Stan Lee, a Life Well Lived
Stan Lee has passed and the world mourns. The internet is full of blogs, tweets, videos and forums about what an amazing man he was and what an extraordinary life he had and rightly so. I want to show my respect by also saying a few kind words and I’ve done my best to focus on an aspect of him I don’t see anyone else speaking about.
The pattern with all great writers, or creative artists, is that although they may create many works of art with many characters they seem to make one standout character and or story, occasionally two. Edgar Rice Burroughs created Tarzan and the Princess of Mars stories, George Lucas created Star Wars and co-created Indiana Jones and like most creative peoples the majority of their other characters and stories have long since fallen into obscurity.
But there’s a second type of much rarer artist who creates a myriad of works all of which become highly influential or popular. All of Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets have stood the test of time as have the films Walt Disney made in his own lifetime. Many would argue that Stan Lee falls into the first category of artist as Spider-Man is his most famous work but look at the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe these last few years, with the movies based on characters like Iron Man and Black Panther very quickly catching up with and overtaking the Spider-Man movies not just in sales but critical acclaim.
Stan Lee was more than just one of those creative people who touched peoples’ lives through his work he changed popular entertainment much like Disney and Shakespeare. He was that very rare and special artist that only appears once in a generation if at all. Stan Lee himself often said that the greatest superpower of all is luck and judging from what I’ve seen of his life I have to agree.
I’m reminded of Shakespeare’s own words from Hamlet; “He was a man. Take him for all in all. I shall not see his like again.” But I myself never got around to meeting him, I have attended conventions where he was a guest but, to my great regret, never made the time to speak with him. If I had I would probably have said the exact same thing every other fan tells him…
Thanks Stan for everything…