It's been a really strange 48 hours…
Who knew a weekend-focused opinion article deigning to rank our favorite Lex Luthors of the TV and film multiverses would cause such… appreciation???
Okay, I kinda' did – but suddenly we had not one… not two… but three Lexes weighing in on the debate (Michael Rosenbaum, Jon Cryer, and Clancy Brown)… and then some weird, unexpected "stans" from folks on Twitter.
In case you didn't see this Twitter thread, it's definitely worth checking out the entire run. It started out with a simple reaction from Rosenbaum:
Ok, much love right back at you, Michael. Also, I want to make something really, really clear:
Michael Rosenbaum is The S*it, too.
Yes, we put Smallville's Lex at #4 and animated Lex Luthor at #1, but we made the specific point that Rosenbaum (who reprised his role in Justice League Doom) also has a stake in the top spot.
Second, let me just say maybe it isn't fair to include animated alongside live action. But I would argue that if we don't, how will we tell Michael he's our favorite Flash when we get around to writing that article? Because he is the best Flash… but now that putting him at #4 for Lex is heresy apparently? So I'm sticking with my decision.
The intention of a piece like this is not to offend people with my opinion, but to intentionally provoke a good "geek debate" and start a conversation. That said, never in a million years did I expect this to be where said conversation went.
When a fan asked whether Rosenbaum, "Are you saying the performance of voice actors don't count?" he replied politely and firmly (I mean, that's a pretty reductive take – and you're talking to an incredibly accomplished voice actor.) And then Cryer stepped into the conversation:
Well, crap. Apparently Cryer is asking me to literally knock him down a peg, and give his spot to Rosenbaum. That is beautiful, as is Rosenbaum's tweet – one that I'm sure undoubtedly launched a thousand slashfics.
And then something weirder and more random happened: Tom Arnold (True Lies, Roseanne) got involved…
Wait…. what? Who?!? Yes, that Tom Arnold. (with blue checkmark and everything). And it gets weirder… and I think a little homoerotic…
Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Flag on the play, sir! I mean, we can all have our differences of opinion here. I also somehow feel it might be a wee bit disrespectful to The French Connection's Gene Hackman – who is smart enough to stay off of Twitter.
I'm also really sure what Arnold's play is in all of this. Is he just trolling? Is he secretly a huge Hackman fan? Does he dislike Rosenbaum and Cryer? My personal take? Reads like another thirst tweet from yet another fan of hot "Lex-on-Lex" action.
Diedrich Bader?!?! He's one of my Top Five favorite Batmans! (ow, ow, ow. . . I can feel the jabs from that Twitter thread and comment section already)
Then we had Eric Carrasco (writer on CW Supergirl and the just-released Justice League vs the Fatal Five animated film, which you should definitely check out) say perhaps the most insightful thing of the entire thread:
Have you been reading my journal where I write down how much I love Katie McGrath as Lena Luthor?
So yes, 100%. We might drop both Cryer and Rosenbaum out of the Top 5 if we open it up further. – because Lena really is amazing. So is Smallville's Lionel Luthor (John Glover) – but we can't get enough of Lena on Supergirl.
Maybe it's also that Katie looks sort of like my wife, who is also a badass in her own way (being an instructional coach/teacher in public schools in rural Central Texas? Better than Lena Luthor. Sorry/Not sorry).
Eric and I took this over to my Twitter:
But this entire weird sandwich decided to get a olive on top when Clancy Brown (who everyone has agreed is "The Man") walks in and defuses the entire situation:
Also – and this is when my daughter officially freaked out: "Hank from Detroit: Become Human?!?!?!"
Yes, among other things…
Same here, Rob. Same here.
So, what did we learn from all of this Lex Luthor goodness?
● Don't mess with "Rosenbaum Nation."
● Cryer is a true mensch.
● There's a lot of thirst out there among fans for Lex / Lex.
● Tom Arnold… funny?
● Clancy Brown is… The Man.
I think based on this, my original ranking stands – but still with much love to Rosenbaum… who we promise to tweet at when we crown him… "The Best Flash."