Alternate History – Spike

Desperate illegals trying to escape from the United States into Mexico? Nazi soldiers patrolling the border? That’s right, welcome to America… if Hitler had won World War II! This is Alternate History on SPIKE! – Spike

Rating: 25 out of 100

We normally don’t waste our time with the silly, albeit guilty pleasure fare of Spike TV for the purposes of the ‘Tastic, however, “the special,” Alternate History (Spike is calling it a “special,” it seemed a lot more like a back-door pilot to us), piqued our interest with the trailers and then so thoroughly disappointed us with the actual production that we felt it was necessary for the sake of historical and intellectual honesty to warn our readers to stay away from this ridiculous crapfest trying to pass itself off as a serious documentary.

On its face, it would seem to be an intriguing idea for discussion.  It is pretty well-accepted by scholars that WWII could have gone either way save for a few key events but the problem is that this dopey presentation doesn’t talk about those key events, per se, it discusses technologies that were researched but never developed to their full capability. Now, if you’re going to have the, “What if the Nazis completed/used [insert technology here]?” discussion, you’d better provide some historical context to back up your speculation.  This mess does nothing of the sort and to make matters worse it is riddled with credible sources providing interviews (Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, historical scholars, military experts, etc.) in an attempt to fool the viewer into believing this schlock is anything more than really bad science fiction.

A fine example of this was the nonsense they presented during the opening of the show when they suggest that D-Day would have turned out differently had the Messerschmitt Me 262 (the world’s first jet fighter which had been in development since 1941) been mass-produced, but “Hitler and his generals didn’t grasp the tactical importance…”   First, this is historically inaccurate as the Me 262 didn’t even go into service to have pilots trained to fly it until April of 1944 and didn’t even see combat until July… a month after D-Day.  It wasn’t an issue of mass-production it was an issue of technological development, and that’s what Hitler (not his generals) didn’t grasp; the importance of focusing efforts on military technologies for future use.

Because of his lack of military command experience and his massive egomania, Hitler didn’t care about scientific advancement unless it gave immediate results to be used in the war effort. Therefore, there weren’t enough resources dedicated to the Me 262 or any other cutting edge technology until it was too late because Hitler allocated all of the Reich’s resources on the mass-production of current technologies that were in use (tanks, munitions, aircraft, etc.).  The point of all of this is that when discussing any of these technologies, the discussion ends right there. These new technologies could never have been used to any serious degree by the Nazis to change the outcome of the war because a cult of personality was running the military, not the military.  Alternate History doesn’t even address that because if they did, that eliminates the rest of this science fiction speculation about what America would be like over the next 70 years.

Speaking of which, we don’t know what’s more stupid, the complete ignorance surrounding the historical and political context or the notion that all of the technological advances made possible by the post-war boom and American innovation would exist under National Socialism… just a little different.  By its very nature Naziism represses innovation due to the fact that all advancement would be controlled by the state for the purpose of benefiting the state.  I.e., no capitalism and that’s what’s pushed the greatest advances in technology and quality of life, post-war.  Of course there’s also the issue of only the racially pure being allowed to participate and there’s also the little problem that Hitler is still in the picture and if he didn’t see the value in pursuing a technology, it wouldn’t be pursued… which is of course the same problem with the technology during the war.  For crap’s sake, if you want an understanding about what life would be like if the Nazis won, read George Orwell’s 1984 (or if you’re too lazy, watch the various film incarnations).  Yeah, we know Orwell intended it as an allegory to Stalinism but there isn’t a whole heck of a lot that distinguishes the two socio-political systems.

We can only recommend Alternate History in so far as you have to see this for yourself to understand just how stupid it is.  If, as we suspect, this is a backdoor pilot and there is an intention to do more of these Alternate History shows, we can only assume that it’s going to be as bad as this first episode.  Below is the entire episode.  See if you can get past the first five minutes.

More thoughts:

To further understand why Hitler could never have succeeded, I refer you the 2004 German bio-pic, Downfall starring Bruno Ganz as Hitler during the last week of Hitler’s life… in the bunker.  To understand Naziism, you have to understand Hitler and if you weren’t a history major with a focus on WWII or just a serious WWII buff, you’d never be able to comprehend the true level of insanity that surrounded Hitler and his cult.  This is just something that they don’t teach in high school or in a level 100 or 200 college course. Downfall  effectively spells it out for the masses.  Here’s the full film, enjoy!

23 comments on “Alternate History – Spike

  1. Thank you….

    Sadly I just watched the show and cringed with some of the stupidity they floated out there right up to the Knucklehead Marine Drill Sergeant with his rah rah crap…almost made me wish the Nazis had won WW2… and we never would have had to see him… lol.

    NOTE: We had to edit this comment due to its content. Although we appreciate a lively debate and love to see participation, please keep it civil. Wishing death on someone or the family of that person because of an appearance in a television show, even jokingly/sarcastically, falls outside the lines of decorum around here. Suggesting that George Lopez metaphorically-speaking sucks donkey balls… perfectly acceptable. Wishing that he chokes on the actual thing… not so much. Thanks for reading. -The ‘Tastic

    • Sebastian, as I noted on your YouTube page, your review was incredibly insightful and, of course, hilarious. It reminds me a lot of the Red Letter Media Harry S. Plinkett reviews but from a guy with A German accent and it makes it that much better because with the accent, I can just hear you rolling your eyes having to address all of the idiocy of this show. I nearly peed my pants with the “March of the Stupids” comment, because that’s exactly what this entire mess was. You covered so much more than I did and that’s only because I could probably write a book on the historical inaccuracies and out-of-context references they made during this to present their ridiculous arguments.

      I so wanted to address all of the problems with using U-boats to launch a nuclear missile attack against but it would have taken forever so I addressed the nonsense of the Me 262 as the example (thanks for pointing out the issue that D-Day would never had happened if the Allies didn’t already have air superiority and the error by the military history expert regarding the armaments… completely forgot about that). But the thing with the atomic bombs was just so ridiculous, I didn’t know where to go with it and still keep it succinct.

      Excellent insight into the history of the Nazis trying to force undesirables leave early-on which is of course, historically accurate and verifiable, and yes but my only bone of contention on that is that you pointed out the the extermination policies by the Nazis were a consequence more of German entanglements than a pre-planned policy dating back to the early days of the rise of the Nazi party and ideologies of racial superiority. I don’t have any particular argument with that, because that is true and although the notion was hinted at as early as 1939, I believe, there wasn’t an actionable plan for it until well into the war. The problem I have is the notions that the Nazis wouldn’t continue “The Final Solution” program to eradicate undesirables post-victory in WWII. I believe that they would have continued the policies simply due to the logistical nightmare of trying to control an annexed population of 130 million not to mention that if the Nazis won they would still retain control of the rest of conquered Europe at the same time and they had enough manpower issues during the war that as you pointed, they had been forced to use slave labor. So, if we agree that it was Nazis own entanglements that caused the logistical nightmares regarding their Jewish and undesirables policy and that this in turn pushed them into trying to accomplish their racial purity goals in the most efficient way possible (mass extermination), wouldn’t it be only logical that they would have no choice but to continue their extermination policies post-victory because their logistical problems would be exponentially larger? But then of course, there is also the issue of all of these entanglements being a large part of the reason why the Nazis lost to begin with.

      What I thought was particularly hilarious was near the end of part two of your review, how quickly you wrapped it up. You can tell that you were just annoyed at the whole thing at that point. 🙂

      For the record the only reason it even got a 25 out of 100 is because of the production values. For a low budget crap show, it was actually pretty well-produced to the point that they could make the average viewer think that it’s so shiny that it must be all true.

  2. I’d suggest you research the bureaucratic machinations set in motion during the early days of the Nazi party’s rise to power in order to understand that your argument at 1:34 – “Why would the Nazis try to stop undesirables from fleeing?”

    I’m not trying to troll you, I just think that if you were aware of the incredibly complex bureaucratic procedures involved regarding transit from Germany during the early days, you -as a seemingly intelligent and well informed person- would choose not to utilize that as a strengthening point for your argument.

    • I always love when someone says “I’m not trying to troll you…” right after they’ve done exactly that.

      First, Sebastian is absolutely correct in his analysis and if you continue to watch beyond the 1:34 mark, he explains exactly why.

      Second, before you start in with the passive-aggressive statements such as:

      “I’d suggest you research the bureaucratic machinations set in motion during the early days of the Nazi party’s rise to power…”

      I’d like to suggest that you do little research on exactly who you’re trolling.

      Beyond the fact that you left the statement completely dangling, you provide no evidence to back up your claims. In fact, I’m hard-pressed to understand what your claims are. The only thing I can tell is that you don’t agree with him.

      Not to pick on you, but I’m not a big fan of “drive-by-posting.” I welcome debate and discussion but come to the table with at least a claim and then back it up. Making some vague statement mentioning “bureaucratic machinations” without elaborating does not add to the discussion nor does it add to the cause of civil discourse. So, feel free to provide more information and really express your opinion on why Sebastian is way off-base or heck, even why I’m off-base. As you might have noticed, I don’t block people’s comments with whom I disagree with. The only time I even edit them is when (as noted above with Mr. Grimm’s comments) a post contains personal attacks.

  3. Now I do agree that there were some problems with the show but they were not the same problems that you guys have with the show. I have to disagree with you guys on a whole bunch of your arguments. One the nazis were testing jet fighters just not the 262. Had hitler given his generals the go the could have mass produced them and had the pilots trained to use them. The reason Isay the could have mass produced them is because they were mass producing v1 and v2 rockets two years before the end of the war. Germany had the technology it was just a matter of putting serious resources into technology itself. As for the nazi nuclear program, what the show said was true. They were putting serious research into nuclear technology. Heck it was nazi scientists that completed Americas first atomic. I mean how big of a coincidence is it that America tested its first bomb 3 months after germany surrendered. Germany didnt even need the jets and nukes to win the war.

    • Germany was doing atomic bomb research but the bombs they tested were technically dirty bombs and not atom bombs. Also germany did develop the me 262 but hitler wanted vengeance weapon and order developed into a bomber which slowed production. In the end, basically, as long as hitler was leading germany there is no why they could have won ww2

  4. Had Germany not invaded the soviet union they would have been able to hold Europe, why? because hitler sent 3 quarters of the entire army into the soviet union leaving a quarter to hold off the western allies. America Canada and Britain were having enough trouble with 1 quarter of the German army. The Germans would have held Europe long enough to complete fortress Europe, once that was complete the allies would have never gotten in and D Day would have failed. Germany then could have rebuilt the luftwaffe. You see the allies got really lucky. Lucky that Hitler didnt expand on the jet program and lucky that he chose to send his forces to useless locations like russia. They were already giving Hitler all the resources he needed.

  5. I think that you guys just didnt like the idea of Germany taking over America. Had it been any other country say russia or britain you guys probably wouldnt care. I think that you guys are the kind of people that thing that America is this invincible force that cant be stopped. Remember that all of the major advancements were from the nazis.

    • Jason, you are honestly one of the biggest dopes to ever post on this blog which is why I approved your comments. Let’s dismantle your arguments one by one shall we?

      1. “Testing” jet fighters is a different story than having them field ready and having pilots trained on them.

      2. Their engines were unreliable and had a very limited capacity in the field before having to be replaced.

      3. The Nazis had no capability to mass-produce jet fighters of any sort especially not reliable ones.

      4. How do your or Spike define “putting serious research into…” nuclear technology? What does “serious research” have to do with the fact that they weren’t close to having a bomb?

      5. And this is my favorite idiotic comment of all:

      “Heck it was nazi scientists that completed Americas first atomic.”

      Wrong, Dummy, and yes, you need to be called names for this. The German Scientists that worked on the Manhattan Project were primarily Jewish Refugees who fled Germany in 1933 after the Nazis took over. The rest of the German scientists (many of whom were not German, but foreign nationals only living and working in Germany) were political dissidents who also fled Germany in 1933 when the Nazis took over.

      6. Hey, Dummy, maybe Spike should have focused on the insane amount of effort that Hitler put into the Eastern front as an argument for the stupid show. Maybe you should write for them because that’s actually a legitimate argument worthy of discussion. Considering that they didn’t do this, why the holy fu*k are you bothering to bring it up as an argument against our very legitimate points about why this show was so stupid?

      7. Again… hey, Dummy, we made it very clear in the opening of this piece that we had no problem with the concept of this alternate history that in fact it was the intriguing subject matter that had us tuning in to begin with, but this isn’t alternate history, it’s alternate reality and revisionist history. Let’s try this again for the cheap seats and those who don’t have any reading comprehension skills.

      “On its face, it would seem to be an intriguing idea for discussion. It is pretty well-accepted by scholars that WWII could have gone either way save for a few key events but the problem is that this dopey presentation doesn’t talk about those key events, per se, it discusses technologies that were researched but never developed to their full capability.”

      So where do you get any sense of patriotic or cultural bias from that or anything else written in the OP? Our problem is with the bad history as presented by Spike, not the concept of the show.

  6. You tackled this show dead on. Also, how in the heck can a failed D-Day lead to the Nazis winning the war when you had the Allies pushing in south through Italy, and on top of that, Uncle Joe moving in from the East.

    • also they were being destroyed from the air. It doesn’t matter how many planes you produce, if you don’t have the gas.

  7. I think people are forgetting the vital fact that the show is called ALTERNATE history. I also agree with jason Ross that some people really can’t handle the idea of American being occupied by Germany, or any foreign country

    • Wrong. If you bothered to read the OP, you’d notice that the concept of the the Nazis winning the war and occupying the U.S. isn’t what we take issue with, however, it’s how Spike idiotically gets there that is the problem. Their “facts” aren’t facts, period and for the record, Sebastian doesn’t have a dog in this fight as far as personal ethnocentric or patriotic biases are concerned. He’s from Germany and a noted expert in WWII and author of an Alternative History novel and probably the most objective and educated source you could refer to on the subject.

      The alternative history hobby isn’t something that Spike invented, I hope you understand. Just do a search on the subject and you’ll find hundreds of groups dedicated to the subject. The difference is that the legitimate groups that postulate and discuss the concepts and scenarios do it based on actual facts, Spike didn’t do this and I’m sorry that your knowledge on WWII history is so lacking that you can’t distinguish between the legitimate alternate history discussions and foolishness like this, but then again, you’re exactly the type of uninformed viewer that Spike is targeting with this.

      Seriously, the 1984 film Red Dawn starring Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen is a far more likely alternative history scenario than this crap is.

    • WRONG. Alternate history should make sense but Spike gave us what amounted to rambling idiocy. The GURPS RPG supplement _Infinite Worlds_ gives five somewhat viable alternate worlds for Nazi Germany “winning” WWII with Reich-4 (divergence 1941) and Reich-5 (divergence 1931) being the ones where they take over the US. Even Reich-4 with its Germany and Japan developing the atom bomb but the US didn’t make more sense than the parade of outright stupid Spike TV gave us.

  8. I thought the show had potential, but I was let down by the all the fluff and lack of substance. I would’ve like the show been an hour long instead of a half-hour and it would’ve made room for discussion. For example, they could’ve mentioned a point/counter-point discussion like ‘even if the Germans beat back the allies on D-Day, they would still have to deal with the Soviets on the eastern front.’ Better yet, they should’ve gone back further and say things like ‘what Germany should’ve done from the begining.’ Things like that.

  9. also lets just say germany stoped d-day and nuked new york and philadelphia. America making its own nukes would know how hard they were to build and that germany could have only one or two more. Now knowing that, they wouldn’t surrender but would in fact nuke germany and it would be a stand off. Also what about the soviet union? Did they just say oh my the germans have nukes we better just give up. NO. After 20 million dead they would never give up they would keep on fighting until germany was defeated or every person in the soviet union was dead.

  10. That video commentary was very informative, and surprisingly hilarious–I love how Sebastian apologizes for his lack of mastery over the English language, then a minute later makes me bust out laughing with comments like “…that’s the point where I check if the bleeding from my nose and ears from my hemorrhaging brain has already begun.” Good stuff…

      • also the only reason germany declared war on america is because japan did and they were bound by the tri- party pact. also its far more likely for germany to develop a icbm to attack america than a slbm. did anyone else feel dumber after watching this show?

  11. If the British had executedtheir plan to assasinate Hitler then there could have been some key decisions that would have been reversed such as the STG-44, the Messerschmitt Me 262, the V2, the Atom Bomb, then Germany could have had a chance, but they would have been much better off if they hadn’t invaded the Soviet Union then they would have been able to fortify europe and been better prepared for d-day and the Allied Invasion. Nazi Gmermany could have held out longer or maybe succeded in holding Europe but not with Hitler as the Military Leader.

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