Review: 'Snowpiercer - Season 3' a One-way Ticket to Nowhere

by JC Alvarez

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Tuesday January 25, 2022

Daveed Diggs in ;Snowpiercer - Season Three'
Daveed Diggs in ;Snowpiercer - Season Three'  (Source:Warner Media)

Someone stop this train! In the second season of this TNT original series, based on the film from Academy Award-winning filmmaker Bong Joon-Ho ("Parasite"), which in turn was based on the popular graphic novel, the trajectory of the "Snowpiercer" appeared to be heading toward derailment. The series, starring Jennifer Connely and Daveed Diggs, fittingly found an interesting and engaging level of believability in its first season, introducing Diggs' revolutionary, Andre Layton, who had been recruited to solve a murder aboard the runaway train.

The series is set in a frigid post-apocalyptic wasteland where the remnants of mankind survive aboard a train that runs circles the globe — the titular Snowpiercer. A caste system of "haves" and "have nots" has developed aboard the train. Under Connelly's Melanie Cavill, the population remained civil with one another, until the social strains led to inevitable strife between the classes. Season Two introduced the shadowy puppetmaster that had set these helpless souls on their locomotion to nowhere, the mysterious Mr. Wilford (played by "Game of Thrones" veteran Season Bean).

The ties that bind become more tenuous and the threat level increases in the series' third season, which premiered Jan. 24. The rebels have pulled off an escape from the iron rule of Wilford, and they now find themselves in a game of cat and mouse with the vengeful engineer. Meantime, Diggs and his band are in search of pockets of warmth across the Earth's frozen surface in which to set up encampments from which to stage their continued survival.

Diggs and his crew are convinced that if they are to exist they must reclaim the planet, but Diggs is also aware that they are caught between a rock and a hard place. "Snowpiercer" thrives on the notion that humanity's survival is tied to the momentum of the train, but if the series has done anything, it's proven it's at a crossroads.

The narrative felt inventive at first and might have remained so in the form of a limited series, but the format of the weekly series is starting to wear thin. (It doesn't help that there doesn't appear to be any ultimate destination for this train to nowhere.) The claustrophobic nature of the setting is also hard to deal with, and the characters have become caricatures as two-dimensional as the graphic novel that "Snowpiercer" is based on. If the audience is able to dispel belief and settle into this uncomfortable drama then you're welcome to it, but a ticket to "Snowpiercer," Season Three, is a one-way ticket to nonsense.

"Snowpiercer," Season Three, premiered on TNT Jan. 24.

Native New Yorker JC Alvarez is a pop-culture enthusiast and the nightlife chronicler of the club scene and its celebrity denizens from coast-to-coast. He is the on-air host of the nationally syndicated radio show "Out Loud & Live!" and is also on the panel of the local-access talk show "Talking About".

Streaming Reviews

This story is part of our special report titled Streaming Reviews. Want to read more? Here's the full list.