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Smallville's: Michael Rosenbaum

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AGE: 31

HOMETOWN: Newburgh, Ind.

LATEST GIG: TV’s hottest villain-to-be

•Bad guy in training: As a young Lex Luthor, Rosenbaum—”Sexy Lexy” to his female fans—puts a fresh spin on the arch villain, befriending future nemesis Clark Kent (Tom Welling). He also sports the character’s signature sleek dome, which has inspired more than a few admirers to get hands-on with his head: “Some just go in for the kill,” says the single actor. “It’s like a natural instinct.”

•The simple life: Living in a loft in Vancouver, where Smallville shoots, Rosenbaum savors the leisurely lifestyle. “In L.A. there’s a party here and a party there,” he says. “In Vancouver it’s like, ‘I think the Canucks are playing on Thursday.’ ”

•Music man: A fan of ’80s music, Rosenbaum loves to belt out tunes for the cast. “My favorite is ‘Jessie’s Girl,’ ” says Welling. “He can play the guitar with it and everything.”

•Stars on ice: “I’ve always been a scrapper, but I don’t go for the cheap shots anymore,” says Rosenbaum, who started playing hockey as a kid in Indiana and now plays on an intramural team called the Rippers in Vancouver. “If I cut my head open…I don’t need that.”

•Lex would be horrified: In addition to hockey, guitar and writing screenplays (he’s done two), Rosenbaum likes to indulge in “a nice hot bath—sometimes two a day,” says the actor, who’s now filming the horror flick Cursed with Christina Ricci. “My girlfriends, when I have one, always get me tea-tree oil and that kind of thing. I love it.”