The first episode introduces viewers to Mark R. Naird (Carell), a decorated Air Force pilot who is tasked with leading the U.S. Armed Forces’ newest branch: Space Force. This includes uprooting his wife, Maggie (Lisa Kudrow), and his daughter, Erin (Diana Silvers), to Colorado, where he takes over the super-secretive base.
After a one-year time jump, Mark is seen visiting the Space Force headquarters, which is—supposedly—kept hidden from locals. (What base?) At one point, he’s driving in the car and approaches a mountain disguised as a secret door, which leads to a road and, well, you get the idea. Mark even detains a cashier at the gas station, who mentions the upcoming Space Force launch that no one’s supposed to know about. Whoops!
When Mark returns to the base, he immediately goes into preparation mode for the big launch later that day. The problem? Everyone—and I mean everyone—is advising against it, since it’s not quite ready for orbit.
Despite their recommendations, Mark doesn’t postpone the launch, which proves to be successful. Boots on the moon! That all changes later that night when Mark is watching it through a telescope and spots a large spacecraft disassembling the satellite mid-orbit.
Oh, Mark also visits his wife Maggie in jail, which is a complete shock to me. I have no idea why or how she ended up there, since the episode featured a time jump and didn’t explain her situation. But I wouldn’t be surprised if she somehow betrayed the Space Force during her first year on the base, resulting in a real-life Orange Is the New Black experience.