In Man of Steel, when Clark and General Zod fight! Clark lets out an almighty scream with what seems to be all of his strength.

We know that Superman has a lot of powers that are far more powerful than humans. Below is a quote from the wiki article about the Man Of Steel Novel

Ma and Pa Kent bring a six-month-old Kal/Clark to the doctor. The growing baby couldn't stop crying, and the Kents, trying to find out what was wrong, brought him to get examined. Believing Clark to be suffering from colic, the doctor administers a hearing test, and Clark proceeds to scream so loud that he blows out the glass elements not just in the doctor's office, but in the windshields and storefront windows across town. "It was a funny scene but we decided not to keep it in," Goyer said

So we can assume he has this ability in the movie.

Sound is dangerous and kill if loud enough. (see "Can a loud enough sound kill you?"

The question is, is 154 decibels enough to kill you? In all honesty, probably not — unless, perhaps, you were stuck with your head inside the horn for a prolonged period. 150 decibels is usually considered enough to burst your eardrums, but the threshold for death is usually pegged at around 185-200 dB.

For one, we see Lois on the staircase, at what I would estimate to be about 80ft from Superman.

Using this formula, SPL = (source SPL)-(20*LOG10(Distance from source)) for measuring diminishing sound over distance, you can calculate that Superman would have to have made a 208 dB scream , which over 80 ft would mean the SPL level would be about 180 dB's @ 80ft.

It is in the realm of possibility that he can make a 208 dB sound, and that making a sound that loud via a scream would in fact kill or maim anyone in close proximity to him.

Wouldn't this scream have killed or maimed all the people in close proximity to Clark?

  • I don't think it's a spoiler that Superman and Zod fight each other :-)
    – Valorum
    May 31, 2016 at 9:42
  • @Valorum, I was not sure, so I choose the safe road. Cheers.
    – KyloRen
    May 31, 2016 at 9:50
  • @armadillo, Sorry LOG10 is an excel function. Put that formula into excel and it will work. I tested it.
    – KyloRen
    May 31, 2016 at 9:52
  • @KyloRen - You also seem to be referring to a specific scene. Since there's only one person in proximity to Clark, why not just ask the question directly?
    – Valorum
    May 31, 2016 at 9:52
  • 1
    I think humans would be endangered from an involuntary Superman scream, but there isn't much that can both hurt Superman enough to make him scream and allow him to retain his powers long enough to emit a super-scream. If Superman didn't have fine control over his powers, Clark Kent would become human wrecking-ball the first time anyone startled him.
    – Kyle Jones
    May 31, 2016 at 19:45

1 Answer 1


Superman was dramatically weakened by his exertions. It seems likely that his super-scream didn't have its normal potency.

From the novelisation

His foe had gone the way of Krypton, but Superman wasn’t sure he would ever forgive Zod for making the hero the instrument of his death. Anguish tore at Superman’s heart; he had always sought to save lives, not take them. Killing Zod took a terrible toll on him. His shoulders slumped as he stood above the body, feeling both emotionally and physically drained.
He really was the Last Son of Krypton now, he realized.
Apart and alone.

  • 1
    Please note that the quote above isn't verbatim. There was a slight typo in the original referring to Zod as "The Zod". I've corrected it.
    – Valorum
    Jun 30, 2016 at 19:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.