The Sun Eater is an artificial life form constructed by the Controllers as one of their weapons to control evil in the universe. If a world became too evil, a Controller could unleash the Sun Eater and it would literally eat the world in question along with its sun.
The Sun Eater was created by Jim Shooter and Curt Swan and first appeared in Adventure Comics #352.
In the 30th Century
A mature Sun Eater was directed to move towards the Earth by a renegade Controller. Destroying a number of stars along the way, it was noticed first by astronomers who alerted the Legion of Super Heroes to the looming crisis. In order to assist them in this task, the Legion enrolled the help of the Fatal Five - 5 of the universe's most dangerous and most powerful evil doer's. The only way to destroy the Sun-Eater is to detonate an "Anti-Energy Bomb"(Which is made of Absorbium) inside the Sun-Eater's core.Because of his invulnerability,Superboy was originally given the task to detonate the bomb inside the Sun-Eater's core.However,after Superboy was weakened by the red solar radiation that emitted from the Sun-Eater, Ferro Lad took the bomb away from Superboy, after turning himself into a strong, living metal before he dives into the Sun-Eater's core.Although he manages to destroy the Sun-Eater with the bomb, he didn't survive the explosion. The Legion subsequently destroyed a planet in a limbo dimension on which Sun Eaters and other weapons of great destructive power were being constructed by the controllers.
In the 20th Century
A Sun-Eater made it's way into Earth's Solar System and consumed the sun several years ago. Earth Heroes tried to alter the Sun-Eater's initial trajectory by funneling it through an oversize Boom Tube, but this plan failed. They even tried to make a secondary sun as a bait to lure the Sun-Eater off,but this plan had failed,too. The Sun-Eater still manages to consume the Sun despite the Earth heroes hard effort. Parallax flew to the sun and used all of it's energy at disposal to absorb the Sun-Eater's energy. This causes the destruction of the Sun-Eater, but Parallax also died as well. After Parallax died, he reignited the sun by releasing the energy it has absorb from the Sun-Eater.
Major Story Arcs
In the 20th Century
The evil being Mongul killed a Controller and stole a Sun Eater to use against the Earth and Superman. Along with some members of the Legion of Super Heroes, the Man of Steel overcame Mongul while Wildfire destroyed the Sun-Eater by exploding the Anti-Energy body inside the Sun-Eater's core. Wildfire manages to re-form himself after that.
A Junior Sun-Eater
The Outsiders & Teen Titans discovered a planet called Minosyss, which hosted a Sun-Eater factory hidden deep inside. One of its Sun-Eaters was used to kill Hyperion and Thia, two of the Titans of Myth. At the end of the Infinite Crisis, a junior red Sun-Eater was provided by Donna Troy, to be used by the Green Lantern Corps to imprison Superboy-Prime. Later on, Lobo, Starfire, Adam Strange, and a member of the Green Lantern Corps named Ekron defeated Lady Styx by pushing her into a group of Sun-Eaters. Animal Man was later able to tap the powers of the Sun Eaters, acquiring "migration maps", the ability to survive in space, and other traits. During a battle with the Justice League, Starbreaker claimed that Sun-Eaters were the larval form of his species
Powers and Abilities
Sun-Eater is a large cloud-like weapon that can surround and devour a sun, consuming all its energies and leaving behind a black, cold husk incapable of supporting life on its planets. After consuming a star it grows larger and becomes more powerful.
The Sun-Eater is invulnerable to all kinds of physical, energy, and psychological attack. It's only weak spot is it's core, the life force that directs the mass of energy. Detonating an absorbation bomb at it's core will scatter its energies then absorb them in the devastating blast.
All-Star of Superman
A baby Sun Eater was part of the intergalactic zoo in Superman's Fortress of Solitude. It was fed with miniature suns, created by Superman with a cosmic anvil from New Olympus. The infant creature was eventually released into the wild by Superman, but came to his aid when he was fighting Solaris only to be killed by the evil star.
Superman & Legion of Super-Heroes
Sun-Eater appeared in the the Season 2 of episode "Sundown", a Sun Eater is released from a weapon holdings platform by a renegade Controller. Brainiac 5 explains the Sun Eaters were created during an interstellar war called the "Great Crisis". Created to scare the two sides into ending the conflict, the weapon was only used twice, but then proved impossible to destroy or dismantle. The Legion teams with the Fatal Five to create a weapon that can destroy it. When the weapon fails to detonate due to a faulty connection, Ferro Lad sacrifices himself to act as a conductor.
All-Star of Superman
A baby form of a Sun-Eater was featured in the All-Star Superman movie. In the movie Superman keeps it as a pet in his Fortress of Solitude. He told Lois that he found it wondering space and that it would have starved. The creature is fed with small suns by Kal-El which he makes using his tools. However, the creature dies at the hands of Solaris, it attempts to save Superman from the creature by absorbing it's energy but Solaris projected too much power for it to handle and it simply exploded of him. After this, Superman claimed to stop feeling mercy for Solaris and killed him after he fell to Earth.