Much like how lifeless, Peter Parker found a spark in his life after being bitten by a radioactive spider, fans of Stan Lee too (mainly in India) have the same story to tell. In the late 90s and early 20s superhero films were not a 'cool thing' which they are now.
It was an age when '15-year-olds' would say Harry Potter, Spider-Man, basically, anything fictional was for 'kids'. It's only after Avengers when the superhero craze started. That's why when the most popular superhero in the Marvel comics, Spider-Man was not considered to be an Avenger (yet), a sense of disappointment was noted.
Stan Lee's Spider-Man had a natural attraction which weren't present in Thor, Iron Man, Captain America. One of the reasons, fans went back to watch those films again was to catch up with Avengers, and be alert about the recent trend.
How it all started?
It was after Avengers the entire DC Comics versus Marvel comics started in the studios, of course it earlier existed in the world but only restricted to those who read comic books. Stan Lee who was the creator of the Marvel Universe was extremely competitive and never left a chance to take a dig at DC and its characters, be it Superman's absurd ability to fly or the downfall of the entire cinematic universe and how his cameo can only act as the saviour.
Soon each of these superhero characters began to grow on us, as Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Black Widow. Even the villains such as Loki, Thanos, and their notion about the new world with a lesser population, made us wonder if at all they were completely wrong about their idea of the new world. It was probably the new undiluted blast of pop culture, that turned into the world of technicolour which instantly caught our attention.
At present, Stan Lee's creations don't just exist in comic books, theatres and OTT platforms but also as merchandises with theme parks, T-shirts and toys available at almost every toy store. Stan Lee soon became "the Willy Wonka of the Marvel factory" and he didn't have to go to a foreign land to gather Oompa Loompas. He sketched his characters and script well enough to gather a fan base who would act like his lawyer without getting paid for it.
The dark side of Marvel
Daredevil, Black Panther, Dr Strange, Wolverine are the other side of Marvel comics where stories are more dense and related to real-life criminal activities. A lot of this side of his stories goes back to the time when Lee was born to Jewish immigrant parents. He started from the bottom of the food chain at the pulp magazine business. He went on to become a one-man industry. Later Lee's network was around $80 million.
There were deep shades of darkness and nuance to all the best of the Marvel characters. Hulk was constantly at wars with Bruce Banner (till Bruce learnt to merge with Hulk), Iron Man wasn't just an ordinary superhero who saved the day and went back home but also suffered from the trauma of watching the helpless become victims of his collateral damage or the effect of falling down from the hole in the universe where he was unable to breathe.
Dr Strange had the toughest time coming to terms with his hands. Their powers were more of a curse than blessing, which they had learnt to turn over for themselves.
There was a point of time in his life when Stan Lee became exhausted after churning out semi literate scripts each month and was almost about to quit. His wie had suggested that he should write a book of his own and take the risk. The worst that can happen is that he might get fired and then he had to resign anyway. Lee had them collaborated with the then rival of the magazine National where the editor Julius Schwartz had started Justice League of America.
Stan Lee understood t that this was his chance and created the Fantastic Four. His next character, the Hulk, was inspired by a combination of Jekyll and Hyde and the notion of the misunderstood monster, an example we found in the literature Frankenstein. But it was Spider Man which made Stan Lee the most famous person in the world.
Spider Man's creation
Being Peter Parker was not just about beating Doc Oct, or fighting Green Goblin, but the very idea that even the bespectacled science guy from school can go on to be the superhero and win the heart of the prettiest girl in school was attractive enough to draw everyone's attention. Even today, when Spider Man is dropped from the Marvel franchise, fans write petitions to make a film on him again.
Initially, Tony Stark was meant to be a hated character since he benefits a lot from war, but Lee soon turned him into a hero. Stan Lee made his last cameo in Avengers: Endgame. A heartfelt tribute was paid to him in the credit sequence of Captain Marvel.