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Issue Date: September 2008

Zap!Pow!Bam! The Superhero: The Golden Age of Comic Books, 1938-1950

Sept. 16-Jan. 4
Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage

maltzjewishmuseum.orgIt’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superman! And guess what, folks? He isn’t from Krypton; he’s from Cleveland. Another piece of comic book trivia: Like Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, who dreamed up the Man of Steel while at Glenville High School, many of the major comic book superheroes such as Batman, the Incredible Hulk, Captain America and the Green Lantern were created by Jewish comic book artists.Zap! Pow! Bam!takes a look at the relationship between such Golden Age comic book characters and their artists’ heritage.

“The story of the people is woven through the exhibit,” says Judi Feniger, executive director of the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage.

Children can sit in a mini Batmobile, try on costumes from the likes of Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel or answer calls from a vintage phone booth. There are old comic book serials and newsstands with comic books, as well as a re-creation of an artist’s drawing room where visitors can learn how to draw.

“Just think of the imagination that it took to create superheroes and draw these characters,” says Feninger. “It is the continuity that makes comics such a strong genre and such a strong art form.”— SPEarly comic books featuring superheroes such as Superman, Green Lantern and Captain Marvel will be on display.Guests can make like the Dark Knight and take a ride in a mini Batmobile during the exhibit.

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