DVD Review: With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story – by Jordan Long

What do the ‘40s, ‘50s, ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s and ‘00s have in common? Stan Lee writing kick-ass comics, that’s what….except for that time in the ‘50s when those assholes at the Comic Code stifled creativity, like that Baptist church tried to stifle my dance moves in the ‘90s.

This is a review of the DVD, With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story.

If you haven’t seen a Stan Lee documentary, this is the one you want to watch.

If you have seen a Stan Lee documentary, THIS is the DVD you want to get.

The special features are where it’s at, whether it’s interviews moderated by Kevin Smith, a look at the over 500 characters Lee created or co-created, or his ramblings that wouldn’t fit in the doc.

Some highlights from the extra features include:

  • Kevin Smith (KEVIN SMITH) moderating Stan Lee and Joe Quesada in conversation. It’s 9:44 in length, and it’s going to be way better than that rerun of The Mentalist you’re about to watch.
  • OH! There’s also a section where they go back through the fan letters Stan has kept (which is all of them) and they Skype with the grown-ups who wrote those letters as kids.
  • Even the commentary is riddled with information. It’s like if there was somewhere in the world where everything was at our fingertips and we could easily access it from almost anywhere. Don’t worry guys; I’m gonna work on something like that. Maybe I’ll call it The Web…you know, kind of in honor of Stan Lee. I’ll get back to you on that.

Carrying on.

If you ever suspected that Stan Lee was insincere for some reason, this DVD will change your mind. This man exudes enthusiasm on a 24-hour basis that I can muster only while waiting for my ½-½ sweet tea from McDonalds.

AND the love story. This man loves his life, wife and fans. It’s incredible that this man is 86 years old and is still in love with the world. When he’s 120, I think he’ll still be the same. I don’t have any doubt.

Like I hinted above, the only thing about the documentary itself is that I’ve heard most of it before. It actually felt as if I’d seen the whole thing before. (This is still bothering me, and I’m really trying to figure out if I HAVE seen it before). That’s my only negative about this DVD. (Which isn’t a negative at all if you’ve never seen anything on Stan Lee before.)

Listen, this doc is really well done. What’s amazing is the way they humanized Stan. He’s such a giant star now that you might think that would be hard. One of the best moments is when Joan and Stan have a conversation about their second daughter, Jan, who died seven days after being born. This moment was heartbreaking, and it’s one of the ways this documentary stands above others about Lee.

Other highlights include going into the reasons he created the Black Panther, the first Black comic book hero. The documentary also explores Stan’s Soapbox section. All this s*** was awesome. Guys, it’s just awesome.

Now, I LOVE docs. And I’m not saying this is a crazy Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the Toynbee Tiles documentary, uncovering mysteries we’ve always wondered about. But it’s very enjoyable and is a great, great biography about this man who many have known on a public level but haven’t really seen the humanized side of before.

Watch it…and not on Netflix. Get the DVD and check out the extra features. It’s worth it, Sucka!

I hope I get to see him at many more Cons in the future. Long live Stan Lee!

EXCELSIOR!!!

This is definitely a BUY IT for With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story.  It is available now to own.

(SRP: $24.98, Running time: 80 minutes, Not rated)

by Jordan Long

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