Here’s a little something on April Fool’s Day that might be too good to be true. (Spoiler alert: It is too good to be true, but here you go anyway.) VH1 announced today it is teaming up again with Dating Naked producer Lighthearted Entertainment for a new dating series SPACE D.A.T.E. (Dating Above the Exosphere), which seems to be just the reality show astrophysicists have been waiting for. The premise: 20 Earthlings — pre-tested for hot-or-not sexiness, of course (but curiously not luminosity) — are chosen to enter a Martian “Love Pod,” where they will complete challenges “in the hopes of finding something more stimulating than just evidence of alien life forms in outer space.” (Yes, the logline is still a bit nebula-ous). Also in the pod is a robot named B.A.R. — Bi-curious Androgynous Rover — who adds to the drama.
“These brave individuals have committed to spending years of their lives on Mars,” VH1 President Tom Calderone was coerced into saying in the press release. “We figured that we may as well give them an opportunity to be with someone hot.”
If it was real it would be just the latest legit Mars-centric reality project that has been percolating in the social experiment genre — though certainly (well, probably) the only one with an Androgynous Rover. Last year, Endemol (after Lionsgate TV had kicked the tires) teamed with a company looking to train and send people on a one-way trip to colonize the Red Planet for a series that follows their training over the course of several years. Also, Thinkfactory Media (Hatfields & McCoys, Gene Simmons: Family Jewels) has partnered with The Mars Society on an unscripted project that would document a yearlong Mars simulation in the Canadian Arctic.
Dating Naked returns to a planet near you this summer.