In this video, Nerdist.com’s “Because Science” segment explores some of the things that make DareDevil extraordinary, and how some real-life adaptations show we’re already a little bit like him.
While he learned to “see” the world using sound, the name “Bat Man” was already taken, “Submarine Man” seemed too nautical, -and so DareDevil it was.
-And though he can also Smell & Feel more than a normal person, it turns out that his bat-like Echo-Location is something un-super people can do too.
Many people who are blind have actually learned to do it. And the surprising studies on them show that they process things much differently than we do, but somehow they don’t actually have better hearing in tests.
Just like many of the tests that show people who lose one sense massively compensate with others, the brains of blind people lit up in several other centers besides the Auditory during MRI studies on them; even the Visual centers of their brains showed high activity.
The type of adaptation of one center to another purpose is called Cross-Modal Neuroplasticity, and shows quite an amazing ability of the brain to re-wire itself in many examples, very likely including Synesthesia.
Now one of the things normal-old-You can do is to “sense” where things are, like when you close your eyes and put your hand in front of your face, even with the lights off.
This is partly something called Proprioception, which is the ability to automatically sense where your limbs are, divorced from the direct sense of touch.
It’s also partly due to another phenomenon many blind people refer to in studies as, “Facial Vision”.
That phenomenon comprises almost a pressure-sensitivity to high-frequency sound bouncing off something and being somehow perceptible on the skin, and possibly tiny vellous hairs, of your face.
An example of Facial Vision for us non-superheroes is the eerie sense you have when you walk through the house in the dark and you feel like you’re going to bump into something a short distance before you hit it.
-And it may not be just your memory doing the work, either, if the blind study participants are right; though it probably takes much longer to develop as a real skill.
Unfortunately, the video doesn’t go into much detail about learnable senses and abilities other than those two.
But SCIENCE! has shown at least one other DareDevil-like ability not from this source video.
Even though the urban legends about dogs & bees being able to smell Fear might be untrue,
According to one study, a group of male test-subjects could smell if women’s immune-systems were different than theirs, whether they were ovulating, and if they were more symmetrical than average.
As you might expect, many of the superpowers normal people might develop are related to successful-mating, as evolution might suggest.
But our evolution isn’t over yet.
-Who knows what other (non-mating-oriented) DareDevil-like superpowers science will discover or even enhance as time and technology progress? The possibilities are Limitless…
JUMP BONUS! For a more lengthy and comic-bookish geek-out on the subject, Check Out Nerd Sync’s Take on it:
Screen Shot of “DareDevil”, by Marvel Studios and Netflix, via Nerdist, Because Science
Videos by Nerdist, Because Science and Nerd Sync, Comic Misconceptions
• Source: YT-BecauseScience
• More Coverage: SA-Superpowers For the Blind & Deaf | NYT-Loss of Sight Heightens Other Senses | TED-Can We Create New Senses? | TED-Daniel Kish, Human Sonar | DareDevil on Netflix
• Source Study: Behavioral Ecology-Major histocompatibility complex genes, symmetry, and body scent attractiveness in men and women