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  1. He might, to help make the USSR more like the USA at that time, so people there would be able to have basic things for a decent life, food, water, clothing, shelter, some kind of voice. I can think of thousands of regular USA citizens, never having been KGB, or even Russian, who might have done the same. The two things really aren't in handcuffs together. He didn't NEED to be devoted to the USSR or especially to the KGB who was trying to stop all of that in it's tracks and murder Gorbachev to want a better life for his former home. But it was all false. Stan's "conscience" would be a valid reason to make sure Gorbachev was warned and the modernization of the Soviet Union and increased safety of the world due to the nuclear arms treaty could have been accomplished without letting two people who had murdered dozens, if not hundreds of Americans over their decades in the USA. I outlined how that could happen, but there are numerous other ways as well. Philip or Elizabeth's presence in the USSR was not required for the message to get through. A simple phone call would have done it. My family was the victim of a cruel and painful murder. The murderers got off because the police didn't do their job correctly out of "feelings." My family has never got over the loss and horrifying murder of my brother, let alone the lax police involved who messed it up. Were I the wife/child/brother/sister/lover/friend of those people murdered by Elizabeth and Philip over the years? I would be furious at Stan Beeman. Indeed, he broke so many laws of both the land, and of morals that it makes me sick. One of the most important things that we are suppose to have in the USA is that separation. Police find and ARREST. Lawyers defend in a court with a judge and often a jury. The jury (or judge) is the one who decides and pronounces sentence. It's not a vigilante system where the guy with the badge is judge/jury/executioner. It doesn't ALWAYS work, but it's a founding principal of our country and legal system and it's there for a REASON, reasons Stan swore to uphold. Of course it's fiction, but this show prided itself on being true to circumstances. We discuss all of it as if it were real most of the time. That's the way they tried to portray it (with the exceptions of their stars doing things they would never do, break ins, murders, etc.) In this world? No, I don't believe it was in any way OK for Stan to do what he did. Not in any way, not ever. I loved the show for a long time, but the final season wore me down in every way. I tried rewatching it to see if my feelings would change and I would be able to accept it. I could not. I detest this no ending ending where the ONLY logical conclusion is terrible ends for all. I think it blew. Believe me I do get what you both are saying, as I said, we just disagree about this finale and the event leading up to it. We disagree to a great level, but I still xoxo you guys and enjoy your posts.
  2. So you believe that Stan, a law enforcement officer, an FBI agent, the top of that heap, was justified in letting people who murdered dozens and dozens of people, many of them innocent bystanders, several our of military personal, fellow FBI agents, and others go? Wow. To hell with the families and friends of all of those people, Stan's FEELINGS were so much more important than his country, those families, his duty, the murdered people, or his oath. He did not need to let them go in order to warn Gorbachev, there was absolutely no reason Philip or Elizabeth had to go to the USSR for that to be accomplished. One call from the director to the White House and Gorbachev would have been informed. Reagan wanted those talks to proceed as much as Gorbachev did, and he certainly didn't want Gorbachev ousted to be replaced by hard liners. Reagan would have called him himself, and possibly put Elizabeth on the phone with him if necessary.
  3. I've addressed all of that so often @sistermagpie. We just disagree. Philip and his children could have had a great life, and Philip would have found someone else, even though he doesn't believe it, and thinks this is true love. What he needed was more than EST, he needed a therapist, which was impossible because he would have to divulge that he was KGB for it to be effective, which would put him and Liz in jail. EXCEPT, had he the strength to get away from toxic Elizabeth, saving both himself and his children by defecting? He COULD have had honest therapy via the FBI, who of course would already know he had been KGB. Instead he's about to be killed, and his children's lives are ruined, and if he's very lucky he won't be tortured before being killed. Ditto his "true love" Elizabeth. Woo. Great decisions there Philip.
  4. I know what they were trying to write, and obviously it worked for a LOT of people. 😉 Indeed, it worked for most people! I am one of the odd-people out here. I get it. For me though, and we've been over this before, he didn't just want to defect in the first episode (we don't need to go 'round and 'round this point again) he wanted OUT. He only wanted out though, if his (you say LOVE, I say OBSESSION) Elizabeth would come with him. Honestly, in some ways we are both right. I accept that he loved her. I just think it was an unhealthy love, that veered into obsession because while it was great for Elizabeth? It was terrible for him, and even worse for his children. To me, love shouldn't be destructive to your own life, and once it is? Once you must live in a way that "makes you feel like shit all the time" in order to keep that "love" in your life? It's a sickness, it's unhealthy, which, by my definition, makes it something other than a real love. At one point Elizabeth did try to compromise a tiny bit, she "let him stop" as much as she could, but then, by the time the final season rolled around? She obviously RESENTED him, and what's more? Treated him like shit. She turned his daughter against him, at the very least allowed Paige to dislike, ignore, disrespect him, and worst? She encouraged that. The reality was that it was ALWAYS "her way or the highway." Philip was never really allowed to be "out." He had to maintain their cover. He was living with two spies for the KGB, worried endlessly for them, his wife and his daughter, people he loved, weren't out, so there was no way he could be "out" either. Elizabeth's mind was closed. She was very basic. KGB/USSR good, USA bad. She refused to allow any reality or truth to infringe on her closed mind. Philip, like a little whipped puppy, hung around for what? Crumbs? Hope that Elizabeth might finally see the truth staring her in the face from multiple sources (the Russian Couple, the African, William, etc.?) He stayed because of HER. He didn't want any part of it, except HER. He was willing to sacrifice his own self for HER. He was willing to sacrifice and risk his own children for HER. That's a sickness, not a healthy love. We will never agree, and that's OK. I see your points, I really do, I just don't agree. 😉
  5. There were television cameras, and mentions of newspapers writing stories about the two sisters that escaped, during their landing. The reporters probably surmised that the document dump was connected to the two of them (I honestly can't imagine Mayday sharing that information however, and there is nothing that says the newspapers mentioned the microdot, just that they were releasing those files.) So they had their 15 minutes, probably more like at least 2 weeks of some kind of fame, and that might have helped rally all the resistance fighters against Gilead that were still fighting. I'm sure it was a boost to morale. The real damage was done by the document dump from Aunt Lydia though, and that is ultimate what weakened Gilead and caused even more purges of the Commander class, leaving them extremely vulnerable to attack from both within and without. I guess it could go either way after that. My surmise was that they were all disappeared quietly by Mayday, and June faded back into the woodwork soon after the reunion. There was no mention of either father being there for the girls at that time, but it sounds like they met them at some point. Even after Gilead fell for good though, they would still have enemies, so probably lived fairly quietly...I don't think they became The Kardashians. If anything, interviews with them after that first rush would probably be done in secret, without cameras shortly after that, and June would have had to fade into the woodwork very soon, since she was still a target of assassins. That statue that didn't even mention their names is a huge clue to that, even grandchildren later, they didn't put any of their names out there, and none on the documents secreted away in that boat's files either. So care was taken. Which is what I would expect, especially since Gilead had spies and helpers inside of Canada, and didn't fail completely for a few more years at least. Your version could be true I suppose, but it would be extremely dangerous, and I doubt either girl would live long enough for grandchildren, or even children of their own, and their mother would certainly be dead if she lived in the open. Perhaps, after Gilead was completely dead for a few years, they could have lived more openly, or, more likely, relocated to California, Hawaii, or Europe, but then why no names on that statue plaque?
  6. What he is SUPPOSEDLY fighting for is the betterment of the entire world, and all it's people. You know, so that they could have basic things like reliable water and lights and decent homes, something HIS country did not provide. Aside from that, he wanted to defect. He didn't want to fight for the USSR anymore. He was coerced to stay in the fight (KGB) because of his obsession with Elizabeth. It was his only reason. The USA was a better option because the FBI did one thing really well, hide people. (Which the show ignored for that ridiculous storyline.) Had Sweden or some other country been able to hide them from the KGB, he would probably rather have been there. One thing he didn't want to do? Stay in the KGB, or go back to a country with no food, shared "housing" and all of the other problems and corruption and fear that was there.
  7. https://the-handmaids-tale.fandom.com/wiki/Geography_of_Gilead Not really spoilers, but certainly not yet shown on TV, so I will put them here, the maps we've seen so far, but some nice close ups and a bit of analysis on this page.
  8. I wanted to mention Commander Judd. Him looking like "Santa Claus" did remind me quite a bit of Commander Lawrence. It was odd, at some point I wondered if the show writers had a clue about this other commander, but not much of one. Obviously probably just a coincidence that they looked so similar, their roles were certainly different. Still, a tiny bit jarring as I kept picturing Bradley Whitford! It distracted me a little bit, and after putting the book down, I started thinking about Whitford as Judd, and being glad he wasn't! Will the show tackle the whole Commander who kills each young wife as she gets a bit older and less attractive as the virginal pubescent child? That might be a very fine line to walk... ETA Also wanted to mention the one nod to racial injustices that Atwood included in the book, or at least mentioned as another fiasco. The "Certificate of Whiteness." I'd also like to know more about that whole relocation or resettlement thing in North Dakota. Actually, I want to know all of it. Why? Who did they send? It sounds like a Gilead thing to do, and the tales of some of them managing to escape to Canada, frostbite and missing fingers/toes/noses and all certainly sounds like a harrowing tale. Although I doubt the "military" side of things referred to in the epilogue will ever actually materialize? I would LOVE, LOVE it if Atwood did write yet another book that discusses those sides of Gilead's failures. Specifically the entire west coast, most of Texas, parts of Missouri, Utah, and the Chicago/Detroit areas resistance and successes! Interestingly enough, this quite matches the map that leaked, except for Missouri. I really want to know, less about the military side, but more about how they were living, who was leading them, how many of those leaders were female, when and how did all of those groups reunite with Alaska and Hawaii to bring down Gilead for good? How many former Army/Navy/Marine/Coast Guard/National Guard members did they have helping them? All of that. Come on Margaret! Just one more book!
  9. I disagree with "mentally" teenagers as well. There were millions of supporters, inside and outside of Russia, they weren't ALL stupid. I hope you're wrong about that last part. You are almost definitely correct, but I still have some shreds of hope that human beings can eventually evolve to a more peaceful and equitable way of living. Well, those were Philip's words. Something like "What is so bad about having electricity that works and clean water all the time, and food to eat?" or words like that when he was talking to Elizabeth (possibly about defection or at least about the USA life they led.) There IS nothing wrong about wanting those things, for yourself or for your family. Which country was really providing for "the workers" in the best way? He was making a point, as am I. That point has nothing to do with selfishness or with making those material things the only thing that matters to someone. He was looking at both systems and asking a very real question there, for the average person which one was better, or more acceptable. He was looking at the whole picture, and the Soviet System at that point had many decades to improve the lives of the ordinary people, and massively failed, and it was getting even worse, not better. He saw the faults in the USA as well of course, but his eyes and ears were open, not shut, as fanatical and patriotic Elizabeth's were, and remained until the show ended. As we all know, shortly after that, the hopeless inept and corrupt soviet system did collapse, in the end, it was Philip who was correct, and Elizabeth who was wrong. Of course, the same thing as far as corruption at least, thing may happen in the USA at some point as well. Fanatics never see collapses coming.
  10. Well, we don't know where that van takes her in the book, it could be quite similar to what happens on the show, or it could be something completely different. There is no correlation between getting in the van and it taking Offred to the cabin in Maine. We don't even know if she was ever IN that cabin, the tapes could have been left there at any time and they didn't have to be left by her. I am not AT ALL sure they are "celebrities" at all. Where did that idea come from? They have been asked to tell their stories, and those are documented. We don't know if they were "public record" or top secret and just kept in Mayday files for years. Even the statue their children and grandchildren erect at the end is vague, no "celebrity" status, just first names of the daughters, no names of the mother or fathers. It's quite likely that they all remained as incognito as possible even after Gilead collapses, after all, Gilead had those supporters in the Canadian government, and certainly not all of the leaders would be executed, and then there are the Eyes. June, her daughters, and her two Mayday husbands would probably have still been in danger, from those resenting that they helped bring down Gilead. Did I miss something about fame or celebrity? The frog boiling part (from the first book, not just the show) was all of the little things that were happening for years. Things described in the show and in the book, abortion being made illegal (June's mom was protesting that) and the rise of the ultra religious right, the back to basics movements, the denigration of women choosing to work instead of "old fashioned values" and honoring men, book burning, etc. The 3 branches of government being slaughtered, martial law declared, and frozen bank accounts WERE the quick part, or the microwaved part. So it was BOTH a slow boil for a few years and then the BOOM quick final bombings/takeover. Both were part of it. It sounded like that torture went on for over a month, possibly two months. I agree they probably had other women groomed, but how many of those were "wives" rather than people who could do what Aunts would do? Indeed, these were the ultimate misogynists and I can believe that they had their hands rather full with, I dunno, destroying the entire United State's government and taking over everything. Judd's not wanting to waste his or his fellow commanders precious time on "women things" does fit, they had a hell of a lot to do, rebuild a country from the ground up, wars everywhere with those who fought them, handling trade, the world, getting all the letters removed, redesigning everything from grocery stores, to trade, to medical care, hell all of it was redone. Would they have had more "Vidalias?" Maybe, but given their disdain and dislike for women, perhaps they overestimated some of them, and once the shooting started, and bombs, some of the other "Vidalias" crumpled or were found to be useless or annoying. Anyway, there are many reasons Judd, initially being stuck with the rather large task "handle the women" wouldn't want to do that, or would realize he wanted to delegate that less than stellar title/role and move on to more lucrative and honorable roles himself. So, he picked out the women he thought had those kinds of skills, did his various tortures, broke them, then plucked the best of those left from the blood. Win Win for him, and he gets to move on to a different and more respectable role, while at the same time taking credit for the Aunts work. It all fits for me, and while I see what you mean about "knowing they made it from the beginning" that part didn't bother me at all, it was still a page turner for me... In the beginning I had no idea who they were telling their story to, let alone at what stage of their life they were doing it. Obviously by the boat and rowing part, I knew they made it at least to someplace to WRITE or "tell" all of this, but honestly, that could have been back in Gilead, or years later. So I didn't really know until the very end that they indeed make it to Canada, and are reunited with June. After that I suspect they, like their mother, remained in hiding for a very long time.
  11. It certainly wasn't just teenagers though. I just watched REDS again, and though it's certainly not definitive about those times, or even the problems in the USA at that time, it still had quite a bit of truth to it. Intelligent people from other countries also believed in a system where workers were equals and massive wealth didn't just all go to a few people, and instead was more widely shared, with all work considered as honorable. There were many many factors that led to it all not succeeding of course, but I don't think it was childish. They didn't want to be dragged into the BS WWI either, which was another (of many) factors.
  12. Philip's family was very poor. To get an offer from the KGB was like hitting the jackpot in the USSR. For Elizabeth, not quite as poor, it was the whole honor of the thing and also making up for her father's "desertion." I put "desertion" in quotes because when her father was shot, it wouldn't have mattered if he only had a shovel against tanks, hadn't had food or water for days, and was overrun by the enemy. Anyone surrendering or falling back was a traitor to be shot. It's quite possible he would have died either way. Still, it was a stain on Elizabeth's honor, and serving her country in the KGB could reverse that. Actually, even with the spying and the murdering, they probably ended up having better lives than their contemporaries back home, friends, Philip's brother, etc. Shorter lives perhaps because of Elizabeth's mistakes and stubbornness, but all in all, they ate well, they had electricity, running water all the time, weren't sharing their home with several other families, their kids had decent schools and clothes to wear, as did they. Henry never had to kill other boys after walking a few miles for the family's ration of milk. Far better than Philip's earlier life when his father brought home torn and bloody clothing and boots for his wife to wash and mend (probably from prisoners who were shot.)
  13. I think she saw his reaction, body or facial language.
  14. I hope so! We have a thread for that now, so I won't talk about it here, except to say, HEY BRUCE MILLER! Follow Margaret Atwood's new book even more than you already are!
  15. Here is the short paragraph from Aunt Lydia I was talking about above. Page 149. She's been beaten 3 times while in the isolation completely dark Thank Tank, after all the previous indignities and tortures designed to turn human beings into animals, as she puts it. Italics Atwood. "Did I weep? Yes: Tears came out of my two visible eyes, my moist weeping human eyes. But I had a third eye, in the middle of my forehead. I could feel it: it was cold, like a stone. It did not weep: it saw. And behind it someone was thinking: I will get you back for this. I don't care how long it takes or how much shit I have to eat in the meantime, but I will do it." That was chilling and powerful to me, but not until the second read through. I think I was rushing a bit too much, since this one is definitely a page turner, during the first read. On second read, I think Aunt Lydia's entire future life was decided in that moment, during that vow.
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