"The Expanse", an American mystery science-fiction drama, is all set to debut on Syfy on 14 December, 2015. Based on the series of novels by James SA Corey, the story of this show is set in the future where humanity has colonised the solar system and revolves around police detective Miller, who is born in the asteroid belt and is given the assignment to find a missing young woman, Julie Mao.
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The official synopsis of episode 1, titled "Dulcinea", reads: "The series opens with Julie Mao aboard an abandoned spaceship. On the dwarf planet Ceres, police detective Miller is tasked with finding Mao and returning her to her rich parents on Luna. In New York, UN executive Chrisjen Avasarala interrogates a captured operative of the OPA, a Belter militant group, about contraband stealth technology. Underway to Ceres, the ice carrier Canterbury receives a distress signal from the freighter Scopuli, and executive officer Jim Holden is ordered to lead a rescue mission with the ship's engineer Naomi Nagata, the mechanic Amos Burton, the pilot Alex Kamal, and the medic Shed Garvey. They find the ship empty but for a distress transmitter, but as their shuttle heads back to the Canterbury, a stealthed ship destroys the ice carrier with nuclear torpedoes."
This is what critics had to say about this newest science-fiction drama:
IGN: The Expanse is recommended viewing for just about anyone looking for a science fiction world that they can sink their teeth into. The series premiere is filled with enough content to build the world substantially and delivers an intriguing mystery.
Variety: In a TV universe in which dozens of dramas are creating deeply memorable characters and mining their own allegories with exceptional skill, "The Expanse's" sparks of life may not be enough to power it into must-see territory. To be more certain of survival in this unforgiving atmosphere, this middling space saga will have to reach a higher orbit, and quickly.
The Hollywood Reporter: Syfy is trying to dive back into the space race, and The Expanse, with its many-volumed origins, has epic aims, the likes of which TV hasn't seen for a while, and generosity mandates it be allowed to unfold its story at its own rate. Maybe the rote space-noir, vessel-in-peril and dying-Earth narratives will gel into something unique. Maybe the ideology will add a different twist on the "colonizers versus colonized"/"workers versus corporations" binaries. It's not there yet.
We Have Got This Covered: The Expanse as a TV show may not be as revolutionary and nuanced as top-tier golden-age TV, but it makes a big, bold crater in the category it falls in. That of actual, hard science fiction, where the repercussions for high-gravitational environments are tangible and the simple act of redirecting a space ship is its own set-piece; within that genre, it's essentially perfect.
The New York Times: It's all a little too smooth and unexceptional, though--nothing in the central performances, the writing, the action or the computer effects goes beyond proficient, and nothing has the stark, strange, sometimes brutal feeling that made "Battlestar Galactica" compelling. For Syfy, the search goes on.
Forbes: The Expanse is probably the best version of a massive, world building space opera we've gotten on television since Battlestar, but a genuinely amazing series it is not. Is it competent? Sure, to a point. Will it speak in great lengths to the kind of audiences that are naturally drawn to this sort of material? Very likely. Is it going to be the Game of Thrones of sci-fi television that turns laymen viewers into space junkies? The odds are not in the favor of such an outcome.
"The Expanse" premieres with its pilot episode on Syfy on 14 December, 2015, at 10pm.