- "When you wanted to get married, I tried warning you. You may have fallen in love with Clark Kent, but you married Superman, and Superman doesn't get to have a normal life. No matter how much you want one for him, or yourself."
- —Sam Lane to his daughter, Lois[src]
General Samuel "Sam" Lane is a retired military general of the U.S. Army and the former director of the Department of Defense. He is also the son of an unnamed man and Natalie Lane, the brother of an unnamed woman, the ex-husband of an unnamed woman, the father of Lois Lane and Lucy Lane, and the grandfather of Jonathan Kent and Jordan Kent.
In the original multiverse, Sam had a complicated relationship with his daughters, and had a strong view on aliens. In 2015, he went to National City with the army to train Supergirl with Red Tornado, a robot that could defeat Kryptonians. The robot fought the heroine and then fled, leaving Sam infuriated. He later attended Lucy's dinner with James Olsen, until the robot attacked them, but they were saved by Supergirl. Later, Sam captured General Astra, but had to release her to retrieve "Hank Henshaw". During Myriad's activation, Sam briefly become the new D.E.O. leader, but rejoined the army when Supergirl defeated Non.
In the new multiverse, Sam is kinder, but was abandoned by his wife, which made him neglect raising his daughters, also preferring not to get involved in her conflicts. Lucy became a follower of Ally Allston and Lois became a reporter for the Daily Planet, later marrying Superman and having two children, Jonathan and Jordan. In 2021, Sam with the DOD helped Superman during the confront with a stranger, and the invasion of Tal-Rho and Leslie Larr. After Rho's defeat, Sam decided to retire from active duty to spend more time with his family, and was suceded by Mitch Anderson in the DOD. But his vacation didn't last long as he had to return to resolve his daughters and Jordan's conflicts.
Sam was born in the 1950s into a military family. When he was a child, his father used to bring Sam and his sister to the movies every Sunday. During one of these occasions, they saw The Day the Earth Stood Still, which strongly impressed and terrified Sam. The film would be one of the catalysts which convinced Sam that extraterrestrials were the biggest threat to both the country and the whole planet, since their technology and powers could wipe out the human race in a few moments.
Growing up, Sam followed the family tradition by joining the U.S. Army and climbing the hierarchy until he earned the rank of general. He fathered two daughters; Daily Planet's reporter Lois Lane and military lawyer Lucy Lane, who also served as a legal attaché on his staff. Over the years, Sam's relationship with Lois became estranged, due to his immorality and control issues over her life.
Due to Sam's strong anti-alien ideas, he viewed even Superman as a potential threat to America. Due to this, Sam had tried to establish a partnership with the D.E.O., which he considered inadequate to handle potential alien invaders.
Arriving in National City
General Sam Lane came to National City, as he wanted "Hank Henshaw" to transfer Supergirl to his unit. However, Hank could not, as she did not technically work for the D.E.O. Then, he demanded that Supergirl fight their field robot Red Tornado. Supergirl won the battle, breaking off the android's arm with her freezing breath, and causing damage in his system. As Red Tornado flew, Dr. Morrow said his robot activated the self emergency protocol, so General Lane fired Morrow because he did not cope with the task. The next day, the general had dinner with Lucy and James, to whom he told that James is not worthy of his daughter - that James surrounded himself with special people because he's not good enough himself. Later, General Lane, Lucy and James were attacked by Red Tornado, and Supergirl rescued them but is forced to allow the android to escape in order to diffuse a tornado it caused. Later, "Henshaw" suggested using alien technology that created the hologram of General Lane to draw out Red Tornado, and Supergirl destroyed it.
Acting director of the D.E.O.
When "Hank Henshaw" was captured by Astra and Non's army, General Lane returned to National City to temporarily perform his duties as director of the D.E.O.; he tortured Astra by injecting her with liquid Kryptonite to learn the location of their base, but she gave them a false position, which turned out to be a trap. Then Supergirl decided to make an exchange of prisoners; despite the fact that the general was against it, he was forced to retreat as Kara stood her ground. After his return, "Henshaw" coldly told General Lane that his presence at the D.E.O. was no longer required, and General Lane and his team left.
When National City was put under the influence of Myriad, Supergirl contacted General Lane and asked him not to let anyone enter the city as she didn't understand what was happening. Later he called her back saying that he had done his duty and asked her to fulfill hers.
Later, Lucy asked her father to release J'onn J'onzz (whose Martian identity had been previously revealed making him a fugitive), but the general refused to do so. However, he allowed J'onn to go with Supergirl to fight Non and Indigo. After their victory, General Lane told J'onn J'onzz that the President granted him a full pardon and re-instated him as the director of the D.E.O. He then took Non's apocalypse device, the Omegahedron, under military custody and later delivered it to Maxwell Lord.
Housing Daxamite technology
General Lane aided in the safekeeping of a Daxamite ship following their invasion. However, after it was hijacked by Robert DuBois, J'onn J'onzz called Lane and gave him a stern talking to, threatening to have his stars stripped from him.
During the Anti-Monitor Crisis, Sam Lane as well as everyone in the multiverse except for the seven Paragons, was killed in an antimatter wave by the Anti-Monitor on December 10, 2019, only to be restored a month later, after the Paragons and the Spectre created a new universe.
In the rewritten history of Earth-Prime, Sam knows that Clark Kent is Superman and instead of being against him, believes the world actually needs Superman. He attended his daughter, Lois Lane's wedding to Clark and through her, has two grandsons, Jonathan Kent and Jordan Kent.
After his wife left, Sam blamed himself for driving her away. For him was easier just to focus on work. There, he trusted himself. But at home, he felt out of his depth. Lois always felt that Sam's first priority was his job.
At some point, Sam has watched the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, which he erroneously calls "pirates in the island movies". He still likes the first movie better. Sam liked to tell Lucy and Lois that he set two state records in his senior year. At some point, Lucy and Lois snuck out with Sam's rum. Later, they came back to base only to find him waiting for they and he got pissed.
During Lucy's involvement with Ally Allston's cult, Sam preferred not to get involved between her and Lois and did not read Lois's article on the subject, because Lucy said it wasn't like that for her.
A new enemy
Sam Lane and the army went to a nuclear plant that was about to explode. When he arrived at the site, he asked a worker how long they had before the plant exploded, with her replying that it would only take a few minutes and that radiation would cover the entire Metropolis. Then, using his device, he called the Superman to resolve the situation, and it worked. When Superman landed, they realized that the same thing had already happened to another plant, with Sam saying that the cracks were intentional and that worried him.
He then asked if Lois was not complaining as Clark spent a lot of time away from home and said that he also wanted to take Jonathan fishing, and that maybe Clark could convince Jordan to come along. Clark said he was going to make an appointment with Lois and said goodbye to the General. When Martha Kent died, Sam attended her funeral. Sam later goes on to Kent farm and shows Clark a video that had the Kryptonian language and showed the Stranger who was in the nuclear power plants.
After learning that Lois, Clark and the children moved to Smallville, Sam comes to Kent farm just as Lois takes the twins with her to the town meeting. Sam berates Clark for revealing his secret identity to the children because he feels that it will take a toll on their mental health. The Stranger who had sabotaged the nuclear power plants appeared in the military facility that Sam was in and started attacking the soldiers, so Sam called Superman to stop him. Sam ordered everyone to leave the facility and the Stranger invaded, asking Sam to stop protecting Superman. Then he gives Sam an object with the symbol of the House of El and says that where he comes from, Sam doesn't trust Kal-El and knows what he's capable of. He asks for your help to stop him before Clark arrives and defeats him, which ends up being revealed as just armor. Sam then tells Clark what happened and shows the object. He says the Stranger was there after Kryptonite, making Clark angry. Sam says he had kryptonite so that no one could use it against Superman. In his office, Sam looks at the object and realizes that the word hell is in it.
Days later, Sam goes to the twins' football game and realizes that Jordan has powers. Annoyed, he has an argument with Lois and Clark. He tells Clark that Killgrave has escaped from prison and then tells the children not to catch his father while he is Superman. After arresting Killgrave, the children tell Lois and Clark what happened, making them angry and going to get some satisfaction from Sam. Later, Sam called Rosetti to find out about Project 7734.
A metahuman named Tag Harris attacked Jordan after the game, and Sam finds him on security cameras in Metropolis and warns Superman. When the DOD appears to try to arrest Tag, Superman tries to calm them down but is hit with Kryptonite ammunition. After Superman recovers and Tag is arrested, the hero questions Sam about using weapons against a child and kryptonite against him. Later, Sam goes to Kent Farm and warns the Kent family that Tag has been sent to a school for children with special powers.
Morgan Edge's rise
When John Henry Irons was apprehended by Superman, he was interrogated to find answers on his secretive background. General Lane then informed Superman that he'd use Lieutenant Jason Trask to torture Irons for information if he couldn't force him to talk. When Lane learned that Rosetti was accessing Project 7734, he tried to convince the returning Superman to let his men apprehend Rosetti. When John Irons was prepared to kill Superman, Lois and Sam come in and Lois making him give it up and he is arrested again. Later, Superman is recovering with Sam, who reveals to Clark that Project 7734 is for some Kryptonian threat. Clark reveals to him that he trust goes the two different ways, and gets some information about Rosetti.
When Jordan gets sick and can barely breathe, Clark, Lois and Sam conclude that Project 7734 is still affecting Superman and now is affecting Jordan second-hand. Clark takes Jordan to the Fortress of Solitude to save his life from the synthetic Kryptonite poisoning and Lois asks Sam to leave their lives for good. When Emily Phan and Jasper Townes attacked Kent Farm, Sam tried to stop them with Kryptonite gas and give Lois and Jon enough time to escape. When the individuals left, Kent Farm was closed and surrounded by soldiers from Lane to protect his family. He and Lois provisionally reconciled, with Sam apologizing for not being a good enough father for her.
Sam and the DOD used Sequoia as a temporary base of operation when they occupied Smallville in their quest to stop the plans of Morgan Edge. Superman and the DOD captured Dabney Donovan (Edge's scientist) so he could fix the Eradicator, but he said that the only one who would be able to do that would be its creator; Lara Lor-Van. After Lana Lang overhears a conversation between Sam Lane and Superman, she applied to be Lara's host until she fixed the device. When fixed, Superman told Sam he had a plan, he brought all the Subjekts to Smallville to use their heat vision to disable the object and it worked, during which Sam Lane made all the officers leave the DOD base.
After Superman was possessed by Zod, Sam asked A.R.G.U.S weapons that could disable his powers. At the Kent Farm, Sam and John Irons think Clark is gone and they need to kill him while there is still time, and Lois disagrees and thinks he'll be fine. When Lois leaves, Sam asks if John still has his gear. At the DOD base, John Diggle went in Lyla Michaels's place, and after talking to Lois, Diggle is furious that Sam deceived him and Lyla concerning what the tech was for and questions him. He's additionally not excited that Sam was holding onto somebody from one more Earth without unveiling it. Eventually, with the help of John Irons and Lois Lane, Superman returned to normal and managed to capture Tal-Rho, and imprisoned him in a cell that disables his powers. Sam later tells Clark and Lois that Leslie Larr is as yet in the breeze, however they're giving a valiant effort to discover her.
In his base, Sam says he needs to take the all the Kryptonite and sink them to the lower part of the sea. He guarantees Clark that he, Lois, and the kids will be protected, but Clark says they still need kryptonite in case something happens again. Later, Sam calls Lois to say he's stressed over Clark.
When the citizens of Smallville wondered what the DOD was still doing in the city and began to protest, Sam decides to make a statement, but Tal-Rho runs away with Leslie Larr (who Superman and John had arrested) and he had to leave, leaving the populace furious. Sam and his soldiers remained in Smallville in case he returned. Sam tried calling Jon and Jordan, telling them to come home, but they ignored the call. Sam tracked them to the Cushing house and drove them away. On the way Edge attacked the car, and caused it to crash. Sam was injured and nearly unconscious and gave Jonathan his Kryptonite gun, instructing him on how to shoot Edge. However, Edge was quick and dodged the bullet, kidnapping Jordan.
The Cushings show up to help Sam and Jon with their injuries. At night, the citizens protest the DOD and Sam tries to calm them down. Meanwhile, Tal-Rho has returned to Smallville and turned six of Sam's best soldiers into Kryptonian members of the Defense Council. Sam and his troops evacuate Smallville while Superman and John Irons fight Edge and the Council, and eventually they won.
Changing his priorities
After Morgan Edge's defeat, Sam attended the Cushing house party and admitted to John Irons that he had given enough to the world and decided it was time to retire from active duty to spend more time with his family. Later, Lieutenant General Mitch Anderson succeeded Lane in the DOD. Sam's vacation didn't last long as he had to return to resolve his daughters and Jordan's conflicts.
Eventually, Sam convinced Lucy to go to the Kent Farm and make amends with Lois. They were initially hostile, but Lucy was happy to be reunited with her nephews, and ended up staying all day. In the evening, they went to watch Jonathan's football game. Sam went out to get popcorn and ended up talking to Mayor George Dean. When he returned, Lucy had already left after arguing with Lois.
- "I wanted you to know that by your world's standards, I am a man of honor. And I take no pleasure in what comes next."
- —Sam Lane to Astra[src]
Sam has a strong view on aliens, deeply hating them simply because they are different, regardless whether or not they are a threat to the human race. He even dislikes anyone who associates themselves with aliens, like James Olsen, due to the latter being close friends with Superman. Though he does imply that watching The Day the Earth Stood Still left a haunting impression on him as a child. This fear could explain why he grew up so distrusting of extraterrestrial life.Sam is quite immoral, as he had Astra tortured with liquid Green Kryptonite to try and get the location of where her comrades were keeping "Hank Henshaw". Although he admits that he took no pleasure in it, showing a shred of decency.
In the new multiverse, Sam has much more respect for Superman. What's more, he is even aware of Clark's identity as Superman, meaning he has a better relationship with Clark and Lois. Lane is very open minded; even though his job was to protect America, he also understood Superman's job is to protect all humans, regardless of their country of origin. As such, he never pushed Superman to rescue an enemy vessel and deliver it to America to secure, something his successor, Anderson failed to understand. As a result, he had a great working relationship with Superman, having few, if any problems over the course of 20 years.
He is also very wise: when Sam found out Clark and Lois were going to be married, he warned them that the day would come where Clark would have to choose between his duties as Superman and his family. When that day came, Sam didn't hold it against Clark or Lois for choosing their family over Clark's duties, but did remind them of his warning, respected their wishes and left it at that.
Sam enjoys going fishing with his grandson Jonathan.
Sam was an absentee father who put his duties over his own family, which lead to his relationship being strained with Lois since her childhood. He was also somewhat controlling when he saw Jordan display above average physical abilities emphasized the Kent family needs to keep their head down to avoid drawing suspicions to Clark. He also tried to tell the boys not to be too burdensome on Clark since he is Superman, which led to more fallout between him and his family.After meeting with John Henry Irons, Sam began to think what would happen if Superman turned against the earth and he developed a project called 7734 (a name he got from Irons that when put upside down spells "hell") as a contingency in case such an event occurred. He did express regret that 7734 weapons ended up being used against Superman and acknowledged that he had lost his son-in-law's trust, and would have to work to regain it. After seeing Superman fight for humanity over his own kind and seeing how the kryponite affected Jordan, Sam decided to dismantle 7734; he would dispose of most of the kryponite but keep enough to keep Tal-Rho and Leslie Larr under lock and keep so there won't be enough to supply an army who would kill Clark.
- Expert hand to hand combatant: During Sam's time in the military, he was well trained in hand-to-hand combat.
- Expert marksman: During Sam's time in the military, he was trained in the use of firearms.
- ELT: Sam uses an object similar to a signal watch to call Superman when he wants help.
- Kryptonite gas: Sam used kryptonite gas to stop Emily Phan and a man when they invaded the Kent Farm.
Superman & Lois
Adventures of Supergirl
Superman & Lois
Behind the scenes
- In the DC comics, General Sam Lane is an antagonist to Superman, father of Lois Lane and Lucy Lane and husband of Ella Lane. He is a great military leader and believes that people with as much power as Superman prove an ongoing threat to humanity stemming from his natural distrust. A true patriot, he is willing to cross many lines and even go to his death in the defense of his country. This includes working alongside Lex Luthor on several occasions. There is irony in that his daughter is married to Clark Kent, secretly his greatest enemy. Although he appeared to die fighting Imperiex during Our Worlds at War, New Krypton showed that he had faked his own death. Later he committed suicide during the War of the Supermen, though he was later reintroduced following the New 52 reboot. He was also the leader of Project 7734. He debuted in Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane #13 (November, 1959).
- Originally he was introduced as a horse farmer from the town of Pittsdale, before later being reinvented as a U.S. army general.
|Other versions of Sam Lane|
|To see other versions of this character, click the Earth name below for that Earth's counterpart of Sam Lane.|
|Earth: Prime • Inverse World|
|Earth: 38 • TUD22|