The Batman v Superman Marketing Team Needs to Chill With the LexCorp Fanfic
The marketing for Batman v Superman has been pretty by-the-books: teasers, trailers, posters of the main characters, super-serious grim-dark posturing for all involved. Well, except for all of the marketing surrounding LexCorp. There’s a viral campaign that keeps positioning Lex Luthor as a real person and LexCorp as a real company — and some people, such as yours truly, think it’s starting to feel corny.
It started with the LexCorp-sponsored wi-fi at New York Comic Con, which probably would’ve been a lot cuter if the wi-fi had actually worked (and also if it hadn’t demanded you give over your email address every few minutes). But it doesn’t end there — this viral marketing campaign has also resulted in some mock-journalism, courtesy of Fortune and Wired.
This io9 story runs down some choice excerpts from two fake profiles of the fictional Luthor, starting with Fortune‘s fanfic:
As for the accusations of a few fringe outliers who accuse him of being a “war monger,” Luthor just laughs them off. “I don’t know very many ‘war mongers’ who have a foosball table in the conference room.”
It feels like the Batman v Superman casting office said, “We want Lex Luthor to seem like Mark Zuckerberg. Wait, can we just get that guy who played Mark Zuckerberg in the Facebook movie?” And then they actually did, and now all of the marketing is leaning so hard into that theme that it’s getting weird.
The movie isn’t even out, and it already feels like Lex Luthor’s characterization will be about as subtle as an anvil … which is too bad, because I really like Lex Luthor as a character, and I like Jesse Eisenberg as an actor. I want to believe that the movie will be a little more subtle than this. But, um … yikes?
Here’s a choice cut from the Wired interview with Lex Luthor, by fictional reporter Ron Troupe:
LEX LUTHOR: We should all be careful when we elevate anyone, human or alien, to “super” status.
RON TROUPE: Because we’re all equal.
LEX LUTHOR: Well that’s just absurd. No – I’m saying we need to be selective and elevate the right people. The right human people.
Get it??? The tech industry! Meritocracy! Privacy! Issues! Superheroes! Who are the real superheroes! Gray morality!!!
Honestly, this “viral” marketing campaign would bother me much less if all of the other marketing surrounding this movie didn’t keep insisting that it’s going to be dark and grim. If they were going for “corny” and “campy” and “cartoonish,” then I think all of this stuff would be great. But … I don’t think they’re going for that, given that Eisenberg has literally said that the movie is “not cartoonish.” Uh, I think I might end up laughing at this movie even if I’m not supposed to.
What do you all think? Do you like the viral LexCorp marketing? Or is it too corny? Or do you like how corny it is?
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