TL;DR – An episode that moves everybody and more importantly everything into place
Exodus Review –
To be honest, 2020 has not been the best of years, and that might be an understatement. However, there was one ray of light on the horizon for me, and that was a new season of The Expanse, and well now it is here, it has so far not disappointed.
So to set the scene, it has been about 100+ days since the end of Season 4 and all the drama that happened on Ilus. In that time the crew of the Rocinante, James Holden (Steven Strait), Naomi Nagata (Dominique Tipper), Amos Burton (Wes Chatham), and Alex Kamal (Cas Anvar) have made their way to Tyco Station for refit and repair. Only it is time for reflection, and for many, it is time to close some personal demons. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
One of the things I do appreciate about this episode is the efficient storytelling that they use to move the plot along. This episode has to do a lot of heavy lifting character and plot-wise, so you need to be judicious in what you showed. For example, the primary emotional goodbye for the episode was between Naomi and James, so you didn’t need to go through repeating the same motion with both Amos and Alex and can just say that they have already left. Also, you need to have Filip (Jasai Chase-Owens) have actual blood on his hands and show he will leave his own people behind if he has to, in the books that happens when they steal the stealth fibres, but that was more of a Bobbie (Frankie Adams) moment last season. So instead they re-package this into the opening of the season that ticks all those boxes while also reinforcing the asteroids, and giving a little push for Chrisjen (Shohreh Aghdashloo) later in the episode.
Also, while this is an episode that has to set up a lot of crucial plot elements, the show takes time to have these sweeping vistas that take your breath away. The first of these is at the start when we get a pan across the outside of Tyco Station and our first look at the interior. This was both beautiful but also important for a critical plot element coming up. We then had Amos landing on Luna, and we see the stunning Lovell City, and when he leaves, we see the Augustin Gamarra Memorial to remind us of someone else’s past. The final moment was when Alex finally noticed that all was not well with Mars, which was punctuated by Clinton Shorter’s sad version of the central Expanse theme.
Another thing it had to do was contain some of the fans most anticipated scenes, the first of which was Amos in the shower with some goons. I liked that they gave you the impression that we were not actually going to see the fight and just the aftermath before doing the full reveal of why you should never attack Amos Burton. The next of course, was Amos and Chrissy, and just wow, it was everything I hoped it would be.
In the end, do we recommend Exodus? Absolutely. This episode was a strong opener that had to do a lot of heavy lifting and succeed at every turn. Bring on the next episode.
By Brian MacNamara: You can follow Brian on Twitter Here, when he’s not chatting about Movies and TV, he’ll be talking about International Relations, or the Solar System.
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Credits – All images were created by the cast, crew, and production companies of The Expanse
Directed by – Breck Eisner
Written by – Naren Shankar
Created by – Mark Fergus & Hawk Ostby
Based on – The Expanse by James S. A. Corey (Ty Franck & Daniel Abraham)
Production/Distribution Companies – Alcon Entertainment & Amazon Studios
Starring – Steven Strait, Cas Anvar, Dominique Tipper, Wes Chatham, Frankie Adams, Cara Gee, Keon Alexander, Jasai Chase-Owens & Shohreh Aghdashloo with José Zúñiga, Michael Irby, Brent Sexton, Anna Hopkins, Bahia Watson, Olunike Adeliyi, George Tchortov, Lyndie Greenwood & Chad L. Coleman