Perhaps you’ve heard by now about a little series on Hulu called The Handmaid’s Tale. The show, whose first season is being released episode-by-episode as of this writing and which has been renewed for a second season, is based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel set in a dystopian future where religious autocrats have taken over what used to be the United States; have stripped away human rights in general and women’s rights in particular; and have subjugated fertile women into a life in which they’re nothing more than, uh, baby-making machines for the privileged (and barren) upper class.
So far, The Handmaid’s Tale has been critically well received, and has certainly gained notice from those like… uh, [sheepishly raises hand] me who do not have a Hulu subscription (note to self: buy it on DVD if and when it comes out) for what have been described as powerful and engrossing acting, writing, and visuals. Of course, one other reason for that notice is how it seems to be an ominous warning. Even though Season 1 went into production well before You Know Who was elected You Know What, the show seems to serve as an advisory for what may lie ahead for society while You Know Who’s cronies desire to take away rights and make America in their own misguided image. It’s part of the reason one critic has labeled the show the most important of this spring.
With The Handmaid’s Tale having such a dark tone and provocative subject matter, one would think it would not be ripe for parody by a satirical outlet such as, say, Saturday Night Live. Well… one would be wrong.