It’s exhausting to imagine, however The Expanse isn’t any extra.
With the collection finale “Babylon’s Ashes,” the epic house drama takes its ultimate bow, cementing the present as certainly one of tv’s biggest science fiction tales. Very similar to the trials and tribulations Holden (Steven Strait), Naomi (Dominique Tipper) and Amos (Wes Chatham) endured, The Expanse didn’t have a simple path to achieve its supposed conclusion. It was initially canceled by Syfy in 2018 after simply three seasons, however Amazon Studios fortunately swept in and plucked it from the jaws of loss of life. In hindsight, it’s not exhausting to see why the studio rescued the collection, neither is it exhausting to find out why followers flew banners over Amazon’s headquarters imploring the corporate to “Save the Expanse.”
The high-stakes drama, based mostly on the books of the identical identify by James S.A. Corey (pen identify for duo Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham), all the time had one thing to say and delivered its message effectively. Within the conflicts among the many Earthers, Belters and Martians, we’d see heightened variations of our personal ideological and political divides; which, within the years because the present first started airing, solely turned increasingly more obvious. The universe was fictional, however the squabbles and politics, the inequalities, the “us vs. them” mentalities, even within the face of a looming hazard that impacts everybody, felt actual. Putting a finger on the heartbeat of the present political and social local weather is one thing few reveals do effectively, however The Expanse, like Battlestar Galactica earlier than it, managed to just do that.
And like Galactica earlier than it, The Expanse featured a forged of characters who’re tough to let go of as a result of, at their core, they really feel actual. The Roci crew couldn’t have been extra totally different after they started, however their bond grew robust sufficient to attract us again each week and to remind us that generally, a household will be 4 strangers on a ship deemed a “authentic salvage.”
A complete article could possibly be devoted to the distinctiveness and depth of Chatham’s Amos, who, regardless of missing an ethical compass and counting on his household to level him towards the correct factor, by no means descended into villainy. (He’s that man.) And out of doors the Roci, the primary gamers had been equally charming. Avasarala (Shohreh Agdashloo)’s colourful language, beautiful outfits, and political shrewdness ought to reside perpetually in sci-fi historical past, as ought to Drummer’s (Cara Gee) smoky eye make-up and fiery speech on Medina Station. And, after all, Miller (Thomas Jane), the tortured detective after which the mysterious Inspector, is completely unforgettable in his trademark hat and lengthy trench coat.
None of those characters had been excellent folks, however of their imperfections, they mirrored points of what it means to be human. To search out companionship and located household, to lose family members and grieve, to have one’s worldviews challenged and, generally, confirmed completely improper, to hit all-time low and slowly climb again up. Every of them had their very own exquisitely crafted arcs, and after embarking on a six-season journey, saying goodbye to them on the finish of the present’s ultimate season appears like saying goodbye to outdated associates.
The Expanse additionally stood alone when it got here to its razor-sharp precision relating to scientific accuracy. Few sci-fi packages have bothered to nail the specifics of a “flip and burn,” or to dictate that its characters want “juice” to outlive Excessive-G house journey. The Expanse was meticulous relating to the mechanics of its world, and it made hovering in spaceships and colonizing Mars, each ideas that might come off feeling campy or outlandish, grounded, lifelike, and plausible.
There may be, after all, the slight risk that goodbyes could not have to be stated in spite of everything. There may be nonetheless supply materials aplenty to be mined from the books — many of the ultimate season solely adapts e-book six, out of 9. If the present pattern of revivals and years-later continuations continues, there’s potential we’d see the Rocinante as soon as extra. However for now, we’re content material, if a bit saddened, to depart this universe and its characters realizing their tales got here to a meticulously crafted finish.
And we’ll all the time watch our doorways and corners.
The Expanse, all episodes now streaming, Prime Video