Every Stan Lee Marvel cameo, ranked from worst to best

5. Thor: The Dark World
One brilliant way to disguise Stan Lee’s amateur acting skills? Cast him as a confused old man who lives in a special home. I just wonder how this New Yorker ended up in an institution in Europe. Did he get lost while on vacation?

4. Avengers: Age of Ultron

The most recent Staneo is one of his best, and you can even tell that when seeing the scene en Espanol. Playing one of Cap’s old war buddies works around Stan’s age, and he even gets to drunkenly utter his most famous of catchphrases, the one I stole for the sign off to Cape Crisis. I dare say Stan’s better at acting drunk than he is sober.

3. Big Hero 6

This was a pleasant surprise when I saw Big Hero 6, a Disney film that barely acknowledged its roots as a Marvel comic. The diverse team of science-nerds-turned-heroes is compelling, and it saved one of its best moments for last. Stan Lee is revealed to be the secret super father of Big Hero 6’s rich idiot, and they share a cute moment over the credits. Plus, the CG animation allows Lee to be the most active he’s ever been in a Marvel film.

2. The Avengers
Alone, this scene isn’t all that impressive, but it’s all about the timing. See, Avengers was the payoff of four years of MCU build up, and the city-destroying battle is so attention grabbing, you forget that you’ve yet to see Stan Lee the entire film. You’ve been having too much fun to even look for Stan The Man. Then, just as it’s ending we get a particularly cantankerous cameo that’s the cherry on the top of Avenger’s happy ending. In a perfect world, Jack Kirby would be sitting across from Lee, but I’ll take what I can get.

1. Amazing Spider-Man
Why is this the best Stan Lee cameo? Because it’s a stupendous combination of playing to Stan’s strengths and hiding his weaknesses. It’s a funny scene, but it doesn’t need him talking. It cleverly integrates Lee into the action without demanding he do anything more than walk slowly. And it uses the distracting nature of his cameos to its advantage by placing him in the foreground as the fight happens in the backdrop for dynamic action. Why couldn’t the rest of the film show this kind of film making competency?

So there you have it, every Stan Lee cameo accurately ranked. Don’t worry, I plan to update this in a few months so you can know where the next ones fit in, and honestly, I hope his Marvel appearances never end. I want to at least see this list get up to 50. If you want more comic movie fun, check out this list of the worst comic book movies and a look at free comic book day around the world. Also, if reading about all of these made you interested in seeing the films again, why not buy them through the Amazon links below!










11 thoughts on “Every Stan Lee Marvel cameo, ranked from worst to best

  1. great read – I hope he makes it to infinity war 2 since we all know its gonna have the X-Men and FF as well as spidey and the avengers. would be the perfect send off for the old fella.

  2. Really good list! I completely agree with your choices too. I can only hope Stan’s future cameos will rank high too.

  3. Stan has another newspaper reveal cameo in Agent Carter, but I don’t think any appearances in MCU DareDevil.

    Also I hate his appearance in Amazing Spider-man. When I’m just mindless rambling off things I don’t like about that movie that is definitely one of them. Its so jarring and plays off one of the worst movie cliche’s: “incredible thing is happening around me but my senses are too impaired to notice. lol” And yet #1. Oh well.

    1. In the final episode of DD he shows up in a picture in the police station.
      AoS he shows up on a train.
      Heroes he shows up as a bus driver.

  4. My personal favorite was The Incredible Hulk cameo. Mostly because he stayed silent. I’m not a fan when they zoom over to him while he says some quip in almost the rest of his movies.

  5. Guardians of the Galaxy cameo I thought was the best, because I agree with Zap, it takes me out of the movie when they zoom in and make sure to give him screen time and line. I prefer to have him just passing through in some way… kind of like a Where’s Waldo joke.

    1. I’m not sure who said it but Marvel missed out on a golden opportunity to have Lee in The Collector’s vault. That would have been my favorite by far.

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