Shatner Claims To Know About Life On Mars…Really

The live chat with William Shatner last Friday was rife with tech issues, but it is now available online (and totally audible). The whole vid (below) is about 40 minutes long. Due to the various tangents, he ended up taking only eight questions, none of which were related to Star Trek. The most interesting part was regarding Shatner’s beliefs on ET and his claim to have inside info.

Shat believes in ET, claims to know about life on Mars
The seventh question in the chat (at time mark 5:27) was “Do you believe in Extra-terrestrial life?” Shatner replied in the affirmative saying “of course, it is beyond a certainty that there is life out there.” Shat then went on to say (in complete seriousness) that he had insider info on Martians:

I will let you in on a little secret, that I have been told not to reveal. So I wont reveal who told me, but there is going to be new information about Mars. It wont be too long away.

Full video recording of live chat

Complete list of questions and timing
41:05 Intro/ Bill and Liz talk about technology
33:10 Q1: What kind of art do you like?
28:43 Q2: Have any of your horses been in the Kentucky Derby?
25:10 Q3: What is Shiva Club? [new comedy film Shat is directing]
15:55 Q4: Is there anything you have a burning desire to do that you haven’t done yet?
12:55 Q5: Why did you go back to series television with Boston Legal?
11:52 Q6: Any follow-up to album Has Been?
5:27 Q7: Do you believe in Extra-terrestrial life?
3:01 Q8: Is “Invasion Iowa” going to be rebroadcast or on DVD?



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Shat is where it’s at.

Heh, it was a shame that the chat with the fans beforehand was more entertaining because of the technical issues. Oh well, still awesome. :D

40 minutes… Wow. I love ya, Bill, but not that much.

Any interesting highlights?

Shat is where it’s at, indeed, but what’s he been smokin’?

Life on Mars! Right. A little guy in a Roman helmet and hightops named Marvin.

When Martians come to harvest us for food, Shat will make sure George Takei is on top of the menu.


Chicken Takaei? 8-p

All he said was he had some inside info on the subject of life on Mars. That could mean anything from a microbe to little green men. I think people really need to understand what they are reading before jumping to conclusions. Geez, give the man a break!

Life on Mars is not impossible. Maybe in the past, maybe still existing. Until we’ve been there and proved it not there, we can’t say it is impossible. There are worse places on earth with life. Besides New Jersey, I mean.

even microbial life found on Mars would be a HUGE HUGE deal. Its lookin more likely we would find it on Enceledus as that as liquid water, organic molecules in a warm inner core…oh yes. Life is common thru out the billions of stars..

Beware the Spiders from Mars

I for one welcome our new martian overlords.™

Oh, I thought he knew about the show Life on Mars with Colm Meaney

It’s strange, the idea that microbial life on Mars would be some HUGE HUGE deal that would change our world forever. A century or so ago, astronomers were routinely discussing canals and civilisations on Mars, writing articles and giving excited popular talks and presentations on the subject. It was a bit like Global Warming. That died a death, but belief in life on Mars was routine really up until the space probes got there.

When I was a kid in the 70s I had a number of astronomy books from the 1940s and 50s (an aunt worked in a library and would give me books she thought I’d be interested in when they were withdrawn from lending) and they routinely discussed how the variations of colouration on the surface were due to some kind of vegetation growing and dying back with the seasons. Even worse, they discussed the carboniferous swamps of Venus. Heh.

People have forgotten that when Mariner 4 got there, the shock to the scientific community was that Mars was a dead, cratered world with barely any atmosphere and clearly barren. It’s only since then that our paradigm has shifted to an expectation that other worlds are barren and life a rare and amazing thing.

Truth is, most of the general public and media won’t care much at all. It’ll be front page news for a day, then knocked off the headlines by some national leader’s wife being prettier than expected, or something, The major significance will be that the Greens will have the leverage they need to declare all space a “wilderness” and that’ll be that for anything beyond LEO. On that basis, pray for a dead Mars, Europa and Enceladus.

Anyone interested in the history of the study of Mars, this online book is excellent-

Thanks, Bill.

Hold up there, people…

The Shat never said anything about live on Mars, he just said that he believes in extra-terrestrial life, and then went on to speak about Mars. He never said that there was going to be any new information about LIFE on Mars, just Mars in general. Let’s not make the mistake of reading “extra-terrestrials” and “new info on Mars” as “extraterrestrials on Mars.”

Besides, there is fossil evidence that there was, at one point in time, microbacterial life forms on Mars in the ancient past (before the water deposits froze after collecting in the poles and underground).

could simply be a bad joke regarding the up coming David E Kelly brittish rip “Life On Mars” drama…

“Besides, there is fossil evidence that there was, at one point in time, microbacterial life forms on Mars in the ancient past ”

Sorry, no.

Those formations were shown to be chemical, not biological, in origin.

Is William full of Shat?

Well, he’s wrong about life on Mars. All the scientists who have been stationed there for decades and have engaged in major excavations and extensive soil analysis have concluded that there never have been microbes on Mars; and if Spock’s torpedo soft lands there, he’s s.o.l.

“Ten years later, the results have not been verified. Skeptics have found non-biological explanations for every piece of evidence that was presented on Aug. 6, 1996. And though they still vigorously defend their claim, the NASA scientists who advanced it now stand alone in their belief.

“We certainly have not convinced the community, and that’s been a little bit disappointing,” said David McKay, a NASA biochemist and leader of the team that started the scientific episode.”

I guess we’ll know one way or another eventually.

Perhaps he means evidence of now extinct life on Mars.

(Intelligent life) ;)

As a matter of fact old Viking probes conducted some tests that were inconclusive about life on Mars. And there are loads of data being analysed by now, so if someone told Shat there will be news we may just wait and see

Do you think when we find those martians, we’ll finally take back into possession the Eludium Q-32 Explosive Space Modulator?

As much as I would love to believe in life on Mars, I doubt Shatner has the “inside track.” I think that was a classic, deadpan Kirk “fake-out.” As #22 correctly pointed out, the Viking results were inconclusive (but not encouraging). The Shat was pulling our collective leg. As Spock would say in the Corbomite Maneuver; “(shaking his head in the negative) However it WAS well played.”


Only if Duck Dodgers and Eager Young Space Cadet are on the job!!! Provided, of course, they don’t blow themselves to smithereens…

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

I knew it! The scientists have finally discovered the Martian Cities buried deep underground, where millions of hairless, big-headed aliens have survived for millenia ever since their world was rendered unfit for life by a massive nuclear war. Oh, and in the interval, the Martians have all developed psychic abilities…and six arms. Pretty awesome, if you ask me…

You gotta love Shatner… :)

#15 Actually buddy, if you watched the video… the Shat DOES mention something about life on Mars. He makes it apparent that scientists have discovered (most likely with NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, or the Odyssey Orbiter) new evidence of life, and they now know where to look. I have done some personal researching, and in fact, the Odyssey Orbiter did just find SALT deposits on Mars, here is the quote from NASA’s website: “NASA’s Mars Odyssey orbiter has found evidence of salt deposits. These deposits point to places where water once was abundant and where evidence might exist of possible Martian life from the Red Planet’s past.”

Yes at some point we will learn something new about Mars. Thanks Bill.

Re: #4. crazydaystrom

“Life on Mars! Right. A little guy in a Roman helmet and hightops named Marvin.”

You are making me very, very angry… [said with a PeeWee Herman type of voice].

I loved that guy. He was my favourite cartoon character. And, Bill, this time you are really scaring me. REALLY.




The rovers on Mars right now are not even designed to look for life; they are field geologists. The orbiters can point to and photograph where water most likely flowed on Mars (and it’s likely that water was very salty). But as for finding life, I don’t think ANY imperical scientist would make that conclusion JUST yet. Let alone call up Bill Shatner and let him leak it on Shatnervision! Come on; either the Shat misunderstood the info, or he’s joking. I have a contact at JPL and I’ve been there a couple times. They are NOT the types to make rash conclusions! But, it would be deeply cool if they DID find even simple multicellular life form. Then extraterrestrial life would be a FACT, not fiction! I’d love to see that day….and the Phoenix spacecraft lands on May 25th. With the Mars Science Laboratory rover following next year (if all goes well). Check out for more.

If he’s serious, his wife should take him to the doctor. My father-in-law had Alzheimer’s for a while before he was formally diagnosed and if you were only talking to him for a few moments at a time he could seem totally lucid. If it was a prolonged conversation, he’d start giving little signs that something was wrong.

Bill has me worried. Either that or he is pulling many legs…


Life On Mars, you sure he wasn’t talking about the David Bowie song or the BBC series?


I think he is absolutely serious… and not crazy. Go to NASA’s website and look at what exactly the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is designed to detect… it’s quite intriguing.

And if that wasn’t interesting enough, here is a link to all of the instruments the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter carries:

Apparently they can now look underground to see underground sources of water… And I believe I recall the Shat making a mention of this…

Shat happens…

But how the funk doesnt he know about online chat?

Oh this is just hilarious. It’s like trying to explain setting the VCR clock to my uncle.


Sientists stationed on Mars? R U kidding me?? Who was that? There were only probes there yet….

After reading all 38 posts (at time of writing this) I’m really quite surprised at the comments.
This is after all a fansite based upon Star Trek.

Richard C Hoagland,NASA’s technical advisor to Walter C. Concrite (during the 1st Moon landing) once told about how Nasa/Jpl invited Gene Roddenberry and a bunch of other science fiction heavys to witness the Mars Viking probes first images sent back in the 70’s at JPL in Pasadena.
When the first photos of the surface of mars came in live, Gene stood up and said out loud “that looks like Arizona!”…
The first photos showed a grey/blue skyline with a desert looking landscape.
Richard continued on saying that the next batch of photos that came in about 15 min later had a different looking skyline and a more red color to the landscape. nasa/jpl had altered the colors on the tv monitors to make the Martian planet look more alien.
Why would they do that you ask?
Alien life is covered up by the government/nasa/jpl. Has been since Roswell. Jpl reluctantly reported water on Mars a few years ago. But it was backpage news. Sabastian, there are those that work at Jpl that think there doing the right thing but there’s also upper managment that insure that the truth dosnt get out. And that truth is that there was life on Mars and prob still is.
As Tuvok would say,”its a class M planet with massive life readings under the surface, Captain.
If anyone want to find out more about all the lies you believe in check:

See you guys at the Con this Sunday !

Whatever the chances for extraterrestrial life may be; Bill’s merely talking about his personal positive view on that subject, about possible consequences the idea of extraterrestrial life and a wider perspective in this regard may have for our future – combined with some of his famous deadpan attitude.

If you had watched the entire video, you’d have realised that this man is making more sense than you’ll ever wanted to know – and he’s definitely sane.

Shatner is hilarious! I just learned how to “google” things…

#4 and #29

I do believe that this important announcement will be that the Earth is obstructing the Martian’s view of Venus.

#13 Ian B; you have many excellent points, and I agree life on Mars would not change the world (in these cynical times, many wouldn’t believe it anyway). And I remember as a kid, reading texts making references to lichen or ‘simple animals’ that ‘must’ populate the Martian surface and account for the ‘green patches’ along the ‘canals.’ I think Mariner 4’s first fly-by images of a moon-like Mars (it never got to photograph the more interesting parts; Mariner 9 would have that honor) shattered a lot of dreams in 1965! Vikings 1 and 2 made some cautiously optimistic. And in these times of diminished expectations, primitive life on Mars would not change things to the general public, but to a few of us it might serve to fire the imagine and greatly increase the odds for life in the universe. Might even put a few more nickels in NASA’s coffers!

#22 – A) The only conclusion I drew from probing Mars is that it’s as cold as a well digger’s ass up there.


B) I’m not that old.

Yeah, right. Even though they don’t have anything on Mars capable of identifying life, NASA found it and told Bill Shatner, not the rest of us.


#46 –
Why not? He’s William Shatner, for crying out loud! The Original Space Action Hero! Why wouldn’t they tell give him a “sneak peak” at their info? I mean, he IS a millionare actor who has worked on movie sets with a higher level of confidentiality than most government operations, besides being Captain Kirk. I think the man can keep a secret.

Bill… you’re embarrassing yourself again. I love you, but stop it.

Re: #7. asc1138

“…All he said was he had some inside info on the subject of life on Mars. That could mean anything from a microbe to little green men…”

I never did believe in little green men.


#40. Answering your points regarding a conspiracy of silence at JPL; believe me, they’d shout it from the MOUNTAIN TOPS if there were life on Mars! Poor souls could use the funding! No conspiracy; just bad luck. And the initial Viking surface images were mis-calibrated; because scientists on the ground EXPECTED a blue sky, and thought the pinkish yellow hues were the mistake! The original “raw” photos were, in fact, of the right color; but ‘corrected’ (using the colors on a color ‘target’ affixed to the spacecraft) to look blue (the assumed color). I know I won’t change any minds on the Elysiam face/optical illusion “conspiracy” issue, so I won’t try (but Google the latest hi-res face on Mars pics if you don’t believe me; see if you still see a face). But truly; I would LOVE IT if there were life on another planet in our solar system; intelligent or not! But I think Shatner is just being Shatner; the publicity hound. And judging by all this feedback, it worked!