Space: it's the final frontier AND somehow the least popular frontier. A couple decades of successful shuttle launches passed unnoticed. A slew of orbital science experiments didn't excite anybody. Even the Space Race wasn't the nation-gripping drama we decided it was retroactively. Why isn't space travel capturing more imaginations? Why aren't people more stoked about it? And would it help if we did a rad podcast episode about the most kickass exploits in all of space history?

On this week's episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by 'American Dad' writer, Cracked legend, and prince of all our hearts Soren Bowie for a celebration of outer space heroics. They'll dig into the death-defying (and sometimes, death-receiving) bravery that's driven decades of space exploration, even though only a few of those bold explorers became famous in the aftermath. Plus, enjoy a special bonus story of how the very best of us went out into the universe in the form of a space probe.

Footnotes:

American Dad on TBS

Why 2013 Gave Us Reason to Care About Space Again (Cracked)

Dispatches From Goddamn Space (Cracked Video)

Kennedy, Before Choosing the Moon: 'I'm Not That Interested in Space' (The Atlantic)

Pence vows America will return to the moon. The history of such promises suggests otherwise. (The Washington Post)

5 Astronauts More Badass Than Any Action Movie Hero (Cracked)

5 Famous Space Missions That Almost Ended In Disaster (Cracked)

Meet the real ironman of spaceflight: Valery Polyakov (Ars Technica)

March 22, 1995: Longest Human Space Adventure Ends (Wired)

Farewell Neil Armstrong, the Ultimate Test Pilot (Wired)

5 Soviet Space Programs That Prove Russia Was Insane (Cracked)

5 Groundbreaking Firsts That Your History Books Lied About (Cracked)

The First Woman in Space: Valentina Tereshkova (Mental Floss)

STS-49 Mission Page (NASA)

TP-82 Cosmonaut survival pistol (Wikipedia)

Boldly, Where No Dog Had Gone Before (The New York Times) -- piece about the Museum Of Jurassic Technology's tribute to Soviet space dogs

Special announcement: see the first-ever Cracked Podcast LIVE TOUR this spring! Get your tickets now for: Thursday April 11th -- Lincoln Hall, Chicago IL and Friday April 12th -- Amsterdam Bar and Hall, St. Paul MN.

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