'Man of Steel': How much did Superman and Zod's fight cost Metropolis?


One of the big complaints leveled against "Man of Steel" is the careless destruction of Metropolis in the third act of the movie. In case you have yet to see the film -- in which case this post contains spoilers -- there are several big action set pieces that result in many skyscrapers being toppled and much of the city being destroyed, and the movie offered no resolution for how Metropolis would hope to recover.

BuzzFeed reached out to Charles Watson at Watson Technical Consulting to determine just how much damage was done the "Man of Steel's" central city. According to the WTC team's calculations, the impact of Superman and Zod's fight "seemed to be similar to an air burst from a 20kt nuclear explosion in terms of shock effects, but without the radiation or thermal effects."

All told, WTC estimated that 129,000 people would be confirmed dead after the battle, 250,000 would be missing (though most would ultimately be found deceased) and 1 million residents would be injured. In terms of monetary cost, Metropolis is looking at $750 billion in physical damage and $2 trillion in overall economic impact. Let's hope Superman also has a super credit card to help the city recover.

Of course, Superman did, you know, save the world thanks to his fight with Zod, but it seems somewhat surprising that a superhero who strives so hard to protect humans would be so careless about destroying a major city. These calculations don't even include the damage Superman caused his hometown of Smallville during his battle with Faora and Tor-An. 

Maybe this criticized aspect of "Man of Steel" will be dealt with in its fast-tracked sequel, but for now consider it a big gaffe on the part of director Zack Snyder and writer David Goyer. If only those two had listened to Christopher Nolan's advice about ending the movie, there probably wouldn't be this much backlash.


Photo/Video credit: Warner Bros./BuzzFeed