Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Big Bang and Alliterative Aliases
I wonder why Stan Lee isn't "Lee Lieber" instead?

Image Credit: Cliff Lipson/CBS (taken from EW.com [HERE])

STAN LEE appeared last night on the The Big Bang Theory (Season 3, Episode 16 - "The Excelsior Acquisition") and while he really only put in little more than a short appearance, as anyone who has met the man will attest (yes. I have, but that's a story for another time) even a walk-on by Stan exudes a larger than life "presence".

I'm sure I don't need to tell anyone reading this blog that Stan Lee was one/half of the creative-team(s) - along with artists/writers like Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko - who created the Marvel Universe (fairly out of "nothing" - like unto a "BIG BANG" as well).

In fact, as is very important to this blog, is the simple fact that Stan was the (secondary) creative force (Steve Ditko being the true "creative spark") behind Doctor Strange.
Mr. Ditko had the initial concept and plotted most of the early "Strange Tales" appearances, with Stan adding his own over-the-top dialogue and captions to the finished artwork.

Anyway, while Stan was only an extended walk-on (with a few lines of "angry" dialogue) his "presence" was felt throughout the entire episode as the rest of the cast of characters did little else but talk about him and his creations.

One key story aspect of the episode is the fact that one of the show's characters; Raj (which is short for Rajesh Ramayan Koothrappali), an Indian-born member of the nerd/scientist friends, will not let go of the fact that nearly all of Stan Lee's creations (and/or their alter-ego's) have alliterative names.

"Peter Parker, Bruce Banner, Matt Murdoch, Happy Hogan, Pepper Potts, Reed Richards, Sue Storm..." all those and many more are listed off in rapid-fire succession during several parts of the show (along with oldies but goodies; Millie the Model and Fin Fang Foom).
But ONE name made my ears perk up:


So, perhaps while neither as obvious an "appearance" nor as overt a "mention" as might have been received in other recent television fare (see this months-old blog post on those [HERE]), once again Doctor Strange has been introduced to the broader masses via pop culture television.
And on a hit show, to boot.

Still, while Raj's befuddlement on the reasoning for why Stan used alliterative names for his creations is obvious to those who have been reading of the behind-the-scenes early Marvel years (he did so because it was easier for him to remember the names that way), it does make one wonder, if Stan Lee (born Stanley Lieber, but chopping his first name in two to use as a pen-name) really liked alliterative names so much, he could have went by the pen-name of "Lee Lieber" instead.
I wonder how that might have changed the Marvel Universe.
"What if?" indeed.



Anonymous said...

Raj, not Roj.

~P~ said...

Dang. I knew that.

How'd I type it wrong... TWICE!?

It's been fixed.


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