Luthor And Zod, Move Over Picture

Well, now that "Superman Returns" is finally out, I think it's time for WB to give Lex a vacation - he seems to be the only one of Superman's Rogues Gallery that anyone over there has any interest in using (I'm not dissing Kevin Spacey here). So assuming that we see a sequel, who should be next up to bat? Taking a cue from Bryan Singer's adulation for the original 1978 Richard Donner movie (I can't diss that either - if I'd have made "Superman Returns", I probably would have gone down that same path), I re-worked some of Big Blue's other frequent headaches...(clockwise from left):

* Mr. Mxyzptlk - no, you aren't seeing things. I did indeed dress Mxy like a pimp. That's because: A) it fits his most dominant personality trait, which is his ego; B) because that damn bowler and brown spacesuit just don't look cool; and C) it makes him an homage of sorts to Bo Rucker, who had the single best line in the entire original movie: "Say, Jim - whooo! That's a bad out-FIT!"

* Metallo - the forearms I 'borrowed' from the design for the Robot in the "Lost In Space" movie (which IMO was the best thing about it), with some Gundamy legs, but it's John Corben's head that's real special - anyone who's seen the director's cut of "Superman: The Movie" and the first scene of "Superman II" will recognize that as the head of one of those robot-drone-sentinel-stormtrooper guys from Krypton. Also, the gold plating on his chest and arms is supposed to an homage to the character's Silver Age look.

* Brainiac - I knew I wantedthat 'retro' look from "Superman: The Animated Series", but I was torn as to how to do it. I finally took the outfit from the aforementioned robot-drone-sentinel-stormtrooper guy from Krypton, made it deep purple, and gave him a head evocative of that "mask" effect used for the Jor-El hologram in "Superman: The Movie", as if to imply Brainiac is sort of 'kin' to Kal-El and thus take him even further off his guard. The circuity look to his hands was salvaged from the 'assimilated' Vera in "Superman III".

* Toyman - ol'Winslow Schott here was a reinterpretation of the character from "Superman: The Animated Series". I made the stare on his 'pumpkinhead' mask a bit creepier - kind of making him like a masked serial killer, only he targets superheroes instead of normal people - and gave him a beanie on top with a mini-copter rotor; that would necessitate a harness to lock the mask onto to keep him from strangling himself as he takes off - and would also be difficult to remove, particularly with those red solar lamps built into his boxing gloves.

* Bizarro - this one was pretty direct; I just muddied the costume and tried my best 'Brandon Routh after three weeks of no sleep or bathing' likeness. Capturing likenesses of actual people is a 50/50 thing for me, but in this case I felt it necessary since if Bizarro were introduced in the Superman movie mythology, he'd probably be another Lex-created clone (a la John Byrne's "Man Of Steel" run and "Superman: The Animated Series"). And I kept the S-logo facing the right way - I never understood the backwards-S post-"Crisis".

* Parasite - I was gonna give Rudy Jones here a skinned-cadaver look reminiscent of the power-stripping scene in "Superman II", which would have been fitting given Rudy's abilities, but I realized that might be too graphic to be something WB would approve of for an audience likely to have kids in it. However, in keeping with Rudy's life-force-sucking nature, I made him zombie-looking and replaced the shorts with a scrap loincloth - I wasn't gonna have him naked, and putting him in green shorts makes him look like an overgrown Patrick Star.

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