The Expanse

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The Expanse is a book and TV series written by James S. A. Corey and aired by SyFy.


The series chiefly follows the crew of the Rocinante in a future where humans have managed to explore and settle the Solar System using semi-realistic fusion drives.

Transhumanist Elements

  • Space exploration and colonisation is a key element of the series which is portrayed with considerable accuracy with respect to our current understanding of physics
  • Prosthetics - both mechanical but full limb regeneration is also around
  • Various implants - 'Belters' who grow up in low-G environments often suffer from various medical consideration, so typically have various implants to compensate.
  • Drugs for:
    • Extreme environments such as high G-force or visiting a world with a high G-force than you grew up with
    • Nootropics drugs to enhance mental cognition in extreme situations
    • Emergency panic suppression
  • Longevity - mentioned during the first season when a man mentions that "The life expectancy on earth is 120 years, do you know what it is on Ceres? 68."
  • A bionic eye or smart contact lenses are used for spying
  • Cryonics - Is features several time for storing bodies, it's uncertain whether it's ever used as a form or emergency medicine with revival options however
  • Multi-parent families - The main protagonist has eight parents
  • Moral enhancement, uh un-enhancement? - transcranial direct-current stimulation was used to erase some character's empathy to allow them to better perform unethical experiments for a perceived greater good

Evolution tropes

The series features an alien 'proto molecule' organism which attracts endless amoral investors and collaborators to unethically use it in a series of politically destabilising experiments across the solar system. The arguably transhumanist technology is presented as dangerous, with the protagonists initially on a journey to track it down and contain it entirely.

Common straw transhumanist tropes are advocated by the antagonists such as wanting to 'become gods', preparing for the 'next phase of human evolution'. This includes the mass murder and experimentation of a remote colony of 100,000 people as well as a programme to transform children into radically transformed alien-like creatures.

Their positive transhumanist ideas advocated includes radical adaptation to alien environments such as existing in a hard vacuum or other inhospitable environment, however this is portrayed in an entirely antagonistic and unethical fashion.

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