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The Man in the High Castle recap: The New Normal

Juliana is back in San Francisco and uncovering more secrets while Joe attempts to conceal many of his own.

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Liane Hentscher/Amazon

The Man in the High Castle

TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
Arnold Chun, Luke Kleintank, Bernhard Forcher
Drama, Sci-fi, Thriller

The Man in the High Castle‘s fifth episode, “The New Normal,” picks up in the immediate aftermath of the Crown Prince of Japan being shot while giving a speech in San Francisco. Chaos erupts, with some people fleeing the scene while others stand around in shock. Frank, of course, flees, hiding his gun in an alley even though he never used it. Probably a good idea considering his history with the Kempeitai. 

All of the chaos means that the Japanese are locking down the area and looking for the shooter. Caught in this restrictive environment is “Barnes,” the Nazi agent working with Tagomi. The vial, which we learn later is actually a microfilm of some sort, is still in his possession after he was unable to get it to the Science Minster. When he’s about to be screened by the Japanese before they lead him away, he has to swallow the microfilm in order to keep its possession a secret.

Also lost in all the chaos is Juliana’s necklace, as Frank drops it when he turns to run away from the scene of the shooting. When everyone clears out later, Tagomi finds it on the ground and takes it. It’s unclear how the necklace could really be connected to Frank or Juliana, but we see it again at the end of the episode, and you know what they say about Chekhov’s gun.

Speaking of Juliana, she’s finally back home in San Francisco, and while she’s excited to see Frank, he’s not nearly as welcoming. After all, she just took off without giving him any notice and he was left to try and hold things together. That wasn’t easy, especially when the Kempeitai came looking for her.

With Frank being so cold, Juliana goes to visit her mom and step dad, both of whom have no idea about her trip to Canon City and remain in the dark about Trudy’s death. She’s only there for a short time because her mom begins to talk about how tragic it was that Frank lost his sister, niece, and nephew. The despair that falls across Juliana’s face is palpable, as this is the first she’s heard of their death, explaining Frank’s dire state.

She hurries home and embraces him, weeping into his shoulder and talking about how she regrets getting on the bus to Canon City. She feels responsible for everything that’s happened, including her changed relationship with Frank. When Frank goes back to work he recommends she goes to the dojo. She wonders if they can just go back to normal, but Frank says it’s impossible, and that for now he’s just trying to survive until the next day.

Unfortunately for Juliana though, she can’t even find comfort and familiarity at the dojo. When she shows up there she’s informed that the Kempeitai have come looking for her, and that her presence as a “wanted” person will disrupt the harmony of the dojo. Juliana may have only left for a few days, but her whole life has been turned upside down.

NEXT: Fight for something more