“We sure lucked out with planet earth,” says Will Smith, wearing a look of humble wonder and opening up the doors to a pool area with a nice view. “Blue skies, rolling hills, water everywhere. I mean, this place is nice.” Yes— that Will Smith. The Fresh Prince, Agent J, movie star, I Am legend is now hosting a National Geographic documentary series called “One Strange Rock.” For all planet earth enthusiasts, natural history junkies, and Will Smith fans, this series is one to change your world perspective.
Each episode opens up with panoramic imagery, satellite pictures, and a storyline for how the earth formed and effects us today. Smith, the host and earth enthusiast talks with fellow astronauts and scientists, chiming in every once in a while with a punchline to make sure your fascination with the galaxy is still in stretch. Through each perspective, astronauts share their unique days in space and why the story of our extraordinary earth is uniquely brimming with life among a largely unknown harsh dark vacuum.
Episode one opens up with Chris Hadfield, a Canadian retired astronaut, explaining the processes that allow organisms to breathe. He remarks on his days in space when he fixed the Hubble telescope-while going blind. Yet, Hadfield kept his stress in check and saved a telescope for all nations. Imagine that stress. Meanwhile, after 665 weightless days in space, astronaut Peggy Whitson smashes through the atmosphere on her last journey home to planet earth. She recalls what she saw, felt, and how coming back to earth has changed her whole perspective on life. The series continues with topics on living off other planets, survival for humans, and life beyond our planet.
For all those who wonder who, where, why, when we got here, this series is one for you. We sure do live on one strange rock, yet this series will fulfill you with surprise and admiration for what we call home. The series is available for streaming on Netflix.