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The Handmaid's Tale
E1 of 10
Series 1 - Episode 1
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Elisabeth Moss is mesmerising in this finely controlled adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel. She plays a young mother whom we first meet as she is chased by armed police through woods and brutally parted from her daughter.
We later learn they were fleeing a regime that has turned America into a puritan dystopia. Moss’s character is given a new name – Offred – and because there has been “a plague of infertility”, she is assigned to a military commander (Joseph Fiennes) to bear him children, via a sex ritual known as the Ceremony.
In this and other scenes, the series renders its imagined future in chilling detail, from ritual punishments to the religious sayings that characters swap in conversation (“Under His eye”, “Blessed be the fruit” and so on).
It’s all chokingly bleak: “I need to scream, I need to grab the nearest machine gun,” Moss says in internal monologue, but her face remains a mask.
Dystopian drama based on Margaret Atwood's novel about a future American theocracy, in which declining birth rates have led to a new social order, where the few remaining fertile women are kept as slaves to carry children for the regime's leaders. Elisabeth Moss stars as one of these women, who struggles to cope with her repressive existence and the resentment of her owner's wife.
Cast & Crew
Full Episode Guide
Elisabeth Moss hid a secret message "to the patriarchy" in her Emmys shoes
When life imitates art…
The Handmaid's Tale and Big Little Lies win big at the 2017 Emmys
First trailer for Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace looks as chilling as The Handmaid’s Tale
TV dramas have gone too far in portraying men as irredeemably awful
The Handmaid’s Tale finale gave us the most distressing moment of the series – but is there hope for Offred yet?
The Handmaid’s Tale will return to Channel 4 for a second series
Meet the cast of The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid's Tale star OT Fagbenle: “You can judge a man by the size of what offends him”
If The Handmaid’s Tale makes you despair of religion, try Broken
None of the TCA Awards acting nominees are white men – for the first time ever
Attention Meninists! They've finally made a Handmaid's Tale just for you
What time is The Handmaid's Tale on TV?