CW: rape mention
The Hulu original The Handmaid’s Tale is gory. It will continuously and mercilessly drag you away from your comfort zone and force you to watch the most basic human rights be violated. It’s undeniably a great show – but it does require a stable stomach, as some of the scenes are very hard on the eyes and on the mind. Even as a fan of Black Mirror, I still managed to be terrified of this particular breed of dystopia. This show is basically a Victorian spin-off of Black Mirror.
A quick breakdown:
In the fictional Gilead, an ultra conservative theocratic and totalitarian version of the US, the patriarchy reigns supreme. Offred, formerly known as June, is separated from her husband and daughter, and forcefully assimilated into the new system. The rare blessing of fertility becomes her biggest curse, as she is trained to carry the child of one of the republic’s commanders.
Every month, Offred endures a ritual euphemistically named the Ceremony, in which she is forced to have intercourse with the Commander Waterford while being held by his wife. The show follows her life in this new society, while interweaving it with moments from her old life.
The Handmaid’s Tale is a painful reflection on how flimsy our so-called inalienable rights are and how we need fight everyday to keep them.
Some character highlights: