Recently, Scorpio Moon reported here on ComicBooked.Com that Stan Lee has cancelled all of his upcoming appearances. We don’t know why, and I would never want to invade on Mr. Lee’s privacy, but I was scared that more bad news was coming! After all, we recently lost Joe Kubert, so I really don’t want to lose another big star in the comics industry if we can help it.
According to Regina Carpinellli at Comikaze Expo, he’s okay, which is a big relief! Here’s what she said:
On record and honest to God as the CEO of Stan Lee’s Comikaze, Stan is fine and drinking milkshakes like he always does.
Still, all this got me thinking.
I saw the massive lines for Mr. Lee at the recent Baltimore Comic-Con, and I fear too many of those books will all end up on eBay if they haven’t been listed there already. That’s our culture of celebrity these days, sadly. I just hope many more of them actually wanted his autograph to keep!
Now, I know there’s a lot of controversy about how much Mr. Lee did versus how much Jack Kirby (on Fantastic Four) and Steve Ditko (on Amazing Spider-Man) did back in the early days of Marvel. I do think that Mr. Kirby and Mr. Ditko deserve more credit for their part in making Marvel as big as it was back then, but I also want to be sure that Mr. Lee gets the accolades he deserves as well. And I did rag on him when he had his image placed on the cover of a new comic he wrote recently, so I call them as I see them!
I had to consider that I really wish we could find a better way to honor people than to wait until they’ve passed on. I know we don’t want to inflate some already huge egos, but would it have hurt to recognize people like Kirby and Kubert more before they died when they could have appreciated it? I don’t think so!
All this reminds me of one time when I was standing in a comics shop talking with the owner (as I often do), and a young kid (like 10 or 12 years old) interrupted us to ask just who was this old geezer who drew comics that passed away recently. “You mean Jack Kirby,” the owner said. “Yeah, that old guy! He hasn’t drawn a comic that I’ve ever read! Who cares about him?”
The store owner had to physically get between us before I did something I would have regretted later … well, almost regretted!
Sadly, the comics industry is often about “What have you done for me lately?” If you haven’t been producing books in the last five years, you’re histoire, toast, a passing memory.
Then, too, there have been comics creators who have been penniless (or nearly that way) in the latter years of their lives. And this is after putting pen to paper (Yes, that’s how it was done before computers!) literally for decades!
I realize that the industry isn’t all that wealthy, but there must be some way for the comics companies and fans alike to work together to help people who have given us so much joy over the years live out the rest of their lives in as much comfort as possible!
Still, until then, I wish Stan Lee the very best! I want to be able to see him enjoy many more birthdays and watch the fans line up around the block again and again, after all! ‘Nuff said, true believers!