Hermits and misanthropes with a secret hunger for fame: listen up! Ever have those days (ha) where you just wish you could leave this filthy Mother Earth behind to start a brave new world on greener pastures? Well trade in green for red and Mars One has an opportunity for you that is literally out of this world. As long as you're OK with also being part-time entertainment for the rest of the folks with both feet planted firmly on this planet's soil and no hope for a return ticket home.
If this completely intrepid and terrifying endeavor sounds like a worthy trade-off (and actually a real thing that could happen, because — I mean, really? Is this a real thing that is happening?), then join the 200,000 other folks around the world who have already applied for the chance to be a "one-way astronaut," which may or may not be one of the more anxiety-laden phrases I've ever heard (I've seen that Gravity trailer way too many times).
According to the Mars One website, “This mission to Mars can be the biggest media event in the world," explained Paul Römer, co-creator of Big Brother and project ambassador. If the whole thing didn't make you queasy with anticipation of the potential for this all to go really, really badly, perhaps his next quote might. Römer touts the brilliance of his own ideas as simply thus: "Reality meets talent show with no ending and the whole world watching. Now there's a good pitch." Forget Super Bowl ads, Mars One will be the most expensive series to advertise in ever, I bet. (As long as it gets the worldwide pick-up it.)
But outside of that, the project seems to be taken very seriously. Which, good, yes: it does involve interplanetary travel and a new frontier for the human race. After all, it will be the first human settlement outside of our home planet. Ever. Certainly no small feat, and one that will undoubtedly bring about huge insights into our solar system, the universe, as well as the perseverance of humanity and life outside of its traditional bounds. Television for the next chapter of human existence!
But don't expect a bunch of typical reality stars to make up the newest arm of humanity (thank god). According to the mission's leader, Dutch entrepreneur Bas Lansdorp, "we’re not looking for individuals, we are looking for perfect teams ... They must be healthy, smart enough to learn new skills and with a character and mind-set that can function in a small group."
Not sure if the colonization reality show/project is exactly the right fit? Don't worry too much — the first 4 folks to head to Mars (2 men, 2 women) won't be shuttling off until 2022.