'Space Force': Political parody tackling Trump’s space dominance dream

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Wed, 03 Jun 2020 - 04:32 GMT

File - Space Force poster.

File - Space Force poster.



CAIRO – 3 June 2020: Season one from "Space Force" was released on May 29, 2020 on Netflix.

The new workplace comedy revolves around the four star general Mark R. Naird (Steve Carell) who has his own dreams of running the Air Force , and all of a sudden his dreams came true when he finds himself appointed to lead the newly formed sixth branch of the US Armed Forces, which is Space Force.

Mark takes his family and moves to a remote base in Colorado, where he and a colorful team of scientists and “Spacemen” are tasked by the White House with getting American boots on the moon again in a hurry and achieving total space dominance by 2024.

The comedy series stars Steve Carell (General Mark R. Naird), John Malkovich (Dr. Adrian Mallory), Diana Silvers (Erin Naird), Tawny Newsome (Captain Angela Ali), Ben Schwartz (F. Tony Scarapiducci, aka “Fuck Tony”), Jimmy O. Yang (Dr. Chan Kaifang), Lisa Kudrow (Maggie Naird), Alex Sparrow (Yuri ‘Bobby’ Telatovich), Don Lake (General Brad Gregory), Noah Emmerich (General Kick Grabaston), Fred Willard (Fred Naird), Jessica St. Clair (Kelly King) and Jane Lynch, Larry Joe Campbell, Patrick Warburton, Diedrich Bader, and Dan Bakkedahl as the (Joint Chiefs of Staff).


The co-creators of "Space Force" are Carell and Greg Daniels, who are at the same time "The Office" makers, so the audience was so eager to watch "Space Force" and had high expectations for it.

Such high expectations and comparison between the two series negatively affected "Space Force" as many see that technically it doesn’t have the same artistic value as "The Office". But, we have to evaluate each series separately.

Unlike most series, "Space Force" started strong then gradually became weaker. The series makers should have built on the strong start but unfortunately they didn’t.

The first episodes are far better than the other episodes, especially episode one; may be because it is the only episode written by Daniels and Carell, or because it housed late veteran actor Fred Willard as Naird’s father in his last role.

The workplace comedy is inspired by the real Space Force which is the newest branch of the US military.

The Space Force series makers intend to mock Trump's dream to impose US total space dominance. Despite Donald Trump’s name is never spoken in the series, it was clear that they meant Trump.

The series has a good portion of comedy and funny quotes, such as the scene when Naird said: ''The defence secretary announces that the president has tweeted his wish for “Boots on the moon by 2024. Actually it said ‘Boobs on the moon’ but we believe that to be a typo.”

Space Force series will not make the audience burst out laughing but they will laugh in some scenes.

It is a funny series but not a pure comedy one; it is also some sort of parody tackling Trump's dream of dominating space.

"Space Force" contains the three main elements that should exist in any comic series which are comedy, drama and satire, which is a good thing but the bad thing is that everything stopped in the middle.

Comedy isn't comic enough, drama isn't dramatic enough and satire isn't satirical enough!! And here lies the main dilemma of "Space Force".


The series contains some good comic subplots such as the one of US First Lady's redesign of Space Force's uniform which was really funny.

On the other hand there are some vague drama lines like the one of famed actress Lisa Kudrow who plays the wife of Naird, we find in the second episode, she is serving a jail sentence for 40 years, but it wasn’t clear what was her crime.

John Malkovich brilliantly embodied the role of Dr. Adrian Mallory, the sharp and arrogant head science advisor, who is hoping to prevent space from becoming the next great international battlefield.

Malkovich formed a good duet with Carell and even managed to steal the camera from the veteran Carell in some scenes. Carell was not in his peak, yet his performance is still captivating.

Jimmy O Yang and Ben Schwartz provided to the point performances, nothing outstanding maybe because all the supporting characters are not well defined in the plot.

Diana Silver provided a convenient performance reflecting the character of Erin Naird.

Lisa Kudrow is a veteran comedian who has a very good sense of humor but she was underused in Maggie Naird's role. If her drama line were drawn better, she would have definitely given a better performance.

"Space Force" cast is strong in general and delivers some really good performances but needed a better plot, drama lines and more defined characters.

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