My faith in humanity reached a new high when headlines concerning the Curiosity Rover flooded Facebook and Twitter. Were people really interested in science again, the way kids in the '60s were glued to the TV for every launch NASA propelled into space? Maybe.
And at first, news that Will.i.am would be broadcasting a song on Mars made me a little bit sad inside. Today, at 4 p.m. EST, the Black Eyed Peas rapper's newest single, "Reach for the Stars," lifted from the upcoming and horribly-titled album #willpower will be the first music to echo off the rusty carmine canyons and mountains of Mars. Really? This is really the first impression we, as humanity, were going to make on the Red Planet? Ick. What happened to putting Mozart and Chuck Berry on golden records and tossing them out into the abyss?
But the more I thought of it, the better this idea seemed. First, no Mr. Bowie, there isn't any life on Mars and we should be grateful. No one up there on that dead, desert rock is even going to be listening! It's just the folks down here with brains that resemble the endless emptiness of Mars.
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Second, Mars may need women, but NASA needs cash. Unlike during the Cold War, space programs aren't written blank checks anymore and they rely on the private sector more than ever. Even Mars One, the Dutch initiative to send a colony to the Red Planet (which will inevitably result in some form of murder/suicide) is relying on advertising dollars to get their program off the ground.
While NASA could have chosen dozens of tunes with more artistic merit, even the sounds of my brother kicking a piano down an elevator shaft, Will.i.am is pretty fucking rich. It sucks when your favorite band sells out, but NASA should whore itself out to whoever has the highest dollar. In return, we'll be getting way more cool shit from them in the future. Things like more spiders on cocaine and more jet fuel made from chicken fat. Thanks a lot, Willy Boy!