Stan Lee talks about how comics will last forever

stan lee talks about how comics will last foreverStan is still the man. The creator of iconic super heroes like Spider-Man, Thor, Captain America, and The Avengers has watched as a new generation of movie fans and gamers have propelled these super heroes to new heights. With Marvel’s The Avengers earning over $1.5 billion in theaters and coming home to Blu-ray and DVD on September 25, Lee remains a big part of the comic book scene.

Lee actually made the leap into gaming as a playable character in the Activision and Beenox The Amazing Spider-Man game, which serves as an epilogue to Marc Webb’s movie reboot. Lee, who is featured in the new Morgan Spurlock DVD Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope, will be returning to San Diego Comic-Con 2012. Lee will debut his new YouTube channel, “Stan Lee’s World of Heroes” at the convention. He took a few minutes to talk about comics, games, and technology in this exclusive interview below.

What are your thoughts on the opportunities that exist today for aspiring comic book creators versus what was around when you started in the industry?

You’ve now got to be a damn good writer and a spectacular artist to make it today, because there’s more competition than ever before. There are people who’ve written novels and stage plays who are now writing comics, because as I say, they’re hoping that their comic will be discovered. It is tougher, but the field is always open if somebody is a great artist and a great comic book writer.

stan lee talks about how comics will last forever as spideyWhat have digital comics and the Internet opened up for people interested in becoming involved with comics today?

They’ve opened up entire new worlds of opportunities. There are now so many directions we can go even before you’re talking about movies, or even before you’re talking about a comic book. So many kids today, or even older people, are drawing things and writing things. They’re putting them on the Internet, they’re doing them digitally, and they put them on YouTube. They’re just doing things that they hope the fans will discover; things that they hope will become popular, and therefore somebody will want to make a comic book, graphic novel, or movie of it.

What’s it like for you working on the new comic book line aimed at kids with Stan Lee’s Kids Universe?

Oh, I love it. It takes me back many years to when I wrote comic books like Mighty Mouse, Super Rabbit, Bugs, and so many animated comic books and scripts for the young readers. Most people don’t know that, but I wrote so many things for very young children in the early days of comics. I enjoyed doing it. Later on, the superheroes became the most popular thing so I gave up everything else, but I love writing for young children. I love writing things that could be considered modern fairy tales for young kids.

Since these are kids are playing games and are very digitally connected, what role will video games play with projects like Monsters vs. Kittens and Once Upon a Time?

I think they’ll be comic books first. Then we hope they’ll become video games, animated cartoons, toys, and movies. You name it; we’ll try to do it.

Back in the early days, before there were all these other things competing with comics, kids didn’t have as many choices. What role do you see comic-inspired video games playing today in getting kids interested in the traditional print comic books?

It works both ways. Comics get kids interested in video games, and video games–in case a kid picks one up first–tends to get kids interested in comics. Just like the movies today, the super hero movies have made a lot of people who didn’t read comic books turn to comics. People who went to see Iron Man, loved it and had never read a comic, started looking for Iron Man comics to read, and so forth. It works either way.

With comics migrating more and more to games, the Internet, and digital form, what place do you see traditional print comic books having moving forward?

stan lee talks about how comics will last forever the man

I think there will always be comic books. There is something very pleasant about a comic book. You can read it at your own speed. You can carry it; it’s not very heavy. You can fold it and put it in your back pocket. You can show it to a friend. You can collect them. They don’t take up much room. You can have your own little collection of whatever character or series you like. You can go back and re-read them. I think there will always be comics, but there will be so many other versions and forms of them. Digital comics now are evolving, you’ll be able to see comics that move. Not quite full animation, but almost full animation, on your cell phone or your computer screen. I think comics are becoming so pervasive culturally in our world, that they’ll be all over the place. I think the humble comic book, which is where they started, will always be with us to some extent.

What are your thoughts about the role that new smartphones and tablets play in allowing people to see all these new motion and digital comics that are coming out, as well as your new Stan Lee Saves the World Game?

It’s great and it’s just changing the face of entertainment totally. I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like in another five or ten years. Things are moving so fast, but pretty soon I think you’re little iPhone that you carry will be all that you need for no matter what you want. You’ll see movies on it, television shows on it. You’ll play games on it. It will have your navigator. It will do everything for you.

What role do you think potentially people that are growing up in a digital world where now movies and TV and videogames and books are all digital that videogames might play in getting people interested in those traditional paper print comic books?

Well, only in the sense that if you are interested in some characters that you see in one form of the media, you’re interest is liable to lap over and you’ll want to see those characters. If you enjoy playing videogames about the Marvel characters, I imagine you’d then want to read the Marvel comic books and you’ll want to see those characters in the movies and if you enjoy the movies, you want to play the videogames and if you enjoy the videogames you want to read the comic books. I think they all reflect upon each other.

How did you end up launching your own Comic-Con with the Comikaze Expo this fall?

The inauguration of Comikaze Expo demonstrated the mighty appetite and eager response from fans to experience a Los Angeles-based event that provides a variety of comic book and pop culture entertainment. We saw an opportunity to creatively take this event to new heights through our partnership and we seized it.

Emerging Tech

Behind the unsettling sci-fi landscapes of Simon Stalenhag’s ‘Electric State’

The narrative artbook follows the journey of a young traveler, Michelle, and her robot, Skip, as they head west to the Pacific coast through an alternative America torn apart by civil war and the trappings of military-grade virtual reality.
Movies & TV

Stay inside this fall with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Castle Rock'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we've put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in October, from 'The Witch’ to ‘Black Panther’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, subdued humor, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Product Review

It's got game. But the Razer Phone 2 is still crippled by its camera

The Razer Phone 2 will impress with its gaming prowess and 120Hz screen. But if you care at all about taking pictures on your phone, skip it. While Razer has improved the camera, it’s still short of the competition.
Gaming

The 'Fallout 76' beta starts tomorrow! Here's when it starts and how to join

Want to get into Bethesda's Fallout 76 beta? We don't know when the program will launch, but we provide instructions on how to get ready. The game officially launches on November 14.
Gaming

This $8,000 ‘Devil May Cry 5’ edition will make the perfect plutocrat gift

We've had to wait 10 years for Devil May Cry 5, and Capcom is pulling out all the stops for the long awaited sequel. One of the limited editions, exclusive to Japan, costs $8,000 and includes a leather replica of Dante's jacket.
Gaming

Play your games whenever you want with a MicroSD card for your Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch uses cartridge-based games, but its internal storage may fill up quicker than you would think. Here's what you should consider when picking out a microSD card to expand your Switch's storage capacity.
Gaming

A blizzard of big news is coming to BlizzCon 2018! Here's how you can watch

Tickets for BlizzCon 2018 at the Anaheim Convention Center are sold out, but you can still watch the November 2-3 event at home for your all things Blizzard fix. The opening ceremony featuring all the major news is free to watch for…
News

‘Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’ players are upset over server downgrades

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 users have noticed some network issues caused by a significant drop in server send rates from the beta to the retail release. In response, Treyarch has said it will improve the performance in the coming weeks.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ won’t make ‘Save the World’ mode free in 2018 after all

Epic Games has delayed the transition for Fortnite's Save the World free-to-play mode. It was previously scheduled to become free by the end of 2018, just like the battle royale mode.
Gaming

Get $100 off an Xbox One when you purchase ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’

Red Dead Redemption 2 is just around the corner and anyone looking to buy the game with a new Xbox One console should consider heading to GameStop. A deal gives you $100 off the console when buying the game.
Gaming

Leaked ‘Overwatch’ Lego sets include Reinhardt, Winston, Mercy, and more

Target has released images for several upcoming Overwatch-themed Lego sets. The sets include a wide variety of characters from the launch-version of the game, as well as a few famous locations.
Gaming

Strategy guide images show off full ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’ map

The full game map for Red Dead Redemption 2 has leaked via the official strategy guide. Several locations from the original Red Dead Redemption are included alongside new locations.