- "I figured out way back if God is all-powerful, he cannot be all-good. And if he is all-good, then he cannot be all powerful. And neither can you be. They need to see the fraud you are. With their eyes. The blood on your hands."
- ―Lex Luthor to Superman[src]
Alexander Joseph "Lex" Luthor, Jr. is a megalomaniacal multi-billionaire businessman, as well as one of the smartest individuals if not the smartest in the world by far. He is the former owner and CEO of LexCorp Industries.
Lex Luthor also becomes the greatest arch nemesis of Superman, whose potential to cause the Knightmare and whose more or less very existence makes Lex feel extremely threatened, which makes the relentlessly ambitious supergenius go out of his way to expose the godlike alien superhero as a fraud, and to subsequently destroy him, by first pitting Superman against Batman in a duel to the death, which ultimately fails as neither Superman or Batman kill the other like Lex hoped by settling their differences, and then his monstrous creation Doomsday, which does manage to kill Superman after a vicious battle.
Following the founding of the Justice League and defeat of Steppenwolf, Lex escaped captivity, acquired a private yacht, and met up with the assassin Deathstroke to discuss their tentative, forthcoming partnership, which involved Batman in some way.
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Early life
- 1.2 CEO of LexCorp Industries
- 1.3 The Red Capes are coming
- 1.4 The death of Superman
- 1.5 Escape from Arkham
- 2 Personality
- 3 Abilities
- 4 Equipment
- 5 Relationships
- 6 Trivia
- 7 Behind the scenes
- 8 References
- 9 External links
- "See, what we call God depends on our tribe, Clark Joe, 'cause God is tribal, God takes sides. No man in the sky intervened when I was a boy to deliver me from Daddy's fist and abominations!"
- ―Lex Luthor to Superman[src]
Alexander Joseph "Lex" Luthor, Jr. was born in 1984, in Metropolis to Alexander Luthor, Sr., an East German-born billionaire petrochemical and heavy machinery developer, and was subsequently named after his father. While the family's company, LexCorp Industries, was in fact named after Lex's father, the elder Luthor claimed at investor pitches to have named it after his son as well, while Lex himself often mused at how wealthy old women found his father "[writing] checks for Lex" adorable.
While publicly popular and affable, Luthor Sr. was a very cruel and despicable man behind closed doors, with Lex later remarking in outrage that no "man in the sky" would ever come to save him from "[his father's] fists and abominations." This induced a traumatized Lex to gain a militantly misotheistic view of God, believing that if He were omnipotent, then it would be logically impossible for Him to be omnibenevolent and vice versa, thereby solidifying his belief that power cannot be innocent (referring to the antithesis of that as the "oldest lie in America"), and that all individuals with great power and popularity must be evil by definition.
CEO of LexCorp Industries
By age 16, the wunderkind Lex was left with the legacy of LexCorp as its only heir shortly after his father passed away unexpectedly, taking control of the business and successfully transformed it from a petrochemical and heavy machinery dinosaur into a cutting-edge Fortune 500 technology giant. In fact, the very considerable business achievements of his father pale in comparison to the astonishingly prolific accomplishments of the younger Luthor. Among other things, Lex also inherited his father's world-famous collection of meteorite crystals, which, as he would later learn, included kryptonite minerals.
Lex is known to have at one point encountered Amanda Waller and familiarized himself with her organization, ARGUS, and also learned of her Task Force X idea, as he subtly refers to all three while conversing with Ron Troupe.
During the chaos of the Black Zero event, Lex's company was known to have suffered several losses, including the destruction of Lexcorp Tower and at least one payload truck. According to Lex, during the events of the event, he and his assistant Mercy Graves were watching the live footage as Wayne Tower was destroyed. He then remarked to his assistant about the potential waste of the Wayne Enterprises technologies that would be lost in the attack.
Auction at the Hotel Grand Lux
Approximately two weeks after the Black Zero Event, Lex was part of a charity auction at the Hotel Grand Lux made to benefit the victims of the disaster. Lex and Mercy Graves surprised Bruce Wayne who, like Lex, would be auctioning off a bit of their time for the winning bidder. Bruce was immediately turned off by Lex's appearance. The situation only got worse when Lex's insincere condolence for the destruction of Wayne Tower focused upon the technologies that were lost in the attack, rather than the actual victims. After Bruce was promptly called off due to a developing situation, he made sure to emphasize that the winning bid for his time would garner double whatever Lex would offer.
Interview with Ron Troupe
Shortly before the release of his company's revolutionary new operating system Lex/OS, Lex Luthor was approached by reporter Ron Troupe, and agreed to meet him for 15 minutes at the opulent Royal Penthouse Suite at the Park Metropolis Downtown. Lex was then promptly interviewed on a number of subjects, including the alien hero Superman and the Gotham City vigilante Batman. Right afterwards, Lex offers to play bowling with Troupe, confident in his ability to "destroy" the latter.
Purchasing Hanford's holdings
- "There you have it - Lex Luthor, as much a hero to Metropolis as Superman."
- "No. Not like him."
- —Lex Luthor to a reporter[src]
After Hanford Technologies was successfully exposed by Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane, Lex arrived at a construction site of the company, and announced that LexCorp Industries was purchasing all of Hanford's holdings (including the site), as well as retaining all of Hanford's employees, as he claimed that the employees should not suffer from the immoral actions of their former CEO. Lex proceeded to admit that despite his failings, Mark Hanford had been a good CEO, whose big mistake was selling illegal Kryptonian technology. Later, in the privacy of his car, with only his personal assistant Mercy Graves there to hear him, Lex finished - because there were so many more interesting things that could potentially be done with it.
Rebuilding of Metropolis
Due to Lex Luthor's prolific philanthropic efforts to help financially support the rebuilding of Metropolis (as well as his company, LexCorp Industries), local politicians and media personalities called the companies that left Metropolis traitors, while a growing number of corporations (including Kord Industries), inspired by Lex Luthor, decided to follow his example, with some of them who had previously planned to pull out of Metropolis reversing course, and others, that had never been in Metropolis at all, choosing to expand there. In addition, while funding the rebuilding of Metropolis, Lex also had the Lexor Hotel built, thus naming it after himself. Indeed, due to his actions, some even claimed that Lex was as much a hero to Metropolis as Superman himself. Lex, however, dismissed the comparison, claiming that the alien superhero was a figure too mysterious and controversial for him to be a good comparison, but in light of Superman's debut, Lex claimed that recognizing the importance of the "ordinary" citizens of Metropolis (such as rescue workers, first responders, and countless ordinary citizens, who also helped save others in the Black Zero Event) had become more important than ever.
Learning about Superman
- "I'll be in here for the rest of the day. Make sure I'm not disturbed."
- ―Lex Luthor to Mercy Graves[src]
Lex then proceeded to return to his LexCorp facility, admitting to Mercy Graves that while him not knowing much about Superman is in fact completely true, he has been "working on changing that." With those words, Lex enters a private room with CCTV screens (displaying the corpse of General Dru-Zod, the Fortress of Solitude, and a Kryptonian DNA double helix), asking Mercy to make sure he isn't disturbed, as he plans to spend the rest of the day in there.
During this time, Lex had a woman named Teri meet with Professor Garcia and another man, who discussed the video footage of Superman saving a runaway train full of passengers. Teri spoke the words spoken to her through an earpiece by Lex (who had her appear to agree with Garcia), while the latter viewed the entire meeting from another CCTV screen.
During this time, Lex watched on as Firefly was paid to blow up a merchandise warehouse in Gotham City, in order to test out the capabilities of the infamous Batman. Lex set up another CCTV at the warehouse beforehand, in order to watch events unfold.
Hence, it would be around this time that Lex learns everything about Batman and Superman (notably their alter-egos, powers, abilities, physical and emotional weaknesses, relationships, and psychological profiles), as well as that of other metahumans: the immortal Amazon demigoddess Wonder Woman (a World War I era photo of whom, together with Steve Trevor's team, which he obtained with facial recognition software), the Atlantean Aquaman (footage of whom he found in the Pacific with the NSA's UUV drones), the speedster Flash (footage of whom he obtained from a Central City pharmacy's security camera), and the technologically enhanced Cyborg (footage of whom he obtained from a video log on the S.T.A.R. Labs database).
Framing Superman for Nairomi
In order to carry out his plan, Lex employs Anatoli Knyazev and his men, arms them with innovative alloy bullets (which his company sold to the CIA, in turn selling them to Nairomian terrorists as a weapons test), and orders them to murder all of the men of the Nairomian terrorist warlord Amajagh as soon as Superman arrives (to save a captured Lois Lane), and for Knyazev to mutilate the corpses with his flamethrower, in order to make it look like Superman had murdered them with his heat vision.
Shortly thereafter, Lex hires and blackmails a Nairomian woman, Kahina Ziri, to lie and testify against Superman's actions in Nairomi to the US Senate, giving her a specific script to follow when speaking to Senator Finch. Hence, Kahina claims that her parents were among those killed in the incident after Superman's involvement.
Meeting Finch and Barrows
Lex Luthor himself is visited at LexCorp Industries by senators Finch and Barrows, and he proposes to them the idea of using the recently acquired kryptonite xenomineral as an official "silver bullet" deterrent against Superman, to hold him in check if the alien superhero were to ever decide to turn against humanity. In order to forge such a "silver bullet," Lex requests Finch to grant him an import license for the large piece of kryptonite (nicknamed "Emerald City" by Lex) lying in the Indian Ocean (at the wreckage of General Zod's World Engine). Finch leaves, considering the request, while Barrows stays, clearly intrigued by Lex, and intent to continue a discussion.
Lex quickly manages to persuade the good-natured senator Barrows to grant him access to the Fortress of Solitude, and to the corpse of General Zod. Lex rewards the cooperative politician with the cherry-flavored Jolly Ranchers, and is quick to exploit his new access - taking a good look around the Fortress, and subtly peeling off the fingerprints from General Zod's corpse (with a kryptonite-bladed scalpel).
The Red Capes are coming
- "The Red Capes are coming! The Red Capes are coming! You and your hearings. Galloping through the streets to warn us. One if by land, two if by air. Mhm. Do you know the oldest lie in America, Senator? Can I call you June?"
- ―Lex Luthor mocking Senator Finch[src]
Several days later, Senator Finch is escorted into Lex's study by his right-hand personal assistant Mercy Graves. Lex is initially excited to see her, offers her some whiskey (from her native state of Kentucky), and monologues about how he keeps everything in the study of his father, Alexander Luthor Sr., the same, musing that if he persistently did so, then perhaps his father would return. But Lex then dismisses this, as the "wistful thinking of orphan boys."
Finch promptly tells Lex that she's decided not to grant him the import license. Lex is visibly enraged and sneers, beginning to nervously tap his fingers, begins to tell her what he considers to be the "oldest lie in America," but Finch physically stops him, letting Lex know that she sees right through his altruistic façade, telling him that he can "Take a bucket of piss and call it Granny's peach tea, take a weapon of assassination and call it deterrence," but that she wouldn't "drink it." Lex gives her a sinister grin, and states that he has considered turning an old picture of his father's (depicting a battle between Heaven's angels and Hell's demons) upside down (leaving the demons above, seemingly prevailing over the angels), and enigmatically telling her that "the Red Capes are coming." Finch then promptly departs.
Meeting Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent
- "Boys! Mhm! Bruce Wayne meets Clark Kent! I love it! I love bringing people together!"
- ―Lex Luthor to Clark and Bruce[src]
Lex organizes a fundraiser event at the Metropolis library, with the invited guests including Gotham City billionaire Bruce Wayne, Daily Planet reporter Clark Kent (with Lex specifically anonymously requesting Perry White that Clark be the one to attend and cover this event in the press), and Louvre Museum antiquities curator Diana Prince.
Lex, as the event's organizer, is therefore invited to make a speech. In it, he mentions the poor origins of his father, Alexander Luthor Sr. (who had once had trouble affording books in East Germany), and makes an allusion to the Ancient Greek story of how the Titan Prometheus was brutally punished by Zeus, King of the Old Gods, for enlightening humankind (much to the visible chagrin of Diana Prince, Zeus' daughter). Near the end of his speech, Lex acknowledges the "bittersweet truth" that knowledge is power, but he then suddenly stumbles over his words, internally realizing their contradiction when applied to him. Lex is then quick to end his address and excuse himself from the stage, successfully covering up his blunder.
Lex then promptly walks up to Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent, interrupting their somewhat uncomfortable conversation about Batman and Superman. Lex enthusiastically introduces himself to them (aware that he is in fact speaking with Batman and Superman's alter egos), and, in order to continue slyly manipulating them into a conflict, complements the exceptional firmness of Clark's handshake, and therefore jokingly advises Bruce not "pick a fight with [Clark]." Determined to have Batman obtain the information regarding the kryptonite and Metahuman Thesis, Lex invites Bruce to visit the LexCorp Industries research and development facilities. However, at that moment, Mercy Graves comes up and lets Lex know that a governor wants to speak to him. So Lex is forced to excuse himself, with Bruce offering to possibly visit the facilities another time. Lex's plan, however, was still successful, as Bruce still obtained the information, having uploaded it unto a hacking device, though it was temporarily borrowed from him by Diana.
As a result of Senator Finch unexpectedly refusing to grant him an import license for the Indian Ocean kryptonite, Lex promptly decides to smuggle it in instead. Hence, he orders Anatoli Knyazev and his men to smuggle in the kryptonite to LexCorp Research Park (fully aware that Batman would try to intercept the transportation of the mineral as Lex intends for the vigilante to steal it). When Knyazev arrives at LexCorp Research Park with the stolen kryptonite (with this revealing that Batman had failed to steal the kryptonite although this was due to Superman's unforeseen intervention), Lex promptly examines it and exchanges a sinister sneer with Mercy Graves.
Bribing Keefe and bombing the Capitol
- "Do you know the oldest lie in America, Senator? It's that power can be innocent."
- ―Lex Luthor to June Finch[src]
Luthor then had Knyazev organize Cesar Santos to be murdered by his fellow Blackgate Penitentiary inmates, while Lex himself pays the bail of embittered cripple Wallace Keefe (who was in the same prison as Santos) and invites him to visit his villa. Lex wants Keefe to testify against Superman in the upcoming Senate committee, and he gifts Keefe with a motorized wheelchair (made of an innovative metal alloy) to sweeten his deal.
Right after a guilt-ridden Kahina Ziri has left the US Capitol (managing to tell Senator Finch about Lex's exploitation of her), Lex arrives (just in time to see Finch whispering about Kahina's revelation to a fellow senator), and is present when Superman himself arrives to the hearing. However, before it begins, Lex asks Mercy Graves to reserve him a seat, before speaking to Senator Finch with an air of thinly-veiled condescension. Before leaving, Lex finally tells Finch the "oldest lie in America" - the belief that power can be innocent.
Shortly after the committee begins with the address of Senator Finch, Lex still hasn't arrived. Finch then suddenly notices a jar of urine standing on her desk, labelled "Granny's Peach Tea" (an epithet that she herself had used not along ago), which visibly startles her, making Finch pause mid-speech, horrified at the realization of what was about to occur. At that moment, a bomb (secretly planted inside Keefe's wheelchair by Lex) explodes, killing all present, except for the invulnerable, yet very mortified and heartbroken Superman. Because the wheelchair was lead-lined, Superman believed that it was his fault for purposely passing it. In order to tie up the last loose end, he has Knyazev permanently silence Kahina Ziri by pushing her under an incoming train, killing her.
Later that evening, Lex arrives at his LexCorp Research Park and witnesses a considerable trail of destruction left behind by Batman (who was induced by the red notes and recent events to finally take offensive action against Superman, by breaking into the well-guarded research park). As Lex steps inside the building, he observes a CCTV recorded footage of Batman seriously injuring all of the guards (swooping down on them from above, like an actual bat) despite their tireless attempts to shoot him (evidenced by the numerous cartridges lying on the floor in the aftermath that Lex also observes). Lex then approaches the object of his inquiry, which is the empty kryptonite chamber (with a batarang left in it by Batman for Lex to see). With this acting as final proof that Batman had successfully stolen the kryptonite, Lex smiles with sadistic glee at all the pieces of his grand plan finally beginning to fall together.
As the news ponders over the tragedy of the bombing and speculates about Superman's possible involvement behind it, Lex ominously stands atop the LexCorp Tower, and looks at the setting sun with a gleeful sneer on his face.
Entering the scout ship
With Finch and Barrows out of the way and most of the public in hateful opposition to Superman, Lex finally uses the fingerprints of General Zod to enter the Fortress of Solitude, and re-insert Zod's command key into it, bringing the dormant starship online again. The AI's voice inquires if Lex intends to assume command, to which he answers affirmatively, though Lex is visibly somewhat nervous at first.
Lex quickly learns that the starship's Kryptonian archive has accumulated knowledge from 100,000 alien worlds, and he demands to be taught all of it, further enhancing his already brilliant mind to supergenius level. Among the tremendous amount of new knowledge Lex gains, he learns of the ancient Kryptonian monster Doomsday, and of invading extraterrestrial Parademon army of the New God Steppenwolf, of Steppenwolf's fearsome master Darkseid, and of the Unity. Lex seemed so excited about his discoveries concerning the New Gods and Apokolips, that he draws symbols of the 3 Mother Boxes compromising the Unity numerous times in coded notes.
Lex then decides to re-create Doomsday as a second contingency plan, in case Batman fails to bring Superman down. In order to begin the lengthy process, Lex brings in General Zod's corpse (lamenting that the Kryptonian invader had "[flown] too close to the sun") into the Genesis Chamber, cuts his own palm, and pours his own blood onto Zod's face. The starship's AI warns Lex that re-creating the fearsome monster was forbidden by the Kryptonian Law Council long ago, but Lex notes that the council is long-gone, along with its destroyed planet, and therefore orders the process to commence.
Ultimatum for Superman
- "And now, you will fly to him, and you will battle him. To the death. Black and blue. Fight Night! The greatest gladiator match in the history of the world: God versus Man! Day versus Night! Son of Krypton versus Bat of Gotham!"
- ―Lex Luthor to Superman[src]
While Doomsday is still forming, Lex continues his first contingency plan by having Knyazev's men kidnap Martha Kent, and later kidnap Lois Lane and bring her before him, to the top of LexCorp Tower. When joined by her, Lois angrily confronts Lex about the innovative metal fired during the Nairomi Incident, and calling him psychotic. Lex, however, dismisses that as a mere "3 syllable word for any thought too big for little minds." He then seemingly digresses, starting to talk about circles and triangles, eventually ending with Euclid's triangle inequality: "the shortest distance between any two points, is a straight path. And I believe the straightest path to Superman is a pretty little road called Lois Lane." As he utters the last word, Lex promptly pushes Lois off the ledge of LexCorp Tower.
Just as Lex had anticipated, Superman promptly arrives, saving her just in time. Superman flies back up, and angrily threatens to bring the ambitious supergenius in "without breaking [him]." However, Luthor confidently retorts by revealing that he is aware of Superman's secret identity, and proceeds to tell Clark about his views on both him and God, stating that "God is tribal." Lex then reveals that his father, Alexander Luthor Sr., while seemingly affable in public, was egregiously cruel and evil behind closed doors, thereby abusing his defenseless son with both fists and "abominations." Due to there having been no "man in the sky" to protect Lex from this suffering, he subsequently became a traumatized militant misotheist, burdened by the theological problem of evil (that if God is truly omnipotent, then He cannot be omnibenevolent, and vice versa), and concluding that power cannot be innocent. Hence, Superman (whom Lex compares to the deities Horus, Apollo, and Jehovah), due to his own godlike power, has the same problem of evil applicable to him in Lex's eyes, and Lex is now determined to prove this to the world by having him engage Batman in a mortal duel (revealing Wallace's relief check/ghost messaging's sent to Bruce were his handiwork), the "greatest gladiator match in the history of the world."
When Superman attempts to refuse, Lex reveals that the former's mother, Martha Kent, is held in captivity in a top-secret location by Knyazev (producing several photos of a horrified Martha tied up with the word "Witch" written on her forehead in her own blood as proof). An incredibly furious Superman seems ready to destroy Lex with his heat vision, but the latter says that if Superman attempts to kill him or fly away, Martha will be burned alive, and the only way for Superman to save her, is to fly to Gotham City, fight and kill Batman in a vicious duel to the death, and subsequently bring the vigilante's head to Lex. Regardless of how the fight ends, however, Lex is confident that it will still expose the theological problem of evil represented by Superman - if Superman defeats and kills Batman (to save his mother's life) he will prove to be supremely powerful yet not supremely good, and if Superman loses (due to holding back, and his weakness to kryptonite) to Batman and dies, he will prove to be supremely good yet not supremely powerful. And in turn, which ever one of the two heroes survives the mortal duel and confronts Lex, is destined to be destroyed when Lex unleashes Doomsday.
An incredibly furious Superman is left with no choice but to comply with Lex's ultimatum, and he flies off, much to the delight of Lex, who gleefully muses that now "God bends to [his] will."
- " I cannot let you win. I gave the Bat a fighting chance, but he was not strong enough. If man won't kill God, the Devil will do it! An ancient Kryptonian deformity; blood of my blood, born to destroy you!... Your Doomsday."
- ―Lex Luthor[src]
Lex then goes to the Fortress of Solitude, awaiting Superman's return, as Doomsday's animation is nearing completion. As the clock reached its end, Lex picks it up from the table and casually shrugs as time runs out. Having mostly recovered from Batman's kryptonite gas grenades, Superman flies to the Fortress and smashes through the starship's hull to face Lex. The oblivious Luthor then proceeds to the phone to contact Knyazev, only to find out that the mercenary was dead, Batman allied with Superman and Martha was safe. The unyielding supergenius, however is unfazed by the news of his failed plan, claims not to know how to lose, reaffirms his unconditional misotheistic hatred of Superman (who's "sin" is his very existence), and is quick to reveal his secret contingency plan - a massive hybrid Kryptonian monster grown from General Zod's corpse and Lex's blood, Superman's "Doomsday." Lex gleefully added that now God (represented by Superman) was "as good as dead," since the "Devil" (represented by Doomsday) would succeed in "killing God" where Batman had failed.
The gigantic monster then proceeds to swiftly break out of the ship's birthing matrix and hurls a monstrous punch at Lex. However, the punch is intercepted by Superman, who blocks and counters with a mighty blow of his own. The battling duo then proceed to break out of the Fortress, continuing their mortal duel, much to Lex's delight.
Lex's grandiose contingency plan is ultimately successful, as Superman is ultimately killed while taking down the monstrous Doomsday, to the dismay of Batman, Wonder Woman, and Lois, who all witness his final heroic sacrifice.
Communion and arrest
At the same time that Superman was dying from the monster's blows, Superman's screams could be heard reverberating through the ground, reaching into the Kryptonian craft and the Genesis Chamber where Lex stood, hearing the reverberations and nodding, as if understanding their significance. He then returned his attention back to watching the Liquid Geo projection of the New God Steppenwolf activating a Mother Box.
A SWAT team then sets out to investigate the Kryptonian Ship.
As they enter the Kryptonian craft's Genesis Chamber, the team briefly sees Lex still sitting in front of a projection of Steppenwolf, holding three Apokoliptan Mother Boxes. However, the projection is dispersed almost at once, and Lex turns, to face them, with guns aiming all at him. Lex then surrenders without a fight.
Visited by Batman
- "Look at us, this is how it all caves in. Civilization on the wane, manners out the window, but who would believe me. I-I...I'm insane. I'm not even fit to stand trial."
- ―Lex Luthor mocks Batman[src]
Shortly after his imprisonment in Belle Reve supermax prison as a supercriminal, Lex Luthor (now shaven-headed) is unexpectedly visited in his jail cell by Batman, with the latter expressing his anger at Lex's actions, pinning the unabated supergenius against a wall and threatening him, but Lex boldly counters, by sneering and revealing that he knows Batman's secret identity, but that nobody would believe him, as Lex is perceived to be insane. Batman then reveals to a dismayed Lex that he has arranged for the latter to be taken to Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane. Lex, however, swiftly regains his composure
, sneers again, and states that "God" is now dead, and that there is something else, something bigger coming, from outer space. Seething with rage, Batman punches the wall with his branding-ring, leaving the mark of a bat symbol on the wall. When Lex turns his head, he sees that Batman has disappeared. He yells at the Dark Knight, that the bells are ringing, and gleefully warns him about Darkseid's arrival on Earth and then he begins mockingly mimicking the dinging sounds, knowing he would find the metahumans and stop him, retaining his confidence in the Dark Knight until the very end.
- "If you want the Batman, here is something that can help you. His name is Bruce Wayne."
- ―Lex Luthor, to Slade Wilson[src]
Two years after the death of Superman, around the time of Steppenwolf's arrival and his defeat at the hands of those Lex reluctantly believed in, Lex escaped Arkham Asylum to retreat to a lavish private yacht, with a group of female bodyguards. Shortly thereafter, Lex contacted the notorious mercenary Deathstroke, inviting him to his boat which was located in Monaco. There, he began to discuss a mysterious plan involving Deathstroke's nemesis, the Batman. Luthor informed Deathstroke that Batman's true identity was Bruce Wayne, and the two then discussed what to do next. In the wake of his escape, the Daily Planet reported that experts put the blame on Luthor for the alien invasion that occurred in Pozharnov Russia.
- "The bittersweet pain among men is having knowledge with no power... because that is paradoxical!"
- ―Lex Luthor[src]
Being extremely intelligent, eccentric, self-conscious, ambitious, courageous, and charismatic, Lex is actually the ultimate living personification of intellectualism, quite possibly the greatest mind in the world (in many ways considerably intellectually superior to even most geniuses), using this tremendous power as an altruistic humanist, a man of and for the people (with Lex comparing himself to the enlightening gift-giving figure of Prometheus, and supporting it well with his superb demagogic skills). While he would appear an ideal image of human perfection, this nature of his is tainted to a hideous degree by his horrifically unstable ego deriving from his high horse and his low morality deriving from his cruel and traumatic upbringing, meaning he has little inhibition about seeing the world prosper only as he sees fit. Lex's ultimate wish aside from the power he seeks to better humanity according to his own wisdom is to destroy those that he deems as his competition - namely his nemesis Superman, who he foresees destroying humanity altogether n direct contradiction to his own desire to elevate us to our peak, although he also feels (much less) threatened by metahumans in general (specifically Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Flash, and Cyborg of the Justice League) and so puts a lot of effort into keeping close tabs on them. Furthermore, Lex's ruthless attempts to prevent Superman from ever having apocalyptic ramifications imply psychopathy, as they are extremely immoral and egregiously ruthless, with him having little care for the methods he uses, or their impact on others, so he is actually the ultimate embodiment of a utilitarian "the ends justify the means" mindset, as he (unlike Bruce Wayne) knows not whether something as extreme as the Knightmare will come to be, but not caring. This is shown when he confesses that he detests not Superman himself, but the theoretical Knightmare, before citing his mere presence is making bad things happen, meaning simply existing makes him sinful in Lex's eyes, an oxymoron. Feeling threatened on a personal level because of what Superman's power means for him, and on an external level because of how Superman's attachment to his mother and girlfriend are his extremely conditional reasons for wanting to keep the world in one piece, Lex is envious and bitter enough to openly describe the former in infernal and diabolical terms, subtly comparing Superman to a werewolf (by referring to kryptonite as a "silver bullet"), a "flying demon" (which he uses to justify his threat of ruthlessly burning Martha Kent alive), and finally, to the biblical Satan himself, who had originated not in "Hell beneath [Lex]," but had come "from the sky" (as a fallen archangel), inducing humanity to admire him. Lex shares similar sentiments towards metahumans in general, though colloquially addressing them as "the basis of [humanities] myths," "exceptional beings" and "gods among men" living on Earth. As he highlighted the notion of planetary security to Senator Finch, Lex also categorized the danger presented in their presence, citing them in the same vein of diabolism as Superman, stating if the government forged their silver bullet but didn't use it then "[mankind] won't have to depend on the kindness of monsters."
This immense fear and hatred of powerful individuals with popularity seemingly stems from the great amounts of apprehension and resentment that Lex harbors for his late father, Alexander Luthor Sr., as the latter, while both powerful and popular, was extremely cruel and egregious behind closed doors, physically abusing his young and helpless son with both fists and "abominations." Thus, Lex's experienced abuse, without any intervention from any "man in the sky," immensely traumatizes him, which in turn induces Lex to gain a militantly misotheistic view of God, believing that if God were omnipotent, then his benevolence logically could not be absolute and vice versa (the theological problem of evil), thereby solidifying his belief that power cannot be innocent (referring to the antithesis of that as the "oldest lie in America").
Somewhat ironically, despite his misotheism, Lex has a penchant for constantly implementing allusions to major figures of both pagan and biblical theology, with him notably comparing himself to Prometheus, General Zod to Icarus, and Superman to Zeus, Horus, Apollo, Jehovah, and Satan. He even compares himself to the biblical God in one way, claiming albeit insightfully to hate "the sin, not the sinner," and plays God by creating the monster Doomsday. When making these allusions, however, Lex tends to cast these theologies' supreme gods in a not very discreet negative light (expertly finding the right myths for that, as he did with Zeus' punishment of Prometheus), to the point that Wonder Woman was visibly enraged by Lex's description of Zeus and the Old Gods.
Ironically, while the egregious abuse would make Lex immensely despise his father, he would eventually come to share some of his father's traits as an adult, though it could be argued that Lex took all of these traits even further, as he would notably become more intelligent, skilled, relentless, and powerful than his father had ever been. However, this is hard to pin down as little is known about Luthor Sr. at all. Hence, Lex projects his childhood trauma and theological resentment onto the godlike Superman, determined to prove to both himself and to humanity at large that the alien superhero, while being supremely powerful, is actually not supremely good, and is in fact an abominable fraud. However, Lex notably does not have the same hatred towards General Zod, and actually seems to admire him, with Lex tearfully remarking that the latter had "[flown] too close to the sun." This is most likely due the fact that General Zod, unlike Superman, did not contradict Lex's worldview, due to Zod's godlike power being used for the benevolent intent of preserving a race rather than avenging a loved one.
Ultimately however, while Lex does somewhat admire General Zod, he proves himself to be a considerably greater enemy for Superman. Zod, after all, had initially tried to persuade Superman to side with him, and had genuinely cared for his allies (especially his closest and most trusted one, Faora-Ul), all while seeking to protect, save and resurrect what remained of his destroyed beloved world and his race. Lex, by contrast, is far more relentless and ruthless and pragmatic, as he instantly resolves to become enemies with Superman (viewing the latter's very existence as a "sin"), was willing to become a supercriminal, committing unspeakable crimes against peace and humanity, all for the purpose of destroying his nemesis (and what the latter represents) to prevent the end of days, of proving his cynical ideology and points (based in the theological problem of evil), and of reaffirming his deluded, megalomaniacal godly self-image to himself, while ultimately being egregiously egotistical, not caring about anyone other than himself, as even Doomsday (Lex's own Frankensteinian creation, whom Lex thought of as a surrogate son of sorts) and Mercy Graves (Lex's closest and most trusted ally) were ultimately disposable to him, being but means to an end. Still, their silver gleaming as their fervent and righteous determination to protect and preserve their race, with only their methods of doing so actually making them immoral. Lex even shows himself to enjoy a good fight, since right before Lex is about to ruthlessly have Senator Finch killed, and later when he threatens to ruthlessly burn Martha Kent alive, Lex actually manages to find both situations funny, and cracks several sinister black humor pun jokes, with gleeful sadism. In addition, while all of Superman's other haters and detractors were guilt-ridden following his death and mourned him, with even the exceptionally amoral Amanda Waller posthumously respecting him, while even the brutal and cynical Batman was inspired by him to better himself, Lex was as gleeful as ever, in utter defiance of himself being exposed as a super criminal and incarcerated in Belle Reve supermax.
Because of how complex his mind is and how young the man himself is, Lex has shown to have ticks implying moderate mental imbalance. This is shown by him rubbing his arm against a display case or drumming his fingers against a wall, although he has even been shown to have fits of psychotic frustration and rage when talking to a large group of people and not knowing what to say, due to his extremely convoluted mind being otherwise occupied at that moment. Hence, when Lois Lane pettily calls him "psychotic," Lex smugly dismisses that word as merely referring to "any thought too big for little minds." Due to his aforementioned God complex he shares with Enchantress that only his way can bring order that lasts, Lex, despite his ability to kill Superman himself (with the acquired kryptonite), instead waits for the opportune moment to manipulate Superman and Batman into a fierce mortal duel, in order to first discredit the Man of Steel, so as to avoid Superman becoming a martyr, and to simultaneously humiliate Superman, by having a being of godlike power killed by an ordinary man (supported by Lex' many biblical allusions when gloatingly describing the heroes' planned mortal duel). Overall, while actually sane and only feigning insanity during his Belle Reve supermax imprisonment, Lex had in fact grown increasingly unhinged, due to the existential crisis that opposing Superman induced within him. Lex takes smug pride in his phenomenal intellect, usually sadistically thinking of others as his inferiors and pawns (managing to slyly reveal, for instance, that he is aware of Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent's alter egos, without them realizing it, and smugly sneering at the prospect of knowing something that Batman doesn't when the latter ambushes him in Belle Reve), proudly proclaiming how easy it had been for him to outsmart and manipulate even the experienced tactical and detective genius Batman, in addition to claiming that the exceptionally smart and insightful Lois Lane has only a "little mind" compared to his. Indeed, Lex's reliance on intellect and contingencies make him far more effective than almost all other supervillains. Hence, like, Amanda Waller, Lex is a manipulative and devious leverager, but an even more effective one than her, as Lex relies on more than just leverage, and never allows leverage-based power to become his weakness. Just like Enchantress, Lex is driven purely by a single-minded desire to order things according to his own wisdom, akin to a God complex, though he consistently relies far more on intellect and plans, never allowing arrogance to become his weakness. Like General Zod, Lex is a ruthless and indomitable winner who refuses to lose, though even more effective, due to not being limited by thinking boundaries or dogmatic tunnel vision. Like the Joker, Lex bears a penchant for unspeakable crimes, though far more covert and implicit, and hence far more successful at keeping those crimes from getting tied to him, although his crimes are also committed for the greater good as opposed to anarchy for its own sake. Like Ares, Lex is an incredible deceiver who covertly manipulates his enemies and superbly hides in plain sight, though he has a greater number of contingencies planned. Finally, Lex is as intelligent as his nemesis Superman is powerful, making Lex a worthy opponent for him, more than capable of gaining the upper hand against the mighty alien, despite his own lack of metahuman powers.
Still, Lex was ultimately a heroic, enlightening, and altruistic humanist, even comparing himself to humanity's savior Prometheus, since Lex does indeed actually firmly believe in the importance of bettering humankind to its peak, and Lex claims that he wants to "elevate the right people, the right human people" in order to "leave the planet in better shape for the next generation, to make the world and its children safer." Indeed, his LexCorp Industries mission statement is: "Let's build a better tomorrow today," while the specified one for Lex/Os is: "Help us build a more human system." Due to Batman epitomizing many of these humanist beliefs (having bettered himself both mentally and physically to his peak, without any superhuman assistance, making him capable of pulling off terrific feats without actually being superhuman), Lex genuinely admires him, despite Batman being his enemy and business rival, and Lex therefore selects the tremendously skilled vigilante to be his champion against Superman and the metahumans. Lex does not, however, view Batman as an equal, as he takes pride in his intellectual superiority, smugly proclaiming how easy it had been for him to deceive the vigilante into unknowingly becoming his pawn after he had awkwardly thrown aside his spear and agreed to help Superman. Lex appears to respect Deathstroke for similar reasons. Lex is phenomenally brilliant in sciences and business, as well as tactics and strategy (to the point that he boldly claims not to know how to lose), and is thereby practically always the smartest man in a room.
Lex is also incredibly brave, almost completely fearless, showing no signs of fear when confronted by an angry Superman, and even when unexpectedly ambushed in his Belle Reve supermax jail cell and at the mercy of a furious Batman with a branding ring (although Lex's sneer momentarily disappeared when Batman informed him about his transfer to Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane), with Lex going so far as smugly sneering at Batman's threats, gloating over Superman's death with gleeful sadism, and equally sadistically warning Batman about the imminent coming of a new, mysterious alien invader, Darkseid, to whom Earth is now vulnerable to, due to Superman's death, although he may have simply intended to do all in his current power to goad him into bringing superheroes together.
Lex does, however, have several prominent fears, the biggest of which, even more than that of losing his own life, being his fear of losing intellectual power and self-righteous control, so yet another factor of Lex's resentment towards Superman was his outrage over the latter not deserving his godlike power (a legitimate claim), while feeling that instead, he is the one that deserves it, due to Lex being a self-made man (amassing his supergenius intellect, building up LexCorp Industries, and earning himself a phenomenal fortune in a superhuman business feat) from a difficult and traumatic upbringing. Indeed, due to this existential sense of entitlement, Lex epitomizes the Easterlin Paradox - being absolutely tormented, miserable, and full of rage, despite also being tremendously rich and successful Therefore, Lex values control above all else, so much so, that he places himself above Superman, and almost asks Superman to tear him apart, in their first confrontation. Hence, when confronted with his greatest fear, Lex shows himself to be a fatalist, as he used Doomsday as his last-ditch effort to destroy his nemesis, although he knew the damage wrought in the Skirmish under Gotham Harbor was dwarfed by the Insurgency.
While Lex's god complex does occasionally make him arrogant and overconfident, this weakness of his (unlike with supervillains like Ares, Enchantress, General Zod, General Ludendorff, or Amanda Waller) is ultimately an insignificant one, as Lex's tremendous intellect and cold calculation allow him to very effectively compensate for this at almost all times, mastering almost any situation with his numerous tactical contingencies, and even though he does express a level of shock whenever one of his plans fail and he has to resort to one of his less ethical contingencies, he is very quick to recover from it. Hence, when Senator Finch unexpectedly refuses to grant Lex an import license for the Indian Ocean kryptonite, he promptly smuggles it in instead; when a guilt-ridden Kahina Ziri unexpectedly confesses her lies to Finch, Lex promptly has them both killed; when Batman and Superman unexpectedly stop their duel, team up and save Martha Kent, Lex promptly unleashes Doomsday upon them, killing Superman; when Lex's numerous unspeakable crimes get exposed and result in Belle Reve supermax imprisonment, Lex promptly makes himself unfit to stand trial by convincingly feigning insanity; and when Lex learns of his unexpected transfer to Arkham Asylum, he regains his confidence mere seconds later, due to Lex having adapted a contingency plan for a break-out from Arkham (and subsequent retreat to a contingency private yacht) at the optimal time. Even after Superman is resurrected from the dead more powerful than before and cements together the Justice League, Lex is as confident as ever in face of this greater challenge, and swiftly chooses this as the optimal time to escape Arkham, retreats to the contingency yacht, and meets up with Deathstroke to discuss founding "a league of [his] own", to continue to maintain balance according to his own judgement.
Hence overall, Lex Luthor is extremely unpredictable, as he often has numerous back-up plans to his back-up plans, accounting for numerous possible scenarios with efficient contingencies. Indeed, Lex's unparalleled ability to plan, strategize, restrategize, and break down his opponents grants him power that surpasses even that of Superman and metahumans, since Lex's ability to predict and gather information on his many opponents allows him to easily outstrategize any of them one-on-one, thereby making it almost impossible for them to succeed against Lex. As a result, Lex caught both Batman and Superman off-guard with the revelation of his endgame - Doomsday. Even Lex's personal assistant, confidant, and right-hand woman Mercy Graves, who knew him best, was ultimately not privy to all of Lex's master plans, and therefore was unable to correctly predict his future actions.
Much like his archenemy Superman, Lex has tremendous determination and strength of will, since he absolutely refuses to ever hunker down and give up, even when placed against seemingly insurmountable odds, with Lex mastering almost any situation with his numerous tactical contingencies, and even going so far as to claim that he doesn't know how to lose. Indeed, Lex even resolves to dominate in something as trivial as a bowling game with Ron Troupe. Hence, Lex managed to successfully transform his father's company, LexCorp Industries, from a petrochemical and heavy machinery dinosaur into a cutting-edge Fortune 500 technology giant (in a stupendous, what some call a superhuman, business feat), and being willing to use illegal operations to maintain the success of his oligarchical business empire. Later, despite the seemingly impossible task of bringing down the godlike Superman without having metahuman powers himself, Lex refuses to back down from it, and resolves to utilize his phenomenal intellect to devise complex and intricate plans to bring down his archenemy, along with back-up plans, and back-up plans to his back-up plans, for good measure, with Lex ultimately succeeding in defeating and killing Superman and preventing the Knightmare with his personal Frankensteinian creation Doomsday.
Lex carries out this self-righteous plan with cold calculation and ruthless cruelty, being quick to murder anyone who gets in his way, such as the militantly oppositional Senator Finch, his guilt-ridden pawn Kahina Ziri, his unsuspecting pawns Jimmy Olsen and Cesar Santos, his no longer useful pawns Senator Barrows and Wallace Keefe (along with the 66 other attendees of Superman's hearing), Amajagh's Nairomian soldiers, and even his own loyal assistant Mercy Graves is likewise shown to be disposable to Lex, as she is likewise killed off along with them. Lex even goes so far as to sadistically threaten to burn the kidnapped Martha Kent alive unless Superman "bows to [his] will" by killing Batman. This meticulous and brilliant plan behind Lex's ultimatum was to expose the theological problem of evil in Superman regardless of the fight's outcome - if Superman were to win and kill Batman (to save his mother's life) he would prove to be supremely powerful yet not supremely good, and if Superman were to lose (due to holding back and his weakness to kryptonite) to Batman and die, he would prove to be supremely good yet not supremely powerful.
In the meantime, Lex continues to better himself and accordingly gain more power, being quick to order the Fortress of Solitude to teach him all about the knowledge from 100,000 alien worlds, thereby expanding his already brilliant mind to supergenius level, finally becoming even more godlike in his own eyes. Despite the failure of his initial grand plan, Lex's far more grand and extreme contingency plan of unleashing Doomsday succeeds, with Superman seemingly being killed by the bloodthirsty monster. Indeed, Lex appears to be so satisfied with his success (as he claims not to know how to lose), that he cares little about being imprisoned for his numerous illegal deeds shortly thereafter, and gleefully awaits the imminent arrival of Darkseid.
Lex also has a somewhat dry, black, and sadistic sense of humor (similar to that of the Joker and General Ludendorff), and love for both witty puns and visual metaphors, shown when Lex mockingly imitated a Kentucky accent when speaking with Senator Finch; when Lex told the wheelchair-bound Wallace Keefe that he wanted to help the latter "stand" for something; when Lex claims that the shortest road to Superman is "Lois lane"; when Lex mentions "civilizations of the wane, manners out the window" to Batman (subtly revealing that he knows of Bruce Wayne being the Dark Knight's alter ego); when Lex had a jar of urine placed upon Senator Finch's desk, labelled "Granny's Peach Tea" (illustrating an epithet that she herself had used against him not along ago) before coldly murdering her with a hidden bomb; and when Lex described the upcoming battles between Superman and Batman, and later Superman and Doomsday with dramatic and sadistic glee, mockingly incorporating antique and theological metaphors (such as describing the first battle as the "greatest gladiator match in the history of the world"). In addition, Lex seems to be well-versed in American pop-culture, making quite a few references from it as well, notably "The Midnight Ride," "Alice in Wonderland," "Lolita" and the "Wizard of Oz." Following his incarceration in Belle Reve and the shaving of his head, Lex retained his sadism, but also paired it with a far more confident, cold and calculating attitude than before, in contrast to his previous darkly humorous persona.
- Genius-Level Intellect: Lex Luthor is a supergenius of phenomenally outstanding, wunderkind level intellect (famous for being a polymath and bibliophile with the highest level of mastery over numerous eclectic fields, making numerous eclectic references), quite possibly the most intelligent human being in the world, with his phenomenally eclectic intellect virtually unrivaled, with Lex standing out even among other geniuses (notably intellectually outclassing even a genius polymath like Batman, whom Lex outsmarted with ease, and with Lex referring to even the exceptionally smart and insightful Lois Lane as having a "little mind" compared to his) with his ability to master nearly any situation, usually against staggering odds, which makes the virtually peerless ambitious supergenius a worthy opponent even for Superman himself (despite his lack of metahuman powers), being as intelligent as Superman is powerful and far more intelligent than the latter despite Clark's own prolific intelligence inherited from his father Jor-El, the greatest scientific mind in all of Krypton, making him more than able to gain the upper hand over the superhero and eventually kill him. Hence, Lex was notably not deceived by Batman's inhuman and supernatural façade (being quick to deduce via CCTV that the Dark Knight is actually only a mere man without any metahuman powers) and Flash's momentum negation mirage (still capturing footage of the speedster's powers by accessing the pharmacy's security cameras), and was able to easily outsmart and keep tabs on not only Batman, but also Aquaman, the Flash, Cyborg, and Wonder Woman simultaneously (despite all of those metahumans, as Lex dubs them, attempting to maintain their secret identities with discreet power usage), with only Wonder Woman eventually figuring that out (due to having been tricked before by another deceitful supervillain, Ares), but even she did so too late, and was unable to figure it out fully. In addition, after entering the Fortress of Solitude, Lex orders to be taught the vast amounts of knowledge that the starship's archive had from 100,000 alien worlds, with apparent success. As such, Lex's already phenomenal intelligence became much greater than ever, effectively a supergenius, and he now has obtained tremendous amounts of knowledge regarding extraterrestrial beings, including that of the imminent threat posed by the New God invader Steppenwolf, coming to Earth (due to the Old Gods' and Superman's deaths having left the planet vulnerable), which Lex proclaims to Batman with glee. Lex's tremendously eclectic intellect extends itself to his unparalleled leadership, tactical, strategic, demagogic, deceptive, manipulative, detective, mathematical, scientific, engineering, computer science, computer programming, cryptographic, robotics, hacking, escapology, criminology, genetics, neuroscience, political science, literary, mythological, theological, exploitative networking, and oligarchical business skills, in addition to his phenomenal idiosyncratic wordplay skills with witty puns and malapropisms (allowing Lex to subtly reveal things he is aware of, with people only realizing it when he intends them to).
- Master Tactician: Lex Luthor, as a megalomaniac, is a phenomenally formidable tactical and strategic supergenius, to the point that he claims not to know how to lose. Given his lack of metahuman powers, Lex, much like Batman, often uses cunning and planning to successfully outwit stronger and more powerful foes, gaining leverage over them rather than simply out-fighting them, often using any of their exploitable weaknesses (such as kryptonite, Lois Lane, and Martha Kent in the case of Superman and manipulation-inducing tunnel vision in the case of Batman) to his advantage. Indeed, Lex's approach is shown to even far more effective, intricate, complex and ruthless than Batman's, with Lex always having back-up plans to his back-up plans, accounting for numerous possible scenarios with efficient contingencies, making him extraordinarily versatile and unpredictable to the point that his unparalleled ability to plan, strategize, restrategize, and break down his opponents grants him power that surpasses even that of Superman and metahumans, since Lex's ability to predict and gather information on his many opponents allows him to easily outstrategize any of them one-on-one, thereby making it almost impossible for them to succeed against Lex, with Lex almost always being flawlessly successful in the long-term (claiming not to know how to lose). Hence, even after his initial plan of having Senator Finch publicly support his kryptonite "silver bullet" deterrent against Superman (which would have forced the godlike alien to be subjugated and forced to answer to the deterrent-wielding government) fails, Lex is unfazed, and sets a grander contingency plan into motion by changing tactics - learning everything about both Batman and Superman. This allows Lex to successfully manipulate not only Superman into killing Batman (by having Cesar Santos murdered in jail, sending Clark photos of Santos' corpse, and finally, by kidnapping Clark's mother), but also to successfully outsmart and manipulate even the extremely experienced tactical genius Batman (with Lex notably even claiming that this was an easy feat for him) into killing Superman (by sending Bruce notes with provoking "red note" messages "from" Wallace Keefe about the death of his employees in the Black Zero Event, allowing Bruce to steal his data on kryptonite and metahumans, and later, to steal the kryptonite itself), without Batman ever suspecting it until after his duel with Superman was over. This meticulous and brilliant plan behind Lex's ultimatum was to expose the theological problem of evil in Superman regardless of the fight's outcome - if Superman were to win and kill Batman (to save his mother's life) he would prove to be supremely powerful yet not supremely good, and if Superman were to lose (due to holding back and his weakness to kryptonite) to Batman and die, he would prove to be supremely good yet not supremely powerful. And even when Lex's grand contingency plan of pitting both superheroes against each other ultimately fails (and that being only due to Superman saying Martha's name just in time to stop Batman's killing blow), a once again unfazed Lex reveals his far more grand and extreme second contingency plan (by promptly unleashing the mighty monster Doomsday), a plan that ultimately succeeds in carrying out Lex's goal of killing Superman, leaving Lex victorious. Furthermore, when Batman unexpectedly has Lex transferred from Belle Reve supermax to Arkham Asylum, Lex is yet again mostly unfazed, due to him having adapted a contingency plan for a break-out (and subsequent retreat to a contingency private yacht) at the optimal time. Even after Superman is resurrected from the dead more powerful than before and cements together the Justice League, Lex is as confident as ever in face of this greater challenge, and chooses this as the optimal time to escape Arkham, retreating to the contingency yacht, and meeting up with Deathstroke to discuss founding "a league of [his] own" as a contingency against the Justice League.
- Master Deceiver: Lex Luthor is phenomenally skilled in deception, outclassing even deceptive genius Batman himself in that regard, as he was, notably able to successfully hide his extremism under a kindly and altruistic façade, which was convincing enough to initially fool Wallace Keefe, Senator Barrows, the extremely perceptive Senator Finch, the insightful and brilliant reporters Superman and Lois Lane, and even the extremely experienced tactical and detective genius Batman, with none of them initially suspecting him to be hellbent on ending the Man of Steel. In addition, Lex deceived Amajagh and the entire CIA (by having Anatoli Knyazev and his men discreetly infiltrate the Nairomian warlord's ranks and incriminate Superman in the resulting bloodshed), was able to deceive the entire US Senate and general public (by having his discreetly hired manipulatee Kahina Ziri read the memorized deceitful script that Lex had written for her, while addressing the Senate and a live news reporter), was able to masterfully deceive Wallace Keefe into siding with him (by bribing him with a high-tech wheelchair and convincing him that he is a useful asset for Lex in changing the world's perception of Superman, while in fact he was a mere disposable pawn), was able to superbly deceive Wonder Woman, Aquaman, the Flash, and Cyborg (by successfully keeping discreet tabs on them without their knowledge, with only Wonder Woman figuring it out, but only when it was too late), was able to deceive the Fortress of Solitude's entrance into allowing him to pass (by posing as General Zod, using the fingerprints previously sliced off the latter's corpse), was able to mostly deceive the brilliant reporter Lois Lane (by leaving behind so few loose ends, that she was only able to identify him as the main supercriminal culprit behind Superman's framing after receiving some assistance from Jenet Klyburn and Secretary of Defense Swanwick, and even then she was unable to uncover his entire endgame, until it was too late), was able to masterfully deceive Superman into perceiving Batman as a threat and into angrily confronting the latter (by having Cesar Santos murdered in jail, and anonymously sending Clark photos of Santos' corpse), was able to superbly and easily deceive even the extremely experienced Batman himself into becoming his champion against Superman (by sending Bruce notes with provoking "red note" messages with "from" Wallace Keefe about the death of his employees in the Black Zero Event, by allowing Bruce to steal his data on kryptonite and metahumans, and later, by allowing him to steal the kryptonite itself, thereby convincing him that he genuinely, of his own accord, wished to kill Superman, while in fact he was a mere discreetly manipulated pawn), and was able to deceive even his personal assistant Mercy Graves, who knew him best, into getting killed (by having her attend Superman's hearing and convincing her that she is his right-hand woman and confidant, privy to all of his master plans, while in fact even she was a mere disposable liability). Lex's phenomenal deception supergenius was even effective following his imprisonment in Belle Reve supermax, as Lex very convincingly feigned insanity, thereby making himself unfit to stand trial for his numerous unspeakable crimes.
- Master Manipulator: Lex Luthor is a terrifyingly accomplished manipulator, even more skilled than Joker, as he was capable of steadily, with remarkable ease, turning Superman and Batman against one another by orchestrating several events capable of swiftly inciting their rage, with this ability also aiding Lex in gaining the many criminal allies that help him maintain the success of his oligarchical business empire.
- Master Detective: Lex Luthor, although applying this talent for malicious purposes, has proven himself to be an extraordinarily masterful detective, with him masterfully employing multiple extremely well-concealed means such as planting cctvs in arenas of interest as well as hacking to swiftly deduce the truth, notably being able to effortlessly see through Batman's nearly inhuman façade regarding him being supernatural, deducing correctly that the latter was actually a mere man without any metahuman powers, in addition to Lex accurately discerning that Batman, despite his continued heroism, has in fact been emotionally darkened and embittered over all that he had witnessed in his many years of fighting crime in Gotham City, which Lex very masterfully used to his own advantage to easily get him to take action against Superman. Indeed, Lex's outstanding detective prowess enabled him to swiftly become one of the extreme few individuals to know not only Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and Flash's secret identities (the first one to know the secret identities of the entire future Justice League), but also the first to learn practically everything about both Batman and Superman (notably their powers, abilities, physical and emotional weaknesses, relationships, and psychological profiles), which allowed Lex to discreetly outwit, manipulate, and gain the upper hand against both superheroes with ease.
- Master Escapologist: Lex Luthor, to a level that could easily put him on par with, if not superior to, Joker, is exceptionally skilled at escaping unscathed in highly unlikely situations, with him notably somehow escaping from a straight-jacket in Arkham Asylum (covertly leaving another bald inmate in his place), and from the asylum itself without anyone noticing until it was too late, and despite Batman having promised to keep constant surveillance on Lex, with Lex having enough of a head-start to comfortably retreat to a private yacht.
- Master Demagogue: Lex Luthor is a superbly skilled demagogic supergenius (more so than even Batman or Amanda Waller and comparable to Ares), as his intention is to come off as an altruistic humanist of and for the people (with Lex comparing himself to the enlightening gift-giving figure of Prometheus), so he therefore masterfully appeals to popular desires and prejudices when addressing people, often championing the cause of the common (non-metahuman) people, with his usage of seemingly rational arguments making Lex's method even more effective. Indeed, his LexCorp Industries mission statement is: "Let's build a better tomorrow today," while the specified one for Lex/Os is: "Help us build a more human system." Lex's most notable demagogic demonstrations were when he both spearheaded prolific philanthropic efforts to rebuild Metropolis and stressed that recognizing the importance of the "ordinary" non-metahuman heroes of the city (such as the countless citizens who also helped save others during the Black Zero Event) had become more important than ever in light of Superman's debut (all of which inspired Kord Industries and other corporations to follow his example, and even made many people think of Lex Luthor as being as much a hero to Metropolis as Superman himself), when Lex easily manipulates Senator Barrows into giving high-level clearance (to both the Fortress of Solitude and General Zod's corpse) without the latter even uttering verbal consent, and when Lex attempts to manipulate Senator Finch into utilizing kryptonite as a deterrent against Superman (by attempting to appeal to a fear of merely having to depend upon "the kindness" of Superman, who could potentially become a "monster"). It should be noted that Lex failed only with Finch, and only because the latter had been both a long-term adamant supporter of Superman and exceptionally perceptive. When openly discussing his motives with fellow supervillains, Lex is no less eloquent and persuasive.
- Master Social Intuit: Lex Luthor, as a very outspoken humanist, has an incredible degree of social confidence and mastery in intuitively determining how to interact with others, gain their respect and get his point across with a calmness, eloquence, and charisma that belie his actual emotional state. Hence, Lex diplomatically greeted Clark Kent (despite his incredible misotheistic hatred for the latter and plot to get him killed) and Bruce Wayne (despite Batman being his enemy and business rival) upon first meeting them, remaining friendly even in the face of their wariness of him, diplomatically stated his hopes and ambitions in an interview with Ron Troupe (casually remaining unfazed by the latter's somewhat provocative questions), quickly appealed to the bitter Wallace Keefe, ignoring the latter's initial vulgar insults (despite merely desiring to use him as a disposable pawn), effortlessly maintained his diplomatic poise when being bombarded by a crowd of reporters (despite their several attempts to provoke Lex and get a rise out of him) to which Mercy Graves would commend him for having "handled it perfectly" (with Lex notably even claiming to her that there was "nothing to handle"), and cordially greeted Senators Finch and Barrows upon first meeting them and eloquently addressed them in his demagogic anti-Superman pitch (despite purely wanting to exploit them to facilitate his own machinations and the mere idea of the alien superhero being sufficient enough to enrage him) to the point that Senator Barrows became visibly intrigued by Lex and even stayed behind, intent to continue a further discussion and come to a mutual agreement with him. Even in the only two known instances when Lex makes a slight social blunder (by temporarily going into a rage when faced with Senator Finch's dissaproval, and later on being unable to improvise a captivating fundraiser speech on the spot), (the former being due to the suddenness of the Senator's disapproval surprising Lex and the latter being due to sadistic glee at all the pieces of his grand plan finally beginning to fall together), despite his feelings of dismay at both occasions, having nearly contradicted his own ideology with a paradoxical statement in the second occasion, Lex swiftly regains control of the awkward and tense situation by casually, even if tauntingly and antagonistically, leveling with Finch despite being faced with the fact that she knew his illegal actions and fixing the minor mistakes he made with his fundraiser speech with only a few words and in a matter of moments before politely excusing himself from the stage, which completely covered up his mistake and earned applause from his guests. Only when finally confronted by Superman does Lex not hold himself back in conversation for the first time, passionately expressing his immense misotheistic hatred for the alien superhero, and everything the latter represents to him. As a result, Lex remains extremely well-respected not only by his LexCorp Industries employees (especially Mercy Graves) and criminal allies, but (right up until Lois Lane exposes his supervillainous actions) even by most politicians and the general public. Following his incarceration in Belle Reve and the shaving of his head, Lex retained his social confidence and wit, remaining as effective as ever even when paired with a far more confident, cold and calculating attitude, in contrast to his previous darkly humorous persona, thus diplomatically welcoming the somewhat aloof and irascible Deathstroke aboard his private yacht, politely offering the latter a beverage while ignoring his initially cold and distasteful remarks, instead proceeding to calmly appeal to the assassin with an interesting proposition, thus managing to successfully and swiftly capture Deathstroke's undivided attention.
- Master Word-Player: Lex Luthor, as a megalomaniac, is phenomenally skilled with wordplay to the point that he has the idiosyncratic ability to reveal things that he is aware of so subtly that even the most intelligent individuals could only realize what he means if he wants them to, with Lex being able to openly and smugly flaunt his knowledge to their faces while hiding the true meanings so well so as to make even people as perceptive as Batman and Senator Finch ignorant, with Lex employing witty, occasionally transpositional, puns, malapropisms, discreet black humor, and layered pop-culture references.
- Master Mathematician: Lex Luthor is a phenomenally skilled supergenius mathematician being able to pick up on patterns almost all others do not notice, having a penchant to make even something as casual as sports scores sound like algebraic integers, and being able to casually tie mathematical references into conversations while remaining relevant, such as with Euclid's triangle inequality in relation to Lois Lane and Superman.
- Master Scientist: Lex Luthor is an extraordinarily brilliant supergenius scientist, phenomenally skilled and knowledgeable in a vast array of scientific fields (including physics, chemistry, biology, genetics, neuroscience, computer science, psychology, and many others), even more so after absorbing new knowledge from the Fortress of Solitude's Kryptonian archives (of 100,000 alien worlds), which allowed him to correctly postulate the "Metahuman Thesis," to discover and re-purpose kryptonite as one of the few things capable of harming the Kryptonian Superman, to reverse-engineer an extremely futuristic and advanced Kryptonian Genesis Chamber from the one in the Fortress, and then successfully modify the alien corpse of General Zod into the monstrous Doomsday with his own blood, and to understand the extremely powerful and futuristic Mother Boxes' function without actually observing them (subsequently making many detailed coded notes about them and the Unity, which even Batman and Alfred proved incapable of understanding).
- Master Engineer: Lex Luthor is a phenomenally brilliant and prolific supergenius engineer, computer scientist, computer programmer, cryptographer and robotics technician, a wunderkind prodigy as a child, even more so after absorbing new knowledge from the Fortress of Solitude's Kryptonian archives (of 100,000 alien worlds), since his company, LexCorp Industries is the world's premiere one in high-technology defense innovation (far surpassing Wayne Enterprises, Kord Industries, Stagg Industries, Queen Industries, and Geschäft-Krieg), specializing in new disruptive technologies, notably creating the revolutionary new operating system Lex/OS (the world's first neural network-based operating system), the innovative alloy bullets he provided Anatoli Knyazev with, and the high-tech lead-encased wheelchair he provided Wallace Keefe with, which allowed the bomb inside it to remain undetected even to Superman, and also able to fully understand how to utilize extremely futuristic and sophisticated Kryptonian technology (centuries more advanced than that of Earth), and even managing to successfully integrate it with his own LexCorp technology and scientific apparatus before starting the procedure of reverse-engineering the Genesis Chamber and creating Doomsday.
- Master Hacker: Lex Luthor, as a prolific computer scientist and programmer, is an immensely formidable supergenius hacker, cryptographer and cybercriminal, notable for his phenomenal skills of intelligence gathering, and data interpretation, his ability to hack into most computer systems without tripping any firewalls or security, as well as his superb pattern recognition and analysis skills, with Lex therefore being able to pick up on patterns others do not notice. Hence, Lex was able to easily hack into several Gotham City CCTVs (successfully catching shots of Batman in action, despite the latter's immense stealth skills), into a Central City pharmacy's security camera (successfully catching shots of the Flash's supersonic speed), into several high-clearance NSA UUV drones in the Pacific Ocean (successfully recording Aquaman, despite the Atlantean's attempts to destroy the drones with his trident, and avoid them, with his tremendous swimming speed), into the CIA database (learning of the CIA's intention to have Jimmy Olsen infiltrate Amajagh's Nairomian forces via Lois Lane's credentials), into the highly classified S.T.A.R. Labs video log of Dr. Silas Stone (successfully capturing footage of Cyborg's enhancement by a top-secret Apokoliptan Mother Box), and also into high-clearance government facial recognition software (successfully managing to determine that the Amazon demigoddess Wonder Woman from an old World War I photo with Steve Trevor's team, is in fact still alive as the Louvre Museum antiquities curator "Diana Prince," and also learning the secret identities of both Batman and Superman). Hence, Lex swiftly becomes one of the extreme few individuals to know not only Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and Flash's secret identities (the first one to know the secret identities of the entire future Justice League), but also the first to learn practically everything about both Batman and Superman (notably their powers, abilities, physical and emotional weaknesses, relationships, and psychological profiles), which allowed Lex to discreetly outwit, manipulate, and gain the upper hand against both superheroes with ease.
- Master Cryptographer: Lex Luthor is a phenomenally skilled cryptographer supergenius, since despite being so excited upon learning about the Mother Boxes and their Unity that he would write multiple detailed notes about them, he coded his writings so efficiently that even the extremely experienced Batman and Alfred were completely unable to decipher them until learning additional Mother Box lore from Wonder Woman.
- Master Businessman: Lex Luthor is a phenomenally brilliant, supergenius oligarchical businessman, a wunderkind prodigy, easily the best currently alive in the world, managing to successfully transform his father's company, LexCorp Industries, from a petrochemical and heavy machinery dinosaur into a cutting-edge Fortune 500 technology giant (in a stupendous, what some call a superhuman, business feat), allowing the company to grow to massive heights and gain numerous business partners (notably quickly absorbing Hanford Technologies), which gives him a tremendous amount of oligarchical influence and respect in the business world, in addition to Lex being able to considerably expand the already massive wealth inherited by him from his father to phenomenal levels that makes him quite possibly the wealthiest man in the world ($ 2 billion), to the point where his company easily surpasses even the likes of Bruce Wayne's company, Wayne Enterprises ($97 million), along with Kord Industries's $707 million, Stagg Industries's ($628 million, Queen Industries's ($210 million), and Geschäft-Krieg's $171 million in terms of wealth, R&D budget and in the field of military defense contracts, making LexCorp the world's premiere company in high-technology defense innovation and the largest tech conglomerate in the world. In fact, the astonishingly prolific genius accomplishments of Lex far surpassed even the genius business achievements of his father Alexander Luthor Sr. (which were very considerable in their own right). Unlike Bruce Wayne however, Lex is not above and is extremely skilled in secretly using ruthless cutthroat tactics, unethical practices and illegal operations (with his ties to criminal underworlds) to maintain the success of his oligarchical business empire, fooling all about his usage of dirty ethics. Indeed, Perry White feared that if threatened by Lois Lane through the press, Lex could sue the Daily Planet "out of existence" with his tremendous funds.
- Master Leader: Lex Luthor is a phenomenally skilled and brilliantly talented leader, a wunderkind prodigy, having been able to spearhead LexCorp Industries with consistently tremendous effectiveness that eventually led to it being the most prominent company in the world, having the most amount of contracts even compared to the also extremely illustrious Wayne Enterprises, Kord Industries, Stagg Industries, Queen Industries and Geschäft-Krieg, and inspire complete loyalty in both his criminal allies and company employees to the point that they were more than willing to risk themselves against not only the law but also individuals as powerful as Batman and Superman and lead them from the shadows completely unnoticed while efficiently coordinating their efforts to perform anonymous acts. After breaking out of Arkham Asylum, Lex is confident in his ability to bring together and lead "a league of [his] own" against Superman and the Justice League.
- Master Literarian: Lex Luthor, as a famous bibliophile, has an encyclopedic knowledge of literary works, possessing vast quantities of books in his own private study, with him being particularly well-versed in American pop-culture, notably hosting a fundraiser for the Metropolis Public Library, his knowledge of the works of the library being acknowledged to the point of being famously recognized as a true friend of said library, and making numerous layered references to various books in conversation, including "The Midnight Ride," "Alice in Wonderland," "Lolita" and the "Wizard of Oz."
- Master Theologian and Mythologist: Lex Luthor, despite being a militant misotheist, has an encyclopedic knowledge of both pagan (particularly Egyptian and Greco-Roman) and biblical creeds, myths, and theology, as he is able to fully understand how metahumans are the basis of many pagan myths (with Enchantress and Incubus notably inspiring the pagan myths of the ancient Pre-Columbian Maya and Incas), and he is also proficient in implementing allusions to major figures of those theologies, which he has consistently proven to have a penchant for, having compared himself to Prometheus and even the biblical God in one way, claiming to hate "the sin, not the sinner," and plays God by creating the monster Doomsday, General Zod to Icarus, commenting that the latter flew too close to the sun, and Superman to Zeus, Horus, Apollo, Jehovah, and Satan, in the face of his god-like powers. In addition to making these allusions, Lex is also able to convincingly cast these theologies' supreme gods in a not very discreet negative light (masterfully finding the right myths for that, as he did with Zeus' punishment of Prometheus), to the point that his incorporation of the latter's myth was praised by his guests and even made the usually calm Wonder Woman visibly enraged by Lex's description of Zeus and the Old Gods.
- Master Political Scientist: Lex Luthor, as an oligarchical supergenius businessman, has a phenomenal understanding of political science, such as the inner workings and intended goals of both political structures and intelligence agencies - notably the US government (whose Senate Lex easily deceived and manipulated), ARGUS (fully understanding the motives and structure of Amanda Waller's Suicide Squad pitch to the Pentagon ), and the CIA (whose covert Nairomian operation, with Jimmy Olsen, Lex easily thwarted without detection). Hence, Lex fully understood the paradigm shift that the goals of modern politics took after the emergence of Superman and metahumans, with him masterfully using this to his own benefit, by openly addressing the newfound political concerns in a demagogic speech when meeting Senators Finch and Barrows, and then effortlessly manipulating Barrows into granting him high-clearance. Indeed, Ron Troupe would go so far as to say that Lex's ideology of humanism makes the latter sound like someone running for political office.
- Master Networker: Lex Luthor, as a supergenius manipulator, deceiver, and oligarch, uses a vastly dense network of professional and social contacts to further both his business and supervillain ambitions with outstanding skill. This is notable through his influence of prominent politicians (like Senator Barrows), other supervillains (like Deathstroke), other powerful companies (like Kord Industries), powerful intelligence agencies (like ARGUS, the CIA, FBI, and NSA), and formidable criminal underworlds (like Anatoli Knyazev and his men), as well as his many covert moles and pawns in various places (like Teri, Wallace Keefe, Cesar Santos, Jimmy Olsen, Kahina Ziri, Mercy Graves, and Batman) that do Lex's benevolent bidding for him, sometimes unknowingly. Hence, Lex is able to discreetly keep tabs on numerous people and things that interest him, was able to illegally smuggle in a kryptonite nugget into the United States of America (to a LexCorp facility), and have Blackgate Penitentiary inmates murder Cesar Santos in prison, without any of it getting tied to Lex. Indeed, even when imprisoned in Belle Reve supermax, and later Arkham Asylum, Lex remains confident in his vast network and indeed he managed to orchestrate his escape from Arkham Asylum by having one of his associates replace him and then quickly contact Deathstroke, offering him some extremely expensive Goût de Diamants.
- Master Criminologist: Lex Luthor, quite ironically, is a phenomenally skilled and knowledgeable criminologist, outclassing even Batman himself in that regard, since he was able to quickly gain tremendous insight into and understanding of Gotham City's criminals and their mindsets that rivaled, if not, surpassed that of Batman only a while after becoming interested in their activities to research more on Batman, easily understanding how Batman consistently overpowers and undermines their operations. Hence, Lex was able to keep his own supercriminal status covert so superbly that even Batman had no knowledge of it, despite having knew of his shady alliance with Anatoli Knyazev, until learning it from Superman, was able to maintain such strong ties to the criminal underworld so as to successfully use said connections to maintain the extraordinary success of his oligarchical business empire and was able to easily orchestrate multiple criminal acts without having any of it tied back to Lex, such as the death of Cesar Santos in Blackgate Penitentiary at the hands of the latter's fellow inmates.
- Eidetic Memory: Lex Luthor, as a supergenius, has a photographic memory and perfect recall, which greatly aided him in mastering a vast array of eclectic fields to the highest level as a polymath, while also allowing him to make numerous layered references (to pop-culture, to biblical and pagan theology, to mathematics, to computer science, to famous books, and etc.), and to know seemingly random facts, such as the scores of recent basketball games.
- Skilled Basketballer: Lex Luthor, despite his relatively short stature, is a highly accomplished basketballer, easily scoring while in his personal LexCorp basketball court, and he apparently fancies the sport and has great knowledge of it in general, quoting the score of a recent (Metros vs Guardsmen) basketball game while interviewed by Ron Troupe.
- Skilled Bowler: Lex Luthor is a highly skilled bowler, confident in his ability to "destroy" Ron Troupe in a game.
- Indomitable Will: Lex Luthor, much like his archenemy Superman, has tremendous determination, fearlessness, and strength of will, since he absolutely refuses to ever hunker down and give up, even when placed against seemingly insurmountable odds, with Lex mastering almost any situation with his numerous tactical contingencies, and even going so far as to claim that he doesn't know how to lose. Indeed, Lex even resolves to dominate in something as trivial as a bowling game with Ron Troupe. Hence, Lex managed to successfully transform his father's company, LexCorp Industries, from a petrochemical and heavy machinery dinosaur into a cutting-edge Fortune 500 technology giant (in a stupendous, what some call a superhuman, business feat), and being willing to use illegal operations to maintain the success of his oligarchical business empire. Later, despite the seemingly impossible task of bringing down the godlike Superman without having metahuman powers himself, Lex refuses to back down from it, and resolves to utilize his phenomenal intellect to devise complex and intricate plans to bring down his archenemy, along with back-up plans, and back-up plans to his back-up plans, for good measure, with Lex ultimately succeeding in defeating and killing Superman with his personal creation Doomsday. Indeed, Lex remains fearless and incredibly resolute even while imprisoned in Belle Reve supermax, and confronted in his cell by Batman, only showing unease at the news of being transferred to Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane, but nonetheless swiftly regaining his confidence mere seconds later even then, due to Lex having adapted a contingency plan for a break-out from Arkham (and subsequent retreat to a contingency private yacht) at the optimal time. Even after Superman is resurrected from the dead more powerful than before and cements together the Justice League, Lex is as confident as ever in face of this greater challenge, and swiftly chooses this as the optimal time to escape Arkham, retreats to the contingency yacht, and meets up with Deathstroke to discuss founding "a league of [his] own."
- Arrogance: Lex Luthor's primary weakness is his overconfidence and arrogance (stemming from his megalomania and god complex), with him even going so far as to claim that he doesn't know how to lose. Hence, Lex does express some surprise, left temporarily caught off-guard, when an unexpected turn of events causes his plans to not work out the way he intended and he is forced to resort to one of his contingency plans. However (unlike with supervillains like Ares, Enchantress, General Ludendorff, or Amanda Waller), this weakness of his is ultimately an insignificant one, as Lex's tremendous intellect and cold calculation allow him to very effectively compensate for this at almost all times, mastering almost any situation with his numerous tactical contingencies, and he is quick to recover and seamlessly use his contingencies to make up for it. Hence, when Senator Finch unexpectedly refuses to grant Lex an import license for the Indian Ocean kryptonite, he promptly smuggles it in instead; when a guilt-ridden Kahina Ziri unexpectedly confesses her lies to Finch, Lex promptly has them both killed; when Batman and Superman unexpectedly stop their duel, team up and save Martha Kent, Lex promptly unleashes Doomsday upon them, killing Superman; when Lex's numerous unspeakable crimes get exposed and result in both Belle Reve supermax imprisonment and the possibility of execution, Lex promptly makes himself unfit to stand trial by convincingly feigning insanity; and when he learns of his unexpected transfer to Arkham Asylum, Lex regains his confidence mere seconds later, due to Lex having adapted a contingency plan for a break-out from Arkham at the optimal time - indeed, Lex chooses to break out of Arkham after Superman's resurrection and the establishment of the Justice League.
As the CEO of LexCorp Industries, which under his leadership has become the world's largest tech conglomerate, Lex Luthor has earned himself a phenomenally large fortune (considerably expanding upon that which he has inherited from his father, Alexander Luthor Sr.), his wealth being that of $2 billion, vastly surpassing even the wealth of the other five tech conglomerates on the list of the six highest tech conglomerates in the world, such as his business rival Bruce Wayne and the Queen Industries CEO, with Lex renting the opulent Royal Penthouse Suite at the Park Metropolis Downtown (with 11 lavish bedrooms, each with its own floor-to-ceiling Italian marble bath, a 100-seat cinema/lecture hall, a four-lane bowling alley, twin helipads and its own private Caffè Bene) just for his 15-minute interview with Ron Troupe, greatly financially contributing to the post-Black Zero Event rebuilding of Metropolis (naming the new Lexor Hotel after himself in the process), and with Perry White fearing that if threatened by Lois Lane through the press, Lex could sue the Daily Planet "out of existence" with his tremendous funds. Also, his inheritance and wealth allows Lex access to the most sophisticated technology in the world and many innovative and futuristic useful equipment, one of which included a high-tech wheelchair that he easily bribed Wallace Keefe with. These resources, along with his immensely formidable hacking (enough to discreetly learn classified secrets from the CIA, FBI, NSA, DARPA, ARGUS, and S.T.A.R. Labs databases) and exploitative networking skills (enough to influence prominent politicians, other powerful companies, intelligence agencies, and criminal underworlds), allow Lex to be extremely well-informed in regards to individuals (be they human, metahuman, or otherworldly) who could potentially pose a threat to him (allowing Lex to keep discreet tabs on all of the future Justice League members, among others), along with Lex's knowledge of many, classified, global security secrets. Hence, Lex is one of the extreme few to know the secret identities of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg, and the Flash, being one of the extreme few to know of Amanda Waller's Suicide Squad idea before it's implementation, and also being the first known human on Earth to learn the Fortress of Solitude's knowledge of 100,000 alien worlds (thus learning of Doomsday, of Steppenwolf's imminent invasion, and of the Unity). Despite having not yet regained control of LexCorp Industries following his escape from Arkham Asylum, Lex has apparently put some money in off-shore accounts beforehand, enough to comfortably retreat to a private yacht, with a group of female bodyguards.
- Yacht: An opulent private yacht, equipped with a swimming pool and a group of female bodyguards. Lex boards it after escaping from Arkham Asylum, and meets with Deathstroke in it.
- Kryptonite: A glowing green radioactive xenomineral from the planet of Krypton, discovered in the Indian Ocean, a side effect of the World Engine's attack. As kryptonite is the greatest weakness of all Kryptonians, Lex effectively wields it against them, with him using it to peel off the fingerprints from General Zod's corpse. It is later stolen and weaponized by Batman (turned into the kryptonite spear), just as Lex had intended.
- Kryptonite scalpel: An innovative extremely sharp bladed instrument, with a blade of kryptonite xenomineral, capable of cutting right through Kryptonians, with Lex using it to peel off the fingerprints from General Zod's corpse, so as the enter the Fortress of Solitude.
- Wheelchair: A fancy high-tech chair with wheels, capable of quick rotation, with Lex using it to easily bribe Wallace Keefe into testifying against Superman. As noted by Jenet Klyburn, the wheelchair was composed of the same innovative unknown metal alloy as the LexCorp bullets, while its interior was lined with lead (so as to render the bomb concealed within invisible to Superman's X-ray vision).
- Innovative alloy bullets: Sophisticated high-caliber bullets, produced by LexCorp Industries, and supplied to Anatoli Knyazev and his men by Lex, used by them in Nairomi. As noted by Jenet Klyburn, they are composed of an unknown innovative metal aloy.
- Lex/OS: Revolutionary new high-speed computer operating system developed by LexCorp (it's mission statement being: "Help us build a more human system"), the world's first neural network-based operating system, capable of gradually becoming more and more intelligent each time human beta testers volunteer.
- CCTVs: Many video cameras that Lex has a penchant for setting up in locations of interest, in order to watch events unfold from within his private room in the LexCorp facility. He has thus successfully spied on Batman, Professor Garcia's footage of Superman, research on the corpse of General Zod, as well as the Fortress of Solitude. He is later revealed to have also successfully spied and kept tabs on the Amazon demigoddess Wonder Woman, the Atlantean Aquaman, the speedster Flash, and the mechanically-enhanced Cyborg, with Lex dubbing them all "metahumans."
- Lex coined the terms "metahuman" and "kryptonite".
- Lex, Superman, Deathstroke, and Shazam share the same middle name: "Joseph."
- Lex was listed as the youngest person ever to be named Fortune's Businessperson of the Year and included on the magazine's list of the World's 50 Greatest Leaders in the since-deleted Fortune article, "Lex Luthor Jr.: Not Just His Father’s LexCorp".
- Justice League showed Lex Luthor recruit Deathstroke to join a version of the Injustice League/Legion of Doom to take down the champions of Earth.
Behind the scenes
- This version of Lex Luthor is inspired by the comics Adventure Comics #271 and Superman: Birthright as well as real life Silicon Valley CEOs.
- When initially imprisoned in Belle Reve, Lex is given the designation "AC 23 1940". This appears to be a reference to the 23rd issue of the Action Comics comic series which came out in 1940. This issue was noteworthy for, among others, being the first chronological appearance of Lex Luthor.
- Lex is 31 in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, four years younger than Superman, when in most forms of media, he is either slightly or much older than Superman.
- Before Jesse Eisenberg was casted as Lex Luthor, Tom Hanks were in early talks for the role of Lex Luthor. Later on Matt Damon, Bradley Cooper, Joaquin Phoenix, Adam Driver and Jean Dujardin were on the final shortlist for the role.
- According to Zack Snyder, they discussed the possibility for Lex Luthor to play a part in saving the Earth from Darkseid in a planned third Justice League film. His role would have involved him sacrificing himself to detonate a nuclear bomb within Darkseid's spaceship.
- Jesse Eisenberg was uncredited for his appearance in Justice League.
- Lex Luthor in the DC Extended Universe is the seventh live-action incarnation of the character, following incarnations portrayed by Lyle Talbot, Gene Hackman, Scott James Wells, Sherman Howard, John Shea, Michael Rosenbaum, and Kevin Spacey.
- In July 2019, Jesse Eisenberg confirmed that he is "done" playing Lex Luthor, Eisenberg stated, "Do I have anything left on the table? No, never. No. But I loved it. I mean, I loved every moment of it. It was great. I would not have thought of myself for it. So, to me, it was all, like, house money I would call it."
- T. Ryan Mooney was a stunt double for Jesse Eisenberg in the role of Lex Luthor.
- Wallace, Daniel (February 16, 2016). Time Out Shortlist Gotham and Metropolis (Metropolis). United States: Time Out Group. p. 45.
- Excerpts from "Lex Luthor Jr.: Not Just His Father’s LexCorp". Forbes (October 5, 2015).
- Goyer, David S., Terrio, Chris (writers) & Snyder, Zack (director) (March 25, 2016). Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
- "Lexical Analysis" - WIRED
- Man of Steel
- Kogge, Michael (February 16, 2016). Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Cross Fire. United States: Scholastic.
- Gage, Christos (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Parsons, Sean (i), Hi-Fi (col), Bennett, Deron (let) & Antone, Alex (ed). "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Lois Lane" Warner Bros. Pictures Presents Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice #2: (January 2016), Burbank, CA: DC Comics
- "Metropolis" - Turkish Airlines
- Gage, Christos (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Parsons, Sean (i), Hi-Fi (col), Bennett, Deron (let) & Antone, Alex (ed). "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Lex Luthor" Warner Bros. Pictures Presents Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice #5: (January 2016), Burbank, CA: DC Comics
- Gage, Christos (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Parsons, Sean (i), Hi-Fi (col), Bennett, Deron (let) & Antone, Alex (ed). "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Superman" Warner Bros. Pictures Presents Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice #4: (January 2016), Burbank, CA: DC Comics
- Gage, Christos (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Parsons, Sean (i), Hi-Fi (col), Bennett, Deron (let) & Antone, Alex (ed). "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Batman" Warner Bros. Pictures Presents Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice #1: (January 2016), Burbank, CA: DC Comics
- Terrio, Chris, Beall, Will (writers) & Snyder, Zack (writer and director) (March 18, 2021). Zack Snyder's Justice League.
- Terrio, Chris, Beall, Will (writers) & Snyder, Zack (writer and director) (March 18, 2021). Zack Snyder's Justice League.
- "The Empire of Luthor - Batman vs Superman" - YouTube
- "50 – Endgame" - Man of Steel Answers Insight Commentary
- "“Batman V Superman” launch viral LexCorp Website" - The Action Pixel
- "Everything That All 5 Chapters of the Prequel Comic Taught Us About the World of Batman v Superman" - Outer Places
- [| DC_Cinematic Interview and Fan Q&A with Zack Snyder]
Alexander Luthor Sr.
|CEO of LexCorp Industries