If you are looking for a futuristic series with space scenarios filled with intrigue and conspiracy, The Expanse is the perfect show for you.
Created by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, this thriller is based on a literary collection of the same name and is set in the period when humanity has colonised the Solar System.
The story begins 200 years in the future when a woman's disappearance leads a hardened detective (Thomas Jane) and the rogue captain of a spaceship (Steven Strait) to work together.
They enter a race to uncover a conspiracy that may be the biggest and most dangerous in human history.
Slowly, they find the secrets behind the organisation and discover a much larger web of lies than they expect, involving several influential people who go entirely against society.
If you are a fan of this type of series, we have compiled a list of shows like The Expanse that we believe you will enjoy.
In an alternate future where we imagine ourselves exploring the universe more successfully, you can expect adventure, space racing, androids, survival of the human race and much more.
And, as always, if you think we've missed any gems off our list, let us know in the comments below!
OUR LIST OF SHOWS LIKE THE EXPANSE
How Long Does The Expanse Last?
The Expanse premiered via streaming in December 2015 and recently became available on Netflix.
Before the release of season five, the show was renewed for a sixth and final season in November 2020.
The series has gained critical acclaim with six seasons and 62 episodes, with special praise for its visual effects, character development and political narrative.
It received a Hugo Award for Best Drama Presentation and three Saturn Awards nominations for Best Science Fiction Television Series.
Why Was The Expanse Cancelled?
For the fans of The Expanse, it seemed like this show could last forever. Based on the book series by James S A Corey, the sci-fi drama took over people's hearts worldwide.
When cancellation was announced in 2020, writers Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck referred to the show's end as a “pause”.
However, showrunner Naren Shankar said the main reason for the series ending was financial considerations.
This was also why the sixth season was reduced from ten to six episodes.
As disappointing as this cancellation is, fans took comfort in knowing that there is at least a natural ending point to the climax of the sixth book, which is where season six ends.
This is also due to the fact that book seven, Persepolis Rising, takes place after a 30-year jump, meaning that for a potential seventh season, it would be necessary to age every character.
While it's nice that the sixth season naturally concludes the story without feeling too forced or sudden, there's still plenty of source material to cover in the books.
There is at least some room for The Expanse to pull off another miracle and come back for a seventh season.
Where Is The Expanse Filmed?
The Expanse is one of the most visually rich sci-fi series.
The premise follows a group of anti-heroes who unintentionally find themselves caught in the middle of a conspiracy, a class imbalance, and humanity's very survival.
With Earth and Mars constantly on the brink of war, much of the focus shifts between the two places. The show is a visual delight with so many planets and space travel.
Sure, we are still some time away from actually filming in space, so all seasons of The Expanse have been shot in Toronto and Oshawa in Ontario, Canada.
In fact, the last season used pretty much the exact filming locations as previous ones while adding a few new locations to portray different places just as the space adventure grew.
The story has three dominant planets Earth, Mars and Ilus. Earth was filmed in Downtown Toronto, with several buildings used as settings, namely Experience Estates in Caledon East and even Toronto City Hall.
On the other hand, the realistic images of Mars were recorded at the Pinewood Studios, in a gravel car park near the sound stages, where inflatable green screens were used to portray the Martian landscape.
Finally, the new planet Ilus was filmed in an active quarry near Toronto and described as haunting, strange, and supernatural.
The scenes filmed did not pass visual effects editing, and the whole experience is delightfully impressive, looking realistic thanks to the natural lighting, or lack of it.
Naturally, with a series like this, green screens and CGI are mandatory, so Pinewood Studios in Port Lands, Toronto, was used to film a few scenes in The Expanse.
The Expanse Cast
With six seasons there are a lot of cast members in The Expanse.
Naturally, some come and go over the seasons but there are some that stay the test of time…
Thomas Jane as Joe Miller/The Investigator, a Belter detective on Ceres assigned to find Julie Mao
Steven Strait as James Holden, the Earther executive officer on the Canterbury, later the captain of the Rocinante
Cas Anvar as Alex Kamal, the Martian pilot of the Canterbury
Dominique Tipper as Naomi Nagata, a Belter engineer of the Canterbury
Wes Chatham as Amos Burton, an Earther mechanic of the Canterbury, originally from Baltimore
Paulo Costanzo as Shed Garvey, the Canterbury's medical technician
Florence Faivre as Julie Andromeda Mao, the missing daughter of business tycoon Jules-Pierre Mao
Shawn Doyle as Sadavir Errinwright, UN Undersecretary of Executive Administration
Shohreh Aghdashloo as Chrisjen Avasarala, UN Deputy Undersecretary of Executive Administration
Frankie Adams as Bobbie W. Draper, an MMC (Martian Marine Corps) gunnery sergeant
Cara Gee as Camina Drummer, Tycho Station's Belter head of security
Keon Alexander as Marco Inaros, a Belter faction leader, later head of the Free Navy
Jasai Chase-Owens as Filip Inaros, Marco and Naomi's son
Nadine Nicole as Clarissa Melpomene Mao, Jules-Pierre Mao's elder daughter who initially seeks revenge against Holden