Mars Is Heaven!

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"Mars Is Heaven!"
Author Ray Bradbury
Country  USA
Language English
Genre(s) Science fiction short story
Published in Planet Stories
Media type Print (Magazine)
Publication date 1948

"Mars Is Heaven!" is a science fiction short story by Ray Bradbury originally published in 1948 in Planet Stories. "Mars Is Heaven!" was among the stories selected in 1970 by the Science Fiction Writers of America as one the best science fiction short stories published before the creation of the Nebula Awards. As such, it was published in The Science Fiction Hall of Fame Volume One, 1929-1964. It also appears as the sixth chapter of The Martian Chronicles, retitled "The Third Expedition".

Plot summary[edit]

It is the 1960s and the first spaceship from Earth is landing on Mars. The crew are shocked to discover a Rockwellian small town, eerily similar to those they left on Earth. The strangely familiar people in the town believe it is 1926. Crew members soon discover old friends and deceased relatives in the town. Those who had been ordered to stay behind and guard the rocket abandon their posts in order to join the reunions and festivities.

Members of the crew split up to spend the night in the homes of their lost comrades and relatives. The ship's captain, John Black, remains skeptical, and realizes in the middle of the night that the entire situation may have been contrived by telepathic aliens to lower the Earthmen's guards. Before he can warn the others or reestablish a guard on the spaceship, he is proved right as he and the entire staff of the ship are killed by those whom they think are their family members.

Adaptations in Other Media[edit]

"Mars Is Heaven!" was adapted as a radio drama for numerous anthology series including Escape (June 2, 1950), Dimension X (July 7, 1950 & January 7, 1951), Think (1953), X Minus One (May 8, 1955) and Future Tense (July 1976). It was also adapted to the EC comic book Weird Science #18 (March–April 1953) by Al Feldstein and Wally Wood. It was also adapted as an episode of the television series Ray Bradbury Theater (July 20, 1990) starring Hal Linden and Paul Gross.

External links[edit]