Updated: Jul 13
The Simpsons writers were granted free reign over Marvel's property when creating the promotional Loki (2021-) short The Good, The Bart, and the Loki (2021). Even with the possibilities abundant, the studio stepped in to intervene over one particular cameo.
The Marvel-themed short dove head-first into playing in the infinite sandbox of Marvel characters, crafting clever shorts that poke fun at the Marvel Cinematic Universe and their comic book influence. The only familiar face that was off-limits was Stan Lee himself.
"Only one time," Showrunner Al Jean said in conversation with ComicBook.com when asked if anything was denied by the higher-ups. "It wasn't a joke. We just thought, 'Oh, we have Stan Lee audio from when he was on our show, could we cameo him in?' And they said that their policy is he doesn't cameo now that he's passed away, which is a completely understandable policy. That was their only note and that was, of course, easily done."
Lee, one of the fronts of Marvel Comics, has been in and out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and has voiced himself in episodes of The Simpsons past. While Jean's suggestion may have been denied for obviously respectable reasons, he was still able to share time with Lee in the past. "It's surreal. And I can even quote one of the most surreal moments of my life where I got to have lunch with Stan Lee, and I said, 'Wow,' it was like 20 years ago, 'I'm so excited. I've always wanted a Spider-Man movie to come out,'" Jean recalled, remarking that Lee's response was "so have I."
The Good, The Bart, and The Loki is available to stream on Disney+.