I think the world – comic books geeks and regular folks alike – took a moment to pause for a great man yesterday. That man, of course, the one and only Stan Lee. “Uncle Stan” as I like to call him. He’s not really my uncle, but he’s been a big part of our family and if I could handpick a crazy uncle out of anyone in this world, it would definitely be Stan Lee. I heard it said that Stan Lee didn’t think one man could change the lives of so many people, but oh how he was wrong. His work was revolutionary. It goes far beyond simply creating characters for entertainment purposes. His work weighed on numerous social issues far before the masses were ready to think about, must less talk about those issues. I honestly can’t put into words how heartbroken I am right now, but I will say this: Excelsior, Uncle Stan!
To honor a great man and his work, here are our office’s favorite Stan Lee characters:
If I had to pick only one Stan Lee character as my favorite it would probably be Black Panther. He’s a total badass. He looks killer in a black suit. PLUS, he’s dedicated to fighting social injustice for other nations as well as for his own people. (Not to mention the Wakanda technology is far superior over technology of most countries. I loved how it was brought to life in the movie when it came out.) To me, this character showed Stan Lee was willing to take chances. He was willing to create a controversial character in a time when it was taboo because he wanted to take a stand for what he believed was right, no matter the backlash from radical white supremacists and others. Other characters I feel deserve an honorable mention are: Black Widow and Scarlet Witch…because, well, WOMAN POWER!
When I think of Stan Lee I think of a lifetime of memories, honestly. It’s hard to pick a character that he created that is my favorite because I all love each one in some way. However, the Incredible Hulk is one of the first superhero movies I remember watching. I can recall my little brother getting a Hulk costume and we all loved playing with the giant Hulk fists that made noise every time you’d hit them together. Stan Lee’s other characters that made up the Fantastic Four meant a lot to us growing up as well. There was a time everyday after school where we would go to our babysitter’s house and she’d be making homemade tortillas for us as we watched the Fantastic Four – everyday! My siblings and I knew that movie like the back of our hands. Rest in Peace, Stan. As a lovers of entertainment, we owe you so much.
Can I please get a slow clap for the amazing woman characters that Stan Lee brought into our lives before we knew we needed them? Like he did for Sue Storm, Stan was adamant that these characters be so much more than just love interests, because he knew what it really took to make a hero and that being a man wasn’t a requirement. Some of his characters were so powerful they were only rivaled by the main male hero, like Jean Grey or Hela. His most famous woman characters may be anti-heroes (or start that way) like Black Widow, but we can all agree that they’re still bad-a**es. Lest us not forget the dueling sisters in Guardians of the Galaxy. I am very excited to see Captain Marvel next March and have no doubt that she will be amazing and empowering like the rest. Thank you, Stan Lee!
I was amazed looking at all of the accomplishments from Stan Lee. He’s a mastermind behind so many great comics and movies. Growing up my little brother was always obsessed with every Spiderman and Iron Man movie. A few weeks ago, I watched Black Panther and was so obsessed with it I watched it again the next day. The film, culture, and acting behind it was AMAZING. Stan Lee was one incredible guy. Rest in peace.
Hearing of Stan Lee's passing was a pretty hard day for my family. My dad collects Marvel comic books and would always let my brother and me read them when I was growing up. The first comic book I ever read was Spider-Man and I have been a die-hard fan ever since. I loved the cheesy one-liners, the even cheesier super villains and Spider-Man always (well, usually) saving the day. The first OTP I ever shipped was Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson even though 9-year-old me didn’t have any idea what an OTP was. I’ve watched all the movies AT LEAST a thousand times (yes, even Spider-Man 3) and I vividly remember playing Spider Man games on the old X-Box. One of my favorite childhood memories was watching reruns of the old Spider-Man cartoon show on Saturday mornings while my dad made pancakes. Spider-Man was my main source of inspiration, and sometimes I still ask myself WWSMD when I get caught in a bind (or a web, I guess). As I got older, my fascination with comics faded, but my love for Spider-Man and all the other Marvel super heroes lives on with each new MCU movie. Stan Lee was a legend.
Also, the old Spider-Man theme song? Yeah, it’s a BOP. Where’s its Grammy?
To be honest, I had never really watched a super hero movie until Black Panther was released in theaters. That was the very first action/superhero movie I was excited to see and that I stayed until the end to finish. After the movie ended, I went to see it again two days later. After watching Black Panther, I decided to watch Spiderman-Homecoming and the Avengers movies. The stories that Stan Lee was able to tell through using superhero characters is truly amazing. I can’t wait to go home and watch more of his amazing work.
Stan Lee once said, "I used to be embarrassed because I was just a comic-book writer while other people were building bridges or going on to medical careers. And then I began to realize: entertainment is one of the most important things in people’s lives. Without it they might go off the deep end. I feel that if you’re able to entertain people, you’re doing a good thing." You did a good thing, Stan. Excelsior!