Now that The Expanse has charted a course for Amazon Prime after being canceled by SYFY midway through the third season, showrunner Naren Shankar explains what viewers can expect as the series moves from cable to streaming. Season 3 was something of a bumpy ride for fans as news of the cancellation was soon met with a sizable fan campaign, calling on Amazon to save the show. In addition to the online and social media presence, the campaign included a banner being flown over Amazon Studio’s California HQ. In the end, Jeff Bezos and the powers that be at the company listened.
As such, The Expanse’s presence at Comic-Con 2018 was one of excitement and gratitude, as the cast and crew from the series took time out to thank devoted fans for their efforts in saving the show. They even put together a charming video expressing their heartfelt thanks, while also stating: “The best is yet to come.”
As reported by Indiewire, Shankar spoke about what’s in store for The Expanse, both in terms of where the story is headed now that the ring gate has opened the doors for humanity to venture into the farthest reaches of space, and how the shift from cable network to deep-pocketed streaming service will alter the series, presumably for the better. To begin, Shankar said that season 4 will take the story into the next big portion of the books, which extends well beyond the confines of the solar system that’s been the show’s vast playground for the past three years. Shankar said:
“We’re in the second big movement in the books … a new chapter in humanity. We’re no longer constrained in the solar system. It’s how humanity deals with this vast new frontier.”
As far as the question that’s probably on most viewers’ minds: yes, it sounds as though The Expanse plans to take full advantage of Amazon’s lack of content restrictions and commercials. According to Shankar, that means no more dubbing over mature language or censoring certain scenes that would otherwise be a red flag for network censors.
“It’s going to be more awesome. We no longer have the language restrictions. [We can] curse like a sailor. We don’t have the nudity restrictions… and the 4K and HDR will look amazing on Amazon. We’re no longer constrained by a 43-minute box. We can put some air into it, let things breathe a little bit more. So we’re excited to be on Amazon Prime.”
“More awesome” certainly has a nice ring to it, as does the promise of a more refined picture and, should the material call for it, longer episodes. From what Shankar is describing, it sounds as though The Expanse’s big move to Amazon Prime will be more significant than simply finding a new home.
The Expanse season 4 is expected sometime in 2019 on Amazon Prime Video.