National Geographic Channel's game-changing hybrid narrative/documentary series Mars opened its second season tonight with a bang.
The new season jumps ahead five years into the future - it's now April 2042, some characters are on their way back to Mars and some are about to leave. We're immediately introduced to Olympus Town's new neighbors, Lukrum.
Lukrum, unlike the IMSF (International Mars Science Foundation) is not there for science, but for profit. They're on Mars to look for water for the future colonists that will arrive on the planet in the coming years and decades. Like most multi-national corporations on Earth they don't care about what gets in their way - they just care about how to get what they want.
As the years move on with IMSF not finding anything new on Mars and not moving quickly enough with their long term goals of figuring out a way to move more humans to the planet the fear of budget cuts and disinterest in the project grow. With a Chinese space program working on a space station and a now Lukram on Mars the competitors are closing in - but at the same time causing comfortability in their long term stability. Lukram in a deal for access to energy and water will help them create solar panels which will move the plan to terraform Mars quicker.
As with last season of NatGeo's Mars, the show cuts back and forth between the fast paced narrative that has everything a great sci fi show would have to a slower paced interviews and short doc pieces that bring us to the far reaches of planet Earth. This season is no different - just everything is turned up a notch. The action, the sets and the stories are bigger, better shot and more intense overall. We add in some potential romance and intrigue with the new colony and the show is now really growing into itself and it's tremendous potential.
Thank goodness National Geographic saw the potential in an under appreciated first season and green lit, not only a new season but bigger everything. This is a show that deserves to be seen.
Beyond Mars, National Geographic Channel has a wide range of films and tv shows like Neil DeGrasse Tyson's Cosmos, America Inside Out with Katie Couric, and Emmy award winning documentary on the LA riots - LA 92. Comicbook.com previously reviewed their Will Smith led documentary series, One Strange Rock which used incredible visuals to show the oddest and most interesting parts of our world.