The New Mexico Comic Expo was host to plenty of entertaining panels the past two days. On Saturday, Roy Thomas and Black Lightning creator Tony Isabella spoke at length about their time at Marvel Comics. The two spoke on a variety of topics, including how they got started working at Marvel, the hierarchy of barbarian characters in comics, and the Distinguished Competition.
Of course, if there is going to be a discussion about Marvel Comics, there is going to be a Stan Lee story — especially if the stories are around the time frame Lee had become the company’s publisher. Thomas delivered with a great anecdote about how Stan “the Man” handled a bomb threat.
In the early 1970s, the Marvel offices were two floors below the offices of National Lampoon. At the time, the Lampoon was the cutting edge of comedy. The magazine was filled with wit, toilet humor, and a potential dog killing. As Thomas recounts the story, one day a call came in to the office of Lee. Shortly after, Lee stormed out of the office. He was not running, but he was taking long purposeful strides.
About thirty minuets later, the fire department arrived. Apparently, the Lampoon had published something that led to someone mailing some dynamite to their offices. While they did not take it too seriously (some staff members played catch with the explosives), they did decide it was a good idea to tell their neighbors downstairs.
Thankfully, it turned out to be a hoax and no one was harmed. No verification on the rumors that Michael Scott patterned his managerial style after Lee.