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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by llozymandias View Post
    Luthor (in the Donner/Reeve movies) was a buffoon. Two things in Superman II proved that to me. One Lex returned to wearing a hairpiece after escaping prison. In real life, people (like Michael Milken, for instance) use hairpieces to hide the fact that they have receding hairlines. Or are bald. If you go to prison (or jail) any kind of hairpiece is confiscated. At this point your receding hairline (or baldness) is public knowledge. Thus you have no real reason to wear hairpieces, anymore. Then there is going unarmed to meet Zod & co.. Yes I know, he actually expected them to be his pals. he expected three evil aliens (with Superman's powers) to be nice to him. That is stupid in itself. He must have forgotten that at least once or twice Superman was a bit rough with him. Add the fact that Lex (at this point) knows about kryptonite. An intelligent Lex would have acquired some kryptonite. Or retrieved the chunk miss Tessmacher threw down the stormdrain. Only then would an intelligent Lex meet Zod & co..
    Well it's not real life it's a comic book movie so comparing real life ideas to what a comic book is just doesn't make sense. You are looking to much into a movie that was meant to be lighthearted set in a comic book world, especially a Superman comic book world where everything and anything could and should be possible.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lois View Post
    Was watching Superman the Movie last night and I just love Gene Hackman as Lex Luthor.
    He's such a fun super villain. *grins*
    Excellent. Hackman did a amazing job as Lex.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Overlord View Post
    Lex was a known criminal, seemingly with outstanding warrants for his arrest, how was he going to claim the land he purchased after he destroyed California? If he was planning on claiming the land under a false name, why was he planning on naming things in his new city after himself? It seems like Lex would have been found out as the owner of that land and arrested under one of the outstanding warrants for his arrest. Even if they couldn't prove that Lex caused the Earthquake (there may have been an eye witness who saw Lex at the scene of military conveys carrying the nuclear missiles that were tempered with, they know his female assistant was there.) It would have been very hard for Lex to have made a profit on this scheme. Heck, he likely would destroyed the world economy mistake, which might have rendered his assets still worthless, not many people could have afforded to buy Lex's condos after the entire economy crashes.

    And again, Lex's plan only worked because the US military was presented as being really stupid in that film. Lex's plans should succeed because of his brilliance, not because the authority are written down for him to succeed. One competent solider should have been able to stop Lex's plan dead in his tracks.

    Now I still have give props to Ricard Donner, Superman the movie was the first major super hero movie and it was a good film, he was working without a net, it delivered in many key areas. But for me, Lex was the weak link of the film, I don't find him menacing and I don't find him funny. I would rank Movie Lex pretty low in terms of Comic Book Movie villains, I would rank I lot of obscure villains adatped to film above him: Obadiah Stane, Sebastian Shaw, Whiplash, William Stryker, Deacon Frost. I rank him as being equal with Movie Dr. Doom, another popular villain with a less then successful screen adaption, I would rank him above the real bottom of the barrel villains: Movie Jigsaw, Nuclear Man, Blackheart, the villain from Catwoman, Mr. Freeze, etc, but that's not really high praise.

    This is just my opinion, if some people like Movie Lex, more power to them, I just don't think the comic relief of a movie like this should ever come from the villain, the villain should be played straight to be truly menacing. But this was the major super hero movie, so there was going to be a few pitfalls, its too bad Singer made his Lex a copy of the Donner Lex, I think by 2006 we should have gotten a more serious Lex.
    We'll just have to agree to disagree. A more serious Lex Luthor in the 76 movie would have clashed horribly with the tone of the movie. And I still don't see his plan as bad. Yes, it has flaws, but we don't know every step of his scheme. He likely had more that he had planned and would have executed had Superman not been there to stop him.
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  4. #64
    Astonishing Member The Kid's Avatar
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    Been watching Justice League cartoon again and the Lex in the DCAU is my all-time favorite portrayal of the character. Genius, rich, cruel businessmen. Brilliant voice acting by Brown
    DC, hurry up and make your own version of Marvel Unlimited!

  5. #65
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lexrules View Post
    Well it's not real life it's a comic book movie so comparing real life ideas to what a comic book is just doesn't make sense. You are looking to much into a movie that was meant to be lighthearted set in a comic book world, especially a Superman comic book world where everything and anything could and should be possible.
    Well, that isn't exactly accurate.

    The very tone, the singular idea around which Dick Donner built the first Chris Reeve Superman movie, was "verisimilitude", that is to say realism. It's one of the reasons the movie was much less like the comics than I would have preferred. The whole thing was meant to seem like it took place in the real world.

    And you know what, I wouldn't be surprised if any Luthor from any era of the comics got ahold of some Kryptonite before meeting with psychopathic criminals from another planet. It's just, you know, the smart thing to do. Luthor's foolishness in Superman II was more or less a plot device to keep him from solving the problem so Superman needs to rescue him.

    It's not because the movie was supposed to be like the comics, it really isn't, and that's kind of the problem.

    It's funny though, I really do like the Luthor from Lois and Clark, and he's got hair and a corporation, and a romantic entanglement with Lois Lane, and an act where he pretends to be a hero, and a secret desire to be Superman, and all that stuff I usually prefer him not to have, but they just do a really good job with him. Of course, I like the S:TAS/JLU one too, and he's got at least a good number of those things. Hrm.

    @The Overlord I've run into the character limit problem too. Listen: We don't seem to be changing each others minds. You think Luthor's a totally petty villain, I think Luthor's a tragic criminal who is only petty to Superman. Your idea of sympathy excludes being willing to write some stories off due to creative differences between writers at the time, mine does not. You think Post-Crisis Lex was a logical conclusion of Pre-Crisis Lex, I think he was the worst qualities of the character taken and magnified without regard for the good qualities. You are apparently an intelligent person, I certainly hope I am. We are clearly not going to convince each other of anything (except that I should definitely watch Gargoyles because Xanatos sounds fantastic), so I would like to respectfully call our debate to a close.

    I do have one final point however, a point of agreement with you: you said the best way to make Luthor sympathetic would be for him to realize he was being petty and try to give it up. I agree. I think it's inevitable for Luthor, eventually, to realize his mistake and realize that Superman was right all along, that he has to make friends with him if he's going to do any good in the world or have anything positive as a legacy. That's another thing Maggin mentioned (extremely briefly) in that interview I mentioned before. In stories like The Ghost of Superman-Future, Maggin would have the Long-Bearded Old Superman refer casually to his close friendship with the late Doctor Luthor. I don't think we ever really get to see that relationship grow organically just because the characters, by necessity of the medium, are stuck in a perpetual feud between the ages of twenty and forty. If we could see beyond the limits of their relative youth, I think Luthor would eventually reform and dedicate himself to helping people, the way you say he ought to.

    At least we can agree on not liking the Hackman Lex!

  6. #66
    Fantastic Member llozymandias's Avatar
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    There are other possible ways for Lex's war on Superman to end. One is he wins. Lex kills Superman. Or he captures him & puts him in a kind of stasis. Another way is Lex walks away from the feud. He decides to let go of his hatred for Superman. But he does not become a good guy. Since his hatred (of Superman) stems from the fact that Superman is always there to stand in his way, Lex finds another solution to the problem. First he successfully fakes his own death (or destruction). So Superman has no reason to search existence for him. Then he moves operations to somewhere/when, that Superman would never visit.
    John Martin, citizen & rightful ruler of the omniverse.

  7. #67
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Continuing down/up the Lineage of Live-Action Lex Luthors:

    Lex Luthor I: Lyle Talbot (ATOM MAN VS. SUPERMAN movie serial)
    Lex Luthor II: Gene Hackman (SUPERMAN: THE MOVIE, SUPERMAN II, SUPERMAN IV: THE QUEST FOR PEACE movies)
    Lex Luthor III: James Scott Wells (SUPERBOY tv show season 1 )


    Now, onto Lex Luthor IV: Sherman Howard (SUPERBOY tv show seasons 2 - 4).



    I honestly feel this is The Underrated Luthor. Given what the show was, he brought the crazy to Lex.

  8. #68
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Next we come to the first Live-action Lex who was clearly influenced by the Iron Age interpretation of John Byrne's run on Superman

    Lex Luthor V: John Shea (LOIS & CLARK tv show)



    He was the first stab at Businessman Lex over Scientist Lex.

    I really liked Shea's Luthor. He brought a fierce charisma that no previous Live-Action Lex could do. I hated the fact that he had hair, but the rest was great.

  9. #69
    Fantastic Member llozymandias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    Next we come to the first Live-action Lex who was clearly influenced by the Iron Age interpretation of John Byrne's run on Superman

    Lex Luthor V: John Shea (LOIS & CLARK tv show)



    He was the first stab at Businessman Lex over Scientist Lex.

    I really liked Shea's Luthor. He brought a fierce charisma that no previous Live-Action Lex could do. I hated the fact that he had hair, but the rest was great.

    Shea's Luthor was underused. In the first season he was used as mostly part of the supporting cast. For the rest of the series' run, he only appeared a few times. I hated that Shea's Luthor was not a genius.
    John Martin, citizen & rightful ruler of the omniverse.

  10. #70
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by llozymandias View Post
    I hated that Shea's Luthor was not a genius.
    I agree. I think he was a pretty interesting character, but he didn't have the one thing that I think it's most important for Luthor to have- his intellect.

    My favorite episode of Luthor in the DCAU was Injustice for All because it showed Lex doing some really interesting mad science. We learned back in Ghost in the Machine that he was a brilliant roboticist, that he didn't just build his company on willpower and jerkery, but on actual inventions, but I don't think it was until Justice League that we really got to see them use it as best they could.

    That super-genius is an aspect of the character that Shea's Luthor seems to lack completely- a shame, since he was such an interesting figure in a lot of other respects.

  11. #71
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lexrules View Post
    Well it's not real life it's a comic book movie so comparing real life ideas to what a comic book is just doesn't make sense. You are looking to much into a movie that was meant to be lighthearted set in a comic book world, especially a Superman comic book world where everything and anything could and should be possible.
    Here's thing, I personally felt Hackman's Lex was for the most part campier than how he was portrayed in the comics at the time. It's just so weird that we had 2 Academy Award winning actors playing Luthor and neither of them really impressed me.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

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  12. #72
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    And now we come to arguably the greatest (and indisputably my favorite) live-action Lex Luthor of them yet:

    Lex Luthor VI - Michael Rosenbaum (SMALLVILLE tv show)







    He was Lex Luthor full-time from the first seven seasons of SMALLVILLE and then reappeared 3 seasons later for the final episode. From Fall 2001 - Spring 2008, and then again for the series finale episode in Spring 2011, he put out a much deeper, much more emotional Luthor than had ever been seen before (or since). No one has put in more screentime as Luthor than Rosenbaum.

  13. #73
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    And now we come to the last man to play a live-action version of the Greatest Criminal Mind of Our Time:

    Lex Luthor VII - Kevin Spacey (SUPERMAN RETURNS)







    Man, I have conflicting feeling about this Lex. On the one hand, Spacey radiated intelligent malice so much more effortlessly than the last big-time cinematic Luthor (Gene Hackman). On the other hand, Spacey was forced to keep up the stupid land obsession that Hackman portrayed and it completely limits his character's motivation. Spacey had the presence, the gravitas and the credibility (THE USUAL SUSPECTS, SE7EN, AMERICAN BEAUTY) to reach "Greatest Luthor of All Time" status... only director Bryan Singer and his Donner fetish wouldn't let him.

    My feelings on Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor in SUPERMAN RETURNS can be summed up in 4 words: Such. A. Wasted. Opportunity.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    And now we come to the last man to play a live-action version of the Greatest Criminal Mind of Our Time:

    Lex Luthor VII - Kevin Spacey (SUPERMAN RETURNS)







    Man, I have conflicting feeling about this Lex. On the one hand, Spacey radiated intelligent malice so much more effortlessly than the last big-time cinematic Luthor (Gene Hackman). On the other hand, Spacey was forced to keep up the stupid land obsession that Hackman portrayed and it completely limits his character's motivation. Spacey had the presence, the gravitas and the credibility (THE USUAL SUSPECTS, SE7EN, AMERICAN BEAUTY) to reach "Greatest Luthor of All Time" status... only director Bryan Singer and his Donner fetish wouldn't let him.

    My feelings on Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor in SUPERMAN RETURNS can be summed up in 4 words: Such. A. Wasted. Opportunity.
    I so agree. The potential here was mind-blowing, and he was shackled by the poor writing.
    Life is but a dream

  15. #75
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    Yeah, I'm very conflicted about this Lex. I kind of feel bad for Spacey in a way, he was clearly trying to do something interesting with the part. However, Singer was so obsessed with making a two and a half-hour love letter to Richard Donner that Lex really suffered as a result. They gave him the same stupid land obsession that Hackman's Lex had, actually his plan in SR was even MORE idiotic than it was in STM, and the same campiness. It wasn't Kevin Spacey playing Lex Luthor, it was Kevin Spacey playing Gene Hackman playing Lex Luthor. And that's a shame because Spacey had proven time and again (The Usual Suspects, Se7en, House of Cards, etc that he can play really menacing "mastermind" villains. And I do think that Spacey made his Lex somewhat better by playing him much more cold and ruthless than Hackman did. The confrontation between him and Superman on New Krypton was actually really good and shows just how much potential was wasted by a substandard script.

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