Real Asteroid Hurdles Toward Earth: Hollywood Says We’re Screwed

Deep Impact asteroid

Earlier today, I read a headline on an astrophysics site (hey, can’t a girl have diverse interests?) that NASA is soliciting students to help name a potentially dangerous asteroid that’s headed straight for Earth. Students just have to suggest a name that’s 16 characters or less and explain why it would be perfect. Awww, adorable. 

But what the writer glossed over was: there’s a potentially dangerous asteroid that’s headed straight for Earth

Sure, we’ve been through comet- and asteroid-panic before and impact wouldn’t be expected for another 170 years. So maybe that’s why no one is freaking out just yet. 

But where would Hollywood put our chances of survival? Based on the most recent asteroid movies, there’d be some pretty nasty collateral damage if not total annihilation. Here’s a breakdown: 

Asteroid (1997 TV movie)

Asteroid Name: Helios and Eros

Destroyed: Dallas, Texas. 

Outcome: Jet fighters try to destroy the asteroid but only break it into pieces. The planet is saved but not without destruction. 

Deep Impact (1998)Asteroid Name: Wolf and Biederman. Destroyed: Impact in Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.Outcome: Suicide mission saves Earth (or at least half of it). 

Armageddon (1998)

Asteroid Name: Nicknamed Dottie. 

Destroyed: Shanghai.

Outcome: Suicide mission saves Earth (and Ben Affleck). 

Melancholia (2011) 

Asteroid Name: Well, it’s not technically an asteroid but the planet that’s colliding with Earth is called Melancholia, hence the name of the movie. 

Destroyed: Everything. 

Outcome: Apocalypse cures Kirsten Dunst’s depression. 

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World (2012)

Asteroid Name: Mathilde.

Destroyed: Everything.

Outcome: Steve Carell finds love with Keira Knightley. Oh, and then the world ends. Because both of those things could happen in reality. 

[Photo credit: Paramount]


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