The Expanse

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SlyReaper
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The Expanse

Postby SlyReaper » Sun Feb 05, 2017 4:41 pm UTC

I just discovered this little gem on netflix last week, and found myself marathoning the entire first season in two days. For a SyFy show, I was pleasantly surprised. The world is believable, the characters are flawed enough to make me care what happens to them, and the science nerd in me goes SQUEE at some of the attention to detail. Like when one guy pours out a bottle of water and the stream goes sideways a bit because he's in a rotating habitat. The spaceship engines seem implausibly efficient, but are used in a hard sci-fi kind of way: burn forwards to the halfway point, flip over, burn backwards until you arrive. I believe the second season starts later this week?

Question about a plot hole (season 1 spoilers):
Spoiler:
The main plot revolves around the destruction of the Canterbury when it answers a distress call that turns out to be a trap. The captain suspects it's pirate bait, so decides to ignore it, but Holden logs the call with HQ, which forces them to respond. Later, the XO of the Mars ship that picks up the survivors notes that no freighter captain worth his salt would have answered that distress call.

But in one of the last episodes, we overhear a villain conversation in a flashback that they know the Cant is in the area and will be picking up the signal shortly. Their whole plan seems to rely on the Cant responding to the distress signal. But if it wasn't for Jon Snow Holden having an attack of conscience, it wouldn't have. How could they have known that would happen?


Remember the Cant! :mrgreen:
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Re: The Expanse

Postby AngrySquirrel » Mon Feb 06, 2017 10:45 pm UTC

Just watched the first episode of this. It seems really solid as a sci-fi show, and plotwise the first episode is a hard-hitter, very satisfying.

It's a little bit slow for my personal tastes though, but I'll definitely pick it up again next time I get time to binge on something.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby raudorn » Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:47 pm UTC

Yeah, the show is better than I first expected, mostly because I hadn't heard anything about it and only clicked on the netflix thumbnail out of curiosity. I don't know what their SFX budget is, but they're doing good work with whatever they got.

Spoiler for entire season:
Spoiler:
However I wish they'd tell us more about what the deal with Earth and Mars is. I mean, it's often said "Show, don't tell", but I certainly wouldn't mind a bit more telling. Why are they so hostile (as compared to regular "gimme freedom, mom" hostility)? How is Mars more advanced in weapon technology when Mars doesn't have anything Earth + Luna doesn't.

The crystal stuff has the potential to become either a great plot point or ruin the show. May just be me, but SciFi tends to be better when it's stay mostly hard. Some out-of-control alien calcification infection, sure. But please no spirit/ghost stuff.

About the Canterbury plot hole. Hmmm, I guess the pupper master behind it either had additional forces to ensure that outcome or it was a case of "all paths lead to rome" and if the Canterbury had ignored the call, the same outcome would've been accomplished with some other ship.

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Re: The Expanse

Postby pseudoidiot » Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:08 pm UTC

FYI in case the show description didn't make it obvious, it's based on a really good series of books and they've done a pretty great job of adapting it to TV.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby SlyReaper » Tue Feb 07, 2017 8:17 pm UTC

I've started on the first book, and I notice the plot hole I mentioned in the OP doesn't really exist in the book.
Spoiler:
The Canterbury receives the distress call, and while everyone regards it as a massive pain in the arse, it doesn't seem like anyone is seriously considering not responding. I guess they adapted it in the TV show to give Holden something to feel guilty about? But now I'm worried that the TV show writers just didn't think it through, and it won't be resolved.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby pseudoidiot » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:57 am UTC

As far as the TV show plot hole:
Spoiler:
Possibly a writing misstep. But also, it could have easily been part of the bad guys' plans. Not all plans are perfect or fool proof. Chances are they were relying on the distress signal not being ignored. Since that seems to be the convention or maybe even law in space. And if had been ignored another vessel would eventually have come along.

Also, could easily be that it wasn't specifically about the Cant, but that the Cant was the first vessel to come within range. I imagine the end-result would have been the same no matter what ship came along and got blown up.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby PAstrychef » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:00 pm UTC

Holden feeling guilty keeps many things going throughout the series-I just know the books, not the TV show.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby Giant Speck » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:51 am UTC

The second season is leaps and bounds better than the first. I liked Chrisjen Avasarala in the first season, but I like her even more this season.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby plytho » Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:29 pm UTC

I watched the first season right before the second and to me it feels more like gradual improvement overall. I think the first season just didn't have a lot for Chrisjen Avasarala to do. I'm really happy she plays a bigger part now.

Spoiler:
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Re: The Expanse

Postby SlyReaper » Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:11 am UTC

Second season still isn't available on this side of the pond, so I've had to make do with the books. Avasarala wasn't even in the first book (which ends when Eros flies into Venus), so it's not surprising she didn't have much to do in the first season except establish herself as a character. She's quite awesome in the second book though.

Is Bobbie in the second season? It's kinda fun reading about how she intimidates everyone around her without even meaning to.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby plytho » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:02 am UTC

SlyReaper wrote:
Is Bobbie in the second season? It's kinda fun reading about how she intimidates everyone around her without even meaning to.


She is. She's not among my favorite characters in the show (I haven't read the books). I'm not sure if it's the writing or the performance, but I feel like her actions aren't always sufficiently motivated.
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Re: The Expanse

Postby EdgarJPublius » Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:58 am UTC

Bobbie and Avasarala are probably my two favorite characters from the books.

I was rather disappointed with the portrayal of Chrisjen in the first season, but in the second she's pretty much perfect. Right now I have about the same attitude towards Sgt. Draper on the show as I did for Chrisjen last season. She's just not matching up to her book counterpart right now. It feels to me like Bobbie on the show doesn't have the kind of physicality and presence I expect of Bobbie from the books, but Frankie Adams is a 6ft tall Samoan boxer, so I have a hard time believing physical presence being the actual missing factor.

Unless they save it for the next season premiere, the next episode looks like it's gonna have my favorite Bobbie Draper moment from the books (and actually probably my favorite moment in the whole series) and I really hope the show can pull it off.
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