There’s nothing sci-fi fans love more than a hidden Easter Egg and The Expanse has definitely delivered on that front, with viewers spotting references to both Doctor Who and Game of Thrones in season five’s fifth episode.
In a post on Reddit, one eagle-eyed viewer spotted a certain Time Lord in United Nations member Chrisjen Avasarala’s (Shohreh Aghdashloo) phone.
“Has anyone noticed that Chrisjen Avasarala seems to have Doctor Who on speed dial?” one user wrote alongside a shot from a season five episode which shows the politician’s phone and a list of contacts, including “Who, Dr.”
Another user quickly spotted “Clegane, G” – most likely a reference to Game of Thrones character Gregor Clegane, also known as The Mountain, while another reckoned “Banks, V” could be a Fresh Prince of Bel-Air related Easter Egg, referencing Aunt Vivian.
As for why all these characters made a brief cameo in The Expanse, one viewer pointed out that all the names referenced were recast throughout the course of their respective shows.
“Omg. All of the names on that list are characters that were recast! Dr Who, Clegane, Aunt Viv, and Arjun!” user Chahk wrote, referring to The Expanse’s Arjun Avasarala who was initially portrayed by Brian George before Michael Benyaer took over the role in season four.
The Doctor has famously seen multiple recasts due to the character’s regenerations, with Jodie Whittaker being the latest actor to take on the role, while Game of Thrones’ Gregor Clegane was played by three different actors throughout the show’s run: Conan Stevens, Ian Whyte and Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson.
Similarly, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’s Vivian Banks was played by Janet Hubert before being recast in season four, with Daphne Maxwell Reid taking on the role.
The Expanse, which originally aired on Syfy before being picked up by Amazon for series four and five, follows a band of antiheroes in a dystopian future where humanity has colonised the Solar System.
The show’s fifth season, is premiered on 16th December, is currently releasing episodes on a weekly basis on Amazon Prime Video.