Stan Lee of Marvel Comics gave several of his characters alliterative names so they’d be easier to remember.
Betty Brant, Bruce Banner, Doctor Doom, Fantastic Four, Green Goblin, Happy Hogan, J. Jonah Jameson, Matt Murdoch, Otto Octavius, Pepper Potts, Peter Parker, Silver Surfer, Sue Storm, Stephen Strange, Scott Summers, Wade Wilson, Warren Worthington III...if you couldn’t tell by now, Stan Lee is OBSESSED with alliteration! Over the years, his constant consonance has developed not only into a personal trademark, but also into an industry cliché! His reasons for using this literary technique are actually threefold:
- He has a terrible memory, so he figured that if he could remember half of a character’s name the repeated letter would provide a clue for recalling the other word. This theory didn’t always succeed though - early on in his career, Stan blundered by mistakenly calling the alter-egos of Spider-Man and the Incredible Hulk “Peter Palmer” and “Bob Banner”! FAIL.
- Alliterative names and catchphrases are more memorable for his readers. Lee believes these should be “like a really memorable advertising slogan. It sticks in your head and you can’t stop humming it. Let’s face it, superheroes are just really selling themselves as products.”
- He just REALLY likes alliteration. Stan has said that he adores not only this sort of wordplay, but the sound of words in general. His penchant for flowery diction makes even more sense given the fact that his favorite writer is Edgar Allan Poe.