Real Name: Alexander “Lex” Luthor
First Appearance: Action Comics #23 (April, 1940)
Powers: None. Heavily relies on his extreme intellect and uncountable wealth
Affiliation: Injustice League, Secret Six, LexCorp, Secret Society, and more.
Love Interests: Too many wives to count
Did You Know: Lex Luthor was once the President of the United States
A Little History
One of the most shrouded in mystery origins in all of comics, Lex Luthor is the antithesis to Superman.
In his first appearance, Lex Luthor is shown attempting to create a war between two imaginative nations. As is almost always the case, luckily Superman was able to stop the looming war. Unfortunately, after the halt, one of the nations persisted. This caused Superman to approach the General. He did so, not as Superman but as Clark Kent.
After questioning the general, Superman learns that he works for a man named Lex Luthor. Sensing his intrusion, Luthor sends his men to Clark’s hotel room to murder him. What they didn’t plan was that instead of Clark being there, Lois Lane was. The henchman promptly kidnapped her and brought her in for questioning. Thankfully, Lois was able to get the message of her kidnapping out to Superman and he quickly arrived to rescue her.
Lex Luthor was prepared for the rescue and during their encounter, he used a ray gun to weaken him. Using what was left of his strength, Superman destroyed the machine and within minutes of the impending explosion, escaped with Lois.
Unfortunately, this appearance leaves much to be desired of his origin. This would be elaborated upon in Adventure Comics #271.
As a young boy, Lex and his family moved to Smallville where he lived in awe of Superboy. In an act of appreciation, Superboy built him a fully-stocked laboratory. Within the walls of the lab, Lex experimented with artificial life and a cure for Kryptonite poisoning. Unfortunately, his lab caught fire and as a result of an attempt by Superboy to save his life, Lex was left with no hair and two experiments destroyed.
He then vowed to spend the rest of his life proving himself superior to everything Super.
Title Image © DC Comics