The Expanse Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

The final episode of the latest sixth season of Amazon Video’s sci-fi series The Expanse aired Friday. Events unfold immediately after the finale of the fifth – Marco Inaros (Keon Alexander) and his son Philip (Jasai Chase-Owens), at the head of the Outer Planets Alliance, attack the Earth with asteroids, which leads to the death of millions of people. The Martian fleet and the UNPO team up to fight Inaros’ ships. Along with them, Camila Drummer (Kara G) is on the hunt for the rebel leader.

«The Expanse» / ​​The Expanse

Genre fantasy, drama
Directed by Robert Lieberman, Terry McDonough
Cast: Thomas Jane, Stephen Strait, Cas Anwar, Dominic Tipper, Wes Chatham, Florence Faivre, Sean Doyle, Shohreh Aghdashloo
Amazon Video Channel
Year of release 2015
Series 6
IMDb website

The sixth season was made much shorter than the previous ones – only six episodes instead of at least ten before, which negatively affected the course of the story and made it too hasty. Perhaps it’s because of the limited budget and high costs for each series. It was because of this that the SyFy channel abandoned the series at the time.

And so the limited timekeeping from the main story was taken away by unrelated inserts about events on one of the planets beyond the Ring called Laconia. Perhaps in this way the creators tried to expand the universe of “Space” and made a reserve for future projects. At the same time, they took away precious minutes from the main story and its characters, which is critical in terms of the outbreak of the war for the solar system and control over the portal to other worlds.

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The reduction in the number of episodes also affected some of the main characters. Before that, there was no black and white in The Space, and all people and parties to the conflict were shown from different positions and in such a way that their opinion could be understood and accepted. But now Marco Inaros and Chrisien Avasarala (Shohre Aghdashloo) have become pure Evil and Good respectively.

The leader of the Alliance of the Outer Planets was immediately shown as a narcissistic and charismatic person, and his revolutionary moods were justified by the most difficult living conditions of the inhabitants of asteroids – asters. Marco has a confusing relationship with his son Philip and an even weirder one with Naomi’s ex-wife Nagata. But he was never an absolute Evil, without remorse throwing the lives of his subordinates. But that’s how his character was presented in the last season.

At the same time, Chrisjen Avasarala appears as Good and even talks about her transformation and experience herself. Once she tortured the asters with gravity on Earth, but now she understands them, repents and is ready to make compromises for the sake of the future of all mankind.

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The limited episodes did something good for The Expanse, too. In addition to the problems described above and the crumpled narrative, which clearly would not have been enough even for 13 episodes of the second and third seasons, the series picked up the pace of a full-fledged action game. The number of space battles has become obscenely prohibitive. Almost in every episode there are spectacular scenes of battles, explosions, chases and pursuits. Not without space landing, powered suits and battles in zero gravity.

At the same time, the scriptwriters were able to identify the emotional state of each of the main characters, determine their attitude to what is happening and thoughts about the future. From the lips of the heroes often catch phrases sound, and all their behavior simply shines through with hope for a good outcome. All this is neatly seasoned with black humor and jokes from Amos Barton (Wes Chatham) and Martian Bobby Draper (Frankie Adams).

The place of the deceased Alex Kamal (Kes Anwar) in the Rocinante team was successfully, and most importantly, completely organic, taken by Clarissa Mao (Nadine Nicole). The new hero was also in the books, but due to the “unscheduled” death of Alex Kamal at the end of the fifth season (the actor was fired after a series of allegations of sexual harassment, which were never proven), the emphasis on Mao’s daughter was made more.

In addition, Alex himself was not forgotten either – during the season on Rocinante they listen to his music, remember him and often tell stories with the participation of a Martian.

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But in the original books by James Corey (the duo of writers Daniel Abraham and Ty Frank), the former Martian paratrooper Bobbi Draper was not entrusted with the pilot position of the Rocinante, and in the series it was she who began to control the ship.

The sixth season ended the main story of The Expanse and ended much better than expected. The series had a kind of “happy ending”, but with a number of unexpected twists. At the same time, there was a lot left unsaid in the plot, including the intriguing inserts from the planets beyond the Ring mentioned above.

We hope that the huge universe of “Space” does not leave for good, but only takes a break, especially since the creators themselves spoke about it. And there is something to work on there – in 2021, the last book of the series called “The Fall of the Leviathan” was published, where the heroes who have aged 30 years are waiting for new tests.

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Pros: a lot of action and spectacular space battles; the limited number of episodes did not allow the plot to sag; logical and relatively adequate ending of the general story with a reserve for the future Cons: too few episodes in the season, which affected the simplification of some heroes, the crumpled storyline and the corporate slowness of the narrative of “Space”; strange but intriguing inserts at the beginning of each episode, which took time from the main story Conclusion:

A worthy ending to great science fiction on the small screen. Despite the limitation on episodes, the scriptwriters managed to create an addictive ending to the epic story, diluting it well with action, already branded politics, unhurried communication of the main characters, and even humor. “Space” is without a doubt the best science fiction series about space in the last few decades.

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