Saturday, December 31, 2016

Marvelously Brilliant

A Review of The Man in the High Castle

Historical fiction (together with science fiction) forms the majority of my literary interests. I have often said however, that most historical fiction is quite crude, based on just a handful of facts and a large dollop of anachronistic fiction - some authors prefer to mix American slang with ancient Rome! On top of that, when a book is adapted into a movie or TV show, it often undergoes enhanced degradation, having to reimagine the setting to suit modern audiences with little patience for nuance. Indeed, when it comes to predicting how good a work of historical fiction - whether a book or the adaptation - is, it is usually safe to err on the side of pessimism.

The Man in the High Castle, the award-winning series from Amazon, beat the odds. I don't even remember another instance of the adaptation being better researched and presented than the original material itself! Having seen Season 2 and the expansive usage of accurate Nazi history to reconstruct an entirely different scenario was wonderful to say the least. It was well-researched, no doubt, and it in fact went against the grain of the original novel by focusing on the Nazis as opposed to he Japanese, no doubt a challenge for he team building it. In the end, it came out marvelously, and I look forward to Season 3!

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