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For Stan Lee, 2014 is turning into a good year. Not only is the 91-year-old writer and former editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics making his debut on ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. next month, but his cameo appearances in the Marvel movies have earned him a place on Forbes’ list of the most influential celebrities of the year.
Oh, okay — the fact that he co-created the Avengers, Spider-Man, the X-Men and the majority of Marvel’s intellectual property stable in one way or another apparently counts as well. “The comic creator is responsible for the characters in some of the biggest movies in recent years,” the financial magazine explained as it placed Lee ninth in its top 10 list of influential celebrities of 2014.
Considering that Lee hasn’t created a new character for Marvel since 1980 — that last character being She-Hulk, co-created with artist John Buscema — and that his subsequent work has been met with less success, Forbes’ placement may seem somewhat curious, especially since he comes ahead of Rush Limbaugh, a celebrity who would appear to wield significantly more contemporary influence over the world at large. But, as Lee’s former creative partner Jack Kirby once famously said, “Don’t ask — just buy it.”
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