If you ever wondered what the world would be like with real-life superheroes, you need not ponder any longer. It turns out they exist, but they aren't exactly decked out in spandex, saving the helpless from burning buildings. People with real superpowers have appeared since the dawn of the 20th century, and their abilities rival even those of some of your favorite characters. One real superhero used their abilities at the Olympics, while another simply climbs whatever structure they choose, laws against buildering be d*mned!
The most fascinating aspect of these real-life superheroes is that they're largely just normal people with incredible gifts. Sure, a couple of the men and women with real-life superpowers use their abilities to gain fame and fortune, but most of them lead normal lives, albeit with abnormal abilities.
Before passing away in 2009 from retinal cancer, Ben Underwood was the real-life parallel to Daredevil, the blind lawyer who could "see" vibrations. After being diagnosed with retinal cancer at the age of two, Underwood had both of his eyes removed by the age of three. Through a process called echolocation, Underwood learned to detect the locations of objects by making a clicking sound with his tongue. By creating sounds with his tongue or tapping a cane, Underwood was able to build a world around himself out of wave forms and lead an incredibly active life.
Scientists at Yale university studied an anonymous Connecticut family and found that they may contain the secret to treating and containing osteoporosis. The family has a mutation in the LRP5 gene, which controls some aspects of bone density. According to Richard P. Lifton, chair of the Yale Department of Genetics, "If there are living counterparts to the [hero] in Unbreakable, who is in a terrible train wreck and walks away without a single broken bone, they’re members of this family... [t]hey have extraordinarily dense bones and there is no history of fractures. These people have about the strongest bones on the entire planet."
Hopefully, one day we'll be able to mimic the genetic mutation of this super family and fight against osteoporosis.
In early 2017 Dave Mullins, a New Zealand deep-sea diver, set a record for the deepest dive ever recorded in New Zealand. The 37-year-old swam the length of four swimming pools on one breath, and might have accidentally shown everyone that he's the real Aquaman. While some athletes might be braggy about their accomplishment, Mullins remained pretty chill about the whole thing. "Going down, I just focused on a handful of things which I needed to get right. It sounds really mundane, but it's about relaxing my chest muscles, equalizing, and keeping relaxed all the way down to the bottom." Yeah, no big deal, he just relaxed while allowing himself to sink into the ocean from whence he may have never returned. The next time you lose your contacts while swimming, Mullins is the guy to call.
Jyothi may not be able to shoot super sticky webbing out of his wrists or sense when danger is coming, but in every other aspect he's a modern-day Spider-Man. This wall crawler lives in Karnataka, India and he discovered his uncanny climbing ability while climbing some bamboo scaffolding. He told the Daily Mail: "I discovered my ability to climb in this manner working on the bamboo scaffolding when I started as a construction worker. I could climb at an incredible rate without fear. I began to climb for fun at the weekends and came to the famous fort here at Chitradurga to entertain the crowds, especially on Sundays." Jyothi also says that he learned to climb by watching monkeys and copying the stunts in his favorite films.