This Friday will mark the official end of The Season 6 Expansion, with the sixth episode of the last season on Amazon Prime Video. The finale appears to be wrapping up the ‘Free Navy’ arc, a story that has been in motion since the Season 4 finale.
The thing is, I’m not entirely convinced that this is the end of The Expanse (one of the best amazon prime video shows). The show has already survived cancellation once, after Syfy unceremoniously scrapped it at the end of its third season, and I suspect something similar will happen now.
That’s not just wishful thinking of mine either. Showrunner Naren Shankar said THAT ONE that there is still room to tell more Expanse stories. Which makes sense. After all, The Expanse book series is nine books (and eight novels), while the TV series only seems to go as far as book 6: Babylon’s Ashes.
And that has been reflected in Season 6, with the show acting like it intends to continue well past Friday’s finale. The show has even started laying the groundwork for adaptations of the last three novels. There have been teases and hints in past seasons, but season 6 has taken it to the extreme.
There are more stories for The Expanse to tell
Anyone who hasn’t read the Expanse books yet will probably be confused about the side plot featuring Cara, the young girl who lives on the planet Laconia. His story has no relevance to the rest of the show and the threat of the Free Navy, after all.
Without spoiling anything, Cara becomes very important later on, and these snippets of her life in Laconia are absolutely crucial to that. In other words, The Expanse is already setting up future stories, even if the series itself is coming to an end.
That’s why I suspect this isn’t really the end.
The Expanse have been pretty good at adapting their source material. It hasn’t been entirely faithful, for one reason or another, but overall the series has done a good job of condensing the first six books (and relevant novels) and adapting them to the small screen.
Without spoiling what’s likely to come in the finale, it makes a bit of sense that The Expanse, in its current form, would end here. Babylon’s Ashes ended in such a way that the show can end there, offering strong conclusions to the ongoing plot without leaving any significant cliffhangers.
That said, there are still three books to adapt, and those books cover the mysteries of The Expanse universe in much more detail. Mysteries that the shows have only touched on, like the mysterious beings that live inside the ring doors, and are only visible to James Holden.
And of course Laconia plays a very important role in the last three books. So big that I really can’t go into too many details without giving away potential spoilers. Needless to say, Cara’s story is very important, even if it just seems like a confusing addition to the current arc.
What form would Expanse 2.0 (or Expanse season 7?) take?
The only question is, what would more Expanse look like? The most logical option would be to jump in and develop the stories as seasons seven through nine. It would make Amazon look a bit silly for declaring that season six would be the last, but it’s not like fans were that outraged. And it means we could (hopefully) keep the same cast fans know and love for a few more years, if they’re willing.
Alternatively, there is always room for spin-offs. Amazon has already shown that it’s not against this course of action, as The Boys already has two different spin-offs in development. Certainly, some changes would have to be made and new characters introduced to replace the outgoing Rocinante team. However, it would mean being able to wrap up the entire saga, somehow, and deliver a real conclusion the way the creators of The Expanse envisioned it.
On the other hand, who says it would have to be a television series? I wouldn’t mind seeing an Expanse movie, and space action usually looks pretty amazing on the big screen. Heck, I’d settle for a streaming-only movie instead. After all, if Amazon can release a potential blockbuster like The Tomorrow War, it might go all out and greenlight an Expanse movie (or movies).
Also, while Amazon has picked up a bunch of theatrical releases that were affected by the pandemic, there aren’t many “made for Prime” movies out there. Certainly not in the same league as Netflix. Expansion movies wouldn’t be such a terrible way to reinvigorate that momentum.
If season 6 really is the end of The Expanse, it wouldn’t be the worst way to go. The conclusion of Babylon’s Ashes was a turning point for the series, and events unfold in such a way that the show can (and hopefully will) deliver a satisfying conclusion to all major plot threads. So we’re not going to end up in a Deadwood situation, with a cliffhanger ending that has to be resolved in a TV movie.
But The Expanse has been a hit with audiences and critics alike, with seasons 3, 4 and 5 still scoring 100% on rotten tomatoes. It wouldn’t be a huge surprise if we got more stories from the universe at some point in the future. After all, if a show with an ending as maligned as Dexter can come back for more, then anything is possible.
Also, as book readers will already know, a gap of several years between season 6 and what’s coming could work in the show’s favor. No matter what happens, the door will always be open. We just need someone willing to go through it.
In other broadcast news, Netflix just raised prices at all levels. On Hulu, we’ve got all the details on how to watch how i met your father online. Also, we have a Advice all Fire TV owners should listen to to make the most of your home screen.