What is the story about?
On January 28, 1986, USA launched the Space Shuttle Challenger into space. Thousands of people across America watched it in great anticipation. It was supposed to be the first time a common person ( a school teacher) would make it to space along with the astronauts. Everyone watched this with bated break, but tragedy struck within 73 seconds. The shuttle broke apart, killing all seven passengers on board, including five NASA astronauts, an engineer, and the school teacher. It devastated their families and people who were watching them on television. The docu-series on Netflix takes a closer look at the tragedy, interviewed people close to the ones involved the space mission and also the dwells deeper in the backstories of them.
The documentary is not just informative, but it also humanizes the ones who went into space. For years we all have seen movies where the astraunauts are made to look like androids and robots and with superhuman powers who venture into space. Challenger: The Final Flight shows us the back stories and insightful look of the crew, which included Judith Resnick, the second woman and first Jewish woman in space; Ellison Onizuka, the first Asian-American in space; Ronald McNair, the second African-American in space; Michael J. Smith and Gregory Jarvis and Commander Scobee, and Christa McAuliffe.
There are several heartbreaking moments in the docu-series reminding us these brave and bold explorers were also real people just like us. June Scobee Rodgers says when she received confirmation about the tragedy, she went into the closet and wrapped her arms around her husband’s clothes. She looked at his uniform and the card he gave her on Valentine's Day. There are several such heartbreaking accounts from the families, colleagues and loved ones of the crew.
Did I enjoy it?
It was quite devastating and heartbreaking to listen to the accounts of the families of the crew, who lost their lives in the space mission. It was also very insightful to know about these people from a closer perspective. It will give you an idea about how the people they left behind and how they are still picking up the pieces and coming to terms with the loss. If anything this docu-series shows a lot of people dealing with pain and loss of a loved one.
Do I recommend it?
Yes, this is a must-watch docu-series. It is informative and at the same time a very humanizing account of people who work in space programs.