Photo: Erika Goldring (Getty Images)

The controversy surrounding the treatment of comics legend Stan Lee continues to get even weirder and darker this week, with Deadline reporting that the former Marvel Comics frontman is now suing his former manager for, among other things, allegedly stealing his blood as part of a money-making scheme. We reported a bit on the gruesomely vampiric aspect of Lee’s current predicament earlier this week, when accusations against former manager Jerardo Olivarez began to come to light, but Lee has now taken apparent legal action against his former employee, suing him for fraud and elder abuse.

Lee’s suit alleges that Olivarez, among others, took advantage of him after the death of Joan Lee, his wife of many years, coercing the comics creator into signing power of attorney over to him, making massive donations to a fictitious charity in his name, and, in the most grisly part of the claim, having “a nurse inject Lee with a syringe and extract many containers of blood, which he had [the allegedly fictitious charity] later sell in Las Vegas as a collectible for thousands of dollars.” This is followed by one of the more painfully baffling sentences we’ve seen in a legal document of late: “Lee never approved of the use of his blood as a merchandising item.”

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It’s not precisely clear who, exactly, is bringing these charges on Lee’s behalf; the 95-year-old is listed as the sole plaintiff in the suit, but there’s reportedly a whole web of people surrounding him right now with their own motives, aggressively pointing fingers at each other as to who’s actually been mistreating him. It’s not immediately obvious whether this lawsuit represents Lee taking some measure of control back over his situation, or if this is just another turn in an increasingly unpleasant tale.