If you’ve come down with a case of Marvel mania, there’s a museum in Philadelphia where you can sate your appetite for superhero lore, rare comic book art, movie props, trivia, and more. As the PhillyVoice reports, an exhibit called “Marvel: Universe of Super Heroes” is open now through September 2 at The Franklin Institute.
It’s a fitting time to launch the exhibit, since Marvel is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year. The exhibit begins with items from Marvel’s early days in the 1930s, when the company was known as Timely Comics. Marvel’s universe grew and grew over the decades, and now encompasses more than 8000 characters.
In total, the exhibit features more than 300 original artifacts, including many of the movie-quality costumes that were worn by the actors of Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman and Danai Gurira), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), and Captain America (Chris Evans). There are also original artworks, including two covers of The Avengers comic books and the original drawings of Spider-Man’s origin story.
“This global-spanning fantasy franchise that is in everybody's brains begins with an individual working at a drawing board with a pencil and paper—that's where world-conquering stories begin,” exhibit curator Ben Saunders told the PhillyVoice. “That's what I wanted to tell over and over and over again in this show."
The exhibition includes some interactive elements, too. Visitors can take a stroll through the trippy, Doctor Strange-inspired mirror room, or snap a selfie with The Thing from the Fantastic Four. The exhibit also pays tribute to comic book visionary Stan Lee, who died last year. (And if you really want to geek out, there's an online class you can take on "The Rise of Superheroes and Their Impact on Pop Culture," which was partly created by Lee while he was alive.)
Check out some photos of the exhibit below, and visit The Franklin Institute’s website for more details and tickets.