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The Stan Lee and Todd McFarlane With Sam Adams

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SWX's Sam Adams stumbles upon Stan Lee and Todd McFarlane at Toys R Us in NYC. SWX's Sam Adams stumbles upon Stan Lee and Todd McFarlane at Toys R Us in NYC.

Each morning, KHQ's team mom, Beverley, has set us up with fun live shot locations for our shows. The Empire State Building. Lombardi's Pizza. Ripley's Believe It Or Not. This morning, we left it up to our viewers to decide where in New York City we were going to go (with Beverley working quietly behind the scenes to get us access). Who knew that between going through Central Park on a horse-drawn carriage and visiting Toys R Us, the toy store would win big?

Don't get me wrong. The carriage ride was awesome. Saul was kind enough to give us a tour of the 800-plus acre park, with his trust steed, Charlie, pulling us every step of the way. Saul told us about the Plaza Hotel and the numerous movies that were shot there (including Home Alone 2). We also found out that Tommy Hilfiger bought an apartment overlooking Central Park for $50 million, and flipped it a few years later for $80 mil. And that a Russion billionaire spent a record $88 million on his apartment. Makes your mortgage or rent seem a little more reasonable back in Spokane, doesn't it?

After a quick bagel breakfast sandwich near Central Park (sadly, we couldn't find the "Central Perk" from Friends), we hoofed it over to Times Square, without the help of Charlie the horse. We made good speed, arriving well in time for our next morning live shot at Toys R Us. We got to see a 60-foot tall ferris wheel INSIDE the store... a 34-foot long T-Rex (fake, but with an imposing roar)... Folks, this place is huge. 110,000 square feet. That's a lot of toys.

I knew ahead of time that Todd McFarlane would be there signing autographs, so that was a lucky break. For those of you not in the know, he played baseball at Spokane Falls and Eastern Washington in college. His "Spawn" comic series was wildly successful in the 1990's, giving him enough money for him to buy millions of dollars in sports memorabilia, including Mark McGwire's 70th homerun ball. If I had to describe him, I'd say he's a lot like me. But with hair. I'm a closet geek at heart... I love video games and comic book movies. Always have. Todd is a geek-sports hybrid. He told me there weren't a lot of guys like that back when he was doing Comic Con (a giant Comic Book Convention), and that it was difficult to relate to fans sometimes because they were so hardcore into comics, but had zero interest in sports. Those Marvel and DC movies have brought comics to the mainstream and made them cool.

But folks, I've buried the lead here. As we strolled up to get some video of McFarlane shaking hands and signing autographs, I couldn't help but notice Stan Lee at the table. THE Stan Lee, ribbing McFarlane with jokes and posing for cell phone photos. The Spiderman creator, now in his 90's, was hamming it up for the cameras, telling everyone to focus on Stan and not Todd, giving his younger contemporary a hard time for having a dozen different pens to autograph with. It was a surreal moment to see these two standing side-by-side in this unscripted moment.

Though I didn't ask for an autograph or a photo, I did decide to push my luck and ask for a one-on-one interview, and Mr. Lee happily obliged. He's a great New Yorker, folks. I asked him when the next Avengers movie is coming out ("soon"). I asked him about his cameos in the Marvel movies (he doesn't decide the role, but he always goes along for the ride). Most importantly, he told me he's rooting for the Seahawks, "because they're the underdogs. So I'm rooting for them, and when I'm rooting for someone, they better win."

No pressure, Seahawks.

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