We all wish we had Superman’s powers, which are the classic “flying brick” (meaning he has flight, super strength, and invulnerability) combo with heat vision and Arctic breath. But once in a while, writers decide to give him some esoteric abilities in film that have absolutely no connection to his established set of powers.

The reason these powers stick out so much is that Superman uses it just once, and then completely forgets about it in subsequent films. They always give him weird, one-off powers in the comics, but movies are different – blink and you’ll miss some of Superman’s strangest powers.

Since he’s Superman, he doesn’t just have strange powers, he has super strange powers. So here are some of the super strangest powers Superman has ever shown in film (which have not been seen since).

1. Removable S-shield on his chest

Superman (Christopher Reeves) does the unthinkable in Superman II. Credit: Comic Zombie

Superman (Christopher Reeves) does the unthinkable in Superman II. Credit: Comic Zombie

The final battle of Superman II takes place in Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, where Superman battles Kryptonian criminals General Zod, Ursa, and Non. He’s some distance from them, so he needs to use a ranged attack. No problem, he’s got heat vision, Arctic breath, or he can even vibrate the floor with super sped to cause an earthquake. His final choice is to – tear off his removable S-shield on his chest and fling it at the bad guys.

What?

Compared to the rest of his powers, this is probably one of the slowest ranged attacks he can execute. Remember the Kryptonians have super speed, so they could have dodged it. But they didn’t, and the S-shield just kind of wrapped around them like… Kryptonian cloth. I bet even Superman can’t super explain that.

2. Super kiss of amnesia

Clark Kent (Christopher Reeves) administers the super kiss on Lois Lane (Margot Kidder). Credit: Hero Go Home

Clark Kent (Christopher Reeves) administers the super kiss on Lois Lane (Margot Kidder). Credit: Hero Go Home

In Superman II, Clark Kent reveals that he’s actually Superman to Lois Lane, but later decides it’s a super bad decision. So he kisses her at the end, which turns out to be him administering a mind-wiping super kiss on her. She forgets that Superman and Clark Kent are the same after that, and status quo is restored.

It may seem like a good idea at first, but it gets terribly creepy when you think about it further. Superman effectively has a power that allows him to erase the memories of the people he dates. The film explicitly shows the two of them sharing a night together at the Fortress of Solitude. If Superman were to turn evil (like in Superman III, when he was split into two selves, one good and one evil), then…

3. Wall-rebuilding vision

Superman (Christopher Reeves) uses blue eye beams to rebuild the Great Wall of China in Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. Credit: Surprisingly Competent Media

Superman (Christopher Reeves) uses blue eye beams to rebuild the Great Wall of China in Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. Credit: Surprisingly Competent Media

Superman IV: The Quest for Peace sees Superman battling Nuclear Man in a worldwide brawl that leaves the Great Wall of China in shambles. He stops in the middle of the fight to repair the Great Wall of China by using super speed to reassemble the wall with the fallen bricks, and then welding it together with his heat vision.

No, I’m kidding. What he really does is to use blue super vision to force the rubble to fly back into the Great Wall of China, oblivious to the fact that it just looks like they played the destruction scene in reverse. Perhaps the director felt it necessary to show how Superman would undo all the collateral damage in his battles, but if so, why couldn’t Superman have defeated Nuclear Man, then come back and rebuild the Great Wall? It’s not like flying there would take very long…

4. Telekinesis

General Zod (Terence Stamp) and Ursa (Sarah Douglas) levitate guns in Superman II. Credit: Comics Alliance

General Zod (Terence Stamp) and Ursa (Sarah Douglas) levitate guns in Superman II. Credit: Comics Alliance

In Superman II (that movie sure has a lot of weird Superman powers!), the evil Kryptonians levitate guns away from humans trying to stop them. You’d think that this might just be a power that’s limited to bad guys, since we’re more forgiving of villains sporting random super powers. But apparently, all Kryptonians can do it, since Superman IV: The Quest for Peace shows Superman levitating some bystanders to safety later.

General Zod could just have used super speed to snatch the gun out of the guard’s hand, or even used heat vision to melt the gun.

5. Turning back time

Superman turns back time in the first Superman film. Credit: The Cinematic Katzenjammer

Superman turns back time in the first Superman film. Credit: The Cinematic Katzenjammer

In his big screen debut, Superman reverses time! Granted, they try to add a little superhero physics in it by showing Superman flying around the Earth so fast that he reverses its rotation, hence turning back time. But surely in 1978 (when Superman first came out), the public’s knowledge of science wasn’t so poor as to buy into this right? Superman would have been better off gaining some sort of “time vision” to explain this.

And if Superman can reverse time without being affected by it, well, he would be virtually invincible. Not that he isn’t already.

Poster for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas.

Poster for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas.

Thankfully, we didn’t have those weird powers in Man of Steel, although Superman did act a little out of character in the finale. Will we see Superman using those strange powers in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, though? After all, those powers would come in awfully handy when he battles Batman. You’ll have to catch the epic battle for yourself in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice!

Credits: Comic Zombie, Hero Go Home, Surprisingly Competent Media, Comics Alliance, The Cinematic Katzenjammer, Golden Village Cinemas