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Exclusive: We check out Marvel's Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. exhibit!

05.30.2014

As Marvel Studios appears to be very publicly falling apart at the seams with the recent departure of Edgar Wright and Drew Goddard from the company, it’s good to be reminded of those golden salad days of, well, 2012. That was when THE AVENGERS brought hope to every fanboy heart by combining Earth's Mightiest Heroes into one two-hour slugfest/quip party that went on to become the third highest-grossing movie of all-time.

With AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON dropping next year, Marvel doesn't want Spider-Man or the X-men stealing their summer thunder (at least not in New York), so they've teamed up with the eggheads at Discovery Times Square and NASA to unleash Marvel's Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. That last acronym stands for Scientific Training and Tactical Intelligence Operative Network, but don't worry, it's barely educational.

 

Along with 700 other invited guests, we got to preview the exhibit opening to the public, complete with an introduction by NASA's Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate John M. Grunsfeld. Just so the geek contingent in the crowd didn't feel left out, they also brought up Marvel Comics senior editor Nick Lowe, who was so busy thanking everyone at Marvel Studios that a woman in the crowd had to yell out to him to thank Jack Kirby, the artist who created all these heroes. Embarrassing!

However, not as embarrassing as hundreds of sweaty nerds knocking over hors d'oeuvre trays or small children in order to be the first to tour the Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. exhibit. Once it was our turn, we were led down a mysterious hallway of black curtains as Alan Silvestri's "Avengers" score played. Museum employees in S.H.I.E.L.D. gear directed us to a white glass room not unlike the interrogation areas in 2011's THOR where we were greeted by a screen display of a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent giving us the 411 on our mission.

"Your job within the station is to learn as much as you can. Should you complete your mission here, you'll become part of the Avengers Station, a combat support network for the Avengers Initiative. You've each been given a unique ID badge, matched to your biometrics it allows S.H.I.E.L.D. to update your progress. That badge is your line into S.H.I.E.L.D., the most powerful piece of nanofiber you'll ever hold, so don't lose it, keep it safe, and remember to swipe it before you access confidential S.H.I.E.L.D. files. This is your chance to be a part of something greater, an opportunity to help save the world. Let's see if you're up to the task. Do not break anything."

Since this was a "soft opening," we weren't actually given said badges, and most of the interactive element was non-functional, most likely so groups wouldn't dilly dally. It left a lot more time for what we really came to see: Props, props and more props! It's a tremendous collection of legit movie memorabilia, from the costumes worn by all the Avengers in the movie to a full-size Chitauri. Items like Loki's helmet and scepter lie behind glass along with bigger pieces like the Tesseract device or an alien hover vehicle, all as sorta real as they looked in Joss Whedon's camera lens.

The attention to detail is also on full display, with even the smallest items like the Captain America trading cards in Agent Coulson's front pocket arranged for the discerning nerd. You get to do a strength test and other activities to test your mettle with the most powerful beings on this or any other planet. An overview station showing the entire universe from Thor's POV was sadly non-functional, as was Iron Man's particle accelerator.

The level of interactivity that –theoretically- exists in Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. is about on-par with Lucasfilm's traveling "Star Wars Identities" exhibit, using the similar notion of collecting info over the course of several key areas and storing it on a device for final evaluation at the end. The fact that it's a glorified costume display that would be as appropriate for Planet Hollywood as it would be for Discovery? Who cares, you mewling quim!

Marvel’s Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. opens to the public today. Get your tickets for the event here and scroll below to see more images from the exhibit!

Source: JoBlo.com

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