Author Topic: 'The Expanse' on SyFy - First trailer for new space opera show  (Read 36006 times)

Online Lars-J

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SyFy announced last year that they had picked up the rights to 'The Expanse', a space opera based on the popular Expanse series by James S. A. Corey. And now they have premiered the first trailer for the show, starting sometime this year:


(there is a version of this on Youtube, but don't view that one unless you have to - the Vimeo version has corrected colors)

For those who haven't read the books, the books/series take place 200 years in the future, as humanity has colonized the solar system. The technology level is fairly realistic - no artificial gravity, no FTL communication, no FTL drive. The only significant technology leap over today is the 'Epstein drive', a fusion-based propulsion technology that allows +1G acceleration for extended time.

I'm happy to see SyFy finally get back and produce a real "in-space" show - the first since "Battlestar Galactica". I moan as much as most of you about their schlock made for TV crap, but it seems like they have finally made a decent investment here.

EDIT: For those of you who have read the books, here is a trailer breakdown that points out characters from the books: http://alwayssometimesvillains.com/2015/01/15/the-expanse-trailer-breakdown/
« Last Edit: 01/19/2015 06:33 PM by Lars-J »

Online KelvinZero

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Could be excellent! I imagine the slow replies are because we couldn't find anything immediate to gripe about.

Im not sure the last line of that trailer was meant to crack me up though ;)


Online Norm38

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A friend of mine has read the books and is really excited for this show.  I'm going to start reading them soon.  I like that they'll have a lot of existing material and plot lines to pull from.  So they should be able to do some decent story arcs that are consistent and fit together.  I'm thinking more Babylon 5 than ST Voyager.
Anyway, it's been too long since there's been real spaceflight on SyFy, so I'm in.

Offline Lampyridae

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I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.
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Offline QuantumG

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These books are fabulous, I hope they do it justice.
Jeff Bezos has billions to spend on rockets and can go at whatever pace he likes! Wow! What pace is he going at? The slowest possible.

Offline Lampyridae

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For the curious, it seems that the rotational energy of a shaved-off Ceres to 0.3g at the equator is equivalent to one Chixclub crater, or a month's solar radiation for Earth. Those Epstein drives are pretty serious!
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Online Lars-J

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I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.

I thought it was just a massive habitation wheel built into Ceres that was rotating, and not the entire Ceres (how would they stop it from falling apart??), but my memory may be faulty.

Offline Lampyridae

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I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.

I thought it was just a massive habitation wheel built into Ceres that was rotating, and not the entire Ceres (how would they stop it from falling apart??), but my memory may be faulty.

I thought that at first, but I re-read bits of it, thinking "that can't be right." But that's exactly what is written. And yes, it would utterly disintegrate - the rotational energy is a couple of orders of magnitude above the binding energy.

I'm enjoying the characters and the plot but mistakes like that make it quite painful. I don't think the TV series will address any of these.
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Online Norm38

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We're talking about the network that put sharks inside a tornado.  I don't think most of their audience could even tell you what an order of magnitude is, much less why anything they see on screen violates the laws of physics.

I've given up mostly on TV/film sci-fi having any rational scientific basis.  Tried having a discussion with the fanboys on Aint-it-cool-news about why having capital ships flying through atmosphere/gravity wells (ST Into Darkness, SW prequels) was just plain lazy writing.  But they don't care.  "It looks cool!" is good enough for them.

Offline Lampyridae

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Having almost finished the book, I can see why SyFy would pick this. It could very easily be another Nu Battlestar Galactica. No doubt the protomolecule will be going on about "God" and having a "plan" and be the result of adolescent angst combined with human greed and technology and we're all supposed to feel guilty about the Cylons. I can also see them ruining Miller's character too, which is a real pity because he's the most engaging.
« Last Edit: 02/13/2015 02:01 PM by Lampyridae »
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Online Lars-J

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'The Expanse' on SyFy - First trailer for new space opera show
« Reply #10 on: 02/14/2015 03:45 AM »
Having almost finished the book, I can see why SyFy would pick this. It could very easily be another Nu Battlestar Galactica. No doubt the protomolecule will be going on about "God" and having a "plan" and be the result of adolescent angst combined with human greed and technology and we're all supposed to feel guilty about the Cylons. I can also see them ruining Miller's character too, which is a real pity because he's the most engaging.

Careful with the spoilers. Have you finished the first book? Or all of them? (4 out, 5th coming soon)

As far as "as I can see them ruining"... I prefer to be an optimist until proven wrong. :)
« Last Edit: 02/14/2015 03:45 AM by Lars-J »

Offline cadzilla74

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Having read all of The Expanse books I'm looking forward to a TV treatise of the series. I'm also pretty sure the SyFy channel will make a mess of it. Sadly. Awaiting the outcome with bated breath but assuming the worst. Fingers crossed for them to prove me wrong.

Offline Jarnis

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I'm having hard time seeing SyFy having the budget to pull of a good version of the books.

So expecting lots of low-budget CGI, randomly uneven actors and series cancelled midway through :)

(hey, that way I can't be disappointed and if it actually turns out to be any good, it is all good)

Offline speedevil

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Random ballpark.
Ceres mass * 3m/s^2 is 3*10^19N.
Divide by 30GPa for tensile strength of a decent synthetic fibre, and you get a nice round one billion square meters.

Call it a belt 1000km in width or so, 1000m thick.

It's a very small fraction of Ceres total mass, and not completely utterly ridiculous - given mature nanotech.

10^15m^3  of material seems a lot.
We've probably made of the order of 10^10m^3 of plastic, or 5*10^11m^3 of concrete.

Of course - if true, and considered logically, it does have really interesting implications.

Mature nanotech or stupid-scale autofactories are available, that can produce high grade fibres almost free.

Really, really large beanstalks on earth are essentially completely free.





Offline Lampyridae

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Hell, with that kind of high-strength* mass, you could make an atmospheric shield for the whole of Mars, 6m thick. Just don't make the entry code 12345...

For the super-lazy terraforming of Venus, make a world deck at the 1 bar/30 deg celcius line. Rotate for a 4 hour day! Later on, build some sunroofs and settle the lower "half" of Venus once the CO2's all frozen out.

*Of course that's now a different kind of strength but hey nanomaterials
« Last Edit: 03/04/2015 11:28 AM by Lampyridae »
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Offline JasonAW3

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I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.

I thought it was just a massive habitation wheel built into Ceres that was rotating, and not the entire Ceres (how would they stop it from falling apart??), but my memory may be faulty.

The way I'd buid it, is as a pair of O'neil style tubes, one to each side of Ceres with a central 0 gee corridor going through Ceres, forming the axis of the two counter rotating tubes.  With a 150 mile radius per tube, the rotation rate for a .3G centriguge shold be slow enough to allow easy transfer from the center cooridore to a transfer train that loops down to the inner habitat and back up again.  with an atmospheric depth of 150 miles at about 10 psi, (arbitrary choice for this example) the central cooridorpressure at 149.5 miles from the spun surface would be so low as to effectively be a vacume, thus eliminating a pressure loss issue aroundthe mechnical couplings holding the tubes in place around the cooridor, which would be kept in vacume.
My God!  It's full of universes!

Online KelvinZero

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This seemed worth a bump because I just noticed that Google claims the release date is 23rd of November. I don't know where and no doubt it will take months longer to make it to my particular corner of the solar system..  ::)

Offline Oli

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So has anyone seen the pilot?

I thought it was pretty good.

Offline NovaSilisko

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I enjoyed seeing the hard science fiction elements of it on a TV show for once, but couldn't find myself getting into the plot or characters very much.

Offline Jarnis

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I enjoyed seeing the hard science fiction elements of it on a TV show for once, but couldn't find myself getting into the plot or characters very much.

Kinda same feeling, but I'm handing out substantial bonus points for trying to portray zero G on a television budget and not making a complete mess about it, tho they are "cheating" a lot to save in FX shot quantity (magnetic boots) and I haven't quite figured out how Ceres is supposed to work in the show... Based on one specific scene, I guess it is supposed to be like the books, spun up for gravity, so people walk around in low G with feet point towards space - which wouldn't really work without breaking it apart. With of course the catch that you can find dozens of small nits about things that don't match low G, but whatever...

Anyway, this is mostly nitpicking when you have a space show that looks most of the time good enough to pass as plausible. More plausible than many movies with ten times the budget.

Story, at least if it follows the books, indeed starts slow, but if they are keeping the meat of it for the series, some pretty cool stuff is coming.

Definitely going to watch the next episode.

Offline NovaSilisko

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Another point: Apparently Ceres has been spun up so much that something on the equator experiences 0.3g outward acceleration. That seems, to me, like a really good way to... how do I put this... remove Ceres' dwarf planet status.  :P

That's not specific to the show though, it was apparently present in the novels too.
« Last Edit: 11/25/2015 08:06 PM by NovaSilisko »

Online KelvinZero

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Also mentioned back here:

I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.

I thought it was just a massive habitation wheel built into Ceres that was rotating, and not the entire Ceres (how would they stop it from falling apart??), but my memory may be faulty.

I thought that at first, but I re-read bits of it, thinking "that can't be right." But that's exactly what is written. And yes, it would utterly disintegrate - the rotational energy is a couple of orders of magnitude above the binding energy.

I'm enjoying the characters and the plot but mistakes like that make it quite painful. I don't think the TV series will address any of these.

It is a strange flaw.. the particular mention of 250km diameter does make you wonder if the author literally meant ceres. How long have we known Ceres' rough size?

Offline NovaSilisko

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It was mentioned by one character in the first episode that "all" of the ice on Ceres has been mined by Earth and Mars for their uses... So I guess that would be an explanation for why it's smaller...?

I'm getting a general impression of, in spite of a lot of hard science stuff, a lot of numbers and notions being pulled out of someplace dark  :-X Which is a shame.

I wonder how plausible a space elevator on Ceres would be, with a space station for a counterweight, experiencing usable centrifugal force as a result (unless I'm mistaken as to the dynamics... wouldn't the counterweight of a space elevator experience acceleration outward?)
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 12:34 AM by NovaSilisko »

Offline QuantumG

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I really do hope this series continues but considering that I know the plot line I can't imagine it will. At some point the viewers will say "wtf? This is about SPOILERS, I thought it was about space?!" I mean, SPOILERS are pretty popular, but SPOILERS in space? Why? It was fine in a three part sci-fi serial with low circulation.. it wasn't even all that remarkable in that genre, but it seems like lazy writing for tv. Here's hoping they do it with finesse.

Jeff Bezos has billions to spend on rockets and can go at whatever pace he likes! Wow! What pace is he going at? The slowest possible.

Offline yg1968

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I liked the first episode. Looking forward to the second one.

Online KelvinZero

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It was mentioned by one character in the first episode that "all" of the ice on Ceres has been mined by Earth and Mars for their uses... So I guess that would be an explanation for why it's smaller...?

I'm getting a general impression of, in spite of a lot of hard science stuff, a lot of numbers and notions being pulled out of someplace dark  :-X Which is a shame.

I wonder how plausible a space elevator on Ceres would be, with a space station for a counterweight, experiencing usable centrifugal force as a result (unless I'm mistaken as to the dynamics... wouldn't the counterweight of a space elevator experience acceleration outward?)
Oh ok. That makes sufficient sense. I don't see us reaching that scale in 200 years but I dont claim to know what we will be capable of in 50 either. They have torch drives so they are not pretending to be diamond hard SF. Exponential growth could get us to that scale and beyond at some point.

Re the space elevator.. you could also launch a lot of ice that way couldn't you? Rather than relying on the weak solar energy to power mass drivers you could exploit Cere's rotational energy.


Offline Oli

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I enjoyed seeing the hard science fiction elements of it on a TV show for once, but couldn't find myself getting into the plot or characters very much.

The characters are a bit clichéd, washed-up detective and hard-boiled space miners, but I actually liked the plot so far.

I really do hope this series continues but considering that I know the plot line I can't imagine it will. At some point the viewers will say "wtf? This is about SPOILERS, I thought it was about space?!" I mean, SPOILERS are pretty popular, but SPOILERS in space? Why? It was fine in a three part sci-fi serial with low circulation.. it wasn't even all that remarkable in that genre, but it seems like lazy writing for tv. Here's hoping they do it with finesse.

I hope its not zombies  :-\
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 08:58 AM by Oli »

Offline Jarnis

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I enjoyed seeing the hard science fiction elements of it on a TV show for once, but couldn't find myself getting into the plot or characters very much.

The characters are a bit clichéd, washed-up detective and hard-boiled space miners, but I actually liked the plot so far.

I really do hope this series continues but considering that I know the plot line I can't imagine it will. At some point the viewers will say "wtf? This is about SPOILERS, I thought it was about space?!" I mean, SPOILERS are pretty popular, but SPOILERS in space? Why? It was fine in a three part sci-fi serial with low circulation.. it wasn't even all that remarkable in that genre, but it seems like lazy writing for tv. Here's hoping they do it with finesse.

I hope its not zombies  :-\

Sorry can neither confirm nor deny, would be spoilers.

Online RonM

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I don't see us reaching that scale in 200 years but I dont claim to know what we will be capable of in 50 either. They have torch drives so they are not pretending to be diamond hard SF. Exponential growth could get us to that scale and beyond at some point.

200 years is a long time. Back in 1815, the US was getting over the War of 1812. Things have changed a lot since then.

Torch drives are okay. It's still hard SF. Certainly better than almost all SF TV shows.

Offline NovaSilisko

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Certainly better than almost all SF TV shows.

I'll agree with that. I'll certainly be keeping track of the series, even if I haven't found the plot super compelling (yet!)

Offline Jarnis

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Certainly better than almost all SF TV shows.

I'll agree with that. I'll certainly be keeping track of the series, even if I haven't found the plot super compelling (yet!)

Starts slow, but if it tracks the books and follows similar pace as the first episode, things should get interesting by episode 3-4... Can't wait to see the Rocinante.


Online Lars-J

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I finally saw the pilot yesterday when broadcast, and I liked it a lot. But then again I am a fan of the books (even though they vary in quality), and I'm an easy sell for space opera.  ;D

There were certainly some flaws, the main characters will hopefully flesh out and be more appealing than what we have seen so far. But I do appreciate myself some *relatively* hard-ish space opera.

B+ for the first episode.

Offline JasonAW3

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It was mentioned by one character in the first episode that "all" of the ice on Ceres has been mined by Earth and Mars for their uses... So I guess that would be an explanation for why it's smaller...?

I'm getting a general impression of, in spite of a lot of hard science stuff, a lot of numbers and notions being pulled out of someplace dark  :-X Which is a shame.

I wonder how plausible a space elevator on Ceres would be, with a space station for a counterweight, experiencing usable centrifugal force as a result (unless I'm mistaken as to the dynamics... wouldn't the counterweight of a space elevator experience acceleration outward?)

Actually, with Mars or the Moon, a space elevator makes sense, for Ceres, with it's low gravity, it'd actually be more of a problem than a help.  In fact, I can see that what little gravity that Ceres has, would actually work as an advantage for docking of large ships.
My God!  It's full of universes!

Offline gosnold

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2nd (and 3rd and 4th) episodes are out, and are a lot of fun.

Offline Jarnis

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2nd (and 3rd and 4th) episodes are out, and are a lot of fun.

Episode 4 sold the thing for me for good. They are clearly staying very true to the books. This of course means... a proper, honest-to-god space battle that, while having some "artistic" viewpoints at times, made some sense and looked cool. And those last couple of minutes of ep 4... oh my... Rocinante... I want one :)

They are still giving a very honest attempt at portraying zero-G. Okay, budget clearly is not infinite, but what they're doing works for me. Oh, if only they'd have 2-3 times the budget... :)
« Last Edit: 12/18/2015 09:59 PM by Jarnis »

Online Lars-J

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Yes, episode 4 was indeed awesome. Just great stuff, this is what I was hoping for.

Offline Star One

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Online Lars-J

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Renewed for a second season.

http://spinoff.comicbookresources.com/2015/12/31/the-expanse-renewed-for-second-season-on-syfy/

Yeah, I'm excited. :) And 13 episodes for season 2 is good news too. (Season 1 is 10 episodes)

Offline Star One

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Strange from my perspective that there has been no indication if the UK side of the channel has picked this up or not. I imagine they will but it looks like it will be a somewhat delayed showing.

Online Lars-J

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Here's a scene from episode 4, for those of you who are on the fence about watching this show - It does highlight how the show approaches a ship-ship engagement and how it differs from most SF shows:

(NOTE: it does contain a minor spoiler, so if you are already committed and have not reached episode 4, you might wait)



EDIT:

And here is a behind the scenes video for episode 4, highlighting among other things the amount work to create the microgravity scenes:
« Last Edit: 01/05/2016 01:00 AM by Lars-J »

Offline QuantumG

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Oh yeah, and if you found that scene a little too gruesome to watch... you aint seen nothin' yet.
Jeff Bezos has billions to spend on rockets and can go at whatever pace he likes! Wow! What pace is he going at? The slowest possible.

Offline Jarnis

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Yeah, those two clips pretty much cover the bits that "sold" this one to me. Damn, they are actually doing the book, not some lame-ass adaptation of it... Sure, the effects do not quite match movies with budgets twenty times bigger, but on a TV budget they are doing impressive things and in my books the intent counts a lot, even if the final effect isn't always 100% perfect (because you cannot spend days filming 30 seconds of FX scene on a TV series...).

I hope they can keep the quality up.

Online Lars-J

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The VFX supervisor for 'The Expanse' posted a sizing chart for some of the ships of the show:

Offline Jarnis

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Ep 5 was bit slower (guess the blew a lot of the FX budget on Ep 4) but still going strong and still following the first book very closely. Definitely worth watching and now on my very very short "must see immediately" list :)

Offline GalacticIntruder

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I don't expect too many Space Battles, given the budget. Not too sure about the Ship to Ship Space Battles with kinetic weapons and missiles.

I liked Garvey taking a rail gun slug to the head, but without knowing too much about the relative velocities of the ship and slug and armor capability, I didn't find it too realistic. A little too neat and convenient.  I would expect spalling and shrapnel to shred the cabin, even if the slug punches through several layers of the ship.

I have yet to see Mars, just the Mars "Navy", with its Earth hating, rebellious Martians. I love the politics, and factions. Probably the most realistic and plausible future I have seen. So far there is no star of the show, and no one to root for except Miller.
« Last Edit: 01/07/2016 08:10 PM by GalacticIntruder »
Watch out for those pesky corners, they have teeth.

Offline Jarnis

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I don't expect too many Space Battles, given the budget. Not too sure about the Ship to Ship Space Battles with kinetic weapons and missiles.

I liked Garvey taking a rail gun slug to the head, but without knowing too much about the relative velocities of the ship and slug and armor capability, I didn't find it too realistic. A little too neat and convenient.  I would expect spalling and shrapnel to shred the cabin, even if the slug punches through several layers of the ship.

I have yet to see Mars, just the Mars "Navy", with its Earth hating, rebellious Martians. I love the politics, and factions. Probably the most realistic and plausible future I have seen. So far there is no star of the show, and no one to root for except Miller.

Even in the book that was pretty much "by design".

Eventually the Rocinante bunch, especially Holden, will become a bigger "star" to root for, but the first book is very much an "universe-building story" where the main "star" is pretty much the solar system and all the factions and the political situation, with the characters often being just pawns, getting thrown here and there.

And there will be further space-action to come, tho I guess the "acquiring" of Taichi/Rocinante and the battle before that (Ep 4) are the main "pew pew" bits that I can recall in the first book.

Offline Ronpur50

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Finally watched the first episode and, wow, I am hooked. 

Offline JasonAW3

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I started reading the first book, and it all went pretty well until I got to the bit about Ceres. Which the books says is 250km in diameter and has been spun up to provide 0.3g for its six million inhabitants... even if it's not a typo and the excess mass has been stripped off, it's still badly threatening to my suspension of disbelief.

I thought it was just a massive habitation wheel built into Ceres that was rotating, and not the entire Ceres (how would they stop it from falling apart??), but my memory may be faulty.

I thought that at first, but I re-read bits of it, thinking "that can't be right." But that's exactly what is written. And yes, it would utterly disintegrate - the rotational energy is a couple of orders of magnitude above the binding energy.

I'm enjoying the characters and the plot but mistakes like that make it quite painful. I don't think the TV series will address any of these.

That must be a mistake.  They have giant ships docking at what appears to be the equater of Ceres and there doesn't appear to be any sign of exterior rotation.  (No correction for spin, objects off the surface showing no sign of spin motion, shadows staying steady, etc).

     Maybe hollowed out and built a spin-structure inside, but doesn't appear to be spinning very quickly from exernal views.
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Offline Thorny

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Finally watched the first episode and, wow, I am hooked. 

I fell asleep during it. Did anything actually happen later on? It was all talk, talk, talk.

Online Lars-J

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Finally watched the first episode and, wow, I am hooked. 

I fell asleep during it. Did anything actually happen later on? It was all talk, talk, talk.

Yes, things happened ;) Maybe you should try again when you are more awake. Or perhaps it isn't for you.
« Last Edit: 01/11/2016 10:22 PM by Lars-J »

Offline QuantumG

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Or read the books.
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Online Coastal Ron

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Or read the books.

Usually there is cause for disappointment when you compare books with their TV/movies adaptations.

I haven't read the source books for The Expanse, but I have been enjoying the TV show.  After the show has ended that may inspire me to dig deeper into the source books though.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

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'The Expanse' on SyFy - First trailer for new space opera show
« Reply #52 on: 01/12/2016 12:21 AM »
Or read the books.

Usually there is cause for disappointment when you compare books with their TV/movies adaptations.

I haven't read the source books for The Expanse, but I have been enjoying the TV show.  After the show has ended that may inspire me to dig deeper into the source books though.

This adaption is a little unusual in that both authors of the book series (they co-write under one pseudonym) are very involved with the show, as producers and part of the writing staff. So far it is very faithful to the books.

If you enjoy the show, I would not call the reading the books essential in any way. They are not high literature, but a very enjoyable space opera series (rare these days) in a fairly realistic SF environment.
« Last Edit: 01/12/2016 12:27 AM by Lars-J »

Offline Ronpur50

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I can't believe Shohreh Aghdashloo  is in this.  She is one of my favorite actresses, ever since her "day" on "24".

Offline Endeavour_01

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I can't believe Shohreh Aghdashloo  is in this.  She is one of my favorite actresses, ever since her "day" on "24".

She was great on 24 and I really like her acting and her character in this show.
I cheer for both NASA and commercial space. For SLS, Orion, Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy, Dragon, Starliner, Cygnus and all the rest!
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Episode 8 was great. My favorite so far. And finally some story lines are intersecting.

Here are two clips from the episode.
1. The crew exploring an small asteroid


2. The crew getting into a great shootout on Eros (some spoilers)

Offline SwissCheese

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Episode 8 was great. My favorite so far. And finally some story lines are intersecting.

I agree :)

I love the books, always jump on them as soon as they get published, and I also really like the show.

Offline gosnold

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The last two episodes of season 1 have aired, and they were as tense as episode 8.
Their only problem was that because of them I have bought the books because I could not wait for season 2.

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i think the series delivered very well, can't wait for s2 :)

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The last two episodes of season 1 have aired, and they were as tense as episode 8.
Their only problem was that because of them I have bought the books because I could not wait for season 2.

Just an FYI - in case you don't want to read ahead of the TV show... Season 1 only covers about 70-75% of the first book. Fortunately season 2 is 13 episode (instead of 10), so they might still be able to cover most or all of book 2 in season 2. But the show runners have warned that they aren't going to be held hostage to a "1 book = 1 season" format.

But they are good reads, IMO, you can't go wrong with them. My biggest complaint with them is that book 5 felt like half a book (no real ending) - but I don't want to discuss that too much here.
« Last Edit: 02/03/2016 10:44 PM by Lars-J »

Offline sanman

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I've just watched the first season (10 episodes) and it looks pretty cool and suspenseful. But because I couldn't wait for season 2 to show up, I read ahead on the internet as to what's going to happen - and it sounds pretty amazing.

Arthur C Clarke's 2001 universe meets Rodney Moore's BSG reboot meets Stracynski's Babylon5.

Good to read that Syfy has picked up the second season. I liked all the characters.









« Last Edit: 02/07/2016 03:38 AM by sanman »

Offline fregate

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I highly recommend to read books from the series - TV Series left some IMPORTANT details :(
« Last Edit: 02/07/2016 05:01 AM by fregate »
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Offline sanman

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I guess they had to adapt from one medium to another, but there was a lot of collaboration between the writers and the producers:



« Last Edit: 02/08/2016 01:01 AM by sanman »

Offline gosnold

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http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2925/1

An article on the Space Review, written by Dwayne Day, on the Expanse and the disconnect between the depiction of space settlement in media and the image its advocates want to put forward:
Quote
The Expanse is the closest depiction of what space settlement advocates must see when they dream—and yet it is not a very positive vision of the future.

Unmarked spoilers for Europa report and Interstellar (and the Martian to some extent).

Offline gosnold

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New trailer for season 2 of the Expanse, which premieres February 1:

Offline Triptych

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I binge watched the entire season in one weekend last month. It's pretty good, the only thing I found implausible are the stealth ships but other than that I'm looking forward to season 2. Now I'm gonna binge watch Westworld this weekend.  :D

Offline JasonAW3

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I binge watched the entire season in one weekend last month. It's pretty good, the only thing I found implausible are the stealth ships but other than that I'm looking forward to season 2. Now I'm gonna binge watch Westworld this weekend.  :D

What did you find implausible?

      Most craft in space aren't going to NEED to be stealthy, including the military craft.  Stealth is just another form of Electronic Warfare, typically using reduced radar, heat and RF signatures.

      Forms of polymerized aerogels, and RF absorbing pants or structures, as well as structural configurations, would reduce the radar profile, use of focused X-ray LIDAR would allow for sensor sweeps, while passive sensor arrays would allow data gathering from available light thermal and RF emissions of potential targets, while extensive use of both low power equipment requirements for equipment and fiber optic communications  throughout the ship for computer and instrument datalinks, rather than standard wiring, would further reduce induced RF emissions.

      Heat and thermal emissions would be reduced by use of cold gas maneuvering thrusters, waste heat dumping directly into the exhaust, via coolant dumping, as well as using heat sinks to absorb waste heat that can't be dumped prior to attack.  The main engines would be used for short, high G thrust bursts, and they would be housed in set of cooling panels, dumping to the heat sinks for later passive or active emissions, to shield the thermal, optical and radiation signature of said bursts.  The inner hull would likely be encased within either supercooled  liquid hydrogen, or another, potentially less volatile liquidized gas, to act as both thermal barrier and coolant.  interior crew cabin temperatures would be kept low, to the minimum tolerance of the crew, to further minimize potential IR emissions.

      Overall; most craft wouldn't try to be stealthy, as in an emergency, they'd WANT to be found.  The stealth craft?  It would be a potential suicide mission on multiple fronts.
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Online RonM

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I binge watched the entire season in one weekend last month. It's pretty good, the only thing I found implausible are the stealth ships but other than that I'm looking forward to season 2. Now I'm gonna binge watch Westworld this weekend.  :D

What did you find implausible?

      Most craft in space aren't going to NEED to be stealthy, including the military craft.  Stealth is just another form of Electronic Warfare, typically using reduced radar, heat and RF signatures.

      Forms of polymerized aerogels, and RF absorbing pants or structures, as well as structural configurations, would reduce the radar profile, use of focused X-ray LIDAR would allow for sensor sweeps, while passive sensor arrays would allow data gathering from available light thermal and RF emissions of potential targets, while extensive use of both low power equipment requirements for equipment and fiber optic communications  throughout the ship for computer and instrument datalinks, rather than standard wiring, would further reduce induced RF emissions.

      Heat and thermal emissions would be reduced by use of cold gas maneuvering thrusters, waste heat dumping directly into the exhaust, via coolant dumping, as well as using heat sinks to absorb waste heat that can't be dumped prior to attack.  The main engines would be used for short, high G thrust bursts, and they would be housed in set of cooling panels, dumping to the heat sinks for later passive or active emissions, to shield the thermal, optical and radiation signature of said bursts.  The inner hull would likely be encased within either supercooled  liquid hydrogen, or another, potentially less volatile liquidized gas, to act as both thermal barrier and coolant.  interior crew cabin temperatures would be kept low, to the minimum tolerance of the crew, to further minimize potential IR emissions.

      Overall; most craft wouldn't try to be stealthy, as in an emergency, they'd WANT to be found.  The stealth craft?  It would be a potential suicide mission on multiple fronts.

Even if there was someway to hide the IR signature of the ship, you are not going to be able to hide the IR signature of the main engine exhaust.

Checkout what they have to say about stealth in space here:

http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/spacewardetect.php#nostealth

Offline JasonAW3

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Even if there was someway to hide the IR signature of the ship, you are not going to be able to hide the IR signature of the main engine exhaust.

Checkout what they have to say about stealth in space here:

http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/spacewardetect.php#nostealth

Maybe not completely hide it, but both diminish it and shield it from view.  The idea here is to use, for the approach from long range, short, high G thrusts, to minimize the initial IR signature, course correcting with cold gas thrusters.  Once the initial course is established, continuous thrust wouldn't be required.  Thrust would then be used at relatively close range for the actual attack.  (BTW; LH2 would most likely NOT be the coolant of choice, as dumped into the exhaust, it would tend to flare up.  My bad on that).

      The idea is to shield and MINIMIZE the IR signature.  You can't eliminate it entirely, but you can reduce it.
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Offline Triptych

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I binge watched the entire season in one weekend last month. It's pretty good, the only thing I found implausible are the stealth ships but other than that I'm looking forward to season 2. Now I'm gonna binge watch Westworld this weekend.  :D

What did you find implausible?

      Most craft in space aren't going to NEED to be stealthy, including the military craft.  Stealth is just another form of Electronic Warfare, typically using reduced radar, heat and RF signatures.

      Forms of polymerized aerogels, and RF absorbing pants or structures, as well as structural configurations, would reduce the radar profile, use of focused X-ray LIDAR would allow for sensor sweeps, while passive sensor arrays would allow data gathering from available light thermal and RF emissions of potential targets, while extensive use of both low power equipment requirements for equipment and fiber optic communications  throughout the ship for computer and instrument datalinks, rather than standard wiring, would further reduce induced RF emissions.

      Heat and thermal emissions would be reduced by use of cold gas maneuvering thrusters, waste heat dumping directly into the exhaust, via coolant dumping, as well as using heat sinks to absorb waste heat that can't be dumped prior to attack.  The main engines would be used for short, high G thrust bursts, and they would be housed in set of cooling panels, dumping to the heat sinks for later passive or active emissions, to shield the thermal, optical and radiation signature of said bursts.  The inner hull would likely be encased within either supercooled  liquid hydrogen, or another, potentially less volatile liquidized gas, to act as both thermal barrier and coolant.  interior crew cabin temperatures would be kept low, to the minimum tolerance of the crew, to further minimize potential IR emissions.

      Overall; most craft wouldn't try to be stealthy, as in an emergency, they'd WANT to be found.  The stealth craft?  It would be a potential suicide mission on multiple fronts.

Even if there was someway to hide the IR signature of the ship, you are not going to be able to hide the IR signature of the main engine exhaust.

Checkout what they have to say about stealth in space here:

http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/spacewardetect.php#nostealth
Exactly. The linked article itself cites the fact that we can still detect Voyager I from earth even though its billions of kilometers away and its got a very faint radio signal. Stealth in space is impossible, especially with fusion drives- the heat signature cannot be masked.

Offline JasonAW3

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Exactly. The linked article itself cites the fact that we can still detect Voyager I from earth even though its billions of kilometers away and its got a very faint radio signal. Stealth in space is impossible, especially with fusion drives- the heat signature cannot be masked.


The problem here is simple; We know where to look for Voyager 1.  A stealthed craft would be much harder to see.       

      As to fusion drives; There'd be next to zero neutron emissions, and the only other way to detect them would be by thermal signature.  (Assuming maximum radar and thermal stealthing)

      A short, properly shielded burst of thrust, (Assuming a pulse, much like a small nuke going off within a containment system designed to maximize the directed energy, kinetic thermal, and otherwise, in a direction opposite of the direction that the craft is going) COULD and likely would, be written off as transient sensor noise.  Especially if it came from a craft that no one else even knew existed.

      As a simple case study; even with all of the visual and radio telescope capabilities of today, only a small fraction of the NEO asteroids have been found and had their orbits plotted.

      Even assuming vast improvements in LIDAR, Radar, and possibly X-ray LIDAR, and optical and thermal detection systems, it's still going to be incredibly difficult to find a relatively small space craft, even unstealthed craft, at distances exceeding tens or hundreds of thousands of kilometers away, let alone from millions of kilometers away.  Transient thermal pulses could be written off as small, high velocity asteroids impacting one another.

      And; even assuming all of the above is true, in the story, they supposedly developed some form of much more efficient engine, that uses far less reaction mass, but no one has explained precisely how they work, either in the books or in the series.  It may be that it might be far easier to shield whatever thermal or radiation emissions that they produce.  Even their radiation shielding is far better than ours, (If I remember the episode correctly) as they had a character that the detective was pursuing, (whose name had been hijacked by another individual, who wound up dead) who was in a race, skimming the atmosphere of Jupiter.  (Didn't turn out well for him).

      That close to Jupiter is a lethal zone of radiation, with current technology, but with technology in a couple of hundred years?  Who Knows?
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Offline Blackstar

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Before the new season starts, catch up here:

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2925/1


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Exactly. The linked article itself cites the fact that we can still detect Voyager I from earth even though its billions of kilometers away and its got a very faint radio signal. Stealth in space is impossible, especially with fusion drives- the heat signature cannot be masked.


The problem here is simple; We know where to look for Voyager 1.  A stealthed craft would be much harder to see.       

      As to fusion drives; There'd be next to zero neutron emissions, and the only other way to detect them would be by thermal signature.  (Assuming maximum radar and thermal stealthing)

      A short, properly shielded burst of thrust, (Assuming a pulse, much like a small nuke going off within a containment system designed to maximize the directed energy, kinetic thermal, and otherwise, in a direction opposite of the direction that the craft is going) COULD and likely would, be written off as transient sensor noise.  Especially if it came from a craft that no one else even knew existed.

      As a simple case study; even with all of the visual and radio telescope capabilities of today, only a small fraction of the NEO asteroids have been found and had their orbits plotted.

      Even assuming vast improvements in LIDAR, Radar, and possibly X-ray LIDAR, and optical and thermal detection systems, it's still going to be incredibly difficult to find a relatively small space craft, even unstealthed craft, at distances exceeding tens or hundreds of thousands of kilometers away, let alone from millions of kilometers away.  Transient thermal pulses could be written off as small, high velocity asteroids impacting one another.

      And; even assuming all of the above is true, in the story, they supposedly developed some form of much more efficient engine, that uses far less reaction mass, but no one has explained precisely how they work, either in the books or in the series.  It may be that it might be far easier to shield whatever thermal or radiation emissions that they produce.  Even their radiation shielding is far better than ours, (If I remember the episode correctly) as they had a character that the detective was pursuing, (whose name had been hijacked by another individual, who wound up dead) who was in a race, skimming the atmosphere of Jupiter.  (Didn't turn out well for him).

      That close to Jupiter is a lethal zone of radiation, with current technology, but with technology in a couple of hundred years?  Who Knows?
If youve read the article cited you will note that they actually found Voyager, using a network of telescopes that was able to find the glow from the probe's transmitter, which was emitting around 20 watts- about the same as a lightbulb. And that was while it was tens of billions of km away. This was using today's tech. The fact is the probe stuck out like a sore thumb in the vastness of space.

The space shuttle's maneuvering thrusters can be seen as far as the asteroid belt.

Everything we know about fusion is that it burns hotter than fission, enough to vaporize reaction chambers. It also produces a lot of radiation.

So if you want to believe that ships can be stealthed in space, fine, go ahead. Science does not back it up.

I like The Expanse, it gets a lot of things right- from the effects of gravity and physics and all that. It does have one fantasy point which is the stealthed ships, and I'll let it slide, simply because the rest of the show is awesome.

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So if you want to believe that ships can be stealthed in space, fine, go ahead. Science does not back it up.

What science are you assuming can find stealthy ships in unexpected places millions of kilometers away?

Quote
I like The Expanse, it gets a lot of things right- from the effects of gravity and physics and all that. It does have one fantasy point which is the stealthed ships, and I'll let it slide, simply because the rest of the show is awesome.

It's science fiction, not science fact, so there is no way to know who is right or wrong.

For me, I look forward to be entertained without being distracted by obvious inconsistencies, and since I know we have stealth here on Earth, having it in space is not a big leap of faith.  YMMV.
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Offline Triptych

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What science are you assuming can find stealthy ships in unexpected places millions of kilometers away?

So you edited out the part where I explained how we were able to find Voyager and then ask the same question again? Hmmm.  ???

Quote
It's science fiction, not science fact, so there is no way to know who is right or wrong.
Yes, thank you. As Ive said , I like the show and the homage it pays to science for the most part, I was commenting on why I found the stealth ships to be implausible while the rest of it is good. It's not a "you must love everything about it or you hate it" choice you know.

Quote

For me, I look forward to be entertained without being distracted by obvious inconsistencies, and since I know we have stealth here on Earth, having it in space is not a big leap of faith.  YMMV.
Earth's atmosphere is not space. But hey- believe what you want, it's a free country.
« Last Edit: 12/14/2016 03:36 AM by Triptych »

Offline high road

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What science are you assuming can find stealthy ships in unexpected places millions of kilometers away?

So you edited out the part where I explained how we were able to find Voyager and then ask the same question again? Hmmm.  ???


Haven't been able to get a legal look at the series yet, but I'm reading the books. They clearly say that they can detect 'something', but their software doesn't recognize it as a ship, due to it's much lower (yet not inexistant) heat signature and lack of other emissions. Stealth planes show up on radar as well, only much 'smaller' than their actual size. Later on, they explain that the stealth ships can temporarily reduce their own heat signature, but have to dump the stored heat eventually. As soon as they fire up any system, their 'stealth mode' is broken and they are easily recognizable.

The other ships can only detect 'something', but the next time they encounter the stealth ship, the signal is instantly recognized by the main characters. One of the secondary characters attempts to make it off the ship with the detected signature, so the stealth ships would be rendered useless, as it would be easy for ships to detect them. The stealth ships are at that stage an experimental technology with limited military use (you have to destroy everything that ever encounters them to keep them useful), of which it is never stated that they are used by anyone else than the company that designed them, and only in a way to hide their secret projects. It's not like anyone's shouting that stealth ships exist.

A planet's worth of detection equipment would probably not have any problem to detect stealth ships, once they know what to look for. In fact, I'm not going to explain this further because there's a minor plot point about this in the second book, which is probably the next season. But the latency between detection of something on one location and communicating that knowledge out to where it's needed, is a constant plot point in the series. The reason why you need to know what to look for, is that the series is set in a future where the outer solar system is riddled with wreckage and jettissoned fusion cores from decades of rag-tag space colonists trying to make a living in harsh economic conditions. There would be a lot more strange signals out there than there is now.

As for unbelievable technologies, besides from economics, spinning up Eros and Ceres without disintegrating them, and then have them hollowed out deep enough for the 'slums' to experience coriolis effect high enough to seriously impact all main characters rather than rendering them a little queezy is mental. Especially when some of these characters are used to drink all kinds of moonshine broth.
« Last Edit: 12/14/2016 07:58 AM by high road »

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Purely IMO, Expanse has the most  realistic-looking spaceflight technology that I've seen in sci-fi so far; even better than season-1 Babylon 5 (before, under pressure from the studios, JMS removed Newtonian physics because the viewers didn't think it looked 'realistic').
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Offline Jarnis

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Purely IMO, Expanse has the most  realistic-looking spaceflight technology that I've seen in sci-fi so far; even better than season-1 Babylon 5 (before, under pressure from the studios, JMS removed Newtonian physics because the viewers didn't think it looked 'realistic').

In all honesty, B5 tried to retain that long after first season, but doing it in a more subtle way. They went all "scyfy" on it only after Foundation Imaging stopped doing the effects (start of season 4, if my faulty memory is correct) - funnily this happened because Paramount gave Foundation Imaging a gig on doing effects for Star Trek: Voyager and B5 producers didn't trust the company could still do B5 as well with their most senior animators tied with Voyager work.

Netter Digital was then born - a new effects house that got started almost out of the blue to do the remaining B5 seasons. They were not terrible, but they were not Foundation Imaging either.

Ron Thronton did some impressive CGI stuff on Amigas and desktop PCs back when everyone else was still using models. This post actually led me to google him up and find out that he too died during 2016. What a crummy year it was

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/ron-thornton-dead-babylon-5-visual-effects-designer-was-59-949981

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Season 2 just premiered yesterday with a double episode, a good start to a new season!  8)

The show is now getting to the conclusion of book 1.

My only complaint would be that they are IMO overdoing it with Draper. I know she is a fan favorite, but she is being shoehorned in as a badass a bit too strongly.
« Last Edit: 02/02/2017 04:11 PM by Lars-J »

Offline francesco nicoli

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Season 2 just premiered yesterday with a double episode, a good start to a new season!  8)

The show is now getting to the conclusion of book 1.

My only complaint would be that they are IMO overdoing it with Draper. I know she is a fan favorite, but she is being shoehorned in as a badass a bit too strongly.

oh c'mon, in Babilon's Ashes she rocks. Seriously, no spoilers but.....

Offline GalacticIntruder

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So far so good. Seems more coherent and has deeper characters than Season 1.
Watch out for those pesky corners, they have teeth.

Offline mjcrsmith

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I like that the authors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck (aka James S. A. Corey) are heavily involved with the TV version.  It will be interesting on how they adapt the books for TV and what changes they will make with the hindsight of writing the 6 books.

Offline ZachF

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Definitely liking how season 2 is going so far.  ;D

When most other shows/movies are "WWII in space" this show is pretty refeshing...

Online Lars-J

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Season 2 just premiered yesterday with a double episode, a good start to a new season!  8)

The show is now getting to the conclusion of book 1.

My only complaint would be that they are IMO overdoing it with Draper. I know she is a fan favorite, but she is being shoehorned in as a badass a bit too strongly.

oh c'mon, in Babilon's Ashes she rocks. Seriously, no spoilers but.....

Yeah, but you show it through character actions that matter to the plot. Like Amos was introduced over season 1. Not silly things like arm-wrestling a power armor arm.
« Last Edit: 02/02/2017 06:37 PM by Lars-J »

Offline Blackstar

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I really enjoyed the season opener (actually the first two episodes). I found myself on the edge of my seat for the battle sequence.

There were a lot of things I liked about it. They showed that each of the major powers--Earth, Mars, the Belt--has people who want war and people who really want to prevent it. But what I liked about it was that even some of the people who wanted war, like the Mars Marine, have a point. They're not just caricatures, they have motives and cannot be dismissed out of hand. For many of the people involved they are doing a calculation in their heads: would war be good or bad for their side? And they're coming to different conclusions.

And while the big political stuff is interesting and well done, the show also works well on the individual level. Joe Miller, the cop, is world-weary, but also has a sense of responsibility. When he insists on riding along with the Belters on the raid, it's because he knows that they're a bunch of brawlers with no leadership and no real training. And when he gets onto the station, he's proven right: they just want to shoot everybody in sight rather than figure out what the heck is going on. Amos is dangerous, but not because he's "evil" but because he doesn't seem to have any kind of moral compass at all. As Joe says about him, "his antenna's broken."

And then you have the combination of the big political stuff and the individuals. It's not just the leadership trying to make strategic decisions, sometimes--oftentimes--it falls to individuals making right and wrong and altruistic and selfish decisions. And one individual doing something stupid can mess everything up.



The IMDB cast page is here:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3230854/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1
« Last Edit: 02/02/2017 07:37 PM by Blackstar »

Offline ZachF

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I really enjoyed the season opener (actually the first two episodes). I found myself on the edge of my seat for the battle sequence.

There were a lot of things I liked about it. They showed that each of the major powers--Earth, Mars, the Belt--has people who want war and people who really want to prevent it. But what I liked about it was that even some of the people who wanted war, like the Mars Marine, have a point. They're not just caricatures, they have motives and cannot be dismissed out of hand. For many of the people involved they are doing a calculation in their heads: would war be good or bad for their side? And they're coming to different conclusions.

And while the big political stuff is interesting and well done, the show also works well on the individual level. Joe Miller, the cop, is world-weary, but also has a sense of responsibility. When he insists on riding along with the Belters on the raid, it's because he knows that they're a bunch of brawlers with no leadership and no real training. And when he gets onto the station, he's proven right: they just want to shoot everybody in sight rather than figure out what the heck is going on. Amos is dangerous, but not because he's "evil" but because he doesn't seem to have any kind of moral compass at all. As Joe says about him, "his antenna's broken."

And then you have the combination of the big political stuff and the individuals. It's not just the leadership trying to make strategic decisions, sometimes--oftentimes--it falls to individuals making right and wrong and altruistic and selfish decisions. And one individual doing something stupid can mess everything up.

Did you notice on the battle when the rounds are flying through the ship, and they go under thrust and the glowing shrapnel trails "fall" to the floor?

Offline Blackstar

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Did you notice on the battle when the rounds are flying through the ship, and they go under thrust and the glowing shrapnel trails "fall" to the floor?

I'm going to rewatch the battle sequence. I noticed the rounds going through the ship and thought that was pretty cool. Did not notice them falling to the floor.

There's a great quote where Jim tells Naomi to depressurize the ship and she complains about it. He explains that when they get hit the hull will depressurize anyway, and she responds with something like "Yeah, but that seems like we're saying it's okay to do that." I loved that line.
« Last Edit: 02/05/2017 11:47 PM by Blackstar »

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I'm going to wait until the season is over and then binge watch it in one sitting.  ;D

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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IMO, if any major changes are made in the TV version, I think that there is going to be a more obvious 'good guys' and 'bad guys' amongst the three major factions. I'm thinking that Fred Johnson's OPA faction will be more 'white hat' when we get to the Ganymede Crisis, simply because it will be easier to have the protagonists stick with an established ally group.

I've already noticed that the TV adaption is somewhat exaggerating Holden's sometimes-irresponsible 'the people have to know' attitude, which makes me think that the coming episodes will more greatly emphasise the clash of ideologies between Holden and Miller when it comes to what is objectively right and wrong when facing a great evil.

Finally, I'm suspecting that there is going to be a rewrite of the Miller/Juliette Mao interactions purely because of the fact that phantom!Julie has only started appearing since the Eros Crisis began. I think that she's going to be presented as a far more proactive character in the TV adaption. It is even possible that she may not be killed off at the end of the Eros arc (although such a change would create a huge downstream change with an ever-widening arc of consequences for future stories).

My only complaint would be that they are IMO overdoing it with Draper. I know she is a fan favorite, but she is being shoehorned in as a badass a bit too strongly.

It's harder to phase major characters in and out in TV than it is in giant novel-length books. I suspect that this is why they had Undersecretary Chrisjan Avarasarala appear a book early in the TV show. I think that the primary crew of the Rocinante will be more fixed in the TV show than it is in the books and, yes, that means establishing Bobbie and getting her on a certain 'salvaged' missile frigate earlier is going to be a thing.

Long-Term Plot Changes Call:
I suspect that Avarasarala (Possibly using Johnson as an agent) will be established as the protagonists long-term patron and will be the 'voice from the speakers' who gives out assignments. Given how the character is portrayed in the show, there will always be a degree of uncertainty if she's doing this to maintain peace and order in the solar system or just because she fancies herself as the first Solar Empress.


[edit]
Fixed quote tags
« Last Edit: 02/03/2017 09:25 AM by Ben the Space Brit »
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Online Lars-J

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Ben... I don't think everyone here has read the books, so be careful about spoiling future events.

For those who have seen the episode, here is a short part of the 'battle', allowing you to see some details that have been pointed out, like the projectile slag falling down when under thrust:
« Last Edit: 02/03/2017 04:13 PM by Lars-J »

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'The Expanse' on SyFy - First trailer for new space opera show
« Reply #90 on: 02/04/2017 01:54 AM »
I forgot to mention that I really appreciated that they are paying close attention to spin gravity this season - see especially the docking scene at Tycho station and also the spacing. They are also making a better distinction about gravity on the ship and how it only happens due to being under thrust. Thumbs up!
« Last Edit: 02/04/2017 01:55 AM by Lars-J »

Offline nacnud

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I forgot to mention that I really appreciated that they are paying close attention to spin gravity this season - see especially the docking scene at Tycho station and also the spacing. They are also making a better distinction about gravity on the ship and how it only happens due to being under thrust. Thumbs up!

The docking irked me a bit. I presume you were talking about when Josephus Miller was faffing around in zero g until the moment the ship docked, when he fell to the floor. The ship would have had to match velocities before docking, not at the instant of docking. He should have fallen but as the ship was maneuvering.

Reverse the order of the shots of Jo falling and the ship maneuvering and I'd be happy :)
« Last Edit: 02/04/2017 02:19 AM by nacnud »

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'The Expanse' on SyFy - First trailer for new space opera show
« Reply #92 on: 02/04/2017 02:23 AM »
I forgot to mention that I really appreciated that they are paying close attention to spin gravity this season - see especially the docking scene at Tycho station and also the spacing. They are also making a better distinction about gravity on the ship and how it only happens due to being under thrust. Thumbs up!

The docking irked me a bit. I presume you were talking about when Josephus Miller was faffing around in zero g until the moment the ship docked, when he fell to the floor. The ship would have had to match velocities before docking, not at the instant of docking. He should have fallen but as the ship was maneuvering.

Reverse the order of the shots of Jo falling and the ship maneuvering and I'd be happy :)

Nope. This is a spin station. The docking is the opposite of releasing something from the spin. To dock, you carefully put yourself on a intersecting/tangential trajectory with the clamps at the outside of the spin area, and they grab the ship when it is closest, causing sudden gravity. What is shown is accurate.
« Last Edit: 02/04/2017 02:24 AM by Lars-J »

Offline nacnud

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I made a video to show, yes I am procrastinating from doing more important things.
« Last Edit: 02/04/2017 03:33 AM by nacnud »

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I looked at it again, and I suppose it is inconclusive from the effects, but it (rapid gravity) does match how it would be most efficient to dock with a spin station. Trying to match velocity would just be a waste of propellant.

Offline nacnud

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Given the ships can sustain high g for days I don't think propellent is of much concern  8) Oh and I made a video, see above!

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Given the ships can sustain high g for days I don't think propellent is of much concern  8) Oh and I made a video, see above!

Nice video, and a reasonable interpretation from the VFX alone, but it is not the most efficient way to dock - and the live action doesn't match it.  :)

Offline Dalhousie

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You have to wonder at the amount of space debris infesting the solar system by then, and the general casualness about generating it.
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You have to wonder at the amount of space debris infesting the solar system by then, and the general casualness about generating it.

Space is big, much bigger than we can wrap our minds around. And ships would have radar and other means to detect most debris.

Offline nacnud

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Nice video, and a reasonable interpretation from the VFX alone, but it is not the most efficient way to dock - and the live action doesn't match it.  :)

True, but instantaneous docking would put huge forces through the docking ring. I'd like to see the main engine firing towards the station too as that's the direction the ship is really accelerating. Man I'd love to see the size of the control moment gyros keeping the whole station stable while adding the amount of momentum a ship the size of Rocinante would have ::), and Rocinante is a small ship!

At least the ships docks the right way round for the gravity seen onboard, :)
« Last Edit: 02/04/2017 10:15 AM by nacnud »

Offline Dalhousie

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You have to wonder at the amount of space debris infesting the solar system by then, and the general casualness about generating it.

Space is big, much bigger than we can wrap our minds around. And ships would have radar and other means to detect most debris.

Still, several centuries of that sort of sloppiness, combined with the very high dVs of the spacecraft, and you'd start to worry.
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Offline nacnud

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Well once an object gets more that a couple of km away it gets outside the draw range and it vanishes, right?

/too much kerbal

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Episode 203 was a great one, IMO. Lots of fascinating background and information on the protomolecule & Millers actions, which should clarify a lot of things for non-readers.

Season 2 is moving at a great pace... My only major complaint about season 1 would probably have been pacing. But they hitting their stride now, it seems.

Offline ZachF

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Episode 203 was a great one, IMO. Lots of fascinating background and information on the protomolecule & Millers actions, which should clarify a lot of things for non-readers.

Season 2 is moving at a great pace... My only major complaint about season 1 would probably have been pacing. But they hitting their stride now, it seems.

Production quality on this season is also top-notch, looks more like a movie than a TV show.

Offline Blackstar

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Yeah, I sat there last night watching it and at the end of the episode I said "Wow" out loud--and then realized that I did the same the week before. Without giving away spoilers, I thought that the Miller parts at the end of last week and this week were both incredible hooks. Both times he did/said something surprising with huge ramifications for the rest of the story. And he's turning into a much more strategic and less impulsive character than I thought.

Offline gosnold

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Ep 3 was also paced slower than the first two, and i think it's better that way. It gives better character development and lets the viewer get in the shoes of the characters. I found the first two moved so quick it was hard to follow sometimes.

Offline Oersted

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Yeah, I sat there last night watching it and at the end of the episode I said "Wow" out loud--and then realized that I did the same the week before. Without giving away spoilers, I thought that the Miller parts at the end of last week and this week were both incredible hooks. Both times he did/said something surprising with huge ramifications for the rest of the story. And he's turning into a much more strategic and less impulsive character than I thought.

What Miller does at the end of EP3 really throws a spanner in the works and opens up a whole new deeply chaotic continuation of the story arc.

Offline Blackstar

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Yeah, I sat there last night watching it and at the end of the episode I said "Wow" out loud--and then realized that I did the same the week before. Without giving away spoilers, I thought that the Miller parts at the end of last week and this week were both incredible hooks. Both times he did/said something surprising with huge ramifications for the rest of the story. And he's turning into a much more strategic and less impulsive character than I thought.

What Miller does at the end of EP3 really throws a spanner in the works and opens up a whole new deeply chaotic continuation of the story arc.

Do you mean at the end of Ep2? At the end of Ep3 he explains why he did what he did in Ep2.

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I'm so proud and glad of (our) Kiwi actress getting such a good role as Bobbie Draper in 'The Expanse'. She's come a long way from playing a 'teenage tearaway' on NZ soap 'Shortland Street'. And they let her keep her 'Newzild' accent, too!!

http://diversions.co.nz/bonds-new-girl-frankie-adams/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankie_Adams


« Last Edit: 02/10/2017 01:14 AM by MATTBLAK »
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I'm so proud and glad of (our) Kiwi actress getting such a good role as Bobbie Draper in 'The Expanse'. She's come a long way from playing a 'teenage tearaway' on NZ soap 'Shortland Street'. And they let her keep her 'Newzild' accent, too!!

If you haven't read the books, Bobbie Draper becomes a regular contributor into the Expanse future, and so casting the right person was going to mean a lot.  I think they did pretty good finding someone that can be the soldier that Bobbie Draper is in the books.
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Frankie is 6ft tall, has trained in boxing - she's done some amateur bouts - and has the dramatic chops to do practically anything. I can't wait to see how she works in the role. And in the future, too.
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Offline Oersted

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Do you mean at the end of Ep2? At the end of Ep3 he explains why he did what he did in Ep2.

Yes, I meant EP2. Haven't seen EP3 yet.

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Interesting stuff - they go pretty edgy on this show, don't they? That line from Amos on

[spoiler]
pedophiles almost made me cringe. That guy has some serious hell inside him. I liked his little icebreaker moment drinking with Miller at the bar afterwards, where they seemed to be warming to each other.

That Mormon interstellar colony ship looks pretty cool - I'd have liked to see what its farmlands look like - too bad they're probably going to ram it into that asteroid.

[/spoiler]
« Last Edit: 02/10/2017 11:34 PM by sanman »

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Anybody see the latest episode of The Expanse? One helluva nail-biter.  :-X

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Anybody see the latest episode of The Expanse? One helluva nail-biter.  :-X

After season 1 I started reading all the books, and so I have an appreciation for how well they are moving things along.

And they have to, since books don't translate literally into movies and TV, so usually a lot of compression and merging has to happen.  I'll be interested to see where this season ends up, and suffice it to say interesting things are still to come...
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Offline Oersted

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Anybody see the latest episode of The Expanse? One helluva nail-biter.  :-X

Not to say cliff-hanger!

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Anybody see the latest episode of The Expanse? One helluva nail-biter.  :-X

[I'm going to not include spoilers here, but if you have not watched through episode 3 yet then you cannot complain about spoilers.]

I thought that the ends of ep 2 (Miller does something), ep 3 (Miller explains why he did what he did at the end of ep 2), and ep 4 (well, Miller watches something...) were all great cliffhangers. It has been quite awhile since I watched the end of a show and was immediately annoyed that I'd have to wait another week to see what happens next. "The Expanse" has found exactly the right way to hook me at the end of these episodes. I should probably just stop watching and then binge watch the entire series.




Offline Blackstar

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Interesting stuff - they go pretty edgy on this show, don't they? That line from Amos on


Okay, read this:

http://io9.gizmodo.com/last-nights-expanse-was-more-proof-that-its-the-best-sc-1792172927

The article explains that scene and how they got to including it--when Amos asks his question, Holden was supposed to say something in response. The actors decided that it would be better for Holden to not reply, just sorta be shocked at what Amos was asking. That made it more effective.

The article also discusses Amos some more and his back story. He was very abused as a child and is sort of emotionless, locked down. That's why he behaves like a cold-blooded killer at times, because he doesn't feel anything. It also explains why he was able to figure out the scientist, because the scientist doesn't feel anything either other than his obsession with the data about the protomolecule.

Offline sanman

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I love Amos - he's such a dangerous guy. I liked the interaction between him and Miller -very tense at first, but then they seemed to start warming to each other later on. All the characters are very interesting - Holden in particular seems very "Keanu" ;)

Sent from my SM-N920W8 using Tapatalk


Offline sanman

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Another gripping episode of The Expanse, [spoiler]one which provides a dramatic conclusion to Miller's story arc, it seems. Looks like the Protomolecule will be transforming Venus, then. If it's a terraforming, then the irony would be that only Earthers would be able to take advantage of it anyway.[/spoiler]

Oh well, I'll wait and see.
« Last Edit: 02/24/2017 09:15 AM by sanman »

Offline IRobot

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All the characters are very interesting - Holden in particular seems very "Keanu" ;)
That's not really a compliment...

To me Holden is a miscast. The character is a strong leader, but my gut feeling tells me that in real life he is not, so it is painful to watch him playing a forced role. He also seems a notch down compared with other actors in the show.

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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To me, Holden is a man playing a role anyway. His family told him that he had this responsibility to protect and perpetuate and he's trying to live up to this. However, in many ways, he's painfully naive and is making it up as he goes along based on a completely wrong-headedly optimistic view of humanity and human society.

Jim Holden is a man doing his best despite being utterly out of his moral depth. In that, he is engagingly real. Paladins don't really happen and there is something engaging about seeing a man struggle to be one in a universe that is utterly inimical to one.

I think that they gave us a huge clue to the real Holden in season 1 when his mother told Avarasala that his favourite book was Don Quixote.
« Last Edit: 02/24/2017 02:25 PM by Ben the Space Brit »
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Offline Blackstar

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This has spoilers for the last episode.

http://io9.gizmodo.com/the-expanses-executive-producer-tells-us-everything-tha-1792685368

[My rule of thumb here is that I try not to spoil anything for a week after the air date. If you have not watched it after a week, then you should not have any expectation for not encountering spoilers.]

Online Lars-J

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For those that are curious about the books, book 1 ended where the last episode ended. Next episode we are entering book 2 territory.

Offline sanman

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Saw the latest episode of The Expanse, and once again it was pretty gripping. Heh, I love Amos - he's part puppydog and part junkyard dog.  ;)

[spoiler]
That thing standing over Gunney at the end was pretty surprising and spooky.
Whatever it was looked like some kind of alien, or at least someone who'd been converted by the Protomolecule.

The ship attacking the colony infrastructure above looked like it was advanced human tech, though - but different from previous stealth ships we've seen. Yeah, I always thought those faceplates are quite the glaring vulnerability on the power armor.

[/spoiler]


Offline Oersted

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When will the series continue?

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Season 2 will be 26 episodes, IIRC. The next episode is scheduled for next Wednesday.
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Online RonM

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Season 2 will be 26 episodes, IIRC. The next episode is scheduled for next Wednesday.

Season 2 will be 13 episodes.

Online RonM

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The Expanse has been renewed for a third season. That's 13 more episodes.


http://www.blastr.com/2017-3-16/expanse-renewed-13-episode-third-season-syfy

Online GWH

Season 2 will be 26 episodes, IIRC. The next episode is scheduled for next Wednesday.

Season 2 will be 13 episodes.

Oh yes! I had assumed it would only be 10 and feeling a little preemptive withdrawal after episode 8 being so good.

Offline Blackstar

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I have found this season to be outstanding. The first handful of episodes kept me wanting more, mainly because of cliffhanger endings. But the most recent episodes really went deep in different directions. Last week it was heavy on the politics and psychology. This week it went dark. You got to see just how callous humans could be--not ruthless, just indifferent. I found the most recent episode disturbing.

An impressive show.

Offline sanman

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The scene where they
[spoiler]
ejected the Earth/Mars contingent of the Ganymede refugees into space was pretty chilling - I didn't see that one coming. They sort of reminded me of dying fish as they gave their last gasps in the vacuum. I didn't understand why Holden was being so harsh while interrogating the botanist guy - he looked pretty harmless. Also, Amos seems to be increasingly losing it - I wonder why.

[spoiler]

One thing I like about the show in general are these very imaginative ethnic accents. Alex as an Asian Indian with a Texas drawl from Mars' Marineris Valley just tickles me. And the Patua/Creole of most Belters is also very interesting and original. The latest distinct accent I got came from that Belter politician Dawes as some sort of Singaporean accent. Can anyone else make out any other unconventional accents? After seeing so many sci-fi space shows where the most creative stylistic content was putting apostrophes in the alien names, this playing around with accents feels very innovative and refreshing.


Offline TripD

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Potential spoilage:

I thought Amos's questions about a certain medical procedure were insightful.  They may well play into what seems to be happening to him in these last episodes.

I haven't read the books but since they are already written and are canon to the tv show I am a bit disappointed with one plot point.  The 'world' these characters all live in offers plenty to write about.  There is no reason to throw in aliens.


Spoilage over

Offline Pipcard

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I really need to see this show, but I have one question - if this is supposed to be (mostly) hard science fiction, why are the ships so boxy? Pressure vessels shouldn't have corners.
« Last Edit: 04/06/2017 07:41 PM by Pipcard »

Offline Oersted

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I really need to see this show, but I have one question - if this is supposed to be (mostly) hard science fiction, why are the ships so boxy? Pressure vessels shouldn't have corners.

Have a look at the hitherto only true spaceship made by Humanity: the Apollo Lunar module. Lots of "boxy stuff" attached on the outside of the pressure vessel.

The vessels in the Expanse are also boxy because they don't need to be streamlined.

Offline Pipcard

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I really need to see this show, but I have one question - if this is supposed to be (mostly) hard science fiction, why are the ships so boxy? Pressure vessels shouldn't have corners.

Have a look at the hitherto only true spaceship made by Humanity: the Apollo Lunar module. Lots of "boxy stuff" attached on the outside of the pressure vessel.

The vessels in the Expanse are also boxy because they don't need to be streamlined.
The boxy stuff attached to the Apollo lander's cylindrical pressure vessel housed tanks for propellant, gaseous oxygen, helium, etc. But in this image, for example, an airlock seems to be integrated directly into a blocky structure, implying that the pressure vessel itself is blocky.
« Last Edit: 04/06/2017 08:48 PM by Pipcard »

Offline Blackstar

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I thought Amos's questions about a certain medical procedure were insightful.  They may well play into what seems to be happening to him in these last episodes.

I don't think there was any "may" about it--we've seen enough to know that Amos was psychologically damaged as a child (he has pretty much said that). The result is that he doesn't feel empathy. The scientist had his brain deliberately altered so that he does not feel empathy. I think that Amos was asking about that because he is still somewhat disturbed, and perhaps he was hoping that there was a medical procedure that could remove any of his residual empathy or emotions.

The interesting corollary to this is how Holden is now using that aspect of Amos' personality. He knows that if he tells Amos to beat somebody up, or even to kill him, that Amos will do that without remorse. And the other fascinating aspect is how Naomi fits into that. Naomi has served as Amos' conscience, but Holden is not trying to be his conscience, he's using Holden.

Lots of great character aspects in this series in addition to the overarching story.

Offline Blackstar

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I watched last night's episode on a big screen TV. The scenes around Jupiter were great. Lots of color and detail. Definitely worth watching it on a high resolution big screen.

Offline gosnold

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I watched last night's episode on a big screen TV. The scenes around Jupiter were great. Lots of color and detail. Definitely worth watching it on a high resolution big screen.

Definitely. And if you played a bit of KSP, you'll watch those scenes with an ear-to-ear grin.

Offline Blackstar

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Definitely. And if you played a bit of KSP, you'll watch those scenes with an ear-to-ear grin.

I thought it all happened a bit too fast.

But in previous episodes they managed to establish some of the basic rules about how these drives work: light up the drive and you can be easily detected, leave it off and you probably will not be seen unless somebody knows exactly where to look. There have now been a couple of cases where we've seen how that is used tactically.

Offline zack

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Actually, the producers apologized for the physics in this scene even before the episode was shown.
http://www.danielabraham.com/2017/04/04/guest-post-losing-science-drama-finding-drama-science/
« Last Edit: 04/07/2017 06:55 AM by zack »

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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In the end, The Expanse is not a documentary; scientific accuracy has to take second place to pleasing the audience.
"Oops! I left the silly thing in reverse!" - Duck Dodgers

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Online Lars-J

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Definitely. And if you played a bit of KSP, you'll watch those scenes with an ear-to-ear grin.

I thought it all happened a bit too fast.

I assumed the "gravity assist slingshot" scene was meant to imply some sort of sped up time lapse - but it was clumsily edited.

EDIT: Zack already posted a better explanation, definitely a goof.
« Last Edit: 04/07/2017 06:42 PM by Lars-J »

Online Lars-J

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I really need to see this show, but I have one question - if this is supposed to be (mostly) hard science fiction, why are the ships so boxy? Pressure vessels shouldn't have corners.

If the shape of pressure vessels bother you, this may not be the show for you.  ;) 

No, on a more serious note - the show is not "hard SF" per se... But certainly "harder" and more realistic than any other sci-fi/space opera show in recent memory. I certainly recommend it! So don't expect too much, and enjoy the show.  8)
« Last Edit: 04/07/2017 06:47 PM by Lars-J »

Offline sanman

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Really liked the latest episode of The Expanse ("The Monster and the Rocket") - very good quality episode - definitely worth watching over again, because a lot happens. Liked everything about it - the plot events, the dialogue, the emotions, the atmospherics, and the scene backdrops.

Online Lars-J

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One thing that recently realized which makes the Expanse rather unique, is that it is one of the first SF shows to leave behind the whole "wings in space" idea. There are no winged shuttles. No aerodynamically shaped spaceships.

It is a book series (and universe) that has fully embraced the VTVL approach. Part of that is certainly due to it being 'harder SF', but I think part of it is also because it is one of the first shows produced away from the shadow of the Shuttle program. And I would imagine that the emergence of real life reusable VTVL systems is further cementing that.

Could Sci-Fi entertainment in general about to throw off the shackles of the winged space-plane era?
« Last Edit: 04/14/2017 11:46 PM by Lars-J »

Online Lars-J

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For those techie interested, here is a perspective corrected orthographic cross-section of the Rocinante. (based off a screen shot from an extended preview of the season finale next week)

Looks like the top half of the ship is crew areas (8? decks) and weaponry, and the bottom half is cargo/engineering/propulsion.

It looks neat but the show still makes the typical Sci-Fi mistake of forgetting where propellant goes:D
« Last Edit: 04/15/2017 01:20 AM by Lars-J »

Offline sanman

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Well, they seem to gloss over the issue of power source for these ships. It looks as if they're nuclear-powered, but we never see anything about radiation-related issues -- I assume they're all fusion-powered, and that fission is obsolete. We haven't seen anyone deal with any kind of reactor stuff yet.

It's quasi-hard sci-fi, but it still can't explain to me how that shuttle which lofts Avasarala & Co into orbit has enough propellant supply to actually make orbit. Here's the Martian version of it:






Online Lars-J

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None of the ships have room for propellant. That's my point.  ;) Yes, they are fusion powered. With magical thrust and isp. We can't have everything.  :)

Online yokem55

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None of the ships have room for propellant. That's my point.  ;) Yes, they are fusion powered. With magical thrust and isp. We can't have everything.  :)
The Epstein drive is estimated to deliver an ISP north of 1,000,000 with an exhaust velocity ~4% of C. Yes quite magical. Fortunately the writers use it to enable otherwise conventional Newtonian transit around the system in a reasonable and plot friendly amount of time. Not to mention a sensible gravity solution while in transit.

If you have to have something magical, this isn't a bad element.

Offline sanman

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Heh, so it's sort of the "Iron Man" macguffin - idealized compact power source with ability to make lots of thrust conveniently.

I wonder why we haven't seen any lasers or beam weapons on the show?
In space there's nothing to attenuate such beams, and their near-zero time-of-flight would offer a tremendous advantage in military engagements. I'm surprised the Earth and Mars aren't bristling with orbital fusion-powered laser platforms. Although, to be fair, BSG-reboot never featured them either.

One nice thing about the quasi-hard sci-fi aspect is that we don't have the magical force-field shields trope. Ship crews get riddled with bullets, and there doesn't seem to be any way around that.

Online RonM

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Heh, so it's sort of the "Iron Man" macguffin - idealized compact power source with ability to make lots of thrust conveniently.

I wonder why we haven't seen any lasers or beam weapons on the show?
In space there's nothing to attenuate such beams, and their near-zero time-of-flight would offer a tremendous advantage in military engagements. I'm surprised the Earth and Mars aren't bristling with orbital fusion-powered laser platforms. Although, to be fair, BSG-reboot never featured them either.

One nice thing about the quasi-hard sci-fi aspect is that we don't have the magical force-field shields trope. Ship crews get riddled with bullets, and there doesn't seem to be any way around that.

Lasers produce a lot of waste heat, just like the power plants to operate the lasers, and it's hard to get rid of waste heat in space. I guess the authors picked the missile side of the missiles vs. lasers debate. Big point in deciding what weapons to use in a SF story is how you want to write the battles. Missiles are dramatic, railguns require close combat, and lasers allow long range combat.

Offline sanman

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Here's Scott Manley's critique of the propulsion technology featured in The Expanse:


Online Lars-J

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I guess the authors picked the missile side of the missiles vs. lasers debate. Big point in deciding what weapons to use in a SF story is how you want to write the battles. Missiles are dramatic, railguns require close combat, and lasers allow long range combat.

The irony is of course that the Epstein drive itself would be a formidable weapon... Point it at your enemy, engage full thrust.  8) With that exhaust velocity and thrust, the results would be ... highly energetic.  ;D
« Last Edit: 04/18/2017 04:44 PM by Lars-J »

Offline joncz

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The irony is of course that the Epstein drive itself would be a formidable weapon... Point it at your enemy, engage full thrust.  8) With that exhaust velocity and thrust, the results would be ... highly energetic.  ;D

That's actually mentioned... in the books.


Offline MarsMethanogen

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The irony is of course that the Epstein drive itself would be a formidable weapon... Point it at your enemy, engage full thrust.  8) With that exhaust velocity and thrust, the results would be ... highly energetic.  ;D

That's actually mentioned... in the books.
And interestingly enought, the concept has been used previously; in the 1970s Known Space books by Larry Niven.  Albeit in this case, the fusion drive was used to perform some "quick and dirty" earthwork prior to settlement on another planet in his universe.

Online Lars-J

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And speak of the devil, the Epstein drive does come in handy.  8)

(I haven't read the book for a while, so I do not recall is this plot point was resolved exactly the same way)

A great season finale, IMO. And a great solution to the problem on the ship. I'm certainly looking forward to season 3.

Offline Blackstar

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Yeah, it was great. This was one of several shows that I pretty much watch "live" because I don't want to wait and watch a recording. I liked how there are multiple threads (Earth, Mars, the Belt) that constantly intertwine and converge.


Offline Blackstar

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So there are spoilers in this article. Don't click on it if you care about that:

http://io9.gizmodo.com/the-expanses-ep-on-the-stellar-second-season-and-last-n-1794492348


Offline sanman

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[spoiler]
At various points, I didn't think Holden or Prax were going to make it. I thought one or both of them might end up like Miller did, at the end of Season 1 finale. In Holden's case, I thought they would use the over-pressurization to blow the creature into space, taking him with it. In Prax's case, I thought he'd have allowed the creature to grab him along with the nuke, thus "reuniting" with his daughter. I was even thinking Cotyar would die saving Avasarala.

But it looks like the main sacrifice for the finale was given by the crew of the Arboghast, who suddenly suffered immediate "dissection" for scrutiny by the Protomolecule. (Once those luminous spores began appearing inside their crew compartment, you knew they were about to meet their fate.)

Naomi's reveal about her little gift to Fred Johnson was also a shocker - but where does that leave his rival, Dawes?

[spoiler]

Offline sanman

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Now that's what I call RUD at its most dramatic:


Online Lars-J

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RUD in its most literal form, for sure!  ;D

Offline Blackstar

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"But the show still presents a fundamental dilemma that space enthusiasts have never fully addressed: what if utopia isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?"




http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3225/1

Mars ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids
by Dwayne Day
Monday, April 24, 2017

It isn’t always easy to trace the origin of an idea that inspires a movement. For decades, science fiction stories featured space colonies before the 1970s, when people like Gerard K. O’Neill began to write and talk about space settlement as a feasible idea. But so far, that idea has mostly existed in science fiction, not reality. The SyFy Channel’s The Expanse, which recently completed its second season, has probably done more than any recent form of entertainment to keep alive the concept of space settlement.

The Expanse is based upon the best-selling series of novels by James S.A. Corey (actually a pen name for writers Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck) and is set a few hundred years in the future in a settled solar system where people on Earth, Mars, and in the asteroid belt all maneuver for advantage. It is the closest depiction of what space settlement advocates must see when they dream—and yet it is not a very nice dream. Instead, it is a political drama where Earth, Mars, and the asteroid belt all fight each other. Space settlement is not depicted as a wonderful, liberating and uplifting experience. The residents of the asteroid belt complain about being oppressed by Earth and harassed by Mars. In the second season we were shown more of Mars and its predicament, mostly through the eyes of a Martian Marine. The Martians settled the red planet for the same reason that present day advocates of space settlement say humans should go there: to get independence from Earthly troubles. But the Martians are struggling to make it more livable, and resent that they keep putting more resources into defending Mars than terraforming it. The Martians regard Earth with disdain, an overcrowded, polluted planet filled with slackers. But we see that Earth can still hold an allure for Martians—when they put aside their hate, they can still recognize beauty.

What the show highlights, perhaps unintentionally, is the challenging question of why humanity should spread out beyond Earth at all. That question has always lurked in the background of America’s human space program, and the lack of an answer that convinces more than a tiny group of people is a good reason why, 56 years after Yuri Gagarin’s flight, we still are stuck in low Earth orbit.



« Last Edit: 04/24/2017 09:32 PM by Blackstar »

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Warning - At least one possible spoiler in this post




~*~*~*~




Actually, I think that The Expanse illustrates the need for becoming an interplanetary species very clearly. Population pressures have made Earth a net importer of foodstuffs and later events prove that it is a very fragile basket in which to place all of humanity's eggs.

What The Expanse illustrates very well is that interplanetary expansion is not a quick, easy panacea. There will be political and social problems arising. This is especially the case if the current 'Zero-point-one Percent' culture of certain individuals amassing nearly-unimaginable wealth and power and having a near-sociopathic fixation on amassing yet more, irrespective of the cost to others, remains a dominant driving force in politics and the economy.

As Joe Miller pointed out, if humanity does not change in its basic motivations of avarice and selfishness, "the stars are better off without us".
"Oops! I left the silly thing in reverse!" - Duck Dodgers

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Offline sanman

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Yeah, I hear you - and I hate to be a party-pooper, but there are some things from The Expanse that I don't think would happen in real life.

We'd be using robots/machines a hell of a lot more than people in outer space. Alright, I can accept that Earth might degenerate into a giant Machiavellian dictatorship with little regard for human dignity, but that still wouldn't make sending humans to space to toil under slave labor conditions more economical or effective. Humans would be among the least reliable component in space, especially in large numbers. Robots with AI would be far more suitable as the expendable menial drones to get the dirty/dangerous chores done. So I have a hard time buying the whole Belters thing, even as entertaining as the concept is.

I could buy the idea of humans going to Mars and politically diverging from Earthers in priorities, such as the dream terraforming Mars into another Earth. Perhaps Martians could even come to see themselves as an ethnic group, united around this cause of rehabilitating their planet. But of course the power-balance in that relationship would be lopsidedly tilted towards Earth. Martians would live a precarious existence, at least until they could sufficiently develop the power of robotics to adequately buffer their existence. Until such time, Martians would likely be groveling or being very diplomatic with Earthers, until such time as they could truly outgrow their dependency on them.

What surprises me in The Expanse is that Earth is so polluted in spite of the fact that mankind has harnessed fusion energy as a virtually limitless source of power. In such a world, it should be relatively easy to incinerate all trash/pollution/etc, and keep Mother Earth clean. But I guess the pollustion adds to the cynical dystopian atmosphere of the story.

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