[[quoteright:293:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/stan-lee.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:293:[[CoolOldGuy Don't you wish this man was your grandfather?]]]]
->''"With great power there must also come ... great responsibility!"''
-->-- '''Stan Lee''', ''Amazing Fantasy #15'', Aug. 1962

''[[CatchPhrase Face front, true believers!]]''

'''Stan "The Man" Lee''' (born Stanley Martin Lieber in 1922) is a ComicBook creator, writer, editor, "Chairman Emeritus" of Creator/MarvelComics and (co-)creator of just about every significant Marvel character who doesn't [[ComicBook/CaptainAmerica carry a shield]], [[ComicBook/ThePunisher wear a skull on his chest]], or [[ComicBook/{{Wolverine}} have metal bones]]. However, how much credit he deserves for creating them -- as opposed to his artist/co-writer collaborators, especially Creator/JackKirby and Creator/SteveDitko -- is a matter of debate.

To say he's still active today, both in comics and other media, is kind of a mammoth of an {{understatement}}. Among his recent projects, he hosted the RealityShow ''Series/WhoWantsToBeASuperhero'' and the documentary series ''Stan Lee's Superhumans'', and has a [[CreatorCameo cameo]] in almost every [[Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse Marvel movie adaptation]]. He has also gotten into the {{anime}} and {{manga}} business, and is now working on two series, ''Manga/KarakuridoujiUltimo'' with ''Manga/ShamanKing'' creator, Hiroyuki Takei, and ''{{Anime/Heroman}}'' with StudioBONES. He also worked on ''WesternAnimation/TheGovernator'' with Creator/ArnoldSchwarzenegger.

You might not be entirely aware of it, but he has had a [[http://www.youtube.com/user/worldofheroes?feature=watch YouTube Channel]] for quite some time now, and ''frankly'' you have ''no excuse'' to not check it out.

For an examination of his writing methods, see SoYouWantTo/BeTheNextStanLee.

''[[CatchPhrase EXCELSIOR!!]]''
----
!!Notable ComicBook characters created by Stan Lee:

* ComicBook/BlackPanther (with Creator/JackKirby)
* ComicBook/{{Daredevil}} (with Bill Everett)
* Comicbook/DoctorStrange (with Creator/SteveDitko)
* ComicBook/FantasticFour (with Jack Kirby)
* ComicBook/IronMan (with Jack Kirby, Don Heck and Larry Lieber)
* ComicBook/SpiderMan (with Steve Ditko)
* The ComicBook/IncredibleHulk (with Jack Kirby)
* ComicBook/TheMightyThor (with Jack Kirby and Larry Lieber)
* ComicBook/XMen (with Jack Kirby)
* ComicBook/TheAvengers (with Creator/JackKirby)

!!Notable ComicBook characters created by others but extensively written Stan Lee:
* Franchise/MyFriendIrma (created for radio by Cy Howard and Marie Wilson; Lee wrote the comic book adaptation.)

!!Tropes associated with Stan Lee:

* AdamWesting: Done ''hilariously'' in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' season 13 episode "I Am Furious (Yellow)", where he plays a somewhat crazy version of himself. He won't leave Comic Book Guy's shop, breaks a toy [[Franchise/{{Batman}} Batmobile]] in an attempt to fit [[ComicBook/FantasticFour The Thing]] inside it, and even believes that he can turn into the ComicBook/IncredibleHulk.
* AddedAlliterativeAppeal: Smilin' Stan ''adores'' alliterations. Which inevitably leads to...
* AlliterativeName: Peter Parker, Bruce Banner, Reed Richards, Matt Murdock... the list goes on. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], in that Stan was working on more than a dozen comics at any given time when he created those names, and the alliteration served as a mnemonic. Sometimes it didn't work, which is why the Hulk's full name is "Robert Bruce Banner" (one issue called him "''Bob'' Banner" over and over), and why an early issue of ''Amazing Spider-Man'' listed Peter Parker as "Peter Palmer". This was parodied in an episode of ''Series/TheBigBangTheory''.
** He even had this in real life with his brother Larry Lieber.
** He also ended up giving his co-workers alliterative nicknames -- in addition to his own "Smilin' Stan," there was "Jazzin' Johnny Romita," "Adorable Artie Simek," and others.
* AuthorAppeal: Better known for what he ''doesn't'' like in comic books -- mainly [[NinetiesAntiHero excessive violence]] and teen {{sidekick}}s.
* AuthorAvatar:
** In ''Manga/KarakuridoujiUltimo'', the ''BigBad'' looks exactly like him. Even the American ShonenJump lampshades this.
** In ''Manga/{{Heroman}}'', Stan appears as a patron in the restaurant Joey works at who's always drinking coffee.
** He originally created [[Characters/SpiderMan J. Jonah Jameson]] so there would be a character he could play in an adaptation, which ended up never happening despite the numerous adaptations featuring him (and hey, J.K. Simmons played such a ''good'' JJJ).
* BadassMoustache
* BigApplesauce: He's a native, and it definitely shows. ("Excelsior!" is also the New York State motto.)
* TheCasanova: His MarvelCinematicUniverse persona seems to be one of these: In his ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'' appearance, he has two very lovely ladies with him when he stops to give Coulson crap for being a bad father ([[ItMakesSenseInContext It's part of Coulson's cover]]) and he's seen hitting on a Xandarian in ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy''.
* {{Catchphrase}}:
** "Excelsior!"
** "Face front, true believers!"
** "'Nuff said!"
* CityOfWeirdos[=/=]SomeNuttyPublicityStunt: Stan uses these ''a lot''. If something weird is going on in midtown Manhattan, count on seeing a jaded New Yorker who's certain that it's someone filming a movie or "SomeNuttyPublicityStunt."
** He even played one of those in ''Film/TheAvengers''!
* ComesGreatResponsibility: The TropeNamer.
* ComicBookTime: Lee was in charge when Marvel first began to abandon its real-time storytelling in favor of [[FleetingDemographicRule "Marvel time"]] in 1968. The statement that comics do not represent change, but "the illusion of change" is usually attributed to either him or Marv Wolfman.
* CoolOldGuy: So much so that he is the page's image.
* CoolShades: One really can't imagine Stan the man without his dark specs.
* CreatorCameo: Stan has always enjoyed this trope, both in the comics themselves and elsewhere. It's been joked that he has the superpower to appear in any media, so observe:
** He even cameos in [[{{Anime/Heroman}} anime that somewhat involved him]], too.
** In ''[[Manga/KarakuridoujiUltimo Ultimo]]'' he's actually the ''BigBad''!
** He appeared as a bus driver in ''{{Series/Heroes}}''.
** He's appeared in a number of Creator/MarvelComics as himself:
*** Most famously, Stan showed up at the wedding of [[ComicBook/FantasticFour Reed Richards and Sue Storm]] with Jack Kirby -- only to be denied entry!
*** Stan showed up (with artist Stan Goldberg) in one ''ComicBook/MillieTheModel'' story, as the creators of a comic book starring Millie.
*** In 1997, almost every Marvel Comics series had a special issue as part of a campaign called ''Marvel Flashbacks''. Stan appeared in each story as the {{Narrator}}.
*** A series of 2006 one-shots called ''Stan Lee Meets'' (e.g. ''Stan Lee Meets [[ComicBook/FantasticFour the Thing]]'', ''Stan Lee Meets SelfDemonstrating/DoctorDoom'', etc.) was built around this trope.
*** Shows in Vol 1 on MarvelMangaverse along with fellow creator Creator/JackKirby as one of Captain Marvel's neighbors.
** He has contractually-obliged cameos in almost every movie based on one of his works, and usually appears in Marvel movies he ''isn't'' contractually obliged to get cameos in. As for his cameos:
*** ''Film/SpiderManTrilogy'': In 1, a heroic bystander who saves a kid from falling debris. In 2, another bystander. In 3, a bystander who poetically muses about Spider-Man to Peter in the beginning.
*** ''Film/{{Hulk}}'': A security guard getting into an elevator with Lou Ferrigno.
*** ''Film/TheIncredibleHulk'': The civilian who is poisoned by Bruce Banner's irradiated blood in the beginning. Considering how his ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' persona is a CloudCuckoolander who thinks he can actually turn into Hulk like described below, it's amusing to think him actually doing so in the movie as well.
*** ''Film/{{Daredevil}}'': A man reading a newspaper who almost walks out into traffic only to be stopped by the blind kid Matt Murdock.
*** ''Film/FantasticFour'': Willie Lumpkin, the Baxter Building's mailman. In ''Rise of the Silver Surfer'' he plays himself trying to get into the wedding, a CallBack to the same thing in the actual comics.
*** ''Film/IronMan'': He plays a person who was mistaken for Hugh Hefner by Tony. In ''Film/IronMan2'' he is mistaken for Larry King. Whether he is actually supposed to be these people is unknown. And in ''Film/IronMan3'' he appears in a blink and you'll miss it moment as the judge for the Beauty Contest on one of the screens in the news van that Tony temporarily hijacks.
*** ''Film/{{Thor}}'': He plays a New Mexico local with a truck trying to pull Mjolnir from its spot. Credited as Stan the Man.
*** ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger'': He plays an Army general in a crowd who loses the opportunity to see Rogers because he left on another mission, but mistakes the messenger for Capt. "I thought he'd be taller." This is a semi-exception as, while Lee didn't create the character, he ''did'' serve as Timely Comics' editor during the Golden Age, not to mention introducing Cap to the Silver Age and creating Cap's trademark move of throwing his shield. He appears again in ''[[Film/CaptainAmericaTheWinterSoldier The Winter Soldier]]'', this time as a Smithsonian guard who laments how he's going to be fired upon discovering that Cap stole his outfit back.
*** ''Film/XMen'': In the first film, he appears as a random beachgoer who watches Senator Kelly emerging from the ocean. In ''Film/XMenTheLastStand'', he appears in the beginning of the film as a neighbor of a young Jean Grey watering his lawn (a scene in which fellow X-Men writer Creator/ChrisClaremont also cameos). As an aside, he couldn't make a cameo in ''Film/TheWolverine'' because of the film's overseas filming in Australia and Japan and deliberately sacrificed a cameo in ''Film/XMenDaysOfFuturePast'' (filmed in Montreal, Canada) for attendance at [[FanConvention Fan Expo 2013]] at Toronto, Canada.
*** ''Film/TheAvengers'': Near the end of the film, Stan shows up as a man playing chess in the park, who is interviewed by a news crew regarding the events of the movie's finale. His character believes it all to be a hoax. He also pops up in one of the deleted scenes as a guy at a cafe who alerts [[CluelessChickMagnet Cap]] to the waitress's interest.
*** ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan'': During [[spoiler:Spidey and the Lizard's fight]], he plays an oblivious librarian who listens to classical music with noise-cancellation headphones [[spoiler:while the fight goes on behind him]]. He reprises the cameo in ''WebAnimation/HowItShouldHaveEnded's'' [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LiV7Xs2cvqg episode on the movie]] [[spoiler:where he blames the Avengers for the mess and warns them he's got his eyes on them]].
*** ''Film/ThorTheDarkWorld'': As a patient at a mental institute [[spoiler:with Dr. Erik Selvig]]. Credited as himself.
*** ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan2'': One of the audience members of Peter's high school graduation. He spots Peter coming in while wearing his Spider-Man mask and exclaims "He knows that guy!" (He also appears in an ad for the U.S. Mail as a projectionist for [=ASM2's=] premiere, who is saved when Spidey helps deliever the film cannister.).
*** ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy'': He pops up as a Xandarian trying to pick up a lady. Credited as the "Xandarian Lady's Man".
** He appears as himself in the series finale of ''WesternAnimation/SpiderManTheAnimatedSeries'' when Madame Web brings together several Spider-Mans from alternate universes, one of whom is an actor who plays him in the real world. His wife Joan Lee voiced Madame Web, and the animated Stan asks, "Who is that exotic woman?" when he sees her.
** He voices a dock worker who's also modeled after him in ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderMan''.
** He plays Stan the [[AlmightyJanitor Janitor]] in ''{{WesternAnimation/Ultimate Spider-Man}}''
** In ''WesternAnimation/SpiderManTheNewAnimatedSeries'', he voices a hallucination urging Peter to forsake Spider-Man.
** Also showed up in ''Film/{{Mallrats}}''. One of the first few times he did cameo in a movie that wasn't based on a Marvel property.
** He appears in every Marvel-themed episode of ''WebAnimation/BadDays'', and eventually starts making cameos in episodes focused on characters not created by Marvel.
** A ''WesternAnimation/RobotChicken'' sketch about a musical starring the Avengers has him play the piano, and also share a fact that adds a touch of irony to shipping Black Widow and Hawkeye.
** He was also in the ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'' crossover special, [[WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerbMissionMarvel Mission Marvel]] as a Hot Dog Vendor. Of course, the stand was labeled "Excelsior Hot Dogs".
** He's the narrator for ''VideoGame/SpiderManShatteredDimensions''.
** He appears in the ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'' episode [[Recap/AgentsOfSHIELDS1E13TRACKS T.R.A.C.K.S.]] as a passenger on the train that the team is infiltrating.
** ''[[VideoGame/LegoAdaptationGame LEGO Marvel Super Heroes]]'': Several LEGO games have a mechanic where the player can rescue someone in peril as a level objective. In the ''Marvel'' game, that "someone" is ''always'' Stan. Perform all the rescues and he's unlocked as a playable character.
* DeadpanSnarker: Like you wouldn't believe. As shown [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5sQe8bVPIs: here]] and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmJ1nrNAZ2M: here]]. The videos are debates for DC's ''VideoGame/InjusticeGodsAmongUs''. Let's just say that we now know where Spider-Man got it from.
* FanNickname: He's known as "Stan the Man" to his fans. Some movies he's been in, such as ''Film/{{Mallrats}}'' and ''Film/{{Thor}}'', even credit him as such.
* GrumpyOldMan: Often portrays himself this way [[PlayedForLaughs for humor]], such as in his "Stan's Rants" series.
* HappilyMarried: To his wife Joan, almost to the point of SingleTargetSexuality.
* HistoricalVillainUpgrade: Frequently gets this from partisans of co-creators like Creator/JackKirby and Steve Ditko -- though admittedly he's never been good at sharing credit (then again, neither were Kirby and Ditko).
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Inverted -- he ''[[InvokedTrope caused]]'' this with an [[VerySpecialEpisode anti-drug comic]] (commissioned by the US Government) that UsefulNotes/TheComicsCode Authority refused to approve due to arcane language that did not permit any portrayal of drugs, whether positive or negative. [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome He ran it anyway]], and the CCA ended up looking like idiots. The CCA very quickly rewrote the Code to allow negative or cautionary portrayals of drug use, inadvertently helping to usher in UsefulNotes/TheBronzeAgeOfComicBooks. More than likely as a result, the influence of the Code itself began to wane in the following decades (eventually leading Marvel -- among other companies -- to abandon it altogether).
* InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt: "Stan Lee Presents" appeared on all Marvel issue titles for decades (because he was Marvel's publisher at that time, though not a writer except for the occasional special project).
* {{Jerkass}}: Stan often portrays ''himself'' as a bit of a Jerkass in comics where "Stan Lee" is a character. Stan has also said (presumably at least somewhat in jest) that he based legendary jerkass J. Jonah Jameson on himself, or at least the way he thought comics readers imagined him. He was also kind of crusty when he appeared on ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'' (then again, Sheldon did show up at his house and promptly went inside of it without his permission).
** Taken to its logical conclusion where he's the BigBad of ''[[Manga/KarakuridoujiUltimo Ultimo]]''.
** And then there's his role as "principal Stanley" in ''ComicBook/MiniMarvels'', where once Spidey starts angsting -- justifiably -- about his status as a ButtMonkey, causes Stan to look awkward once he mentions "who decided this to happen to me?".
** Ascends in ''Series/XPlay'', where "Roger the Stan Lee Experience" recounts tales of doing Jack Kirby's wife and stealing credit for Kirby's success.
** Also happens in his guest spot on ''Series/{{Chuck}}'' - where it's implied that his whole career has been some sort of CIA operation.
** Likewise his cameos on ''WesternAnimation/RobotChicken''.
** Let's not forget, that as nice as Stan Lee is, the characters he helped to create and wrote for had very, very, very bad things happen to them.
* KidSidekick: He doesn't like the trope and has likened it to endangerment of minors -- hence the death of ComicBook/BuckyBarnes. He totally subverts this trope later on with [[ComicBook/FantasticFour Johnny Storm]] being a team member rather than just a sidekick. And, ultimately, ComicBook/SpiderMan being the first lone teen super hero of his kind. [[HypocriticalHumor He also admits how hypocritical this is]].
** Considering this, though, one wonders how he allowed Rick Jones to be this to the Avengers in the early stories.
* LaserGuidedKarma: The foundation of several of his superheroes' origins.
* LargeHam: His public persona.
* ManChild: One of his appearances on ''WesternAnimation/RobotChicken'' portrayed him as this. [[SelfDeprecation With him providing the voice]], no less.
* RealLife/MeanCharacterNiceActor: See {{Jerkass}} above.
* {{Narrator}}: Given half a chance.
* TheNicknamer: Responsible for nicknaming the majority of the Marvel Bullpen and characters.
** And of course, for the readers and all the fans, Marvelites.
* PurpleProse: A peerlessly pounding pantheon of pulse-poundingly purple prose! Nobody does it better, true believers!
* RunningGag: Whenever he writes a letter to the letters page of a Marvel Comic, the traditional reply by the editor is always, "Stan ''who''??"
* SelfDeprecation: Many times. See {{Jerkass}} above. He also appeared in an episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', where he acts like a CloudCuckoolander:
-->'''Bart''': Stan Lee came back?\\
'''Comic Book Guy''': Stan Lee ''never left''. I am starting to suspect his mind is no longer in mint condition.
** Then...
--->'''Stan''': ''(After seeing Homer go on a minor rampage where he coincidentally got green paint all over him)'' He's not the Incredible Hulk! ''I'M'' the Incredible Hulk! ''(Yells and tries to Hulk Out)'' C'mon change dammit! Grrr, I did it once before!\\
'''Comic Book Guy''': Oh, please; you couldn't turn into Bill Bixby...\\
'''Stan''': ''(Yells and tries to Hulk Out again)''\\
'''Comic Book Guy''': [[SarcasmMode You almost had it that time]].
* TakeThat: In his ''[[ComicBook/JustImagineStanLeeCreatingTheDCUniverse Just Imagine]]'' series, he makes [[Characters/{{Batman}} Robin]] a bad guy. Knowing how he hates {{sidekick}}s, doing that to the character that popularized comic book sidekicks would seem more like this than just trying to make him a complex character.
** In his recent colab with WebAnimation/HowItShouldHaveEnded, he gave his views on how certain films should've ended. He then shows three more, each showing him interrupt Creator/GeorgeLucas while he's writing each of the Star Wars prequels, then tossing the script of each into the fireplace.
* TheCameo: He appears in ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy'' as a Xandarian ladies' man. Not a CreatorCameo in this case, as he was not one of the creators of that comic.
** He also bizarrely shows up in ''ThePrincessDiaries 2'', years before Disney bought Marvel.
* VillainDecay: While his heroes and writing style are still iconic today, his storytelling style is also somewhat infamous for really introducing a lot of this to Marvel villains -- he'd have them say things like "'''This''' time my '''brilliant plan''' will '''destroy''' those '''''[[LargeHam meddling heroes!!!]]'''''" without any sense of irony, even after the villain ''listed all the times they'd already gotten stomped''. In the early 1960s, it still kind of worked; by 1969 or so, [[{{Narm}} not so much]]. Much of his own later work -- not to mention a great deal of comicry that followed in his footsteps -- had to spend time fighting [[TropeCodifier the villainous cliches]] he himself constructed.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: The entire point of ''ComicBook/JustImagineStanLeeCreatingTheDCUniverse''.

----
-->''"[[CatchPhrase ...nuff said!]]"''
----