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Following the tragic death of Marvel Comics supremo Stan Lee yesterday (12 November) at the ripe old age of 95, luminaries from the world of music have gone online to effusively praise the role the great man’s work played in shaping their art and life.
Rockers as diverse as Gene Simmons – whose band Kiss were immortalised in a 1977 comic presented by Lee – and Vernon Reid from Living Colour were among the first to share their admiration for the genius nicknamed simply ‘Excelsior’.
Here’s a selection of the most poignant reactions, kicking off with everybody’s favourite probably-tongue-in-cheek rocker Rob Zombie:
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Only got to meet Stan "the man" Lee once but it was a fucking thrill. Marvel comics was one of the best things I remember about being a kid. Thanks for everything. What would we have done without you? #ripstanlee #marvelcomics #spiderman #hulk #fantasticfour
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Stan Lee was a visionary and a pioneer. I owe a lot to him for personally shaping my childhood fantasy worlds, my appreciation for art on all levels, & for teaching me humanness and humility through his wonderfully insightful stories. He will be missed. Long Live FOOM ! pic.twitter.com/coMUHWXGKV— Kirk Hammett (@KirkHammett) November 12, 2018
To Stan Lee: Thank you for making my childhood so much more exciting with your astonishing superhero characters. Thank you for inspiring me to think and dream big. Thank you for the Hulk, Thor, Fantastic Four and many others. You will be sadly missed. RIP.— Gene Simmons (@genesimmons) November 12, 2018
Stan Lee was one of the architects of our childhoods. What he & his band of astounding co-creators did was incalculable. Peter Parker & Spider-Man were THERE for US. If you are a Comic Book Person - the passing of An Age Is Upon Us. It might not be Ragnarok... but it’s CLOSE! https://t.co/b8oZN4LDnI— Vernon Reid (@vurnt22) November 12, 2018
And here’s some of the nicer meme-y tweets, showing how much love Stan Lee accumulated during his time on earth…
A true legend left us today. He created & told stories that touched the hearts of those young & old. Even at the age of 90, he would still engage fans at events with that warm smile.— Playasia (@playasia) November 13, 2018
Thank you, Stan Lee.
Rest In Peace
And always remember,
Face front, True Believers
Stan Lee ... pic.twitter.com/cziL0bUesx— Franse de Castro (@FransedeCastro) November 13, 2018
And just in case you thought everybody online was being uncharacteristically humble and respectful, Goop founder and erstwhile Coldplay muse Gwyneth Paltrow had this moving contribution (later deleted)…
A lovely tribute pic.twitter.com/tYvyhIdWAO— Danny Gottleib (@dgottleib) November 12, 2018
There are probably two reasons Stan Lee’s passing has elicited such an emotional response, in particular from those engaged in the creative and artistic fields. For one, he effortlessly and more-or-less singlehandedly created a whole universe of new characters, ideas and situations. Several universes, if you want to be pedantic about it – all at first painstakingly drawn line by line, then rendered outsized on a billion cinema screens.
That, and his transparent love of the good life, getting stuck in to the party with the likes of Gene Simmons. Never mind writer, publisher, or figurehead… as of now, Stan Lee is nothing short of an honorary rockstar.