The rise of commercial space travel is here, and for the vast majority who cannot afford its millions-plus price tag, streaming platforms are here to capture it. Starting this week, Netflix will air the first two installments of Countdown: Inspiration4 Mission to Space, its first docuseries to cover an event – SpaceX’s launch of its first all-civilian crew on a three-day trip circling Earth – in “near real time”. Subsequent episodes will document the four astronauts’ preparation for the 15 September launch from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Episodes three and four will air just two days prior; a feature-length finale film of the mission itself will air in late September.
The series, directed by veteran sports documentarian Jason Hehir, best known for The Last Dance, promises to take