Always popping up in the most unexpected places, Stan Lee pulled off another semi-secret cameo, this one in Honda's Super Bowl ad for its revamped CR-V. Using the tag line: “Chase your dreams!” Honda assembled a group of celebrities, each appearing as a version of their high school selves. Then, using voiceovers, they discuss how the viewer might tackle his or her dreams.
Lee's voice-over is based on his role at the center of the creation of the Marvel Universe:
"If you want to make a universe, make a universe!"
Other celebrities in the Honda ad include, among others: Robert Redford, Magic Johnson, Steve Carell, Missy Elliot, and Viola Davis.
If Lee looks exceedingly young in the photo, it is because he graduated from DeWitt Clinton High School in 1939, not yet 17-years old. Since he grew up in the tragic days of the Great Depression, Lee's mother Celia pushed him to skip grades so that he could graduate and enter the workforce.
Soon after graduation, Lee joined Timely Comics. Within a year, the young man became its defacto editor-in-chief (though he didn't use that title) and art director, despite the fact that he was still a teen.
The urge to work and help his family in a time of need explains how the man behind Marvel got his start. The comic book world, and later American popular culture, would never be the same...