The Biology of Superheroes Podcast

The Biology of Superheroes Podcast

Superheroes and science fiction meet the cutting edge of biological sciences in this podcast. Where does the science meet the fiction? Listen and find out! If you have suggestions for a topic or would like to be a featured guest, please contact biologyofsuperheroes@gmail.com

Episodes

July 20, 2020 53 min

In this episode Shane and Arien discuss the insect arsenal of Scott Lang (Antman) and his predecessor, Dr. Hank Pym. Shane interviews Dr. Corrie Moreau of Cornell University about ant weaponry, ant communication and the science behind Antman's helmet. How do ants organize to perform such complicated tasks? What has made them one of the most successful groups of animals on the planet? Which ant species has the most unbearable st...

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In this episode, we tackle the weird and otherworldly ecosystem of The Upside Down. Shane and Arien are joined in The Lab by biologist, PhD student and science communicator, Angela Manci. We chat about dark and barren ecosystems and how animals evolve to cope with these extreme environments. We also tackle the complex life cycle of the Demogorgan and its fascinating symbiotic relationship with The Mind Flayer. Check it out!

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We’re bringing a close to 2019 by wrapping up our two-part series on the Incredible Hulk. We continue our conversation about Bruce Banner by focusing on the psychology of stress and how its shapes our personalities. I sit down with clinical psychologist and host of The Arkham Sessions, Dr. Andrea Letamendi. We talk about the psychological impacts of early childhood trauma in Bruce Banner's life, what it’s like for two distinct ...

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December 2, 2019 22 min

In this minisode we wrap up November 2019 chatting about the latest and greatest in the world of comic books and science, shout out some listener comments AND answer some burning questions straight from you!!!

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In the first part of this month's episode we explore Bruce Banner and The Incredible Hulk through the lens of physiological stress. We chat with stress physiologist Dr. Michelle Rensel to explore what our bodies go through when we are stressed and how exposure to stressful events can impact us later in life....or even future generations. We chat about anxiety, societal implications and health outcomes. This conversation is heav...

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October 15, 2019 21 min

Shane and Arien catchup on what's new in the worlds of comic books and science, share reviews, and answer comic book queries directly from YOU!

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In the Season 2 premiere we explore Black Panther and the world of Wakanda live at the 2019 International Wildlife Film Festival. Billy Almon and Dr. Sebastian Alvarado join in to chat about bio-inspiration, sustainability and explore the roles of culture and genetics in shaping this incredible population. Check it out!

Music By The Passion HiFi www.thepassionhifi.com

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WE'RE BACK. Take a listen to get a sneak peak at what's in store for The Biology of Superheroes Podcast Season 2!

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NO LAST SEASON SPOILERS! In this episode, we explore the biology of the dragons of Game of Thrones. We interview Dr. Bret Tobalske, Director of the University of Montana Flight Laboratory. We chat about the evolution and biomechanics of flight, the physiology of large reptiles and the biology of fire breathing. I'm joined in The Lab by special guest co-host, actor and comedian Ted Limpert. Check out the latest and greatest of T...

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In this episode, we explore the biology of Danny Rand, AKA The Immortal Iron Fist! We dig into biomechanics of extreme movement, compensating for extreme forces and evolutionary tradeoffs of extreme performance. We chat with Dr. Sheila Patek of Duke University, who studies evolutionary biomechanics to get the lowdown on The Protector of K’un-Lun and nature’s real life Iron Fist, the mantis shrimp. How fast is the fastest strike in ...

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In this episode, we take a look at the Star Trek Universe! We explore evolution, genetics, the search for intelligent alien life and interspecies boot-knocking. We chat with Dr. Mohamed Noor of Duke University, an evolutionary geneticist and author of Live Long and Evolve: What Star Trek can teach us about Evolution, Genetics and Life on Other Worlds. Could alien nanobots actually evolve? Is it possible that Captain Kirk has illegi...

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Because we just can't get enough of The Erins, we had to post this alternate ending to our epic crossover with This Podcast Will Kill You. The Erins nerd out with us about superpowers and send us all back to the wonderful memories 90's young adult scifi. Just...the...best

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In this episode we take a look at Spiderman's longtime nemesis, Venom. We explore the character's origins, what it would take to survive on an asteroid headed towards earth and the amazing biological phenomena that can result from symbiotic relationships. We interview Dr. Heather Olins, whose research focuses on the biology of marine extremophiles and Dr. John McCutcheon who studies symbiosis in the natural world.  Take a l...

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Happy Halloween! This episode is one part of a very special 2-part crossover event with This Podcast Will Kill You. We chat with Dr. Erin Welsh and Dr. Erin Allmann-Updyke about death, epidemics and behavior manipulating parasites. How do we diagnose death? What happens in our bodies after we die? Is it possible that parasites could manipulate rotting corpses to feast on the unsuspecting masses? Take a listen and find out!!!

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We're back!!! In this episode we sit down with Dr. Evan Kingsley, a developmental biologist at Harvard Medical School, to chat about dinosaur sounds. What did dinosaurs sound like and how can we learn about animal sounds from millions of years ago? Take a listen and find out!

Music By The Passion HiFi www.thepassionhifi.com

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This episode comes to you live from the historic Roxy Theatre in Missoula, MT as part of the 41st Annual International Wildlife Film Festival. We were able to chat with Dr. Doug Emlen, professor of biology at University of Montana and author of Animal Weapons: The Evolution of Battle. We talk about the parallels between weapons in the comic book multivese and those that have evolved across the tree of life. Camouflage, horns, claws...

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In this episode we talk about Jurassic Park and the science of de-extinction. We chat with evolutionary biologist and MacArthur Fellow, Dr. Beth Shapiro. She tells us all about the possibilities, complications and ethical dilemmas of bringing back ancient and extinct species. Can we get dino DNA? How would we use it to create a living, breathing animal? What are the dangers of this kind of technology? Check it out!

Music By The Pas...

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Earth 1's Barry Allen meets Earth 2's Jay Garrick in a classic showdown of speedsters! How did evolution play out on their respective worlds to get such similar results? We talk with Dr. Jonathan Losos, evolutionary biologist and author of Improbable Destinies: Fate, Chance, and the Future of Evolution to get some insights! Check it out!

Music By The Passion HiFi www.thepassionhifi.com

 

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In this episode we explore Peter Parker as an engineer and try to gain a deeper understanding of the scientific tools he would need to master to become Spiderman. I interview Dr. Jonathan Kluge, Director of Research and Development at Vaxess Tecnologies, who spends his time thinking about cutting edge applications for silk. How does Spiderman produce so much of his web formula? How do his webshooters work? What is silk being used f...

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In this episode we discuss the limits of form and function when it comes to Spiderman's webs. I sit down with Dr. Todd Blackledge, who studies the behavior and biomechanics of web building in spiders. What exactly is spider silk? How strong is it? Where in the natural world would Peter Parker go to get inspiration for his custom web formula? We've got you covered. Check it out!

Music By The Passion HiFi www.thepassionhif...

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