Apex Lex hasn’t gotten what he truly desires even after giving out super powers to villains. Can traveling the multiverse show Lex Luthor what he truly wants? Find out in Lex Luthor: Year of the Villain #1 by DC Comics!
LEX LUTHOR: YEAR OF THE VILLAIN #1
Writer: Jason Latour
Artist: Bryan Hitch and Andrew Currie
Colorist: Tomeu Morey
Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Editor: Paul Kaminski
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: September 18, 2019
Previous in Year of the Villain: Lex Luthor has been reborn as a Martian/human hybrid known as Apex Lex. Apex Lex has given the offer of superpowers to many villains for Perpetua’s cause but why is he going through the multiverse to visit other versions of himself?
A LOOK AT ONE’S SELF
Earth-38: Apex Lex finds a younger version of himself and a drunk Lionel Luther. Apex Lex shows the younger lex parts of the multiverse and murders Lionel. Apex then decides to take Younger Lex along while he travels the multiverse. Earth-32: The superman in this reality is actually a Martian taking on the form of a kryptonian and Lex Luthor is batman with a butler known as Fred. Batman Lex engages with Apex Lex but not before hearing a distress call from Superman. Apex Lex has brought Doomthor from Earth-45 and has sent him to fight Superman. Apex Lex leaves and allows Batman Lex to go help his friend and presumably die to Doomthor.
Earth-1: The world is still recovering from Lex Luthor using the Black Mercy on Superman and Lex is in a hospital bed. Apex Lex and Young Lex look upon the unconscious Lex Luthor and questions his obsession with Superman. Earth-50: Apex Lex and Young Lex visit a destroyed statue of Lex Luthor. Earth-44: Here we see an older Lex Luthor who works as a shoemaker and Young Lex kills him. Earth-13: Lex Luthor here seems to be a spell caster before he is killed by the evil Luthor duo. Earth-47: Lex Luthor here is a botanist who has created his own forest. This Lex Luthor seems to be a good person who put aside his ambition and regained his humanity.Young Lex takes his weapon and destroys Botanist Lex as Young Lex is beginning to believe that ambition is the only Luthor way. Apex Lex gifts young Lex with a suit and they fly into the sunset but ultimately Apex Lex puts him in a cryo-tube as human DNA backup.
THIS BOOK IS ALL OVER THE PLACE
In literature, short stories are extremely difficult to write because it doesn’t have the space and time to really develop ideas and scenes. You have to be very precise with your word choice because you don’t have the full novel to expand on ideas. I think this applies to this one-shot comic book. There is so much you have to say and very little space and time to do so in this story and I think here lies the problem. The pacing feels rough and it is difficult to really keep up with the plot and trying to figure out what is actually going on here. However, I think at the core there are some really good ideas.
Ambition is always a great theme and Lex Luthor has always taken his own ambition into hyperdrive. However, there was an interesting moment here when Apex Lex compares Earth-1 Lex Luther’s ambition to obsession. This is an interesting theme. When does ambition becomes obsession and rather when does ambition become *dangerous*. Certainly we as humans don’t have the same ability to do harm as Lex but we can certainly cause harm to other people in the name of ambition. Jason Latour works hard to present this theme and some of the ideas but could have really used another ten pages to flesh it out.
BOTTOM LINE: I WOULD PASS
Unless you are trying to read the complete the Villain of the Year crossover event, I think this is a pass. The art is well drawn and colored but I do not think it justifies the price cost. The biggest overarching consequence here is that Apex Lex took a human version of himself as DNA backup but beyond that you are not missing much in the narrative.
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Lex Luthor: Villain of the Year
Unless you are trying to read the complete the Villain of the Year crossover event, I think this is a pass.