The Sun and Friend
BLOG – Super Sunburn
At the Cardinals game this past Sunday, I experienced the sun’s rage. The entire right side of my body is bright red. And both my knees look like I rested a plate on them that the waitress warned was really hot, so I shouldn’t touch it.
It’s been terrible.
But all I can think about is whether or not Superman can get a sunburn.
Everyone talks about how Superman shaves, but completely ignores this issue. I mean, the shaving thing is pretty obvious. He uses a diamond razor at super speed … Duh. But the sunburn question is a lot more interesting.
The obvious answer is that Superman cannot get a sunburn since he can withstand extreme temperature and the sun’s radiation is what gives him his powers. He also regularly flies out into space, and without any atmosphere, he’s soaking in all that radiation at full force. And despite that fact, his skin doesn’t seem to be cosmetically affected. At least not drastically.
That being said, Superman might still tan.
Of course, tanning is the bodies defense against the sun. Melanin increases in the skin to protect against damage.
But if Superman can’t get sun damage, he might have no need to tan. And if that’s the case, why isn’t Superman pastier than an Irish cave dweller?
Then again maybe Superman can theoretically get a sunburn, but in practice he doesn’t, because of his powers.
And since his powers get stronger the longer he’s in the sun, sun exposure would have the opposite affect on him. Instead of getting tanner, Superman would get paler, since he’d need less protection against the sun the longer he’s in it.
Another possibility is that it’s the melanin that absorbs the helpful super-empowering radiation, and actively protects him against sunburn. In which case, he’d tan like the rest of us, while never getting a sunburn or developing skin tumors.
Either way, I hope all of this is addressed in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.