It is all in the grains and their packing!

One formidable superpower Marko possesses, for example, is the ability to alter his body’s density at will. In “Spider-Man 3,” the two battle in the confines of an armored car that Sandman had been trying to rob. When Sandman changes his torso into a lightly packed state, Spider-Man’s vaunted “spider strength” is useless; his blows futilely pass through Marko. Sandman then hardens the grains in his own hands into a rigid, close-packed state to strike Spider-Man with fists as hard as rocks.

Scientists as far back as Isaac Newton have investigated how a sand pile’s properties depend on the way the individual grains are arranged.

James Kakalios used the Spiderman 3 as an excuse to expound some granular materials fundae! via Pharyngula.

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