I usually love the work of classic Superman writer Elliot S! Maggin, but in this instance, I think he screwed the pooch.
“A celebration of the exploits and adventures of the greatest villain of our time?” Really?
Isn’t that akin to throwing a convention so that people can cosplay Osama bin Laden?
And for those who will point out that the Silver/Bronze Age Lex Luthor generally didn’t kill people…well, most of the time that wasn’t for lack of trying. Many of his schemes would have resulted in death if not for the timely intervention of Superman. Plus, let’s not forget that his whole raison d’etre was to kill Superman. “Oh, he wasn’t that bad — he never hurt innocents; he just tried to murder the greatest hero of all time. A lot.”
Furthermore, if Luthor is a figure of post-modern ironic admiration by the population, then that reduces his fear-quotient and makes him a less interesting villain. You don’t worry about Luthor killing Superman if he’s also the guy you celebrate. That makes him ineffectual.
Bad, bad idea.
(From DC Comics Presents Annual #4, 1985. Written by Elliot S! Maggin; art by Eduardo Barreto and Jerry Ordway.)