Stan Lee - The Man Behind the Marvel Machine
What can we learn from the comic book icon?
I’ve been a comic book nerd for as long as I can remember, so it was a pleasure to create this post.
If you’re new here, subscribe below to ensure you receive my next piece in your inbox.
Lessons From the Most Popular Comic Book Creator - Stan Lee
Stan Lee is credited as one of the creators of legendary comic book characters like:
Spider-Man (my favorite superhero next to Batman.)
Anyone who has been involved with the creation of that many popular characters has some secret sauce.
So, I looked into it and found three key lessons we can take from Mister Marvel.
Here there are:
Giving Creators Freedom
Stan Lee created the Marvel Method.
Instead of giving his writers a full script, he gave them a brief synopsis of the story.
This approach gave the artists more creative freedom, making them co-creators of the characters and their stories.
Creating What He Wanted to See
Around 1961, Stan Lee was fed up with the comic book world.
He thought that the industry was creating silly characters he didn’t find interesting, so he wanted to change careers.
But his wife gave him a piece of advice that would change the entire industry.
“Write one book the way you’d like to. Get it out of your system. The worst thing that will happen is you’ll be fired, but you want to quit anyway.”
Stan Lee listened to his wife and ended up creating Marvel’s first family - the Fantastic Four.
They were created as the opposite of DC’s Justice League.
Instead of demi-gods, the heroes of the Fantastic Four were normal people with real-life problems, which was ground-breaking at the time.
How does this newsletter add value to your life?
Grounding Your Creations in Reality
When Stan Lee started working on comic books, DC heroes like Superman were far more popular than the Marvel heroes.
The DC characters were noble and had little to no flaws.
So Stan Lee put a different spin on comic book heroes.
In his own words: “Our superheroes are the kind of people that you or I would be if we had a superpower.”
Lee grounded them in reality.
While DC heroes existed in fictional places like Metropolis and Gotham, Marvel heroes were living in real places like New York.
This approach made them more relatable, leading to the success of the current Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU,) which Lee laid the foundations of over 60 years ago.
He made all Marvel comic books in a shared universe, so the characters could interact in different crossover events.
Simply put, without Stan Lee, there’s no Marvel and no MCU.
If there was a premium tier of this newsletter, what type of content/product would you like to see in it?