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SYFY WIRE The Expanse

The Expanse's fourth season goes through the Gate with NYCC premiere

By Jacob Oller

The Expanse, the fan-favorite James S. A. Corey adaptation, has plenty more space-faring adventures to share with its audience on Amazon. Now, thanks to the show's New York Comic Con panel, we've gotten to see the first glimpse of what the show looks like on the streaming service since it debuted its fourth season premiere.

While the crew of the Rocinante will already be back for a fifth season, the here and now is focused on new planets, new resources, and newly opened Ring Gates. The first episode of the new season (entitled "New Terra," directed by Breck Eisner, and written by showrunning team Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby) was all about getting to Ilus.

Showing off new characters like Burn Gorman's RCE officer, the premiere is all about the crew of the Rocinante making their way to Ilus in order to check on a settlement of Belter refugees. With gorgeous VFX and production design that's as good as ever, the show dives deep into expanding (ha!) the universe. Naomi Nagata (Dominique Tipper) has one of the bigger arcs of the series, as she prepares to land on the surface — a tough ask for a Belter. Then, as RCE and more attempt to go through the Gate and land on New Terra, tragedy strikes.

One of the best sequences of the episode is a crash landing caused by a mysterious alien force. Something is making things very, very dangerous for those attempting to find a new home. Setting up plenty of mysteries and getting Holden, Naomi, Amos, and Alex all set up on a new planet ... well, things are getting very exciting as Amazon kicks off a new run of The Expanse.

After the premiere, showrunners Naren Shankar, Mark Fergus, and Hawk Ostby spoke on a panel alongside cast members Steven Strait, Cas Anvar, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Wes Chatham, Burn Gorman, and Dominque Tipper — ad teased vague but exciting things to come (like plenty of swearing and nudity). "You get to see a lot more Amos" this season, said Chatham.

Strait mentioned that using sci-fi "allegorically" was one of his favorite things about the genre, while Shankar was hopeful that his show could hold up with and be as influential to those in the future as Star Trek was to him. The showrunner explained that the "European invasion of America" was a thematic touchstone for the fourth season — something that the multiple waves of landing crews on Ilus made clear. Finally, The Expanse panel wrapped up with a sizzle reel giving a sneak peek at the rest of the season.

The Expanse hits Amazon on Dec. 13.

Click here for SYFY WIRE’s full coverage of New York Comic Con 2019, including up-to-the-minute news, exclusive interviews, and videos.