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S04.E5: Chicago

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What does happen when you retire from aunt-dom? Or even the econo class? Do they live a life of leisure? Or just work til they drop?

 June should really have come up with an alias. Seems like everyone knows who June Osborn is and what she’s done. It would have been safer to take another handmaids name or just make up something totally new. Some people will have her picture but with the lack of tech being used it won’t be everyone. That might make too much sense though.

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About Nick... I think at one point he may have really cared about June and the baby and all... but I think he’s starting to get corrupted by the power and enjoying the power  (maybe not fully realizing it) and if given the chance he’ll betray June to keep the power/position. From the Swiss (?) negotiations it sounds like there is nothing for him outside of Gilead even if he could get out, he’s some type of war criminal or something. 

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3 hours ago, EllaWycliffe said:

Well, there definitely is a tone of "all men suck" on this show, which is unfortunate. One significant reason I see Gilead's world building not working is that men don't universally hate women. Do none of these men have sisters or mothers or daughters? Does Nick not have a mom? Or a sister? What about Fred?

I don't know about that - I can think of counterexamples. The men in Canada don't suck (Luke, those working with the refugee movement, the prosecutor who tried to talk Serena into defecting, etc.), and there were men working in the underground who got June between safe houses when she made a run for the border way back when (i.e., when she holed up at the former offices of the Boston Globe), and certainly the secret Muslim fellow who agreed, despite the grave risk, to help her hide (and ended up on the wall for it).

There seemed to have been men at Mrs. Keys's place who were in on the hiding of the handmaids who came with June. The Bradley Whitford character clearly has redeeming qualities. June has run across at least one other housemaid where the head of household refused to participate in the rape ceremony, even though this puts everyone at risk if they are found out. I'm sure I could come up with others.

Naturally we see plenty of the worst behavior of the men of Gilead, because that's what causes all the harm. But there are certainly glimpses of men who have retained their humanity and/or are working against the regime. 

 

Edited by akr · Reason: added a paragraph break for ease of reading
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Okay, real truth here. I was for much of my youth and young adulthood in a christian cult. Afterwards I spent considerable time talking to other people who were in similar situations and there seemed to be a common thread among husbands and men in them. Perfectly nice, reasonable men, once given the ideology of patriarchy and men as heads and women as subjects etc tended to become more and more entitled and abusive and just generally dickish the longer they spent in that ideology. Not all of them, but enough to let you know that something psychological was happening there. Given the greenlight to be a dick, they adapted to being a dick and really got into the whole 'lord and master' idea of manhood and acted superior and demanded obedience etc. And the longer they were in it the more restrictive the leaders became. They were always finding new things to obsess about - clothing on women, women's attitudes in marriage being responsible for anything 'wrong' a man might do, etc. They would really get into those Victorian paintings of young sisters dressing demurely and brushing each other's hair or performing some domestic chore, like that was their ideal of daughters and wives. They became weird about their daughters and started defending underage marriage as an ideal. It is a large subject and I'm only barely scratching the surface here. But the thing I am trying to convey is that these men weren't like this before. They evolved into it given an ideology and leadership that gave them 'permission' and promoted this kind of thinking.

So I can totally see why the men of Gilead act the way they do -- the more they adhere to the ideology, the more into it they become because it benefits them and frees them from a lot of responsibility for their own behavior. Women are the root of all that a man does wrong. Control the women and you will free the men to be a God designed them to be etc. You have tacit, even explicit, permission to be a dick. You are rewarded for it.

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And I will say this: wives in Gilead have been reduced to a decorative item in the home, much like a vase or an ornamental tea set. They dress modestly in their blue fitted sheath dresses which fall demurely and enticingly at just the right point on their always slim shapely calves. And they always always always wear those damn stiletto shoes, to make the leg and ankle look so appealing. Women did not choose that as the required footwear for all occasions. Serena still wears them even as she says she is trying to keep off her feet due to pregnancy. Can't not wear the mandatory stiletto heels, even in Canada, even if the outfit provided to her isn't blue. She's a wife of Gilead, after all, and wives wear stiletto heels.

How stifling it would be to be reduced to that and nothing else. They have no function other than motherhood. They can garden, or knit, or raise a child. All else is forbidden to them. Imagine the long years stretching out before you knowing that this is all you have to occupy your time. No wonder they are obsessed with getting a baby. It's the only thing that validates their existence on Earth. Without a child they may as well just turn into a tasteful rug laid out in the dining room. They would serve some purpose then.

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34 minutes ago, Andyourlittledog2 said:

And I will say this: wives in Gilead have been reduced to a decorative item in the home, much like a vase or an ornamental tea set. They dress modestly in their blue fitted sheath dresses which fall demurely and enticingly at just the right point on their always slim shapely calves. And they always always always wear those damn stiletto shoes, to make the leg and ankle look so appealing. Women did not choose that as the required footwear for all occasions. Serena still wears them even as she says she is trying to keep off her feet due to pregnancy. Can't not wear the mandatory stiletto heels, even in Canada, even if the outfit provided to her isn't blue. She's a wife of Gilead, after all, and wives wear stiletto heels.

How stifling it would be to be reduced to that and nothing else. They have no function other than motherhood. They can garden, or knit, or raise a child. All else is forbidden to them. Imagine the long years stretching out before you knowing that this is all you have to occupy your time. No wonder they are obsessed with getting a baby. It's the only thing that validates their existence on Earth. Without a child they may as well just turn into a tasteful rug laid out in the dining room. They would serve some purpose then.

It all has a very STEPFORD WIVES feel to it. 

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4 hours ago, Andyourlittledog2 said:

And I will say this: wives in Gilead have been reduced to a decorative item in the home, much like a vase or an ornamental tea set. They dress modestly in their blue fitted sheath dresses which fall demurely and enticingly at just the right point on their always slim shapely calves. And they always always always wear those damn stiletto shoes, to make the leg and ankle look so appealing. Women did not choose that as the required footwear for all occasions. Serena still wears them even as she says she is trying to keep off her feet due to pregnancy. Can't not wear the mandatory stiletto heels, even in Canada, even if the outfit provided to her isn't blue. She's a wife of Gilead, after all, and wives wear stiletto heels.

It reminds me of the Chinese footbinding, partly a status symbol as it signified that the woman wouldn't need to work on a farm or similar.

The Wife is probably the most disposable member of the household for a Commander. The Handmaid is needed to produce babies. The Marthas take care of the house and, in most cases, any children. Guardians act as chauffeurs/security.

It's rather a pity that they didn't include the part from the book about the Wives taking it in turns to be sick, and take to their beds for a few days while the others visited with gifts. It would have been a very effective illustration of how little they have in their lives.

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@Andyourlittledog2, thank you for the insight.  It is a good time to remember that Atwood has said many times that the conditions/situations in her book all come from real life examples from some place and time in history.  I'm sure she looked into cult mindsets in her research, too.  So it's not just the events in the book/on screen that have roots in history, but the character mindsets, too. 

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15 hours ago, toomuchtv said:

About Nick... I think at one point he may have really cared about June and the baby and all... but I think he’s starting to get corrupted by the power and enjoying the power  (maybe not fully realizing it) and if given the chance he’ll betray June to keep the power/position. From the Swiss (?) negotiations it sounds like there is nothing for him outside of Gilead even if he could get out, he’s some type of war criminal or something. 

That's true.

He's kind of in the same position Commander Lawrence was in.  At first Lawrence just knew he had to get his wife out of there, and June offered the solution of possible amnesty for him if she showed up as the main rescuer of 86 kids and a good number of Martha's and Handmaids to boot.  He didn't give a shit about the rest of them, but he wanted to get his wife better care, be with her, and not be tried for war crimes.

From what the Swiss told June, if anything, Nick may be even more certain of trial, possible death for war crimes than even the chief architect of Gilead, Lawrence.  What I remember of that is that Nick was involved with the murders at the White House and Congress.  His only choice may be sticking with Gilead, or that may be the only choice he sees.

5 hours ago, chaifan said:

@Andyourlittledog2, thank you for the insight.  It is a good time to remember that Atwood has said many times that the conditions/situations in her book all come from real life examples from some place and time in history.  I'm sure she looked into cult mindsets in her research, too.  So it's not just the events in the book/on screen that have roots in history, but the character mindsets, too. 

Yes, thank you.  

I'm sorry you went through all of that, it must be very interesting watching the show with your own experiences around many corners.  

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I'm always reminded of Calvin's Geneva, which is pretty much what present day Seven Mountains dominionism was/is trying to achieve -- an America that is a theocracy based on Calvinist puritan ideology. They basically long to create a kind of Gilead in America. Not necessarily a Handmaid version of it but still.

I'll post this last as spoiler since it references The Testaments.

Spoiler

I like that we are starting to see cracks in Lydia. Some have called it her redemption arc, but it follows the second book rather nicely, and I'm glad they are setting the groundwork and not just suddenly changing Lydia into someone else.

 

Edited by Andyourlittledog2
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One other thing that ticks me off about the Janine cliffhanger is that we've all been waiting years for the moment when Moira and June meet again.  Now we finally had that moment, and it was overshadowed by worry that Janine could be dead.  That's how life works sometimes, but for a show with so few joyful moments, this was a missed opportunity.

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So glad that people are bringing up that Gilead is not fun. It is a real problem with books and stories about totalitarian societyies because I often wonder what’s in this for anybody? It’s a problem that Gilead is really rather a new society, it ha to be because June’s daughter is still so young, yet there are people who seem to be so completely indoctrinated into let’s face it a society that it’s barely 10 years old. I mean every single adult in that society everyone has a clear memory of what life was like before. It is not really possible.

 

I have been teaching 1984. The world of 1984 is actually far more plausible, because it begins when the world has been in place for about 30 years. Winston, the protagonist, tries to talk to an old man at a pub about what was like like before. He realizes that there are not so many people who remember it, and he’s not sure of his old memories. It doesn’t help that the party is constantly rewriting the past and in fact that is Winston‘s job. But it just goes beyond belief that you have people who seem so firm the indoctrinated into being wives I mean 10 years ago was 2011. That just doesn’t seem like ancient history in anyway. I have shoes that are older than that. 

Orwell Does have a character explain that it’s all about power, and it’s very chilling, but it’s chilling as a warning, not as some thing that’s really possible. Most people are not psychopath and actually are affected by creature comforts. Do you know how they say people vote their pocketbook. A society like Gilead where people don’t have luxuries they don’t have anything enjoyable they don’t really have much to live for it’s just not one that’s going to continue very long. It’s forcing people to go to Black market sort of things to have any fun.

So it’s actually sort of hard for me to believe in people like Mrs. Keys sold into marriage at such a young age, because her parents totally would remember life before. Or the girl Eden who was so excepting of all the philosophy and raised into it as it were. When at that time even she would have lived the first part of her life before Gilead.

In these dystopian story as I find them often more interested in what life is like in the people who are the rulers, to see whether it’s plausible. I always wanted to know more about what life was like for the people in the capital, and I definitely want to know more about what’s happening to Serena and Fred in Canada, maybe because they at least talk a little bit about those before times. I so hope the show goes there soon

 

 

 

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Is anyone keeping tabs on how many people died because of/for June? Because I am convinced that the writers have a white board with little marks. One side the 52 (?) children June "saved". On the other side the ones who died after following and listening to June's plans. I am trying to found out how many more goring stuff we have to see every time she has an idea. 

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Its 87 children with Nicole added in, and 9 Marthas.

So, there's the four Handmaids shot or train hammered. The two Marthas executed to make June talk. I'd count the second OfGlen's descent into suicide bombing although I can't pin the actual bombing victims on June. I'd also count OfMatthew.

I actually don't know that I'd count the Jezebel residents in Boston in that a) they cleaned up that body like cleaning up dead commanders was a big part of the job and b) they were going to be in the shit whether they helped June or not. I generously also don't count the Pennsylvanian Jezebel's because *knowing poisoning people because June showed you how* is something you kinda have to own - if June tells someone to go blow their brains out and they do it, they still are making the choice.

I would count Hannah's Martha being executed as June's fault. I'd also count the black guy with the wife and kid that hid her because she insisted when she was escaping with Nick back in season one. I'd also count anyone who died on the Keyes farm. 

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Well the commanders have luxuries, nice homes, cars, suits.

And the Jezebel clubs have top shelf booze, any kind of drugs and young women there to serve them.

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11 hours ago, lucindabelle said:

So glad that people are bringing up that Gilead is not fun. It is a real problem with books and stories about totalitarian societyies because I often wonder what’s in this for anybody? It’s a problem that Gilead is really rather a new society, it ha to be because June’s daughter is still so young, yet there are people who seem to be so completely indoctrinated into let’s face it a society that it’s barely 10 years old. I mean every single adult in that society everyone has a clear memory of what life was like before. It is not really possible.

In the earlier seasons, I had a real problem with the way the characters would each act like they were the only ones who remembered what the world was like before, and everyone else had somehow grown up in Gilead. At points, it was even hard to remember, as a viewer, that this all happened pretty recently.

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8 hours ago, SourK said:

In the earlier seasons, I had a real problem with the way the characters would each act like they were the only ones who remembered what the world was like before, and everyone else had somehow grown up in Gilead. At points, it was even hard to remember, as a viewer, that this all happened pretty recently.

That's because they were playing closer to the book then - you were forbidden from talking about the past, it didn't exist.  And you had no idea who would report you if you did, everybody could be a spy.  So it wasn't mentioned.  That is why Emily talking about the former ice cream shop in her early scenes with June was so jarring and shocking. 

Can I ask a question?  Why do people like the Bradley Whitford character?  I can't stand him.  Even his alleged remorse seems doused in greed and selfishness.

Edited by BrindaWalsh
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19 minutes ago, BrindaWalsh said:

That's because they were playing closer to the book then - you were forbidden from talking about the past, it didn't exist.  And you had no idea who would report you if you did, everybody could be a spy.  So it wasn't mentioned.  That is why Emily talking about the former ice cream shop in her early scenes with June was so jarring and shocking. 

Can I ask a question?  Why do people like the Bradley Whitford character?  I can't stand him.  Even his alleged remorse seems doused in greed and selfishness.

Lawrence doesn't strike me as remorseful as much as he seems to be really frustrated that they don't seem to be implementing his plans right. I get the impression that he feels like he's surrounded by idiots and this would all be going swimmingly if they would just do exactly what he says. But they don't, and that's why they're in such a mess. I like BW and Lawrence myself but as the show has gone on it's begun to wear thin.

Lawrence has said things to people enough times now that people ought to see through that thin layer snarky charm and know that he really has the same ideas as the other commanders. His smart plans got implemented badly by stupid people, so now he has to backtrack, and his mistake is costing millions of lives. But saying "yuppers" at a meeting or "you betcha" at a prayer breakfast will totally distract everyone from the stacks of bodies.

I think people like BW because he used to be on The West Wing as a witty, likable character and that's carrying over into this character now. They've given him a few snarky lines that no one else on this show ever would have said, but Josh Lyman totally would have. So that likability has carried over into Lawrence.

He's been in other shows since TWW went off the air, including another Sorkin show. I just haven't seen them because I'm picky about what I watch, so it's been a while since I've seen him in anything. So there's a nostalgia thing going for the actor and I don't know if he always does this.

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12 hours ago, BrindaWalsh said:

That's because they were playing closer to the book then - you were forbidden from talking about the past, it didn't exist.  And you had no idea who would report you if you did, everybody could be a spy.  So it wasn't mentioned.  That is why Emily talking about the former ice cream shop in her early scenes with June was so jarring and shocking. 

Can I ask a question?  Why do people like the Bradley Whitford character?  I can't stand him.  Even his alleged remorse seems doused in greed and selfishness.

If some viewers find the character likeable, that is a bit odd. He's a nasty piece of work; who loves having his intellect recognized, and living the high life, and is willing to give his talents to a monstrous regime with a vile, obviously stupid, ideology, as long as it results in him havng his ass kissed, as he drinks the best hooch in a great house. His only shred of decency was his love for his wife, and it was her influence on him which provided a check on his worst impulses, and led him to some ethically positive behavior. It'll be interesting to see where the character goes, the longer he lives as a widower. Will there be some part of him that tries to honor his wife's memory, or will he succumb wholly to his decadent cynicism?

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18 hours ago, BrindaWalsh said:

That's because they were playing closer to the book then - you were forbidden from talking about the past, it didn't exist.  And you had no idea who would report you if you did, everybody could be a spy.  So it wasn't mentioned.  That is why Emily talking about the former ice cream shop in her early scenes with June was so jarring and shocking. 

Can I ask a question?  Why do people like the Bradley Whitford character?  I can't stand him.  Even his alleged remorse seems doused in greed and selfishness.

I like the Lawrence character in the same way I like Aunt Lydia- their particular brands of crazy make for good television, but I wouldn't want to hang out with them.

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On 5/12/2021 at 7:21 AM, mamadrama said:

There was no middle ground for me in this episode-I was either very bored  or very interested.

They're continuing to choose cinematography over substance or sense. For instance, June walking through a frontline in the middle of the road LOOKED good but was stupid. 

I did greatly enjoy the Mayday convo they had in the extras, though. 

And stayed in the middle of the road even when the planes appeared. That had me rolling my eyes, but it's a very common, tedious, tired trope that when anyone is being chased by helicopter, car, monster, or anything they cannot outrun, they must always run in a straight line in the open right down the center of any road.

Other than that, I rather enjoyed this episode, although - unpopular opinion - Moira appearing like some Captain Marvel had me all, "Oh, really?"

Edited by AngelaHunter
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1 hour ago, AngelaHunter said:

And stayed in the middle of the road even when the planes appeared. That had me rolling my eyes, but it's a very common, tedious, tired trope that when anyone is being chased by helicopter, car, monster, or anything they cannot outrun, they must always run in a straight line in the open right down the center of any road.

Other than that, I rather enjoyed this episode, although - unpopular opinion - Moira appearing like some Captain Marvel had me all, "Oh, really?"

For me, it's probably the show's most prominent weakness; the writers and directors just aren't good at frenetic action.  Obviously, not even close to a deal-killer for me, but there are times I've wished for a director who had better chops in this area.

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3 hours ago, mamadrama said:

I like the Lawrence character in the same way I like Aunt Lydia- their particular brands of crazy make for good television, but I wouldn't want to hang out with them.

This. I like Lawrence in the sense that he's interesting to watch, the actor is dryly witty and does the role well, and on a show where the main male character in Gilead is usually bland yet evil Fred, it was nice to have a character who has motivations beyond "I like being king of the castle". He's the one character who seems to regret destroying the prior world and I think the show needed someone on the male side in Gilead, on board with Gilead, but having regrets. 

That said, oh hell no I would not want to socialize with someone like Lawrence in real life. He's a petty minded bully - when he's in power he's smirking with glee as he delights in rubbing it in June's face that she has to pretend to not know how to read as he demands she, in front of other commanders, find a particular book. That's asshole. He's a coward too - at last check, if it means he lives longer, he'd pretty much do anything. 

3 hours ago, AngelaHunter said:

And stayed in the middle of the road even when the planes appeared. That had me rolling my eyes, but it's a very common, tedious, tired trope that when anyone is being chased by helicopter, car, monster, or anything they cannot outrun, they must always run in a straight line in the open right down the center of any road.

Agree but I tend to forgive it because I know its a bit of a trope.  As much as I liked, in earlier seasons, the perfectly choreographed Handmaids walking and circling in time to various appropriate modern songs, there's also a point where I'm all "isn't this sort of thing likely to attract attention???" But its a tv show. 

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7 minutes ago, EllaWycliffe said:

But its a tv show. 

I'm aware it's a TV show, but do they always have to follow the same, age-old, tired formula - the bad guy gives a long, gloating speech before killing the good guy (just long enough for the good guy or his friends to outsmart bad guy), no one ever says "Good bye" before hanging up the phone, fish tanks are only there to be smashed, people in dire peril linger and give monolgues before running away, etc.

I guess I keep expecting someone might try to break the mold in this unique story, but they never do. It's just so predictable as this - running down the middle of the street to present a perfect target - is. It makes the characters look dumb.

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15 minutes ago, AngelaHunter said:

 (just long enough for the good guy or his friends to outsmart bad guy), no one ever says "Good bye" before hanging up the phone, fish tanks are only there to be smashed, people in dire peril linger and give monolgues before running away, etc.

 

omg. I thought I was the only person who noticed that. 

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3 minutes ago, AngelaHunter said:

I'm aware it's a TV show, but do they always have to follow the same, age-old, tired formula - the bad guy gives a long, gloating speech before killing the good guy (just long enough for the good guy or his friends to outsmart bad guy), no one ever says "Good bye" before hanging up the phone, fish tanks are only there to be smashed, people in dire peril linger and give monolgues before running away, etc.

I guess I keep expecting someone might try to break the mold in this unique story, but they never do. It's just so predictable as this - running down the middle of the street to present a perfect target - is. It makes the characters look dumb.

Part of the issue for me is that I have seen so many other dumb choices and implausible things happen on this show in particular that I'm just waiting for the next dumb thing. OK, new scene, let's watch for another one, and invariably it happens. Now this holds true for anything I watch, but when I am entertained, or the story intrigues me, or I'm in some way invested in what's happening, these things don't bother me as much. The problem with this show is that there are too many dramatic, silent pauses, too many dumb choices, and too many implausible situations for me not to question what's going on.

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8 minutes ago, LordOfLotion said:

Part of the issue for me is that I have seen so many other dumb choices and implausible things happen on this show in particular that I'm just waiting for the next dumb thing.

Let's watch June get captured over and over, get tortured, beaten, and now bombed or strafed (or maybe bombed AND strafed? I was unclear on that) but it's okay because we know she will rise from this bombing totally intact with just a few specks of debris and dirt on her clothes, just like the Coyote after his ACME bomb blows up in his face.

I was so taken with this show in the earlier seasons. Now, not so much but it seems this is always the way when a show goes on for too long and the storyline must devolve into standardized cliche. What a shame. Oh, and the continued abuse of Janine is pretty disgusting.

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I know a show has a problem when I start referring to it as The Perils of Pauline.

This is especially true when I have come to really hate the lead so much that I keep hoping she will actually die but no, she never does. She never will. 

It's also bad when I am viewing an intense scene and keep thinking that it's real purpose is for the Emmy reel.  The worst problem with the show is that they are so impressed with themselves. I saw Bradley Whitford in an interview absolutely gushing about this show and Moss specifically and he said Moss is giving the 'performance of her generation'. I mean it was ridiculous the level of adoration for Moss in this vehicle that he was going on about. 

I watch in spite of Moss and her weird faces and extreme closeups of her eyeballs and nose hairs not because of her. I like the universe and the other characters. June can get blown up any time and I'd be fine with that.

ETA: I just realized that I said I wished the lead would die but that's not what I meant to say. I wished that June would die, not Moss. I don't like her in this show but I wish her a long and happy life.  😬

Edited by Andyourlittledog2
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On 5/14/2021 at 4:05 AM, toomuchtv said:

What does happen when you retire from aunt-dom? Or even the econo class? Do they live a life of leisure? Or just work til they drop?

For Aunts, I would say that there might be provision for a sort of honourable semi-retirement in the future, for those who stay in the good books of the Commanders and High Commanders.  If nothing else, they'd be spies in Ardua Hall, ready to report on subversive behaviour on the part of others Aunts. Those who aren't well regarded could end up reassigned to the Colonies, where their expected lifespan may not be that much longer than that of the women they are there to guard.

For the Econoclass, I'm guessing that retirement depends wholly on having children, preferably sons.

An Economan could hope that, if he has a son, he and his wife will potentially have the option of being supported by him in his old age. The daughters of Econocouples aren't allowed to work, and would probably end up caring for their husband's parents rather than their own. I doubt that there is a retirement age. A man who is physically capable of working is probably expected to keep going.

Econowives who outlive their husbands are probably in a very precarious position. In the novel, June notes that it's rare to see widows. Given that women aren't allowed to work, the options for an Econowife who loses her husband are probably very limited. If she is younger, remarriage may be an option, especially if she has a history of fertility. Becoming a Martha may be a possibility. If she's lucky, she has an adult child who can take her in. Otherwise, it may be off to the Colonies as an Unwoman.

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I think June was walking down the middle of the street because she wanted to be seen by the other, more militant group.  Presumably they had places to hide and supplies, so it would be difficult to "find" them, if she was ducking in and out of doorways or buildings.

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I too have always wondered if most Marthas weren't former Econowives with grown kids and no husband around anymore (killed in war, older and died, etc)

Edited by JasonCC
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1 hour ago, JasonCC said:

I too have always wondered if most Marthas weren't former Econowives with grown kids and no husband around anymore (killed in war, older and died, etc)

One of the Marthas (I think it was Cora, but I can't swear to it) said that Marthas were also sinners under Gilead law.

It takes very little to be branded a sinner; getting sterilized, being an unmarried mother too old to be made a Handmaid, cohabiting without being married, being divorced or married to a divorced man, being in a line of work deemed sinful, being a member of the wrong religion or no religion, etc.

Gilead is less than a decade old at this point, so I'd lay odds that the Commanders haven't done much future planning in terms of what is to happen to Econowives who lose their husbands, given that most of them will not have children, and they're not allowed to work.

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On 5/17/2021 at 9:29 PM, Andyourlittledog2 said:

I know a show has a problem when I start referring to it as The Perils of Pauline.

Yes. I'm kind of hoping we'll see her tied to some railroad tracks while a Snidely Whiplash Commander twirls his moustache and gloats.

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Why would ANYONE, let alone the commander friends of Lawrence, ever believed that June couldn’t read when the whole regime is less than 10 years old? I get nothing being allowed to openly reminisce, but that’s just stupid, and practically BEGGING for them to realize how ridiculous it all is.

 

I liked Lawrence due to his wife and his art. Now, not. 

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1 minute ago, lucindabelle said:

Why would ANYONE, let alone the commander friends of Lawrence, ever believed that June couldn’t read when the whole regime is less than 10 years old? I get nothing being allowed to openly reminisce, but that’s just stupid, and practically BEGGING for them to realize how ridiculous it all is.

 

I liked Lawrence due to his wife and his art. Now, not. 

They all knew she, an editor, could read.  Lawrence did that to humiliate June in front of the others.  He trusted her to be smart enough to hide that, as most of the women in Gilead are forced to do.  

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Ok so if they know why pretend??? I get saying trhe women MAY not read. It seems ridiculous for them all to mutually pretend she CAN not read. 

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8 minutes ago, lucindabelle said:

Ok so if they know why pretend??? I get saying trhe women MAY not read. It seems ridiculous for them all to mutually pretend she CAN not read. 

Just another way to get their rocks off, making women act stupid, and dance for them.

If she'd found the book without him describing it?  She's probably lose a hand.

Power tripping.

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Oh my fucking god, I love that Martha. Yes! Stay away from June, she's nothing but trouble and eventually will get you killed, while she trods on, like the angel of death she is.

Janine better not be dead btw.

So what was up with ceasefire and the good will it was supposed to generate? Because bombing the shit out of the city before the ceasefire has ended will surely do the opposite. Is lawrence now actively sabotaging Gilead? Was that his resolve when he said he would make the country great again?

Of course June and Moira just happen to come across each other in Chicago, after a bombinb. Whatever. This contrivance doesn't even rank in the top 100 of stupid shit I've seen on this show. So sure.

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On 5/19/2021 at 11:44 PM, Umbelina said:

Just another way to get their rocks off, making women act stupid, and dance for them.

If she'd found the book without him describing it?  She's probably lose a hand.

Power tripping.

I get that but it also seems a dangerous descent into cognitive dissonance. Seriously, bad practice to constantly remind people gilead isn’t a forever thing, and they couldn’t not know it. (It’s like trying NOT to read a word in your native language in front of you. I can look at russian letters. I can’t look at Latin ones. They just become words.)

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On 5/20/2021 at 4:22 AM, lucindabelle said:

Why would ANYONE, let alone the commander friends of Lawrence, ever believed that June couldn’t read when the whole regime is less than 10 years old? I get nothing being allowed to openly reminisce, but that’s just stupid, and practically BEGGING for them to realize how ridiculous it all is.

They don't believe it, but they probably get a thrill out of seeing a woman pretend that she can't read because it is a sign of their power over her.

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I liked this episode for the glimpses into how the aunts live (their common room had a very collegiate feel) and also because we got to watch Lawrence scheming and making his speeches to the other commanders. I feel like at this point Lawrence is keen to get something of his old status back to save his own life but it will be curious to see what he does with it if and when he gets it.

I also thought it was cool and important to show members of Mayday being angry with June. Her "kill Commanders/enemies and let the chips fall where they may" strategy for rebelling mainly seems to cost other people rather than her so it is totally believable that would piss at least some of her fellow rebels off.

I wish Janine could have taken a third way or something. Steven was skeezy but given his "survival first" strategy Janine might have been better staying with those rebels rather than following June again.

 

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