The Man in the High Castle

I watched this over the weekend and I really enjoyed it. This is my favorite Philip K. Dick novel and I am so happy someone finally adapted this to the screen. I always thought it would make a better feature film or mini-series rather than a full series, but I'm not complaining.

In case you are not familiar, the premise is the Axis powers won WWII, and it is now 1962 Nazi/Japanese-occupied U.S. So we're dealing with an alternative history here.

I'm not sure I'm all in on the actors cast (I had a completely different vision of Juliana while reading the book). There are also already a lot of changes from the book. But if you have Amazon Prime, it's definitely worth checking out the pilot. I really hope it gets picked up.


  • This seems pretty cool. I shalt be watching it. Thanks for the info. What network did this air on?
  • That's the thing. It's on Amazon Prime. I'm not sure a lot of people subscribe to this yet.
  • AntManBee said:

    That's the thing. It's on Amazon Prime. I'm not sure a lot of people subscribe to this yet.

    Find a friend and borrow like I do :-)
  • Watched it. Didn't care for it, and kind of offensive. I'll pass.

    By the way whats they deal with these Amazon pilots? Is it some sorta contest or something?
  • I think they strongly consider the amount of votes it receives, but they ultimately make the decision themselves.

    What was offensive about it?
  • I'm with @AntManBee - I really enjoyed this one. The production design was kinda impressive. But they definitely need to upgrade the acting talent.
  • Is this a 'serious' story or is it tongue-in-cheek at all?

    If it's serious then I have an issue with its premise. If Germany defeated the Allied forces in WWII it would've meant they had a viable way to invade and conquer the UK, which would mean that after going through Russia they would almost certainly have continued onward to Japan. There is no way they would be sharing power with them in 1962, and with by far their most dangerous enemy defeated there's nothing Japan would've been able to do to stop them.

    The Nazis had a Mongol Empire-like disposition towards the world with a heaping dose of racial superiority. They were quite serious about their 1000 year Reich and the thought of them subjugating a culture so wildly different theirs would be bad news bears for said culture...
  • edited February 2015
    @ghm3 The show hasn't gotten into this very much so far, but the book goes into a lot of detail of how this could have happened. As far as the partnership with Japan, it's a very uneasy one as portrayed in the book. There is much speculation throughout the plot that the reich has plans to wipe out Japan with a hydrogen bomb.

    And Hitler and the Nazis had what they called 'honorary aryans'. The Japanese were given this status. Hitler himself wrote in his political testament about this:

    "Pride in one's own race – and that does not imply contempt for other races – is also a normal and healthy sentiment. I have never regarded the Chinese or the Japanese as being inferior to ourselves. They belong to ancient civilizations, and I admit freely that their past history is superior to our own. They have the right to be proud of their past, just as we have the right to be proud of the civilization to which we belong. Indeed, I believe the more steadfast the Chinese and the Japanese remain in their pride of race, the easier I shall find it to get on with them."
  • @AntManBee Yeah true enough, but I've always interpreted this as nonsense they created to excuse the event of them logistically not being able to take out a large enough civilization. There's no sense poking the Japanese Empire with a stick too when you already have problems closer to home, so meaningless platitudes can't hurt at that stage of their interaction. Also, it's not like they would or could literally exterminate every race but theirs across the entire world, so they needed an excuse in place to justify keeping the remaining populace that they would in whatever region they conquer. This gives them that 'out,' but I've always seen it as basically similar to Hitler's treaty with Russia.
  • @DancesWithWookies what did you find offensive about it?
  • Part of this pilot seems like a prequel.

    Its been 2 years since I read the book but its like im watching 90% of this for the first time.

    Without giving any spoilers, does anybody else agree?
  • @Jovial_Falcon A lot of changes were made from the book so far - particularly how the book never had any scenes in the Nazi-occupied eastern U.S. I'm hoping they bring more elements of the book back for the new episodes.
  • edited November 2015
    4 more days until the 1st Season drops. I'm pretty excited
  • I only watched the pilot back during the initial voting and, while I like the premise and the book, I was not all that high on the acting. I said this in another forum, but I also really wish they had been able to have the Germans speaking German with other Germans and the Japanese speaking Japanese with Japanese as opposed to everyone speaking English. I understand logistically it would be hard to do and a wide audience doesn't want to read subtitles, but the immersion suffers a bit for me.

    Still, I plan on watching the series and seeing where they take it. I have no problems with book changes as long as they keep the feel and spirit of the book. Kind of like Children of Men, which is very different from the book, but still a good adapation in my opinion.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    The second episode was pretty good too. There's a lot of potential here. Ready to dive in.
  • Has anyone finished this yet? I recently binged the whole season, but I think I need a little time to digest it. Not quite sure what to think of it yet. The thing that stands out to me is how impressive Rufus Sewell's facial expressions are, given the amount of plastic surgery he got done.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    Still watching I have a couple more episodes. I am really enjoying it. Fascinated on all the secrets people keep from each other and the lack of freedom to do anything. The paranoia and suspense is well done too. The guy who plays Frank is really good too.
  • UnderwoodUnderwood Philadelphia, PA
    Just picked up prime yesterday. Excited to give this a try!
  • @Elisa It's funny, I like the guy who played Frank the least (of the main actors). I didn't think any of them did a phenomenal job, but it's a solid overall performance. I saw Alexa Davalos (Juliana) in Mob City as well, which was set in the 40's, and I think she just has this classic beauty that suits both time periods so well. All the make-up, hairstyles and clothes go so naturally with her, it's like she was born to play parts like these. Sometimes you see actresses playing characters from a long time ago and they stick out like a sore thumb. I think Alexa is perfect for roles like this.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    I don't like Frank but I think he is acting the hell outta his role.  Of course the big shots, - Sewell, Tagawa, Norgaard are solid.  I do like Davalos and De la Fuente but the guy who plays Joe - Kleintank is not as convincing in the role for me.  The recurring casts like Roebuck (her step dad) Rick Worthy (Lem from the resistance) and Gorman (maniac sheriff) were solid as well.  The look, costumes, settings are just awesome too.
  • I'm finishing up the last episode as I type this and have really enjoyed it. It's not life changing television but it falls somewhere between Leftovers, Fargo quality and broadcast television dreck. 
  • I wanted to love this so much. It's right up my alley. I love counterfactuals in history. (As a quick aside, if you like that type of thing, I highly recommend the Extension 720/Milt Rosenberg podcast - particularly his numerous WWII subject casts).

    That said, it didn't work for me. The two leads bored me. The best aspect to me was the Nazi Leave It To Beaver aspect. I didn't hate it but it felt like a chore to get through.
  • @DrKen I did feel pretty much the same for some of the episodes but for the most part I did like the series.  The end has me intrigued and I am looking forward to a second season.  
  • I'd love to see what Jim and Aaron think of this, especially since they both seem to be history buffs of some sort.  I'm only a couple of episodes in, but so far it's definitely interesting.  It's also a VERY good looking show, imo.  I suppose I'll come back and give my take when I'm done, but so far, its intriguing.
  • @Toadie Thanks for your thoughts. I'm looking forward to hearing what you think when you finish.

    Overall, I thought it was strong, but I agree with @DrKen it did feel like a chore at times.
  • PcherryPcherry Auburn, AL
    I'm h
  • PcherryPcherry Auburn, AL
    i'm half way through and think it's good. But just can't wrap my brain around it possibly ever happening. Another country invading us and fighting the generation that was living through the Great Depression, who were tough as nails. We would have kicked their ass.
  • @Pcherry This is an alternate history, why think about if it could have happened in real life? In the book, and so I assume in the show, WWII didn't quite happen like it did irl so it makes sense how the world ended up. Been a while since I saw this, so can't remember how much they explain, but if you read the book there are bits here and there you can piece together to see why it is the way it is. Or you can read a denser version of it on wikipedia here.
  • Season 2 has dropped - I'm hyped, the first season was really pretty good.
  • Thx @Doctor_Nick. I forgot it was today. Im getting snowed in this weekend so I'll have plenty of time
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