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Star Trek: Discovery Season 3's Snowpiercer References Explained

Warning: SPOILERS for Star Trek: Discovery Season 3, Episode 2 - "Far From Home."

Star Trek: Discoveryseason 3, episode 2 "Far From Home" saw the U.S.S. Discovery crash on a desolate planet containing parasitic ice, and it featured some sly winks to recent TNT seriesSnowpiercer. Star Trek: Discovery has undergone a massive paradigm shift and jumped into the 32nd century, which is the farthest point the franchise has ever charted. This has unshackled the flagship CBS All-Access Star Trek series from canon, and also allowed it to take interesting creative risks.

TNT's Snowpiercer is adapted from the 2013 movie directed by Bong Joon-Ho and starring Chris Evans (in turn based on a graphic novel called Le Transperceneige), although it's set in a rebooted continuity. In the Snowpiercer TV series, a super train 1,001-cars-long carries the last 3,000 survivors of humanity aboard as it endlessly tracks its revolutions around the Earth, which has turned into a frozen wasteland. When Snowpiercer began, the train was controlled by Melanie Cavill (Jennifer Connelly), the head of hospitality for Wilford Industries, and she made regular announcements as well as warning passengers to "prepare to brace" when Snowpiercer's ride turns bumpy. Melanie also ran the train with an iron fist, which included sentencing those who disturbed Snowpiercer's "perfect social order" to death. Snowpiercer's preferred means of capital punishment is the Lung of Ice, which forces the condemned to breathe in the lethal -119.6 degree Celcius air until their entire body freezes from the inside out.

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Star Trek: Discovery season 3, episode 2 opens with the U.S.S. Discovery out of control as it careened out of the wormhole it used to jump 930 years into the 32nd century. Tidal forces from within the wormhole knocked out the starship's controls and left it on a collision course with an unnamed ice planet. The bridge crew of the Discovery led by Acting Captain Saru (Doug Jones) scrambled to save their starship with tactics like rolling so that the top shields took the brunt of the atmospheric impact, and using graviton beams to slow their descent. As the Discovery crash-landed, the announcement was made for the crew to "brace, brace, brace!" as the starship barreled into the planet's surface - but it miraculously held (mostly) intact.

Discovery's "Brace, brace, brace!" harkened to Snowpiercer's "Prepare to brace!" mantra. Although making the call to "brace for impact!" is standard whenever other Star Trek ships crash - Commander Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes) gave a similar shipwide order when the U.S.S. Enterprise-D crash-landed on Veridian III in Star Trek Generations - it also came across like a friendly homage to Snowpiercer, especially since the Discovery landed on a frozen world of all places.

The nods to Snowpiercer continued after Saru and Ensign Sylvia Tilly (Mary Wiseman) ventured to The Colony, a nearby mining settlement, to barter for supplies they needed to repair the Discovery. Saru and Tilly met Coridans who were under the heel of a villain named Zareh (Jake Weber), a courier who was running a protection racket and extorting The Colony. Zareh took Saru and Tilly hostage and told them about the planet's parasitic ice; he explained to Tilly that he once saw the ice "go down someone's throat" and this definitely evoked Snowpiercer's Lung of Ice death sentence.

The downtrodden look and feel of The Colony homaged the Old West (complete with saloon doors), but there are also similarities between the ragged look of the Coridans and the desperate and filthy denizens of Snowpiercer's Tail section. Another of Snowpiercer's distinctive mantras is saying, "These are our revolutions", which describes every time the Great Ark Train circumnavigates the frozen Earth. In Star Trek: Discoveryseason 3, Commander Michael Burnham's (Sonequa Martin-Green) mission is to unite the far-flung and isolated remnants of the fallen United Federation of Planets, thereby sparking their own revolution in the galaxy of the 32nd century.

Star Trek: Discovery season 3 streams Thursdays on CBS All-Access and Fridays internationally on Netflix.

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