What William Shatner Has To Say About His Trip To Space

In all the time he played Captain James T. Kirk of the USS Enterprise, actor William Shatner probably never thought for a moment that he would really make it to the edge of space, yet here we are. As one of four passengers aboard Blue Origin's second manned flight, Shatner finally went where no man his age had ever gone before, by being the oldest person — at 90 years old — to fly to the edge of our atmosphere and peer into what lies beyond. 

Shatner emerged from the capsule, obviously overwhelmed by his experience, and he refused to take part in a ritual champaign shower to mark his launch and return to earth. But it wasn't long before he wound down and began waxing poetic over his experience in a lengthy soliloquy describing all he saw. "You look down, there's the blue down there and the black up there ... there is Mother Earth and comfort, and there is, is there death? I don't know, but is that death? Is that the way death is? ... It was so moving; this experience, it was something unbelievable," he said (via CNN). 

He also told Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos: "I hope I never recover from this. I hope that I can maintain what I feel now — I don't want to lose it. It's so much larger than me and life" (via Mediaite).

The trip didn't go exactly as planned

The iconic actor didn't make any attempts to hide his apprehension over his record-making journey. One week before his trip, Shatner appeared at New York Comic Con, where he cracked jokes about his upcoming trip. "I don't want to be known as the oldest guy in space. I'm bloody Captain Kirk!" he boomed, before coming out and admitting: "I'm Captain Kirk and I'm terrified" (via Associated Press). In a separate interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Shatner also admitted that he was apprehensive and that "There's an element of chance here" (via NY Post).

It probably didn't help Shatner's trip to the fringes of the final frontier didn't exactly go as planned. Jeff Bezos' New Shepard space rocket was meant to leave on Tuesday, but that trip was postponed to Wednesday, thanks to unpredictable weather, which had been predicted for the original flight date (via Reuters). Shatner nerves would have been further frayed because the launch was delayed several times before it eventually took place (via CNN).

And while Captain Kirk believes that what he saw during his brief moment in space was critical, and that  "Everybody in the world needs to see this" (via Twitter), he remains one of the lucky few who are able to make that journey. Reuters says that while Blue Origin has sold almost $100 million worth of tickets to paying customers, the actor made the journey on Bezos' dime (via Wall Street Journal).