Today, we pause and reflect with great sadness on the passing of Stan Lee: https://t.co/J0cwgdn677 pic.twitter.com/eOBdZAqdZ0
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) November 12, 2018
Here’s Marvel Entertainment’s statement:
NEW YORK, NY – NOVEMBER 12, 2018
Today, Marvel Comics and The Walt Disney Company pause and reflect with great sadness on the passing of Marvel Chairman Emeritus, Stan Lee. With a heavy heart, we share our deepest condolences with his daughter and brother, and we honor and remember the creator, voice and champion of Marvel.
“Stan Lee was as extraordinary as the characters he created. A super hero in his own right to Marvel fans around the world, Stan had the power to inspire, to entertain, and to connect. The scale of his imagination was only exceeded by the size of his heart,” said Bob Iger, Chairman and CEO, The Walt Disney Company.
Stanley Martin Lieber, a.k.a. Stan Lee, loved the written word from an early age, and wanted to craft stories like those in his favorite books and films, which he consumed voraciously. From a simple upbringing in the teeming landscape of Manhattan, young Stanley worked his way through a succession of jobs until the day he found himself an assistant at a comic book publishing company — Timely Comics.
In between refilling artists’ inkwells, erasing pencil lines from comic pages and fetching an untold number of lunches, Stanley expressed his desire to write and create tales of his own; in the May 1941 issue of CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS #3, he got his wish. Readers would find a prose story in that issue, “Captain America Foils the Traitor’s Revenge,” sporting the byline of “Stan Lee.” A star was born.
As Stan’s roles and tenure with Timely Comics grew and evolved, so did the company itself. With Stan at its helm, Timely Comics morphed first into Atlas Comics and then into the name that would catapult it into legend and forever be synonymous with Stan Lee: Marvel Comics.
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.
Marvel fans found a friend in Stan Lee. He introduced the famous “Stan’s Soapbox” to speak directly to his readers, reaching a personal level rarely seen in comics of the day. Always pushing for new ways of creating comics, Stan also inaugurated the “Marvel method” of plotting and art, creating some of the most iconic stories in the industry to this day.
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.
Stan stepped up from his position as Editor-in-Chief in 1972 to tackle the role of Publisher at Marvel Comics, and while a strong succession of writers followed in his wake, his spirit and voice remained throughout the adventures that followed. His outspoken love for comics even extended to a series of college campus talks; given any chance to educate and illuminate on the industry, he took it. An entire generation of young readers expanded and strengthened their vocabulary and knowledge through Stan’s stories.
Marvel and the entire The Walt Disney Company salute the life and career of Stan Lee and offer their undying gratitude for his unmatchable accomplishments within their halls. Every time you open a Marvel comic, Stan will be there.
Please join us today in remembering Stan “The Man” Lee.
From one of my two favorite comic book artists:
Rest In Peace @TheRealStanLee #legend #StanLee #StanLeeRIP pic.twitter.com/acQpyBxCqk
— Alex Ross (@thealexrossart) November 12, 2018
Lee, like many of the men, especially the Jewish men of his generation, served in the US military during World War II. Specifically, he started in the Signal Corps and was ultimately transferred into the Training Films Division.
(I mostly read DC so I’m not a huge Stan Lee fan, but I understand that for all his flaws he was a tireless promoter of comics as an important medium, and superhero stories)
Major Major Major Major
RIP Mr. Lee. You made some good stuff!
No more cameo appearances. He will be missed. May he R.I.P.
He was a man with significant amounts of both good and evil on his account. I think socially he did more good. He was unquestionably a giant.
I thought Mopic was an element of signal?
I trust he’ll be resurrected with a brand new set of superpowers within about a year or so.
Adam L Silverman
@Raven: It was, as far as I know. But it was a distinct unit. Prior to MOPIC he was stringing telegraph wire for the Army.
Who is your other favorite artist?
Excelsior Stan Lee. I wish your heroes were real and could take care of the crook in the White House.
Adam L Silverman
@clay: Stepjan Sejic. I’m a big fan of his too short run doing the new Justice League books. Largely because DC couldn’t get its act together. He has a very unique style, just like Ross does, but in a different way.
A long full life. RIP.
IIRC, the new thing Stan Lee brought to comic books was a level of realism. Spider-Man didn’t live in Metropolis or Gotham — he lived in New York City, with all of the same contemporary problems of other New Yorkers. Peter Parker wasn’t born a millionaire and had trouble making his rent sometimes.
For good or ill, that’s what Lee brought to comic books.
I haven’t read a comic book in 50 years or so, but I know Stan Lee was among the best of the best.
Villago Delenda Est
A giant. He, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and other silver age folks created all the thrills the MCU is based on.
No more cameos. Sucks.
Rest well, Stan. You’ve earned it and then some after such a superb run.
@Patricia Kayden @Villago Delenda Est: I heard they had filmed a number of cameos in advance for just this eventuality. I don’t know how many they have in the can, but there might be more to come.
Will say he was a master of self-promotion and leave it at that.
RIP Mr. Lee, thanks for sending so much joy into the universe and just not stopping all the way through the end of your wonderful and prolonged life!
Adam L Silverman
@Luthe: If I had to guess, I’d expect, at least, the untitled Avengers 4 and the forthcoming Captain Marvel.
??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??
@Villago Delenda Est:
You think they’ll try to continue the tradition by digitally adding him? I’m only half joking.
In all seriousness, RIP Stan Lee. Thanks for creating Spiderman!
@Adam L Silverman: Both of those finished the actual filming parts a while ago, so they should have cameos unless it’s decided to edit them out. I imagine the cameos will stay in, plus probably some sort of tribute to mark his passing.
@Patricia Kayden: Mueller’s fine, but Iron Man would punch that orange fucker into next week. The Hulk would demolish him.
??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??
That time in the 90s when Spiderman met Stan Lee
Would that Moebius ( Jean Giraud ) were still around to draw a tribute to Lee.
Dorothy A. Winsor
I’ve been watching old Hell’s Kitchen episodes on Amazon Prime and there was one where Stan Lee was seated at a Chef’s Table right in the kitchen so he could see everything going on. He kept commenting and finally said, “I have to find a way to make this into a story.” I don’t know if he ever did, but it shows the way he thought.
Chacal Charles Calthrop
@Mnemosyne: Agreed, and what he did made comics much more powerful as a result.
what I principally remember is that because they were so under-the-radar comics didn’t have to worry about critics and that, together with the flexibility of the medium, meant they could tell any kind of story, unbounded by anything other than whatever made the story work (& pass the censorship laws)
I remember being completely blown away by Jim Starlin’s Infinity Gauntlet back in the 90’s, and being blown away again by the appearance of Thanos at the end of the Avengers. I walked out of there thinking, They’re filming the Infinity Gauntlet! But the Infinity Gauntlet is unfilmable!
And, unfortunately, when Avengers 3 came out, Thanos was just a bad father, not the embodiment of the death impulse who wants to sacrifice the universe to his beloved Mistress Death. Apparently Disney is pulling punches, something Stan Lee never did, even when writing under the censorship of the Comics Code.
At least Stan Lee lived long enough to see his contributions acknowledged in his own lifetime.
Dorothy A. Winsor
Semi-related, I blogged about writing religion in secondary world fantasies.
Adam L Silverman
@NotMax: I decided to leave the bad stuff out. There’ll be plenty of time for people to pick apart the good and the bad later.
@brendancalling: That clip never gets old.
I’m going to miss Stan Lee’s cameos in movies. They were fun inside jokes.
Villago Delenda Est
KNOW YE THESE, THE HALLOWED RANKS OF MARVELDOM
RFO: Real Frantic One, buyer of at least three Marvel mags a month
TTB: Titanic True Believer, a divinely inspired “no prize” winner.
QNS: Quite ‘Nuff Sayer, a fortunate frantic one who’s had a letter printed.
KOF: Keeper Of the Flame, one who recruits a newcomer to Marvel’s rollicking ranks.
PMM: Permanent Marvelite Maximus, anyone possessing all four of the other titles
FFF: Fearless Front Facer, an honorary title bestowed for devotion to Marvel above and beyond the call of duty.
@Adam L Silverman: Have you seen his stuff at Deviant Art? He gets to let his silly side out there, which is an interesting look.
Mike in DC
I think the treatment of Jack Kirby is really the biggest black mark on his record. But the impact he had on the industry, and on pop culture, is immeasurable. RIP.
This Spencer Ackerman piece seems to do a fair job of reporting the complexities of Stan without overly pissing on hls grave.
Way to go, Stan, you had one hell of a run! Thanks primarily for DAREDEVIL, one of the coolest, most offbeat superheroes ever to grace Marveldom. Excelsior!
Did coax a really big belly laugh out of him during a one on one meeting, circa 1985.
I came to comics mostly in the 85-00 period, and while I understand intellectually the incredible contribution he is responsible for in his younger years, my memories are of a man who never spoke out against the crass commoditization of content, exploitation of readers, and general commercial authorial dreck. If anything, he always gave the appearance of reveling in it.
There were so many good things happening in that period – the start of serious imports from Japan, the rise of independent and self-published comics, the beginnings of direct sale of comics first through distributor catalogs and then through the internet, and the very start of internet comics… and if Stan didn’t exactly oppose them, he was the standard bearer for business-as-usual, which meant producing comics strictly as a business team, ignoring all of this revolution in favor of the wretched output Marvel produced. Even DC was ahead of his game, with their Vertigo imprint which basically delivered Neil Gaiman to the world. (And I still can’t believe Preacher made it the full run without getting cancelled, much less to television.)
Stan Lee, to me, was that self-promoter guy who was maybe cool before I was born, but mostly just got paid to stamp his name on anything the hopeless writing teams at Marvel got told to put in their comics and show up on video any time Marvel put together a movie… which really were not any good in that period either.
So celebrate Stan Lee for creating the Marvel “Universe”, but don’t forget just how complicit in its long-term failings he was.
Douglas Rain, a.k.a. the voice of HAL 9000, has also died today. I would contend that 2001 is more chilling than almost any modern horror film you care to name, because HAL 9000’s actions are completely within the realm of plausibility. Rain’s serene performance is the backbone of the entire film.
Others have already covered Lee’s legacy admirably, so I won’t recap. R.I.P. to two giants.
Villago Delenda Est
@(((CassandraLeo))): “What do you think you’re doing, Dave?”
I’m not gonna say Rest in Peace, Stan. More than most, you’ve earned the right to do whatever the fuck you want in the afterlife.
May the best of your stories continue to be read 1000, 2000, even 3000 years from now. You were the Homer of 20th C. America.
“Dave. My mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it”
If it’s any consolation, HAL, most of the US was right there with you, Nov. 8-9, 2016.
You lived a helluva life?
I like this obituary, which covers both his extraordinary influence and his conduct as a greedy businessperson.
Goodbye to a giant of popular culture.
Stan lee is responsible for literally hundreds, maybe thousands, of hours of my personal entertainment over the course of my life.
A great life for a great entertainer.
This thread is dead, but in case anyone is still reading, I learned from Sarah Weinman’s Twitter that Stan Lee went on a date with Patricia Highsmith. Somebody other people had heard of set them up on a date back in the 40s. Would have loved to have her take on a superhero comic.
Stan was a legend, a relentless promoter of positivity and the ambassador of alliteration.
and best of all…
J. Jonah Jameson…Junior.
An amazing life. I expect the haters will not be able to let even a day go by without denigrating him for treatment of artists at Marvel and doing everything they can to reduce his contributions to what was great over there, but the work stands.