Superhero Physics

Submitted by david.reagan on Fri, 09/19/2008 - 21:35

So, I bought Smallville Season 7 the other day and have been watching Clark Kent save the day. Plus I just saw Hancock in the theater. It got me thinking.

In Hancock the guy tosses a kid way up in the air and then catches him. In Smallville, Clark superspeeds to pickup people out of the way of speeding cars and such dangers.

Think about it for a minute. In Hancock the only difference between the ground and being caught by Hancock is a few feet. Clark is going way faster than the car when he grabs the victim. How exactly is either of those situations better? Wouldn't Clark actually hit the victim harder than the car? He's going faster after all. And once the kid hits terminal velocity, it's going to take more than a few feet to stop him without turning him to paste...

In order for it to work right, the hero would have to match velocities with the victim, and then accelerate/decelerate slow enough that the victim doesn't get crushed.

At least, that is what has been bugging me...