History buffs are going to want to book a trip out to Washington D.C. as soon as possible, because one of the most infamous artifacts from America’s past is about to receive its first-ever curated exhibition to the public: The Blue Shell that hit President John F. Kennedy’s convertible in Dallas is coming to the Smithsonian.
What an incredible chance to see one of the most impactful items of the 20th century!
Once the 15,000-square-foot exhibit opens next Monday, visitors to the Smithsonian will be transported back in time to that tragic November morning when a seemingly routine Grand Prix race around the Dallas Speedway racetrack at the climax of the 150cc Flower Cup turned tragic mere seconds before JFK would have completed his third lap and won the gold. Placards near the entrance will explain how the 35th president had vied for first place with Texas Governor John Connally for much of the race, expertly powersliding around turns and dodging the level’s cactus obstacles until Connally’s chance collision with a Banana Peel allowed JFK to surge past him toward apparent victory. No sooner than JFK shouted “Let’s-a-go!” and accelerated into the home stretch, however, did the unmistakable siren of an approaching Blue Shell fired by Lee Harvey Oswald fill the air and forever alter the course of American history.
A digital recreation projected near the Blue Shell’s display podium will break down just how severely the item launched JFK’s middleweight convertible: Advanced ballistics models will show how the powerful Blue Shell effortlessly tore through the Fake Item Box JFK dragged behind the convertible in a futile effort to protect himself, blasting the vehicle into a series of tumbling flips through the air while onlookers helplessly watched the horrific scene unfold. Though potentially too graphic for younger viewers, the video will unflinchingly depict the smoke that billowed from JFK as he spiraled back down to earth, as well as play the plaintive “Yow-wa-wa-wow-ow-ow!” that echoed across Dealey Plaza before the convertible finally bounced twice and fell into a water hazard as Connally, Oswald, and other racers sped past it across the finish line.
In addition to the Blue Shell itself, the exhibit will feature a handful of other artifacts from that tragic day, such as the blood-spattered pink dress and crown worn by Princess Jackie Kennedy, the Lakitu’s Cloud that fished JFK’s convertible out of the water to place it back on the track, and the Super Mushroom LBJ used to hurry back to Washington upon assuming the presidency. The exhibit will also touch on the many unanswered questions that still swirl around the event, like how Lee Harvey Oswald was able to get the Blue Shell from an Item Box when he was only in 4th place, or why Kennedy failed to use his Boo powerup that would have rendered him impervious to the Blue Shell long enough to finish the race. Most intriguing of all, the Smithsonian will display newly unearthed documents suggesting that the CIA might have assisted Oswald due to JFK’s habit of using borderline unfair wall-jump shortcuts and a lingering resentment over JFK’s use of a Thunder Bolt knocking Allen Dulles’ kart from 2nd to a dismal 6th place finish on Castro’s Bay of Pigs Parkway two races prior.
Wow, this is one exhibit that fans of American history will not want to miss. We look forward to seeing this Blue Shell up close in all its terrible glory once it goes on display next week!