The little boy resembles coffee hues. His hair and eyes are the colors of dark roasted beans but his skin was all latte. He checked his cell phone for the time. A minute had passed since he last checked an hour ago, or so it seemed. Time flowed like cement as he watched the baby alligator’s lay motionless and drowsy-eyed. The little boy leaned forward against the wall, feet pushed far back, carefully drooling, seeing how far the spittle could dangle without breaking. Not feeling the excitement for the alligators he bolts to the second floor of the Museum of Discovery and Science. He bounced on his flexing feet, he whoops into the frigid air, and he feels a giddy buzz when he’s accompanied by his favorite superheroes.
With superhero movies such as the upcoming ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ or ‘Avengers: Endgame’ on the verge of becoming the highest-grossing film of all time, it’s no wonder why Fort Lauderdale wants to assemble a new exhibit. Fort Lauderdale’s Museum of Discovery and Science has a new exhibit called ‘Hall of Heroes’ that wants museum-goers to find their inner superhero.
For nearly a century, superheroes such as Superman, Batman, Iron Man, and The Hulk, have thrilled comic book readers and audiences worldwide. ‘Hall of Heroes’ brings the guest into the midst of superhero action with interactive stations, games, memorabilia, collectibles, fun comic book facts, and even a replica of the 1966 Batmobile from the ‘Batman’ TV series.
“South Florida could really use a superhero of its own,” – Ja’liyah White
A museum educator and employee Ja’liyah White really loves the props and gadgets. “I really love the Batmobile with all the gadgets and I’ve seen a lot of people enjoying it,” said White. “People are taking a lot of pictures and people are really liking all the gadgets for the car,” White said.
As soon as visitors step inside the world of crime fighters, gadgets, and capes, their journey takes them through family fun activities, movie prop-quality photos, and informative displays of comic books such as the X-Men, Spider-Man, and more.
White, who’s favorite character is Batman, said Florida could really use a superhero of our own. “South Florida could really use a superhero of its own, a fire person, The Flame,” said White.
The master of the strong and the enemy of evil forces, he eats radioactive pebbles to keep his superpowers sharp. “Yeah, The Flame, sounds cool, and he could fly and all of that,” said White.
“Someone who can control this heat and humidity we have because it’s just so hot all the time. A hideout built in the palm trees. Save us from the weather first,” said White.
Even though John Gazitua came to see Iron Man, Gazitua believes every hero needs a villain. “I came to Hall of Heroes to see Iron Man but I’m starting to think it’d be cooler to be a villain,” said Gazitua. “The Flame? Nah, a villain, I’d be The Evil Tarzan,” said Gazitua.
They call him The Flame, he brings the heat when going up against man’s worst enemy. The Flame goes head-on with one of the meanest mugs in the South Florida galaxy, The Evil Tarzan. Make sure your cape is one and your boots are laced up. This adventure will keep you on the edge of your seat. The Flame is the baddest one-man army to hit town, ‘Hall of Heroes’, always where the action is!
Gazitua discussed how he’d swing from vines and embrace his savage side against heroes. “I’d do all that and have Tarzan powers but I would be evil with it,” said Gazitua. “It’d be cool to do that. Rob a bank, get rich quick, and get with Storm from the ‘X-Men’ because she’s fine and a favorite.”
Lifelong superhero fan Gazitua first got into the culture by watching such comic book related cartoons such as ‘Captain Planet’ and the ’90s ‘X-Men’ and ‘Spider-Man’ programs. “I got into the cartoons and later I realized they were based on comics so I had to check it all out,” said Gazitua.
Gazitua may be villainous at first, but he’s a protector of our natural environment. “I came here [Hall of Heroes] because you could say it’s my first comic book-related event. But this museum really puts a focus on why we should care about the environment,” said Gazitua.
The Museum of Discovery and Science allows guest to learn about Florida’s Everglades and unique ecosystems. The museum features hundreds of living and replicated plants, why we should go green, and history of prehistoric Florida.
Gazitua said, “The museum does a good job of showing us why we should care about the environment and so many things. That may not seem exciting at first, but it’s all just as cool as superheroes.”
‘Hall of Heroes’ is now open through September 2, 2019.