black girl blogs · reviews · tv reviews

Snowpiercer: Sound The Alarm

It would be almost unbecoming if, after a wonderful hosted night on Snowpiercer, Wilford didn’t return the favor. In his own charming and cruel way of course. Last night on Snowpiercer’s halfway point in the season, the audience was treated to dinner with Wilford and Audrey, Josie’s activities on Big Alice, the possible solution to Till’s spiraling emotional state, a Pike and Layton team up and another shift in the slate of allies and enemies. Life is never dull post apocalypse.

To start, the kind of hold Miss Audrey has over Mr. Wilford may not be the kind that it needs to be. Last week it was portrayed like Audrey could mold Wilford into anything she wanted, like she had a spell over him and he was puddy in her hands. However this week, on his own playing field, Wilford gave a little push back against that idea. He was still charming, polite and completely attentive to Miss Audrey; but he’s not an idiot. In fact, the one true thing about Mr. Wilford that is known is that he’s a genius. An evil one, but a genius nonetheless. He has a plan, his main objective is taking back Snowpiercer. He wants Miss Audrey by his side but it’s not exactly a deal breaker if he doesn’t have her. Which is why he keeps things from her, for all the love and obsession Wilford claims to have for her, he doesn’t trust her and inviting Miss Audrey to dinner was simply a surface level decoy. His people are already on Snowpiercer and are set to make the biggest amount of trouble they have yet. All the while Wilford and Audrey dance around each other in the engine room of Big Alice. He’s been telling any and everyone that no one is prepared for what’s coming next, and it’s looking like he’s going to be right.

Just like Mr. Wilford has his own plan, so does Miss Audrey. She’s a part of Layton’s inner circle, the people he’s entrusting to help him keep Snowpiercer a Wilford free zone. She’s probably the most important person in the circle besides Andre himself, her closeness to Wilford is the upper hand that Snowpiercer needs. She even goes as far as risking Wilford’s wrath by attempting to quickly switch wires in his communication box so that Ben and Javi can hear everything said. Miss Audrey is the perfect person to be their middle man. Until suddenly she isn’t. At the end of their evening, right when Audrey is about to cross back over the train border, the alarms on Snowpiercer begin to sound. Something is very wrong and despite knowing that it’s Wilford who caused it, when faced with the decision of going back to Snowpiercer or staying on Big Alice, Miss Audrey chooses to stay. A conclusion that will likely get her branded as a traitor, or having flown the coup on those who are her friends. At this point, it’s hard to see why Audrey picked staying with Wilford over returning to Snowpiercer to see what’s going on. It’s also hard to see her flipping the script that quickly, but rash decisions usually have harsh consequences and Miss Audrey deciding to stay with the man that abused her for years does not bode well for anyone, no matter what kind of hold she thinks she has on him.

In other spaces on Big Alice, Josie is being treated for her severe frostbite and trying to learn everything she can about the things that happen on this train. Lucky for her, Mr. and Mrs. Headwood are always told whenever Wilford is going to make a move and when one of his men comes to tell them that something is going to happen on Snowpiercer that same night, Josie rushes to get word to Layton. They have a connect to pass messages now, Big Alice’s last Australian, and Josie isn’t about to let her people get attacked with no warning. However, the status of those on Snowpiercer really should be the last thing Josie is worried about. Her entire body is covered in frostbite, she’s being fully dipped in the gel that the doctors smoothed over Melanie’s frozen shoulder, they’re taking tissue from her whole body for tests constantly and the pain is never ending. She may never recover one hundred percent from this, which is obvious in the way the Headwoods never answer that question when she asks it. They can fix her, in a sense, but she’ll most likely never be the Josie we met in S1 again.

Josie isn’t completely alone though. Icy Bob is also constantly in the Med Lab being tested and poked and prodded. He knows exactly what Josie is going through, he even helps her calm down from a panic attack caused by the consistent pain. He may not be an ally exactly, but he also hasn’t yet snitched on her for sending secret messages and not taking her anesthesia pills so she could listen in while the doctors took deep tissue from her. They have a mutual understanding almost, and it would be interesting to see if Josie can flip Icy Bob to Snowpiercer’s side before it’s all said and done. He would be a great addiction and a much needed power boost. That is if he’s not already completely brainwashed by his alliance to Mr. Wilford.

Over on the train that really matters, it’s chaos. And this chaos has been brewing for a while. There’s too many rumblings and rumors gaining ground and traction. It’s been two weeks since Lights fingers were cut off and Till’s tunnel vision on the Breachmen is causing her to lose sight of everything else. Even Layton has started to side eye Till and her erratic behavior, so he gives her a day off. He probably could have done more by simply sitting and talking with her but Andre has his own issues going on, so it’s understandable that he doesn’t have time for Till’s declining mental health. But Pastor Logan does and after stopping Till from starting a disrespectful fight in the Market car, he takes her to a boxing cage and beats her up. Literally. Which is apparently what Till needed because she comes out of the cage looking more refreshed than we’ve seen her since before the revolution. Till needs someone in her corner, a person who can clear her head without sex. And it seems like that person is being found in the Pastor. The possibility of their growing friendship could easily be one of the most interesting aspects on the train, as long as he doesn’t end up dead because of association.

In an almost ironic parallel, Layton is spiraling just as much as Till is. To the point where even Zarah has made points that should have come from Andre but he is hesitant to say. Being a leader is not what Layton was meant to do, as tough as that is to acknowledge. His heart is too soft, his goals too caring and his need to shed as little blood as possible just might get him killed if he isn’t careful. Or at least, that’s the running rumor on the train. Layton wants peace, but 50% of Snowpiercer wants Wilford and to them the only thing standing between them and the original creator returning is Andre Layton. He has an even bigger target on his back now, and fewer friends than he realizes. However, if there’s one thing Layton doesn’t play about, it’s the two women he loves. No matter who audiences ship Layton with, he clearly loves both Josie and Zarah, just in different ways. So when Terrance threatens Josie’s safety, over trades no less, Layton is sent into a quiet rage. One that hints at just how terrifying of a leader he could be if he would allow himself to. In a very quick, clean and Mr. Wilford like way, Layton sets up to have Terrance taken out. He even gets LJ, Osweiller and the guards of the car, who work for Terrance, to take a walk and pretend they don’t know what’s happening up in the man’s quarters. When he wants to be, Andre can be scary, he can be a killer or a leader or even the mob boss who sends others to do his dirty work. But only when it comes to Josie and Zarah, which doesn’t make a lot of scene. What keeps Layton from unleashing that side of him upon Wilford? Upon those who only oppose his leadership of the train because he’s from the tail, and they are probably racist; why doesn’t he fill the job description the way it was meant to filled? Most likely because he doesn’t want to turn into Wilford, or even Melanie really, but the longer he tries to keep the peace by being peaceful, the harder it’s going to hurt when everyone turns on him, including his inner circle.

However the most interesting thing about Layton this episode was not the way he handled Terrance, it was the display of the friendship he and Pike have. Often, back in S1, it seemed like Pike was out to get Layton. He doesn’t agree with his soft approach to things, he knows Layton doesn’t really have it in him to lead the train. But despite all that, Pike is also very loyal to Layton. And Layton to him. They are two tail brothers, and being a tailly matters more than anything when it comes to standing up against those outside of the tail. It doesn’t help that Terrance decided he was going to try and intimidate Pike into being one of his men. So it wasn’t very surprising that Pike stuffed his head full of cement from a glue gun on Layton’s orders. What is surprising though is the way killing Terrance made Pike emotional. We don’t know much about Pike at all, other than he can at times be a pain in Layton’s ass. But last night we did learn that Layton is the reason Pike wasn’t killed for cannibalism, which makes his willingness to kill for him all the more clear. When it comes down to it, Pike is actually pretty high on the list of people Layton can turn to and trust to get the job done.

The most surprising development of the episode comes in the form of Ruth finally picking a side. As the alarms blare on the entire train and Audrey stands on the Big Alice side hesitant to return, Ruth finally lays down her loyalties. And it’s not with Wilford, it’s with Snowpiercer. When Wilford attempts to get Ruth to cross the border over onto Big Alice, she declines. It’s a bit shocking, seeing as how she’s spend most of this season being overjoyed at his returning and quietly fighting her own battle for Layton’s trust. But in the moment, when it really matters, it’s clear where Ruth stands. She’s on Snowpiercer’s side, on Layton’s side. Which only makes Miss Audrey’s choice to stay on Big Alice all the more confusing. If anything their position should be switched and it should be Ruth choosing Big Alice, the fact that it’s Audrey adds another layer of mystery and future conflicts. No one is going to be happy about Miss Audrey not coming back, but hopefully everyone will have an extra nice word for Ruth. She deserves the praise.

Something sinister is happening aboard Snowpiercer but no one other than Wilford knows the true extend of it. Not even Alex has been privy to certain conversations, and she’s starting to realize it. But it may be too late, especially with how easily Wilford’s men were able to take out every Breachman except for Boki. We’d been under the impression that Snowpiercer had the advantage over Big Alice, but now we see that’s absolutely not the case. We’ve underestimated Mr. Wilford and it looks like we’re all going to pay for it.

We’ve reached the middle of the season, usually the point where shows slow down, but with Snowpiercer there is no pumping the breaks now. And it’s a better show for it .

Snowpiercer airs Monday nights on TNt

-Danyi

P.S. if you enjoyed the read, buy lunch or something. Cashapp me: $danyi13