Welcome to "Mezzanine Seating," a new concept just patented by commercial aircraft manufacturer Airbus, perhaps as a threat to the sky-going population that we complain too much about planes and it could always be worse. Amazingly, this may be worse than when airline seat manufacturers menaced us with honey-combed face-to-face seating.
Although some are saying that the geometry of this plan would actually improve legroom while increasing the carrying capacity of the plane, in our guts we look at this and we know it is bad. Call us old-fashioned, but putting a line of butts in front of a line of faces is just not the start to a pleasant journey.
There are several possible variations, of course, because nothing teaches you that humanity comes in 2-3 distinct and separated flavors better than air travel. The business class stacks unfurl all the way, allowing business travelers to pretend they are back at business camp, whispering to each other after the flight attendant turns out the lights.
In the hot, sweaty hive that is coach, drones crawl over each other to enter their honeycomb chamber. The hive designs have a hanging foot gap that begs passengers on the upper level to trip and fall into the aisle, which can unfold into a deck-chair shape for sleeping fliers to fall from.
The diagram shows no more than two next to each other but one should know better than to trust airlines to leave space between seats. Chairs do not recline fully in coach.
Oh well, at least they didn't also patent a version where you have to face other passengers, right?
Fortunately, we can also trust Airbus to probably not do this. It files about 600 patents a year to "protect its intellectual property" aka "stop anyone else from inventing plane-related stuff." So, as long as we don't complain too much about the gigantic A380 or any of Airbus's other planes, we can probably rest assured that Mezzanine Seating remains, like nuclear weapons, merely a threat.