In Review: Snowpiercer (S2 – Ep5) Keep Hope Alive

Layton faces a harsh dilemma
Keep Hope Alive

Synopsis: In ‘Keep Hope Alive’. Wilfred invites Audrey to be his guest on Big Alice while plotting his next move. Layton faces a harsh dilemma. Josie tries to pass intel to Snowpiercer.


The Story

Following on from last week. Trade is now running back and forth between Snowpiercer and Big Alice, but it isn’t without its problems. Josie who is on the Big Alice side of the train being treated for severe frostbite has been sending messages back to Layton. These messages are to keep Layton appraised of what Wilfred is plotting. But the only information Josie can get is what is discussed by the Headwood’s who are operating on her.

Further complicating matters is the fact that head porter Terrence who runs Snowpiercer’s contraband has learned about Josie and tries to use her as leverage against Layton. When Terence threatens to expose Josie. It forces Layton’s hand and Pike is brought in to do what must be done.

As part of his nefarious plans. Wilfred invites Audrey to Big Alice. Seeing a potential opportunity to spy on Wilfred. Layton has Ben show Audrey how to use Big Alice’s coms terminal to their advantage by rigging it so that Snowpiercer can listen in. While Wilfred and Audrey are together a plot unfolds involving the Breachmen on Snowpiercer.


The Acting

This was a really big episode as we begin to see the games get going between Wilfred and Layton. And boy do they get started. We get to see a bit more of Steven Ogg’s Pike as we learn a bit more about his backstory and the relationship between him and Layton. We get a great scene between Ogg and Daveed Diggs where Layton asks Pike to do something rather gruesome. The moment where Pike says he has been trying to be a better man is very telling of the past as well as how far his character has come. It’s also rather telling that Layton holds something over Pike. But we also see that Zara is able to manipulate Layton as well.

Alison Wright puts in another strong performance as Ruth who is far more complex of a character than meets the eye. She has some really strong scenes with Sheila Vand’s Zara. Her best scene is when they are told that Melanie has failed to make contact with the beacons. Layton is struggling to voice what must be done. Which allows Ruth to speak the truth of the matter. That they must lie to the train about Melanie in order to keep hope alive.

Sean Bean continues to be wonderfully manipulative as Wilfred and his scenes with Audrey show just how dangerous of a man he is. He is aware that Audrey has tried something with the coms panel, but chooses to continue to the pretense of their meeting. Meanwhile, Lena Hall channels a somewhat conflicted Audrey.



‘Keep Hope Alive’ is potentially the strongest episode of the season thus far. With Melanie Cavill off the train. Layton can no longer turn to her for guidance. He is now being forced into making some pretty horrific choices for the greater good of the train.

Bess Til who is taking a break from her new role as train detective has a telling conversation with Pastor Logan. In short, they discuss some niggling doubts about whether or not they have the right leadership in place on the train.

The question of leadership comes up again when Ruth tells Zara that she knows that leaders lie and is not a fool. This scene immediately foreshadows the reveal that Melanie has not made contact with the train.

Overall. A really solid episode with lots of great story threads and a great twist to end the episode on.

Snowpiercer (S2 - Ep5) Keep Hope Alive
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at: [email protected]
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