Mrs. The Paladin and I just finished watching Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle and to be honest we only really like half of it. Based off a Phillip K. Dick of the same name, this is a world where the Allied Forces lost the Second World War and now the United States in divided between the German Reich in the east and Japan in the west with a Neutral Zone between them in the Rockies.
Adolf Hitler is still Fuhrer in 1962 but he is aging and the world seems on the brink of another war. Our plucky protagonists obtain a film that show the world as we know it (‘MERICA!) and one of them embarks on a journey to discover how they are made and who is the Man in the High Castle; the other is a Nazi tool or a tool that also happens to be a Nazi or both. There are other characters and some of them are interesting, but for the most part they all run around and yell at each other for making stupid mistakes while making stupid mistakes of their own – all while not really doing anything.
The first half is the more interesting as it deals with more of the intrigue between the two powers and the uneasy truce between them. There is also more danger and intrigue in the “main” story line this first half as well.
What kept me watching was less the main story and more the world. The supporting cast is excellent as well, especially the phenomenal performances by this excellent actor:
Cary-Hiroyuki “Zylyn“ Tagawa as the peace-loving Trade Minister of the Pacific States
and of course this guy:
Rufus “Dark City” Sewell as Obergruppenfuhrer Smith of the Greater Nazi Reich, New York.
I wish the show was more about them and their plans than the other people.
I expect this will get picked up for a second season that hopefully will be more balanced and make a little more sense. Its of course not all bad and we wouldn’t have kept watching if we didn’t think it was worth our time, we were just left annoyed with the main characters and scratching our heads about others. I think there is gold here, they just need to dig a little deeper.