TV Review: Snowpiercer (Netflix) – Season One

Created by Josh Friedman and Graeme Manson and based on the Bong Joon-ho film of the same name which was released in 2013, which in turn is based on the 1982 French graphic novel Le Transperceneige, the ten-part Netflix series aired in May 2020. A reboot of the film’s continuity, the series follows the passengers of the Snowpiercer, a gigantic, perpetually moving train that circles the globe carrying the remnants of humanity seven years after the world becomes a frozen wasteland. Built by billionaire Wilford, the train is rigidly separated by class, with passengers caught up in a revolutionary struggle against the strictly imposed social hierarchy and unbalanced allocation of limited resources.


A huge fan of the Bong Joon-ho film, I didn’t know whether to be excited about a new series that would divert people to a film that sadly missed out on a UK realise, or annoyed that Joon-ho’s efforts might be overlooked for something more mainstream. But if it brings light to a truly underappreciated film, then I won’t complain.

The dystopian setting created in Le Transperceneige is what makes this such a great story worthy of adapting, rebooting and expanding on. The sci-fi premise is brilliantly crafted and explored in a unique and immersive way. Questioning class warfare, social injustice, and the politics of survival, it’s a well-developed series that is sure to entertain.

Fueled by admirable performances, there’s a lot about this series to get excited by. There are many new faces that impress, but one you will recognise is that of Jennifer Connelly who is brilliant in her lead role. I’ve not seen her anything this good for years, so it was great to see her take charge.

At the time of watching this series, I didn’t know much about Daveed Diggs but I have since watched Hamilton [repeatedly] so I love his character even more now. He gives such an enigmatic performance and I look forward to seeing more from him from now on.

The series could have done with being a little shorter and more concise as it’s easy to get lost in the mid-section. The start is intriguing and exciting while the final few episodes are effective, but it does slow down in between all of that. But with that ending, I’m sure we’ll all be back for the next season and I’m certainly looking forward to it.

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