On the hunt for your next TV obsession? Hulu’s newest drama series The Handmaid’s Tale launches today and we can confirm that the show is extremely binge-worthy. Luckily, the first three episodes are available on the streaming service now so you can get started right away. After today, new episodes will launch every Wednesday.
Based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel, The Handmaid’s Tale takes place in Gilead, a near-future dystopia that was formerly the United States. After civil unrest and a plunging birthrate, a fundamentalist group overthrows the American government and sets up a totalitarian regime with a goal to restore traditional values and repopulate the world.
Elisabeth Moss plays Offred, a handmaid in the society’s new caste, who’s forced into sexual servitude after being one of the few remaining fertile women. She lives in the house of a Commander (Joseph Fiennes), where she performs her bodily duties under the watchful eye of his wife (Yvonne Strahovski). Between the Commander, his wife, the domestic Marthas who act as servants, and the other handmaids, not a single person she comes in contact with is trustworthy—that is until she meets Ofglen (Alexis Bledel), another handmaid who has ideas of rebellion.
If that storyline doesn’t draw you in (and fully stress you out), we have five other reasons you’ll want to binge watch this new series asap. Check them out below.
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1. THE TV SERIES BUILDS ON THE BOOK
Hulu’s version of Margaret Atwood’s story takes the foundation of the novel and adds to it. So even if you’ve read the book, there will still be new and exciting things to catch within the series. We won’t give too much away, but trust us, it makes for good TV.
2. THE CAST IS LEGIT
The cast alone will make you want to tune in. Of course, Mad Men's Elisabeth Moss leads the series. Then there's Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski, Alexis Bledel, Samira Wiley, Max Minghella, and Ann Dowd in supporting roles.
3. IT FEELS ODDLY RELEVANT
Thanks to today’s political climate, the story’s dystopian future doesn’t feel all that far off. We’re experiencing our own versions of unrest and instability, not unlike the pre-Gilead America. It’s scary to think that Atwood’s novel could be our own reality. Watch the series to ... prepare?
4. IT WILL CREEP YOU OUT
Nothing in this show feels unrealistic—that alone will chill you to the bone. Aside from that, there’s public beatings, hangings, and terror everywhere you look. Even the handmaid’s “wings”—the flaps on their bonnet that prevent them from seeing too much around them—will creep you out.
5. THE COSTUMES ARE INCREDIBLE
Speaking of costumes, it’s fascinating to see them come to life, right book readers? The blood red handmaids’ coats, the wives' pale blue chaste dresses, even the military garb reeks of totalitarianism. You’ll be drawn in by the spectacle of it all.