Pros: Steve Carell and John Malkovich; some good jokes from time to time; soundtrack Cons: Most of the jokes in the series are overtly political, others are too abstract; unclear ending to the Space Force season
Genre comedy, satire
Creators Greg Daniels, Steve Carell
Cast: Steve Carell (General Mark Naird), John Malkovich (Dr. Adrian Malory), Noah Emmerich (General Kick Grabaston), Alexey Vorobyov (Captain Yuri “Bobby” Telatovich), Bag Schwartz (F. Tony “Fuck Tony” Scarapiducci), Diana Silvers (Erin Naird), Tawnee Newsome (Captain Angela Ali), Lisa Kudrow (Maggie Naird), Don Lake (General Brad Gregory), etc.
Year of release 2020
Actually, the main idea of the series Space Force, written and produced by Steve Carell himself, is to ridicule the narrow-minded military, and, in general, the entire current US administration, meddling with dirty hands into the holy of holies of science – space research. It’s as if Steve Carell and everyone else involved with the show simultaneously forgot that the military has been in the space industry since the very beginning, since the late 40s. last century. Moreover, if it were not for the military, no space conquest would have happened at all. However, from the very first episode it is clear that the main target of the creators of Space Force is not the US armed forces, but the Donald Trump administration.
Steve Carell plays General Mark Naird, who takes command of the newly created Space Force. He and his family are incomplete, and this is an important plot twist, he moves to a secret base somewhere in Colorado, which absolutely everyone within a radius of 100 miles knows about. At the base there are: the brilliant scientist Dr. Adrian Malory (John Malkovich), who leads all research projects; General Naird’s completely pointless secretary, General Brad Gregory (Don Lake); a Russian spy (Captain Yuri “Bobby” Telatovich) pursuing General Naird’s daughter; social media specialist “Fuck Tony” Scarapiducci and many other equally funny characters. Over the course of 10 episodes, General Naird will have to manage this crowd of… incompetent slobs and try to overtake the Chinese in the new lunar race. In addition, Naird has certain problems in his relationship with his daughter and wife, which will distract him from the war in space.
I have the utmost respect for Steve Carell. He is not only an excellent comedic actor, as proven by the American version of The Office, but also a seriously underrated dramatic actor, with very strong tragic roles, just remember Evan Almighty, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, Foxcatcher, The Big Short or Vice. However, in Space Force he clearly followed the prevailing agenda in modern Hollywood of ridiculing the current government. In general, there is nothing wrong with this; satire and criticism of those in power are one of the important and effective levers of democracy, but lately this criticism has looked too much like bullying.
Moreover, right now the United States has something to be proud of in the space sector. The recent launch of Crew Dragon Demo-2, the continued deployment of the StarLink satellite constellation, the sixth mission of the new generation space shuttle Boeing X-37 (by the way, for the first time under the leadership of the United States Space Force), preparations for the launch of the Mars 2020 mission in July, preparations for the Crew Dragon USCV missions -1 and Starliner Boe-OFT 2, preparation for the launch of the American-Ukrainian Firefly Alpha rocket, etc. Why now was it necessary to make fun of the American military, who, according to the authors of the series, are only busy trying to curry favor with the president and start a third world war in space (of course, with China)?
Anyway, let’s get back to the series. In fact it is very uneven. Space Force has some really good jokes and even some very touching moments, such as during the lunar experiment on Earth, but there are also completely abstract and ridiculous gags, like a parrot in a spacesuit, combat nail scissors, or attempts to repair a satellite with the help of an astronaut. chimpanzee. Again, there is nothing wrong with abstract humor either, remember the same Monty Python or the recent satirical series Avenue 5 with Hugh Laurie, but mixing abstraction, political satire and tragicomedy in one bottle is not the best idea.
However, there are still three reasons to watch Space Force. These are Steve Carell, John Malkovich and Lisa Kudrow. If the first two actors do not need to be introduced, then few remember the name of the third actress; she is much better known as Phoebe from “Friends”. In Space Force, Lisa “Phoebe” Kudrow plays the slightly strange wife of General Naird.
Yes, and one more thing. Music and soundtrack. The music for the series was composed by composer Carter Burwell, known for his regular work with the Coen brothers. Burwell wrote music for Fargo, The Big Lebowski, No Country For Old Men, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, as well as Carol, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Being John Malkovich and other Oscar-winning films. Well, a special thank you to the team who selected the soundtrack: the songs that Steve Carell hums to himself are simply excellent.
But what is frankly disappointing is the vague and completely toothless finale of the season, which leaves room for a sequel. Let’s be honest, ten episodes of Space Force end in nothing. The ending just hangs in the void, like a hapless team of astronauts on an American lunar base. I just want to ask the authors: “Why all this?”, “What did you want to say by this?” Alas, judging by the ratings of the series, we will never get answers.
Despite the undoubted comic and dramatic talents of Steve Carell and John Malkovich, Space Force turned out to be a politically charged and simply not very funny series