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DaveKap
Feb 5, 2006

Pickle: Inspected.




God this episode was so good. I looked it up and it appears that filming between season 1 and 2 actually had a massive break, which means they were able to look back, assess what they made, and do better on the second try. 2 episodes in and I think they learned their lesson. There's been absolutely nothing so far this season that has made me roll my eyes or wish they had done something different. It's... just really great television now!

Also lol at the W hand signal basically being this shows parallel to a nazi salute. It looks so dumb when people do it.

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Open Source Idiom
Jan 4, 2013


Thoughts, in the order I thought them.

- I wish the show hadn't dropped its only Korean actor (even if the character was rubbish). It just reminds me of the way that Bong Joon-ho's film (which this is super indebted to) was far more willing to use multiple languages and subtitles and this show really hasn't. It's kept the accent diversity, but it's lost the language diversity, which is a shame.

- Strikes me that Strong Boy's emergency from the pods, speaking Mandarin, is meant to be something of a shout out Song Kang-ho's character from the film.

- Not super convinced by Layton's very rapid power corrupts story. Or his taste in names.

- Oh hey, the subtrain set has moving parts. Not just the carriages, but the pistons and things also move. That's pretty cool.

- Speaking of sets, I'm like 80% certain the multi-faith car is a redressed version of the school car. (Speaking of, where are the kids going to school now?)

- LJ's the finger thief, yeah? I'm enjoying her and Sam Otto's character, they're a decent pairing. Can't remember why he's been demoted, but he was a bit of a poo poo so I don't really care.

- Has the chrono supply dried up? And, related, has Layton released all the passengers in cold storage, or just his mates?

- I've no idea how to read the bathtub scene. A suggestion of the film's prominent use of situational sexuality, or just weirdness

- Hulk Josie, calling it.

- I don't know how seriously the show is going to try it, but Alex is completely irredeemable at this point. There's bratty traumatised teenager, and then there's trying to outdo the kid from The Strain, and she's the latter.

- Everyone's super chill about Melanie being back. She and Ben seem to have made up with Javier too.

MiddleOne
Feb 17, 2011



I thought they were just trying to cement that he's a cult-leader all the way through. I thought he was gonna drown the guy or something first, what we got was... Different.

DarklyDreaming
Apr 4, 2009

Welcome to Disney XD Everyone!

MiddleOne posted:

I thought they were just trying to cement that he's a cult-leader all the way through. I thought he was gonna drown the guy or something first, what we got was... Different.

It's also really telling that he asks who his replacement is going to be before doing the quasi-seppuku. Like not even in a "You can't kill me boss, you still need me" way, more like "I hope the next guy does better next time" kinda way

MiddleOne
Feb 17, 2011



Like the guy proudly proclaimed when interrogated, didn't use to be very high up the food chain. Now we know how that happened.

Wheeee
Mar 11, 2001


sean bean is killing it as an irredeemably grotesque monster

DaveKap
Feb 5, 2006

Pickle: Inspected.




Open Source Idiom posted:

- I've no idea how to read the bathtub scene. A suggestion of the film's prominent use of situational sexuality, or just weirdness
So there's a few things about the tub scene:
Firstly, Big Alice's passengers are starving. One way to get some food is by cooking some human. I'm absolutely certain there's cannibal poo poo going on in that train. Who best to kill? Those with little to provide. Hospitality is super useless and this guy is the reason Snowpiercer got to learn a bit about Big Alice's situation, aka "weak points." Getting rid of him is an easy win.
Secondly, by having him do it in the tub, it makes for easier cleanup. Plus it seems like Jupiter really likes blood water. Jupiter is a good dog. Anything for Jupiter.
Finally, as for Mister Wilford himself getting into the tub, I viewed it as a power play to keep the conviction of his loyal subject. He's instilled in his most loyal passengers the idea that he is a God. We are reminded of this by the Faith car. If he just sat outside the tub and said "cut yourself" he might have some hesitation and resistance from his subject. If he gets into the tub naked with his subject, at his most vulnerable, he's essentially saying "you cannot do me any harm, for I am your God." It helped Kevin keep the faith right up to the end.

The thing that's weird to me is the fact they needed a suicide warning on the show when... the guy didn't really commit suicide. He was 100% coerced into it. If he didn't do it himself, Wilford would have. poo poo's just straight murder to me but I suppose some folks might not see it that way.

In any case Sean Bean rules.

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


Regarding the debate about the engine, remember that when the supply train showed up, they were hopeful it had spare parts for repair, just in case. The engine is limitless, but not the amount of energy it creates, and it can break. Then again, this is a world that has train tracks that cross the entire globe, so you've just got to roll with it.

Snowpiercer, for all its social issues, at least has a sustainable food supply. Even if the food is bad, there's enough of it, and they're trying to distribute it more evenly. WIlford's train doesn't have enough food - they're still reliant on tinned stocks, which will run out, and they don't seem to have any livestock.
For all the mistakes Melanie made as leader, she tried to create a closed ecosystem, Wilford wanted to run the train as his own fiefdom, where he could gorge himself on the last few dregs, letting humanity go extinct, that's why she left him behind.

The problem is, the supply train is more people in a smaller space than the main train, so he's been able to ramp up the cult of personality even more so.

Oasx
Oct 11, 2006

Greetings from Asbury Park

If Big Alice lacks food, why the heck are they growing weed instead of food?

Thumposaurus
Jul 24, 2007



Wilford was smoking a big doobie in one scene. They are growing it for him first.

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


Oasx posted:

If Big Alice lacks food, why the heck are they growing weed instead of food?

Wilford isn't planning for sustainability, or really for anyone who isn't Wilford.

Mokinokaro
Sep 11, 2001

At the end of everything, hold onto anything




Fun Shoe

He's a hedonist willing to ride things out until the bitter end as long as people praise him until then.

It's also why he probably doesn't give a poo poo about Melanie's discovery. The world healing means he loses his train cult where he can be a god in the long run.

ilmucche
Mar 16, 2016

#essereFerrari



How did everyone learn the secret wilford hand signal so quick?

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


ilmucche posted:

How did everyone learn the secret wilford hand signal so quick?

I thought they were copying him doing it as he walked through the train?

misguided rage
Jun 15, 2010

God I fucking love Diablo 3 gold, it even paid for this shitty title

It's only been seven years, they made a point of showing him remembering people. He was probably wandering around doing his weird salute all the time before he got ditched.

ilmucche
Mar 16, 2016

#essereFerrari



OldMemes posted:

I thought they were copying him doing it as he walked through the train?

To me it was a guy holding up the number three before it clicked. If the three finger salute was a thing before this I would have expected Ruth/maybe the rest of hospitality to be doing it all the time in season 1.

Unless it's some long game conspiracy where half the train has always known big alice was coming and were waiting to spring the trap

MiddleOne
Feb 17, 2011



I thought it meant conspiracy given the detective plot and dramatic music during the reveal, like some kind of show of loyalty. I guess next episode will make things clear though.

Khanstant
Apr 5, 2007



DaveKap posted:

It's the exterior shots that I'm talking about. Those are the important ones and the ones I'll just gorge myself on. Yeah, the smaller CG stuff is not particularly well done but it's way more forgivable for a show at this level of budget.

To its credit, this show is actually built to be weekly rather than built for possibly not being weekly. As such, this first episode has a start and end that perfectly encapsulates what makes a good television episode. As much as I love The Expanse, I find myself constantly going "OH COME ON I WANT MORE" at the end of almost every episode. Meanwhile Wandavision straight up pretends to be a weekly show despite being unbearable as one.

Yeah, I wouldn't say I binged the first season because it was built that way, it's just that I am a huge classist and there's a part of me that believes the rich people will lose in the finale so I rush my way there. On the other hand, past few nights been struggling what to watch, itching for something new so might hop in tonight and just enjoy the ride.

Wheeee
Mar 11, 2001


I don't think it's intentional but this show is doing an excellent job of showing why purges and a brief period of the ol' terror are necessary in the wake of a revolutionary victory.

GABA ghoul
Oct 29, 2011

You're all I think, this thing set troublin


Oasx posted:

If Big Alice lacks food, why the heck are they growing weed instead of food?

If the tail was eating goop and starving, why was snowpiercer growing cinnamon? If people in Sudan lack access to antibiotics, why are there factories producing hairloss and dick pills?

The answer is that the people in power have all they need and they don't give a poo poo about anyone else.

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


Melanie tried to re-balance the train, but it was her lack of transparency and fear of first class that let her down. If she'd said from the start "Wilford was going to use you as cattle, I'm the one who built the train, I wanted us to have a chance, let's try and work together", she might have got more done with the tail, but First Class and the staff would have revolted. Ruth explained that Wilford recruited her by hand, and he's probably done that a lot to build loyalty - like how he basically took credit for making the engine, when it wasn't his idea. The train was never designed to save humanity - Melanie has had to try and make it into that.

Melanie's main flaw is that she was scared to rock the boat too much, which makes sense, given how fragile the train is. But when you've got 400 people, who have a wide range of skills, experience, or could be taught new ones, it's both inefficient and demoralising to keep them in the dark, only sometimes using a few for tedious manual labour. She was good at managing resources, but not good at managing people, Leighton has the opposite problem, which is why the dynamic works so well.

I like how its less grim and dystopian (and surreal) than the film - giving the audience hope that they can work out a better solution. Then Wilford shows up!

DarkCrawler
Apr 6, 2009



If I had been Melanie I would have done the Season 1-end train-separating trick with Javi and Bennett the first time there was a separate track coming, only with all first class cars, but I guess she probably wasn't that cold (pun intended). I don't think there was much in the way of crucial resources there besides space in general but I figure the Tail would have been fine with bunking where they are as long as there is more food and poo poo. Plus maybe it would have been possible to re-join and clear all the frozen corpses somehow.

Then tell everyone the truth, become their Communist Liberator Wilford and turn all the W's upside down

DarkCrawler fucked around with this message at 12:38 on Feb 5, 2021

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


There were some alright people in first class, but it was unsustainable with the amount of resources and space. Melanie could have avoided a lot of the issues if she'd integrated the tail into 3rd class some more. Give them a fixed role, or apprentice them into needed roles, increase the food quality a bit and have staff be more polite, and that's a big way to increasing resource production and stopping social unrest. They'd probably have to stay in the tail for living, but letting them go into 3rd and 2nd class during the day to work and socialize seems like a quick fix. But she's too focused on the big picture, not individuals.

DarkCrawler
Apr 6, 2009



OldMemes posted:

There were some alright people in first class, but it was unsustainable with the amount of resources and space. Melanie could have avoided a lot of the issues if she'd integrated the tail into 3rd class some more. Give them a fixed role, or apprentice them into needed roles, increase the food quality a bit and have staff be more polite, and that's a big way to increasing resource production and stopping social unrest. They'd probably have to stay in the tail for living, but letting them go into 3rd and 2nd class during the day to work and socialize seems like a quick fix. But she's too focused on the big picture, not individuals.

I feel like the whole "they don't have tickets!" issue was even a bigger class divide at the start, without the Third Class being treated like crap for seven years and high on being the ones to survive the apocalypse and having that threatened by the stowaways. Less so if everyone is eating way better thanks to no more useless First mouths getting the lion's share and having the capacity to have more kids thanks to more food/space.

I mean they seem to have treated the Tail even worse in the beginning - dozens of people dying in the revolutions, way more arms taken off, cannibal kill cults due to lack of food...

Plus the Jackboots would have been conditioned to not allow any changes to the social structure. But they can be taken off the board with "Uhh could Colonel Evil and his officers gather to the First Class, big party coming up" SEVER I think the rank and file would be mostly ok with better rations and more room.

DarkCrawler fucked around with this message at 14:29 on Feb 5, 2021

Open Source Idiom
Jan 4, 2013


The idea of Melanie instituting a pre-emptive coup is infeasible; you can't just carve chunks out of your most powerful (and reactionary) class without expecting some massive power vacuum to form -- particularly if you take out the military too. She'd have been left open to power grabs, panic, revolution... it's impossible to imagine a world where Hospitality would have stayed silent, for instance.

The social systems on the train are just as severely interrelated as the train's ecological and logistical systems. You knock one system out of balance (first class) and the knock on effect will be felt in every other level, including maintenance and production.

If she'd been able to secure Nolan's support, I think this could have been feasible, but he was clearly loyal to the Folgers. Deposing the Folgers was ultimately only possible because a) they'd just instituted their own coup, and hadn't formalised and cemented their own power base, and b) Layton was there to provide replacement support structures.

DarkCrawler posted:

Plus the Jackboots would have been conditioned to not allow any changes to the social structure.

The train guards were never going to make peace with the tail; beyond the idea that you're telling a bunch of heavily armed thugs with cabin fever that they can't play with their favourite punching bags anymore, it's also very clearly personal for their leader, if not for everyone else.

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


Melaine's mindset is "try and save as much as humanity as possible" vs Wilford's "I'm the king of my own castle". A lot of First Class characters seem to have the mindset of "I paid to get luxury" rather than "I contributed funds to help people survive, in exchange for a place".

Ignoring the tail to their own devices for so long early on was a mistake - if the train had got them into a system and stopped the violence at the start, it would have turned out better. We haven't seen when Melaine tricked Wilford off the train yet, but the wording implies that she set off without him, rather than kicked him off after the start of the voyage.

joebuddah
Jan 30, 2005


I was honestly surprised that Wilford was a real person, not just the face of the company. I mean it's totally possible that if a woman was claiming the end of the world people would ignore it. But if "Wilford" said it and had a train they would believe it.

Sekenr
Dec 12, 2013






IMO that part where the service tran dropped anchor and will not let either of them go was super weak. Whats to stop the Snowpiercer from detaching the last cart and loving off?

Z the IVth
Jan 28, 2009

The trouble with your "expendable machines"

Fun Shoe

Sekenr posted:

IMO that part where the service tran dropped anchor and will not let either of them go was super weak. Whats to stop the Snowpiercer from detaching the last cart and loving off?

The brains behind the operation was on the service train?

Open Source Idiom
Jan 4, 2013


Sekenr posted:

IMO that part where the service tran dropped anchor and will not let either of them go was super weak. Whats to stop the Snowpiercer from detaching the last cart and loving off?

They have no battery power to restart the train.

MiddleOne
Feb 17, 2011



Snowpiercer will die without Big Alice and Big Alice is stuck to them. That's the entire premise of this season.

GABA ghoul
Oct 29, 2011

You're all I think, this thing set troublin


Willford looks like an idiot. I hope he is just a tool the reactionary elements on snowpiercer use to regain power and never amounts to much this season. Like all those bum kings that fascists used to fish out of the history garbage bin to get some old people support

Open Source Idiom
Jan 4, 2013


In addition to Sean Bean, there's some other nice casting this season -- big fan of both Damian Young and Sakina Jaffrey as the Tweedle Dee Doctors. Jaffrey has always been very good, but I've never seen her have the opportunity to turn up the camp in this kind of way.

There are a bunch of great Candian character actors in this -- Karin Konoval's a living legend -- but it's great to see some New York actors in this too.

Edit: Also it's totally the priest, right?

Ur Getting Fatter
Jun 9, 2007

Fast Food Fight



Grimey Drawer

Really wish they had taken a bit more time to flesh out the Melanie/Alex relationship. I understand that Alex is probably desperate for human warmth and love but the speed at which she went from "I don't really care about you, Melanie" to "I love you, mom" is so fast that it keeps me wondering whether she's actually playing Melanie.

Combat Pretzel
Jun 23, 2004

No, seriously... what kurds?!

Dear God, I hope they kill off Ruth soon. What a stupid caricature.

Mokinokaro
Sep 11, 2001

At the end of everything, hold onto anything




Fun Shoe

Ur Getting Fatter posted:

Really wish they had taken a bit more time to flesh out the Melanie/Alex relationship. I understand that Alex is probably desperate for human warmth and love but the speed at which she went from "I don't really care about you, Melanie" to "I love you, mom" is so fast that it keeps me wondering whether she's actually playing Melanie.

I think the fact she's losing Melanie for a month (at minimum) could certainly cause her to rethink things.

And Ruth is such a waste of a good actress. She was great in season one but man she's terrible here.

ItohRespectArmy
Sep 11, 2019

Cutest In The World, Six Time DDT Ironheavymetalweight champion, Third ever International Princess champion And a pretty good singer too!
"When I was an idol, I felt nothing every day but now that I'm a pro wrestler I'm in pain constantly!"



it's really weird, she was pretty interesting in s1 but in s2 she's just completely one note.

OldMemes
Sep 5, 2011

I have to go now. My planet needs me.


Seems like they're moving away from Ruth's divided loyalties now - they used her obsessive attention to detail for a joke, but it seems like she's thrown in fully with Layton and Melanie at the end.

Josie wanting revenge makes sense, but killing Melanie would be the worst idea she could have, considering that you know, she runs the train keeping everyone alive. Although Josie did seem more violent in season 1 than Layton, wanting to burn down the system, rather than re-balance and fix it. That kind of revolution is unsustainable, because someone's get to get governing afterward, otherwise it turns into infighting, the destruction of the life support and goodbye humanity. We kind of saw that in the film, but things aren't that bleak in season 2...yet.

Ur Getting Fatter
Jun 9, 2007

Fast Food Fight



Grimey Drawer

I’m not sure if it just wasn’t shown, but there really doesn’t seem to have been that big of a shakeup on room assignments after the revolution.

The fact that Layton can just get a huge first class room for himself when there should be like 10 other people at least living there is kind of weird.

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Vintersorg
Mar 3, 2004

PRESIDENT OF THE OFFICIAL BRENDAN FRASER FAN CLUB





Where is Laytons son?

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