Why Alex was killed off on The Expanse

The Expanse Season 5 -- Courtesy of Amazon Studios
The Expanse Season 5 -- Courtesy of Amazon Studios /

While The Expanse has had plenty of shocking deaths and twists over its six seasons, one that left many fans feeling confused was the death of Alex Kamal (Cas Anvar) during the show’s season 5 finale. Alex was an integral part of the Rocinante crew during the show’s first five seasons, the faithful pilot with a Martian cowboy drawl who brought comic relief and served as the crew’s resident chef. During the season 5 finale, “Nemesis Games,” Alex pulls a high gravity maneuver with a racing spaceship in order to save Naomi (Dominique Tipper) from drifting off into space. As a result of the extreme drug cocktail he had to pump into his system to pull it off, he has a stroke and dies.

It’s a heroic death to be sure, but considering that Alex doesn’t die in the books during this event and that the moment feels surprisingly anti-climactic for the character, it left many fans wondering if there was some other reason that the pilot was killed off.

As it turns out, there was a behind-the-scenes reason, and it was pretty horrible. Sometimes decisions must be made in show business that have nothing to do with the story itself…and unfortunately, the choice to kill off Alex was one of them.

Why did they kill Alex on The Expanse?

Ultimately, the decision to kill off Alex Kamal had little to do with the character or the overarching tale of The Expanse and everything to do with the actor who portrayed him, Cas Anvar. In June 2020, while the show was deep into production on its fifth season, a number of people came forward to accuse Anvar of sexual misconduct. The actor was accused of pressuring numerous people for sex (including at least one minor), sexual assault, repeatedly harassing people at conventions and online, and a number of other heinous acts. He also encouraged his fanbase to go after those who spoke out against him, cultivating a despicable pattern of abusive behavior. The list of allegations against Anvar is too long to list here (though you can find a full recounting in this comprehensive Reddit thread), but suffice it to say that his behavior was in gross juxtaposition to the inclusive values of The Expanse.

After the allegations came to light, the show’s producer Alcon Studios initiated a third party investigation into Anvar. The results were not made public, but were seemingly enough to conclude that the actor should no longer be allowed to work on the show.

Despite Alex’s important role in The Expanse, there can be no doubt that the right decision was made here. The team behind The Expanse had to do the best they could with a very difficult situation, and allowing Anvar to remain on the show was just not an option. If anything, the show was lucky that it was able to tie everything off as well as it did.

All six seasons of The Expanse are currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

Next. The Expanse producers “would love” to continue the show. dark

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