I just watched the first episode of MARS, National Geographic Channel’s thought-provoking six-part mini series that premiered in the Philippines last Sunday, November 13.
In a special screening held yesterday afternoon at Abe Serendra, we had the chance to talk to SVP and General Manager of Fox Networks Group Philippines JUDE TURCUATO, who said that the new series will combine science fiction and real science as they show how present technological advances makes a Mars expedition possible in today’s age. Maybe not this year but sooner than we think.
The scripted portion of MARS follows a crew of six fictitious astronauts in the year 2033 as they travel to Mars aboard the spacecraft Daedalus – Earth’s first-ever crewed mission to the Red Planet. The mission is funded by international partnerships and corporations, working together to get this once-in-a-lifetime voyage off the ground. When the uniquely qualified Daedalus crew arrive on Mars, they explore astounding wonders and grapple with unexpected challenges as they work to set up humanity’s first colony on the Distant Planet.
The why and how would be vaguely interpreted in the series but as we have seen in the first episode, the most thrilling part is in how they presented this fictional story working in a scientific environment that is actually very real.
Bridging the space between science and science fiction, MARS also showcases an unprecedented collection of interviews with the world’s leading scientific minds. As the fictional story of the Daedalus crew unfolds, television audiences will hear real interviews with some of the most fascinating people on Earth, including astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson; business magnate and inventor Elon Musk; Andy Weir, author of The Martian, adapted into an Oscar-nominated film starring Matt Damon; and former NASA astronauts Charles Bolden, John Grunsfeld and James Lovell.
We’ve only watched the first episode which basically told the story of how the first manned Mars expedition landed on the Red Planet. And now, more questions have arised that only the next episodes could answer. Questions like:
- Will the series explore on hard scientific facts about Earth’s condition and was this a primary reason why a Mars expedition or colony is currently on the table of great scientific minds and groups?
- Will it tackle both scientific facts and myths about life on Mars and earthly encounters?
- Will it present never before seen promising data that will prove that MARS’ environment can support life (earth) – and how?
- As with any exploration, will the series expound on territorial claims and the political implications of a manned MARS expedition?
At any case, MARS is still a global television event that will definitely redefine on-air storytelling with its unique Docu-Scifi format.
MARS is the work of Academy Award-winning and Emmy-winning producers Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Michael Rosenberg of Imagine Entertainment; and Academy Award-nominated and Emmy-winning producer Justin Wilkes and Dave O’Connor of Radical Media.
The show’s stars include South Korean-born singer, composer, and multimedia artist JiHAE, playing Mission Pilot Hana Seung; and Ben Cotton, known for sci-fi productions ranging from Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome to The Chronicles of Riddick, who takes on the role of American Mission Commander Ben Sawyer.
The suspenseful story of humanity’s first manned mission to Mars will be revealed in one-hour episodes over the next six weeks starting tonight (November 17) at 9pm on the National Geographic Channel.
To celebrate this breakthrough television event, National Geographic Channel and the Fox Networks Groups Philippines will treat science fans to a MARS experience at the Bonifacio High Street in BGC, Taguig. There are four activities to try including a virtual experience booth that both young and old will surely like.
Here’s my passport:
The MARS installation at BGC will be available to the public until November 19 (Saturday).
See you all on MARS 2033! 🙂
Here’s a video of my quick visit to MARS:
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