Disappointments are common when practicing the “profession” of reviewing new TV shows for a living, but the lack of a preview screener for “Stars On Mars” was especially disappointing.
Without an opportunity to see this show in advance of its premiere Monday night on Fox, so many questions are left unanswered.
The show is a far-out reality-competition show that poses an important question that should be of interest to anyone concerned about the future of the planet Earth: If a group of celebrities (to apply the term loosely) are left to their own devices, could they survive on the red planet?
It is not an overstatement to say that this could have implications for the survival of human beings as a species.
Another question: Since this is a summer show here on Earth, is it also summer on Mars? The answer to that: Kind of.
Martian summer this year runs from July 12 to January 12 next year. So, if “Stars On Mars” makes it to July 12, then it will coincide with summer on Mars.
Space.com says daytime summer temperatures on Mars may get up to a temperate 70° Fahrenheit, but at night it can plummet to -100°. Better bring your parkas, celebronauts!
And question No. 3: Is there wine on Mars? This question arises because of a unique promotion staged by Fox last week in L.A. -- a two-day, pop-up wine bar with a Mars theme.
Fox’s “Mars Bar” was open this past Friday and Saturday, setting up shop in an existing L.A. restaurant known as the Scum & Villainy Cantina.” What’s in a name? We report, you decide.
The TV Blog loves an elaborate promotion such as this one because it represents a level of showmanship that is all too often neglected in showbiz today, including TV.
The press release sent out last Tuesday was a fun read, composed to reflect the lighthearted nature of this Mars mission, which in actual fact, is taking place here on Earth somewhere. The show’s faux Mars station is pictured above.
“Fox is inviting all wine lovers, space enthusiasts and TV fans to the official opening of ‘The Mars Bar’ -- an exclusive hosted wine bar pop-up coming to Los Angeles to celebrate Fox’s highly anticipated new unscripted series ‘Stars on Mars.’
“The Mars Bar [offers] guests the chance to experience the Red (Wine) Planet with series-inspired ‘Space Flights’ [and] astronaut charcuterie.” I wonder if these smoked meats are freeze-dried for space food.
The Mars Bar even came equipped with a “Mission Specialist Sommelier,” the release said. “Upon entering The Mars Bar, guests will be able to sample a curated selection of space-themed wines, specially chosen to reflect the allure and unexpected moments of the new series.
“From rich, robust reds to crisp and refreshing whites, each glass will be a voyage of flavors that transport your senses to uncharted territories.
“Let the Mission Specialist Sommelier take you on a star-studded odyssey to Mars through a journey of the senses. Enjoy a tantalizing wine flight and catch a glimpse of the new season while you sip.” A TV Blog tip of the hat to the p.r. team that wrote this.
Hosted by 92-year-old William Shatner, “Stars On Mars” poses various survival challenges to its participants until at the end of the show one of them is crowned “the brightest star in the galaxy.”
As noted a few weeks ago in an earlier column about “Stars On Mars,” at least some of the show’s 12 celebrity participants may not be famous to many.
But the fact that the TV Blog is not familiar with most of them does not mean they are not categorizable as celebrities.
Toward that end, here are the 12 participants, without descriptions of who they are, as a test of your pop-culture knowledge: Lance Armstrong, Natasha Leggero, Marshawn Lynch, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Adam Rippon, Ronda Rousey, Tom Schwartz, Richard Sherman, Tinashe, Porsha Williams Guobadia, Tallulah Willis and Ariel Winter.