6

I was singing in the shower holding a near empty bottle of shampoo when I felt the vibrations on the bottle. Having a dumb moment I thought to myself "If only Daredevil could see vibrations, then it would be as though he could hear..." Then I realised I had it the wrong way round.

But another, less stupid thought popped into my head: "Can he feel/hear radiation pressure?"

Photons exert a pressure (however minute) on whatever they strike, so instead of waves of sound pressure causing a visual stimulus, a wave of radiation pressure would give an aural stimulus. It would however be very 'dim', as radiation pressure from a million red photons would be no more than 4.2 yoctopascals (10-24).

Is this possible for him? <joke> Or should I go pitch this idea?</joke>

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    Were you using the shampoo bottle as a microphone? – SaintWacko Sep 20 '12 at 13:49
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    That would be an interesting take on the character, but would completely negate his blindness. An arc in which he learned to do so (similar to the Samurai Jack episode 'Jack and the Three Blind Archers'), and then adjusted to being functionally sighted, could be pretty interesting, although it would probably need to be a non-canonical mini-series or graphic novel. – 6c1 Dec 17 '12 at 22:21
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    @elempenguin for mentioning that episode, I really loved that series. – AncientSwordRage Dec 17 '12 at 23:38
  • How would the light get into his ears? – Beta Dec 18 '12 at 19:09
12

Daredevil is a walking Geiger counter.

By the man's own admission.

In Daredevil #43 (1968), after Karen Page decides to walk away from him, a heartbroken Daredevil begins to storm the city, looking for a bad guy to lash out on. He first settles on beating up the Jester, but intercepts a radio call announcing the theft of radioactive vials.

He then proceeds to use his "hyper-keen senses", which make him a "walking Geiger counter", in order to "sniff the thief out". Indeed, upon approaching the villain, Matt feels "a strange, burning sensation".

Daredevil sniffs a thief out

This radiation affects him very quickly, and later driving him a tad bit mad, going up in a boxing match against Captain America. Daredevil suspects it has to do with the accident that made him blind, namely his eyes being spread with radioactive material fallen from a truck.

Daredevil remembers the accident

As to how exactly he detects the radioactive material, it's not precised if it's the radiation waves, the pressure... But to be perfectly honest, I think 60s comic book writers were even more clueless about radioactivity properties than I am.

He can also identify radioactive heat

In Daredevil #1 (2014), while helping out some forensics in a kidnapping matter, Matt Murdock is able to detect a particular warmth coming from a piece of paper, and identifies it as "a minute level of residual radioactivity". Not really radiation pressure, but still a defining radiation characteristic.

Daredevil identifies residual radioactivity. But no worries, it's from radioactive waste, and he's one to know those aren't really dangerous, aren't they?


And of course, usual comic book rules apply. Daredevil can hear a heartbeat over an early-2000s cellphone (Daredevil #38, 2002), he can read a newspaper due to how the ink feels under his fingers (lots of instances), he can anticipate a phone call (Daredevil #184, 1982)...

So, if the writers need him to be able to feel radiation pressure, he'll be able to do that.

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    "It happens all the time! Some bird-brained sneak thief grabs a doctor’s medical bag - not suspecting it contains deadly radioactive material!" Man, 60s New York must have been quite a place to live in... – Jenayah Sep 30 '18 at 19:45
5

According to his bio, Daredevil's powers are extraordinary but without being too unrealistic (such as Superman's):

  • He can hear the Hulk's heartbeat from 4 blocks away.
  • He can read a book by feeling the ink across the page.

Short answer: No, such an ability would be far too unrealistic.

  • Feeling ink on a printed page isn't "unrealistic"? – Yamikuronue Dec 18 '12 at 13:51
  • @Yamikuronue, it is, but it's not "far too" unrealistic (in a comic book) – SteB Dec 18 '12 at 13:57
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    Those feats are three or four orders of magnitude outside the normal human range. Feeling the light pressure of direct sunlight would be three or four orders beyond that. – Beta Dec 18 '12 at 19:15
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    At one point, he was able to tell the color of the ink based on the way it feels, so that goes FAR into the realm "unbelievable". – krillgar Nov 27 '14 at 2:38

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