The voice on the recording was unmistakably Stan Lee — the raspy baritone of the nonagenarian that’s acquainted from his trademark film cameos.
“I believe you’re the dumbest white girl I’ve ever identified!” Lee is screaming, apparently at his grownup daughter, J.C.
“F–ok you, Stan!” she fires again.
In one other, Lee is advised that J.C. has phoned to inform him she loves him. “F–ok, she doesn’t know what love is,” Lee responds. “I don’t should be upset each f–king time she calls.”
The recordings, made within the last years of Lee’s life by his ex-manager, maybe secretly, will possible shock his followers who solely know him because the ebullient, catchphrase-spouting face of Marvel Comics. Lee died in 2018.
The tapes are revealed within the new e book “True Believer: The Rise and Fall of Stan Lee” (Crown) by Abraham Riesman, out Tuesday. The gloves-off biography goes behind Lee’s jovial, public face to reveal a person who was distant, troubled and at occasions unscrupulous.
“It’s not about tearing him down,” Riesman advised The Put up. “The message is, there are not any superheroes.”
Maybe no narrative can be extra disturbing than that of Lee’s relationship with his daughter, now in her 70s.
Joan Celia (J.C.) was born in 1950 to Stan and his spouse Joan when Lee was working at Marvel’s Midtown New York workplaces. The couple later had one other daughter who died a couple of days after delivery, and maybe due to that tragedy, they doted on J.C.
Lee began as an assistant at his relative’s comedian e book firm and whereas nonetheless a teen, was put accountable for the entire thing. Collectively with artists like Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, he would go on within the 1960s to create a pantheon of standard heroes, together with Spider-Man, Iron Man, The Hulk and Black Panther.
J.C. seems to haven’t had the identical focus and drifted by life. She initially needed to behave and attended drama college, earlier than dropping out. She went to The College of Visible Arts for a pair semesters. She had an “embarrassing” stint as a Marvel receptionist. She talked of releasing a Christian report.
When the Lees moved to California in 1980, J.C. went with them. Lee finally purchased her a home, and she or he took up artwork, producing giant tapestries and “throwing pot-hazed events,” the creator writes.
J.C. would quickly develop a popularity for wild spending.
Late in his life, when Lee was noticeably frail, his brother requested him why he nonetheless appeared at comedian conventions, regardless of his reported $50-$70 million fortune.
“I want the cash,” Stan Lee advised his brother. “My spouse spends loads, and my daughter’s even worse.” “Stan firmly noticed himself as the one factor standing between J.C. and destitution,” Riesman writes.
In one other of these late-in-life recordings, J.C. yells at Lee, “What have you ever executed to your daughter?” and “You stopped my bank cards!”
One supply within the e book says J.C. would name her mother and father as much as 50 occasions a day, screaming at them “for not giving her sufficient cash or alternatives.”
Throughout a quick telephone name with Riesman, J.C. defended her spending. “Let’s simply say I purchased a pair of sneakers or I purchased thirty pairs of sneakers. Is it anyone’s enterprise?”
Whether or not it was over cash or one thing else, tensions had lengthy simmered between mother and father and daughter.
In a candid dwelling video from the 1980s, J.C. says, “There is no such thing as a yelling [between my parents]. However after I come into the image? After I come into the image . . .” she trails off, clearly implying that after she arrived every part modified.
One affiliate of Lee’s confirms this level within the e book, saying that dealing with J.C. was the “fear of [Stan and Joan’s] lives.”
In his last years, an enfeebled Lee turned caught in a battle amongst varied bodyguards, attorneys, managers and J.C., as ugly accusations of lacking cash and abuse splashed throughout the tabloids.
A kind of events, Lee’s former supervisor, Keya Morgan, offered the edited audio recordings to Riesman. It’s unclear what his motivation for sharing the tapes now’s, but it surely needs to be famous Morgan was charged in 2019 with elder abuse associated to his relationship with Lee. He pleaded not responsible.
In a video offered by Morgan, Lee may be seen speaking to somebody recognized as a “physician.”
“She’s schizophrenic; she’s bought paranoia,” Lee says of his daughter. “I’ve tried, for a lot of, a few years, beginning once we lived in New York, to get her assist, and by no means may discover any. And yearly, day by day, she simply grows worse and worse and worse.”
In 2014, in line with a witness quoted within the e book, J.C. bodily attacked her mother and father after they gave her a leased Jaguar for her birthday, as an alternative of shopping for the automotive outright.
“I’ve had it, you ungrateful bitch!” Lee supposedly yelled at her.
In one other of the audio snippets, a distraught Lee confesses that his daughter “at all times makes me wanna kill myself.”
Riesman says he understands the followers who’re upset by this unflattering glimpse of the superhero idol.
“It’s actually arduous to say what an individual’s true self is,” he says. “We’re all various things to totally different individuals.”
J.C. inherited all of Lee’s fortune, in line with the e book, and has stated she was engaged on a superhero referred to as Filth Man.
As for Lee, if nothing else, he’s now freed from any earthly troubles — familial or in any other case.
“If I died right now, that’s high-quality with me,” he says in one other of the recordings. “There’s nothing that excites me anymore.”