Arts Desk

After “Anchorman: The Exhibit,” How Low Can D.C. Museums Go?

ron-burgundy-anchormanLast week, the struggling Newseum opened one of the more blatantly pandering exhibits in local museum history: a show dedicated to Anchorman, the 2004 Will Ferrell vehicle that's remained stubbornly fixed in the popular imagination, mostly for its litany of moronic one-liners (“I love lamp!”). Arriving just a month before the premiere of the movie’s sequel, the Paramount Pictures-sponsored show exists to tempt visitors through the Pennsylvania Avenue NW’s facility’s doors. (A perfectly valid endeavor for a museum, but still.)

Even scarier than the prospect of hundreds of bros wandering downtown wearing T-shirts that read “I’m Kind of a Big Deal” is the example set by "Anchorman: The Exhibit." If it’s a success, who knows what ideas it’ll put into the heads of board members at other museums? Pretty soon, the programming at local cultural institutions could look a lot like this:

encino-man

Encino Man at Natural History Museum
On display: ICEE machine from convenience store scene (“Wheeze the juice!”)
In the gift shop: Lighters (“flamaaage!”)

pizza-the-hutt

Space Balls at Air and Space Museum
On display: Original “Pizza the Hutt” costume
In the gift shop: Bumper stickers that say “I Heart Uranus

john-dunbar

Dances With Wolves at American Indian Museum
On display: John Dunbar’s handlebar mustache
In the gift shop: Lakota phrasebook

kung-fu-panda

Kung Fu Panda at National Zoo
On display: Pandas (easy!)
In the gift shop: Postcards from the Valley of Peace

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The Hunger Games at National Children’s Museum
On display: Stanley Tucci’s wig
In the gift shop: Bones of children

DF_06248 – ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER explores the secret life of our greatest president, and the untold story that shaped our nation.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter at Ford’s Theatre
On display: Lincoln’s vampire-slayin’ ax
In the gift shop: Awesome top hats

snakesonaplane

Snakes on a Plane at College Park Aviation Museum
On display: Snakes
In the gift shop: Snakes

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