Last year’s Snowpiercer was somewhat of an unexpected surprise. The Snowpiercer franchise has been around a while now. In 2013 it started as a Korean produced movie starring Chris Evans. However, that was an adaptation of the graphic novel Le Transperceneige by Jacques Lob and Jean-Marc Rochette published in 1982. While I enjoyed the movie, it was not a setting I would have imagined suitable for a series. I discussed this very topic in my review of the first episode. Yet showrunner Josh Friedman has managed to create a thrilling drama with a unique post-apocalyptic setting. Now less than 6 months after the first season ended, we already have season 2, produced in the middle of a pandemic. Starring Jennifer Connelly as Melanie Cavill and Daveed Diggs as Layton the series has just ended it first revolution and counter-revolution. Now, its survivors have to deal with another threat.
Snowpiercer Season 2
That threat is the often-mentioned Mr. Wilford (played by Sean Bean). At the end of season 1 the presume dead Mr. Wilford shows up with a supply train and docks with Snowpiercer. This causes mixed feelings amongst the survivors of the train. Melanie dreads his returns, mentioning Wilford’s socio-pathetic tendencies. Yet, for many Wilford will bring salvations after the revolt of the taillies under the leadership of Layton. And so in the first three episodes we find that the wounds made by the revolution just won’t heal. Continued violence brings more mystery as new power players try to get in on the action. I must admit that I do not remember all of the subplots from the first season 1 so some of the underhand dealings I have seen do not mean much to me. What is clear is that the arrival of the supply train brings unforeseen personal dynamics.
As the setting of the series is limited, it basically takes place on a one-dimensional train any enlargement of the setting transforms the series. Season 2 of Snowpiercer introduces a number of new characters, but the two that are most important as Mr. Wilford and Melanie’s daughter Alexandra. I assumed Alex would be a hostage of Mr. Wilford, to be used against Melanie whenever he pleases. Although there is a little bit of that there is much more. Alex has developed a personal dislike for her mother but in the first three episodes of this season it has become obvious there are similarities between them. Meanwhile Mr. Wilford’s sociopathic tendencies are on display but he is capable of keeping the under control. In one episode Melanie questions why, others cannot see the danger he poses. The answer is quite simple, most people are more like Wilford than they know.
Mr. Wilford’s manipulation have remained subtle for now. As he is stranded on his supply train he cannot now overplay his hand. He appears quite content to let the simmering civil war onboard Snowpiercer take its toll. His chances of taking control have improved considerably since Melanie has just departed the train to check out a research station along its tracks. Just when you thought you got a handle on the series it changes its dynamics. Snowpiercer is never meant to be a series that lasts seven seasons. If they can make it to four I would both surprised and pleased. I rather have a high-concept series that continuously changes its setting and characters than a series attempting to stay within the limits of its confines. Snowpiercer season 2 is also set to run for 10 episodes and will finish in late March.
I hope you enjoyed this review of Snowpiercer. I know it is rather brief, but I thought I would take my return to writing posts slowly. Don’t forget to hit the subscribe button on the right if you have not done so already!