The following blog post contains minor SPOILERS for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Proceed with caution if you have yet to see that movie.
In the latest movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, we have our next cameo from Stan Lee, the co-creator of so many of the classic Marvel characters such as Spider-man, the Fantastic Four, Dr. Strange, X-Men to name a few.
Because of his stature, Stan Lee has made many cameos, most of them humorous, in Marvel movies over the years. In fact, there are only a few Marvel movies featuring Marvel characters that Stan has not had a cameo in.
Fans have had fun speculating over the years that Stan’s cameos were more than just a nod to a classic man who provided us with decades of entertainment. In fact, one specific fan theory suggested that Stan Lee was playing the same character in all of his appearances. The said that Lee was playing a Watcher.
The Watcher is a character that was co-created by Stan Lee (along with Jack Kirby) who is a member of an intergalatic race of giants who record the history of multiverses by observing what would happen while never getting involved. In Marvel Comics, we meet Uatu the Watcher in the pages of the Fantastic Four, who was not very good at staying out of the action.
And now,Marvel Studios head honcho Kevin Feige has conformed the theory. The following clip is from a story at http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/marvel-kevin-feige-stan-lee-cameo-guardians-of-the-galaxy-2-a7707101.html
Speaking at a Guardians press junket, Feige said, according to ScreenRant: “Yes, we always thought it would be fun. Stan Lee clearly exists, you know, above and apart from the reality of all the films.
“So the notion that he could be sitting there on a cosmic pit stop during the jump gate sequence in Guardians was something very fun – James had that idea and we shot that cameo and loved it so much, you know, you see it a couple of times in the movie.
“It wasn’t in for a long time and we put it back in towards the end of the process where he references that time he was a Federal Express agent – we thought it would be fun to put that in there because that really says, so wait a minute, he’s this same character who’s popped up in all these films.”
Now, technically, Stan is only seen with Watchers and he is in a space suit, so it is possible that he is not actually a Watcher as much as an assistant or an informant (whihc is how he is actually credited in the end credits of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.
But think about this for a minute. What does this mean? Stan Lee has had cameos outside of the MCU. He was in the first X-Men film. He was in the Tim Story Fantastic Four movies. He was in Deadpool. The first Hulk. He was in the original Spider-man movies as well as the Amazing Spider-man movies.
All these films could meant that, regardless of studio, we now have a Marvel Movie Multiverse.
Imagine. Sony. FOX. Universal. Marvel Studios. Disney. All connected by one man. Just like in the comics, the Marvel Movie Multiverse has endless alternate realities including several versions of the same characters.
Marvel Comics used to publish a series called What If where the Uatu the Watcher would tell a tale of an alternate reality involving Marvel characters. It seems as if the movies and tv shows from The Trial of the Incredible Hulk to Big Hero 6 to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 may be in the same situation.
Stan Lee has already shot his cameos for Thor:Ragnanok, Spider-man: Homecoming and Avengers: Infinity Wars so we have several Stan Lee cameos to look forward to. Let’s get Stan into Legion!