Stan Lee, Marvel Comics’ Real-Life Superhero, Dies at 95

Stan Lee, who wrote and published a comic book legacy that spans from the Depression Era to the present day, who created Spider-Man, Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk and Thor, has died. He was 95. Lee was born Stanley Martin Lieber in New York City in 1922, the son of Romanian Jewish immigrants, and at the age of 17, he began work as an assistant at Timely Comics, the company that would become Marvel Comics. Filling inkwells and fetching lunch, Lee’s career began just in time for Superman’s 1930s debut in Action Comics #1, kicking off the history of superhero comics. From a report: Lee, who began in the business in 1939 and created or co-created Black Panther, Spider-Man, X-Men, The Mighty Thor, Iron Man, The Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk, Daredevil, Ant-Man and other characters, died early Monday morning in Los Angeles, a source told The Hollywood Reporter. (Joan Celia Lee, Stan’s daughter, confirmed the news to TMZ.) Lee’s final few years were tumultuous.

[…] On his own and through his work with frequent artist-writer collaborators Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko and others, Lee catapulted Marvel from a tiny venture into the world’s No. 1 publisher of comic books and later a multimedia giant. In 2009, the Walt Disney Co. bought Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion, and most of the top-grossing superhero films of all time — led by The Avengers’ $1.52 billion worldwide take in 2012 — featured Marvel characters.

An exchange from one of Stan Lee’s last interviews, which appeared last month: Interviewer: Do you feel like your legacy is secure?
Stan Lee: Absolutely.

Interviewer: What’s on your wish list?
Stan Lee: That I leave everyone happy when I leave.
Interviewer: You won’t leave anyone happy.
Stan Lee: Well, I don’t mean happy that I left. Happy that I took the right path.
Interviewer: You always do, pop. It was just the people around you. It was never you. You were always the good guy, and there were just creeps around you, and it was this town. Never you.

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