“I had another name, but it’s forbidden now.”
Hulu has finally dropped the first teaser for their highly anticipated adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, and it looks like it is going to be pretty great. If you aren’t familiar with the book, you should pick up a copy and read it immediately. Go ahead, I’ll wait… Okay, if you don’t have time right now, here’s the synopsis:
The Handmaid's Tale is the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society in what was formerly the United States. Facing environmental disasters and a plunging birthrate, Gilead is ruled by a twisted fundamentalism in its militarized ‘return to traditional values.’ As one of the few remaining fertile women, Offred (Elisabeth Moss) is a Handmaid in the Commander’s household, one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as a last desperate attempt to repopulate the world. In this terrifying society, Offred must navigate between Commanders, their cruel Wives, domestic Marthas, and her fellow Handmaids – where anyone could be a spy for Gilead – all with one goal: to survive and find the daughter that was taken from her.
One of the best, creepiest parts of the book was how ordinary the settings were, only with a crazy fundamentalist theocratic dystopia arrayed inside the suburban houses and schools, and it looks like the series is using that to great effect. It’s also interesting how much of the very brief teaser is devoted to Offred’s life before she became a Handmaid, which might be a clue as to how they are planning to stretch one not-that-fat novel into multiple seasons of television.
The Handmaid’s Tale is one of my all-time favorite books, and I can’t wait to watch this series, especially with the talent involved. In addition to Moss as the titular Handmaid, Joseph Fiennes plays the Commander, Yvonne Strahovski plays Serena Joy, and Samira Wiley plays Moira. Sadly, we have to wait until April 26 to see the first episode, but until then, don’t let the bastards grind you down.