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Pack your bags, we’re going to Mars!

May 5, 2013
By WES BURNS - Copy Editor (wburns@timesrepublican.com) , Times-Republican

Ever felt tired of life on this planet? Ever thought that maybe, just maybe, you could slip the surly bonds of Earth and escape; that you could flee the graveyard of history and live life new among the stars?

As this new millennium brings mankind beyond the horizon this very wish can be yours to hold ... but first you're going to have to get on TV.

That's right folks! Pack your bags and kiss the kids goodbye because reality TV is going to Mars and it's an open casting call!

People have dreamed of going to Mars since the 2001 release of John Carpenter's "Ghosts of Mars," starring Ice Cube and Pam Grier. Maybe people wanted to go to Mars before that, but there is no way of knowing for sure.

Now Dutch entrepreneur and first act Bond villain Bas Lansdorp has created Mars One, a multimedia venture with the end goal of sending a team of human colonists on a one-way trip to the Red Planet armed with their wits, a huge supply of vegetable seeds, and a robot that I?have been assured will not go crazy and murder all of them upon arrival.

OK, the robot is mere speculation at this point, but the rest is alarmingly accurate.

Now this whole "fly a bunch of people to Mars" thing is a bit pricey; $6 billion to be exact. And since Mr. Lansdorp isn't an heir to a lost Viking fortune and didn't invent Instagram he can't fund the whole thing himself.

Solution? Reality TV.

That's right. Over the next 10 years Lansdorp and what I?assume are a legion of jumpsuit wearing henchmen plan to fund the project with a reality TV show where contestants compete to be lucky enough to die millions of miles away from home.

Because when I think "funding a project that will irrevocably alter the course of human history" I immediately think about the great pool of wealth backing such ostentatious spectacles as "Minute to Win It."

By now you're probably thinking "Mars? Wooooo! I can't wait 10 years, I'm going to build my own rocket and fly there right now!"

I'm going to let Homeland Security explain the flaw in your plan. To those of you who aren't incarcerated, the selection process is quite simple. To be considered for the TV show all you have to do is submit a one minute video about why you would be the perfect candidate for the voyage.

Wait, don't bust out the low cut tops and extreme skateboard moves just yet America. Head on over to the Mars One website and look at the leading submissions. The top spot, by quite a margin, is held by a 51-year-old man named simply Anders.

Within the span of 60 seconds Anders explains that he doesn't want to live on this planet anymore, he likes "The Simpsons" and "South Park," he's (shockingly) single and says that, if he goes, his closest relatives will "just have to accept it."

Wow. I didn't know space travel could get sadder than that sequel to "2001: A Space Odyssey" but there's the proof.

Is this the kind of people we want representing mankind when we inevitably meet the aliens? Dower middle-aged men from Sweden that still think "The Simpsons" is funny?

No. This is too big a decision to leave up to Internet voting ... well, fair Internet voting, anyway.

That's why I'm calling all the full power of my readership (we're up to three!) to submit videos not for themselves, but to draft my hand-picked team of all-star humans who are up to the challenge of meeting, greeting and beating the alien horde on their own terrain.

Candidate number 1: Vladimir Putin.

Can you think of a better example of humanity than this guy? He could easily take a break from fist fighting killer whales to dominate all of Mars, kill the aliens, steal one of their ships and return to Earth with the first batch of Martian Vodka. Awesome.

Candidate number 2: Jeff Goldblum.

I've seen these kind of movies before and you're going to need a Jeff Goldblum to get you out of the tough spots with some of his patented Sci-Fi jargon/mumbling. Works every time.

Candidate number 3: Meryl Streep.

Just a class act all around, always a welcome addition to any cast.

Candidate number 4: Gwyneth Paltrow.

This is our best chance to get this pretentious windbag off our planet. Don't mess it up, people!

And there you go. An unbeatable team of alien stomping, Mars crushing super humans capable of conquering the Red Planet with ease. Call of the search, the Mars One team is ready to go!

Unless the show gets cancelled so they can rerun "The Voice." In which case the hopes of a generation will be dashed, because we're all stuck with Gwyneth Paltrow for a little while longer.

 
 

 

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