How Camina Drummer Became The True Hero Of The Expanse Season 6

How Camina Drummer Became The True Hero Of The Expanse Season 6

Traditional wisdom dictates Holden, Naomi and Amos are The Expanse’s lead protagonists, but Cara Gee’s Camina Drummer has become season 6’s true hero.

The true hero of The Expanse season 6 may not be the character you think – here’s how Camina Drummer evolved into the Amazon Prime series’ focal figure. Despite following James S.A. Corey’s original books for the most part, The Expanse’s TV adaptation has engineered a few sizable tweaks to the source material’s roster of characters. Perhaps the most significant involves Cara Gee’s Camina Drummer – a Belter introduced in The Expanse season 2 as Fred Johnson’s right-hand woman. Incorporating elements of literary Drummer, Samara (the Naomi connection), Bull (season 3’s spinal injury), and Michio Pa (rebelling against the Free Navy), Cara Gee portrays a live-action mashup of book entities.

And as a blended character, The Expanse’s Drummer has been asked to wear different sci-fi hats throughout the seasons. She evolved from Fred’s assistant to captain of the Behemoth (now known as Medina Station), and was among the first to recognize Marco Inaros as a potential problem. In a roller coaster season 5, Camina founded a polyamorous pirate crew, briefly joined Marco Inaros, then dramatically rebelled against the Free Navy, splitting her crew in the process. Drummer remained among The Expanse’s secondary protagonists throughout, ranking behind the Rocinante crew, Bobbie Draper, and probably even Avasarala in terms of narrative importanceā€¦ but that’s no longer the case in The Expanse season 6.

Opposing Marco Inaros, Drummer currently finds herself aligned with the Rocinante, as well as the united forces of Earth and Mars. Her small crew becomes a safe haven for Belters who don’t find life under Marco’s iron fist an appealing prospect, but while Drummer is fighting the same fight as Holden, Naomi and Amos, she’s overtaken The Expanse’s main trio as a hero to root for. Because where the Roci gang are driven by duty in The Expanse season 6, Drummer’s motivations run deep in her veins and weigh heavy upon her heart.

How Camina Drummer Became The True Hero Of The Expanse Season 6
How Camina Drummer Became The True Hero Of The Expanse Season 6

By crusading against Marco Inaros, Camina Drummer is redefining what it means to be Beltalowda. She knowingly risked her family unit to stand against the Free Navy, losing all but two of her lovers. Branded a traitor and lapdog of the Inners, Drummer’s remaining followers took another massive leap of faith shaking hands with Golden Bough, then launched a direct attack against one of Marco’s depots, during which poor Josep brutally lost an arm. Whereas Holden’s Rocinante crew are compelled to fight by moral obligation and necessity (or in Amos’ case, money), Drummer has far more to lose by waging war. Yet with every blow she takes, Drummer stands up stronger each time, culminating in The Expanse season 6, episode 4 (“Redoubt”) where Josep’s gruesomely amateurish amputation inspires Captain Drummer to bravely declare open opposition against the Free Navy. Carrying the hopes of every Belter who simply wants to live in peace, Camina is left with no choice but to forge ahead, whatever the consequences.

Underpinning these political factors, a series of deeply emotional traumas burn a heroic fire within Drummer’s well-guarded heart. Love for Naomi compels Drummer to punish the man who wronged her, whilst also protecting the Rocinante wherever possible. The deaths of Fred Johnson and Klaes Ashford (both by Marco Inaros’ hand) add a generous dollop of revenge. And, of course, Drummer’s decision to spare Marco’s life in The Expanse season 4 has aged spectacularly badly, meaning there’s surely some guilt lingering in the back of her mind. According to storytelling conventions, Holden, Naomi and Amos are The Expanse’s central heroes. But Drummer brings the most powerful motivations, has the bigger personal stake, and is making the more decisive strategic moves.

Drummer’s season 6 ascension shows The Expanse defying protagonist stereotypes. Back when uncovering the Protomolecule conspiracy was top priority, James Holden served as The Expanse’s main hero, since he was the man unwillingly dragged into the mess, and no one else recognized the Protomolecule’s true threat. As the landscape shifted, The Expanse season 5 painted Dominique Tipper’s Naomi Nagata as the lead protagonist, now season 6 is moving that title onto Camina Drummer. Precious few TV shows pass around the “main hero” crown to whomever fits the story best, but The Expanse is doing exactly thatā€¦ And the final season unquestionably belongs to Drummer.


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