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Batman vs Superman: Best superhero showdown settled by science

As the UK prepares to decide on the future of its relationship with the EU and the US faces the prospect of a Trump presidency, scientists have taken to their labs to study a much more pressing issue.

A team of researchers from the University of Leicester has now tackled the age-old question of ‘who’s the best superhero?’, and the results are nothing short of shocking.

Shocking not because of the conclusions drawn, but because the researchers actually spent several years attending to this project.

Related: The Impossible Collection: Batman and Superman’s secret history revealed


According to a series of papers published in the Journal of Physics Special Topics and the Journal of Interdisciplinary Science Topics (yes, this study was published in proper science journals), Superman comes out on top.

Papers included in the study include ‘Can superhuman muscles stop bullets’, and ‘Modelling the mutation rate of The Flash in context’, because out of context would be ridiculous.

As the overall study concludes, Superman is the “best equipped to fight and prevail against his enemies”.

Which probably won’t come as much of a surprise to most, seeing as Superman is pretty much invincible – a phrase we’re sure appears within the official papers themselves.

Naturally, that puts Batman in the losing category, but it wasn’t just the two most iconic figures in comic book history that were scrutinised by the researchers.

Also considered were Wolverine, The Flash, Spiderman, Iron Man, Thor, Iceman, Silver Surfer, Mystique, Black Bolt, and The Lizard.

Related: Batman Arkham Knight review


But out of all of these candidates, it was the caped crusader who, unsurprisingly considering his lack of any superpowers, came out the loser.

One paper, somewhat poetically titled ‘Trajectory of a Falling Batman‘, tries to evaluate the Dark Knight’s ability to glide using his cape as a kind of super power, but finds the following:

” Looking at the case for gliding from a fairly tall building of height 150 m… the problem with the glide lies in his velocity as he reaches ground level.

“The velocity rises rapidly to a maximum of a little over 110 km/hr before steadying to a constant speed of around 80 km/hr.

“At these high speeds any impact would likely be fatal if not severely damaging.”

Yes, the paper finds that the speed at which Batman would travel in real life would make the whole thing an absurd endeavour.

Well, we wouldn’t want to waste our time with anything like that would we now, scientists…

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Who do you think should win? Let us know in the comments.

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