Realities collide in cataclysmic Man in the High Castle final season trailer
Executive producer Isa Dick Hackett walks EW through the new footage.
San Diego Comic-Con brought us the first glimpse of where exactly Julia Crain teleported off to from her cell in the Reich, but the stakes are much higher in the new full-length trailer for the final season of The Man in the High Castle, which EW can exclusively reveal.
“When there’s something truly worth fighting for, you’re gonna know it,” Julia (Alexa Davalos) says in the footage. Now, she definitely has something to fight for.
In season 3 of Amazon’s alternate-history drama, the battle between the Rebels and the Reich reached a new level. The Nazis, as part of a patriotic documentary, destroyed all American monuments, culminating in the bombing of the Statue of Liberty. Meanwhile Julia, tracking a mysterious machine in an underground cavern, followed the clues from her alt-reality visions and found the Nazis’ plot to conquer parallel worlds. The final moments of the finale saw Julia, in the custody of John Smith (Rufus Sewell), tapping into her Traveler abilities and saving herself from death by entering a different reality, one where John isn’t a Nazi commander and the Allied powers won the war.
Season 4 will now offer fans “a proper conclusion,” executive producer Isa Dick Hackett tells EW.
“The central question is what side of history our characters will be on,” she says. “How will their choices and their alliances, how will they be held accountable for that? I think it’s really relevant now in this world, and I think it’s provocative.”
There’s a lot we can glean from the new trailer. John declares to his Nazi breathren, “America is a rebel nation. Only an American can truly control it.” With the Führer still recovering from a Rebel gunshot wound last season, it seems like John will be getting a promotion, a speculation further fueled by Julia’s confrontation with Helen (Chelah Horsdal). “Millions of people will die when your husband is in charge of it all,” she exclaims.
It also looks as though John will be making a trip to the reality Julia visits.
The footage shows him wearing a suit and walking toward the Nazis’ portal, while a string of short scenes cut together glimpse him embracing his son, Thomas, as if it were a long-awaited reunion. (In the show’s main reality, Thomas was killed in the season 2 finale.)
Hackett refrains from addressing any of these head-on, in order to maintain some mystery for the story at play. “I can say, generally, that the pressure at home, that his interpersonal relationship grows and becomes more intense as the world around him is in further and further conflict,” she says. “So, I think there’s a really interesting dynamic there, the personal versus professional, which we’ve seen play out, but it’s much more intense in this final season.”
Hackett can say that this season gets a production budget to match the ambition of the show’s final bow. The trailer glimpses tanks and planes in what she calls the Battle of Denver, which is “a good reflection of the season, generally speaking, of the kinetic [energy] and the big set pieces and the action. It’s by far the biggest we’ve had, and fans can expect to see that energy pretty consistently throughout the season.”
Actress Frances Turner makes her debut this season as Bell Mallory, an escapee of a Nazi concentration camp in the Japanese Pacific States who meets up with a man named Elijah (Clé Bennett) and becomes the leader of the Black Communist Rebellion, a faction dedicated to the liberation of African-Americans.
In a reality where there wasn’t a civil rights movement in the U.S., the BCR brings “an entirely different fight” to the table, Hackett says.
“[Bell] is not necessarily a reluctant leader, but she’s somebody who ultimately is the leader of the factions because of her tenacity and her ability to strategize, and she’s fearless,” she adds “We talked about her early on, in the earliest days of the writer’s room this season, and we were all so excited about this character and very loosely based [her] on Angela Davis.”
As for the returning players, the writers sought to deliver emotional resonance as each micro story arc reaches its conclusion.
Julia, forced to make her first kills in season 3, is now more “strategic in season 4, and she’s also assembled additional allies.” Helen, forced to choose between the safety of her daughters and her husband’s support of a regime that killed their son, is “really starting to question the value system,” Hackett says. “Keep an eye on all the women this season.”
“In this final season,” the EP adds, “we manage to give fans new dimensions to the characters — no pun intended.”
The fourth and final season of The Man in the High Castle will drop Nov. 15 on Amazon Prime Video. Watch the new trailer above.