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[personal profile] defrog
Stan Lee is gone, and even if I wasn’t late to the game, I don’t know what I could say that hasn't already been said.

My own experience is similar to others of my generation – by the time I started reading superhero comics, Stan Lee wasn’t writing so much anymore, and pretty much all of his creations had been taken over by other writers. But I knew who Stan Lee was via the Marvel editorial pages – “Stan’s Soapbox”, et cetera – and I was aware that he was the guy who had thought up these characters. I wasn’t a fan of all of them, but I did like Spiderman, the Hulk and X-Men, among others.

I’m pretty sure it’s no coincidence that these were the characters that seemed to struggle with an inability to fit into society for various reasons. A lot has been written about how Stan’s greatest contribution to comics was adding a layer of human complexity to the Marvel universe – just because you have superpowers doesn’t mean people will like you or your life will be better. I don’t know if I consciously thought of that while reading Spiderman or Hulk, but it was definitely core to the X-Men comics.

Obviously, not everything he did was great (Nightcat comes to mind – and that Backstreet Boys cartoon). On the other hand, I admired his ability to come up with character ideas almost on the fly – many wouldn't work, but his ethos seemed to be that no idea is too outrageous or outlandish, because who knows, it might actually work.

So yeah, I think he’s earned his rep as one of the greatest visionaries of comics.

To be sure, he had his critics. Which brings me to Bill Maher and his silly op-ed about how it’s somehow Stan Lee’s fault that Trump is president because comic books make you stupid. Or something.

I can’t add much to what Neil Gaiman has already said in one tweet – Maher is clearly trolling with a very old argument that anti-comics people have used for decades, so his argument is not only invalid, it's not even original.

Also, it’s hard to take Maher (who presumably only reads intellectual books) seriously when he goes around claiming that vaccines cause autism.

And so much for Bill Maher.

Nuff said,

This is dF
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