Hey New Yorkers, need a ride on 42nd street? Hop aboard with Nazis. They always know where the trains are going.
In what can only be considered a terrible idea and will haunt marketing directors from today forward, the 42nd street subway in Manhattan has been decked out in Nazi and Imperial Japanese iconography to promote Amazon’s new series Man in the High Castle.
And it’s, well, something. See for yourself:
An adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s speculative history novel where the Axis claimed victory in World War II, Man in the High Castle is Amazon’s latest attempt at high-concept genre that has been remarkably average.
New York City’s transit spokesperson Adam Lisberg told Gothamist that the promotion actually meets the standards held by the transit organization.
“They’re advertising a show,” he said.“The updated standards prohibit political advertisements. Unless you’re saying that you believe Amazon is advocating for a Nazi takeover of the United States, then it meets the standards.” When Gothamist asked if Hitler’s Reichsadler eagle and Japan’s Rising Sun — which were actual things that lesser-powered nations were subjugated under — would disqualify the promotion from MTA’s guidelines, Lisberg replied: “I’m not trying to be cute. Despite your, or my, or anyone’s feelings about a particular ad, we have to be guided by the ad standards we put forward.”
The 42nd, 72nd, and 96th street subways are special cars that are often decked out for advertising. In 2011, HBO took these cars back to the 1920’s to promote the second season of Boardwalk Empire, which had considerably less Nazis.
While Man in the High Castle is just fiction, you can take a real victory fart against imperialism thanks to Amazon from now until December 14 when the promotion mercifully ends.