Action Comics #13 “The Ghost in the Fortress of Solitude”, writer: Grant Morrison, artist: Travel Foreman. The first Kryptonian sentenced to the Phantom Zone is Xa-Du who first appeared in Morrison’s Action Comics #5. He finds a life without sensation is maddening and while able to witness events happening in the real world. Superman hears something in the Fortress of Solitude which is a crystal half-dome that looks like a kitten’s ball of thread. He sees the ghostly form of Xa-Du and checks on the Phantom Zone when Xa-Du in physical form with an ecto-suit turns on the Phantom Zone projector and sends Superman into the zone. The freed Phantom King (though he is never called that name) walks through the fortress and sees the calls for help from around the world at the monitoring station.
Superman is blind in the Phantom Zone until he is able to take glasses off of a criminal. A nice reversal of the Clark Kent identity. Superman whistles for Krypto first seen in Action Comics #3. Krypto brings along an earthly spirit that turns out to be the Phantom Stranger. The Phantom Superman pulls off Xa-Du’s ecto-suit and uses the Phantom Zone Projector to escape leaving Krypto behind. Then, Superman using the ecto-suit is able to pull his dog to Earth. A back-up story, “A Boy and His Dog”, by Sholly Fisch and Brad Walker shows Krypto faithfully following the infant Kal-El. He then follows Kal-El to Earth and is there for all of the events and adventures of his life. This ends with the sleeping Superman with his phantom dog at his side.
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