Follow TV Tropes

Following

History ComicBook / LexLuthor

Go To


Added DiffLines:

** Reaches it's zenith during the ''Brightest Day'' storyline. [[spoiler:Lex Luthor gains near omnipotence and is given the opportunity to become the greatest hero in the ''universe'', even greater that Superman. Passively, his power sooths the anger and hatred of everyone, causing even the ''red lanterns'' to be at peace. He could turn the universe into a literal paradise. The only caveat to this is that the being that gave him these powers requires that he not harm Superman in any way. And that is simply a bridge too far for Lex, who was already furious from the revelation that Superman and Clark Kent were in fact the same person all along. He attempts to attack Superman and loses everything.]]


[[quoteright:350:https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1297543-actioncomics_luthor177cc3b_2068.jpg]]

to:

[[quoteright:350:https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1297543-actioncomics_luthor177cc3b_2068.jpg]]org/pmwiki/pub/images/lex_890.png]]



to:

** ''Film/ZackSnydersJusticeLeague''


* AdaptationalWimp: For some reason, none of his live-action film adaptations give him credit as a MadScientist whose inventions are deadly. Gene Hackman and Kevin Spacey's Luthor has him as a "criminal mastermind" who hijacks nuclear weapons, partners with Kryptonian villains or use Superman's fortress against his foe. Jesse Eisenberg's is a very convoluted mastermind even more petty than the usual interpretation lacking lex' magnificent bastard traits and his central plan is [[HereWeGoAgain using Kryptonian machinery]] against Superman [[spoiler:and the finale implies that he's a Darkseid cultist and a herald]]. None of them have Luthor actually inventing anything spectacular, deadly and fiendish or portray him as a human being whose inventions and scientific acumen puts him, alone among humans, on Brainiac-level playing field.

to:

* AdaptationalWimp: For some reason, none of his live-action film adaptations give him credit as a MadScientist whose inventions are deadly. Gene Hackman and Kevin Spacey's Luthor has him as a "criminal mastermind" who hijacks nuclear weapons, partners with Kryptonian villains or use Superman's fortress against his foe. Jesse Eisenberg's is a very convoluted mastermind even more petty than the usual interpretation lacking lex' Lex's magnificent bastard traits and his central plan is [[HereWeGoAgain using Kryptonian machinery]] against Superman [[spoiler:and the finale implies that he's a Darkseid cultist and a herald]]. None of them have Luthor actually inventing anything spectacular, deadly and fiendish or portray him as a human being whose inventions and scientific acumen puts him, alone among humans, on Brainiac-level playing field.


* AntiHero / AntiVillain: A NominalHero in those stories where he serves as the protagonist, sympathetic mostly due to the nature of the people he is up against.

to:

* AntiHero / AntiVillain: AntiHero: A NominalHero in those stories where he serves as the protagonist, sympathetic mostly due to the nature of the people he is up against.


* DirtyOldMan: In the Post-Crisis era, very much so, especially seen commonly surrounded by attractive young ladies in his company building to do his bidding. When a fifteen-year-old Lois Lane breaks into Lexcorp to get some dirt on him, Luthor has her strip searched, personally spanked, and makes a point of keeping the security footage of the strip search for himself.

to:

* DirtyOldMan: In the Post-Crisis era, very much so, especially seen commonly surrounded by attractive young ladies in his company building to do his bidding. When a fifteen-year-old Lois Lane breaks into Lexcorp to get some dirt on him, Luthor has her strip searched, personally spanked, and makes a point of keeping the security footage of the strip search for himself.



* EvilIsPetty: Lex's entire supervillain career is based around a need to be better than others. ''Especially'' Superman.

to:

* EvilIsPetty: Lex's entire supervillain career is based around a need to be better than others. ''Especially'' Superman.



* HijackedByGanon: Towards the end of ''ComicBook/BatmanNoMansLand'', he was revealed (read: {{Retcon}}ned) to be TheChessmaster behind the events of the entire StoryArc and then, at the last minute, was himself hijacked by ComicBook/TheJoker.

to:

* HijackedByGanon: Towards the end of ''ComicBook/BatmanNoMansLand'', he was revealed (read: {{Retcon}}ned) to be TheChessmaster behind the events of the entire StoryArc and then, at the last minute, was himself hijacked by ComicBook/TheJoker.



* PlotSensitiveSnoopingSkills: Luthor interacts with Superman face-to-face all the time, and in a good number of continuities is also childhood friends with Clark Kent (and at the very least sees him often through Lois), and he's among the most intelligent men in the entire world. Somehow in spite of these three facts he never, ever figures out Clark Kent and Superman are the same person. Various explanations for this have cropped up over the decades, but the fact remains that Luthor only figured out Clark's true identity when it was spelt out for him via looking through Superman's memories. Even then it took him a minute.
* PoliticallyIncorrectVillain: Very much so in his early Comicbook/PostCrisis appearances, in which he takes special pleasure in belittling women or threatening them into sleeping with him, not to mention taunting Maggie Sawyer regarding her sexuality.

to:

* PlotSensitiveSnoopingSkills: Luthor interacts with Superman face-to-face all the time, and in a good number of continuities is also childhood friends with Clark Kent (and at the very least sees him often through Lois), and he's among the most intelligent men in the entire world. Somehow in spite of these three facts he never, ever figures out Clark Kent and Superman are the same person. Various explanations for this have cropped up over the decades, but the fact remains that Luthor only figured out Clark's true identity when it was spelt out for him via looking through Superman's memories. Even then it took him a minute.
* PoliticallyIncorrectVillain: Very much so in In his early Comicbook/PostCrisis appearances, in which he takes special pleasure in belittling women or threatening them into sleeping with him, not to mention and taunting Maggie Sawyer regarding her sexuality.



* TeensAreMonsters: Had a violent streak even as an adolescent. In ''Lex Luthor: The Unauthorized Biography'', he was said to be cruel in his youth, especially towards girls, and even killed his parents to cash on a life insurance policy he put on them.

to:

* TeensAreMonsters: Had a violent streak even as an adolescent. In ''Lex Luthor: The Unauthorized Biography'', he was said to be cruel in his youth, especially towards girls, and even killed his parents to cash on a life insurance policy he put on them.



* VillainHasAPoint: He certainly wasn't wrong about what would happen if a whole army of Kryptonians landed on Earth during ''ComicBook/NewKrypton''. Even without Lane and Luthor's interference, the Kandorians (or at least their leadership) quickly showed themselves to be arrogant supremacists who flouted human laws and felt themselves to be immune to any form of corrective behaviour. Luthor finds the entire affair extremely gratifying.

to:

* VillainHasAPoint: He certainly wasn't wrong about what would happen if a whole army of Kryptonians landed on Earth during ''ComicBook/NewKrypton''. Even without Lane and Luthor's interference, the Kandorians (or at least their leadership) quickly showed themselves to be arrogant supremacists who flouted human laws and felt themselves to be immune to any form of corrective behaviour. Luthor finds the entire affair extremely gratifying.


Alexander Joseph "Lex" Luthor is the {{archenemy}} of Franchise/{{Superman}}, and one of the oldest villains in comic book history, making his debut in ''Action Comics'' #23 in April of 1940. Created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, the same team who created Superman himself, Luthor was an instant success, and ensured himself a permanent place in the Last Son of Krypton's RoguesGallery. Since then he's gone onto be a major player in the DC Universe, serving as one of its most iconic villains, alongside the likes of [[ComicBook/TheJoker the Joker]].

to:

Alexander Joseph "Lex" Luthor is the {{archenemy}} of Franchise/{{Superman}}, and one of the oldest villains in comic book history, making his debut in ''Action Comics'' #23 in April of 1940. Created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Creator/JerrySiegelAndJoeShuster, the same team who created Superman himself, Luthor was an instant success, and ensured himself a permanent place in the Last Son of Krypton's RoguesGallery. Since then he's gone onto be a major player in the DC Universe, serving as one of its most iconic villains, alongside the likes of [[ComicBook/TheJoker the Joker]].


* AffablyEvil: Luthor tries to present this way, and DependingOnTheWriter, may actually be fairly reasonable when he's not dealing with Superman. One thing that is often noted is that Lex is actually quite sincere about how he treats his employees, and he has respect for blue-collar people who go beyond their means to get ahead (since he used to be one as well).



* BadBoss[=/=]BenevolentBoss: DependingOnTheWriter Luthor may be a tyrannical boss, or a master manager who takes careful care of his underlings' needs.

to:

* BadBoss[=/=]BenevolentBoss: DependingOnTheWriter Luthor may be a tyrannical boss, or a master manager who takes careful care of his underlings' needs. He has respect for blue-collar people who go beyond their means to get ahead (since he used to be one as well).



* TheExtremistWasRight: He certainly wasn't wrong about what would happen if a whole army of Kryptonians landed on Earth during ''ComicBook/NewKrypton''. Even without Lane and Luthor's interference, the Kandorians (or at least their leadership) quickly showed themselves to be arrogant supremacists who flouted human laws and felt themselves to be immune to any form of corrective behaviour. Luthor finds the entire affair extremely gratifying.



* FauxAffablyEvil: More often than not, Luthor's revealed to be this. It's worth noting that of all the supervillains out there, the one he gets along with the best is ''the Joker''.

to:

* FauxAffablyEvil: More often than not, Luthor's revealed to be this. He appears to charming and pleasant but he is a cruel, ruthless, manipulative narcissist and sociopath. It's worth noting that of all the supervillains out there, the one he gets along with the best is ''the Joker''.



* TheSociopath: Often referred to as such. Though he doesn't necessarily hit all the requirements for the psychiatric diagnosis in the Pre-Crisis version. However, Post-Crisis incarnations and those that followed tend to hit every requirement trait.

to:

* TheSociopath: Often referred to as such. Though he doesn't necessarily hit all fits most of the requirements for the psychiatric diagnosis in the Pre-Crisis version. However, Post-Crisis incarnations and those that followed tend to hit every requirement trait.


Added DiffLines:

* VillainHasAPoint: He certainly wasn't wrong about what would happen if a whole army of Kryptonians landed on Earth during ''ComicBook/NewKrypton''. Even without Lane and Luthor's interference, the Kandorians (or at least their leadership) quickly showed themselves to be arrogant supremacists who flouted human laws and felt themselves to be immune to any form of corrective behaviour. Luthor finds the entire affair extremely gratifying.


* {{TRumplica}}: As noted earlier, one of the inspirations to depicted him as a businessman was Donald Trump. Amusingly the arc that would depict Luthor as President of the United States came 16 years about the real Trump's own victory.

to:

* {{TRumplica}}: {{Trumplica}}: As noted earlier, one of the inspirations to depicted depict him as a businessman was Donald Trump. Amusingly Amusingly, the arc that would depict Luthor as President of the United States came 16 years about the real Trump's own victory.

Added DiffLines:

* {{TRumplica}}: As noted earlier, one of the inspirations to depicted him as a businessman was Donald Trump. Amusingly the arc that would depict Luthor as President of the United States came 16 years about the real Trump's own victory.


** A notable example was when during the "Rock of Ages" storyline in ''ComicBook/GrantMorrisonsJLA'' featuring Luthor's first Injustice Gang taking on the Justice League, Luthor bashes The Joker with the Worlogog to express his disgust at Joker tampering with the bodies of child victims. Later in the same storyline, Lex tricks Joker - who is currently holding the Worlogog - into undoing all the murders the Injustice Gang had caused. Though this resulted in there being nothing the Justice League could charge Luthor and the rest of the criminals with, Superman still said he believed it was because some part of Lex drew the line at killing innocent children and that it wasn't just to save his own skin.

to:

** A notable example was when during the "Rock of Ages" storyline in ''ComicBook/GrantMorrisonsJLA'' featuring Luthor's first Injustice Gang taking on the Justice League, Luthor bashes The Joker with the Worlogog to express his disgust at Joker tampering with the bodies of child victims. Later in the same storyline, Lex tricks Joker - who is currently holding the Worlogog and having a "MyGodWhatHaveIDone" moment induced by the ComicBook/MartianManhunter's telepathy - into undoing all the murders the Injustice Gang had caused. Though this resulted in there being nothing the Justice League could charge Luthor and the rest of the criminals with, Superman still said he believed it was because some part of Lex drew the line at killing innocent children and that it wasn't just to save his own skin.


* BigBadEnsemble: With Brainiac and Zod for ''New Krypton''. Ultimately Luthor becomes the last one standing.

Added DiffLines:

* BigBadEnsemble: With Brainiac and Zod for ''New Krypton''. Ultimately Luthor becomes the last one standing.


Luthor has had various hats over the years. He was originally portrayed as a red-headed [[WarForFunAndProfit war profiteer]] who aimed to TakeOverTheWorld by playing various political factions against each other. He was then reimagined as a bald, egomaniacal MadScientist after an illustrator confused him with the Ultra-Humanite. This conception [[ThrowItIn of the character stuck]], and for the remainder of UsefulNotes/{{the Silver Age|OfComicBooks}} and UsefulNotes/{{the Bronze Age|OfComicBooks}} of comics, Luthor was written as a CardCarryingVillain who used his technological prowess to match Superman's physical might, regularly allying with other villains, like ComicBook/{{Brainiac}}, Bizarro, and the Joker in order to vex the Man of Steel and his allies. One thing that did change about Luthor was that as time went by, he became progressively younger and more physically active. The [[FatBastard paunchy man]] in his fifties was replaced by an [[BadassNormal exceptionally fit man]] in his forties, and was then retconned again into being only a few years older than Superman ''and'' possessed of a [[PoweredArmour warsuit]] that allowed him to fight the Kryptonian hand-to-hand. He also gained his own supporting cast, including his sister and MoralityPet, Lena, and the planet of Lexor, which hailed him as a hero after he saved it from destruction, and a number of alternate universe doppelgangers, including Alexei Luthor of Earth-2 (based on his original, GoldenAge appearance) and the heroic Alexander Luthor Sr. of Earth-3. This version of Luthor, along with the rest of the existing Franchise/DCUniverse, was erased from continuity following the ''ComicBook/CrisisOnInfiniteEarths''.

to:

Luthor has had various hats over the years. He was originally portrayed as a red-headed [[WarForFunAndProfit war profiteer]] who aimed to TakeOverTheWorld by playing various political factions against each other. He was then reimagined as a bald, egomaniacal MadScientist after an illustrator confused him with the Ultra-Humanite. This conception [[ThrowItIn of the character stuck]], and for the remainder of UsefulNotes/{{the Silver Age|OfComicBooks}} and UsefulNotes/{{the Bronze Age|OfComicBooks}} of comics, Luthor was written as a CardCarryingVillain who used his technological prowess to match Superman's physical might, regularly allying with other villains, like ComicBook/{{Brainiac}}, Bizarro, SelfDemonstrating/{{Bizarro}}, and the Joker ComicBook/{{The Joker}} in order to vex the Man of Steel and his allies. One thing that did change about Luthor was that as time went by, he became progressively younger and more physically active. The [[FatBastard paunchy man]] in his fifties was replaced by an [[BadassNormal exceptionally fit man]] in his forties, and was then retconned again into being only a few years older than Superman ''and'' possessed of a [[PoweredArmour warsuit]] that allowed him to fight the Kryptonian hand-to-hand. He also gained his own supporting cast, including his sister and MoralityPet, Lena, and the planet of Lexor, which hailed him as a hero after he saved it from destruction, and a number of alternate universe doppelgangers, including Alexei Luthor of Earth-2 (based on his original, GoldenAge appearance) and the heroic Alexander Luthor Sr. of Earth-3. This version of Luthor, along with the rest of the existing Franchise/DCUniverse, was erased from continuity following the ''ComicBook/CrisisOnInfiniteEarths''.


* BattleButler: His Amazonian bodyguards Mercy and Hope.

to:

* BattleButler: His (possibly literally) Amazonian bodyguards Mercy and Hope.


Added DiffLines:

* BodyguardBabes: Pre-New 52 Luthor had Mercy Graves (who is a CanonImmigrant from ''WesternAnimation/SupermanTheAnimatedSeries'') and Hope Taya, two towering super-strong women who were implied to be Amazons.


Added DiffLines:

** Lex Luthor's refusal to believe any claims that Clark Kent is Superman is based on the logic that if ''Luthor'' had powers like that, he would ''never'' hide himself away as an average person. Luthor's thinking seems to go, "I am a genius. Superman is a genius. Therefore, Superman must think like I do!"

Showing 15 edit(s) of 315

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report