From 1978: the first issue of SUPERMAN POCKETBOOK, a UK DC reprint title from London Editions/ Egmont.
Unlike the traditional British Pocket Libraries, this (and its BATMAN POCKETBOOK companion) was published with colour interiors. The upgraded production standards were made possible because London Editions (who eventually had a long - albeit intermittent - association with DC) were part of a bigger European outfit, and the digests appeared in other European markets with the black plates swapped out in favour of the local language during a single print run.
The sudden pan-European interest in the character was, of course, down to that year's SUPERMAN live-action movie.
The UK-only monthly THE SUPERHEROES followed, to limited success despite boasting attractive new covers and some vintage (albeit possibly dated) reprints from the DC vaults.
Once that title faltered, London Editions turned their attentions to other licensed fare scoring hits with the likes of MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE and MY LITTLE PONY and less success with the likes of THE CENTURIONS and BATTLE BEASTS.
But, towards the end of the decade, they rediscovered their DC mojo with a slate of new reprint titles (now in colour) beginning with - as you might expect - SUPERMAN. This expansion may have been prompted by the rising profile of DC characters (Superman celebrated his 50th with some hoopla, including a RADIO TIMES cover, in 1988), the post-CRISIS reboot of many of DC's top tier characters (making them more accessable to a wider audience), the impending BATMAN movie and MARVEL UK's retreat from the superhero market.
The new line, anchored by SUPERMAN and BATMAN but also including (at various times) HEROES, DC ACTION, ZONES and SHOCKWAVE, proved to be only a limited success and titles seemed to come and go (departing with little warning or fanfare) on a regular basis.
Robert Maxwell, now owner of the former IPC Youth Group rebadged Fleetway, managed to annoy Egmont's European bosses by snatching the Disney license. His ownership of MIRROR GROUP newspapers being a decisive factor in commiting to expose Disney's wares to the largest UK readership possible. Egmont's response was to buy into Fleetway, an offer that Maxwell (no doubt very aware of the financial mess buried at the heart of his media empire) found hard to resist. After his death, and the swift collapse of his crooked empire, Egmont bought the rest of Fleetway for a knockdown price.