Everyone knows Stan Lee as the all-father of comic books, having co-created (along with Jack Kirby) the most famous super heroes in history. He’s also wildly recognized as a stand-up guy, always happy and full of sun shine – an ever constant example of positivity and enthusiasm. But, is he really? If you take into account the harsh accusations from Lee’s former assistant, it would be revealed that Lee is anything but a saint.
On Tuesday, Lee’s former assistant Shawn Lukaszewicz filed a lawsuit against him, his wife Joan Lee, daughter Joan Celia Lee, POW! Entertainment and Fatsalagata. He’s accusing them of multiple labor code violations, wrongful firing and intentional infliction of emotional distress, that included a barrage of insults.
Lukaszewicz says he was initially hired to setup and manage Stan Lee’s booth at the ComiKaze convention in November. That’s when things went south Lukaszewicz. Stan Lee visited the booth and reportedly told Lukaszewicz that he did a “sh*tty job” and the booth looked “f*cking embarrassing.”
Despite his claims of Lee being unimpressed with his work, Lukaszewicz was then hired to be Lee’s full-time executive assistant, “with duties that included launching and managing websites, managing social media for Joan Celia Lee, and running personal errands for the Lees.” For a 40-hour work-week, he was to be paid $40 an hour, but he had to be on-call at all-times and would not receive any overtime pay.
Lukaszewicz claims Lee told him to “get the f*ck out and never ring my damn doorbell again,” when he went to drop off documents and mail to Lee’s house, after being requested to do so by Lee’s daughter.
He claims that Lee’s daughter called him “f**king stupid” and threatened to fire him after he posted an image of her on social media, even though she is the one that supposedly asked him to post the image.
Further complaints according to courthousenews are as follows:
When Lukaszewicz bought a plane ticket to fly east to see his mom for her birthday, Joan Celia Lee asked him to delay the trip so he could help prepare for her birthday party, he says. But she reneged on her promise to reimburse him for his plane ticket and pay for a later flight, and berated him in front of guests at her party by calling him a “retarded *sshole,” he says.
While Lukaszewicz drove Stan Lee to an April meeting with boxing champion Manny Pacquiao, “Stan Lee became very abusive towards plaintiff for driving too slow as Mr. Pacquiao was about to depart to Las Vegas for his May 1, 2015 fight with Floyd Mayweather,” the complaint states.
When Pacquiao failed to show at the meeting, Lee called Lukaszewicz a “f*cking idiot,” and added: “You wasted my time. Now everyone at the office thinks you are a f*cking *sshole,”
Wow, it sounds like working for Lee is not quite the dream job one might expect. It stands to reason, though, that Stan Lee has a public persona and a real life. When he’s out of the spot light, the celebrity switch is turned off and his filter is removed. Still, that doesn’t absolve him of berating an employee with obscenities. Of course, the working relationship with Lee and his assistant might not be as black and white as Lukaszewicz makes it out to be. It’s easy to say it’s just a typical boss/employee relationship and Lee lacked any and all professional courtesy. On paper, that’s certainly true. But, unlike jobs for regular people, assistants are very much in orbit of celebrities personal lives. It’s like working for family. If you’ve ever tried to organize a birthday party or some special event with the help of family members, there’s egos to contend with, a difference in ideas, and often some not so nice words exchanged. And that’s just family, what about friends? We all have people that we are close with that we sometimes talk to in ways that others would think are utterly abhorrent.
Lee is probably like any other senior citizen, having long lived passed the time for patience.He’s a real human being that gets pissed off. Regardless of his age, attitude, or whatever unique lives of celebrities and their assistants have, it is a working relationship. Employees can be incompetent, but no one deserves to be verbally abused in a working environment.
It’s hard to see our heroes be anything less than what we imagine them to be. The real Stan Lee might not be as marvelous as we all thought. That of course, doesn’t discredit his work or the person he tries to be. It just means, he’s as faulty as the rest of us.
Category: Nerd Culture