War and Family
The episode begins with our first look at John Smith in another world. He’s smiling and mugging for the camera, his arm around Thomas or dancing with Helen on a pier. Our John Smith stares hungrily at the film footage.
Thanks to video surveillance, the Nazis know that Juliana and Wyatt were part of the deadly shooting at their border. John orders them to be taken alive. He receives a call from Trade Minister Tagomi requesting a private meeting in the Neutral Zone. Tagomi says they are aware of the device the Nazis are building and he wants to avoid war between their nations. While not thrilled by this news, Himmler tells John to accept the meeting and use the opportunity to search the Neutral Zone for the Man in the High Castle. For that reason, John tells Tagomi they will meet in Hawthorne’s old house.
Looking more like her old self, Helen invites her friends over to her swanky place for a morning drink. But Helen isn’t acting like her old self. She whispers about Hitler’s mistress and rumors of Goebbels’ deformed foot, all talk that could get her arrested. However, all of the women agree that Reich members in Germany are far more protected than those in America.
As John packs to leave for the Neutral Zone, he holds Thomas’ shirt to his face. He informs Helen he has postponed their daughter’s medical test until he comes back. But of course, the nurse shows up the next day anyway. Just as she is about to insert the needle, Helen stops her. She insists on doing the test once John is back in town and sends the nurse away. Then she takes the girls with her on an impromptu trip to a beach house.
While waiting for Tagomi to arrive, John finds a photo of Hawthorne and Caroline and recognizes them from one of the films. That night, John and Tagomi meet. The Trade Minister, knowing what it feels like to lose a son, offers condolences for Thomas’ death. He tells John that he provided the film they used to avert war before and he hopes they can prevent it again now. He confesses to visiting other worlds and says it is possible to do without technology. In return for the Reich honoring their treaties with Japan, including the oil treaty, Tagomi offers a list of Nazi defectors hiding in the Pacific States.
The next day, Nazis ambush Caroline at her new home and shoot all of the men protecting her. John approaches the wounded woman and asks where her husband is.
Wyatt and Juliana find some relative safety at a bar filled with Wyatt’s friends. One of them is someone Juliana recognizes from her other world memories. They show the friends the film and get rave responses but people are still asking what saving another reality does to help them and their own. Which is a pretty crappy attitude but also understandable. Expressing that Juliana has given him something to fight for, Wyatt convinces one friend to join them on the journey to Lackawanna, where they meet up with two more friends. The group takes a short hike through the forest and easily finds the Nazi fortress hidden there. By studying maps of the mines, they are able to find a secret way in to spy on what the Reich is doing.
A Last Act of Resistance
Under cover of darkness, Frank and Ed gleefully paint Resistance graffiti around Denver. Ed goes off to visit Jack who quickly tells him the Yakuza are looking for him and that Childan called. When Ed calls Childan himself, his former business partner tells him to leave town immediately and to tell Frank to do the same. But it’s too late. When Ed meets Frank in the morning, Kido is right there to take Frank into custody.
They drive out to the site of a former Japanese internment camp. Kido was one of the people who was liberated from the camp in 1945. Next to the site is a huge rock with one of Frank’s designs painted on it. The two men have a quiet conversation about mistakes they’ve made. Frank says he never thought he would survive blowing up the building and therefore never thought about what taking all of those lives meant. Kido admits it was his own fault because he let Frank leave his custody before. He also takes responsibility for killing Frank’s sister, niece, and nephew, which he super did.
As Frank stares out at the rocky terrain, Kido returns to the car and changes into his uniform. Without being told, Frank kneels and prays in Hebrew. With a swift swing of his sword, Kido beheads him.
- Before he left, Tagomi met again with Mrs. Watanabe to apologize. He feels bad that she was nearly hurt or killed by the Reich’s assassin. But she doesn’t care and kisses him. After a pause, he kisses her back.
- Sampson approaches the bounty hunters in a bar and pretends to congratulate them on killing a Jewish man. Then he teases them that their ability to “smell” Jews must be pretty bad because there’s one at their table right now. And then he shoots them dead.
- Billy was able to get Thelma out of jail and clean up things with the press but he’s irritated beyond belief. When it’s obvious Thelma is still pining, he snarls at her to stay away from Nicole.
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