|Date 1982||Publisher Casterman|
|Writers Jacques LobJean-Marc Rochette|
Editors Jacques Lob, Benjamin Legrand
Le Transperceneige ([lə tʁɑ̃spɛʁs.nɛʒ], The Snow-Piercer) is a science fiction post-apocalyptic French graphic novel created by Jacques Lob and Jean-Marc Rochette, and published by Casterman. The graphic novel was first published in 1982 under the title Le Transperceneige, and later retitled The Escape. The series was continued in two volumes by writer Benjamin Legrand, replacing Jacques Lob, with The Explorers published in 1999 and The Crossing in 2000.
An English translation was released in 2014 by Titan Comics, consisting of two volumes: Snowpiercer: The Escape and Snowpiercer: The Explorers; though the second volume only makes mention of The Explorers in its title, it also contains The Crossing.
After an environmental catastrophe induces an ice age, humanity occupies a 1,001-car train called the Snowpiercer. As the story begins, a man named Proloff is quarantined after escaping from the rearmost cars, and is joined by a woman named Adeline Belleau: herself part of a movement to integrate the members of the back railway cars, who live in squalid conditions, into the rest of the train. Trying to rescue Proloff, Belleau is placed under quarantine with him. The two are eventually called to meet Colonel Krimson, passing through several different cars of the train. As they advance, Proloff and Belleau observe fresh fruit, vegetables, and meat, luxuries which they believed extinct.
Krimson explains to Proloff and Belleau that the Snowpiercer has begun to slow down, and asks Proloff and Belleau's assistance in advancing the occupants of the rear of the train, to enable the rear cars' disconnection. Belleau and the members of her group agree, but Proloff learns that Krimson intends to disconnect the rear cars while his friends are aboard them. After warning Belleau's friends, Belleau and Proloff flee to the front of the train, pursued by the military. At the same time a virus, ostensibly spread by Proloff, is infecting others aboard the train, and the healthy advance to the front.
Before reaching the engine of the Snowpiercer, Proloff breaks all the windows in the final car. Belleau dies of the cold while Proloff is rescued by Alec Forrester, the engineer behind the Snowpiercer, who appoints him caretaker of 'Olga', the engine. As they are talking, the rear cars are disconnected. Proloff does replace Forrester as Olga's guardian, but realizes that the virus has killed everyone else on board and that his own days are numbered as the train cannot run forever.
After losing contact with the Snowpiercer, those aboard a second train fear a collision, and send several explorers on a braking exercise, where they stop the train. Only one returns alive, and soon disappears. Seventeen years later, Puig Vallès joins one of the now semi-regular braking exercises to avoid collision with the Snowpiercer. When accused of murdering one of his fellow explorers, he is sent on a suicide mission in a small plane but survives; after threatening to crash land his plane in front of the train, he is hailed as a hero. The elites then reveal that the first braking mission was to take the Snowpiercer, and that the sole survivor is Proloff, who only talks to the engine. They maintain the myth that the Snowpiercer is out of control and still circling the world, to control the populace with fear.