Who Is ‘Snowpiercer’s Asha Really? Archie Panjabi Teases Her Season 3 Character

    Of all the improbable things that occur on Snowpiercer — set in a post-apocalyptic frozen wasteland where humanity exists on a perpetually moving train — Season 3 premiered January 24 with a doozy. Layton (Daveed Diggs) and his fellow insurrectionists on the breakaway train found a survivor out there: Asha, a former nuclear technician living alone in a bunker.

    Even more improbable is how new cast member Archie Panjabi (The Good Wife) prepped for the role of her wary, traumatized character. “I drew inspiration from my [real-life] four-legged friend Mr. Q, a rescue dog,” she reveals. “Nobody knew what had happened to him, but he was suspicious of everything, always watching and listening closely, ready to attack, even if he was being offered food.”

    Snowpiercer Season 3 Archie Panjabi and Daveed Diggs

    (Credit: TNT)

    Little is known about Asha either, although the actress calls her “intelligent, determined and obviously a survivor.” Does she have a link to malevolent dictator Mr. Wilford (Sean Bean), who’s seething aboard the other train, Big Alice, obsessed with reconnecting and ruling them all?

    “When she boards Snowpiercer, she asks if Mr. Wilford is the engineer,” Panjabi hints. “Asha is not aware of Snowpiercer and Big Alice operating independently and the power dynamics of the last few years.”

    What’s loud and clear is her declaration that she’s from New Eden, the supposed warming part of the planet near the Arabian peninsula that Layton desperately wants to find. “Asha is proof that New Eden exists,” Panjabi says, “giving hope of a future beyond the train.” Still, getting there is easier said than done.

    Snowpiercer, Mondays, 9/8c, TNT

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