From the beginning, “Mars” (9 p.m. Eastern Mondays on National Geographic) has aimed to show what humanity’s colonization of the Red Planet will really be like. Season 1, which aired back in 2016, chronicles the travel and settlement in the 2030s. Now Season 2 brings us into the 2040s, after the initial challenges have been conquered.
“Mars” (9 p.m. Mondays, National Geographic Channel), the year’s most hyped science show, fails to capture the wonder of 2014’s “Cosmos,” which brought science to mainstream audiences with remarkable entertainment value. This is partly because “Cosmos” allowed host Neil deGrasse Tyson and his team to choose fascinating topics from throughout history, whereas “Mars” focuses on one thing: The first manned mission to Mars, which – if one is to buy the premise – will happen within the next two decades.