The Chronological Superman 1963:
One of the most grim Superman stories, written by Edmond Hamilton (co-creator of the original Starman), takes place in Action Comics vol.1 No.300. Trapped in the distant future by the Superman Revenge Squad, Superman is left powerless by Earth’s bloated, aged, now-red sun. His one hope for salvation lies in the Fortress of Solitude, accessible only by a veritable death march across a dried-up ocean bed populated by strange and deadly creatures.
The story goes a long way towards establishing – as do many stories in 1963 – Superman’s resourcefulness and toughness, qualities left uncelebrated as long as he possesses his tremendous powers. This must have been an engaging read for fans who had become accustomed to Superman juggling suns for amusement.
Famously, Superman Under The Red Sun contains a massive continuity error which was repaired in later reprintings: Finding his Fortress abandoned and the Bottle City of Kandor – whose science he hoped to use to return to the modern day – presumably relocated and enlarged, he uses Red Kryptonite to shrink himself sufficiently to use a left-behind Kandorian rocketship to break the time barrier. As many readers pointed out, Kryptonite only affects super-powered Kryptonians, and Superman was powerless under the red sun of Earth’s distant future…