Days of Comics’ Past

By Dylan Haslam

Over the years, Edmonton’s Telus World of Science has been home to some of the coolest exhibits imaginable. From Body Works to Harry Potter, the exhibits that make their stop in Edmonton never fail to disappoint. With content that Marvel fans of all generations can appreciate and relate to, the current Marvel exhibit is no exception. With original art found in some of the best Marvel Comics, props from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and some props from the various Marvel series produced on Netflix, this exhibit is guaranteed to make your day. Marvel is a name known by all and has continued to grow exponentially in popularity. Through its countless movies and continuing comic series Marvel has gained such a massive fan base, that adding an exhibit of this caliber is just gravy. I had the privilege of visiting this nerd utopia, and I can honestly say that as a comic fan, I was brought to the verge of tears at the majesty and detail of the exhibit that I found myself standing in. In this article, I will provide the most detailed reasoning as to why, as a fan of Marvel, you owe it to yourself and the industry to visit this exhibit straight out of the Marvel vault. I assure you that while I will be talking about highlights of the exhibit, I will have minimal amounts of spoilers as to what is present in the exhibit hall.

As I walked in, I was cloaked by pure nostalgia. I was surrounded by memorabilia and other pieces of Marvel Comic history, and I could not have been happier. It was refreshing to see fans of all ages walking around with their children and sharing stories of their comic-filled lives. Grandparents, parents, and children were brought together by something that has brought joy to their lives. With various facts and other information on the wall, a clear picture of Marvel’ s history was painted, allowing families to bond with each other. The exhibit, as a whole, contained statues of various heroes that you can pose for photos with as well as original art for comic covers and panels dating back to the late 1940s. The exhibit also contained interactive puzzles and other audiovisual interactions, but art was the reason that I enjoyed the experience.

Matt Murdoch, as portrayed by Charlie Cox in the Netflix original Daredevil, made the valid point that “We need heroes.” This statement is accurate, and I wholeheartedly believe it. In regards to Marvel, the talented artists and writers also believed this. Thus, their creations have remained timeless classics. As mentioned previously, it was the art that drew me into the exhibit. As someone who likes to draw, it is truly inspiring to be able to track the evolution of the artistic process in front of my eyes. All the techniques that defined comics as we know them were all gathered into one room. My favorite classic comic is, and always will be, the 1973 Amazing Spider-Man #122, “The Night Gwen Stacey Died.” It is, to this day, one of the most expensive comics to collect. To be able to physically see the pencil sketches that were inked by hand was amazing. They had the pencil sketches inked and signed by the original creators, where you could still see the blue lead pencil underneath, showing the placement of characters that have since been changed during the inking process. They had refined pencil strokes in a genuinely fantastic technique. This was only one example of the countless drafts that artists present; however, I am only a nerdy guide. It is up to you to go see them and make your own memories. Another highlight of the exhibit was the statues that you could take photos with. The only decision you have to make is what hero to pose with and what hero pose you want to strike. It just adds a certain amount of pomp to your photo, and as Thor once said, “that’s what heroes do.”

The Marvel: Universe of Super-Heroes exhibit at Telus World of Science is an unforgettable experience for you and the whole family. The exhibition is in the city until February 17, 2020. It is a perfect date for all those couples who appreciate the nerdy things in life. You can go with friends and you can also go solo. Should you find yourself without someone to go with, I might even recommend that special someone that you have been meaning to ask out. Just a suggestion as Valentine’s is on the horizon. It’s never too early to make plans, say, with a nerdy entertainment writer for your local school newspaper. All you have to do is reach out. This exhibit is life-changing, but you won’t be able to appreciate it until you see it. Until you do, “Nuff said.”

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