Cover art for podcast Marooned! on Mars with Matt and Hilary

Marooned! on Mars with Matt and Hilary

116 EpisodesProduced by Matt Hauske & Hilary StrangWebsite

a kim stanley robinson read-along podcast with regular forays into utopia. hosted by some friends who are into communism, science fiction and other stuff

Support the Show

Supporting Marooned! on Mars with Matt and Hilary will ensure they keep making the show you love

financial supportSupport

The Martians 5-7: Uneventfulness, Gray Paint Patch Lichen, and Balderdash

Matt has overcome his rural inertia long enough to finally put out this episode! Hooray! 

This is the first episode that Matt and Hilary have recorded remotely. As such, there are some technical difficulties that we're still working out, so please be patient. (They're very minor and you probably wouldn't even notice if I didn't mention it.)

This time we discuss "Maya and Desmond," "Four Teleological Trails," and "Discovering Life."

In "Maya and Desmond," Matt and Hilary talk about the way the books depict major events while at the same time giving a sense of everydayness, uneventfulness, and mundanity. We talk about the entirely different perspective this story gives us of the events of the entirety of the Mars Trilogy, as it appears to span most of the 200-or-so-year span of the original books. It makes a difference to know that Hiroko's farm crew abandons the First Hundred in Red Mars not because of Hiroko but because Maya tipped Desmond off that (essentially) the cops were coming. We talk about the way this story condenses and elides time, and the ways people find to make their own lives even in moments of revolution.

In "Four Teleological Trails," Matt makes a weird connection with Edgar Allan Poe's "Man of the Crowd," probably just because anytime he reads anything with someone walking he thinks of "Man of the Crowd," but also because of the uncanny landscape that’s described, the ambiguity between nature and culture, the past and the future, the narrator's attempt to kill his parents by bringing them up Precipice Trail, and trail phantoming. We talk about haunting and discovering being flip sides of the same kind. Thanks to Listener Stever for pointing out (on the KSR Facebook fan page) that the "Dorr" who is mentioned refers to George Dorr, the driving force behind the  creation of Acadia National Park, making this story a clear reference to hiking there. This chapter explores the limits to the functionality of metaphor and seems repeatedly to undo the distinction between nature and culture.

Finally, in "Discovering Life," Matt gets a dose of nostalgia for Los Angeles traffic. Another story that highlights the everydayness and mundanity of space travel, "Discovering Life" is mostly melancholy with a hopeful ending. The mundane everydayness of this chapter is just a continuation of our own crappy reality, not the utopian hopefulness of the Mars Trilogy. The future depicted here feels much more like our present, or even our past, with the 1950s remaining a touchstone of something. The NASA press conference depicted all-too-eerily resembles those of the original space missions, especially in their clear domination by men. But it also depicts a nice sense of conviviality among co-workers (rocket scientists are laborers after all), and ends with the idea to "terraform Earth instead"--a good idea!

Thanks for listening, as always!

Email us at

Follow us on Twitter @podcastonmars

Leave us a voicemail on the app

Rate and review us on iTunes or wherever you listen to your podcasts!

Music by Spirit of Space

--- Send in a voice message:
Educational emoji reaction


Interesting emoji reaction


Funny emoji reaction


Agree emoji reaction


Love emoji reaction


Wow emoji reaction


Are you the creator of this podcast?

Verify your account

and pick the featured episodes for your show.

Listen to Marooned! on Mars with Matt and Hilary


A free podcast app for iPhone and Android

  • User-created playlists and collections
  • Download episodes while on WiFi to listen without using mobile data
  • Stream podcast episodes without waiting for a download
  • Queue episodes to create a personal continuous playlist
RadioPublic on iOS and Android
Or by RSS
RSS feed

Connect with listeners

Podcasters use the RadioPublic listener relationship platform to build lasting connections with fans

Yes, let's begin connecting
Browser window

Find new listeners

  • A dedicated website for your podcast
  • Web embed players designed to convert visitors to listeners in the RadioPublic apps for iPhone and Android
Clicking mouse cursor

Understand your audience

  • Capture listener activity with affinity scores
  • Measure your promotional campaigns and integrate with Google and Facebook analytics
Graph of increasing value

Engage your fanbase

  • Deliver timely Calls To Action, including email acquistion for your mailing list
  • Share exactly the right moment in an episode via text, email, and social media
Icon of cellphone with money

Make money

  • Tip and transfer funds directly to podcastsers
  • Earn money for qualified plays in the RadioPublic apps with Paid Listens