The Expanse just wrapped up its fifth season and did so by delivering a huge, huge shocker. The show killed off Alex Kamal, one of the series’ primary characters, and a character who in the books never dies at all. Up til now The Expanse TV series has been faithful to the books, but this deviation is a huge change and one that requires an explanation.
Why did The Expanse just kill off Alex? The answer has nothing at all to do with story and everything to do with real world accusations against the actor who played him: Cas Anvar.
Back in June of 2020, Cas Anvar become embroiled in #MeToo controversy with several women coming forward to accuse him of sexually inappropriate behavior. The allegations cross a range from pushy messages, to sexual assault, to inappropriate behavior with underage girls.
The initial allegation against The Expanse’s star started with a now deleted tweet. Following that tweet more allegations against Cas Anvar followed. These included what appeared to be a text exchange (though it’s worth noting this is something that COULD be easily photoshopped, though that does not appear to be the case here) which looks like this…
There were other numerous allegations being thrown out after the first one. None of them were ever verified and almost all of them seemed to come from pretty random Twitter accounts. The Expanse’s Cas Anvar never responded to any of the allegations himself.
However, The Expanse production team took the accusations against the actor they’d chosen to portray Alex seriously. Here’s The Expanse season 5’s producer Daniel Abraham explaining what the production did in response…
The results of the production’s investigation into Cas Anvar were never announced, but given that they just killed off Alex Kamal out of nowhere even though it made no sense in the story, you can draw your own conclusions.
Originally Alex was supposed to survive The Expanse season 5 and in fact the show had already finished shooting all of Cas Anvar’s scenes when the accusations against him became news. That is almost certainly why Alex’s death is so abrupt in the season 5 finale. It’s likely that the scene was added after filming was already done. We see him with his nose bleeding and then only later, with Alex off-camera, do we learn he died of a stroke.
The Expanse has one season left before its done and Alex was supposed to play a pivotal role in everything that happens next. Thanks to Cas Anvar’s excellent performance, Alex was also one of the most popular and beloved characters in the series. It’s hard to imagine how they’ll go on without him, but go on they will.