The Expanse: Dulcinea (Pilot)
November 28, 2015 6:17 PM - Season 1, Episode 1 - Subscribe

The pilot for a new series on SyFy based on James SA Corey's series of books that begin with Leviathan Wakes. In the US, the show begins airing on 14 December but SyFy has put the pilot on youtube.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe (65 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
My first reaction is that someone must have raised their hand in a meeting at SyFy HQ and said "Hey, remember about a decade ago? When we gave a shit instead of throwing random Asylum movies at people? What if we gave a shit again?"

The casting was pretty good. I was skeptical about Steven Strait playing Holden because he's way too young, but he sold it pretty well. There was only a little whitewashing -- biscotti is rereading the books and noted that Holden's friend-with-benefits Ade should have been African, but they let Alex Kamal and Chrisjen Avasarala stay south Asian and Naomi stay trans-ethnic. Wes Chatham, playing Amos Burton, is also way too young and I'm not fully sold on him. Thomas Jane did well as Miller, at least for a relatively un-trying first episode.

The production values were waaaaaay better than they had to be. I was happy-ish that they put as much effort as they did into building sets and CGI for Canterbury given that it asplodes at the end of the episode. It seemed indicative of a small commitment to the show, anyway.

I thought the plot was well-executed but who knows how that's going to develop over the show.

Anyway, my view is that there's enough potential here to be kinda pissed if SyFy drops the ball. Happily, there are six reasonably-long books and several sub-book-length pieces of basic plot already out there so the odds that they'll write themselves into a corner like Moore and co did with Galactica should be pretty low.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:35 PM on November 28, 2015 [5 favorites]

Yea, whoopee a full on space opera!

Musk's legacy, Mars vs Earth.
posted by sammyo at 8:13 PM on November 28, 2015

I'm so excited about this show. I really like the books and Daniel Abraham is one of my favorite authors. And he and Ty Franck both live in New Mexico (where I'm from), too. Also, an old friend of mine who is a producer isn't herself doing this, but her husband is an executive producer of it, so that's pretty cool. I have all sorts of reasons to be invested in this, although I would be excited about the show, regardless.

I haven't re-read the books so I've actually forgotten how everything begins. Pretty much none of Holden's people look like how I pictured them, including him, but mostly I'm okay with them. But Amos really needs to be bigger and scarier than the guy playing him. I'm very happy with Naomi.

It suffers from the problem that all pilots do, which is especially acute with this source material -- they have to set up a lot of the pieces on the board and I worry that the audience will be confused or overwhelmed by this. But, overall, I think they did a pretty good job.

Yeah, the production values are very high. All around, really, there's a lot of quality in this pilot one doesn't expect from SyFy these days and I hope they maintain it. I agree with the fear that they're going to somehow disappoint. From when it was announced I worried that SyFY was going to screw this up. Wouldn't it be nice if this ended up as a quality show that gets a bigger audience? I guess we'll get some early indication from how people here react to the pilot.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 9:44 PM on November 28, 2015

I was really, really, really excited by this. They've pretty much nailed the run-down crustiness of the books, and casting quibbles aside (I thought Naomi was tall!) they seem to have got the multi-ethnic diaspora right, right down to Belter patois. I did find the dialogue was mixed a bit low - or everyone is mumbling. Mumblecore scifi? Still, the general production values were fantastic, with some real sensawunda moments: I cheered and clapped like an idiot during the sequence of Canterbury flipping end-on-end for hard burn, and I hope to Bog you all did too, because with the slow descent of Doctor Who into pointless fairytales and wibbly-wobbly moralising, I need some sensawunda....
posted by prismatic7 at 10:18 PM on November 28, 2015 [3 favorites]

I re-read Leviathan Wakes this year and the pilot sticks pretty close to it. The only major change is that Avasarala's early introduction.

I enjoyed the hell out of it. It's a great set of books. Hopefully SyFy can keep up the quality.
posted by eyeballkid at 10:30 PM on November 28, 2015

I really enjoyed it and can't wait to see the rest! and I agree, the production quality and vfx were great.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 3:30 AM on November 29, 2015

So what was happening in the beginning with the reactor: did they throw all the crew into the reactor?
posted by Pyry at 3:37 AM on November 29, 2015

Maximum spoiler-free content: worse than that, and it should become clear soon.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:12 AM on November 29, 2015 [4 favorites]

I want to watch this so much but I'm not watching it on freaking youtube.
posted by Justinian at 9:50 AM on November 29, 2015

I haven't read the books, so I had no preconceptions at all. I find myself feeling cautiously optimistic after the pilot. Cringed at the jaded fedora gumshoe a bit, though.

But what was the deal with the man-eating plasma globe in the beginning, was it an alien of sorts? Will the mankind unite in a fight against something unspeakable? Will the main cast skew as male as the first episode looked like? Maybe don't tell me yet.
posted by sively at 2:15 PM on November 29, 2015

Sorry to tell you, sively, the jaded (trilby) gumshoe bit never really.. goes away. But hopefully they maintain the appropriate level of derision displayed in the books.

And with regards to main cast - if they stick to the books, kinda. It's probably fair to say there's a majority-male cast, but the female characters are unashamedly stronger, smarter, more important, and more capable. And the books don't shy away from pointing out how mindnumbingly stupid some of the bloke's decisions are.
posted by coriolisdave at 2:46 PM on November 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

I was SO happy with the pilot! I LOVE the books, and I was a bit worried about the casting, but other than the one minor whitewash with Ade (for no apparent reason whatsoever), and not being sold on Amos yet (he is way too young and too small, but everyone else is working so well, I am reserving judgment until he's had a chance to do more), I love the casting. Alex is absolutely spot on and Avasalara and especially Naomi are perfect. I am sold on Holden now and Tom Jane has sold me on his version of Miller. The plotting and pacing and dialogue are really good, the effects are great, I like how they are managing to differentiate the Belters from the inner planets folks without really being able to make them look the way they are described in the books, they are respecting the story, Ceres looks just like I imagined it... I am so excited, please SyFy....please keep it up.

And yeah, you need to wait and see what really happened/is happening to the crew of the Scopuli...
posted by biscotti at 5:12 PM on November 29, 2015

Maximum spoiler-free content: worse than that, and it should become clear soon.
And yeah, you need to wait and see what really happened/is happening to the crew of the Scopuli...

Gotcha. I didn't know if what was shown was supposed to be exceptional and mysterious, or whether that was how reactors normally look and throwing people into reactors was a common occurrence in the setting. At the beginning I thought it was supposed to be something weird, but later in the episode I thought maybe the martians had simply disposed of the crew by incinerating them in a completely normal reactor.
posted by Pyry at 5:35 PM on November 29, 2015

Regarding Detective Fedora Gumshoe (aka Miller), I recall there was some mention made in the novels that he was only doing it to piss people off.


posted by prismatic7 at 1:54 AM on November 30, 2015 [3 favorites]

I just watched it last night and really really enjoyed it. I thought the casting was really well done with the exception of Amos who I definitely think I mentally cast as Adam Baldwin ala Jayne, but I'm willing to see where this goes.

Other than that, there were definitely some problems with the dialogue mixing. I couldn't hear what was being said a lot of the time, and the scenes on Ceres with the patois made it harder.

Still, I'm excited about the show and now I have to figure out how I'm going to watch it w/o cable!
posted by Inkoate at 6:50 AM on November 30, 2015

My problem with space shows is as soon as they put magboots on, they suddenly act like there's gravity. When Holden & crew get into the shuttle, their packs really look like they have weight, not just mass, and in the background of the videophone to the ship, people are strolling around like it's not a huge pain in the ass to walk in magboots.

That is to say, since that is the only nitpick I can find, it was fantastic.
posted by BungaDunga at 12:46 PM on November 30, 2015 [1 favorite]

The youtube link may not work for you if you're outside the US. No luck here in the frozen northern wastelands.
posted by congen at 5:09 PM on November 30, 2015

"My problem with space shows is as soon as they put magboots on, they suddenly act like there's gravity."

That always annoys me, too, but on the long list of stuff like that which annoys me, I am very forgiving of this particular one. They can postulate artificial gravity, but that comes with a whole other set of annoyances for me because it's a wholly transformative technology and the implications of it are always ignored. But, even so, I try to be okay with it because it's just so prohibitive to mimic microgravity. Not postulating artificial gravity, especially in the context of the technological development we see in this show, is a choice I respect because it means that the background assumptions about science and technology are more likely to make sense and be coherent. But then they have to deal with microgravity and that's just impractical to mimic except for brief scenes. Thus, mag boots and a suspension of disbelief about how everything moves in that environment.

What I generally don't forgive is either laziness or an incoherence that implicitly confuses the audience -- or, especially, both -- but when it's something like this where it's just not practical, then I force myself to be okay with the compromise. Gravity boots and stuff-that-jostles-like-it's-at-1g are an acceptable compromise.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 9:29 PM on November 30, 2015 [5 favorites]

Yeah, Miller is basically trolling people with his shtick. Which I love. U mad bro?
posted by Justinian at 12:49 PM on December 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

In the show as in the book, Miller wears a porkpie, not a trilby nor fedora.

Here's Miller's first meeting with Naomi, Amos, and Holden, though he only knows of Holden so far:

“He was following us,” the woman said to Holden. And then, to Miller, she said, “You were following us.”
“I was,” Miller said. He didn’t think he sounded rueful, but the big guy shook his head.
“It was the hat,” the big one said. “Stood out some.”
Miller swept off his porkpie and considered it. Of course the big one had been the one to make him. The other three were competent amateurs, and Miller knew that Holden had done some time in the UN Navy. But Miller gave it better than even money that the big one’s background check would be interesting reading.

posted by Sunburnt at 10:33 PM on December 1, 2015

Nope, I take it back, it's a trilby in the show. But it's definitely a porkpie in the book.
posted by Sunburnt at 10:40 PM on December 1, 2015

Yeah, my only real disappointment with the pilot was that it was missing the the book's consistent and (I guess) realistic conception of gravity on shipboard (only when under thrust), but I guess floating around or strapped into crash couches all the time doesn't make for good tv.

I thought the casting was really well done with the exception of Amos who I definitely think I mentally cast as Adam Baldwin ala Jayne

I definitely had the same mental picture of that character.
posted by ghharr at 2:11 PM on December 2, 2015

The casting of Amos was also my biggest gripe so far. But I'm willing to let it grow on me. Otherwise I love love loved the pilot episode and can't wait for more.

Really interested to see who they end up casting as Bobbie.
posted by snwod at 5:04 PM on December 2, 2015

I suppose Gwendoline Christie can't play all those sorts of roles.
posted by Justinian at 8:28 AM on December 3, 2015 [2 favorites]

I'm interested, I want to know what happens next... but I also kind of don't care? All of the actors were fine, but none of them really grabbed me, except some of the side characters like Octavia. I thought pork pie/fedora was kind of goofy and everyone else was bland. There's no Starbuck, for example.
posted by tofu_crouton at 5:16 AM on December 4, 2015

The magboots are a totally acceptable compromise, and honestly it bugged me a little more that we can't emulate low gravity conditions for the Ceres scenes. That would look very different, but I did appreciate the low-gravity bird.

I really hope I live to see a time when a studio can afford to put a sound stage in orbit and spin it to emulate any particular gravity conditions. That will be great. Until then, sure, magboots.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 1:42 PM on December 4, 2015 [2 favorites]

I sort of think that the conditions under which speculative space travel fiction in a visual medium built on video of actual humans doing stuff is entirely satisfying will mostly be the conditions under which I could get my space travel fix by going to space.

i.e., I will be super dead by then, even if the species itself is still operating above the level of stone tools far enough in the future for this to happen, but oh well.
posted by brennen at 1:51 PM on December 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

I will watch the hell out of the first season of this. After that, well, we'll see if the show can transcend the source material, as Game of Thrones has.

I really enjoyed reading Leviathan Wakes. Book two was fine, but kind of a letdown after the first one. And I'm surprised I even finished book three given how crap it is in my memory. Common wisdom among those who have read them all seems to be that the series then goes downhill from there.

But season one!

As for the pilot itself, I though it was really well done. I don't really have any casting quibbles except that I expected Miller to look quite a bit older. I do wish that they had started Miller's arc a little further along in order to give him something to actually do in the pilot other than take us on a guided tour of Ceres.

Oh, and the destruction of the Canterbury elicited more of an emotional reaction in the show than I remember it accomplishing in the book. They did a better job than they needed to casting and directing the actors who played the Canterbury crew, considering they were never going to get more than one episode.
posted by 256 at 10:07 AM on December 7, 2015 [2 favorites]

Book two was fine, but kind of a letdown after the first one.

I'm gonna tell Bobbie you said that.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:02 PM on December 7, 2015 [8 favorites]

I quite liked the first three books in this trilogy and am glad to see Thomas Jane in just about anything so I hope this shows up somewhere soon.
posted by turbid dahlia at 8:41 PM on December 8, 2015 [1 favorite]

Metafilter: Until then, sure, magboots.
posted by Naberius at 5:27 AM on December 9, 2015 [5 favorites]

Justinian:I want to watch this so much but I'm not watching it on freaking youtube.

Just so you know, many cable providers still use MPEG2 as their digital encoding scheme, vs VP9/H.264 on youtube. You can get similar quality with a lot less bandwidth on YouTube. Also cable is 1080i/720p at best, which is why the episode on youtube is also 720p. HD Digital Cable looks pretty crappy during heavy action, lots of pixelation/macroblocking.
posted by JauntyFedora at 5:00 PM on December 11, 2015

"Also cable is 1080i/720p at best, which is why the episode on youtube is also 720p. HD Digital Cable looks pretty crappy during heavy action, lots of pixelation/macroblocking."

This episode is now available on SyFy's website, too. I use a media server and for most of the shows I watch, I find a 1080p version -- these are usually from a network's website or iTunes or the like. In some cases, it's not an improvement over 720p, for various reasons. But, otherwise, in many cases, it looks so much better. But I suspect that many people, especially those watching on smaller screens, won't notice it. But I very much notice it -- I got a 50" TV a year ago and even still I sometimes will just be stunned by how great something looks. If folks aren't watching contemporary shows in 1080p on a big home screen, they don't know what they're missing. It's really quite something.

In this case, while the YouTube max resolution on this is 720p, there is a 1080p version available -- from the SyFY site, I think. The problem I had with this was the sound. Of course, that's because I'm not running a 5.1 sound system and rely either on a stereo+subwoofer soundbar, or on headphones. If the source has 5.1 audio, what I've found is that the mixdown to stereo in either the player or the soundbar sometimes isn't that great -- the center channel where most of the dialog is placed will be too low relative to the others. I also think that often the rear channels -- usually the music is heavier on those -- are also relatively high in the mixdown.

So, for my (perverse version of) "fun", I demultiplexed the file and worked on the 5.1 audio in Adobe Audition. I ended up compressing the center channel to make all the dialog consistently louder in the episode, and then mixed everything down to stereo and then remastered the dynamics on the result. Then remuxed it with the video. The result is a big improvement. But this is why most televised and Blu-Ray sources have both a 5.1 soundtrack and a stereo soundtrack -- you want the audio specifically mastered by a human being that's appropriate for the output.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 7:50 AM on December 12, 2015 [2 favorites]

Common wisdom among those who have read them all seems to be that the series then goes downhill from there.

This is 100% wrong. The latest book is the best in the series.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:09 AM on December 15, 2015 [3 favorites]

I really enjoyed this, but yeah the sound mix, especially at the beginning, was terrible. I ended up turning on the closed captioning which is something I usually only have to do for Doctor Who to compensate for poor audio.
posted by fimbulvetr at 7:54 AM on December 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

The latest book is the best in the series.

For calibration purposes, would you agree that the first three books progressively decrease in quality?
posted by 256 at 8:37 AM on December 15, 2015

I thought the first episode was really great. I am also a fan of the books. I have enjoyed all of them. I have enjoyed all of the books, but book 5 was my least favorite, mostly because of the major plot points. What I thought the TV show did right was convey a sense of the mood and weight of the world. We got a glimpse of the characters, but not a lot of meat. I am cautiously optimistic about the cast.
posted by bove at 2:00 PM on December 15, 2015

I haven't read the books and I had no idea what to expect, so I was very pleased with what I saw. I'm optimistic about this show, especially since people here obviously like the books which means SYFY has a lot to work with. Yay space opera!
posted by homunculus at 3:39 PM on December 15, 2015

I've only read the first book, but I was really surprised at how closely this opening episode hewed to the scenes, structure and dialogue of the novel. It was really pretty great.

Unfortunately it looks like this isn't going to appear on any on-demand service I can find in the UK for a while, so I may have to wait for it to show up on Amazon Prime or Netflix to watch the rest. Weirdly the Youtube video worked for me though. Anyone know if it's coming across the Atlantic at some point? Syfy's UK site is totally free of any useful information.

Folks may also enjoy the review/discussion panel that The Geek's Guide to The Galaxy podcast did on this show, some good discussion and they keep it pretty spoiler free.

I thought the casting was really well done with the exception of Amos who I definitely think I mentally cast as Adam Baldwin ala Jayne

I definitely had the same mental picture of that character.

Huh - mentally I always saw Amos as more like 'Catfish' De Vries from The Abyss, which is my mental model for any 'truckers under water in space' type movie or TV show I see, but I guess that actor's dead now and would have been 71 if he was still alive anyway.
posted by Happy Dave at 5:39 AM on December 16, 2015

Thank god this showed up on TV finally.

I thought the first episode was pretty good and that the first four episodes (which are available On Demand) varied from good to excellent. The cast may be uniformly a few years younger than I pictured but that's fairly common for TV (with the exception of Game of Thrones where everyone is older than the books) but not by enough to throw off my suspension of disbelief.

I love the Pur n Kleen jumpsuits. I guess we'll never get away from that bullshit.

This is the only post I see though so I'll leave my comments for the later episodes for, uh, later.
posted by Justinian at 12:59 AM on December 17, 2015

I too loved it.

I found some of the characters off (in part, that's on me. Until I saw the cast photo I'd assumed Amos to be black) and Ceres and the Cant looked a little too shiny and open, and the reactor scene wasn't nearly as Event Horizon as I'd imagined it ... but it was everything I hoped for otherwise, and now I'm torn between wanting to binge the next three episodes or not.

I love how the belters are just slightly different, and their cant is as annoying on screen as it is in the books.

It made me feel like an outsider.
posted by Mezentian at 5:20 AM on December 17, 2015

My first reaction is that someone must have raised their hand in a meeting at SyFy HQ and said "Hey, remember about a decade ago? When we gave a shit instead of throwing random Asylum movies at people? What if we gave a shit again?"

No shit. It's like they realized there's actually an audience for SF. One that gets really excited, makes a lot of noise, and buys stuff.

Watching this episode, I realized that, SciFi(I refuse) is getting us TV shows not only for Leviathan Wakes, but also for The Magicians, and Childhood's End!?!?

So psyched. Now they just need to do The Culture and The Laundry and my life will be complete.
posted by leotrotsky at 6:35 AM on December 17, 2015 [2 favorites]

Not on Syfy, but also coming up: Red Mars tv show run by JMS. On Spike, which makes me a little wary, but I'll take it. I'm equal parts excited and nervous; the Mars trilogy might be my personal most formative novel.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 2:26 PM on December 17, 2015 [1 favorite]

And when they lap The Expanse books:
The Expanse Vs Sharknado.
The Magician Vs Three-Headed Shark
The Culture Vs Mansquito
posted by Mezentian at 11:31 PM on December 17, 2015 [3 favorites]

For calibration purposes, would you agree that the first three books progressively decrease in quality?

I wouldn't agree. I think they work well as a trilogy and I dug them all. #4, however, didn't do much for me (and talking about why would constitute a spoiler as far as the first season of the show is concerned.)
posted by eyeballkid at 11:52 PM on December 17, 2015 [1 favorite]

OK I really enjoyed it. So much so that I started reading the books.
Now the problem, the new Star Wars is out, I haven't seen it, and I need something sci-fi and good to get me through the night. DAMNIT!
posted by evilDoug at 7:06 PM on December 18, 2015

(Minor-Minor-Minor Spoiler): But I love the fact Earth's space navy has uniforms that are SO Earth Alliance, I am waiting for the Battle of the Line.

And, if you think about it, you can probably make Babylon 5 and The Expanse work.
posted by Mezentian at 3:43 AM on December 19, 2015 [1 favorite]

They started out with a bit of that particular kind of exposition-spewing awfulness that hardcore fans will excuse as "World building!" but once they got to the crew of the Cant and their regular people problems gone future, I was in.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:15 AM on December 21, 2015 [1 favorite]

Whoever designed the Ceres undertown really needs to be hired if anyone ever films The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress. Loved the look and feel of it.
posted by Mogur at 6:42 PM on December 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Huh. There are 49 comments in this thread, but no one has posted threads for the following three episodes. The reason I haven't -- and I would have otherwise -- is because I went ahead and watched all those following three that were released as on-demand the first week, then got caught up in the holiday stuff. I didn't even notice that the other episodes hadn't been posted.

One thing that confuses me about how FanFare works is that I can't figure out if it makes sense to post those following three episodes. The most recent one, sure, as it was last night.

Anyway ... how come there was so much discussion about the pilot but no posts for the other episodes?d Maybe other stories like mine? Holidays?

I thought that the show starts to find its footing in these next three episodes, personally.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:00 AM on December 31, 2015

Post all three of them. I'd like to talk about them. Though I haven't seen the most recent one yet.
posted by 256 at 8:29 AM on December 31, 2015

I would also like to discuss the others but I don't have enough experience with FanFare to feel comfortable posting.
posted by bove at 9:44 AM on December 31, 2015

Okay, posted all three of the new episodes. The episode summaries are terrible, but they're what I have available and I totally don't have the energy to write anything better.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 11:18 AM on December 31, 2015

I'm way behind on this, but now that I've watched it, I just want to throw this out there:

I read the books before I knew this would be a show, and I generally enjoyed them (they do dip a bit as they go on). That said, right here in this first episode, there's two changes that really bugged me.

First, regarding Holden calling in the distress signal: this is in very stark difference from the book. In the book, it is made clear that in the vast reaches of space, humanity has enough problems to deal with without also ignoring distress calls, and that not answering a distress call is basically Not A Thing. It even goes through this internal monologue from Holden explaining how the Captain will perfunctorily act like maybe they won't look into it, but it's the XO's job to then be the bad guy and say no, they have to do it. Thus, the Captain saves face with the crew (by not willingly extending their time in deep space), but everyone accepts that the XO is just doing their job.

To have changed in the show seems very weird, and really changes Holden's character. I guess they're just really wanting to push him as a hero, but it feels like this is going to screw up the coming episodes. Not a spoiler, just put simply: if not giving a shit about another ship in distress is somehow totally OK in this universe, why is anyone going to care about what just happened to the Cant?

Similarly, and this one I'm remembering less clearly, but: I do not recall Miller being in cahoots with the guy who was failing to replace filters. I could swear that in the book, Miller tracks the guy down and extracts some level of vengeance (and/or money) because no seriously, in a closed deep space colony like Ceres, fucking with environmental quality is also Not A Thing. It will get you mobbed and thrown out of an airlock, and this is made really clear by Miller. So, having him taking money from the guy as if he doesn't know this, and then half-heartedly coming around on it, also feels very weird.

In both cases, it feels like they're trying to grimdark up the show a bit, and that's kinda a shame. I'll see where it goes in Episode 2, but both of those were very odd things to me for the screenwriters to have changed from novel to TV.
posted by tocts at 7:05 PM on January 11, 2016 [5 favorites]

I finally started watching this, and wow, it's good! Perfect, no, but very good, and effort into all the things I want to see. I loved the shot of the bird hovering in low gravity. Also perfect that there is a rat on board ship.
posted by bq at 12:11 PM on January 13, 2016 [1 favorite]

I rewatched this last night and noticed something new. When Evil Grandma flies to New York there are some aerial shots. The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are now below sea level, with the water held back by enormous walls. The island of Manhattan has giant storm walls around it.
posted by bq at 6:19 PM on January 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

Just checked this out last night, delightful. May pop into subsequent posts.

Have issued comms advisory to mr. artw, perhaps he'll log and respond.

bq, they actually show the walls going up in the title sequence.
posted by mwhybark at 5:37 PM on February 4, 2016 [2 favorites]

I'm tentatively excited, but I really wish that SF TV could get over showing a character torturing someone as shorthand for "this person is ruthless, determined and results-driven." The first thing we learn about Avarasala is that she's a grandmother; the second is that she's convinced that torture will get her what she wants.

I LOVE that they have a fully developed Belter Creole.

(Also, as mentioned by someone upthread -- I'm rewatching Babylon 5 concurrently. It's a good time.)
posted by esker at 7:43 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]

On the low gravity thing on Ceres. In addition to the bird, the scene where Miller threw the air filter dude into the airlock, I got the distinct impression that they emphasized the depth of the lock and how little affect it had on the character when he hit bottom. There were, I think, a few other clues in crowd scenes where the random extra had a largish load that seemed feather-light.

I haven't read the books, so I'm unfamiliar with it from that perspective. But, it's on Netflix in AU, so I've just binged the first six episodes. Enjoying it.
posted by michswiss at 6:57 AM on January 1, 2017

This has shown up on Amazon Prime now so I'm watching it again. It is so, so good. This first episode does a great job of establishing the setting and story and a bunch of world building. I remember it being a bit hard to follow the first time, there's a lot going on, but this second time it felt really tight.
posted by Nelson at 9:00 AM on January 10, 2017

I just started watching this after putting it off for a while. It's really well done, hard to believe it's a Syfy show but I guess Syfy does produce one truly great work of science fiction every decade and they were overdue.

My favorite little detail is Miller's cracked space phone dingus. It says so much about his character.
posted by guiseroom at 5:29 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'd never heard of this show or the book, and randomly saw it on Amazon Prime and thought it looked interesting. When the "Syfy original" logo came on I lowered my expectations immediately. Then I ended up watching the first 6 episodes in a row until my eyes couldn't stay open.

Knowing nothing of the books, this is a damn good space opera. Every character is pretty well done and you're still slowly finding out about their past. I might have to go back and read the books!
posted by numaner at 9:37 AM on July 26, 2017 [2 favorites]

Finally starting this - theres some serious acting talent I recognized in this first episode.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:14 PM on February 22, 2019

I just finished the first book and now I'm watching the first season, and for what it's worth in the books Miller tells an anecdote about a guy who got murdered. When the cops found out he got murdered for not cleaning the air filters they stopped investigating further because that's the kind of Justice you get in the belt.

In the book Holden and Miller are depicted as two guys who are driven to do what they think is Right but disagree about what "Right" actually means. In the show, they both seem to be dirty folks who struggle with doing what's right, with Miller taking bribes from the air guy and Holden agreeing to drop the distress call, but then they both change their minds. I guess that makes for more interesting television but I think I'll miss idealistic boy scout Holden.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 5:27 AM on July 30, 2019

Just a quick note that I'm finally on Team Expanse, after hearing about it for ages... sorry I took so long, but better late than never, eh?
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:57 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]

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