Friday, May 04, 2007

Da Count - Stan Lee

What better time than the eve of Spider-Man 3 than to express my appreciation for one of my heroes. From the time I was a young boy I was captivated by the stories that flowed out of Stan Lee's pen. Of course, among all of the superheros that I read about, I was most enamored with a young nerdy teenager named Peter Parker who gained super powers and learned the hard lesson that with great power comes great responsibility.

I immediately identified with the nerdy loner with a great sense of responsibility who did his best to fight crime and other wrongs in the guise of his Spider-Man costume, but by day had to face real world teenage pressures like being snubbed by the prettiest girl in his class or being bullied. As Parker matured, he also faced other real-life things that I don't think other comic book superheros faced back then. He had trouble paying the rent, had trouble with his landlady, got colds and the flu in the middle of fighting major bad-guys, and he got an ulcer. Stan Lee was a pioneer of taking a fantastic world and bringing it back to reality -- Spider-Man was one of the very first teenager super-heroes and certainly the first to be so angst filled and have to deal with realistic adult real-world pressures.

Stan Lee not only provided me with endless hours of entertainment through the stories he told and characters he created, (as well as the ones he started and then passed the reigns along to so many wonderfully talented writers over the years), but he also inspired me to create my own superhero stories. When I was really young I used to play with little Fisher Price action figures and pretend they were Spider-Man, Daredevil and Captain America; I passed more hours than I care to count creating little stories about them (while, of course, staying true to the characters I knew and loved in the comic book stories of the Marvel Universe)

Part of the reason I'm a writer today is because of the inspiration that Stan Lee gave me -- that it was possible to tell larger than life stories about real people. That you could have supernatural and super forces meet reality and still tell a touching, moving story with characters a reader could care for.

Thank you, Stan.



lecram sinun said...

Stan is a hero of mine as well. I was partial to Dr. Strange. Nice count there, Mark!

lime said...

most excellent count. thanks for sharing one of your inspirations with us:)