Author Topic: The Expanse (Season 4)  (Read 2520 times)

NoSleep

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #30 on: December 15, 2019, 12:21:43 PM »
I've watched the whole thing now and I'd say it was, by and large, setting the scene for what's to come. It surprised me when I got to the end, because, of course, season 3 was jam-packed, presumably because they weren't certain what would happen to the series afterwards. The new season seems have confidently slowed the pace right down, which suggests they know they have the time to do so.

Puce Moment

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #31 on: December 15, 2019, 04:45:25 PM »
I am doing my very best not to watch this yet, because I really want to watch it over Xmas. I've watched the first half of the first episode and I can see that this is a major turning point in the show. So many issues have been resolved and now it is all focused on people getting through those holes. I'm hoping it will be able to retain the tension, great hard SF ideas etc.

NoSleep

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #32 on: December 15, 2019, 04:58:05 PM »
I needed some post-election escapism.

Puce Moment

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #33 on: December 15, 2019, 05:12:10 PM »
I needed some post-election escapism.

I just need to hold out until the end of the week then it will be splurge time.

NoSleep

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #34 on: December 15, 2019, 05:19:15 PM »
Turned out to be less of an escape than I could have hoped for, but even that was OK.

Ant Farm Keyboard

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #35 on: December 15, 2019, 05:24:04 PM »
I've watched the whole thing now and I'd say it was, by and large, setting the scene for what's to come. It surprised me when I got to the end, because, of course, season 3 was jam-packed, presumably because they weren't certain what would happen to the series afterwards. The new season seems have confidently slowed the pace right down, which suggests they know they have the time to do so.

As I tried to explain, they took their time to adapt the first book, which took a season and a half, as they also had to establish the universe. Then, the second novel got 13 episodes, but they preferred, as as you said, to complete the third book by the end of season 3, which resulted in the "jam-packed" season, as they put one book and a half into it. Now, we should get one season by novel.

NoSleep

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #36 on: December 15, 2019, 05:35:45 PM »
The only minus was that it felt like things had finally got into gear by the end... and now I have to wait for another year. Will probably rewatch it again very soon and then again just before season 5. It's one of those shows where a rewatch is worthwhile and equally entertaining as the first watch.

Sebastian Cobb

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #37 on: December 21, 2019, 01:01:59 PM »
Rattled through this during the week. All very addictive at the time, but at the end felt like not all that much had happened in any of the parallel stories.

It's shame they killed off Ashford as he was great as a canny belter alongside Drummer. It seems there was more to do with him than say, Bobbie who despite being a good character just seems to be underused sulking as a disgraced ex marine.

Sebastian Cobb

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #38 on: December 21, 2019, 01:25:23 PM »
It seems like the interesting characters have little else to do as well - the Dr/Scientist who spoke to Miller, the Doctor who did the terrorism.

I've not read the books so dunno where it's going or how true to them they are, but I think if you're adapting a series and a character is proving more intriguing or popular than anticipated it's fine to run with that provided you don't balls it up.

Ant Farm Keyboard

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #39 on: December 22, 2019, 12:44:45 AM »
It's shame they killed off Ashford as he was great as a canny belter alongside Drummer. It seems there was more to do with him than say, Bobbie who despite being a good character just seems to be underused sulking as a disgraced ex marine.

They kept Bobbie around this season to provide context on Mars, in the new setting, and to prepare for season 5 where the character will most likely be involved in a bigger way. They already had little to give her in the second part of season 3. In the novels, they can bench her or just mention her during a book or two, but in the show, they preferred to keep her around.

In retrospect, it was obvious that Ashford wouldn't make it till the end. David Strathairn, who has a 40 year career and a Best Actor Oscar nomination, had a recurring role that was only listed in the end credits while Cara Gee, who has a somewhat shorter career and resume, got promoted to the main cast this season. As their parts were similar in size and their scenes were almost always opposite each other, unless Strathairn asked for less exposition in the credits, it meant that he wasn't supposed to stay long term.

Sherman Krank

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #40 on: December 23, 2019, 06:00:01 PM »
Rattled through this during the week. All very addictive at the time, but at the end felt like not all that much had happened in any of the parallel stories.
I got the distinct impression that the sub plots in this season were being used to set up the next season, which suggests to me that 'big fan of the show' Bezos has told them that they can have as many seasons as they want.

It's shame they killed off Ashford as he was great as a canny belter alongside Drummer. It seems there was more to do with him than say, Bobbie who despite being a good character just seems to be underused sulking as a disgraced ex marine.
Ashford was a proxy character created to stand in for Anderson Dawes as the gap between SyFy cancelling The Expanse and Amazon picking it up created a filming clash for actor Jared Harris who was contracted to appear in Netflix show The Crown. Ashford's demise and the fact that they didn't just recast the part of Dawes in the first place seems like an indication that Harris might be back as Dawes in the next season.

That said, Harris is signed up to play one of the lead roles in a new Apple Tv big budget Scifi show based on Isaac Asimov's Foundation series so there might be another fight over him in the future.

NoSleep

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #41 on: December 23, 2019, 06:25:48 PM »
I got the distinct impression that the sub plots in this season were being used to set up the next season, which suggests to me that 'big fan of the show' Bezos has told them that they can have as many seasons as they want.

That was my impression, too.

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Ashford's demise and the fact that they didn't just recast the part of Dawes in the first place seems like an indication that Harris might be back as Dawes in the next season.

There was only one recast as far as I could see; that was Chrisjen's hubby. I was surprised not to see Annushka Volovodov, the pastor. Especially as Amos had latched onto her as his new guiding light in season 3; he was in communication with Julie Mao's sister, whereas I expected him to be best buddies with the pastor.

Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #42 on: December 30, 2019, 02:56:53 AM »
don’t think i liked this season quite as much as the past few, but then again it has gone through a major tone shift. the three plot lines felt very separate, especially bobbie’s flirtation with being an enforcer. i know it was in order to portray that mars is fucked now but a three line conversation could have kept us appraised of all that.

will definitely be watching the next season though. after setting up everything neatly this season hopefully shit will really kick off now.

Puce Moment

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #43 on: December 30, 2019, 05:09:35 PM »
Yes, this was for me by far the weakest season of the show, but it's still a lot fucking better than mostly anything else out there, and is certainly the best SF show on TV. It definitely felt like a bridging season, which was frustrating because I thought the end of season 3 indicated this would really get meaty with all the ring hole hopping gold rush stuff that they flirted with in episode 1. Drummer had very little to do compared to previous seasons, which was mildly annoying, and I was sad they killed Ashford's character as I had really grown to like him. However, if that does mean the return of Dawes then I am happy.

I think my problem was something I was expecting - so much of the mystery of the show was dealt with in season 3 with the ring and the holes. Now, we have a different mystery which is who wiped out the super clever aliens that created the protomolecule and the 'plan' that is always being referred to by people infected with the molecule.

Not sure about the English baddie. Felt a little like something from The Walking Dead.

Anyway, I'm still just as excited to see season 5, and I think it is testament to the strengths of the first three seasons that this (to me) felt like a slight drop-off. I do wish they would move to longer seasons but it must be a hellishly expensive post-prod show to produce.


Sebastian Cobb

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #44 on: December 30, 2019, 05:18:25 PM »
Not sure about the English baddie. Felt a little like something from The Walking Dead.


He was like a cunt officer in Sharpe, but in space.

Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #45 on: January 01, 2020, 03:49:10 PM »
This latest series kept reminding me of Mass Effect. No bad thing.

Inspector Norse

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Re: The Expanse (Season 4)
« Reply #46 on: February 03, 2020, 09:40:38 PM »
Just watched the last episode and yeah, I got the Mass Effect thing a bit too there.

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Not sure about the English baddie. Felt a little like something from The Walking Dead.

The character was a bit rote but Burn Gorman (who's actually something from Game of Thrones I guess) gave it enough heft.
On that note, I was sad to lose Strathairn as he was one of the most entertaining characters to watch; likewise Miller's second exit, because while his character was clichéd, Thomas Jane also had much more presence than a lot of the cast. Steven Strait is getting better though still pretty monotonous and I wish they'd give Alex and Amos more focus. Given up on Naomi now. Frankie Adams is solid as Bobby even when not doing much and Drummer is fun (even if I still don't like the Belter accents) but I grew to really dislike Aravasala over the course of this series, but was glad to see her "lose" and gain some self-awareness in the end.

Agree with the plotlines feeling oddly detached, though it was pretty obvious that the "goods" Esai and his crew were moving were linked to the Belter terrorists. The series in general was a tad too slow-moving - pacing, as someone mentioned above, has long been an issue - and I suppose I was hoping that after the ring opening at the end of series three, we'd get a bit more space exploration rather than a bunch of people hanging around the same disused quarry that turns up in all low-budget sci-fi (it's either that a forest, isn't it?). And speaking of budget, the spaceship bits are always good but there were some very dodgy effects when Holden went down the psychedelic water slide.

I feel like with this show the series always ends just when I feel like it's finally got going. But the themes are strong and deep and by now I care about the characters so even when the show and the characters in it are both trying to find their feet in a new home, it's worth watching.

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