This past Monday, November 12th, the world lost a creator of a universe. Stan Lee, the father of Spider-man, the X-Men, Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, and a seemingly endless cast of world-impacting characters passed into the great unknown, leaving us with two more cameos for 2018.
Marvel and Disney have confirmed that we’ll be able to see his classic cameos in the upcoming animated films “Ralph Breaks the Internet” and Sony’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”. While the man is gone, Marvel and Disney are showcasing the talent and influence Stan infused into the daily lives of millions of loyal fans.
As Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief, Stan “The Man” Lee made his voice the voice of the stories themselves. Writing virtually every Marvel title and working with such luminaries as Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Don Heck, Gene Colan and John Romita, Stan began building a universe of interlocking continuity, one where fans felt as if they could turn a street corner and run into a Super Hero. A rich collection of characters grew out of his nonstop plotting sessions with his artists, including the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Thor, Iron Man, the Hulk, the X-Men, and more. Today, it would be almost impossible to find a corner of the Marvel Universe that Stan didn’t have a hand in.
The Marvel/Disney Team
Finding his voice and opportunity to evolve the concepts behind comic books in the May 1941 issue of CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS #3, Stan Lee started a movement that would impact generations. Not just from behind the masks of muscle-bound men and leggy female fighters, but with the message of hope. Anything was possible in the world Stan Lee created, and good always found a way to win. Yes, nearly every character in the Marvel Universe has met an untimely demise (several times), but miraculously there was a rebirth, regeneration, or new life.
When something mattered to Stan, you felt it in his words, whether in an editorial or in the stories themselves. With passion for the medium, he helped refine and reform the Comics Code Authority and addressed hot-button issues like discrimination, drugs, and intolerance.
The Marvel/Disney Team
Stan Lee’s passing is an overwhelming loss for the physical world of fans and admirers, but it’s the universe he created for all of us to find joy and excitement in that will define his memory for generations to come.