To say Amazon's The Man in the High Castle is complex and thought-provoking is a massive understatement. The series, based on Philip K. Dick's award-winning novel, returns for season two on December 16th to explore the frightening thought: What if? In an alternate universe post-WWII, Allied Powers lose the war and the United States is ruled by Japan and Nazi Germany. The show's protagonist, Juliana Crain (Alexa Davalos), holds on to a flicker of hope provided by reels depicting an alternate reality and thus, a movement of resistance. The tapes lead to one figure: The man in the high castle. The buildup of learning who the allusive man is has characters and fans readily invested. Davalos and her co-stars promise that with the man's reveal in season two, the audience will feel one hell of a release, but will also embark on a wild ride.
The mysterious figure is just one of the intricate layers to be peeled back this season, and fans already know that Stephen Root will play the man behind the movement. I sit across from Root and Davalos, who reflectively explain how relieved fans will be come episode one. "When [Juliana] finally meets him, it’s like this pinnacle moment and what he says is gospel for her," says Davalos.
As a newcomer on the show, Root knows how his role will impact audiences. "They'll be happy, they finally get to see a physical presence." Rupert Evans, who plays Frank Fink, promises the reveal will enrich the story. "Now the fans will get some answers and some understanding, they can assess what this man is and what his own motivations are." Davalos explains how fans are on the ride with her character. "Similarly to Juliana, they want those answers, they’re on a similar journey. Trying to figure out what the hell is going on," she adds.
And although it will be huge payoff getting a face to match the name, the cast ensures it may open another Pandora's box. "It's all very nebulous as to what’s happening with [his] relationship [with Juliana]," Root explains. Luke Kleintank, who plays a conflicted SS agent, suggests that fans will become more curious after the reveal. "At first you’re gonna hate him but at the same time, you’re gonna wonder. He’s a wonder, that man. You’ll see," the actor explains. It's very similar to the big reveal in The Wizard of Oz, according to Joel de la Fuente, who plays Inspector Kido.
"Knowing who the man in the high castle is proves to be a more complicated question than just seeing a person sitting there," he explains. "Sort of like he Wizard of Oz... [he] means something different to everybody who’s looking for him." It will be a bit of an emotional rollercoaster, to say the least.
Luckily, the cast has fans' backs, with aids to get them through the intense season. "Tissues," says Davalos. Root chimes in with, "Tequila." Other recommendations for binge-watching sessions include: lots of snacks, something to hide behind, "a good bowl of cereal" (from producer David W. Zucker), a snuggly blanket, and a loved one.
If a great bowl of cereal doesn't enhance your experience of the man's big reveal, I don't know what will.
Images: Amazon (2)