The Castle

I finished Man In The High Castle!

It’s quite a strange experience, because it was a bit unsatisfactory but also probably more believable than the alternatives. There were a lot of storylines at the start of S1 but by the end they were focused mainly on two characters who were both bad people, but they were very well written and humanised. They weren’t really bad people exactly, but they did bad things. For complex reasons, some of which were very understandable. I’m not sure it would have been satisfying to give them a redemption arc, because they did do some pretty terrible things.

I suppose it’s a window into the concept of the Banality Of Evil, which roughly says that evil in real life is generally committed by relatively normal people doing relatively normal things. I sometimes feel guilty that I’m not a vegan because the amount of animal products I consume means I am indirectly responsible for a lot of animal suffering, and I have no doubt that some of the details I’ve avoided knowing are horrific. Yet I’m just a normal person, as are the people who run the industrial processes required to support it all. But that’s a different post.

The whole program was a bit strange really. I really loved the alternate history setting and the politics, but the character drama especially in S1 was a bit low quality and out of place. Things improved a lot when they started fleshing out the Smith family.

I think I would recommend it with the caveat that the first episode (or was it the first two?) is very grim.


I’ve been feeling a bit off lately, and at some point it suddenly occurred to me that I am probably getting anaemic again. I used to have problems with anaemia a few years ago. I started feeling very tired and a bit spaced out sometimes. Early anaemia symptoms are a bit vague. But I’ve sometimes been feeling a bit woozy after running, which is what really made me think “hmm”.

So I phoned up my doctor… I had to phone because they’ve disabled online booking “due to COVID”. Which makes no sense. And then I had to phone four times. The first three I was told that the queue was full, and on the fourth I apparently got put into the queue. It took 35 minutes in total to speak to someone. The earliest appointment they could give me was a telephone appointment, in four weeks time. What has gone wrong with my GP surgery?!

So anyway… That’s ridiculous and I’ve started self medicating iron tablets. Fortunately you can buy them over the counter. Iron overdose is a thing but from seeing my iron levels in the past I think I’m more likely to develop diabetes from the sugar coating on the tablet than convince my body to absorb enough iron for it to be a problem.

I watched episode four of The Man In The High Castle this evening. I am really enjoying it so far. I really like the intro and theme too. The style reminds me of The Expanse’s intro sequence. In this case it’s very arty and surreal against the grim reality of the story.


I finished Clone Wars and The Expanse. Clone Wars ending was quite sombre but I already knew it would be since it lines up with the third prequel. I enjoyed Clone Wars a lot more than I expected to. I hope that we get to see more of Ahsoka. I think I’d rather see an Ahsoka series than the Boba Fett and Obi Wan series that they are also supposedly making.

The Expanse was… ehhhh. Something actually happened in the finale, so that was an improvement over the previous 5 episodes. But it seemed like it was a set up for S6. I hope it’s better than S5! S5 is by far the weakest season so far.

I’ve started watching Man In The High Castle. I’m only two episodes in so far but it seems very good, if incredibly bleak. It’s set in an alternate history 1960s America where Germany and Japan won WW2 and occupied and divided up America. I think the logistical improbability of this has been hand-waved away by saying that Germany won the race to the atomic bomb. Anyway…. I really like Rufus Sewell as a.. err… gestapo? officer. He plays a very intelligent and very scary man.

I don’t know what else to watch though…

I have heard good things about The Orville but I don’t think it’s on any of the streaming services I have. Star Trek Lower Decks might be good too. I keep thinking about watching S3 of Star Trek Discovery but I’m not sure I can face another 10 hours watching Michael Burnham being serious and dramatic.