‘Snowpiercer’: Alison Wright on Ruth’s Loyalties and Being in a Situation ‘She Never Ever’ Expected
If you think Snowpiercer was chaos before, you’re in for a surprise when things kick up a notch heading into Season 2’s final two installments of Season 2, which run back to back on Monday, March 29.
Now with a rogue Mr. Wilford (Sean Bean) at the helm of the never-ending train ride and Layton (Daveed Diggs) imprisoned aboard Big Alice, hospitality head Ruth (Alison Wright) is left holding the bag. TV Insider talked to Wright about the possible danger Wilford poses, Ruth’s loyalties without Melanie (Jennifer Connelly) around to intervene, and more ahead of the Season 2 finale.
Heading into the finale episodes, what’s Ruth’s mindset?
Alison Wright: Her guard is definitely up. Since he arrived at the beginning of the season, she’s seeing a different man than she thought she knew all those years ago. The thought that he’s purposely sabotaged the train is totally unthinkable. She’s in a terrifying spot of trying to understand who this monster now in control is. When he does take the train at the end of Episode 8 and Layton has to surrender it, I think they’re in really dangerous waters and she’s just trying not to let Wilford know too much.
We’ve seen Ruth resist Wilford’s job advances this season. Is this dangerous for her?
That resistance is potentially dangerous, yes. He could have her strung up at any point, but also the people that she’s trying to team up with, in terms of Layton and the engineers. Ruth has a good relationship with the brakemen, but the other people, I don’t think she feels trusted by them. She’s pretty culpable for all the terrible things that have happened so far in the story and the life of Snowpiercer. So she can’t expect that all those people are going to forgive her now that she’s seen the error of her ways.
Ruth’s working relationship with Layton has been a big part of Season 2. Will that bond influence her decision making?
Definitely. I think it’s all thrown her for a loop. She finds comfort in having order and believes that rules will help things run smoothly. But now she’s seeing that Layton is a good man, and so much more mounting evidence that Wilford is not. It’s breaking her brain a little bit. She’s in way over her head.
At first, it seemed Ruth’s allegiance was to Wilford. Would you say that it’s actually to the passengers and even, possibly, to Melanie?
Yeah, it’s all of those things. Things were running smoothly. Melanie was doing it, but it was through Wilford’s will, wasn’t it? She’s trying to figure out how much of it was even Wilford. In Season 1, Wilford and the train and hospitality were all one thing for her. And then in Season 2, she does say quite a few times, “I work for the train. I’m here for the train, not the man.” She’s not in love and lust with the man. She’s in love with hospitality and doing her job and looking after the train.
Hospitality is Ruth’s whole life. How will it be impacted under Wilford’s charge?
I think hospitality can only exist in a way that Wilford says it can. The department’s barely a department anymore. Melanie’s not there. Layton’s girlfriend is now in hospitality, which makes it a bit dicey as well for Ruth to have someone to trust. It’s like a dictatorship and we’re all going to have to do whatever he tells us.
Ruth is very regimented. Will we ever see her loosen up and let her hair down?
Not by choice. I can say that she’s going to end up in a position that she never ever thought she [would be in]. And in a place on the train where she’s not going to need to have her hair done.
Have we seen all that Snowpiercer has to offer, or are there still places on the train left to uncover?
We always say there are new cars and bowels of the train that we haven’t discovered yet. Places where Ruth would definitely not be able to get her nails done.
Snowpiercer, Season 2 Two-Hour Finale, Monday, March 29, 9/8c, TNT