Cairo, 1912: The case started as a simple one for the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities ― handling a possessed tram car. Soon, however, Agent Hamed Nasr and his new partner Agent Onsi Youssef are exposed to a new side of Cairo stirring with suffragettes, secret societies, and sentient automatons in a race against time to protect the city from an encroaching danger that crosses the line between the magical and the mundane. [more inside]
From the New York Times bestselling author of American Wife and Eligible, a novel that imagines a deeply compelling what-might-have-been: What if Hillary Rodham hadn't married Bill Clinton? [more inside]
For All Mankind: A City Upon a Hill Season 1, Ep 10
The consequences of Ed's actions and the Apollo 24/25 mishap unfold. (NB this is not Apple TV+'s plot description, which has spoilers!)
For All Mankind: Dangerous Liaisons Season 1, Ep 9
A crisis in space puts the Apollo 24 and 25 crews in peril.
For All Mankind: Rupture Season 1, Ep 8
[the episode synopsis arguably spoils the previous episode's cliffhanger so I put it after the break.] [more inside]
For All Mankind: Hi Bob Season 1, Ep 7
Ed, Gordo and Danielle struggle with an extended Jamestown mission. [more inside]
For All Mankind: Home Again Season 1, Ep 6
A launchpad accident leads to delayed missions and FBI background checks.
The Man in the High Castle: Hitler Has Only Got One Ball Season 4, Ep 0
The final season of The Man in the High Castle will be rocked by war and revolution. [more inside]
For All Mankind: Into the Abyss Season 1, Ep 5
Ed and the crew change Apollo 15's landing site after lunar ice is detected.
For All Mankind: Prime Crew Season 1, Ep 4
A training accident spurs a national debate about women astronauts. [more inside]
For All Mankind: Nixon's Women Season 1, Ep 3
After the USSR lands the the first woman on the Moon, NASA scrambles to assemble a crop of women astronaut candidates, known as ASCANs. The candidates endure months of extremely difficult training, steadily winnowing their number. Women around the world are inspired by the Soviet cosmonaut and the NASA ASCANs.
For All Mankind: Red Moon Season 1, Ep 1
NASA is in crisis as the Soviets land the first man on the moon in 1969, the beginning of an alternate history. [more inside]
On a cold spring night in 1952, a huge meteorite fell to earth and obliterated much of the east coast of the United States, including Washington D.C. The ensuing climate cataclysm will soon render the earth inhospitable for humanity, as the last such meteorite did for the dinosaurs. This looming threat calls for a radically accelerated effort to colonize space, and requires a much larger share of humanity to take part in the process. Elma York’s experience as a WASP pilot and mathematician earns her a place in the International Aerospace Coalition’s attempts to put man on the moon, as a calculator. But with so many skilled and experienced women pilots and scientists involved with the program, it doesn’t take long before Elma begins to wonder why they can’t go into space, too.
Creeper, a scrappy young teen, is done living on the streets of New Orleans. Instead, she wants to soar, and her sights are set on securing passage aboard the smuggler airship Midnight Robber. Her ticket: earning Captain Ann-Marie’s trust using a secret about a kidnapped Haitian scientist and a mysterious weapon he calls The Black God’s Drums.
Based on the discussions here of the first and second seasons, let's just dispense with the notion the third season of the series has anything to do with the book, shall we? Season two ended with some surprises and some things that were sort of inevitable with the arc of the story … [more inside]
The Man in the High Castle: I do believe my father wants what’s best, but this can’t be the way. Books Included Season 2, Ep 0
We continue to move far from the plot of the book, keeping only the Ally loss, a trifurcated America, and some surnames, but the exploration of alternate timelines, racial complexities, and genetic impurity grows increasingly complex in a delightfully Dicksonian fashion. The current timeline crucially depends on a fundamental misreading of a documentary film (fake news?), which seems to karmically doom almost any critical reading of the series thus far (all reading is misreading), or even any comparison to Dick's book.
This week is National Alternate History Week. Plus an update on the Beatrix Lohman Memorial Meditation Zone, a warning from the National Weather Service, and Children's Fun Fact Science Corner. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Inherit the Stars (Shooting Star of Yesteryear) Season 1, Ep 24
Some of the Orbital Knights continue battling UFE forces even after Asseylum's ceasefire order, while others choose to wait and see. In the end peace is established, with the Vers Empire providing Aldnoah technology to Earth in exchange for economic assistance. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: The Unvanquished (Sky of Prayers) Season 1, Ep 23
Klancain rescues Asseylum and Edelrittuo from the UFE commandos and manages to spirit them out of the moon base in his ship. Mazuurek vows his allegiance to Asseylum, and Asseylum contacts her grandfather, the Emperor. Slaine orders an all-out attack on the Earth forces in space, and enjoins the Orbital Knights on Earth to engage in battle earthside. However, Slaine's broadcast is interrupted by Asseylum's, declaring her intentions for peace between Vers and Earth, and her assuming the throne as Empress of Vers.
Aldnoah.Zero: Out of the Past (Chance Meeting and Separation) Season 1, Ep 22
Slaine greets Klancain and tries to bring him to his side, as Klancain is influential among the Vers Knights loyal to the Emperor. United Earth Forces launch a two-pronged attack on the Vers moon base. The UFE attack includes a covert operation with special ops forces infiltrating the Vers moon base. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: The Fortune's Fool (Beyond the Dream) Season 1, Ep 21
Earth forces, including Inaho, are forced to confront the three Vers Knights without the support of the badly damaged Deucalion. Inaho is experiencing increasing side effects from using his cybernetic eye. Meanwhile, Lemrina confronts Asseylum. Count Klancain, Cruhteo's son, arrives from Vers.
Aldnoah.Zero: The Light of Day (The Price of Honor) Season 1, Ep 20
Trapped by three Vers Knights working in concert, UFE squads retreat thanks to a daring intervention from the Deucalion. Mazuurek holds a personal audience with the disguised Lemrina, asking her questions about Earth. He then maneuvers to enter Slaine's landing castle while Slaine is absent and questions Edelrittuo. Lemrina is increasingly distressed with her role in Slaine's life. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Here to There (The Flaw in Paradise) Season 1, Ep 19
Slaine embarks on a campaign to solidify his hold on the Vers power structure. Magbaredge is disappointed that the UFE higher-ups do not seem to be aware that Vers tactics may be changing with the internal political changes in Vers. As his plans unfold Slaine is conflicted about the person he has become. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: The Rose and the Ring (Through the Deep Forest) Season 1, Ep 18
Earth forces take on Count Selnakis in New Orleans. Mazuurek continues making his way to his landing castle. Slaine and Count Marylcian begin their duel, with Harklight, Count Barouhcruz, and Lemrina - posing as Asseylum - as witnesses. The winner of the duel is entitled to all of the loser's assets. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: The Turning Wheel (Dawn of Intrigue) Season 1, Ep 17
Yuki and Marito are once again assigned to the Deucalion. Count Mazuurek has been taken prisoner. While questioning Mazuurek, Inaho manages to find some common ground regarding Princess Asseylum. Count Marylcian personally arrives at the Moon base and challenges Slaine to a duel.
Aldnoah.Zero: Soldier's Pay (Attack on the Burning Sand) Season 1, Ep 16
The Deucalion heads back to earth. Slaine is yet to be fully accepted by the other Vers Knights. The faction opposing Slaine's ascendance enjoin Count Mazuurek to begin an offensive. Count Mazuurek, who had so far avoided hostilities with Earth forces, reluctantly deploys in his kataphrakt. Yuki and Marito are part of the squadron sent to intercept Mazuurek. Back in the Vers asteroid base, Slaine realizes he needs to make a grand display of power to silence his detractors.
Aldnoah.Zero: Toll for the Brave (Pivoting Trap) Season 1, Ep 15
UFE and Vers forces prepare for battle in their respective asteroid bases. Magbaredge informs Inaho about some findings from research on activating Aldnoah Drives using Asseylum's blood. Slaine continues facing contempt from other Vers Counts for being a Terran, but is defended by Saazbaum. Finally the battle starts when the Trident and Marineros bases near each other. Saazbaum also joins the battle in his refurbished Dioskuria II.
Earth and Vers forces prepare for a major confrontation in space. Inaho and Slaine encounter each other in the initial skirmish. Lemrina vows to take all that is Asseylum's.
The Man in the High Castle: The New World Season 1, Ep 1
Amazon Pilot (2015): An adaptation of the Philip K. Dick novel, this one-hour show drops the viewer into an alternate world where Germany and Japan have won WWII and partitioned the U.S. A man named Joe joins the resistance in Nazi-controlled New York and sets off in a truck for the neutral zone, a DMZ in the Rockies between the two sides, which seem to be in a state of fragile detente. In Japanese-held San Francisco, a woman chances onto a reel of film that sends her also toward Canon City, Colorado.
It's just a pilot on Amazon at the moment, but an ambitious adaptation of a Philip K. Dick novel seems like our kind of thing, yeah?
Nineteen months after the assault on the UE HQ, the war between Earth and Vers continues. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Childhood's End (Though the Heavens Fall) Season 1, Ep 12
The heavily damaged Deucalion rams into Saazbaum's landing castle in a desperate move to continue with the plan to deactivate the landing castle's Aldnoah drive. Inaho battles Saazbaum while Yuki and Inko attempt to get Asseylum into the landing castle's Aldnoah drive room. Meanwhile Slaine returns to Saazbaum's landing castle. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Wind, Snow and Stars (The Battle of Novostalsk) Season 1, Ep 11
Saazbaum starts his assault on UE HQ with his landing castle. Saazbaum himself leads the charge as Saazbaum's troops decimate UE forces to find and kill Asseylum. Edelrittuo and Rayet manage to get Asseylum onto the Deucalion. The plan is to deliver Asseylum to Saazbaum's landing castle so she can forcibly shut down its Aldnoah drive.
Aldnoah.Zero: Before the War (A Storm Brewing) Season 1, Ep 10
The crew of the Deucalion work to restore power when the Aldnoah drive suddenly stops working and the ship crashes in the tundra. During the investigation, Rayet reveals her secret. Meanwhile, Saazbaum tells Slaine his side of the Tanegashima Incident.
Aldnoah.Zero: Darkness Visible (Memory Device) Season 1, Ep 9
Slaine wakes up in Saazbaum's landing castle, where Saazbaum explains some of the background of the Vers-Earth war. While practicing with the Areion's combat simulator, Rayet has flashbacks to her first encounter with Nilokeras. Dr. Yagarai tries out a new treatment for Lt. Marito's PTSD, forcing him to to fully confront the memory of his first encounter with a Vers kataphrakt.
Aldnoah.Zero: Then and Now (The Day We Saw the Bird) Season 1, Ep 8
Magbaredge and her crew discover a ship hidden underground. They realize it was an Earth ship designed to be powered by an Aldnoah drive, but abandoned when it could not be activated. Princess Asseylum reveals her identity and activates the ship's Aldnoah drive. Meanwhile Cruhteo interrogates Slaine in his landing castle as Saazbaum observes. As the interrogation proceeds, Saazbaum makes a decision.
Femianne continues attacking with her kataphrakt Hellas. Inaho decides to take a gamble and join forces with Slaine. Saazbaum discovers Slaine is headed to Tanegashima. Meanwhile, Magbaredge and her crew make a surprising discovery in Tanegashima. Asseylum makes an important decision.
Aldnoah.Zero: Steel Step Suite (Island of Memory) Season 1, Ep 6
At Emperor Rayregalia's formal declaration of war against Earth, all Earth personnel with military training are conscripted, including Inaho and friends. Captain Magbaredge sets course for Tanegashima, sparking memories of the battle in Tanegashima 15 years ago. Meanwhile, Slaine escapes from Cruhteo's landing castle, even as Saazbaum asks that Slaine be captured alive for his knowledge of Dr. Troyard's research.
Aldnoah.Zero: Phantom of the Emperor (Before the Audience) Season 1, Ep 5
The Vers Emperor declares an armistice, to the dissatisfaction of the Orbital Knights. Saazbaum orders an investigation into Trillram's death, while Cruhteo is ordered by the Emperor to investigate Asseylum's death. Ignoritng the armistice, Vlad seeks a rematch with Inaho. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Point of No Return (Knights in Pursuit) Season 1, Ep 4
Friends reunite on the rescue craft, and wait for the ship helmed by XO Mizusaki to arrive to escort them to safety. Slaine decides not to reveal to Cruhteo that Princess Asseylum is still alive. Cruhteo orders another of his knights to eliminate all survivors in Shinawara. [more inside]
Inaho and his friends are holed up in their school, having been ordered by 2nd Lt. Marito to distract the Vers Kataphrakt while a rescue operation can be organized. Based on what he's observed first-hand of the Kataphrakt, Inaho comes up with a plan to fight back against it. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Beyond the Horizon (The Longest Day on Earth) Season 1, Ep 2
The Vers invasion has started. Vers landing castles crash into Earth cities, while the ones still in orbit destroy Earth communication links. Earth defense forces are overmatched against Vers weaponry. [more inside]
Aldnoah.Zero: Princess of Vers (Princess of Mars) Season 1, Ep 1
The Princess of Vers, Asseylum Vers Allusia, heads to earth on a peace mission. It has been 15 years since Heaven's Fall, when the moon was partially destroyed during a battle between the Earth Federation and the Vers Empire. [more inside]