Stan Lee


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An obvious topic, but without Stan Lee, a good portion of what Marvel is today wouldn't exist. He is the man who created Spider-Man, the Silver Surfer, the Fantastic Four, and so many other super heroes.

This next portion is from

It was important that Lee's heroes lived in the real world, and not in Gotham City or Metropolis, because they were real people. That is, Marvel Comics imagined how real people might act if they suddenly gained superpowers -- confused, conflicted and not necessarily eager for the responsibility. They were a departure from that straight-arrow hero of the Golden Age, Superman. The next age belonged to Marvel. And Stan Lee ushered it in with his creations.

The Marvel Age brought its own sensibility and vernacular, expressed by characters who developed through their adventures instead of merely bouncing over tall buildings in a single bound from one escapade to the next. Marvel's heroes were tragi-bombastic, beset by every variety of psychological affliction, but usually smart-assing their way through it. Lee invented the vocabulary and the attitude of the modern superhero, placing his characters and their complex stories in a vivid, literary landscape. Lee was also a principal architect of the modern comic book, a major signpost in popular culture and one of the great American art forms of the 20th century.

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