Well written. Fascinating. Visually stunning. Pick one. Pick them all. Before the credits had even finished rolling I was hooked on this new beauty from Frank Spotnitz.
Hit the jump for the full review.
Based on the novel by Philip K. Dick (Blade Runner, Total Recall, Minority Report), The Man in the High Castle takes place in an America where the Axis powers have won World War II by dropping the bomb on Washington DC; Germany controls the east, Japan controls the West, and a neutral buffer zone between the two exists in the center of the country.
The premise is disturbing and the mood dark. Nazi's with American accents can be nothing but disturbing, and the general public seems apathetic at best to the situation. A particularly gruesome and yet understated scene shows us the ashes of the crippled and terminally ill falling like snow. And yet as bad as things are, they're about to get worse. Hitler is rumored to be suffering from Parkinson's, and it seems that when he dies his successors will be all too eager to pull out the bomb again and nuke Japan right back off the American map.
We follow Joe Blake (Luke Kleintank), as he drives a mysterious package cross-country for the resistance. Meanwhile in the west, much to her boyfriend Frank Fink's (Rupert Evans) chagrin, Juliana Crain (Alexa Davalos) takes up the crusade and goes underground with her own package after Japanese police kill her sister. There are hints that all is not what it seems and that the mystery of the show revolves around the 'Man in the High Castle'. The two protagonists meet in the middle and the pilot ends in a gasp-worthy twist.
The production values and cinematography are simply gorgeous and while some suspension of belief is required to enjoy this alternate history storyline, The Man in the High Castle shows a whole lot of promise. Amazon would be crazy not to pick this one up for a full series order.
The Man in the High Castle is available for viewing now on Amazon Prime to residents of the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. No Prime membership is required to view the all of the new pilots, so head on over and check them out. Make sure to leave a review if you like the shows since their pickup depends on audience reaction.