This is going to be the first time I write a television review. Like all first times I assume that it’s going to be awkward as hell, a little….okay, maybe a lot….uncomfortable and after a minute or two, satisfying to one party.😅
Let’s get to it then…
I had heard about this book a few years back but I had refused to read it because I knew it would rile me up. I was deliberately sticking my head in the sand. But then the TV series came out and the promotional pictures…..let’s just say I had to unstick my head from the sand and get riled up.
So I begrudgingly went to movie central at Zai Plaza and bought myself a copy of the DVD.
When I sat to watch, I had a pillow to scream my frustration into, a hanky handy to wipe away the snot.
The Handmaid’s Tale is set in the future where for some reason environmental disasters have led to an alarming increase in infertility and this has crippled the world. A Christian fundamentalist regime who call themselves the Sons of Jacob, take over the US renaming it the Republic of Gilead.
All the hopelessness in all these dystopian movies and series do not come close to the hopelessness in The Handmaid’s Tale.
George Orwell’s 1984 is a utopia compared to this.
Since infertility has plagued this world, the women who are fortunate or unfortunate enough to still be fertile are forced to become handmaids and have ritualized sex with men in leadership positions who are known as commanders in order to give from them and their wives children…..creepy, right?
Even worse, the handmaids are stripped of their identity and their names.
Any slight offense against state leads to painful mutilation. Fingers are cut off, eyes are plucked out, hands cut off and in some extreme cases, genital mutilation and even death.
The protagonist is called Offred, literally of Fred, belonging to, a slave of Fred, her commander.
We are in Offred’s head for most of the series and she is played by the absolutely phenomenal Elisabeth Moss….who was the only reason I stayed with the series, Mad Men.
Offred’s former name is never explicitly stated in the book but in the series we learn that her name is June.
What’s even more horrifying is the fact that the Sons of Jacob use the Bible to justify their oppression of women.
And EVEN MORE SCARING, is the fact that the wives of the commanders are complacent in these women’s mistreatment.
I feel like if I keep writing, I’m going to give spoilers away.
It’s horrifying all round and even I, with my pretty amazing binge-watching skills (I’ve watched entire seasons in a day), I could not watch it in one sitting.
I recommend that y’all watch it. It’s haunting, it’s beautiful, it’s emotional, it’s vivid, it’s sad, it’s thought provoking. It’s an eye-opening drama to what can happen when a person, nay a man, chooses to find verses in the Bible that justify his prejudice against women.
And in some parts of the world, this injustice to women is actually happening.
Thank you Margaret Atwood for writing this and thank you Hollywood for doing this iconic book justice.
So how was the review…. Was it goooooood? Drop your comment below.