William Shatner said that he was "overwhelmed" by the planet's value, in a recent interview.
The comedian and actor, who is best known for his role as Captain James T. Kirk in "Star Trek: The Original Series" (1966-1969), was also the starring crew member of Blue Origin's NS-18 suborbital flight, which launched and landed Wednesday, October 13.
Shatner, in an interview on NBC's "Today", said that he was overwhelmed by the view from the New Shepard spacecraft's window. He also described what he saw as a contrast between Earth's "life" and space's "death". These comments echo those he made shortly after landing.
He said, "We must take care of this planet, but it is so fragile." "There is a tiny, blue, 50-mile-wide, and we pollute that. It's our way of life."
Video: William Shatner looks out from space at Earth in awe
Photo: Space launch by William Shatner with Blue Origin
Actor turned astronaut, the 90-year old actor said that he had a complete "physical experience" during the 11-minute flight. He felt everything, from floating in zero G to the pressure and pressure of 5 Gs or the gravity of Earth pressing down on him during landing.
"As I'm coming to a halt, I think, 'You know what?' He said, "I'm 90 years old." He said that the training helped him to be careful in weightlessness. You have to grab something. Don't press too hard, use your fingertips. The ceiling will bounce off your fingertips.
After landing on Earth, the Blue Origin NS-18 space tourist flight crew poses with their New Shepard capsule. From left: Audrey Powers (left), William Shatner (right), Chris Boshuizen (right), and Glen de Vries. Blue Origin image credit
He said that microgravity was "indescribable" because he didn't feel any pressure in his stomach. "Suddenly your body is expanding. You're also floating. He described how he felt during three minutes of zero gravity and said, "I don’t want to do somersaults." I don't want skittles. I want to see out the window." (Indeed footage from the spacecraft showed Shatner fixed to the window.
Shatner admitted that it was difficult to return to Earth after 50 miles of space travel.
He recalled his thoughts at the time and said, "You know the parachutes must deploy. And will they?" Bang. They deployed! They deployed! They have boosters at the bottom so you don’t hit it [the ground] hard. But if they don’t go off, then something awful will happen."
Shatner's new spoken-word album "Bill" was released last month. The song is called "So Far From The Moon" and features Brad Paisley as Shatner. It also includes a song that reflects on 1969's Apollo 11 mission.
The actor recalls looking up at the sky and seeing astronauts walking on the moon. He also recalled being so far away from the moon while the landing was taking place during Thursday's interview. He added that, 55 years later, he was "a little closer to it than you guys." It strikes me as ironic.