We all know who Stan Lee is right? He's that guy who is executive producer for pretty much all Marvel's movies and who can't stop inserting himself into the film with random cameos. Oh and he might have written some comics once.
But considering his fame as a Marvel Movie Where's Waldo, we might as well take some time to count down his greatest achievements in the realm of the silver screen. Here's my list of Stan Lee's top 10 greatest cinematic performances.... or just the best cameos he makes in Marvel movies. The first one sounds better though.
10. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
In the midst of the epic spy-thriller that is The Winter Soldier, our titular hero finds himself in need of a costume. And where is he to find one? Why, the exhibition dedicated to him, of course. And who should be playing the hapless security guard that is on watch when this valuable museum piece is stolen? Why that would be Mr Stanley Lieber of course. He obviously got the job due to his excellent work at Berkeley Biotechnology. Although a good CV won't stop him getting fired.
9. Thor: Dark World
(Can't find footage of this one)
It's bad enough being shut away in a home for people who, to put it nicely, don't have all their marbles. But then for another patient to steal your shoe and use it in a demonstration of his theory of how you could stop a cataclysmic event, well, that's just plain rude. What would you do in that situation. Well, you ask politely for your shoe back of course. That's what Stan did.
8. Iron Man
So, you go to a big swanky party and find yourself with a beautiful woman on each arm. You are obviously Hugh Hefner right? Nope, you're Stan Lee and you've just cameoed in Iron Man.
7. The Amazing Spider-Man
In between security guard jobs, our man Stan found work at Midtown High as a librarian. It was a good job, gave him time to listen to his tunes. Then one day a fight between a giant lizard and a kid with spider powers happened and the library got wrecked. I can only imagine how long that took to clean up.
6. Spider-Man 3
Stan Lee makes cameo, gives inspiration message, says catchphrase, leaves. 'Nuff said.
5. X-Men: The Last Stand
And here we have a rare two-for-one encounter. Not only does this film feature an cameo from one Stan "The Man" Lee, but it also features one Chris Claremont. Chris Claremont, as I'm sure many of you are aware is the guy who wrote such classic X-Men tales as Days Of Future Past and The Dark Phoenix Saga. He also penned X-Men #1 (1991) which holds the distinction of being the best selling comic book of all time. So yeah, pretty awesome, but if you don't know it's him, you won't have a clue. No problem for Stan though, who is front and centre with his hose.
Yet another two-for-one, this time featuring the Hulk. Well, the old Hulk, because in the film Hulk, which is about the Hulk, Stan Lee cameos with the guy who played the Hulk in the 70'2 TV show, Louis Ferrigno. And they are both security guards. Considering the events of the film and what happens at the lab they're working at, it's amazing that Ferrigno managed to keep his job as a security guard for the next Hulk film whilst Stan was demoted to "that man who drunk some green stuff". Still, Stan did find other work eventually.
3. Avengers: Age Of Ultron
Another catchphrase heavy cameo. Also a cautionary tale about taking drinks from strangers at parties. Especially if said stranger is an Asgardian God and warns you that the drink is not meant for mortal men. Excelsior.
2. Fantastic Four: Rise Of The Silver Surfer
(Again, couldn't find footage of this one)
Easily the best thing about this film. What they did for this cameo was take a scene straight out of Fantastic Four Annual 3 (1965), where Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the creators of the team, tried to attend the wedding of Reed Richards and Sue Storm, only to be turned away at the door by Nick Fury. Obviously, they couldn't fully recreate the scene, what with Nick Fury not being established in the F4 films and Jack Kirby having sadly passed away a decade prior, but still they got Stan to recreate the scene as faithfully as they possibly could, so that's nice.
1. Fantastic Four
Now, unless you are doing a list of best Fantastic Four movies (which you're not, because all of them are pretty terrible) this is likely to be the only time you ever see Fantastic Four and Rise of the Silver Surfer in the top two spots of a Best Of list. So, what is so special about this cameo. Well, this is the only time Stan Lee has played a character of his own creation on film (unless you count his joking claim that he is playing The Watcher in all of his MCU cameos). In this film he plays Willie Lumpkin, the Fantastic Four's postman, and whilst he's obviously not delivering his customary fan mail, Stan is certainly delivering an excellent cameo.
It’s good to see Stan Lee even if the movie is a dud. Plus, he just filmed four more cameos. Which guarantees at least four new adventures. (We already knew Marvel has more than four projects in the works.) I would like him to swing by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The Man is a living legend and practically the grandfather of comics. Not dismissing the other great writers and artists, but I have to give credit to Stan Lee and his vision. Tim Burton and Michael Keaton’s Batman was next level. Stan launched the superhero genre into the cosmos. Excelsior!
I still think his mallrats camo is the best. https://youtu.be/0Gxo_A5clQ4