Sunday, 14 April 2013

Welcome To Mars: Conclusion

In James Blish's Welcome To Mars, before Dolph Haertel, then Nanette Ford, travel to Mars, NASA has not yet put anyone on the Moon. Over one Martian, two Terrestrial, years later, the Cold War has ended and a UN Space Force fleet reaches Mars.

The rapid deployment of such a fleet has become possible because:

Dolph's and Nanette's parents and one influential contact had remained irrationally convinced that "the children" were still alive on Mars;

the knowledge that Dolph had discovered antigravity had facilitated the development of an improved ion-drive for spaceships.

Is it either politically or technologically plausible that so much could be achieved so soon with so little? I think that it is as implausible as the Martian organisms that Dolph and Nanette find. Thus, either no one could survive on Mars long enough to be rescued or a very different story needs to be told about it.

I think that Jim Blish said that the film of Welcome To Mars would have shown Nanette giving birth on Mars although, of course, this does not happen in the juvenile novel.

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