With the clock ticking and March looking a whole lot closer than it did last month, the Warner Bros marketing machine has ramped up a few gears, beginning with the launch of a new viral campaign centred on Jesse Eisenberg's antagonist, the deliciously slimy Lex Luthor. After Eisenberg's appearance (he has hair!) caused a minor furore when the full length Batman vs Superman trailer dropped at Comic-con, there does seem to be a sense that the tide of public opinion is gradually turning in his favour, and now have gone on the offensive with a multi-pronged campaign designed to get Lex, and the movie, embedded in the public consciousness. And it's pretty smart.
For one thing, Lex gave an interview to Fortune Magazine last week in which he revealed a few details about his empire and his father's legacy. Thanks to the mock-profile piece, which you can check out in full here, we learn that LexCorp not only has an employee "inspiration station" complete with climbing wall, but also a free vegan food truck for doing lunch in style. Clearly, Luthor understands the virtues of high company morale.
Although LexCorp made its money in the oil industry, it now specializes in tech, which might explain why he's giving free wifi access to every single attendee at New York Comic-Con this year - like a true humanitarian. And now a new website has been launched for Lex/OS, which it just what it sounds like.
All of this is fun, but there remains a whole ton of uncertainty about exactly what form Lex's role in Batman vs Superman will take. Is he, for instance, some kind of a smokescreen for a more important villain? Whilst it seems likely that Luthor is not the main antagonist of the piece, it also seems unlikely that Warner Bros would introduce a character like Lex solely for the purpose of setting up a bigger threat. He has to have some kind of purpose, a motivation driving him forward. What sparks his campaign against Superman? Is he a Joker figure whose life has no purpose without his enemy in it, or is it triggered by something? Hopefully we'll start to receive a few more hints as Warner Bros drop the individual Batman and Superman trailers during Gotham and Supergirl this month.
But what if Warner Bros and DC are playing a cleverer game than we've given them credit for? What if there's an epic double-cross in store, and they're playing on our expectations of Luthor being a sideshow to the main, as yet unknown villain, only to reveal he's been pulling the strings all along? A kind of double red herring. Lex is too important a figure in the world of Superman to waste on a subplot that doesn't significantly impact Superman in some way.
On another note, here's a video of astrophysicist, radio host and Superman fanboy Neil deGrasse Tyson talking about the likelihood of Batman defeating his foe.
He makes a pretty interesting point about the court of public opinion giving Bruce a crucial advantage. And here's a newly released featurette looking at the making of the costumes for the movie with costume designer Michael Wilkinson, which is well worth a watch if you have eight minutes to spare and teases some of the concept art that shaped Wilkinson's work on the movie.
Batman vs Superman is still five months away, but as this gradual teasing of plot and character begins to heat up we'll hopefully get some more revealing promo in the lead up to Christmas. In the meantime, what are your thoughts on the role of Lex in Dawn of Justice? Leave a comment or write your own post about it...