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SyFy Channel retro space opera 'Ascension' raises questions

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In a March 13, 2014 story, the Hollywood Reporter reveals the welcome news that the SyFy Channel is going to do a space adventure miniseries, “Ascension,” the first since the reboot of “Battlestar Galactica” went off the air. The show, which might go to a regular series if successful, has kind of a retro twist.

“Part Battlestar and part Downton Abbey, Ascension takes place on a century-long space shuttle journey, where hundreds of men, women and children left Earth behind at the start of the Cold War. Nearly 50 years after their covert 1963 mission launched with the intention of colonizing a new world, a young woman is mysteriously murdered, prompting the population to question the nature of the mission as they near the point of no return.”

Apparently the idea is to preserve a remnant of humanity just in case the Cold War went hot and the planet was destroyed in a nuclear war. However there are certain questions that arise from the concept.

It should be remembered that in 1963 the cutting edge of space travel consisted of singled piloted Mercury capsules being since into short jaunts to low Earth orbit. Even the detection of exo-solar planets was 30 or so years in the future. Actually going to one of them is still beyond 21st Century technology.

No doubt more will be revealed as the November, 2014 premier date draws nigh.

So how would the Kennedy Administration manage an interstellar colonization effort? One suspects that the miniseries will depict it being carried out using alien technology acquired at Area 51 or some such thing. Then the explanation would have to be made why the same technology was not used to do the moon landing.

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