The Marvelous Life of Stan Lee

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The Marvelous Life of Stan Lee

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By: Alexis Peck, News editor

Stanley Martin Lieber, Stan Lee, was a comic book writer, editor, and publisher. He has co-created many famous Marvel characters,his most famous being Spider-Man.

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Stan Lee’s cameo in”The Amazing Spider-Man” with Andrew Garfield as a librarian oblivious to Spider-Man and the Lizard wrecking the library behind him. Photo Credit:

It all began in 1939, when his uncle aided him into becoming an assistant at the then new “Timely Comics” division of Pulp Magazine, which turned into Marvel comics in the 1960 and a comic book publisher at Martin Goodman’s company. Lee did not start as anything special for Timely, he would get people lunches, refill ink pads, and proofread. Finally he made his debut with a writing filler “Captain America Foils the Traitor’s Revenge.” Eventually, he moved up and started writing actual comics, where he co created his first superhero, the Destroyer. At the age of 18, Lee was promoted to interim editor.

Lee would do anything for his comics. In the early 1942, Lee served in the United States Military in the Training Film Division where he created manuals, training films, slogans, and cartoons. While with the army he was still working at Timely and would get his assignment on Fridays and send in the finished story on Mondays. Once, the mail clerk did not see his letter. The next day Lee went by the mail room that was closed at the time and saw his assignment addressed to Timely Comics. Lee asked the officer to open the mail room, but he denied his simple request. Not wanting to miss his deadline for unnecessary reasons, Lee unscrewed the mailbox hinges with a screwdriver. He was turned in to the base captain for tampering with official property. The colonel of the Finance Department saved Lee from facing these charges and going to jail.

In the late 1950’s, DC Comics created the Justice League of America, the publisher of Marvel assigned Lee to created their own team full of heroes. Lee was considering changing his career at this time, so he took some risks that most were afraid to at this time because the standard archetype. The archetype then was a picture perfect human being but Lee created complex, naturalistic characters who had all types of flaws. With the help of artist Jack Kirby, he created the Fantastic Four. The Fantastic Four gained a lot of recognition and was popular in the public. With this success  Lee was inspired to make more characters together such as The Hulk, Thor, Iron-Man, and the X-Men with Kirby; Doctor Strand and Spider-Man with Steve Ditko. Lee and Kirby then took some of these characters and formed the Avengers.

He continued to develop new characters after all this success and continued to succeed. In 1972, Lee became the publisher and did not write monthly comic books due to his new position. He ended his comic book writing with Fantastic Four #125 in August. In 1981, Lee moved his life to California to expand the Marvel industry’s television and movie properties. He was an executive producer and made cameos in Marvel films.

Stan Lee’s career started as just a small kernel that transformed into a large farm. He won many awards for his achievements such as: Will Eisner Award Hall of Fame in 1994, Jack Kirby Hall of Fame in ‘95, The Life Career Award in 2002, Bill Finger Award in 2005, PGA Vanguard Award in 2012, and Independent Publisher Book Award for Independent Voice in 2017.

“How many millions of us are indebted to this guy, none more so than me. The father of Marvel has made so many people so incredibly happy. What a life and what a thing to have achieved. Rest in peace Stan,” Tom Holland,  most recent actor to play Spider-Man, captioned his Instagram post dedicated to Lee.

When asked about how he felt about Stan Lee’s death, Manatee High School teacher, Mr. Rice said,”Tragic, I can’t think of anybody that had a bigger impact on the comic book industry than he had. He had influenced not only comic books, but movies as well, he defined the childhoods of many young men and women. I know I read his comics when I was young and they impacted me.”

“I can’t believe he’s really gone and I wonder how Marvel will go on with out him in the big chair,” said Manatee High School junior, Tori Blanton.

On Nov. 12, 2018, the world said goodbye to Stan Lee as he died at the age of 95. His cause of death was suffering from cardiac arrest. Many have mourned over the death of Stan Lee, and it can be accurately presumed that, he will not be forgotten, held to the physical world by his work and those who remember him.