Comic book legend Stan Lee passes away at age 95

(photo courtesy of

(photo courtesy of

Allie Boulier

By Allie Boulier


The miraculous legend that is comic writer and cofounder of Marvel Stan Lee passed away Nov. 12 at age 95. Over the years, Lee has graced the public with countless characters of unparalleled development as well as complex plot lines that keep fans on the edge of their seats comic after comic, and film after film.


The dawn of the Marvel franchise, of course, started with comics. Before Lee, superheros were bland, cookie cutter characters, each one completely flawless and alike to the next. As Lee built a fanbase from the ground up, Lee revolutionized the comic industry forever into what is now a popular form of pop culture. Lee gave complexity and multiple dimensions to characters, which were born into films like SpiderMan (2002) starring Tobey Maguire. Although in the early 2000s, technology had not yet caught up to Lee´s vision, the experimentation with green screens and other forms of tech lead to greater movies later.


Lee gave the public blockbusters almost every year as Marvel rose into the film industry, with recent films like Black Panther and the Avengers series. Not only are Marvel films now supremely popular and celebrated, but Marvel also makes a true attempt to be diverse, unlike D.C. comic movies.


Without Stan Lee, I can scarcely imagine what the film industry would be like today. I have often found in times of crisis and great division, Marvel has always given the public a superhero we can all rally around and support together, despite our differences. The characters Lee created are flawed and messy, rather than god-like or reeking of perfection, and it is their internal conflicts that allow us to relate and leave room for understanding.


Marvel’s future is far from over with Avengers 4 on the way, but the Marvel community cannot help but feeling it is the end of an era. With a now less steady future than before, as the threat of Sony taking Spider-Man continues to loom over us, Marvel fans must be reminded what our beloved heroes have showed us time and time again, that in our darkest times, we must come together.


In my own experience, I have witnessed a few film franchises I truly feel are made for everyone, such as Lucas Films´ Star Wars, Warner Brothers´ Harry Potter, Pixar films, and Disney movies. These films and corporations bring large crowds of every age and ethnicity, and sell out at the box office regularly. I feel that Marvel deserves a pedestal with ´the greats´ and despite my young age, I feel I have already witnessed the film franchise of my generation, and it wears a cape.

In his old monthly column, ¨Stan’s Soapbox,¨ Lee left every column with the phrase ¨Excelsior!” as well as in his cameo in Avengers: Age of Ultron. The phrase is Latin for ¨ever upward,” and I for one, cannot think of better words to remember him by.