The NASA Mars Probe is an orbital unmanned camera satellite sent by NASA from Cape Kennedy to land on the planet Mars to capture surface photos of the planet. Unfortunately, the rocket taking it into orbit malfunctioned, and the probe instead near the lagoon of the Island that received the Castaways of the S.S. Minnow. Unfortunately, on impact, the lens came loose and was lost in the proximity of the crash site. Despite the crash, the probe did manage to catch brief images of the island to convince the scientists that Mars had an Earth-like atmosphere in addition to a brief glimpse of a hut. However, shortly after discovering it, the Skipper and the Professor partially dismantled it to study it. Radio reports, however, began reporting on the scenery caught on the probe, and the Professor felt the probe was a very good chance to get them rescued. Gilligan later turned out to be in possession of the missing lens which is broken and restored before the probe started working again. by time the probe is activated, the Castaways have (possibly) unavoidably been covered in feathers which the NASA scientists believe are a Martian life-form. However, the probe is shattered once more as Gilligan trips over its leg trying to retrieve the Castaways signs. It is unrevealed as to what happened to the remnants of the probe afterward.
- The names of the chief scientists on the Mars Probe are Professor George Bancroft and Professor John Corwell.
- Despite crashing to Earth, the Mars 1965 Probe on the island was possibly more successful than her real life counterparts. Most of them were launched by the Soviet Union Space Program, including the Mars 1960A craft launched on October 10 1960 and the Mars 1960B launched October 14 1960, both of which failed to reach Earth orbit. The Mars 1962A launched by the Soviet Union on October 24, 1962 exploded en route to Earth orbit. The Mars 1962B launched November 11, 1962 broke up during transfer to Mars trajectory, and the Mars 1 launched June 19, 1963 lost contact while en route approximately 193,000 kilometers of Mars. Meanwhile, the United States Mariner 3 launched by NASA November 5 1964 had a protective shield that failed to eject, preventing the craft from attaining correct trajectory.
- The sections of the ruined probe are curiously missing when the Professor is searching for metal to melt into an anchor in Mine Hero.