Review Roundup: Critics Weigh In On THE HANDMAIDS TALE Season 3
Ahead of its June 5 premiere on Hulu, the critics have weighed in on the third season of the Emmy winning drama THE HANDMAIDS TALE.
Adapted from the classic novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale is the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society in what was formerly the United States. Facing environmental disasters and a plunging birthrate, Gilead is ruled by a twisted fundamentalism in its militarized 'return to traditional values'.
As one of the few remaining fertile women, Offred (Elisabeth Moss) is a Handmaid in the Commander's household, one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as a last desperate attempt to repopulate the world. In this terrifying society, Offred must navigate between Commanders, their cruel Wives, domestic Marthas, and her fellow Handmaids - where anyone could be a spy for Gilead - all with one goal: to survive and find the daughter that was taken from her.
Check out what the critics are saying here:
Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter: "Moss remains a marvel, but I'm beginning to wonder if the show is using her exposed nerves and barbed outrage as a crutch. There was a cleverness to the dialogue, especially in the first season, and Moss turned that cleverness into the escape valve laughs that the show required. Now the writers are content to just let June embellish cliches with a little swearing and call it a day, forcing Moss to get value out of limp lines like, "This is the Valley of Death and there's a f-ton of people to fear." The number of episodes and key moments that rely on the camera pushing into extreme close-ups of Moss and forcing her to sell either the harrowing circumstance or the rebellion of the scene is way too high."
Kelly Lawler, USA Today: "However, some of the plotting and characterization stumbles as Season 3 progresses, particularly when Serena Joy (Yvonne Strahovski) and Fred (Joseph Fiennes) get back into the mix. Although Strahovski and Fiennes are fine actors, the Waterfords are the least compelling characters in the series. Their story is joyless and dull, and Serena Joy's arc is muddied by a development that brings them back into June's circle near the end of the six episodes made available for review of the season's 13."
David Canfield, EW: "But stay June did, and now she's on a mission. "You have to fight fire with fire," Moss teases. "That's become [June's] journey in season 3. To fight against the people she has to fight, she has to become more like them." Adds Miller: "We're not doing a montage of June being radicalized - it's 13 episodes. To see someone go through this process of becoming ruthless was a real challenge. We didn't want to sensationalize it, or make it too morally easy, either.""
Ben Travers, Indie Wire: "As in past seasons, June is suspicious of everyone, including Commander Joseph Lawrence (Bradley Whitford), who helped Emily (Alexis Bledel) escape in the Season 2 finale. Lawrence emerges as a pivotal figure in Season 3. The founder of the Colonies also is instrumental to Gilead's robust economy, but his reasons for helping Emily and other "insurgents" remains a well-kept mystery, even through six episodes. It's a purposeful constraint: Whitford's fiery, entitled-yet-compassionate performance helps define him, but Lawrence's true self will emerge when it's needed by the story and no sooner."
Check out he trailer for season 3 here: