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Old 06-05-2019, 02:11 PM
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The Handmaid's Tale: Season 3 (open spoilers)


Head's up; season 3 premieres today on Hulu.

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Old 06-06-2019, 07:40 AM
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Oh goody! I get to go first!?

To start off, thank you alphaboi867, for the heads up; I had no idea it was back.

The tone continues to stray from the first season, but of course it has to, as the whole story arc has changed.

I think I need to watch the last couple of eps from S2 to refresh my memory. There's the usual recap at the start and I had somehow forgotten about Aunt Lydia's fate. I also can't quite recall what the deal is with Bradley Whitford's character.

I'll wait to see if anyone else chimes in, but if anyone does,
SPOILER:
was Serena sent to an asylum or to the wall?
  #3  
Old 06-06-2019, 05:56 PM
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Serena went home to her mother. It's actually a little odd since her mother is a Widow living a very comfortable life apparently without on her own (unless Serena has an unseen brother).

Cmdr Lawerence is very hard to read, but I like that. So far I get the impression that his major problem with the regime is that the theocratic bullshit is skewing their priorities and making them waste resources (like making a neonatologist work domestic service). I was expecting Hulu to drop 3 episodes at one so there was a lot to take in.

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Old 06-07-2019, 01:52 AM
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My opinion: this show has gone from one of the best serial dramas on TV to one of the worst, in just two seasons (that has to be some kind of record.) The tight writing, gripping plots, sharp direction and editing, stark and dramatic lighting and composition, all of it, are gone - replaced by tedious, asinine contrivances that are either too boring or too confusing, all apparently shot using a camera with a dusty pillowcase draped over it.

There was one moment and one moment only, where a bit of the old HT poked through: the sequence where June/Offred in Martha disguise walks through the city street leading to the laundry area, where she is told that handmaids are not allowed (because of chemicals in the air, presumably risking their childbearing ability) and we see a brief glimpse of the industrial workers of Gilead. That's what I want to see on the show - world-building, immersion, a sense of Gilead being a real place inhabited by real people and not just an abstract notion of oppressive dystopia peopled by the same handful of characters in every scene. I want to see the laundry workers of Gilead, I want to see the janitors, I want to see the barracks where the soldiers live, I want to see the scientists who work on whatever scientific shit they need, I want to see the guys who design the propaganda banners that will be displayed on the street - and so on.

I know that there are primary protagonists and antagonists who need to be the focus of the story, but there is still room for the other stuff too. Or, rather, there WOULD be room, if the directors exercised a little bit of judicious editing for economy of scene and story. Not every scene with dialog needs to have three second pauses between the lines. Not every shot of characters doing something dramatic needs to be in slow motion. Many of the scenes in the first episode of this new season could have been half as short and equally effective. They're wasting precious minutes of the show by running down the clock with bloated filler.

I've also seen just about enough of Bradley Whitford's character, Lawrence. We get it, the guy is sarcastic and aloof. As it is, he's practically channeling Bill Murray as Steve Zissou in The Life Aquatic every time he finishes a sentence, like we've got to be hit over the head with the fact that he's a real quirky character. Enough! The Waterfords have also just about worn out their welcome, their overwrought personae are becoming one-dimensional and tedious.

Get it together, Hulu.
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Old 06-09-2019, 08:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lamoral View Post
My opinion: this show has gone from one of the best serial dramas on TV to one of the worst, in just two seasons (that has to be some kind of record.) The tight writing, gripping plots, sharp direction and editing, stark and dramatic lighting and composition, all of it, are gone - replaced by tedious, asinine contrivances that are either too boring or too confusing, all apparently shot using a camera with a dusty pillowcase draped over it.

There was one moment and one moment only, where a bit of the old HT poked through: the sequence where June/Offred in Martha disguise walks through the city street leading to the laundry area, where she is told that handmaids are not allowed (because of chemicals in the air, presumably risking their childbearing ability) and we see a brief glimpse of the industrial workers of Gilead. That's what I want to see on the show - world-building, immersion, a sense of Gilead being a real place inhabited by real people and not just an abstract notion of oppressive dystopia peopled by the same handful of characters in every scene. I want to see the laundry workers of Gilead, I want to see the janitors, I want to see the barracks where the soldiers live, I want to see the scientists who work on whatever scientific shit they need, I want to see the guys who design the propaganda banners that will be displayed on the street - and so on.

I know that there are primary protagonists and antagonists who need to be the focus of the story, but there is still room for the other stuff too. Or, rather, there WOULD be room, if the directors exercised a little bit of judicious editing for economy of scene and story. Not every scene with dialog needs to have three second pauses between the lines. Not every shot of characters doing something dramatic needs to be in slow motion. Many of the scenes in the first episode of this new season could have been half as short and equally effective. They're wasting precious minutes of the show by running down the clock with bloated filler.

I've also seen just about enough of Bradley Whitford's character, Lawrence. We get it, the guy is sarcastic and aloof. As it is, he's practically channeling Bill Murray as Steve Zissou in The Life Aquatic every time he finishes a sentence, like we've got to be hit over the head with the fact that he's a real quirky character. Enough! The Waterfords have also just about worn out their welcome, their overwrought personae are becoming one-dimensional and tedious.

Get it together, Hulu.
I tend to agree. This season has been very lackluster.
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Old 06-09-2019, 02:37 PM
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I've only watched the first episode and was very underwhelmed. Once they ran out of book the writers seem to have real trouble making a coherent story. Some great looking scenes but it doesn't really seem to make any sense.
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Old 06-10-2019, 04:47 PM
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Yeah, the worldbuilding leaves a lot to be desired. Also Kylie Jenner threw a Handmaid themed birthday party complete with signature cocktails like Under His Eye Tequila and Praised Be Vodka.
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Old 06-10-2019, 08:22 PM
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I'm still enjoying it. I'm invested now - I have to see it to fruition!
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Old 06-10-2019, 08:47 PM
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I like that her new digs are an Underground Railroad for Marthas, but I think it would have been better for if it had been revealed more gradually. Also, I was totally confused when that one Martha got shot. Seems like they crammed way too much stuff in that one episode (or perhaps I need stop multitasking while watching this show).

I did like how Serena's mother went from a fount of loving kindness to evil all-knowing bitch in a matter of seconds, though. I should have guessed that was coming, but I didn't.

Perhaps highly ranked widows get generous pensions. I imagine that women in her position might also earn some cash by doing work for the church and whatnot.
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:25 PM
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Aunts have many privileges, including driving the their own scooters. We saw a flash of the old Serena Joy, but there's only so much she can do behind the scenes and we know how suddenly her mood shifts. On the other hand she has a lot less left to loose now. And as cruel as the Handmaid system is she does have a point; events like this reception make everyone uncomfortable and don't really serve a point. It's bad enough that Handmaids have to silently watch as their stolen children are publicly paraded before them by other people they have to act like happy party guests (who stay in the kitchen & can't eat from the buffet) at the risk of brutal punishment if they step out of line. And it's not like Janine isn't already known for mental problems. What I'm really curious about is whether Aunt Lydia is going to suffer any kind of consequences for her actions. I mean I doubt beating Janine is the issue, but she did loose control in a room full of horrified Wives & Commanders and a baby (as opposed to having Janine dragged out of the room and punished later). Everything we've seen so far suggests she's the highest ranking Aunt in the district, but she clearly answers to someone. Either there's an unseen Commander overall in charge of the Red Center or maybe she answers directly to the District Council?
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:19 PM
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I'm having trouble suspending disbelief with this whole subplot of trying to get Fred and Serena back together. They are in a dystopian patriarchy where women are used as breeding stock and forbidden to read. You think a simple instruction to go back to your husband and do what he tells you would be dreadfully easy to enforce. Hell, we did that sort of thing in this country 30 or 40 years ago.

Also, the more openly aggressive June becomes, I don't understand how this society allows her to remain free. People are executed for trivial things, but she practices open defiance without consequence.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alphaboi867 View Post
Everything we've seen so far suggests she's the highest ranking Aunt in the district, but she clearly answers to someone. Either there's an unseen Commander overall in charge of the Red Center or maybe she answers directly to the District Council?
Those are interesting questions. But we won't get answers to them.

That's what's wrong with this show, or rather, what the show has become, as I still hold the first season in high regard. But it's changed. There's no more world-building. There's no more exploration of the interesting details of Gilead.

You may know of the concept in show-writing called "the bottle episode." Basically an episode with a greatly scaled-back scope, with a skeleton crew of a cast, confined to a small set, heavy on dialogue. It's a convenient contrivance for when the show's budget, or schedule, or both, are tight. "Fly" was one such episode on Breaking Bad. Well, every episode of The Handmaid's Tale is now essentially a bottle episode. After this season so far, I'm convinced of it.

Based on that, I expect every episode from here on out to essentially be summed up as "the same small handful of people, talking to each other, slowly, in a handful of different rooms." And it's a shame, because there's so much potential, but ever since they deviated from the book, they're out to lunch.
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Old 06-14-2019, 03:11 PM
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Well said. I'm half watching along with my wife and it seems to degenerated into long pregnant pauses interspersed with dramatic scenes with no apparent plot I can make sense of. Which is a real shame as season one was excellent.
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