The Expanse, 3.01 and 3.02

So I know I said no more reviews, But this is my favorite show of ever and besides is good blog writing practice. But before I dig into these episodes themselves please allow me a short digression. For a while I was a part of the Expanse Reddit community but unfortunately found the group to be a little ridiculous with labeling all talk regarding the novels to be vicious spoiler ridden contraband. I obviously do not want to spoil the story for anyone but I also think that pretending the books don’t exist is a little silly. If you love this show but haven’t read the books yet what are you waiting for? Books are important right? And these books in particular are amazing. They also compliment the show far more than they distract from it. I think that if you love science and you love this show you’ll probably clearly like reading. Some people claim they don’t have the time to read but with innovations like Kindle and Audible this too seems more and more like a silly excuse. Sorry if that sounds like a literacy lecture, most likely it’s not directed at you considering you’re taking the time to read my Blog. Moral of this mini rant, Lighten up /r/TheExpanse.

To be clear with everyone about how I will handle reviews like this in the future. I will not spoil the episode I am currently talking about nor will I relate any of it to the book. Though I will consider the previous episodes and anything from the episode in question that is not plot specific to be fair game. I believe this is the unspoken rule for most blogs but for mine I want to make it clear.

Okay so from where we left off last season. If you are new to this show know that it is a spaceship show, and one of the best ones ever. It is remarkably close to being a ‘hard’ science fiction. meaning most of the tech and situations in the show are literally possible. It takes place in our own solar system only a couple centuries from now. Mars has been colonized and has since won their independance, But the terraforming project will still take many years to complete. Earth is overpopulated and seawalls are needed around the major cities due to rampant climate change. These facts leave the two major players too distracted to care about the needs of everyone else. These people called ‘Belters’ who populate the outer reaches of the solar system make up the third player in the series, their lives are a constant struggle to find enough air and water to survive. But in spite of such adversity or maybe because of it the Belters have created their own complex culture & society.

That was most of the first season. Now add a highly contagious and possibly intelligent alien biomass mixed with a military-industrial corporate plot to create human alien hybrids and you have a very simplified version of the events until this season. For the detailed version check out this article

So episodes 1&2.. Naomi is quickly becoming the least favorite character of both me and the other characters on the show. The big reveal of the last season was her massive betrayal of the crews trust. Last season she hid and/or stole the protomolecule from the other crew member. This made here come off as selfish last season but now she just seems to be a dangerous liability. Her character is going to have to be redeemed somehow during this season, It better be good because despite saving all those people on the Ganymede docks she has basically committed a mutinous act against her crew and proved that she can never be trusted.

UN Undersecretary Errinwright has now turned into Grima Wormtongue from the second Lord of the Rings novel/movie, delivering his war-mongering whispers now directly into the ear of the Secretary General. To me this feels like a continuity error because, correct me if I’m wrong but wasn’t Errinwright just days away from going on trial for supporting Protogen? It seems to me that thread was just dropped on the floor.

We are also beginning to see how badass Bobby Draper really is. I remember the novel referring to Bobby as a “comic book illustration of herself, with muscles on her muscles” this is a description probably better suited for literature than television but 5’11” Frankie Adams does a great job selling it. Expect more mech suit acrobatics and beat downs. Also expect a new character, a SWEET new ship design and some mind blowing VFX at the end of episode 2.

The last thing I want to write about is a scene in episode 2 where a panel comes loose from the Roci’s machine shop wall while the ship is under heavy maneuvers. This is the typical example of why I love this series so much. If you think back to Star Trek where people walk around the bridge in the middle of a battle without so much as a seat belt anywhere in sight. This of course is explained away by the impossible tech of “Inertial Dampeners”. But in reality the second the Enterprise went to warp everyone on the bridge would be a red stain on the back wall. In the Expanse when your ship goes into battle you spend it in an EVA suit, strapped into your crash couch with a 5 point harness. The EVA suit in necessary because the ship needs to be decompressed of any atmo present, otherwise the first bullet that hit it would pop it like a balloon. Starting to see what i mean about hard science? So in this particular instance Prax and Amos are strapped down into their crash couches in the machine shop when the panel comes loose. The ship then spins laterally and all those tools fly free like the stirrer ball in a spray paint can, colliding with anything and everything in the room. I won’t narrate the whole scene for you but cheers to SyFi channel for embracing hard science fiction. Something that I believe it was seriously lacking!

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