The Best Cameos From Stan Lee's Showbiz Career

By Tom Pritchard on at

You might have heard that Stan Lee, the man who helped create countless Marvel characters including Iron Man, Spider-Man, the Hulk, and the X-Men, has died aged 95. It's a sad moment for Marvel fans, especially those who enjoyed seeing him pop up in damn near everything. The self-proclaimed king of cameos has been in a lot of different films and TV shows throughout the years, including those not actually made by Marvel. We decided this was the best time to look at some of our favourites.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

From a fanboy perspective Lee's cameo in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 might be the greatest one he's done, if only because it semi-confirms a long-held fan theory. It had been speculated for years that because Stan Lee was secretly one of the Watchers, given how he was able to appear in different movies as different characters. In GotG Vol 2 it was revealed Lee wasn't a Watcher, but he had been working for them to document important events in history.

Sadly he only mentions MCU cameos in detail, so all we don't know whether he's in the same situation across the other movie franchises. We like to think it is, though.

Teen Titans Go to the Movies

The only cameo Lee made in a DC film came from the company's silliest series. Teen Titans Go to the Movies takes quite a few jabs at Marvel and superhero movies (constantly confusing Deathstroke for Deadpool, for instance), and it makes sense that Lee would appear here. As it turns out it was completely by accident, and he seems horrified that he ended up in a DC movie.

Ant-Man and the Wasp

Probably one of the biggest laughs of the film is Stan Lee's reaction to having his car shrunk down and seemingly disappear before his eyes. The fact that that he takes it in his stride, despite being a clichéd drug reference, marks this as one of his best.

Civil War

Tony Stank. 'Nuff said.

Guardians of the Galaxy (Deleted Scene)

Stan Lee's cameo in GotG is actually quite boring. He appears as a Xandarian trying to chat up a much younger woman, leading him to be labelled a pervert by Rocket. His original cameo was much better, and involved him as part of The Collector's collection. Groot was supposed to come across Lee and upon being inspected he gave Groot the finger - to Groot's shock.

According to James Gunn the scene was filmed using a body double (Lee wasn't available), with a plan to digitally insert Lee's real face. Gunn decided to cut the scene for not really working, and for being too similar to Star Lord flipping off the Nova Corps earlier in the film. Lee would later go on to play a piece of the collection in the Disney park ride Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout.

Deadpool 2

While Lee didn't have a physical presence in the actual film, he did appear in the gag-laden prequel short. For once he gets recognised, and promptly told to shut up.

The Amazing Spider-Man

Another laughable moment, featuring Lee as the oblivious librarian too busy listening to classical music to notice the carnage unfolding behind him. Sadly we don't get to see his reaction to the trashed library.

Fantastic Four

Notable for one of the few times Lee played one of his own creations, taking on the role of Baxter mailman Willie Lumpkin.

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

As poor as this film was, the cameo itself is a meta Easter Egg, recreating a scene of Reed and Sue's wedding from the comics where both Lee and F4 co-creator Jack Kirby are refused entry.

Spider-Man 2 (Deleted Scene)

The theatrical cut only features a minor cameo as Lee pulls a bystander away from some falling debris. The deleted scene is much better, even if he gets the line wrong, and Jameson would have had a field day if he'd seen it.

Big Hero Six

One of his first cameos in a film featuring characters he didn't help create, Lee gets to play a former superhero that also happens to be Fred's father.

Spider-Man: The Animated Series

Playing himself for once, getting to meet the multiverse-hopping Spider-man who promptly leaves him stranded on a random roof.

The Amazing Spider-Man: The Video Game

One of the playable characters in the game, with the same power set as Spider-Man and quipping as you play along. Excelsior!

The Simpsons

In what seems to be Comic Book Guy's dream come true, Stan Lee turns out to be a real pain - especially since he won't leave and later claims he's the real Hulk.

The Big Bang Theory

While the real life Stan Lee seems to do his best to keep fans happy, this one has no patience for Sheldon. Much like all of us, really. Then again you wouldn't like a rabid fan boy to show up at your home when you were trying to watch football.

Lego Marvel Series

Playable in all three series, initially able to transform into Stan-Hulk in LMSH, then later Stan-Hulk, Iron Stan and the Stanbuster in Leg Avengers. He's fully playable as himself in LMSH 2 with the powers of Spider-Man, Thor, and Galactus.

Spider-Man PS4

A short but sweet cameo, and the last one to arrived before his death.

That's but a taste of Stan Lee's cameo-rific career. He's popped up in all sorts of Marvel and non-Marvel films and TV shows, sometimes as himself and sometimes as different characters. While it's been confirmed he has already filmed his cameo for Avengers 4 (and presumably Captain Marvel) that's the last we're going to see of him popping up for a few seconds of screen time.  Marvel movies won't be the same without that.