This week Titan Comics releases a world-first English translation of the acclaimed French comic Snowpiercer. The first volume out this week will be followed up by the second in February. You’ll be hearing a lot about both as a film based on them will be released soon in the US starring Chris Evans among others and released by The Weinstein Conpany. But what is it about?
Coursing through an eternal winter, on an icy track wrapped around the frozen planet Earth, there travels Snowpiercer, a train one thousand and one carriages long. From fearsome engine to final car, all surviving human life is here: a complete hierarchy of the society we lost…
The elite, as ever, travel in luxury at the front of the train – but for those in the rear coaches, life is squalid, miserable and short.
Proloff is a refugee from the tail, determined never to go back. In his journey forward through the train, he hopes to reach the mythical engine and, perhaps, find some hope for the future…
This claustrophobic tale hurtles you through this microcosm of life. Class, castes, social and political themes are wrapped up in an apocalyptic story taking place on a train. It’s Speed with thought. The train can never stop and each train section clearly is a statement on social stratification. One can say life is a struggle in every sense, especially for the poor, and here we see that manifested in a battle along the train, a mini-revolution in a small space. First the poor must take on and win over the army, whose leadership is the real issue. Then they all must move on to overthrow the political and religious leadership. On top of all of that social commentary there’s also a religious aspect of it all, with the train taking place of god.
Even without the much deeper layers, this sci-fi dystopian thriller on a train is entertaining just for its tense action. The writing by Jacques Lob is enhanced by Jean-Marc Rochette‘s art which feels like something from the British heyday of the 80s.
All together, this is an entertaining action thriller that’s much deeper than you’d expect. I absolutely recommend checking it out. I can’t wait to read the second volume myself.
Story: Jacques Lob Art: Jean-Marc Rochette
Story: 8.75 Art: 8.75 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy
Titan Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review