The Man in the High Castle season 4, episode 8 recap: Hitler Has Only Got One Ball

Photo: The Man in the High Castle: Season 4.. Image Courtesy Liane Hentscher/Amazon Studios
Photo: The Man in the High Castle: Season 4.. Image Courtesy Liane Hentscher/Amazon Studios /

Chaos reigns as the Empire withdraws from the Pacific States. As the Reich plans to invade, Smith comes under suspicion. Juliana confronts Helen on THe Man in the High Castle.

One month after the announcement of Japanese withdrawal from the Pacific States, the Empire is preparing to leave and working out new arrangements with the Reich. Their treaty will still be honored, but Smith is angling for strategic information on the BCR. It seems he wants to invade the territory once the Japanese are gone, and knowing that the BCR will not have access to Japan’s fictional nuclear arsenal puts the wheels in motion on The Man in the High Castle.

But there is quite a bit of chaos caused by the Empire’s withdrawal. Some citizens are lynching Japanese people in the street and looting stores. The Kempeitai do what they can to protect their people, but no longer have the authority they once did and they have much to do before departing for Japan. Kido must also find his son, who has gone missing.

Kido gives a beautiful toast to his men, admitting that he was always hard on them and never gave them praise. But now, in the end, he tells them that he is proud of them. “Go home,” he says. “Your families miss you terribly.”

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Kido finds out that Okami is holding Toru for ransom. Toru owes the Yakuza huge amounts of money for his opium addiction and is holding that over his head. Kido leaves to meet Okami, but is captured by white vigilantes who intend to lynch him. The BCR arrives to claim Kempeitai headquarters and save Kido in the process. Considering their history with lynching, they refuse to let it happen on their watch. They imprison Kido – in the gas chamber room where Frank’s sister and her children were killed – until they can give him a fair trial.

The upheaval on the West Coast is causing doubt and recklessness in the Reich. Hoover requests permission to set up universal surveillance to weed out subversives and Smith agrees. Smith’s confidante General Whitcroft is clearly uncomfortable and unimpressed with Hoover’s methods. He seems like a good guy who made the same mistake Smith did when he joined the Reich. Smith privately tells Whitcroft that he wants to know about suspected subversives before Hoover. Maybe to protect them? Or perhaps to use them?

Of course, Hoover is actually building a case against Smith and using his new powers to collect evidence. He arrests Bridget, the Smiths’ housekeeper, and threatens her family unless she informs on them. It’s not just Bridget, though. It’s Henry, Helen’s friends, old neighbors, everyone is being coerced to inform on Smith.

When Smith arrives back at his office, he finds that General Goertzmann is paying him a surprise visit. Smith has been summoned to Berin and he’s been sent to make sure Smith doesn’t get lost along the way. This isn’t good. But there’s more of that coy subtext between them, a kind of doublespeak that only they can understand. “Everything I have, I’ve taken by strategy,” says Goertzmann. He and Smith are very similar men, extremely resourceful and shrewd. Are they planning something together?

General Whitman tells Smith about the surveillance and offers to help him go up against Berlin and take the American Reich for himself. They have control of a huge nuclear arsenal, after all, and there’s nothing Berlin could do about it. But Smith declines, telling Whitman he has to go to Berlin. Things are not looking good for Smith.

Hawthorne and Caroline share a touching moment where they reminisce about their life together. In all the worlds Hawthorne has seen, he and Caroline were never in any of them, which makes their love very rare. There is something troubling in Caroline’s manner and Hawthorne can sense it. Later, she commits suicide and Hawthorne absolutely loses it. He tries to commit suicide himself but is stopped by the guards.

Erwin, a Resistance man working with Juliana and Wyatt, is able to shadow Martha and Amy at Gerhardt’s and learns that Helen will be visiting the next morning. However, Martha notices him and who could blame her for thinking that a creepy dude in a trench coat hanging around the girl’s department is a pedophile. Under the circumstances, it’s better than being clocked for Resistance. She follows him to the restroom and threatens to maim him if she ever sees him again.

They form a plan to intercept Helen at the store, but it’s going to be a dangerous mission. Cyanide capsules are handed out in case of capture. Juliana, Wyatt, Erwin, and Richie spend the night dancing and drinking, singing along to a song called “Hitler Has Only Got One Ball.”

The next morning, Erwin distracts Martha while Juliana approaches Helen in the changing room. She tells Helen that Thomas is alive and that Smith knows where he is. Smith is deceiving Helen and there may be proof on films he has locked away. Juliana gives Helen a card, a number to call if she wants to know more. Erwin dies in the pursuit, forced to take the cyanide capsule when Martha catches up with him. But Helen pretends that no one approached her, so that’s something.

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In the midst of all this chaos, Childan receives a letter of transit to Japan from the Crown Princess as a thank you for his service to her. Childan and Yukiko get married and plan to leave together.

What did you think of this episode of The Man in the High Castle? Be sure to tell us in the comment section below!