Bar-El and Lilo are a married couple and the first astronauts from Krypton. Jor-El and Kal-El bear an unspecified relation to them, but they regard the former as an ineffectual dreamer. They drifted in space, lost for decades. In recent times, they tracked the warp signature of Superman's ship. However, they passed through a Kryptonite debris field in space, which caused the minerals in their bodies to slowly turn into toxic Kryptonite. They found Superman's Fortress of Solitude and made sweeping changes in a bid to celebrate life. They began to regard humans as inferior apes and considered clearing out Metropolis to build New Krypton. Upon meeting Superman, they realized he betrayed his heritage and went native. The duo fought Superman and even threw him into the Moon.
Bar-El and Lilo soon fell ill to their poisoned bodies; losing their powers and becoming crippled. Superman rushed them back to the Fortress but was unable to neutralize the threat. Moved by Superman's kindness, Bar-El thanked him and declared he was proud to call him kin. Superman then regretfully dematerialized them into the Phantom Zone until a cure could be found.