The Expanse


JPL's Ceres Travel Poster

JPL’s Ceres Travel Poster

The Syfy TV network has renewed the series, “The Expanse” for a second season. This show is a space opera, set 200 years in the future, in the 23rd-century. Mars has been colonized and is its own political entity, separate from Earth and none too friendly with it anymore. The asteroid belt is the next frontier and also a no man’s land. The belters are a discontented lot, living in tin cans will do that. Their current gripe is an unexplained scarcity of water. The dwarf planet Ceres is the capital of the belt, where a downtrodden gumshoe is looking for a girl, read by inference Deckard of “Blade Runner” fame. What he is really looking for though is the show’s McGuffin, who happens to be a missing girl. The series is a bit derivative, but still ably performed and I love the genre and enjoyed watching the three episodes that were available on YouTube. There are flecks of originality in the show, like Mormon missionaries on Ceres and a Martian interrogator who uses drugs to enhance his ability, not to read minds, but faces. And there are themes greater than just the genre, like terrorism, climate change and the current wrestling between the US and China. I had watched the show several weeks ago, but when I came across the latest batch of space tourism posters from NASA’s JPL, I knew that I had to write about it. The line on the poster, “last chance for water…” is just serendipity.

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