The Handmaid’s Tale (2017)


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Genres:  Drama | Sci-Fi

Country:  USA

Language:  English

Runtime:  1h

Creator:  Bruce Miller


Stars:  Elisabeth Moss, Max Minghella, Yvonne Strahovski

Taglines: Family is gone forever. We will bear no more Know the lies behind their laws. (Season 1) This is not ordinary. (Season 1) Let them think they control you. (Season 1)



A religion-based autocracy has taken over most of the United States, renaming the country Gilead. In this country women are second-class citizens. Anyone trying to escape punished. One such person is June,  captured while trying to escape with her husband and child and sentenced to be a handmaid, bearing children for childless government officials. As a handmaid, June is renamed Offred. This is her story.


In the near future, fertility rates collapse as a result of sexually transmitted diseases and environmental pollution. With this chaos, the totalitarian, theonomic government of “Gilead” establishes rule in the former United States in the aftermath of a civil war. Society organizs by power-hungry leaders along with a new, militariz, hierarchical regime of fanaticism and newly creats social classes, in which women are brutally subjugate, and by law not allowed to work, own property, handle money, or read. Worldwide infertility has resulted in the conscription of the few remaining fertile women in Gilead, called “Handmaids”, according to an extremist interpretation of a Biblical account. They are assigned to the homes of the ruling elite, where they must submit to ritualized rape by their male masters in order to become pregnant and bear children for those men and their wives.

Alongside the red-clad Handmaids, much of society now grouped into classes that dictate their freedoms and duties. Women are divided into a small range of social categories, each one signified by a similarly-styled plain dress in a specific color: Handmaids wear red, Marthas (who are housekeepers and cooks) wear green, and Wives (expected to run their households) wear blue. Econowives, the lower-class women who still have minimal agency, are sort of a mixture of all these categories, and they wear gray (a departure from the book in which Econowives wear stripes). Women prisoners are called Carols and worked to death clearing toxic waste. Another class of women, Aunts (who train and oversee the Handmaids), wear brown. Additionally, the Eyes are a secret police watching over the general populace for signs of rebellion, Hunters track down people attempting to flee the country, and Jezebels are prostitutes in secret brothels catering to the elite ruling class.

June Osborne, renamed Offred (Elisabeth Moss), the Handmaid assigned to the home of the Gileadan Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) and his wife Serena Joy (Yvonne Strahovski). Offred is subject to strict rules and constant scrutiny; an improper word or deed on her part can lead to brutal punishment. Offred, who named after her male master like all Handmaids, can remember the “time before”, when she was married and had a daughter, a job, a bank account, and her own name and identity, but all she can safely do now is follow the rules of Gilead in hopes that she can someday live free again and reunited with her daughter. The Waterfords, key players in the rise of Gilead, have their own conflicts with the realities of the society they have helped create.


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