Arts

Arts give us a way to explore our lives and the lives of others, whether it's on canvas, on-stage or on a page.

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How Sword Swallowing Works

Sword swallowing is an extremely dangerous trick that doesn't involve illusions. How can it be real? We'll show you — with explanations and diagrams of the interactions between swords and the upper GI tract. Just don't try this at home!

How can someone lie on a bed of nails without getting hurt?

In circuses, sideshows and other venues, lying on a bed of nails is an expression of a performer's stamina, bravery and imperviousness to pain. In reality, it's a matter of pressure transference and has been practiced for years around the world.

How can someone walk across broken glass without getting hurt?

A magician or street performer walking barefooted across broken glass is a dramatic spectacle. Find out how people can walk across glass without hurting themselves.

Fantastic Four's Canon Report Card

"Fantastic Four" hit the big screen in 2005, a decade after Roger Corman produced the first Fantastic Four movie. Learn how the unreleased 1994 movie and the new Fantastic Four movie franchise compare to the source material.

How Stone Lithography Works

Today artists use stone lithography to produce fine art prints but 150 years ago it was THE color-printing technology. It's an incredible art form. Take a photo-filled look at this fascinating process.

Battling Blockbusters: Fighting Against Superman

It began with an e-mail from a reader who asked "Who would win in a fight -- a Jedi Knight or Superman?" That was all it took for us to wonder how Superman would fare against other stars from movies, books and comic books.

How Kryptonite Works

Most of us know that kryptonite is lethal for Superman, but do you know the precise scientific explanation for its effect? Find out just what it does to Superman and then consider what your own 'kryptonite' might be.

How Improv Everywhere Works

Improv Everywhere is many things: A stage for the stageless; a script for struggling actors who have yet to take Broadway by storm; an attempt to get New Yorkers to remove their earbuds -- which is not as easy as it might seem.

How Science Fiction Musicals Work

The staff here at HowStuffWorks started thinking about what might happen when musicals mesh with science fiction and fantasy. Find out what we discovered about the real and the more theoretical sci-fi musicals.

How the One Man Star Wars Trilogy Works

Surely this is some sort of stereotypical uber-nerd who decided to take his obsession on the road. Not quite -- the creator of "One Man Star Wars" is well-versed in both acting and directing. But can a Star Wars fan go too far?

How Fire Breathing Works

Fire breathing is one of the most dangerous performance arts out there. To get an inside look at how fire breathing works, HowStuffWorks interviewed two fire breathers, including Mike Garner -- a juggler and vaudevillian performer who started breathing fire in 1993.

Essential Doom

In preparation for the movie version of the Fantastic Four, comic book pundit Matt Hunt runs down the ten best appearances of Dr. Doom in Marvel Comics.

How the Batmobile Works

The Batmobile in "Batman Begins" is real -- a physical object not a CG graphic. And yet the Batmobile is also an illusion. How can that be? Learn about the Batmobile and how it comes to life in "Batman Begins."

How the Batsuit Works

The Batsuit does a lot more for Batman than make him look scary. On its own the suit is an impressive piece of technology. The Batsuit combines armor, communications and combat technologies into one state-of-the-art system. Learn how the Batsuit works!

Wonder Woman's Dirty Secrets

Wonder Woman's creator was a radical psychologist/inventor/attorney who had two wives with two children each, all living together as one family. With an unconventional upbringing, it's no wonder one of America's favorite superheros has a unique career.

Heroes Unmasked: How secret are secret identities?

When over a dozen people know your "secret identity," is it really fair to call it secret? Comic book pundit Matt Hunt reveals just how many characters are in on the superheroes' darkest secrets.

Essential Elektra

HowStuffWorks breaks down the top ten Elektra comics. Find out who Elektra was before Jennifer Garner made her famous.

The Villains of Spider-Man 3

Who will Spider-man face in the third installment of his blockbuster film series? Maybe the Green Goblin or Venom? Or maybe Mysterio? Join us and consider all the possibilities as Stuffo takes an educated guess.

Who Killed Batman?

A movie trailer shows Robin coming out of retirement to avenge Batman's death -- clashing with Superman, Wonder Woman, the Joker and the Penguin along the way. What's the story on this ultimate superhero movie?

How Firewalking Works

Ever seen anyone putting on a show of walking barefoot across a bed of hot coals. Are they for real, or is it a trick? They are, in fact, walking barefoot on red-hot, glowing coals. Find out how it's done.

Hellboy Makeup: An Interview with Jake Garber

The movie "Hellboy" scored big at the box office as millions of people were turned on to a new kind of hero. Find out how makeup artist Jake Garber brought the big red guy to life.

Adapting 'Hellboy'

How do you adapt a comic-book story into a feature film? We turned to the creators of "Hellboy" to find out. Check out the amazing process of turning "Hellboy" the comic into "Hellboy" the Hollywood movie.

How Cirque du Soleil Works

In only 20 years, Cirque du Soleil has carved out a unique niche in the entertainment industry. It has spread to cities all over the globe and earned rave reviews every step of the way. Go behind the scenes of Cirque du Soleil and learn the secrets of its success.

How Illustration Works

Greg and Tim Hildebrandt's famous illustrations shaped how countless other artists envisioned Tolkien's world. Learn all about the remarkable process that leads to these amazing paintings.

How do people pull large objects with their teeth?

You've seen people pull huge buses or trains with their teeth and other parts of their bodies. How do they do that?


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