Stan LeeThe panel sounded like it was supposed to be a retrospective of his life. Instead it was mostly a conversation between Joe Quesada and Stan Lee. Once things were set up, the audience was able to ask questions as well. This was the first time I had seen Stan Lee in person, and he comes across as a genuinely nice man. He was constantly laughing, half the time at himself. I was sitting in the back of a huge room filled with people and somehow I still found myself being drawn to the man. He has such an infectious smile and warm personality it would be difficult to not like him.

Here are a few random facts that I learned about the living legend.

  • While he may have created Spider-Man, he gives credit for the webs to Steve Ditko. The original idea was for Spidey to climb on walls only.
  • Galactus was another of his great creations, but all credit for the Silver Surfer has to go to Jack Kirby. He passed Galactus ideas to Kirby and was surprised to see the Surfer in the finished artwork.
  • When growing up he wanted to be an actor. For a while he was in an acting troupe called the Federal Theater, which was sponsored by the government. Though in a different location, Orson Welles was also in the Federal Theater. He gave up acting to go to comics which paid better.
  • If he couldn't be an actor, then advertising was another option. Every Marvel comic was his personal billboard and he used them to market his slogans like Make Mine Marvel and The Merry Marvel Marching Society.
  • His poem God Woke is now being made into a motion picture.

    Apparently Marvel was one of the first comic companies to do multi-part stories instead of having each issue be completely self-contained. When asked why this was he stated that it was entirely due to laziness as single stories are harder to write than one long story. He continued by saying that some of the most important decisions we ever make in life are due to laziness or selfishness. This was all said with a big grin on his face.

    When asked about the least favorite character he has ever created, he chuckled and said that he doesn't have a least favorite. He claimed to have never created a bad character, and that at the time he was his own editor, so he didn't make himself make any changes. Again, this was all said while smiling and laughing.

    I am glad to have been able to sit through this panel. I don't remember seeing Stan Lee do that many shows, so it will really make this weekend stand out knowing that I got to see "The Man" in person.