The Man in the High Castle on Amazon Prime

Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by xxmagex, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. Skallagrim Not the one from YouTube. Different other fellow.

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2014
    I think you're completely misinterpreting the character. Smith is not at all a serial killer type. It's much worse. He's a fairly normal fellow, who under OTL circumstances would be a regular world war II verteran and a loving (though rather stern) family man. But in this ATL reality? He becomes something else entirely. Assuming that he is inherently this monster completely misses the point, which is that he represents the monstrous potential in all of us. Under the 'right' circumstances, people who would be basically decent in OTL will instead give in to their darkest impulses-- because it benefits them, because it keeps their family safe and affluent... because it's just so god-damn easy.

    Smith is (metaphorically) the embodiment of the idea "if Hitler had won, we'd all be speaking German". Being a Nazi would just be normal, being anything else would be a deviation. One that may well get you killed, or at least destroys all possibility of social advancement, job promotion etc. -- Whereas being a competent military man (a traith the Nazis value), of pure Aryan stock, gives you the exact right position to advance under the "New Order". Just as long as you're willing to shut down your conscience and get started on gassing all blacks, jews, homosexuals etc. etc.

    The point being made is that the vast majority of humans would look the other way, just as the vast majority of Germans (not Nazis at all) looked the other way. And men like Smith -- though by no means destined to be evil psychopaths, but career military men, who've seen extensive combat and are already desinsitsed to brutal slaughter -- well, it's almost inevatible that a good number of them become Nazi butchers in a world where Hitler conquers the world. And in OTL, he'd just be your polite neighbour John, who hosts the annual barbeque and takes the lads fishing on the weekend. He'd likely be horrified by the Nazi version of himself, because -- like all of us living in a comfortable, 'normal' world -- he'll have convinced himself that he'd never do such things. But he would. And so would most other people.
     
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  2. Midnight-Blue766 The filidh that cam frae Skye

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    Oct 25, 2011
    I know that "serial killer" isn't the most accurate ("I'm not saying he's the one who would just kill for the hell of it"— I thought I put up a more explicit disclaimer saying the "serial killer" comparison isn't the most accurate, but I guess I decided not to). I probably failed to express the banality of evil in his character in my post— one of the most chilling scenes in the episode is how he has this normal breakfast with his standard-issue 1950s family before going off to torture prisoners, but I tried to convey that sense that he isn't an intrinsic psycho, but one who casts away all morality if it means being an obedient to his commanders ("if he received orders from high command to strangle his wife and children to death with his own two hands, I would bet all my money that he would, and he wouldn't even have a hint of remorse while doing it"); it's just that I had difficulty trying to express it it in words and came up with the "serial killer" metaphor to convey that sense of cold ruthlessness he carries out his atrocities.

    Your analysis of Smith actually reminds me of my reading of the real life memoirs of Wehrmacht soldier Willy Peter Reese, "A Stranger to Myself". He talks with a total candidness of the atrocities, like sexually abusing Russian women, driving civilians from their homes, etc. but at the same time, you can tell he's a very poetic, erudite individual, and I actually mentioned in a conversation that if you pulled Reese from a TL where the war never happened, he would have been horrified at the crimes he committed. The sense of "the banality of evil" that he conveys is actually a theme I've been wanting to convey in my own writing.

    A fanfic where OTL Smith somehow becomes aware of his Nazi self and vice versa would actually be very interesting.
     
  3. REDrake Member

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    Mar 26, 2017
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    Bucharest, Romania
    No need for that. Likely in the next season, we'll get to see the heroine meet such a person in another world.
     
  4. paddbear Vermonter

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2005
    Location:
    Vermont
    This is related to the world of The Man in the High Castle --

    CBC News reports on a startling book purchased by Library and Archives Canada

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/hitler-book-library-and-archives-canada-1.4989961

    A book that once belonged to Adolf Hitler — and sheds light on the Nazis' plans for North America had the Second World War gone the other way — is now in the collection of Library and Archives Canada (LAC).

    The book, entitled Statistik, Presse und Organisationen des Judentums in den Vereinigten Staaten und Kanada (Statistics, Press, and Organizations of Jewry in the United States and Canada), is a detailed census of Jewish populations and organizations in North American cities.

    "This information would have been the building blocks to rolling out the Final Solution in Canada," said LAC curator Michael Kent.

    The book covers the USA and Canada.
     
  5. Athelstane Anglo-Saxon Troublemaker

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    Jun 8, 2011
    Trailer drops for the final Season of The Man in the High Castle.

     
  6. Mister Abbadon Well-Known Member

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    the abyss
    How will Amazon prime Justify its existence now?
     
  7. Athelstane Anglo-Saxon Troublemaker

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    Jun 8, 2011
    Well, there's still The Expanse...
     
  8. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    Southern Idaho
    Eh... I could never get into it.

    Maybe they could do some space western or a video game adaptation, would love to see a Mass Effect or Bioshock tv series.
     
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  9. xxmagex Well-Known Member

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    Oct 13, 2007
    Question, was that Russians soldiers about thirty seconds into the trailer?
     
  10. Athelstane Anglo-Saxon Troublemaker

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    Jun 8, 2011
    There's also the new Lord of the Rings spinoff series they're spending a billion bucks on, but - as much of a Tolkien fan as I am - it's sight unseen at this point.

    I admit that none of the other Amazon Original Series really tickle my fancy.
     
  11. Pelranius Well-Known Member

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    Jun 26, 2018
    Think they were Wehrmacht soldiers of a sort.
     
  12. lordroel Well-Known Member

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    Aug 25, 2006
    Armed with Thompson machine guns, could be Resistance members.
     
  13. stirlingdraka Female Draka Defector Donor

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    European Union Northern Ireland
    Four seasons for TMITHC is a pretty good run for an AH tv series. I`ll make up my mind fully after I`ve seen season 4.
     
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  14. rvbomally Austere Religious Scholar

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    Dec 13, 2008
    Almost certainly resistance. I doubt any Russians will show up, outside of archival footage.
     
  15. lordroel Well-Known Member

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    Aug 25, 2006
    Unless the Soviets have found a way to invade The Man in the High Castle Earth.
     
  16. rvbomally Austere Religious Scholar

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    Dec 13, 2008
    Even if they did, I doubt the show would focus on it.
     
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  17. President Earl Warren Well-Known Member

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    Jul 19, 2017
    Why not? A massive inter dimensional war would be a interesting thing to explore.
     
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  18. Mister Abbadon Well-Known Member

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    Oct 10, 2009
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    the abyss
    I was always kind of Afraid/hoping for the show would eventually become the main cast traveling to a whole bunch of different alternate worlds and slowly being replaced by alternate Versions of themselves

    Like OTL John Smith and Joe Blake,TTL Juliana Crane and Tagomi, and maybe versions of Kido and Frank Frink from another universe entirely having adventures would be a schlocky mess but I'd watch it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2019
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  19. rvbomally Austere Religious Scholar

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    Dec 13, 2008
    Because the show is about the experience of an occupied America. Shifting the focus for the last season makes no sense.
     
  20. Polish Eagle AntiFa Supersoldier

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    Apr 11, 2009
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    Where the skies are so blue
    Also the last season closed with an explanation of why such a war is impractical—you can only send through people who are dead in the other reality. Depending on how advanced Generalplan Ost is ITTL, the Soviets might pull that off...or their soldiers still have, at best, a 50/50 chance of getting through without melting.

    No, that door is closed, I think.