- Series: Lex Luthor
- Paperback: 128 pages
- Publisher: Titan Books Ltd (February 24, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1845762118
- ISBN-13: 978-1845762117
- Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 10.1 x 0.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 59 customer reviews
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Lex Luthor: Man of Steel (Lex Luthor) Paperback – Import, February 24, 2006
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From School Library Journal
Grade 10 Up–This fresh treatment of an old relationship is squarely in the tradition of sophisticated alternate treatments of classic heroes. Lex Luthor finds Superman's alien preternatural calm and taciturn manner so irritating that he creates his own superhero. Hope, his glamorous new superprotégée, has the personality and media savvy that Superman never will. Lex hires a local pedophile supervillain, the Toyman, to carry out a day-care bombing and intends for Hope to achieve a public triumph by catching and murdering him. But as all comics readers know, the rule of law must always win out over vigilante justice. Here Bruce Wayne, Batman, is nothing but a wealthy industrialist, part of the corporate Gotham world, while Superman stays away from the bright lights. Bermejo's sleek coloring and line design maintain DC's high standards. Superman appears angrier and without the ludicrous muscles he often sports; Bruce Wayne is roguish instead of his usual polished self. Clearly for older readers for its moral questioning, this title deserves a home in libraries looking for brainy and subtle superhero reads.–John Leighton, Brooklyn Public Library, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Capitalizing on the success of the same team’s 2008 Joker graphic novel, DC has collected and added new pages to a 2005 miniseries that similarly explores Superman’s megalomaniacal nemesis. Azzarello (100 Bullets) paints a complex portrait of the villain as a committed humanist with a fiend lurking beneath, born of his pride in human achievement. This pride, naturally enough, is mortally offended by the godlike alien flying around Metropolis, so Luthor hatches a plan to shake the city’s faith in the hero, which ultimately requires a heartbreaking sacrifice from the villain himself. Creating a character who uses his influence to offer great opportunities to even his most menial employee and at the same time is prepared to bomb a day-care center full of children is not an easy task. It is masterfully abetted, however, by the harsh realism of Bermejo’s art, which, with the subtle shifting of shadow or a slight tilt of angle, can turn a supervillain into a human being and a superhuman savior into an alien monster. --Jesse Karp --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
As the title implies, this story arc is told through the eyes of Lex Luthor, and delves into the nature of why he hates Superman, and the reasoning is surprisingly sound. This Luthor is depicted as, while not necessarily sympathetic, certainly less malicious than his reputation is known for. Azzarello pens the dialogue and narration well, providing character-appropriate dialogue and a deep narrative. There are sveral small points of ambiguity within this collection, most of which is eventually revealed by the conclusion. However, there is one particular chapter, in which Batman and Superman clash over the former's possession of some Kryptonite. The reason the two were fighting is never completely made clear, which fits with the rest of the story, depicting heroes as villains in Lex's eye, but it felt a bit off. Superman has GIVEN Batman Kryptonite in the past, so his behavior made me scratch my head a bit. With that aside, however, this story was easy to become immersed in, and nothing was dragged out for an 'ultimate showdown' finale. This is an atypical super-hero story, so expect a unique read.
Bermejo's art is outstanding. It is hyper-realistic like Alex Ross', but gritty and slightly twisted. He was the perfect artist for this project. His style is not your normal comic-book penciler, which is most appropriate for Luthor. His Luthor is softer in appearance, in a similar way that his Superman is frightening and imposing, accentuating his alien heritage. His work invokes emotion, and I can ask for nothing else from an artist.
To conclude, this is a must for comic book fans. This is an important tale to read for both Superman and Luthor. Neither character is depicted as an extreme, which gives depth to both titans. At $7, I cannot think of a better choice of book.
So to recap, the book is great and the the art is even better. I do have one disclaimer, however, if your a Superman purist I would borrow the book from a friend, instead of buying, as it may not be to your liking. And that is okay, nothing against that point of view. We enjoy the writing styles that we do and that is why DC allows different authors to write about the two flagship heroes. What I mean by that statement, is this novel is written to show Superman through the eyes of Lex Luther. It paints Superman as a dark figure, an outsider, not the save the day boy scout that he is know as by the general public. It's a darker Superman, and I admire the work done by both artists.
While it makes no explicit reference to Nietzsche or other philosophical sources, writer Brian Azzarello is clearly aware of them.
This work takes Luthor's viewpoint and makes some very intriguing insights as a result.
It is also told in a very sophisticated manner, leaving out nonessential details and forcing the reader to play close attention and do lots of work; and that's not a bad thing.
The artwork is well suited to this non-comic-book philosophical investigation; it is as thought-provoking and stylized as the storytelling. For example, videos and/or reflections of Superman facing Luthor as he reflects on the nature of humanity heighten the philosophical and psychological drama.
This work is truly original; you don't feel like it is copying scenes from films or former stories, and it's not a version or retelling or adaptation, even if it explores familiar Superman/Luthor (and comic book) questions about heroism and humanity.
Overall, a deeply original and philosophical work.