The Expanse: New Terra   Books Included 
December 13, 2019 10:39 AM - Season 4, Episode 1 - Subscribe

The Expanse Season 4 is finally here on Amazon Prime. The first three seasons were on SYFY, but despite it being one of if not the best science fiction series around, it got canceled. Fortunately, Amazon picked it up and all 10 episodes are now available. This season is based on the fourth book in The Expanse series, Cibola Burn. I've put the story description for the season and first episode below the fold just in case some people are still not quite caught up with the events of Book/Season 3.

Season description: "With the Ring Gates now open to thousands of new planets, a blood-soaked gold rush begins, igniting new conflicts between Earth, Mars, and the Belt. Meanwhile, on one unexplored planet, the Rocinante crew gets caught in a violent clash between an Earth mining corporation and desperate Belter settlers as deadly, new threats from the protomolecule emerge."

Episode description: "The crew of the Roci investigates a strange protomolecule ruin on an alien planet. Bobbie copes with civilian life on Mars. Drummer and Ashford battle with piracy in the Belt."

Amazon Prime URL: The Expanse

Cibola Burn on The Expanse Wiki.
posted by homunculus (11 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I’m glad to see Ashford is still around - show Ashford is absolutely one of my favorite characters. His delay before transmitting the totally valid transmission codes was priceless.

I was a little confused about the sudden hair growth on all the actors, but then I remembered that the show got canceled so presumably they went about doing normal life for a while.
posted by corb at 6:57 PM on December 13, 2019 [2 favorites]

Yeah, I swear Holden got downright _skinny_ between seasons, and I wasn't entirely sure if that was Mao's daughter talking to Amos, but I do like that t hey gave the world some time to react to the events in the ring, and not just picking things up the very next day. It also excuses a bit of character difference between seasons, right? Sure.

I'm still not entirely clear on Bobbie's living arrangements - moved in with her brother and his wife, I think?
posted by Kyol at 8:24 PM on December 13, 2019 [2 favorites]

About Bobbie's living arrangements, yes. Looks like they're going to include the Gods of Risk novella this season.
posted by The AhForgetIt Tendency at 7:28 AM on December 14, 2019 [2 favorites]

Re: the hair growth - there's an 8-month gap when the show started and then the trip to Ilus as well, which was long enough for Naomi to seriously start working to be on planetside though I don't know how long that is for the show.

And yeah, that's Clarissa/Mabel.

I always enjoyed Thomas Jane as Miller and it's interesting the verbal tics they've provided him as The Investigator.

And let me echo Amos re: Avasarala's look. I really liked the saree end being tucked into the top look, it was fab and somehow militaristic.
posted by cendawanita at 8:19 AM on December 14, 2019 [3 favorites]

My internet connection is behaving badly this weekend, so I'm putting off watching the rest of the season for the time being. If anyone else wants to keep posting for the rest of the season, by all means please do.
posted by homunculus at 10:24 AM on December 14, 2019

It seems like Avasarala’s allowed to swear in more book-approximate quantities now that the show’s on Amazon, which delights me. (Avasarala in general delights me.)

I’m curious if this season will have the Laconians going through the gate at the end.
posted by tautological at 1:38 PM on December 14, 2019 [2 favorites]

While I like the CG - perhaps I've been spoiled enough by TV and video games lately - it almost feels like it's approaching "2nd rate" for the profile of TV that this show is in a the USA is still a 1st world country, so places like Manila and Singapore get elevated to 0th World Countries, instead of the USA getting demoted.

The gates inside the ring, though, that's damned close to my mind's eye from the books.

Still love the Newtonian physics space fights.

It's been a while since I've read Cibola Burn, but I'll take all the Thomas Jane's Miller the show can justify.

Naomi/ Holden's family felt right, I hope they explore the her-not-being-able-to-return-to-Earth thing.

Steven Strait's ridiculously large arms toned down a little bit.
posted by porpoise at 6:15 PM on December 15, 2019

Hey, Amazon didn't screw it up! At least the show still looks great and expensive. Lots of new sets and CG effects for this season. Actors are still great, I've even warmed to Steven Strait (or else he's grown into the part).

Cibola Burn is my least favorite of the books, although in retrospect it's better than I remember. Mostly it felt like a one-and-done. "We've got 1300 planets, so every book we're going to have a new standalone adventure on that planet". The later books get more complex again and I prefer that.

It's smart to bring Bobbie in by telling the Gods of Risk story. That's one of the best of the novellas IMHO and gives us a great long look at life on Mars. Which becomes very useful for setting up the later books. I'm curious if they'll expand on the story, it's a pretty short novella.

Not sold yet on Lyndie Greenwood as Elvi Okoye. Burn Goldman immediately commands the role of Adolphus though, which is great. I can't look at him without thinking "Discount Store Willem Dafoe" but he sure sells the ruthless sheriff thing.
posted by Nelson at 7:54 AM on December 18, 2019

Burn Gorman is definitely under-rated. Been a fan of him since Torchwood.

I'd have cast him as Carcer in the The Watch tv adaptation.
posted by porpoise at 5:53 PM on December 18, 2019 [2 favorites]

Starlings are creepy to begin with so the alien mumuration at the end was nice and spine-tingling. Looking forward to watching more!
posted by exogenous at 1:18 PM on December 21, 2019 [1 favorite]

I loved Amos asking what Avasarala was wearing. Especially because it's Amos, so he could be strangely fascinated by her or he could be genuinely appreciative of her fashion choices. So hard to tell! One of those things I love about the character.
posted by rednikki at 3:55 PM on December 24, 2019 [4 favorites]

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