THE EXPANSE (Amazon Prime) is one of my favorite shows and probably my favorite sci-fi show ever. Everything from the rich world-building to the three-dimensional characters to the crisp dialogue to the sense of realism to the incredible action, it’s just amazing. In particular, I love how the plot rarely takes the easy way out, how the characters struggle with physical and ethical dilemmas, and how every action has far-reaching consequences. In short, it may be a fantasy world, but this is a grownup story that treats its viewers like grownups while providing a sense of childlike wonder.
Season 4 had me a little worried. The first three seasons were incredible, and then the show ended up moving to Amazon. With its limited scale, the fourth season was solid but wasn’t the strongest of the lot. Then Season 5 arrived to deliver multiple tight plot lines converging on an incredible finale.
In this season, the crew have scattered on more personal missions. Amos wants to go to Earth to pay last respects to somebody important in his old life. Naomi wants to find her son. Alex goes to Mars to try to patch things up with his family. Holden, meanwhile, stays behind to hold the fort. While all this develops, Marco Inaros, Naomi’s ex who is now the leader of a navy intent on fighting the inner planets and establishing the Belt as an empire, puts his grand plan into motion. In the ensuing chaos, the crew finds itself facing their hardest fight to survive yet.
I won’t say more, see for yourself. Suffice to say I love this show, and Season 5 was as strong as if not better than the preceding seasons, which shows the power of anchoring a TV show to great books as well as what can happen when the owners of a beloved show respect that love by not cutting corners and phoning it in. Highly recommended.