Marvel legend Stan Lee and Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling have officially been inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. The Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) announced this year's class of new inductees into its Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame which, in addition to Lee and Rowling, includes the video game series The Legend of Zelda, and Joss Whedon's beloved series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The new inductees will be featured in MoPOP's Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame exhibition later this year.
For Stan Lee particularly, this feels like something that should have happened quite some time ago. The man's influence on science fiction, via the medium of comic books, simply cannot be overstated. During his tenure at Marvel Comics, along with legendary artists like Steve Ditko and Jack "King" Kirby, Lee created some of the most enduring characters, not only in the realm of comic books, but in all of pop culture. Much of that has to do with the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Fox's live-action X-Men movies.
Stan Lee is responsible for the creation of numerous Marvel Comics characters including Spider-Man, Black Panther, and the X-Men. Born Stanley Martin Lieber, Lee began working as an assistant at Timely Comics when he was just seventeen and became the editor soon after, writing every style of comic from romance and westerns to horror. In 1961, while considering switching careers, Lee decided to take his wife's advice and write a comics story to please himself. The story, about four people given superpowers after being exposed to cosmic rays, was called The Fantastic Four, and it began an era of unparalleled success for the newly renamed Marvel Comics. Lee's creations captured fans' imaginations through a combination of relatable characters and the idea of a shared universe inhabited by all of Marvel's characters.
J.K. Rowling has also had an undeniably massive impact on pop culture with the creation of Harry Potter. Her seven novels, which kicked off with Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in the U.K. in 1997, published as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in the U.S., went on to sell millions and win several awards including a Hugo Award and National Book Awards Children's Book of the Year. Warner Bros. went on to adapt her books into one of the most successful movie franchise of all time. Rowling is now involved as the screenwriter in the spin-off series of movies, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which has a sequel set to arrive in November of this year.
The Legend of Zelda and Buffy the Vampire Slayer} are also worthy inclusions. The Zelda series has spawned some of the greatest video game ever made, including Ocarina of Time and, most recently, Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch. Joss Whedon also deserves a great deal of credit for successfully combining genre TV with teen drama in Buffy, something that still has really yet to be topped in the more than 20 years since its debut. This news comes to us courtesy of Newsarama.