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'For All Mankind' sneak peek: Watch astronauts test-fire guns on the moon in 'Best-Laid Plans'

What can go wrong when somebody fires a gun on the moon? It looks like we'll find out in this week's episode of "For All Mankind" airing Friday (March 26) on Apple TV+.

An exclusive clip from the episode on YouTube shows various NASA astronauts on the moon doing target practice with brand-new space M16 rifles, painted white because the sun there is so intense that traditional black might melt through an astronaut's glove (as we learned in last week's episode "The Weight"). 

The first shot does not go to plan, which is distressing because in this alternate space history, the Americans are arming themselves amid a larger dispute about lunar rights between the United States and the Soviet Union. Not only does it miss the bull's-eye, but it completely misses the target.

Video: Take an astronaut-led tour of the 'For All Mankind' moon base

Several spacesuited astronauts mill around the target, wondering where the bullet went, when veteran astronaut Tracy Stevens (played by Sarah Jones) speaks up. 

"It could be in orbit," she suggests.

The puzzled astronauts look at her. 

"No one's ever shot a rifle here before, so for all we know, that bullet might be going around the moon to come right back around in a short while," she continues; of course, the moon has no substantial atmosphere to slow a bullet down, either. She then addresses the astronaut who fired the shot. "Vance, just to be safe, I wouldn't stand in that same spot if I were you."

To see what happens next to Vance, the bullet and the large astronaut crew at NASA's fictional Jamestown Base, you'll have to tune into the episode on the streaming platform Apple TV+, which requires a subscription of $4.99/month. Season 1 and the first half of Season 2 are now available.

We have a spoiler-free discussion of what to expect in Season 2, comparing it to real-life space shuttle history of the 1980s, courtesy of Space.com partner collectSPACE. More information (likely with spoilers) about the season is available on "For All Mankind: The Official Podcast," on Apple Podcasts. An augmented reality experience called "For All Mankind: Time Capsule" is also available in the App Store.

Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. 

Elizabeth Howell

Elizabeth Howell is a contributing writer for Space.com who is one of the few Canadian journalists to report regularly on space exploration. She is the author or co-author of several books on space exploration. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. from the University of North Dakota in Space Studies, and an M.Sc. from the same department. She also holds a bachelor of journalism degree from Carleton University in Canada, where she began her space-writing career in 2004. Besides writing, Elizabeth teaches communications at the university and community college level, and for government training schools. To see her latest projects, follow Elizabeth on Twitter at @howellspace.

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