Stan Lee: The passing of a ‘real-life’ superhero

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Stan Lee: The passing of a ‘real-life’ superhero

Illustration by Megan Stull

Illustration by Megan Stull

Illustration by Megan Stull

Illustration by Megan Stull

Stan Lee passed away Monday morning at the age of 95.

Regardless of if you read Lee’s comics, you probably know him from his role in creating the most popular and profitable movie franchise in history: the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He created the characters, after all.

By creating practically every Avengers superhero as well as “The Fantastic Four,” “Daredevil,” and the “X-Men,” Lee gave the world an amount of joy and happiness that is nearly impossible to comprehend.

Mr. Lee gave us 35 Marvel movie cameos over the years — a number that will climb to 37 when “Avengers 4” and “Captain Marvel” are released. His creation of these superheroes has given the world many memories. To me, the most memorable of these revolve around Spider-Man.

Spider-Man is hands down my favorite Marvel superhero. Without the work Lee put in, I wouldn’t have gotten to witness a near-infinite amount of web-slinging action. When “Spider-Man: Homecoming” was released, it marked the third Spider-Man series put to film. Lee helped produce all eight of the main Spider-Man movie sagas.

It didn’t matter to me whether it was Tobey McGuire, Andrew Garfield, or Tom Holland swinging around the city, saving lives. The character of Spider-Man himself intrigued me from the beginning and helped draw me into the franchise.

Making the everlasting characters of the Marvel Universe is nowhere near all Lee has done for the entertainment industry. In my opinion, his biggest accomplishment is the fandom he created. Millions worldwide have seen and loved his work.

Lee’s creativity and imagination rubbed off on countless people. The inspiration he gave hundreds of thousands — even millions — of people around the world is insurmountable, and that’s what made him into the real-life superhero us Marvel fans saw him as.

I, like many people, am grateful to Stan Lee for the exquisite material he produced. His work ultimately laid the blueprint for an everlasting franchise.

Not a single person could sum up Lee’s life better than himself. In 2007’s “Spider-Man 3,” in one of his many cameos, Lee speaks with Tobey McGuire’s Spider-Man about the superhero being granted with the key to New York City.

“You know, one person can make a difference,” Lee says.

That’s right, Stan, one person can make a difference — and one of those people was you.

Thank you, Stan Lee. Thank you for helping create some of the best all-around entertainment this world could have ever asked for.