I Have To Ask

On the commercial street near my house, there’s a comic-book store, and as I walked by it today they had a big picture of Superman on display. It looked something like this:

It seemed to me that the Man of Steel was looking even more buff than ever, certainly way more so than when I was a kid. Look at those lats!

At first I thought: Way to go, big guy! But then I started wondering: when Superman wants to bulk up a bit, how the hell does he do it?

For that matter, why does he even need to be in shape at all?

Related content from Sphere

13 Comments

  1. Kevin Kim says

    Have you ever seen Pixar’s “The Incredibles”? They deal with the question of Superman gone to seed — and they do it in a manner that weaves in some adult themes, like possible marital infidelity.

    Bob Parr, a.k.a. Mr. Incredible, is the Pixar analogue to Superman, except that he’s flightless. Forced into retirement with all the other superheroes because the public can no longer stand (not to mention foot the bill for) all the destruction that superheroes cause whenever they fight evil, Bob one day receives a self-destructing video message from a sultry blonde, asking him if he’d be willing to go on a mission. Bob’s happily married, but he’s also bored with routine human existence and wants to get back in the game. While still amazingly strong, he’s now soft and out of shape, so he begins training. Kids will think he’s merely training because he’s excited about the prospect of a new mission; adults, however, will note that Bob’s ulterior motivation might have something to do with that good-looking blonde.

    So what sort of equipment does a man like Mr. Incredible use when he works out? Watch the movie, if you haven’t already, and find out. The workout montage is one of the highlights in a movie with many, many highlights. It made my “23 movies” list.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 12:10 am | Permalink
  2. Dom says

    I remember once, when an evil spirit had drained the ocean, Superman fixed it by bringing the moon closer to earth to change the gravitational pull. Then, finished, he threw the moon back into orbit, looking a man who was skipping rocks across a lake. I really can’t imagine him in a gym.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 7:56 am | Permalink
  3. “…, why does he even need to be in shape at all?”

    Chicks.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 10:10 am | Permalink
  4. Malcolm says

    Chicks? They’d take an interest regardless, I think.

    But then again, there are issues

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 10:31 am | Permalink
  5. bob koepp says

    Yeah, it’s hard to imagine what Kal-El could do to “exercise,” i.e., put stress and strain on his muscles.

    As for the “issues” outlined in the link provided by Malcolm, all this assumes that Kal-El is subject to the same (universal) laws of mechanics as the rest of the known universe… but he’s not! For example, suspended in mid-air, he can throw objects much more massive than himself without recoiling to the other side of the galaxy — there goes Newton’s third law. And, I know that he’s not unusually massive since even flimsy structures like chairs don’t collapse under his weight. I guess super powers are enigmatic.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 12:28 pm | Permalink
  6. Issues, shmissues. He’s a guy. And chicks are superficial. Case closed.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 1:28 pm | Permalink
  7. I notice he doesn’t have a six pack.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Permalink
  8. JK says

    Issues, shmissues TheBigHenry! I can understand how Superman might be immune from STDs but doggone, I’d bet the big guy ain’t “firing blanks.”

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm | Permalink
  9. Malcolm says

    Right, Jeffery – a four-pack. That’s how they always box the really strong stuff.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 7:47 pm | Permalink
  10. If you want really strong stuff, Malcolm, go for the Joose.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Permalink
  11. Frankly, JK, I must admit to being somewhat intimidated by consideration of the big guy’s “ammunition”.

    Posted March 7, 2011 at 11:39 pm | Permalink
  12. JK says

    No need for you to be intimidated TheBigHenry – although Lois Lane might need to.

    Anybody got addresses for both Superman and Wonder Woman? I’d almost bet $ anyone arranging a dinner date for those two would be in receipt of eternal gratitude. And, howeverever “eternal gratitude” is expressed in the Super and Wonder communities.

    Posted March 8, 2011 at 9:24 am | Permalink
  13. super man trainer says

    he lifts weights partially made with kryptonyte, just enough to weaken him to a normal human level without killing him. It’s that simple.

    Posted March 11, 2011 at 11:42 am | Permalink