The Handmaid's TaleLatest News and Opinion
Posted Friday 7/13/18 at 11:36PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale sabotaged itself with its Season 2 finale song choice
The song choice for the Season 2 finale closing credits sequence "is the show’s worst music cue, and ... it sabotages what had been a relentlessly dire season in which unyielding oppression seemed to be a harsh lesson that was also precisely the point," says Kathryn VanArendonk. The song choice was "hilariously unsubtle," she says, adding that the song "attempts to build a new character out of June in the short space of a musical hook, reversing everything we knew about who she is and what she wants." She adds: "The Handmaid’s Tale has a mixed record of music choices. Some of its needle drops feel almost unbearably on the nose, in a way that can come off as either too much or exactly the right amount of painful."
- Here are some Handmaid's Tale scenes we've earned the right to see
- The Handmaid's Tale needs to swing big in Season 3
- Nine burning questions for Season 3
- Executive producer Warren Littlefield: "I think we're ready to hit the next dimension — and that's one where I think there's a sense of June as a warrior and rising"
Posted Friday 7/13/18 at 3:19PM EDT
Elisabeth Moss defends The Handmaid's Tale's divisive Season 2 finale: "It was the only choice for me"
"I don't want to fight from the outside," says Moss, offering a lengthy explanation for why the Season 2 finale makes sense. She adds of Season 3: "We are not trying to be dark or hopeful. We are concerned with the truth, emotionally and storytelling-wise, and telling the story of this handmaid in the most truthful way possible."
Posted Thursday 7/12/18 at 5:29PM EDT
Netflix got the most Emmy nominations because it had the most shows, not the best ones
With 112 nominations, Netflix overtaking HBO for the most nods "is a reflection of volume, and an emerging status quo," says Willa Paskin. Netflix aired 70 new shows during the nominating period, while HBO aired 20 new and returning shows. "Forget hours: to stay ahead in the prestige game, HBO’s bread and butter, it would seem to have make more series to keep up," says Pasklin. "But there’s another way to look at these numbers. HBO still has way more nominations per show than Netflix does: Of the 10 shows with the most nominations, HBO had three; FX had two; Hulu, Amazon, and Netflix each had one, which is another way of saying that Netflix got the most nominations because it had the most shows, not the best ones." She adds that amid the "overkill" of so many potential contenders, Emmy voters glom on to stuff they could actually remember and start using "brands like HBO, Netflix, and FX to look for contenders. Unlike Netflix and the networks, HBO and FX aren’t trying to appeal to everyone, but in terms of reliably attracting attention for their series, they too are the new networks."
- Netflix didn't do a few shows extremely well -- it did a lot of shows very well
- Netflix dominated by having lots of Emmy-approved shows in many categories, rather than one or two overperforming titles
- Don't write off HBO just yet: It landed more major program noms than anyone else, including the top two scripted series
- Netflix officially rules television with its 112 nominations
- A true changing of the guard will happen when Netflix wins in the major award categories
- Amy Sherman-Palladino, snubbed for Gilmore Girls, reacts to 14 noms for The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel: "Why are they letting me into the club?!"
- John Legend on a possible EGOT: "To do it with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice would be especially cool"
- Rachel Bloom posts a "Super chill" video of her trashing her office in reaction to Crazy Ex-Girlfriend's Emmy snub
- Bill Hader always wanted to do something like Barry, and now his show has earned five nominations
- Henry Winkler's Emmy nomination for Barry is his first for a regular TV role since Happy Days in 1978
- GLOW creators are proud to be part of a "really idiosyncratic group" of nominees
- Twin Peaks co-creator Mark Frost, who was nominated for writing, on major category snub: "External validation is a popsicle"
- Jonathan Van Ness was nominated for Queer Eye and Gay of Thrones
- Here are the 11 best Emmy nomination reactions -- and two of the worst
- American Vandal and Big Mouth each got nominated -- a huge victory for d*ck jokes
- Seven members of The Handmaid's Tale cast received nominations
- Donald Glover and Bill Hader each picked up four nominations, for Atlanta and Barry, respectively -- and for hosting SNL
- Roseanne wasn't snubbed -- it didn't deserve to be nominated
- The Handmaid's Tale's Yvonne Strahovski on her first Emmy nomination: "I can’t stop smiling, my face hurts"
- Megan Mullally was surprised Will & Grace was snubbed
- Regina King was nominated for the fourth year in a row, thanks to Seven Seconds
- Sarah Drew celebrates her surprise Emmy nomination for Grey's Anatomy: B-Team after she was dropped from Grey's Anatomy
# TOPICS: 70th Primetime Emmy Awards, HBO, Netflix, American Vandal, Atlanta, Barry, Big Mouth, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Gay of Thrones, GLOW, Grey's Anatomy: B-Team, The Handmaid's Tale, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Queer Eye, Roseanne, Saturday Night Live, Seven Seconds, Twin Peaks: The Return, Will & Grace, Amy Sherman-Palladino, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Bill Hader, Donald Glover, Henry Winkler, John Legend, Jonathan Van Ness, Mark Frost, Megan Mullally, Rachel Bloom, Regina King, Sarah Drew, Tim Rice, Yvonne Strahovski, Emmys
Posted Thursday 7/12/18 at 5:29PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale creator the defends divisive Season 2 finale, says he understands the frustrations
"I like the fact that people are frustrated," says showrunner Bruce Miller. "I was frustrated. You want her to make a different decision. I love the fact that June does things that we disagree with, that she's driven by her emotions and her brain and her strategy and all of those things, but in different measure than we are. So, I'm glad that people are annoyed by what she did, and have questions about what she did, and I think the reviews help me kind of see how people feel about it because I know how I feel about the moment, but you can't really tell how people are going to react until you get there."
Posted Thursday 7/12/18 at 12:16PM EDT
Netflix ends HBO's 17-year streak of Emmy nomination dominance, Game of Thrones tops all shows
This is the first time in 18 years that HBO has failed to lead all nominations, with Netflix earning 112 Emmy nominations to HBO's 108. The streaming service has been gradually growing with 34 nominations in 2015, 54 in 2016 and 91 last year. Game of Thrones led all shows with 22 Emmy nominations. Saturday Night Live and Westworld tied for second with 21 nominations each, followed by The Handmaid's Tale (20), The Assassination of Gianni Versace (18) and Atlanta (16). Game of Thrones, which wasn't eligible last year, will battle it out with last year's winner, The Handmaid's Tale. Meanwhile, the best actress in a comedy series will be up for grabs for the first time since 2011 since Julia Louis-Dreyfus wasn't eligible as Veep was on hiatus. Black-ish's Tracee Ellis-Ross, Insecure's Issa Rae and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel's Rachel Brosnahan are among the contenders in the best comedy actress category.
- Read the complete list of Emmy nominations
- Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers were snubbed, while Stephen Colbert and James Corden were nominated (The Tonight Show wasn't nominated for best variety talk series a second year in a row)
- Roseanne, Modern Family and Will & Grace were snubbed for best comedy, Killing Eve was snubbed for best drama
- Roseanne did earn two Emmy nominations, including one for Laurie Metcalf
- "It worked": Megan Amram's An Emmy for Megan was nominated for an Emmy in short form comedy or drama series category
- Acting snubs: Kit Harington, John Goodman, Emilia Clarke, Kyle McLachlan, Alison Brie and Freddie Highmore
- The late Anthony Bourdain's Parts Unknown earned six Emmy nominations
- Amy Sedaris, Sarah Silverman and Tracey Ullman to take on SNL in outstanding variety sketch category
- Game of Thrones' Peter Dinklage becomes the most-nominated drama series supporting actor in Emmy history
- The Daily Show with Trevor Noah earned its first nomination for best variety talk series
- Killing Eve's Sandra Oh becomes the first person of Asian descent to be nominated for best actress in a drama
- Samantha Bee's C-word controversy didn't stop Full Frontal from getting nominated for best variety talk series
- The best Emmy nomination reactions: Lin-Manuel Miranda is "Pretty, pretty, pretty grateful" to be nominated for Curb Your Enthusiasm
- Twin Peaks: The Return was snubbed in the major categories, but it did receive nine nominations
- Modern Family ends streak after eight-straight nominations for best comedy: “It was a hell of a run," says co-creator Steve Levitan
- Chrissy Teigen: If John Legend wins for Jesus Christ Superstar Live, "he will complete his EGOT and my spike tv award will probably be moved"
- Viola Davis was snubbed for Hot to Get Away with Murder, but she was nominated for playing the same character on Scandal
- This Is Us fans aren't happy with Mandy Moore's snub
- Kenan Thompson was finally nominated for his SNL acting ability, joining Leslie Jones, Aidy Bryant, Kate McKinnon and Alec Baldwin
- Breaking down Game of Thrones' 22 nominations: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau scores his first nod
- Real Time with Bill Maher was snubbed for the first time since 2004 -- was Maher hurt by N-word and featuring right-wing trolls?
- These actors earned nominations for multiple show: Jane Lynch, Donald Glover, Alex Borstein, Jeff Daniels and Sterling K. Brown
# TOPICS: 70th Primetime Emmy Awards, ABC, Amazon, CBS, FX, HBO, Hulu, NBC, Netflix, An Emmy for Megan, Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, At Home With Amy Sedaris, Atlanta, Black-ish, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, Game of Thrones, The Handmaid's Tale, I Love You, America, Insecure, Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, Killing Eve, The Late Late Show with James Corden, Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Modern Family, Real Time with Bill Maher, Roseanne, Saturday Night Live, This is Us, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Tracey Ullman’s Show, Twin Peaks: The Return, Veep, Westworld, Will & Grace, Aidy Bryant, Alec Baldwin, Alex Borstein, Alison Brie, Amy Sedaris, Anthony Bourdain, Bill Maher, Chrissy Teigen, Donald Glover, Emilia Clarke, Freddie Highmore, Issa Rae, James Corden, Jane Lynch, Jeff Daniels, Jimmy Fallon, John Goodman, John Legend, Julia Louis Dreyfus, Kate McKinnon, Kenan Thompson, Kit Harington, Kyle MacLachlan, Laurie Metcalf, Leslie Jones, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mandy Moore, Megan Amram, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Peter Dinklage, Rachel Brosnahan, Samantha Bee, Sandra Oh, Sarah Silverman, Seth Meyers, Stephen Colbert, Sterling K. Brown, Steve Levitan, Tracee Ellis Ross, Tracey Ullman, Trevor Noah, Viola Davis, Award Shows, Emmys
Posted Wednesday 7/11/18 at 9:21PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale and The Real Housewives of New York City have been the perfect Wednesday summer double feature
"The far extremes of television entertainment, these two," says Darren Franich. "The Manhattan affiliate of Bravo’s docu-soap franchise is real-ish farce, starring personalities who once were human, showdowning Hamptonite social etiquette over winebrunch. The Handmaid’s Tale is a dark drama, important enough to win Hulu some Emmy Awards, requiring star Elizabeth Moss to soulshriek the sins of misogyny through her eyeballs. You could say the entertainment value came from the dissonance — like the lost days of Must See TV, when the sitcom antics of Seinfeld and, like, Caroline in the City dead-ended into the sliver-of-human-hope drama ER. But there has been something extra-special, horrifically necessary, about 'Handmaids & Housewives' in 2018."
- Yvonne Strahovski was pregnant from Episode 9 onward: "I’ve heard a thousand 'Blessed be the fruit' jokes"
- Strahovski's Serena was the only reason to watch Season 2
- Season 2 finale set up a compelling new direction for The Handmaid's Tale
- Season 2 was a case of brilliant acting accompanied by frustrating storytelling
- Amanda Brugel won a college scholarship 20 years ago from her essay on her Handmaid's Tale character
- Handmaid's Tale composer Adam Taylor: "I think of the orchestra as the sound of humanity in the midst of everything"
Posted Wednesday 7/11/18 at 1:35PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale Season 2 finale defied logic
Calling the finale twist "transparently manufactured," Sophie Gilbert says: "The biggest problem throughout the two seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale has been that the show can’t quite find a way to unite its world-building ambitions with the constrained environment of (Margaret) Atwood’s book." She adds: "The TV adaptation, being set during a time of smartphones and pussy hats and instant messaging, can’t quite get to grips with how a repressive state like Gilead might coexist with 21st century America, which leads to logical fallacies like the one prompted by Oprah’s cameo in the 11th episode. The more the show offers scenes outside of June’s perspective, the more questions it raises. What’s happening in New York City? What about the West Coast? Are upwards of 300 million Americans really being governed by a theocracy of a dozen commanders in Boston? Where have all the celebrities gone? Which is perhaps why the series so often returns to its comfort zone—as frustrating as it might be for viewers, and as narratively incoherent."
- The Handmaid's Tale appears to be falling victim to the same problems that plague The Walking Dead
- Season 2 attempted to bend sympathies well beyond any conceivable breaking point
- The Handmaid’s Tale as a whole has become something of a slog, burdened by aimless plotting and a seemingly endless onslaught of trauma
- Maybe it's a good thing that The Handmaid's Tale is choosing the less interesting path forward
- It tried to have its traumatic past match up with our traumatic present, and only made itself messier as a result
- Season 2 strayed from one of the book's significant ideas: that Elisabeth Moss' June is ordinary
- Creator Bruce Miller: "There was incredible amount of push back from me and from everybody else"
- "I think there is a happy ending, and I don't think everything's always going to be terrible," says Miller
- Why does The Handmaid's Tale keep lending its name to awful merchandise?
- Margaret Atwood says in her Masterclass promo she didn't make up all the bad things in The Handmaid's Tale
Posted Tuesday 7/10/18 at 11:58PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale wine collection canceled after backlash
After further consideration, Lot18 and MGM have decided to cancel their Handmaid's Tale-inspired wine collection, according to People magazine, which first announced the wine collection Tuesday morning in a report that was met with backlash on Twitter. “Can you turn rape into marketing copy?” tweeted New York Times TV critic Margaret Lyons. "Why the f*ck does The Handmaid’s Tale have a line of branded wines?" wrote Allison Shoemaker in the Takeout, pointing out that the wine collection will be using the names of characters assigned to them by Gilead. "This bears repeating: The Handmaid’s Tale can be great, but it is not fun," said Shoemaker. "It is not The Bachelorette or some sh*t. And sure, it often makes me want to drink. Heavily. But my god, branded wines? Over on Slate, Inkoo Kang thought up product tie-ins more offensive than Handmaid's Tale wines, including "Offred's Muzzle" and "'Handmaid in the Oven' Maternity Wear." Kang added that The Handmaid's Tale's real-life "tie-ins have been as tone-deaf as the show has felt timely: a clothing line inspired by those haunting red cloaks, a pink pen promising empowerment, and as of Tuesday, a new line of wines inspired by three of the show’s female characters...What genius do we have to thank for the ability to buy a bottle of Offred and discard her husk once we’re done with her insides?"
Posted Tuesday 7/10/18 at 5:52PM EDT
Kim Kardashian: "There’s literally nothing on TV that I like"
The Keeping Up with the Kardashian star was reminded that she was the star of a TV show when she tweeted last night: "Too many people have suggested Handmaid’s Tale... I think I’m gonna start watching it. There’s literally nothing on TV that I like."
Posted Tuesday 7/10/18 at 1:20PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale launches a wine collection
Hulu has partnered with Lot18.com for red wines based on Elisabeth Moss and Alexis Bledel‘s characters, Offred and Ofglen. A white wine based on Yvonne Strahovski‘s Serena Joy will also be available.
Posted Saturday 7/07/18 at 10:36AM EDT
Watching The Handmaid's Tale is masochistic in present-day America
"Of course the show couldn’t have predicted the actions of the government or how closely it would mirror its events," says Alex Zaragoza, "but writers were well aware of the Trump administration’s intent. So the patriotism and nostalgia for a bygone America on full display is a bitter pill to swallow. America is not so beautiful right now, even if it’s not as bad as Gilead. Even so, this show can’t make me feel proud or wistful of an America that built Gilead, on screen and off." ALSO: Where are all the celebrities on The Handmaid's Tale?
Posted Friday 6/29/18 at 10:56PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale director says too many childbirth scenes are "sanitized" because they are filmed by men
That's why director Daina Reid says more women should be behind the lens. “We can portray an experience like that in a much more visceral, experiential way, as opposed to an idea of what it would be,” she says. “I think it’s important to have a visceral, realized version of all female experiences, because I think often we do not get that... Women are starved of watching the world through their own lens, across the board.”
Posted Thursday 6/28/18 at 1:18PM EDT
Samira Wiley and Ryan Eggold will announce the Emmy nominations
The Handmaid's Tale Emmy nominee and the New Amsterdam star will unveil the nominations at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 12.
Posted Wednesday 6/27/18 at 9:42PM EDT
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement announcement was greeted by comparisons to The Handmaid's Tale
"Okay yes I love the Handmaids Tale - that doesn’t mean I want to live in it," tweeted Whitney Cummings in reaction to Kennedy's retirement news. "Handmaid's Tale season finale spoiler alert," added TV critic Hank Stuever. "For many on Wednesday, the answer (to the news) was obvious: we'll be in Gilead, the misogynistic nightmare future America of Margaret Atwood's classic The Handmaid's Tale," says Chris Taylor, pointing to the likelihood that President Trump's next Supreme Court pick will help make abortion illegal in many red states. Taylor adds: "No one, least of all (Margaret) Atwood, can pretend to predict the future. But that also means we can't pretend to know that a Gilead-like repressive patriarchal state isn't in our future, and we certainly can't call the threat over-hyped. The only thing we can reasonably do is fight like hell at every possible juncture to prevent the warning from becoming reality."
Posted Wednesday 6/27/18 at 9:42PM EDT
The Handmaid's Tale is hard to watch this season because of how it parallels current events
"Current events — actual real world happenings — are inching toward meeting up with early days of the dystopian nightmare that is Gilead much more than a woman like me is comfortable with," says Melanie McFarland. "To anyone battling Trump fatigue, the offer of being further sickened and drained by our entertainment just feels unnecessarily cruel. This is not the fault of its producers or Margaret Atwood, who wrote the novel upon which it’s based decades ago. On the contrary, the fact that binging the second half of the season on Tuesday led me to crawl into bed and sleep for 10 hours straight indicates how potent and artistically brilliant Atwood's vision, and how this series realized it, happens to be. Two thumbs up, seriously . . . although if this were Gilead I might not have thumbs, since the punishment for being a woman caught reading is the loss of a finger."