetic field and shifting the magnetic poles, causing the Aurora Borealis (or Northern Lights) to appear in the west and the Aurora Australis (or Southern Lights) to appear in the east. Upon activating the Phantom Zone monitor scanner in his laboratory workshop in the Kent basement, Superboy is shocked to see an image of what appears to be himself held inside the zone by inmates Jax-Ur, Professor Vakox, and Gra-Mo. The trio of prisoners claim to have used the momentary shifting of the Aurora Borealis to reach out and steal the hero's "...ethereal, immortal inner-self and snatch it back into our world...you are now a body without a soul!" (SB No. 162, Jan 1970: "The Super-Phantom of Smallville!")

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