Mr. Hector Salamanca himself, Better Call Saul’s Mark Margolis, took part in a major scene on TNT’s Snowpiercer TV Series premiere episode tonight.
This article contains spoilers for TNT’s Snowpiercer Season 1 Episode 1.
Mark Margolis’ Snowpiercer portrayal ended with his character ‘Old Ivan’ committing suicide in brutal fashion on tonight’s premiere episode “First, the Weather Changed”. The tailies (or underclass of Wilford Industry’s Snowpiercer train for those who haven’t seen the 2013 film), were throwing a birthday celebration for ‘Old Ivan’. He seemed to be relishing the attention at first, making but one simple wish. Privacy!
“There is only one extravagance that I would wish for my birthday… Privacy! To be alone for one hour with a Rachmaninoff recording!”
Snowpiercer tailie ‘Lights’ [Miranda Edwards] would hand ‘Old Ivan’ an iPhone with Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Piano Concerto No. 2” ready to play. Tailie Josie Wellstead [Katie McGuinness], Detective Andre Layton’s wife would signal to clear the room and respect Old Ivan’s request.
“Alright you heard him, everybody out!”
No one had a clue Old Ivan’s wish would be his last. Ivan would take a look at a black and white framed photo of what appeared to be his wife and younger self, smiling, before kissing it. The whole tail train carriage was enjoying Rachmaninoff’s concerto from their beds before the iPhone’s battery ran out. Pin-drop silence sentenced the tail back to reality.
Where music played, only ‘Old Ivan’s’ body remained, hanging from the ceiling. Lifeless. Old Ivan had used the opportunity to do the most personal of deeds without a shadow to stop him. A two pronged tool previously used to hold his photos together would drop to the ground.
Detective Andre Layton [Daveed Diggs] had previously mentioned ‘Old Ivan’ was the only one to ever see the north areas of the train in the opening minutes of the episode. Perhaps, Old Ivan had viewed such a high quality of life in the other train carriages that he couldn’t resign himself to living in the tail anymore. Memories of his younger days, not enough from a barren state of mind.
At first, Margolis seemed to have been channeling a new iteration of John Hurt’s ‘Gilliam’ from the 2013 film adaption… But it soon became clear Snowpiercer’s TV Series debut was distinctly meant as an alternate reality rather than a serialized TV remake with a new cast.
Pike [Steven Ogg] would later utilize Old Ivan’s suicide to fuel a full-scale tailie rebellion. Layton had been removed from the tail by Wilford Industries for unknown purposes (to the tail), seeming like a traitor. Without ‘Old Ivan’ or Layton maintaining calculating restraint, the action-based Pike was finally able to convince the tail to seek revenge now… Rather than later. Wilford’s soldiers would enter the tail to remove Old Ivan’s body… Only to find a most lively non-corpse in his place attacking at will, along with the rest of the tailies. A death not in vain.
To quickly recap: Those without a ticket to board Mr. Wilford’s train during the great climate engineering disaster (that froze the planet) live in slum-like conditions. Their forced station is the back of the train, the tail. The train carriage holding the ‘tailies’ was full of people living practically on-top of each other due to the confined space given to those who boarded illegally.
Be sure to read Ray Donovan’s Molly Sullivan should look familiar to Better Call Saul fans and Better Call Saul’s Patrick Fabian made a cameo on Barry in ‘Future Space’ for more BCS talents making their way onto your favorite shows!
Here’s how to watch Snowpiercer online via TNT live stream every Sunday!
Snowpiercer’s Jennifer Connelly aka Melanie Cavill let her flowing locks cascade down for the first time on “Access Is Power”. An episode spotlighting human depravity, regressive economic bartering, a rigid class system, and gladiatorial delights as distraction for the train’s semi-civilized, post-modern serfs.
This article contains spoilers for TNT’s Snowpiercer Episode 3 (“Access Is Power”).
Lithe, graceful, sophisticated caretaker of Wilford Industries’ hospitality by day, darwinistic demigod by night. Melanie Cavill’s prim & proper daylight demeanor allows her to maintain cover as Snowpiercer’s autocrat out in the open. Whether there ever was a real Mr. Wilford or not aboard Snowpiercer’s TV series alternate reality (and judging by a conversation between Layton & Roche tonight, there was), he lives only through Melanie Cavill now.
Cavill plays surrogate to an almost mythical, Zeus-like Mr. Wilford, introducing his elegant, refined pre-recorded messages as present day…. While letting her hair fall in relaxation over the charade, plunging the distance gravity will take it. Her Victorian updo as much of a mask and facade as the estate’s supposed noble lord. All part of the delicate balance of Snowpiercer’s ecosystem.
Mr. Wilford’s disguise allows her to personally asses the state of her dominion without revealing a visible royal crown. Thus, the train’s internalized caste system: elites, middle-class, lower-class, and the underclass of the tail are none the wiser to their true ruler.
Roman Coliseum as distraction from a species’ extinctionSnowpiercer Season 1 Episode 3 “Access is Power” on TNT – Pictured: Lena Hall as Miss Audrey – Photo Credit: Justina Mintz
The elite investing family responsible for bringing Mr. Wilford’s vision to life made Ruth Wardell fully aware of their displeasure on tonight’s Snowpiercer. Unlike the ‘paupers’ that don’t look past a hit of Kronole, or those fully submerged in hedonistic delights aboard the train, Lilah Folger [Kerry O’Malley] knows an extinction event has occurred on Snowpiercer. While she couldn’t place the exact nature or species type, Mrs. Folger made it clear she knew Mr. Wilford’s Fight Night was a distraction. A modern Roman Coliseum to placate the masses while Rome itself burns, one train carriage at a time.
Fight Night saw Lilah Folger’s daughter LJ [Annalise Basso] not just take in the sights but relish complete societal breakdown. Anarchy broke out post-fight, as the elite watched from above in total safety, laughing in serene amusement. LJ even took the time to wave to Layton, seeing the train detective as just another pawn from the tail to be utilized and disposed. Sent back to the tail for all of time. In fact, Lilah made for than a few comments to Melina Cavill to simply get rid of the tail train carriage altogether. And not in jest. Rather, more as an insignificant burden making their caviar arrive late to the table each day.
Cavill shed her Pan-Am style blue uniform for a luxurious, chic sequined evening dress to commemorate Fight Night. Blending in with the elites that own the first class.
Kronole Origins Revealed
It turns out Dr. Henry Klimpt [Happy Anderson] is responsible for the street drug known as ‘Kronole’, though semi-indirectly. He’d been skimming the very chemicals used to suspend ‘unruly’ train riders in preparation for their stay in the drawers. Thus, a black market sprung along the third class in what would become Kronole. Essentially, those suspended in animation in the drawers become Kronole addicts as exemplified by accused train murderer Nikki Genêt [Madeleine Arthur].
Snowpiercer’s Dark UnderbellySnowpiercer Season 1 Episode 3 “Access is Power” on TNT – Pictured: Mike O’ Malley as Roche and Jennifer Connelly as Melanie Cavill – Photo Credit: Justina Mintz
Beneath the veneer exterior of the first class’ polished clientele lies decaying foundations built on the souls of the less fortunate. John Osweiller [Sam Otto] used his position to secretly trade Kronole, which can be used medicinally, to the tailies in exchange for sexual favors. One tailie was seen making such a trade last episode, his eyes looking vacant after the act…
The theme of tonight’s Snowpiercer showcased an economic system without rules or regulations, where every part of a human being is commoditized and sold to the highest bidder in exchange for one thing… Access. The thinnest opportunity for upward mobility available only by bartering anything and everything possible. A pre-determined free market rigged by winners. Those less fortunate destined to chase after the elite’s promised table scraps.
Be sure to read Better Call Saul’s Mark Margolis in big Snowpiercer Premiere scene, watch The Natural Aristocrat’s NYCC interview with Jennifer Connelly, and discover how to watch Snowpiercer online each Sunday.
Snowpiercer presented an accidental, climate-based extinction event for cows on tonight’s episode. A chilling reminder of how fragile our ecosystem truly is.
This article contains spoilers for TNT’s Snowpiercer Episode 2 (“Prepare to Brace”).
A breach occurred on Snowpiercer’s train carriage slaughterhouse tonight, leading to the extinction of an entire species. Windows shattered as an avalanche introduced cows to the raging, frosty touch of the unforgiving new ice age. The cold seeped inside, turning all organic matter into popsicles in a matter of seconds. You could see life leaving the cow’s poor eyes, trading one misfortune for another. Each door spelling the same end.
Instead of death by a butcher’s knife, their only chance at freedom ending as a mirage. To be defrosted and sold to the highest bidder. An ‘elite’ clientele frenzy, like ants approaching to devour a dropped candy bar. To Melanie Cavill (or Mr. Wilford), the moment represented “An Extinction Event.” From this point forward, there will be no cows ever again. The fragile balance of Snowpiercer’s ecosystem has been disturbed. Since livestock was kept on board only for food supply and none for conservation, one accident was all it took to wipe out a species for eternity.
Strangely enough, one newly introduced character on the series, Breachman Bojan Boscovic [Aleks Paunovic], was elated to have the grim reaper’s frigid hand clasp his skin. He watched in happiness as Melanie and another employee explored the breached train in protective suits, as cold winds damaged his skin instantly. Rejoicing in being able to feel the outside world regardless of consquence.Snowpiercer Season 1 Episode 2 “Prepare to Brace” on TNT – Pictured: Aleks Paunovic as Breachman Bojan Boscovic – Photo Credit: Photograph by Justina Mintz
Humans utilize Ice Age to introduce twisted punishments
The opening scene of “Prepare to Brace” recalled a ruthless form of punishment seen in the 2013 film adaption. One tailie, a mother, begged for her daughter to be spared punishment and she taken in her place. Her daughter had murdered six of Wilford’s employees on Snowpiercer’s premiere during a Tailie revolt. The mother claimed her daughter’s doing as a result of her poor parenting…. Much to the delight of Wilford Industries employee Ruth Wardell.
Her daughter was returned, and water was poured on the mother’s arm. Then just like in the film, her arm was shoved through a hole in the train carriage to the outside world. Exposed, she screamed in absolute agony as the arm froze. A sledgehammer was used by a Wilford solider to shatter the limb without mercy.
It’s clear Mr. Wilford / Melanie Cavill does not give much thought to the ‘stowaways’ of the tail, always cutting off their electricity (rolling blackouts to the tail) and any other ‘amenity’ first. Wardell’s display of public punishment serves not only as a warning… But as a twisted reminder they should be ‘grateful’ to Mr. Wilford for shielding them from the outside world’s climate.
Wilford serves as an almost deity-like figure aboard the Snowpiercer. Although those that operate the train alongside Melanie Cavill, know the eternal engine is anything but. Though Wilford has kept Snowpiercer humming along, seven years in operation, it’s still governed by the same laws of nature.
Be sure to check out:
– Better Call Saul’s Mark Margolis in big Snowpiercer Premiere scene
– Jennifer Connelly talks Acting, not looking back to replicate past works (Interview)
– How to watch Snowpiercer online via live stream
as part of The Natural Aristocrat’s ongoing Snowpiercer TV series coverage.