Dystopian dramas like “The Walking Dead” are already popular. Now, with Donald Trump perilously close to the US presidency, many Americans are considering ways to alter the course of history – or move to Canada, whichever is simpler. A pair of red-hot Emmy contenders –“The Man in the High Castle” and “11.22.63” — tap into that cultural anxiety and revise history in ways that are dark, suspenseful and sometimes downright scary. But which do you prefer? Vote in our poll below.
“The Man in the High Castle,” based on the acclaimed 1962 novel by legendary sci-fi author Philip K. Dick, reimagines America in the 1960s as if the Axis powers had won World War II instead of the Allies. Streaming on Amazon, it hopes to find the same Emmy success in drama series categories as the online service had last year with “Transparent” over on the comedy side. It was developed for television by Frank Spotnitz, a three-time Emmy nominee for “The X-Files”: twice as a producer of this Best Drama Series contender (1997-1998), and once for Best Drama Writing as co-scripter of the episode “Memento Mori” (1997).
As “11.22.63” is a limited series it won’t compete head-to-head against “High Castle,” but the two programs have a lot in common. “11.22.63” also streams online (at Hulu), takes place in the 1960s and is based on a book by a famous author. In this case it comes from Stephen King‘s 2011 bestseller about a time traveler from the present day who goes back to try to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Its cast includes several awards darlings, including Oscar and Emmy nominated lead actor James Franco, Oscar champ Chris Cooper, and Tony and Emmy winner Cherry Jones. It was developed for television by Bridget Carpenter, a past Emmy nominee for Best Drama Series for “Friday Night Lights” (2011).
Which do you think is the better alternate history. Vote in our poll below, and make your Emmy predictions right here. You’ll compete to win our contest prizes for best picks — $500 (first place), $300 (second place) and $200 (third place) in Amazon gift certificates — a place of honor on our leaderboard and a starring role in next year’s Top 24 Users (the two dozen folks who do the best predicting this year’s Emmy nominations). Be sure to read our contest rules.