It’s a sad day for comics, my friends. Today Stan’s bride of 70 years, Joan Lee, passed away at the age of 93. “93?”, you may ask… “isn’t that a full and long life?” Sure it is. It’s a great run. I am reflecting on the gift that she gave all geeks, and that gift was being the impetus for bringing about the “Marvel Age” of comics.
Stan was ready to leave his position at the company, then called “Atlas” I believe, and told his wife he had had enough. She told him to do one last story, and to tell it the way he saw fit. That cosmic nudge created a multiverse of characters, and brought a failing company back from the ashes. Not only did this ignite the creation of new heroes and titles, it also bolstered the whole industry. Even DC was feeling the pressure and some of their top characters were heading dangerously close to the chopping blocks.
There is nothing better than competition and a great rivalry to bring a faltering industry back from the brink. We can point to Stan, or Jack, or anybody else and heap praise upon them… and we wouldn’t be wrong. BUT, if we drill down deeper we can find that Marvel Universe “Big Bang” moment in the simple words of encouragement of Joan Lee.
Without Joan, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. The world of geekdom would probably look far different than it does now.
She was the Mother of the Marvel Age. She shall be missed.
Thank you, Joan.