Once Upon a Time
In the distant land of Manhattan, Stan Lee was brought into this world. Close to a hundred years later this man has had a more vibrant life than the colors of all the comic books he has ever created or influenced. By the time he was 19, he was working hard to create the comics we know and love. He quickly rose through the ranks, impressing the legendary Jack Kirby along his way. After a few years, War. World War II called and Lee answered. He never went overseas, but he did what he could to help the war effort. Repairing telephone poles and making training videos. His create gifts flourished until the end of the war. Upon his return, he was ready to make his most lasting mark on the universe.
Stan Lee at the advice of his wife took a chance. He threw caution to the wind and created what he wanted. He wanted his heroes flawed, he wanted them to be more real and relatable to the readers. From that idea, he created The Fantastic Four, with his friend Jack Kirby. There they opened a door to a new world where heroes could be like the rest of us, the only difference is that they had powers. And they went on bring to life The Hulk, Thor, Iron Man, The X-Men, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, and of course Spider-Man. Throughout the years creating comics, Stan Lee poured his heart and soul into the panels of Marvel.
For a very long time nothing seemed like it would ever bring Stan Lee down, but with the age of the computer and internet, comic book readership dipped and faded. Trying to stay relevant, Lee and Marvel tried many attempts for movies, TV shows, and phone apps. It wasn’t until Lee finally lost control over his creations that something special finally started to happen again. Marvel Entertainment wanted to make a new series of superhero films. After some fighting Lee was able to get involved. Iron Man was released in 2008 and exploded. Marvel was important and valuable again. Readership jumped up and comics were back on top. For the past 10 years, 18 movies have come out in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and 6 more are planned for release in the next year or so. The biggest mash-up of all of these movies is coming out on April 27 and combine every previous story.
The Fall of Stan Lee
Stan Lee grew a small idea into a massive empire. He is the face of Marvel and at 95-years-old, nothing seems to be able to stop him. Well, it seemed that way. Stan Lee is old and no longer at the top of his game. While his empire flourishes, his personal life falters. Last year he lost his long-time wife and partner. Now he is plagued by financial issues. He lost $1.4 million in a wire transfer error. He had $300,000 taken from him in an unauthorized check. Keye Morgan, in an interview with The Daily Beast, said
When [Stan’s] wife passed away,” says Morgan, “within a day, I saw all the vultures, snakes, leeches, jackals and coyotes all circle around Stan to grab a piece of his flesh. When you’re at your weakest, somebody kicks you – especially when you’re a 95-year-old man.
He has been accused of inappropriate sexual advances, he’s had several dodgy real estate purchases, he’s lost money left and right. While this could be the act of a depressed man at the end of his life, those closest to him don’t believe this to be true. Stan Lee is just getting hit and has a hard time getting back up. Even his dog went missing. It was later recovered by NFL legend Jim Brown, cause why not? But what is happening to him? How are we, his fans, letting this happen to him. The creator of the most iconic heroes for more than 60 years is falling.
The Final Act
While this may be his final act and end in tragedy, there is a chance this is just the end of the second act. He could still rise again with a final fight in his life’s third act. He could draw up the small bit of strength he has left to defeat the villains of his life. At 95 he needs to work fast, we as fans need to come to his aid and get these vultures out of his life. Surround him with love and praise. His legacy deserves to be more than a tragedy.