Otis was about medium height and is slightly overweight. He had short brown hair and light brown eyes. He usually wore sweaters and shirts with usually a tie and suspenders.
Otis was extremely loyal to Lex and he is also somewhat naive.
Nothing is known about Otis' life before his first appearance. At some point he became Lex Luthor's personal assistant. Perhaps the closest thing Lex had to an actual friend.
He watches Superman fly every morning in the sky of Metropolis along with his boss as part of Lex's routine.
On the day of the launch, the shuttle explodes forcing Superman to rescue the crew from being destroyed. Commander Henshaw wakes up on a stretcher, with burns from the radiation exposure. Superman learns that the shuttle explosion was not a misfire.
On the roof of LexCorp Plaza, Otis nervously confronts Lex with the results from his research, but Lex interrupts him, saying he wishes to savor the moment. Otis, confused, explains that the situation is terrible for LexCorp and questions his apparent cheerfulness. But Lex explains he has a good reason to be cheerful, stating he and Superman are about to have a very interesting conversation.
Otis interrupts a conversation between Lex Luthor and Tess Mercer informing Lex that the procedure of transferring Hank Henshaw's mind in a robotic body is over. He then express his sorrow for her condition to the invisible Tess, much to Lex's annoyance. It's morning once again in Metropolis and Otis walks in on Lex sleeping in his office. Otis reminding Lex about his appointments of the day. He's meeting with a representative of Waynetech. Lex never makes it up to his penthouse anymore; he stays up all night at his office laptop watching Superman's energy signature fly all around the city fighting crime and saving lives. Later, at the Ace of Clubs, Lex and Bruce have their lunch meeting on the patio while Barbara Gordon is having lunch with Otis. Bruce and Lex are discussing why billionaires have the right to order off menu and Wayne Enterprises building a Super Collider in Antarctica, but Barbara tells Otis that Michael Holt and Ted Kord have joined in on the Wayne Super Collider project. Otis wonders aloud what it's like to work for a different rich guy. Barbara says they're all the same. Lex and Bruce's lunch is prematurely ended by Superman.
Shortly after, at LexCorp, Lex Luthor is enjoying video of the showdown between Superman and Batman as Stryker's Island prison. Lex keeps pausing and rewinding Batman, powered by red sun energy, beating up Superman. Lex also thinks he has a television that allow him enhance and move around corners inside the frame. He's bummed when Otis reminds him his TV can't do that. Otis liked the other match between Nightwing and Green Arrow better. Oliver Queen then bursts into Lex's office to accuse Lex of harassing him with those coded emails. When Oliver leaves, Lex notices the time stamps are all from the dead of night. Later, during the night, Otis sees Tess take control of Lex and rises from his peaceful slumber and sleepwalks to his office, speaking gibberish and caressing Otis' face. Then she starts sending out the emails. Otis hands a partly burnt popcorn to Lex, noting that it is early, though it's never too early for entertainment as Lex says, after that Otis leaves giving Lex some alone time.
While Lex was using a former Luthorcorp procedure in order to find out what Tess knows about his previous life, Otis informs Lex of an attack on the city that would interest him. Outside, Dr. Simon Jones, a genius with psychokinetic and telepathic abilities calling himself Psimon, attacks the citizens of Metropolis using his powers to levitate and surround himself with a number of metallic orbs, until Superman and Impulse. Later at LexCorp, where Lois talks with Otis while waiting to speak with Lex, attempting to get him to admit to his boss' secretly nefarious nature. However Otis believes that Lex is truly trying his best to make the world a better place for man kind. Lex intervenes, inviting Lois into his office.
Lex meets with Otis to discuss the incident that occurred at the Ridge Facility. Otis informs him of only one fatality and that, so far, no press has heard of what happened. As they pass by one of the janitorial staff on their way out of the building, the janitor steals Otis' security keycards. On Level 3, the janitor is revealed to be Lois as she uses a keycard to access the floor.
Lex angrily surveys the room at LexCorp where the Project Intercept machine once stood. He asks after the security tapes and the night guards, and Otis tells him the tapes were stolen and all of the guards quit. Lex turns to the vision of Tess and she denies having anything to do with it. He realizes that it must have been Oliver Queen. Otis remarks that it would likely be best to postpone the procedure to cause his boss brain damage to kill Tess' conscience. Frustrated, Lex leaves but before that he fires all of his stuff, including Otis.
Some time later, Lois Lane tries to get some information from Otis about Tess and Psimon for a little bit, but Otis is still getting over being fired from his job so he rejects to speak to her. After leaving the bar, Lois contacts the Batcave. Lois asks Barbara Gordon's help to speak to Otis. Barbara accepts to help Lois and moments later she arrives in Metropolis on the Bat-Rocket and enters the bar Otis is in, intending to speak to him.
At LexCorp Plaza, Lex heads towards his office only to find that the lights aren't working. As he calls for Otis, Superman appears reminding him that he fired Mr. Berg. The Green Arrow appears revealing they are here to take Tess back. Then Lois appears surrounding Lex. As Green Arrow is about to use a taser arrow, Lois slaps Lex knocking him unconscious. As he wakes up, he is help by Otis. He realizes what the heroes did and he asks where is Tess.
Days later, Otis wakes Lex Luthor, who has not come out of his room since his plan to track down Superman failed and Tess was extracted from his head. Otis brings to him good news that stimulates the curiosity of Lex: a recording of a spacecraft that landed at Smallville months ago.
At LexCorp output, Tess remotely locks the doors preventing Otis to accompany Lex, and outside there are three former employees of LexCorp heading towards Lex. Unfortunately the three men start to beat up Lex with Otis being unable to do anything.
Lex wakes up at the hospital after the beating, and sees that Otis has sent a psychologist to talk with him. Lex recognises that Otis cares for him and says that this is the only reason he hasn't completely fired him.
Later Lex visits a secret lab of LexCorp, called Network, where its scientists report to Lex the analysis of meteorites they have found along with the ship that Otis informed him about previously.
Lex, who orders an attack at S.T.A.R. Labs, is confronted by Otis who wants to be assured that Lex's men won't use any lethal force. Otis tries to convince Lex not to harm anyone saying that even if he didn't know him before he lost his memory he knows he is not that kind of a man anymore. Lex responds by quoting the author Ralph Waldo Emerson saying that “the only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be” and then orders his men to begin the attack.
Tess, while controlling a huge robot, attacks the soldiers sent by Lex in S.T.A.R. Labs and then breaks into the place, where Lex and Otis are. Lex orders Otis to leave the place.
Later at LexCorp, Otis brings breakfast to his boss and they talk about what happened. Otis says that he erased the security tapes in which he appears asking the robot to end his miserable existence. Lex says that the data of the ship that his team managed to steal from S.T.A.R. Labs seems conclusive that there was a parallel Earth, which was destroyed and Lex says he'll figure out how to save this one.
Lex Luthor is informed about the crash in Russia by the newscast and then his assistant, Otis, who enters his boss' office, comments on the recent revelation of Superman being an alien. Lex seems not to care too much about it, feeling that somehow he already knew. Otis also informs Lex that the recent crash in Russia has yielded similar readings came from the ship that crashed in Smallville months ago and it is now kept in S.T.A.R. Labs. Lex realises that the "thing" that fell in Russia may be from alternate reality too so he orders Otis to prepare the jet so they can travel to Russia.
Boarding the plane, Otis tells his boss that he has invited the press to chronicle his "greatness", much to Lex's annoyance. They then watch as Superman fly over them with Lex seeing it as a challenge but Clark, who is inside the plane as a representative of the Daily Plane, says that it might be more of a reminder. Lex is obviously disappointed having Clark Kent accompanying him in his travel, saying that Lois Lane would be better company.
Inside Lex's jet, Clark interviews Lex about what he believes crashed in Russia and asks him why he is so interested on that and if it has something to do with his alleged attack at S.T.A.R. Labs. Lex then asks Clark where did he hear that he is investigating the crush, looking suspiciously at a sleeping Otis, who has borrowed Clark's pillow and sleep mask.
After they arrive in Moscow, Lex decides to go and find the Monitor, who escaped the facility he was held captive, on his own. Otis informs Lex that they have traced the Monitor's movements through portals and that he has stopped at Chernobyl. Clark goes with Lex and when Lex thinks Clark can not hear him, he tells Otis that he took Clark with him because he wouldn't mind if something happened to him.
Otis is trying to reach Lex by cell phone, but it's not working. While talking with Alexi of the Rocket Red Brigade, Alexi offers Otis a drink but he says that he never drinks while on duty so when Alexi asks him how often he is on the duty Otis says always. When Alexi asks him what he used to do before he started working for Luthor, Otis indicates there's some hidden shame in his past that relates to his unwavering loyalty to Lex.
Otis remains concerned about his boss, who still does not answer his phone, and wonders what he can do for him. Suddenly, he sees one of the armors of the Rocket Reds and an idea came to his mind.
After he defeats the Monitor, Superman flies directly into the beam of Ray-Lan's ship, using it against itself and destroys it. As he falls from the sky, the ship causes a great explosion throwing shrapnel and fire, but fortunately Otis, wearing an armor of the Rocket Reds that he "borrowed", intervenes and saves Lex.
Lex wakes up in a bed in Metropolis General with Clark sitting in a chair beside him. He asks Clark where is Otis and he says that Otis went out to stretch his legs for a bit but Lex says that Otis knows better than that, so Clark says he told to Otis to do so.
Later, at LexCorp, Lex, after uttering a whispered thanks to Otis for saving his life, which Otis almost certainly didn't hear, and a scientist connect the comms device, which was stolen by Lex with a radio station to launch a powerful message to the multiverse: "To all my counterparts residing in what my people have called the multiverse, my apologies for joining the party this late. My name is Lex Luthor and I think it's time for a little chat. "
Some time passes and Lex wonders why hasn't any of his other counterparts in the multiverse communicated with him yet and Otis suggests that there might not be any of them left. Otis also deduces that his own counterparts are probably all dead too. Lex says that he can't regain access to the Monitor's ship in Russia because of the D.E.O. but Otis suggests that they should put a larger battery in the Monitor's transmitter, which gives an idea to Lex. He tells Otis to put a meeting to the books with Ted Kord and Michael Holt, as he starts to rethink Bruce Wayne's offer about the super-collider endeavor. Then, Lex watches Superman's new powers on TV and says he recognizes the symbol on his ring, but can't actually remember where from.
In LuthorCorp, Lex tells Otis that he didn't get any Lantern-related info from the Justice Society mansion. He then orders Otis to get a list of all the individuals who wore Yellow Lantern rings but Otis tells him that all of them are already in prison. Lex says that something about them was compatible with the rings, which are now on his possession, and he needs them to assemble a team in order to save the world.
Some time later, Otis secretly places a device in a darkened corridor in Section 31 of the facility moments before the experiment begins.
Otis desperately tries to make his way out of the facility without Booster Gold and Skeets, who are examining the supercollider for signs of sabotage, notice him. Booster, who is talking with his allies in D.E.O.'s facility, informs them that Clark and Lois were sucked in some kind of tear in reality, which Chloe identifies as the Bleed. Skeets says he is able to detect traces of unknown alien technology and they will continue tracking. While Booster tells them he will keep them posted, Otis finds the opportunity to get out.
Later, Otis informs Lex that the Monitor's device has already started to lose charge and Lex says that he was hoping not to reveal his new security force so early but now he doesn't have a choice. Lex reveals that he lied to them and that he intends to buy Holt and Kord out. Kord says they are not selling but suddenly Lex's private security, which is revealed to be powered by rings of the Yellow Lanterns, fires at them and Lex then says they should consider it more of a hostile takeover.
Otis is present when Lex demands from Kort and Holt to give him the access codes for the equipment and they refuse him saying that he killed Superman. Otis states that Lois Lane is dead because of Lex too. Lex insists his actions are to save the world and commands his security force to shoot both men when they refuse him again, leaving Otis in shock.
Lex Luthor continues his hostile takeover of the Antarctica facility, convinced his actions are for the greater good of the universe. He forces the wounded Kord and Holt to work on the equipment and put it back on track. Otis, who is putting a communications interface together, insists that firing Holt and Kord's machine again is not a good idea and reminds Lex that, so far, no other Lex Luthors from alternative universes have tried contacting him. Lex says he's done trying to reach them and intends to contact someone else.
After the scientists put the machine back to work, Lex's Lanterns imprison Holt and Kord once again along with Booster Gold, and Lex then orders Otis to activate the machine so they can make history, even though Otis is still not sure about Lex's plan.
When Lex Luthor, achieves to communicate with the Monitors, he suggests rather than razing his universe, simply "reboot" it. Otis, who is in the same room Lex is, is shocked when he hears his boss' offer.
Lex's Yellow Lanterns decide to turn against their employer. However, Lex reveals his contingency plan, that his subordinates' rings were slaved to his own ring and programmed to self destruct on command, and that command is given. After the corpses of the henchmen fall to the ground, Lex and Otis make their exit.
Lex and Otis return to Metropolis, with Otis asking Lex if he appreciated the view of the city before he lost all his memories as much as he does now, and how hard he worked to position himself as a good man emerging from the darkness. Otis wonders if that also includes making deals with the Monitors because it looks like they easily agreed to his plan of rebooting the universe as they watch Washington D.C. as well as five other cities apparently destroyed. Lex whoever says while the Bleed in Russia was mainly destructive, but the blue Bleed seems to have broken down for reconfiguration, with Otis wondering how they would be able to sort it out with Lex answering if they can reform everything to their specific design. Lex then assumes that no one would remember exactly what had happened and only knowing the reality created by the Monitors. Otis wonders if they hit Metropolis, they would bring them back together as a duo with Lex saying he doesn't imagine they would.
During the battle, after Lex got along with Lois inside a Monitor's ship, Otis asks Lex if he has killed Lois, but a smiling Lex points out the sky is filled with superheroes. Lex then points out that though the heroes want to stop the reboot altogether, he on the other had wants to use it to reshape the world to his particular tapestry.
Lex is confronted by the Monitors and Manhunters, for the first time ever with no backup plan and no way out. Before Lex is killed a truck slams into his attackers crushing them, and out climbs Otis from the wreckage. Lex is for once pleased and grateful to have Otis as a friend only then to see the hapless friend incinerated by a laser of a barely functioning Manhunter. In a rage Lex crushes its skull dropping to his knees in sadness at his loss.
As it turns out Otis isn't quite dead, as Lex tends to his friend's wounds, blinded and fading fast, the well meaning sidekick tells Lex he doesn't have to be a bad man.
After the battle, Lex is looking outside the Limo with his new assistant, Kitty, attempting to gain his attention. She thanks him for the opportunity to become his assistant. However when she calls him Lex, he coldly and swiftly tells her to refer to him as Mr. Luthor only and that she slumps her shoulders asking if that should better, Lex replies no and he isn't sure if it ever will be, as a nod to Otis.
- Season Eleven: Guardian, Detective, Haunted, Hollow
- Smallville Miniseries: Alien, Lantern, Chaos, Continuity
In the comics
Initially, Otis had only appeared in comic books, placed out of the main continuity, however he was officially introduced into the mainstream DC Universe, with his appearance in the New 52 title, Forever Evil #2.
In Forever Evil #2, Otis appears as a security guard, working at LexCorp. Lex Luthor finds him in the abandoned facility and Otis, after introducing himself, informs Lex that the power is off and the only thing that works is the screens, showing the Crime Syndicate's note "THE WORLD IS OURS". Later, Otis accompanies Lex inside the facility, where he is looking for Subject B-Zero. He says that Superman will come and save them like he did many times before with him and many other people close to him, because this is what he does, he always comes but then Lex asks him to stop talking. Otis apologizes, saying he talks when he gets nervous. When they find the Subject B-Zero, Lex says that it is not yet ready and a surprised Otis asks Lex what is it. The creature suddenly awakens and a terrified Otis pulls out his gun, saying that it is a monster. Lex tells him to calm down and then says to the creature that he is its creator and it must listen to every word and carry out every command he utters. After that Lex wants to test the creature so he asks it to kill Otis. Then the creature slaughters Otis.
Otis appeared in Superman Returns Prequel #3, the comic book tie-in of the film with the same name. He also made some appearances in the comic book tie-in of the animated TV series, Young Justice.
He appeared in an issue of Superman Family Adventures, which is a comic series for younger-readers, where he transformed into a version of Parasite.
- Similar to Tess Mercer, Otis is not based on, but is a reference to the character portrayed by actor Ned Beatty that first appeared in Richard Donner's film Superman: The Movie. The actor reprised the role in the sequel Superman II. Smallville's version of Otis is shown to be more reliable and intelligent than his bumbling film counterpart.
- Otis and Eve Teschmacher serve as Lex Luthor's most loyal accomplices in his crimes in the Superman films, for which both characters were originally created for. Even though he did not appear in the homage sequel of the Superman films, titled Superman Returns, he along with Eve appeared in the comic book tie-in of the film.
- Revealed in Haunted, the character's last name of Berg is a nod to a scene in Superman: The Movie where Lex Luthor reveals his plan to reshape the California coastline to Superman. While reading out the names of several cities planned to be named after Luthor, it's discovered that the film Otis scrawled in a new city name of his own: Otisburg.
- Otis did not appear in any episode of the ten seasons of Smallville. His debut was in the premiere event of the Season 11 comic book continuation of the show. However, the closest character to a man named Otis working for Lex Luthor is Otis Ford, portrayed by Malcolm Stewart in the episode Scare.
- Otis makes his first animated appearance in the Young Justice: Invasion episode "Satisfaction" as the commander of the LexCorp security force.