Expanded universes, the exclusive domain of the superfan. This is where those of us sci-fi nerds who can't get enough of their favorite franchises live. It is where you find out that Luke married a Jedi chick named Mara Jade (pre-disney and pre-prequels that is) or what actually happened to Balok and the people of First Federation, or what in the world Shepard Book's backstory in Firefly really was.
Yet, this is where you also get complete lunacy, like Ripley killing a hive mother in single combat without any enhancements or airlocks to blow her out of, or 60 something year Dr. Crusher having child with Captain Picard, or Mon Mothma demilitarizing the New Republic while the Empire was actually still around and still enslaving millions.
So yeah, expanded universes are a mixed bag. In symptom 20 Scott, Corey and the RageMaster attempt to figure out are they good for science fiction and if so, are the canon, or are they just glorified sanctioned fan fiction?
Also, anytime Scott says fan fiction by mistake in this podcast, he means 'expanded universe'.