'Stars' Align For Spaced-Out Mars Mission On Fox

An ambitious new reality-competition show coming to Fox on June 5 will have 12 stars competing to survive on Mars … NOT!

It should be obvious, but a journalist feels obligated to state it anyway: This TV show, “Stars On Mars,” will not actually be taking place on Mars.

Why? Because it is impossible. Not even Elon Musk could pull this off. 

Of lesser importance to everybody is the question of whether the contestants qualify as “stars.” Once upon a time, a “star” was someone who was recognized by -- and known to -- just about everybody.

For many years, however, so-called “stars” have populated the ranks of all kinds of “star” and “celebrity” reality-competition shows.



However, the TV Blog concedes that whether or not a person can be considered a star or a celebrity is a matter of opinion.

With that in mind, here are the 12 “stars” who will not really be going to Mars in “Stars On Mars”:

Lance Armstrong, described as “Former Professional Road-Racing Cyclist and Investor.” Everybody has heard of him.

Natasha Leggero, “Comedian, Actress and Writer.” She looks familiar.

Marshawn Lynch, “Former Super Bowl Champion, Community Advocate and Entrepreneur.” He may be very well-known among sports fans.

Christopher Mintz-Plasse, “Widely known Comedic Actor.” More power to him, but he is not familiar to me.

Adam Rippon, “Olympic Figure Skater and TV personality.” I remember him!

Ronda Rousey, “Professional Wrestler and UFC Champion, Olympic Medalist and Actress.” I have definitely heard of her, but did not know she was an actress.

Tom Schwartz, “Television Personality and Restaurateur.” I have no idea who he is, but I am sure he is a very fine chef.

Richard Sherman, “Sports Analyst and Professional Football Player.” Again, sports fans might know him. 

Tinashe, “Multi-Platinum-Certified POP and R&B Disruptor, Singer, Songwriter and Dancer.” That’s a lotta stuff. I have never heard of her, but that should mean nothing to her.

Porsha Williams Guobadia, “Television Personality, Actress and Author.” She sounds like a woman of achievement, but I have never heard of her until now.

Tallulah Willis, “Entrepreneur and Artist.” For some reason, I am aware that she is one of the daughters of Bruce Willis and Demi Moore.

Ariel Winter, “SAG Award-Winning Actress and Producer.” For me personally, she is the most famous person on this list because she starred as Alex, the brainy middle child of Phil and Claire Dunphy, on “Modern Family,” one of the best -- and most successful -- situation comedies in the history of television.

Instead of rocketing to the red planet, the action in “Stars On Mars” will play out in what looks to be a mock outpost on the surface of Mars that was likely set up in a southwestern desert somewhere.

For some, this might revive memories of the Apollo moon landings of 1969 and the early 1970s, when some conspiracy theorists believed that the moon landings were secretly staged in a restricted, government-owned desert here on planet Earth.

All of this is not aimed at denigrating “Stars On Mars,” however.

Instead, the TV Blog applauds the audacity of Fox, and the showmanship that evidently went into the writing of a press release distributed just last week.

In many ways, the release is a masterpiece of over-the-top publicity copy. I am not saying this sarcastically either. I think it’s great, and its author (or authors) should receive a laurel and hearty handshake from whomever they report to.

Here is the way the show is described, in its entirety, at the very top of the release:

“ ‘Stars On Mars’ [is] an out-of-this-world new unscripted series, premiering Monday, June 5, (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.

“This summer, professional athletes, reality world megastars, triumphant entrepreneurs, renowned television and film actors, uproarious comedians and trailblazing entertainers will colonize, compete and conquer ‘Mars’ until there is one victorious space invader who will claim the title of ‘the brightest star in the galaxy.’

“Celebrities will ditch their jerseys, business suits and red carpet gowns for the ultimate attire -- an astronaut suit. Once on 'Mars,' this group of stars will receive interstellar assignments from legendary actor and 'Star Trek' icon William Shatner, who serves as Mission Control. Colonizing Mars could be our future . . . let’s send them first!”

All that and William Shatner too. How can it lose?

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