As Snowpiercer digs its heels deeper into the deep dive of class structure, racism and capitalism, the train itself starts to show signs that maybe it’s not ready to run forever as Melanie claims it is. When a bad engine gives out, only Melanie can fix it and she’s determined to do so before the train derails and everyone on board dies. However, Layton, who is freshly out of the drawers and barely able to stand is enraged by the information he’s learned about Melanie. The two of them have to collide and of course, it’s at the moment when everyone’s life is in the most danger.
Episode six titled “Trouble Comes Sideways” manages to find humanity in all its passengers. In the face of certain death, each class section grapples with the fact they’re all kidding themselves into thinking life on the train is anything but normal. Something is going on behind the scenes and no matter how much they try to ignore it, they can’t deny that perhaps they are all one word or two away from being thrown in the tail. While third-class prepares to strike, Melanie uses the near derailment of the train to temporarily put the fire out completely. She doesn’t have time for a revolution unless it’s coming from her side. Layton gets help from a second class doctor who is disturbed by the fact her name has ended up on a list that seems to indicate a slew of people who will eventually be put into the drawers, including both Layton and Josie. Meanwhile, Bess Till anxiously lets Osweiller run amok for fear he’ll expose the fact she helped Layton escape from the drawers, but the tension between the two is thrown out the window as they cling to the holding cell bars and pray that today isn’t the day their lives end.
As the train does its best to derail itself, the tail end seems to be the calmest about their impending doom. Perhaps because life in the tail is already so bad that the idea of death is welcomed at this point. They’ve come to peace with the fact things will more than likely never get better for them. Which is a sad thing to see because little do they know, Layton is working overtime to figure out a way to the train in the best way possible. He knows Melanie secret now and it’s the biggest one of them all, this gives him an advantage over her. At least until she finds a way to either outsmart him or hurt the ones he cares for most, she’s already taken an unusual interest in Miles.
For me, the best part of the episode was getting to see Layton confront Melanie. Even though the interaction wasn’t long and she will now be on the hunt for him, it’s always fascinating to watch Daveed Diggs and Jennifer Connelly play off each other. The dynamic between them just about makes the show. Layton and Melanie are opposite sides of the same coin, they both want what is best for their people. The disconnect comes from the fact that who they believe to be their people are at completely different sections of the train. As much as Melanie claims that she is for the greater good of the entire train, it’s very clear that first and second class are the ones that hold the higher ground to her. And Layton’s loyalty to the tail end has yet to falter and probably never will. This means whichever one of them can get third class on their side first will most likely be the one to win the revolution, because as Miss Audrey has already stated, third class touches every section of the train and they are the ones who ultimately keep everything running smoothly.
The most unsettling thing about Snowpiercer is how much it resembles the current world we’re living in today. We may not all be stuck on a train but the rumbles of a revolution are just as strong here as they are in the show. We’re one or two wrong police interactions away from a full-on uprising and the government is starting to realize it. In Snowpiercer, all it’s going to take is one wrong move from Melanie or from Layton and everything will crumble. The class sections were a mistake from the beginning but now it’s too late to get rid of them or correct them. They must be dealt with. And I’m so excited to watch it unfold.
Snowpiercer airs Sunday nights on TNT
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