Stan Lee (1922-2018)

The world lost Stan Lee yesterday. If you follow this kind of blog at all, he needs no introduction. At this point, if you live in the WORLD, he needs no introduction, nor do his many co-creations.

As a brief eulogy, I want to talk about MY introduction to him, which wasn't through the comics he wrote or oversaw. Rather, there was this awesome cartoon called Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends that ran from 1981 to 1983, and from the second season (with first season episodes then modified to follow the format in reruns), Stan Lee's voice introduced each adventure.

I had no idea who this "Stan Lee" was, but because his voice heralded a half-hour of exciting superhero fun, I always got a thrill from hearing "This is Stan Lee..." in that rich, cajoling tone of his. I was a true believer before I even started noticing creator names in comics or knew who created what. Stan "The Man" was uniquely adept at engaging with his audience and identifying himself with his creations, and with comics as a whole. He's one of few comics creators non-comics fans know of, if not the only one, and all those columns, videos, and movie appearances are, just like his Amazing Friends narration, part of that personalization of comics that took the world by storm in the 1960s, and still rages on today in the popular Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Stan Lee, 95, one of the great geniuses of the American comic book form, 1922-2018; the world shall never know his like again.

 

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