The Man in the High Castle Season 3 Episode 2: Imagine Manchuria Recap

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The title of episode 2 of The Man in the High Castle season 3, Imagine Manchuria, refers to a line Kido says to his would-be new assistant. If Nakamura thinks San Francisco weather is unpleasant in the winter (it tends toward cool and frequently rainy), imagine what it will be like when Kido turns on him and has him sent to Manchuria, which can be as cold as the Arctic in winter. In other words, things can always get worse.

This is the theme of the episode, as the solution to one problem inevitably causes a bigger problem down the line. If we don’t see the bigger problem in this episode, we’re likely seeing the set up for it. Helen solves the Smiths’ gossip problem one way, but now has a crime scene to deal with. John solves it another way, but now has an ongoing blackmail scheme to finesse at a time when he’s being watched very closely. Kido arrests Juliana, but also catches Trudy, who he executed in the opening scenes of season 1. The triumph of catching a Resistance operative is overshadowed by the mental discord of seeing a woman he knows to be dead, now inexplicably returned to life. And of being put in conflict with Tagomi once again.

Schemes within schemes are revealed within the Reich, until anyone who has any power there might wish they’d been sent to Manchuria. In addition to his other supersecret American operations, Himmler is playing Hoover and Rockwell against Smith, and it’s anyone’s guess which side he’ll favor in the end. Joe is a Lebensborn special operative who works directly for Himmler, apparently as an assassin, but his true purpose is unknown to almost everyone. Even Smith and the head of the Reich Embassy in San Francisco, who is ostensibly his boss, don’t know. And Himmler is a demanding, impatient taskmaster who accepts no excuses.

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Update: Sneak Peeks Added to Manifest Episode 5: Connecting Flights Post

The new clips can be found at Manifest S1 Ep5- Connecting Flights Promo [Updated with Videos].

NBC has released the preview clips for this week’s episode of Manifest, so I’ve added them, with commentary, to the post I put up earlier in the week, HERE.

 

Image courtesy of NBC.

The Man in the High Castle Season 3 Episode 1: Now More Than Ever, We Care About You Recap

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It’s been almost 2 years since we last visited with the residents of the Greater Nazi Reich, the Japanese Pacific States and the Neutral Zone, and things have changed both in the real and fictional worlds. The Man in the High Castle has undergone huge behind the scenes changes, including a new showrunner. So has Amazon’s television division. There has been turnover in the cast as well, and last season brought the end of the first “book” in the series.

This season starts a new long-term story arc. Let’s see if it’s worth the wait.

At the end of season 2, Juliana is in the Neutral Zone and reunited with her sister from another reality, Trudy, as the Man in the High Castle, Hawthorne Abendon, looks on. Frank and Sarah appear to be lost in the explosion they set in the San Francisco Kempeitai building to assassinate General Onoda. Kido and Tagomi survive the explosion. Kido gives Smith one of the movies that Tagomi brought back from an alternate Earth, as proof that Japan also has the bomb, in order to avoid nuclear war. Ed and Childan have left San Francisco on a bus bound for the Neutral Zone.

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Upcoming Supernatural Shows Part 2: Charlaine Harris’ Midnight, Texas [Videos]

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Midnight, Texas premiered as a summer show on NBC in 2017 with a 10 episode run and poor to mediocre ratings. Somehow, they were given a second season and moved to the fall- probably because of supernatural interference. Or an enthusiastic global and digital response to the show. Charlaine Harris has connections, y’all, she can make these things happen.

Ms Harris is the author of the wildly popular Southern Vampire Mystery series, otherwise known as the Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries/True Blood TV series. Midnight, Texas is currently a three novel series that takes place in the same universe as the Sookie Stackhouse novels. There are a few crossover characters in the books, though I don’t remember seeing any in season 1 of the TV show. They don’t arrive in town until the second book, so keep your eyes open this season. Last season combined storylines from the first and third books. So far it looks like season 2 will cover the second book.

Just like Sookie’s town of Bon Temps, LA,  the small southwestern town of Midnight, TX attracts outsiders, loners and misfits, especially those who are a little more than human. Midnight is sparsely populated, with barely enough permanent residents to even be called a town. It sits at a dusty crossroads with magical properties. The people who are drawn to settle there form a close-knit, protective community. They are slow to trust outsiders and don’t share secrets easily, but they are a force to be reckoned with when one of their own is threatened.

Season 1 begins when Manfred Bernardo, a psychic with true abilities, which he sometimes needs to fake for customers, drives his ancient RV bus into town on the advice of the ghost of his grandmother, Xylda. Manfred was mostly raised by Xylda and they’re still close. They’ve been able to remain close because Manfred sees dead people. Everywhere. Sometimes they possess his body, but only if he lets them. Manfred is on the run from Hightower, to whom he and Xylda owe(d) a large sum of money.

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Upcoming Supernatural Shows Part 1: Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina [Videos]

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Halloween is almost upon us and it’s time for some witchy fun! Next week, on Friday October 26, two relatively lighthearted supernatural series will join the pack. NBC’s Midnight, Texas, based on the book series by Charlaine Harris, author of True Blood/the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries, will return for season 2. And the entire first season of the Riverdale quasi spin off The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, from the same team who brought Archie, Veronica and Bughead to life, will debut on Netflix the same day.

In this post, let’s look at Sabrina, then I’ll make a second post for Midnight, Texas.

238px-chilling_adventuresof_sabrina_issue_2Sabrina is based on the teenage witch from the comics, most specifically from the comic series of the same name written by creator and showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who is also the showrunner for the CW’s Riverdale. It’s not connected to the 90s sitcom starring Melissa Joan Hart, though I imagine the writers won’t be able to resist throwing in some inside jokes.

The show stars Kiernan Shipka as Sabrina Spellman, a half human-half witch teenager who has a big decision to make on her 16th birthday. Lucy Davis plays Hilda Spellman, the more maternal of Sabrina’s two aunts, who act as her guardians. Miranda Otto plays Zelda Spellman, a fierce, protective witch who wants Sabrina to follow in her footsteps as a devotee of the Dark Lord. (Guess JK Rowling doesn’t own that phrase.) Ross Lynch is Harvey Kinkle, Sabrina’s sweet, clueless, human boyfriend, who has no idea what’s really going on in the town of Greendale, where Sabrina’s chilling adventures take place. The cast is rounded out by Jaz Sinclair, Michelle Gomez, Chance Perdomo, Richard Coyle, and Tati Gabrielle, who play various friends, allies and enemies of Sabrina.

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Manifest S1 Ep5- Connecting Flights Promo [Updated with Videos]

 

The end of episode promo is the only one out so far for next week’s episode of Manifest. If/when more sneak peeks are released, I’ll gather them in this post.

In the meantime, here’s a photo with Jared brooding over his map and Lourdes looking on. It’s good to see that Lourdes hasn’t been completely forgotten by Jared or the writers.

Episode description from NBC:

10/22/2018 (10:00PM – 11:00PM) (Monday) : Stories unfold for those left behind in the aftermath of Flight 828’s disappearance. Meanwhile in the present, Cal (Jack Messina) takes Ben (Josh Dallas) on a mysterious adventure that awakens Ben to his son’s perplexing abilities. Michaela (Melissa Roxburgh) tries to protect Jared (J.R. Ramirez) from consequences at work, while keeping her romantic feelings at bay. Also starring Athena Karkanis and Luna Blaise.

Promo after the jump.

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Manifest Season 1 Episode 4: Unclaimed Baggage Recap

 

This week’s episode of Manifest, Unclaimed Baggage, drew together Saanvi, Michaela and Flight Attendant Bethany to solve the mystery/case of the week: What happened to Bethany’s stowaway friend after the plane landed? They were an effective and appealing dream team, who I hope we get to see continue working together. Ben’s role in this case was to act as skeptic and briefly as driver.

What’s up with him being left out of the callings since the first episode?

Instead, Ben carried the family drama again, which this week centered around Olive’s adventures with shoplifting. Olive drew Danny back into the family mix, precipitating the overdue meeting between him and Ben. Or maybe it was just overdue that we met Danny. You can’t cast Daniel Sunjata, then keep him off my screen. At any rate, Grace is now officially a sketchy Femme Fatale in my book, and the Stones have gone from being a typical suburban family in the opening of the pilot to being a truly messed up suburban family.

Why is Grace a Femme Fatale? Not just because of the unexplained, secret strife that’s drawn her, Danny and Olive close enough together that they act like they’ve been through a war together. The other Stone family thread this week concerned Ben’s life insurance pay out of $500k, which the insurance company wants back, since he’s actually alive and all. Grace goes through a vague set of circumstances, most of them expected, and somehow comes up with having spent the entire half a million dollars already, in 5 years, on her and Olive. Plus all of the equity in their house.

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