OPINION: I Stan a legend

Stan Lee leaves behind group of amazing and diverse characters


Photo via Flickr (Gage Skidmore) under Creative Commons license

Stan Lee passed away Nov. 12, 2018, creating one of the most solemn days in any Marvel fan’s life. He was a great inspiration for creating many characters that bring media visibility to people who wouldn’t have seen representation otherwise.

The year is 1961. In the midst of bell bottoms and The Beatles, Marvel Comics launched their first comic book following their rebranding — The Fantastic Four, co-written by Steve Ditko, Jack Kirby, and Stan Lee.

Within a decade of the success of Lee’s first publication, he created many of the other characters we’ve come to know and love, including Hulk, Spiderman, Ironman, and X-Men.

Since then Marvel has grown into the $4.24 billion franchise before being bought by Disney in 2009. Marvel is known for its great success in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and in the comic book industry. Lee has made an equally famous name for himself by creating his legendary cameos in every Marvel movie created.

Lee not only made this style of producer cameos popular and expected, but he should also be well-known for creating so many diverse characters.

[Daredevil and Hawkeye] were the first disabled superheroes published by Marvel Comics.”

— Op-ed Editor Abri Hausman

He made Black Panther who made his first appearance July 1966 in Fantastic Four #52. Black Panther was the first black superhero that hit the markets while Martin Luther King Jr. was rising to public view. Three months after Black Panther’s release the Black Panther Party was founded.

Lee also created the characters Daredevil in April 1964 and Hawkeye in September 1964. These characters were the first disabled superheroes published by Marvel Comics.  

Daredevil is known for being a revered attorney with his own firm who fixes the wrongs of the criminal justice system in his spare time, all while being blind since childhood. He doesn’t treat his disability as an obstacle, but instead as an asset where he can use his heightened senses to survey the world around him and fight.

And many people seem to forget that Hawkeye is actually deaf. He sustained his hearing injuries during battle with his supervillains, but doesn’t let it get in the way of his role as a superhero.

Lee not only created many of the iconic Marvel superheroes we know and love, but he made interesting characters that showed his support for different demographics very early in his career.

He not only hit the ground running, but he set an example for the hundreds of diverse characters that followed.

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