Are Superhero Films Light Hearted?

Are comic book movies, as in films based on comic book heroes, supposed to be light hearted? People in contemporary reviews were a bit disappointed with Gene Hackman's performance as Lex Luthor in Superman (1978) and Superman II (1980) compared to Jesse Eisenberg and Michael Risenbaum They are saying he... show more Are comic book movies, as in films based on comic book heroes, supposed to be light hearted?

People in contemporary reviews were a bit disappointed with Gene Hackman's performance as Lex Luthor in Superman (1978) and Superman II (1980) compared to Jesse Eisenberg and Michael Risenbaum

They are saying he could do better, clearly referencing his roles as villians in Unforgiven (1992), The Quick And The Dead (1995), even Runaway Jury (2003)

Also intimidating in films like The French Connection (1971)

However is the reason Hackman didn't play Lex Luthor as intimidating or scary, (like he has dine in other roles) instead playing him funny and light hearted, because the films are supposed to be light hearted?
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