Magic: The Gathering single-handedly changed the face of gaming, adding a genre, collectible card games, unlike anything that came before. Every gaming convention sports tournaments, and there are now hobby shops all but devoted to this one game. It’s no surprise, then, that M:TG is finally receiving official recognition of its impact on our culture at Seattle’s EMP museum‘s “Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic” exhibit.
Magic: The Gathering artwork set new standards for quality, and the original paintings of card art sell for thousands of dollars, so I can certainly see Magic hanging in a museum. The whole exhibit isn’t devoted to M:TG, however–maybe in another decade!–and will have displays from Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, upstart Game of Thrones, and other culturally significant works.
When I was a kid, only “weirdos” played Dungeons and Dragons, and about the only fantasy “everyone” knew about was Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Nowadays, every week it seems like there’s another fantasy movie opening at the theatre, and The Hobbit is profitable enough to turn into a trilogy even though it was only one book.
I’m still a bit surprised that Game of Thrones merits a place in the exhibit. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a serious fan of the books, and the HBO series is some seriously uber stuff, but I think you should give a work a chance to stand the test of time, and more than series has started off awesome only to end with a whimper (Wheel of Time, anyone?). Anyway, I hope the exhibit goes on tour. I’ll never make it to Seattle, but there are a few museums in my neck of the woods that’d be happy to show it, I bet.
In the meantime, I guess I’ll just fire up HBO, crack open a deck of Magic: The Gathering cards, hug my Gollum plush doll, and settle in for an evening of fantasy mayhem. It should be close enough.
Site [EMP museum]