by Gus Summers


  • Melanie opens her eyes. Awakened by sounds coming from the kitchen area, she lies still in bed. She reaches over to the other side and realizes that Bishop is not there. She gets out of bed.
  • In the kitchen area, Bishop washes dishes. Melanie walks in and smells the tea in the air. She asks Bishop why he’s washing the dishes. He tells her that just remembering and doing little things kept him going while at the lab alone.
  • Bishop asks Melanie if she remembers the day they met. She says she does: He walked up to her while she was reading in the library in college. He then asks her if he ever told her that it took him more than a week to build the courage to talk to her; and, that he practiced saying “Hello” to her in the mirror at home. She smiles and answers, “No.” Or, that he saved her college ID from that year and carries it with him? She replies, “I always wondered what happened to that!” He tells her he would often look at it because he loved the picture on it.
  • Bishop reaches into his pants pocket and pulls out a small stack of cards and photos. He sorts through them and hands her something. It is the ID. Melanie looks at it and softly laughs and reads her name out loud “Melanie Williams.” She then says, “It’s a terrible picture. I’m washed out!” Bishop answers, “I don’t think so!” She hands it back and he puts it away


  • When they finish dancing, Bishop walks over to the counter and begins to prepare Melanie’s tea. Melanie sits at the table and tells him that she received a note from Audrey late last night. She has a message from Wilford and asks that he pass by the Nightcar so that she can deliver it. Bishop takes Melanie her tea and sits down.
  • Bishop asks her if Audrey still does her Jedi mind stuff. She says, “Yes!” And, that he needs to be careful because Audrey has gotten much better at it. He tells Melanie to message her that he will pass by later. He adds that Melanie needn’t worry because he’s now too old to fall for parlour tricks. Melanie says she will also inform Alex.
  • Alex and Bishop walk through the train. He asks her what she knows about the revolution. Alex says that since she was on Big Alice, she only knows hearsay. She tells him that what she does know is that the outcome is not fully what everyone envisioned. There is no real working democracy. Instead, it has been slowly descending into a dictatorship much like Big Alice. Bishop comments, “Rome not Greece!” She agrees and adds that she thinks much of what happened was Melanie’s fault.
  • At the next turn, Bishop suddenly puts his hand on the wall in front of Alex. She stops. He proceeds to tell her that Melanie has made him aware of much of what has happened; and though he doesn’t agree with all she did, he understands it. Even with Melanie leaving her behind. Alex doesn’t say a word. He says that it’s best to leave the grief and the angst behind you if you have an opportunity to build a future, as he is doing. He tells her, “Leave the past in the past.”
  • Bishop emphasizes to Alex that he wants to make another thing clear. She needs to understand that he loves his wife and will not tolerate Alex calling Melanie by her first name in front of him. “It’s Mom!” he tells her. He adds that he hopes that it does not need to be explained. She says she understands and then hugs him. When they stop, Alex asks, “So tell me what you guys did on your first date.” Bishop answers, “Roller skate!”
  • As they continue their walk, a painting on the wall catches Bishop’s eye. He asks Alex if she wants to get to know her mother better. She answers, “Yes.” He says she should then ask her about her painting. Alex, surprised, says that she didn’t know. He answers that he thought so, then adds, “A little FYI. That painting we just passed is hers!”
  • Shocked, Alex runs back to look at the painting. It’s a seaside at sunset with seagulls in the air. Also, off in the distance, is what appears to be a father, mother and a small girl holding hands in between them. After looking at the painting for a bit, she begins to look for a signature. In the bottom right corner she finds the initials “MC.”


  • Alex runs back and tells him she can’t believe that Melanie paints and how she is such a great painter. He then says if she can’t believe that, she should ask her about her singing and her number 1 hit single in Japan. Alex stops and says “Wait. What?!” Bishop laughs and keeps walking.
  • As they pass the Medical Center, Dr. Pelton sees Alex and Bishop as she walks out the door. She tells Bishop that she would like to talk with him about his research. She wants to know more so that perhaps her department could develop its own technology to rival that of the Headwoods. He tells her that he would love to but that Melanie is now in charge of his research and she should schedule a meeting through her. Dr. Pelton says she will. Alex and Bishop head to the Nightcar.
  • As Alex and Bishop continue to walk, Alex asks him why he has given so much autonomy to Melanie. He tells her that he never had anyone in his life he could count on. But when Melanie showed up, and the way she loved him, he knew that he could count on her no matter what. He adds, “And, if you would get past your teenage angst, you would learn that, too.” He concludes with “But to answer your question directly, I’m confident in who I am!”
  • As they enter the Nightcar, LJ is there on special duty cleaning. As Alex and Bishop approach, LJ stops mopping and greets them snidely, “Hello, First Family! What brings you from First Class?” Alex stops and glares at LJ. LJ side smirks and shakes her head. Bishop pays her no mind and walks past her. LJ exclaims loudly, “No salutations for us peasants?” Bishop stops and turns to both girls.
  • Bishop walks up to them. Alex tells him that her name is LJ. Before she can say anything more, Bishop says, “Folger. Right?” LJ looks surprised. She answers, “Why, yes!” Bishop responds that she has her mother’s childish arrogance and that it was no wonder that her parents were killed in the revolution.
  • LJ attempts to give defense for her parents but Bishop says not to bother. She angrily says that it should be her that is in First Class. He responds by saying that it is not true and that without her parents she fell to her natural state, unlike Alex who rose to run the train. He turns and walks away. The two girls look at each other. Alex side smirks and shakes her head then follows her dad. LJ is left seething.
  • As they walk towards the back of the Nightcar, Audrey emerges from her office. Audrey greets them both. Alex then excuses herself and leaves Bishop and Audrey alone. Audrey tells Bishop that she has a message from Wilford and invites him into one of the private compartments.
  • While they are alone, Audrey attempts to entrance Bishop to reveal his innermost self under the guides of helping him heal. He stops her. He tells her that any bewitching to be done on him will be done by his wife. No one else. He then asks what it was that Wilford wanted.
  • Meanwhile, Layton finishes a meeting with some of Wilford’s loyalists. He tries to convince them that it is better for the people of Snowpiercer to stand together. That way, they can have a united front, especially when negotiating with Wilford for necessities.
  • The loyalist aren’t convinced and insist that they want Wilford in charge. There is an impasse. Layton tells them not to do anything drastic and says that the conversation can be continued later. They agree and he leaves towards the Nightcar to see Audrey. He is followed.


  • Audrey reiterates to Bishop that Wilford would like to see him. In fact, he extends an invitation to have him and Melanie over for dinner later that evening to share some good news. She says that he didn’t give any details other then that it has to do with one of the Australian labs. Bishop tells her that he accepts the invitation. Just let him know the time.
  • Before he leaves, he tells Audrey that Wilford is all about control. He understands why Wilford didn’t send a communique but sent her instead. Wilford’s hope was that she might be able to give him more insight into his motives. Bishop says to tell him that his motives are simple, “to protect my family!” He leaves.
  • As Layton enters the Nightcar, he is surrounded by 5 loyalists. He tells them that whatever they’re planning is not necessary. He reiterates that everything will be fine. They say that the only way for everything to be fine is for Wilford to be in charge. They rush him and begin to beat him.
  • After they overpower him, they force him to the floor. One of the attackers holds his hand out while another prepares to cut off his pinky and thumb. Suddenly, Layton sees one of the attackers being flung off him, crashing onto a table. Next, he sees the hand of the attacker with the cutters being crushed and then that same attacker get thrown across the room.
  • Layton looks up and sees Bishop grab a third attacker and toss him across the room. The other two attackers then turn to fight Bishop. Bishop grabs both attackers by their collars and lifts them in the air. He smashes their heads together, then sends them flying across the room. All the attackers are knocked out on the floor. Bishop helps Layton up.
  • Layton thanks Bishop. Bishop tells Layton that being the number one man has made him the prime target for all would-be Ceasars. Layton tells him that keeping order is not simple. Bishop says that human civilization without exception deteriorates into chaos. The art of it all is to stave off the inevitable for as long as possible. Bishop invites Layton to come over later for coffee and he will have someone there to help him create order. Layton says, “Yes” and asks who it is. Bishop answers, “Melanie!” Then he walks away.
  • On Big Alice, Wilford asks Audrey what happened with Bishop. She answers that nothing happened. Wilford asks how that is possible. She tells him that Bishop was not manipulatable and that the only one he allows to “Bewitch” him is Melanie. Wilford is disappointed. He hoped to get more insight into Bishop’s past and current state of mind.
  • Audrey asks Wilford what he plans to do. He tells her that there is a Plan B. She asks him if the plan involves Alex. He says “No.” There is a simpler way to get Bishop out of the way and that he will reveal it when the Cavills come to dinner. Wilford bends down, and with a cutsie voice as he pets his dog, says, “Isn’t that right?! Isn’t that right?!” Audrey just watches Wilford with aversion.
  • Later in the dining car, Layton tells Melanie and Bishop about some of the difficulties he’s been dealing with since the revolution. Melanie says that through the grapevine she’s been made aware of much that has transpired. She empathizes. Layton tells them that he’s getting input from everyone and that much of it makes sense in theory but in practical use most of it falls short. He would like any insight.
  • Melanie tells Layton that the train is living and breathing. Anything that happens at one end affects the other. He must determine which end is the priority. But, whatever he chooses, there will always be both dissatisfaction and consequences. She really hopes that he finds a way to bring harmony because she never did. It was always a balancing act, every day.
  • As they talk, Ruth walks in with a communique. She begs everyone’s pardon and says she has a message from Wilford for Bishop. She hands him the envelope and he reads it. Bishop tells Melanie that Wilford would like them over for dinner at 7:00.
  • Bishop asks Melanie if she’s available. She smiles and says, “Yes!” He instructs Ruth to inform Wilford that they will be there. She takes back the envelope and says she will send the response. She leaves.
  • Bishop tells Layton that they will have to continue their conversation later. Layton says he understands. He stands up and shakes Melanie’s and Bishop’s hands. Melanie tells him that all he can do is the best that he can. Layton thanks them again and then excuses himself.
  • Later that evening on Big Alice, Wilford, Audrey, Alex, Melanie and Bishop have dinner. Wilford expresses his thanks for their coming. He reminisces about the time when they all met. How they started the whole train and rail project together. He is saddened how far apart they all have ended up. Bishop says that it was only happenstance that delayed the train’s societal collapse. Wilford agrees.


  • Wilford shares that there is something that just might bring about its rebuilding. He proceeds to tell everyone that he received a distress signal from the Uluru Station in Australia. He had hoped that he would have been in control of Snowpiercer by now so as to prepare an expedition of some kind. Current circumstances prevent that; so, he must make a special request of the “First Family” for a joint expedition.
  • Melanie questions the authenticity of Wilford’s claim. Wilford tells her that they can confirm it for themselves. Melanie turns to Alex who gets up and goes to the instruments. Alex confirms the signal. She tells Melanie that it is authentic and then returns to her seat.
  • Wilford proceeds to tell them that he had planned to send Icy Bob or Josie. He also informs them that they are still not adapted enough to endure the journey. Since the installation is at the south end of the Northern Territory, Wilford quietly adds, “Now, there is a way.”
  • At hearing this, Alex exclaims, “NO!” Wilford says that at this point, it is the only way. Audrey asks Alex what Wilford means. Bishop offers her the answer. He tells Audrey that the snowmobiles and snow suits they have may burn out before anyone can reach the installation. The only one who may have a chance to reach it is him.
  • Wilford says that with Bishop’s ability to endure the cold, he is their best chance to look into who might have sent the signal and also to retrieve any of the atmospheric data that has specifically been gathered there at Uluru.
  • Alex tells Wilford that they can find another way to get this done. Bishop answers that there is no other way. Melanie concurs. Wilford says since they are all in agreement all that is left to do is to set a departure time. Wilford smiles at everyone. Audrey sits quietly. Bishop looks at Alex and gives her a wink. He turns to Melanie and blows her a kiss.
  • As everyone sits in silence, Bishop tells them that the night is still young and to finish their dinners. Everyone begins eating again. As they eat, Wilford asks Bishop if he would like to play a game of chess after dinner. Bishops says that he only plays Backgammon.


Click here to return to Part I of “ODE TO MELANIE IN THREE PARTS” – “MERRY CHRISTMAS.”