Admiral Buzzkill wrote:
I hate Real Estate Luthor as well. I've always wondered if on some level it wasn't intentional parody of "Build A Giant Robot To Rob Banks Luthor" from the old comics - a supposed world-class genius whose ambitions were laughably picayune.
Byrne's rethinking of the character as a narcissist who used his extraordinary gifts to make himself incredibly wealthy, successful and effectively beyond the reach of the law most of the time has always seemed the most credible version and remains my favorite.
Had Hollywood accounting not derailed Superman Returns
, we could have seen Real Estate Lex become Corporate Executive Lex, since he's already swindled an old lady out of her money and company, and would be presumably wealthy enough to hide and start his own corporation (or simply rename Vanderworth Corporation Lexcorp) as well as afford a lawyer or two to get himself off (it would be hard to prove Lex had anything to do with the power disruptions and minor quakes.) With his brains, Luthor could invent a ton of stuff that would make him wealthy and liked, enough of course to still go after Superman 'because'.