In Kevin Smith’s 1995 cult classic “Mallrats”, the heroes Brodie and T.S. spar over whether or not Superman and Lois Lane could feasibly have sex, and if so would a child be produced? The debate, while brief, raises at least five points which need to be considered: the strength of Superman’s orgasms, Kryptonian DNA, the effect of suntans from mothers to unborn children, the dynamics of a kryptonite condom, and the physiology of Wonder Woman’s uterus. With each piece analyzed individually, we should be able to answer the questions conclusively and offer a best case scenario for the birth of Superman’s child.
“Load Like a Shotgun”?
One theory is that because Superman is extraordinarily strong, so must his orgasms be unusually powerful, causing him to ejaculate semen with such force as to be the equivalent of being shot by a shotgun or other high-powered firearm. If such a blast were to occur, Lois Lane would certainly be killed instantly. So, are his ejaculations like shotgun blasts?
Basically, the question that really needs to be asked is whether a man is capable of modifying the force of his ejaculations. While Superman is quite strong (he can bend metal, for example) he does not automatically have to use such force. Lois Lane can be hugged or kissed without any fear of having her rib cage crushed into dust. Just as any other man could be gentle or hurtful if they so desired (though on a smaller scale).
The difficulty here is that ejaculations seem to be largely an involuntary response outside of human control. In a normal man, there is some degree to which he could have an explosive orgasm or not, but the variance in the average man is so much smaller than what would conceivably be the case with Superman that no known way exists to be sure. Perhaps even a weak ejaculation from Superman could be as forceful as a pellet gun: not lethal, but internal bruising would be likely to occur.
Now, maybe Superman’s ejaculatory power is not as strong as his other strengths. Certainly, many of the things he does involuntarily do not exceed normal levels. And, one interesting thing to consider is the nocturnal emission (wet dream). Presuming that Clark Kent experiences wet dreams, they would have to be on the “human” level, or he would be risking shooting himself in the face or blasting a hole in the ceiling or wall if the blasts are of shotgun magnitude. Something to consider.
What About a Test Tube Baby?
While in Mallrats the general idea seems to be discussing Lois Lane and Clark Kent’s sexual life, if the question is simply about her ability to carry a child, then the sex aspect is really secondary. Superman could easily ejaculate into a strong test tube where Lois could be artificially inseminated or a petri dish could be used.
So, if we are to take the question literally, most of this is not relevent. Though, now that Lois and Clark are married (in the comic book) certainly the issue of sexual relations is important.
Alien DNA Compatibility with Human DNA
If we are concerned about whether or not Lois Lane could have Superman’s baby, the real issue should be less in the sexual activity and more in the biological realm. Is there any reason to believe that Kryptonian DNA could mix with Earthling DNA to prouduce some sort of hybrid child? Has it happened before, could it happen now?
I know of no incident where Kryptonian DNA and Earthling DNA were mixed to create a child (although the Superman mythos is long and distinguisehed so it is quite possible I’ve overlooked this). However, it does seem that Kryptonians are more or less the same species as humans and are composed of the same chemicals (based on the supposition that Superman inhales oxygen and needs to eat for nutrients).
Moreover, in the world of comic books, DNA compatibility is rarely if ever an issue. Creatures with far fewer similarities have created offspring. So unless a certain plot is needed ,the assumption is that in the DC realm the DNA is compatible.
“If Lois Gets a Tan…”
Says Brodie: “If Lois gets a tan, the kid could kick right through her stomach.” This is based on the idea that Superman’s powers come from the Earth’s yellow sun (which I think is open to debate, as some of the powers seem to be gravity related).
However, the whole concept seems far-fetched. If the sun affects Superman, and a mother’s tan would make a difference one would presume we are talking about the absorption of photons. There is no reason to believe the unborn child would absorb any photons at all while in the womb. Any effect of tanning on an unborn child is unknwon to me, and would likely make little difference in this case.
Kryptonite Condoms the Only Option? Would it Kill Him?
Brodie says that “the only way he could bang regular chicks if with a kryptonite condom, but that would kill him.” He is clearly wrong on both counts.
Assuming the ejaculation is very powerful (see above), he could still have sexual relations through use of withdrawal (coitus interruptus) or some sort of tantric sex where he orgasms in his mind but not physically. There is no reason to assume having sex means ejaculating inside of Lois Lane.
And a kryptonite condom is no guarantee for death. I mean, Superman has been subjected to kryptonite a variety of times in his life and he’s still very much alive. If the kryptonite would weaken him, he would likely orgasm much faster (his stamina would be weak) and be able to remove the condom before any serious injury occurred. This may not be an enjoyable experience for Lois, but is still endurable sex with a kryptonite condom.
Wonder Woman’s Uterus
Again we turn to Brodie Bruce, who claims that, “[o]nly someone like Wonder Woman has a strong enough uterus to carry [Superman’s] kid.” Assuming that ordinary women cannot handle a superbaby (something we covered above), the other half of the claim remains: does Wonder Woman have some sort of advantage over ordinary women?
Wonder Woman is from Earth, like other women. She is not a mutant or an alien, but rather an Amazon (such as the women in the Greek myths, but with both breasts intact). She is blessed with superhuman strength, as well as some interesting gadgets such as a special lasso and an invisible airplane. But is her uterus strong enough to handle a shotgun blast?
In short, no. Wonder Woman is incredibly strong, but not bulletproof. She deflects bullets with her bracers (metal wristbands) because — surprise — taking the shot in the chest would be potentially fatal (unlike Superman). Internal tissues tend to be more vulnerable than our skin, so it stands to reason that a strong projectile into the uterus of Wonder Woman would be quite deadly.
If the issue is whether or not Wonder Woman could carry the baby (through artificial insemination), we could say that her threshold of pain and force is higher than an average woman’s and the feasibility would depend on the strength of the child. Certainly, this could go either way and I am unwilling to make any conclusions at this time on this matter.
While at this time I am unable to make any definitive statements on some of the details and issues in this matter pending a further study of both medical literature and comic history, I think we can safely say that in all likelihood Lois Lane could have sexual relations with Superman and could even more likely carry his child to term.
In the event sexual relations would be inhibited in some way, pregancy could be achieved through other means and the risk of the unborn baby causing damage to his or her mother is very slight. I would not be surprised if we were to see a pregnant Lois Lane in the comic books within five years (by 2011), carrying the Superman story into the next generation and saving the legacy of the Planet Krypton.