08 December 2005

Space Cadets

As I appear to be the only one amongst us on the UK side of the pond, I thought I'd share with you news of a new TV prank running here at the moment. In general I don't really go for such things, but given the premise of this one is that the people are being duped into thinking they're the first UK space tourists, currently undertaking training in Russia, prior to be flown into orbit for a week, it will be interesting to see if the hoaxers can actually get away with it...

You can learn more about the show and follow their progress here...


...but in summary, so far the TV company advertised for people willing to take part on a risk taking show; they weren't told the nature of the eventual programme, but the initial applicants were run through a series of tests which the show's psychologists devised to try and find the most suitable; things like checking them for suggestibility, etc., and more practical matters like if they suffer claustrophobia.

They narrowed it down to about ten (included three planted actors) before finally revealing that they were to be sent into space, and giving them the final option whether they still wanted to go ahead with it. There were no dropouts! At this point they were flown to the Russian training camp - or rather, they were flown around UK for hours, the final destination being an ex-US airbase in southern England, made over to appear as if it's in Russia.

They are to undergo training there, and the "best of the best" of them selected for their journey to space... or rather, their journey in a mock-up capsule within a huge warehouse which is somehow to become a huge soundstage - convincing enough to trick them they're in space.

It all sounds kind of unlikely, but will be interesting just how far the programme makers can take it before any of them rumble what's really going on!


Blogger CatsFive said...

I read about this fake space camp and [trying out a UK accent] I think it's a bolly great idea. OK, that sucked. But still, I think it's just bloody great. The West should mine the one resource they have an infinite supply of: Stupid People. Who the hell would believe that they're going into space? This would be a must-see to me. What will they do in the show? Has anything leaked out? I think that instead of going into space (how will they fake the weightlessness?), they should have a sort of Challenger-like accident at "launch" where the capsule doesn't get into orbit but instead breaks apart and ends up deep in the Indian ocean. They should work it out so that the cameras don't work and there's a guy and a girl in there and they're pretty much left with, like, say, six hours of oxygen and they're faced with the idea that well, six hours to go, what are you going to do? Then sell it as a porn DVD separately or on a PPV arrangement. LOL. This rescue could be made pretty convincingly. They could drop the capsule into a large aquarium (with sharks or fish swimming around outside the portals) and then stage a huge rescue. Then they bring the capsule up via a helicopter and land it in Trafalgar square to a big ceremony with a huge crowd and a huge banner that says "Welcome Home (you DUMB FUCKS)". That's what I'd do. heheh


1:17 PM, December 08, 2005  
Anonymous Lee H. said...

Monty, have another pot of coffee! :D

I don't normally go for those kind of "jokes" being played on people, either, but I have to admit this one sounds pretty funny. It'll be funnier if the ruse is actually not TOO convincing... a few obvious flubs that should tip people off ought to pop up here and there, just to see how gullible the people involved are. :)

2:05 PM, December 08, 2005  
Blogger CatsFive said...

By the way, it's on its own Channel 4 Microsite in the UK. Do NOT miss the tour of the base. I found this article which details the contestants. This article also states, "
Producers of new hoax reality series Space Cadets have emptied Russian supermarkets of supplies in order to convince contestants they are really in Russia." Wow, looks like they're putting on the dog for this one.


2:11 PM, December 08, 2005  
Blogger Superfan said...

they were talking about it on another show this afternoon - whether making people the object of ridicule (in a way) was a good thing - but as someone commented, it's really the TV people who have the most to lose if they're rumbled... after all, there won't be a series for them to broadcast if the truth comes out! and someone else - themselves once a contestant on Big Brother - pointed out that the reason people volunteer for these things is because they just want to be on TV - so long as they're made "famous" they probably won't care that they've been duped.

as for the gravity issue, as noted, these are gullible people.. apparently they're to be told that the spacecraft has some kind of fake gravity device.

by the way, the link to the microsite was already in my full post... were my extra words wasted? ;)

4:11 PM, December 08, 2005  
Blogger CatsFive said...

I claim the tried-and-true "blame the coffee" defense. Lee hit the nail right on the head. I honestly think this is the only reality show whose premise really excites me! I can't wait to see it (somehow). I wonder if it'll show up in the torrents... in fact, I'll check into that.

4:44 PM, December 08, 2005  
Blogger Lee H. said...

Jeremy, on a side-note, I only see one link in your original post:


Did Blogger eat one of your links?

My word verification thingy says tbozki, which would be a great name for the pseudo-Russian republic these guys pseudo-land in. :D

10:28 PM, December 08, 2005  
Blogger Superfan said...

Lee: that was the link I was referring to.. if you notice, it expands to that full microsite URL when you get there.

and speaking of the Russian thing, from last night's show, I think if anything will give it away it could well be the actors playing the Russian military - couple of them talking in Russian outside the bus bringing in the would-be space tourists, obviously trying to build up the idea that they were indeed in Russia.. but one of them looked close to breaking into a grin.

5:36 AM, December 09, 2005  

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