The Tortoise and the Hare – | Review Score – 3/5
Last To Go – | Review Score – 3/5
The First Blow – | Review Score – 4/5
Bound by One Track – | Review Score – 3/5
A New Life – | Review Score – 3/5
Born to Bleed – | Review Score – 2.5/5
Ouroboros – | Review Score – 2.5/5
Setting Itself Right – | Review Score – 2/5
A Beacon for Us All – | Review Score – 2.5/5
The Original Sinners – | Review Score – 2.5/5
One of the more surprising film to TV adaptations has been that of Snowpiercer. The exploits of a post-apocalyptic train riding around the globe has been impressively robust and a mainstay for TNT (Netflix for those watching outside the US) for several seasons now.
The end of season 2 hinted at a dramatic and crazy 10 episodes of action but unfortunately what we get with season 3 is a meandering and somewhat directionless season that can’t quite decide where it wants to go with its story.
For those who need a recap, Snowpiercer ended with the train split in two, with Mr Wilford now in charge of Snowpiercer and turning the train back into a hierarchical nightmare. For Layton and the motley band of rebels, they find themselves on Big Alice and desperate to unite the train and overthrow the evil Wilford once and for all.
Along the way though, Layton uncovers a secret that could change everything we’ve come to know about this world, leading to a surprising and shocking turn of events that encapsulate the second half of the season, leading the train in a brand new direction.
I won’t spoil anything here but suffice to say this quest involves a lucrative promised land that could well be the salvation that Layton and everyone else has been looking for.
At the same time though, there’s also the quest to try and find Melanie, who’s still missing and presumed dead. Only… is she really?
These plotlines essentially grab most of the season by the scruff of the neck but given there are 10 episodes to fill, it actually feels Like there’s enough material to serve 6 or so.
There are a couple of completely pointless bottle episodes here, including an entire sequence dedicated to an inconsequential dream and others that feature superficial issues that are resolved without much aplomb by the end of that specific episode.
This feels like a common occurrence for most of this season in truth, and it’s a shame because there’s actually some good material here.
Unfortunately that good is vastly overshadowed by the mediocre, which bogs this season down and plagues large swathes of the run-time with a rather forgettable and lacklustre story.
With new showrunner promised for season 4, there’s definitely room here to turn this train around. The ending in particular sets the foundations for a promising new season, and that works quite well to drum up hope for those disillusioned with the direction the train(s) has taken this year.
At times Snowpiercer really struggles to balance out its large ensemble of characters. There are a few deaths and a couple of character twists that don’t always work, with Till in particular a culprit of this.
It’s not until late in the season where she’s given something substantial to work with while characters like LJ have very little development sticking to her archetype of “she crazy” for most of the run-time.
However, there’s definitely enough here to whet the appetite for the future but season 3 feels like an unfortunate blip along the way.
I’ve been a big fan of this show over the years and it’s disappointing to see Snowpiercer Season 3 take such a drastic dip in quality. Hopefully this train can get back on track next year.
Verdict - 5/10