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Tara Ariano

S01.E04: Nolite Te Bastardes Carborundorum

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So I guess every episode is going to end with a song?

I wonder if OfGlen's story is done or we will see more of her? The escape from the Red center scenes were great although I was a bit dubious that just putting on an aunt's uniform would allow them to walk out without any kind of check.  Another question, did Gilead make the T free?  I didn't notice them making any attempt to pay.  They just walked right in.

I know there has been speculation over how much the public knew about handmaids and them being pretty ignorant makes sense.  Details getting out would only make more people run away.  June/Offred is an adulterer because her husband had been married before and Gilead doesn't recognize divorce.  I really think this color blind post-racial society stuff is a big mistake.  These people are so oppressive on calling just about anything a sin but there is no racism?  I don't believe it

I liked when Serena tried giving Fred good advice about how to hand the newspaper article and he pretty much told her to sit down and shut up. 

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12 minutes ago, Shaynaa said:

 

I liked when Serena tried giving Fred good advice about how to hand the newspaper article and he pretty much told her to sit down and shut up. 

Why, what was likable about it?

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2 minutes ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

Why, what was likable about it?

Sarcasm.  I liked seeing her being assertive and smart.  Of course she gets put in her place because this is Gilead and a woman can't actually have an independent thought in her head, even to her own husband.

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I am not sure how I feel about "Orphan Black"'s Donny being turned into a lecherous, rapist doctor on this show.

I knew I recognized the voice but since they kept him behind the sheet for most of the scene I didn't place him at first. And let me just say that was so creepy and disgusting the way he sounded so cheerful while he poked his greasy fingers into Offred without a care while she reacted in clear discomfort and pain but knew she was helpless to stop him.

There is literally no violation too invasive for a Handmaid in this place, she may as well be a sow on a farm. Her entire physical being belongs to whomever is in charge of her at any given moment.

I detest Serena Joy and "can't get it up" Fred, they're frauds at their best and unrepentant rapists at their worst. I will say though I had to chuckle the way they played it when Fred couldn't get an erection and the actor was pretending to try and stimulate himself while the two actresses looked like they'd rather be licking hot candle wax. It was a nice break from the unrelenting soul crushing subject matter.

The scene where Moira took her chance to escape, knowing she had to leave her friend behind, even as June gave her the okay, was heartbreaking. Those two actresses really killed it for me, their facial expressions of hope and hopelessness mirrored was incredible. They did take a few different turns from the book with the running away plot, but I think for the show it worked, especially for the ending scene.

Seeing the sisterhood of Handmaids all pitch in to bring the horribly beaten June treats from their own lunches, trying to cheer her up in some small way made me tear up.

It's no wonder to me why the Regime works so hard to keep the Handmaids under control and brainwashed to turn on each other whenever possible. They know these women were the outcasts that they labeled "whores", "sluts", "baby killers", "gender traitors", and in doing so they created a bond within this group.

This group of women from before who remember freedom, who remember justice and liberty, who remember what love truly is and what it does and doesn't stand for. The Regime has to try and break them down worst of all because they have a greater strength and willpower than most.

"Nolite te bastardes carborundorum, bitches", indeed.

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They set up an interesting contrast in the commander's behavior toward his wife vs. Offred. He shuts Serena Joy down entirely when she tries to talk politics, but he seems happy to engage Offred (at least a little) when she asks about his trip. Why? Because he wants her admiration? Because he feels sorry for her? Because he's sick of his wife?

They also seem to be slowly unraveling the fact that the powers that be in Gilead are afraid to actually kill handmaids. They'll take an eye, surgically mutilate them, torture them... but the handmaids have to live for the society to survive. There's a power there.

Spoiler

I suspect this will be confirmed when they eventually reach the reveal that Moira is also alive... Assuming they stay true to the book.

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I love that the Toronto Star got a shoutout and apparently still exists in Handmaid world. You know they'd be all over a refugee Aunt's story.

Offred manipulating the Commander was A+++. 

Edited by Eyes High
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"They set up an interesting contrast in the commander's behavior toward his wife vs. Offred. He shuts Serena Joy down entirely when she tries to talk politics, but he seems happy to engage Offred (at least a little) when she asks about his trip. Why? Because he wants her admiration? Because he feels sorry for her? Because he's sick of his wife?"

(Sorry, don't know how to quote properly.)

I never picked this up from the novel, but I think this episode floated an answer to the Scrabble mystery. As Offred says, he wants to connect. Of course, her participation in his evening charade was motivated self-preservation, but it seemed less directly to stay in his good graces, in general, and more to spark and fan his interest, so he'd be more attracted to her, so he'd get an erection at the Ceremony, so maybe she'd become pregnant, so she wouldn't suffer the fate of a twice-failed Handmaid.

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9 hours ago, AnswersWanted said:

 

I am not sure how I feel about "Orphan Black"'s Donny being turned into a lecherous, rapist doctor on this show.

 

Not to mention doofus-y Constable Jackson from Murdoch Mysteries. I actually couldn't place him at first, and now wish I hadn't. Though it does say a lot about the nuances of the show that I actually considered whether his offer to "help" did have at least some partial sympathetic motive. Then I remembered the world we're in and figured, "nope, he's just a gross-o using his position to manipulate vulnerable women into having sex with him." I guess I was a little surprised that they even still have doctors - it seems to be such an anti-science society (what with executing some doctors and banishing intellectuals) that it wouldn't seem amiss if they bypassed medicine altogether in favor of "God's will."

I think perhaps my favorite aspect of the show is watching how quickly and easily women will subjugate other women, the structures society puts it into place to drive women apart and to encourage women to ignore their own individual interests or the interests of their group in favor of some imagined societal good - the socialization of women to care for others above themselves, but writ large. How easily Serena Joy dehumanizes June, treats her worse than an animal, because to do otherwise would force her to recognize the terrible inhumanity of a society she helped create and to recognize how her own selfish drives inform her support of that socieyt.

The show overall remains heart-breaking, terrifying, all the things. I've not read the book, though I've always known I should - maybe now I finally will. I stayed up way late last night just to watch this episode, even though it makes the wait till next week that much longer.

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I thought it very interesting to hear about about life outside Gilead. We knew Canada was where people were fleeing to but the fact that Gilead are under sanctions because of their regime really does make me wonder about what's happening in the rest of the world.

I did wonder if part of the commander's coldness toward his wife was because he was attached to the last Offred and partly blamed Serena Joy for her suicide. 

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10 hours ago, AnswersWanted said:

I am not sure how I feel about "Orphan Black"'s Donny being turned into a lecherous, rapist doctor on this show.

 

The casting definitely reminded me of seeing Jesse Plemons playing Todd on  "Breaking Bad". 

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Levity. Another thing this series needs. Is the subject dark and complicated? Yes. But does every single scene have to be so over wrought, so important?

Heavy scene, heavy scene, heavy scene, then FUNKY MUSIC to finish.

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Did I miss the jarring music, this time? I heard piano music, and then rainfall.

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The more classical type music interspersed with the more pop like songs goes along with what someone said in the book thread about why they think they're doing the music that way. I'm being intentionally vague in case you haven't read the book.

Edited by Eureka
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I love Donny from Orphan Black too! Recognized his voice right away. I didn't see it as him pressuring her for sex as someone mentioned above. I saw it as trying to help her. I felt the same way in the book.

Edited by Eureka
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34 minutes ago, Eureka said:

I love Donny from Orphan Black too! Recognized his voice right away. I didn't see it as him pressuring her for sex as someone mentioned above. I saw it as trying to help her. I felt the same way in the book.

 

I might believe that the doctor, either in the book or as shown in this episode, as being someone with a big heart just trying to help if it wasn't clear that he was putting the handmaid at such great risk.

He is a doctor, if he wanted to help her get pregnant "the old fashioned way" and supposedly he has the time and opportunity to do so without being caught, then why not just insert semen without the need for intercourse? He has tools at his disposal, she's already lying on her back so leaving her in that position for a while wouldn't raise suspicion.

I have always seen this character as an opportunist, especially if he is also held to the same rules as all other men in Gilead, that sex is meant for one thing, to produce a baby and no other time should a woman and man "lie with one another".

  I just see him as a horny guy who can prey on these fearful, desperate, terrified women who literally could be risking a death sentence if they do not get pregnant and he gets to ride in on a proverbial white horse to rescue them from such a horrific fate.

Not to mention the way Offred thanks him after rejecting his offer made my skin crawl, as if it was part of her regret and also object fear that maybe rejecting him might also lead to her ending up punished or worse because, yet again, she's in the hands of a man who is playing a game that she cannot win, she would not be allowed to win.

All it would take was him twisting the story if they are discovered or caught, claiming she came onto him, begged him to get her pregnant in desperation and then what? To be put in such a position, in my book, is beyond cruel to the point of actual torture.

Edited by AnswersWanted
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21 hours ago, Shaynaa said:

I really think this color blind post-racial society stuff is a big mistake.  These people are so oppressive on calling just about anything a sin but there is no racism?  I don't believe it

This was especially striking to me during their escape. Moira dressed as an Aunt really stood out-every Aunt we've seen has been an older white woman. It just didn't make sense to me that a young black woman dressed like that wouldn't ping anyone's radar. It would have made a lot more sense for June to be the Aunt, but that would have messed up the end result.

14 hours ago, LaChavalina said:

They set up an interesting contrast in the commander's behavior toward his wife vs. Offred. He shuts Serena Joy down entirely when she tries to talk politics, but he seems happy to engage Offred (at least a little) when she asks about his trip. Why? Because he wants her admiration? Because he feels sorry for her? Because he's sick of his wife?

I think it's because he has complete and total power over her life, and so he finds her intelligence merely amusing rather than threatening. 

10 hours ago, stanleyk said:

Not to mention doofus-y Constable Jackson from Murdoch Mysteries. I actually couldn't place him at first, and now wish I hadn't. Though it does say a lot about the nuances of the show that I actually considered whether his offer to "help" did have at least some partial sympathetic motive. Then I remembered the world we're in and figured, "nope, he's just a gross-o using his position to manipulate vulnerable women into having sex with him."

I'm sure the doctor tells himself that he's acting out of kindness and goodwill. No doubt some of the handmaidens are willing to let him do it in the hopes it will increase their chance of pregnancy.

5 hours ago, WaltersHair said:

Is the subject dark and complicated? Yes. But does every single scene have to be so over wrought, so important?

Yes. 

Edited by stagmania
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13 minutes ago, AnswersWanted said:

 

I might believe that the doctor, either in the book or as shown in this episode, as being someone with a big heart just trying to help if it wasn't clear that he was putting the handmaid at such great risk.

He is a doctor, if he wanted to help her get pregnant "the old fashioned way" and supposedly he has the time and opportunity to do so without being caught, then why not just insert semen without the need for intercourse? He has tools at his disposal, she's already lying on her back so leaving her in that position for a while wouldn't raise suspicion.

I have always seen this character as an opportunist, especially if he is also held to the same rules as all other men in Gilead, that sex is meant for one thing, to produce a baby and no other time should a woman and man "lie with one another".

  I just see him as a horny guy who can prey on these fearful, desperate, terrified women who literally could be risking a death sentence if they do not get pregnant and he gets to ride in on a proverbial white horse to rescue them from such a horrific fate.

Not to mention the way Offred thanks him after rejecting his offer made my skin crawl, as if it was part of her regret and also object fear that maybe rejecting him might also lead to her ending up punished or worse because, yet again, she's in the hands of a man who is playing a game that she cannot win, she would not be allowed to win.

All it would take was him twisting the story if they are discovered or caught, claiming she came onto him, begged him to get her pregnant in desperation and then what? To be put in such a position, in my book, is beyond cruel to the point of actual torture.

I didn't even think of that, that he could have done artificial insemination. I see your point.

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56 minutes ago, Eureka said:

I didn't see it as him pressuring her for sex as someone mentioned above. I saw it as trying to help her. I felt the same way in the book. I saw it as trying to help her. I felt the same way in the book.

The way he was caressing her thigh (which was a crime under Gilead law) as he was telling her that her Commander was most likely sterile, but that she would be blamed and punished for it, read very predatory and exploitive to me. As @AnswersWanted said, if he was being purely altruistic he would have offered to turkey-baste her.

Edited by chocolatine
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9 minutes ago, Eureka said:

I didn't even think of that, that he could have done artificial insemination. I see your point.

 

I will be honest, I am not very trusting of people with penises in Gilead at this point heh. It's just hard for me to not see these men, especially those who deal directly with the handmaids, not having ulterior motives.

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I hate aborted escape attempts, especially as we knew it was unsuccessful by the fact that the person recalling it was not, in fact, free! NOT gagging the "aunt" or in some way silencing her was a mistake, but they were in a rush, so I get it.  I was shocked at how much the transit station looks like the one at Peachtree Center (or at least how it used to look; it's been a while), but I liked how disoriented June and Moira were. You can't just "run" if you don't yet have your bearings and know what's out there to run TO. I imagine that's why it was so difficult for slaves to escape in the South of the U.S. back when. They weren't FROM North America to begin with. That said, I would assume that the way to reclaim some anonymity would be to look as male as possible, even if it meant killing a couple to get their clothes. But that's not this Tale.

 

10 hours ago, stanleyk said:

I think perhaps my favorite aspect of the show is watching how quickly and easily women will subjugate other women, the structures society puts it into place to drive women apart and to encourage women to ignore their own individual interests or the interests of their group in favor of some imagined societal good - the socialization of women to care for others above themselves, but writ large. How easily Serena Joy dehumanizes June, treats her worse than an animal, because to do otherwise would force her to recognize the terrible inhumanity of a society she helped create and to recognize how her own selfish drives inform her support of that socieyt.

When I was in college we had to read an account of one of the religiously oppressive regimes that actually existed while Atwood was making this story up, and I recall being at a loss as to how it was in large part women who enforced the restrictive social constructs. As I've gotten older and traveled more it is almost always the case in my experience at least. Turns out Serena Joy is neither serene nor does she bring joy. That must sting.

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21 hours ago, Shaynaa said:

I really think this color blind post-racial society stuff is a big mistake.  These people are so oppressive on calling just about anything a sin but there is no racism?  I don't believe it

 
 

Yeah, it doesn't make much sense but the show wanted to be PC. Oh, well.

This ep was a bit meh and felt like an alternate pilot. The handmaid's ceremony training would have been more intense if the actual ceremony wasn't in a previous ep. I did like the escape sequence but the show's limited budget is getting noticeable.

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Fozzybear that is exactly the correct term for "the ceremony", war time rape. I agree the realization dawning on the maids of their horrific future was chilling. 

I loved Elisabeth Moss already but she is totally amazing in this production.

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I couldn't figure out exactly where the doctor was on the scale from 1 to super creepy. Like was he genuinely trying to help Offred when he offered to impregnate her? Or was he just trying to get laid? I didn't see him touching her leg so I must have been distracted. That definitely would have made it seem more obvious to me while I was watching. To be honest, I was a little wary of him from the beginning. Encouraging her to talk to him seemed too much like he was an Eye just trying to get information that could be used against her, so I didn't blame Offred at all for keeping her mouth shut.

Watching Offred apologize to Mrs. Waterford for not getting pregnant just broke my heart. So sorry that being raped by your husband didn't result in a baby and that you're being petty and punishing me by making me stay in my room.

I thought that Offred was really pushing her luck and being too bold with the commander when she asked him about Moira. I know he's been friendly, but point blank asking him what happened to her was really surprising to me. I was even more surprised when she then told him she needed to be let out of her room. I thought he would say that he couldn't interfere with his wife's orders but nope. And that just makes me think that the wife is going to hate her even more now. I don't know if it's the smartest choice, but in such a shitty situation I guess she might as well get what little bit of freedom she can while being held hostage.

9 hours ago, NorthstarATL said:

NOT gagging the "aunt" or in some way silencing her was a mistake, but they were in a rush, so I get it. 

They stuffed something in her mouth just before they left, but she just spit it out as soon as they were gone. I know they were in a rush, but a few extra seconds to make sure no one would hear her screaming would have been worth it! I was actually wondering throughout the scene why they hadn't gagged her (instead of telling her "not a sound") so I was just glad that they bothered with that minimal effort.

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8 hours ago, FozzyBear said:

I also cried, big ugly tears when all the handmaids brought June food they had smuggled in to make sure she ate. It was the most hopeful thing I've seen in months. All the women coming together to use their limited resources to protect one of their own...it killed me.

Oh, put me on that bawling train, too.  Kindness always gets to me.  

53 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I couldn't figure out exactly where the doctor was on the scale from 1 to super creepy. Like was he genuinely trying to help Offred when he offered to impregnate her? Or was he just trying to get laid? I didn't see him touching her leg so I must have been distracted. That definitely would have made it seem more obvious to me while I was watching. To be honest, I was a little wary of him from the beginning. Encouraging her to talk to him seemed too much like he was an Eye just trying to get information that could be used against her, so I didn't blame Offred at all for keeping her mouth shut.

 

I know the leg touch was a book thing, but I didn't see it here, either. Maybe I missed it, too.

I had a similar reaction to the doctor about not quite being able to figure him out.  What made him creepy to me was that when he came in, he seemed to be acting like the world hadn't changed, as if he expected that June would comfortably engage in small talk with him.  He acted as if he didn't realize she might feel she had to be wary.

I felt like he was trying to help her, but also getting something out of it himself.  Gross, but he saw it as a mutual favor.

God, this world.  In context of it, he's not so bad because he could have just raped her instead of asking for consent. So at least there was that.  And ewwww.

1 hour ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I thought that Offred was really pushing her luck and being too bold with the commander when she asked him about Moira.

She was asking the commander about the previous Offred, not Moira.  But I agree about pushing her luck.

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20 hours ago, stanleyk said:

I think perhaps my favorite aspect of the show is watching how quickly and easily women will subjugate other women, the structures society puts it into place to drive women apart and to encourage women to ignore their own individual interests or the interests of their group in favor of some imagined societal good - the socialization of women to care for others above themselves, but writ large. How easily Serena Joy dehumanizes June, treats her worse than an animal, because to do otherwise would force her to recognize the terrible inhumanity of a society she helped create and to recognize how her own selfish drives inform her support of that socieyt.

 

8 hours ago, FozzyBear said:

I actually found the scene to be very intense. It was watching them realize what was going to happen. All these women who just a few months ago had some control over their person and body were just told they were going to be raped over and over. And they knew, no matter what the Aunts said or how they tried to frame it, this is war time rape. To watch a room of women all realize that things are in fact as bad as their nightmares was very powerful. 

I also cried, big ugly tears when all the handmaids brought June food they had smuggled in to make sure she ate. It was the most hopeful thing I've seen in months. All the women coming together to use their limited resources to protect one of their own...it killed me.

All of this is so interesting. It's so interesting to see how Serena Joy is treating June and how the aunts treated June versus how the other handmaids are treating each other. The food broke my heart and then even the scratching in the wall is so helpful in so many ways. It lets June have a connection to the other, it gave her an in with the Commander, it gave her a rally cry. All of those things are such a kindness that a stranger bestowed on another stranger which I love.

I also agree that the "This is how you do a ceremony" thing was chilling and I think it was especially chilling since we've already seen a ceremony and we've see June's blank look and Serena's mildly uncomfortable look. It was so "Yeah, this is happening" and it was eye opening to go back in time to see the very first time that she realized what was going to happen. This wasn't always so chill - as the aunt said "It will all start to seem normal after a while" - this is terrifying war-time rape. 

The scene where Serena's ideas get shot down was also great - Oh Serena, I'm sorry, sucks to have your power taken away, doesn't it? Maybe you shouldn't have fought so hard for this new world. It reminds me of the "What's the Matter with Kansas" sorts of voters in the world who rally around a government and vote for leaders that will not protect their interests and then are shocked when that happens. Serena, in some way, fought for a patriarchal society where men are in charge and women are subservient and now seems kind of shocked that she's expected to play along. Did you think they just meant OTHER women, Serena?

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I kept thinking that they should have just killed the Aunt and hid the body to buy themselves more time, but it seems like they were hedging their bets in case they got caught so they wouldn't be facing worse punishment (as Moira tells the Aunt to remember that they could have been a lot more cruel). 

I loved the moment of handmaid solidarity when the others were sneaking her food.

Edited by Eyes High
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2 hours ago, Bad Example said:

I know the leg touch was a book thing, but I didn't see it here, either. Maybe I missed it, too.

I rewatched that scene, and his hand was definitely on her thigh (and that was after he'd done the pelvic exam, so there was no reason for him to be touching her at all at that point).

14 minutes ago, Eyes High said:

I kept thinking that they should have just killed the Aunt and hid the body to buy themselves more time, but it seems like they were hedging their bets in case they got caught so they wouldn't be facing worse punishment (as Moira tells the Aunt to remember that they could have been a lot more cruel). 

 They were absolutely hedging. They had no idea what was out there, since they'd been confined to the Red Center during "training", or even where exactly they were. They knew they would most likely be caught.

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That said, I would assume that the way to reclaim some anonymity would be to look as male as possible, even if it meant killing a couple to get their clothes.

I noticed, that when June and Moira were attempting their escape, and they passed the wall with all of the hanged men, guards were wheeling bodies past them, and one of them looked like a man with very long hair. It was very quick, and i didn't go back to rewatch, but my first thought was maybe it had been a woman caught trying to escape dressed as a man. 

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1 hour ago, Jodithgrace said:

I noticed, that when June and Moira were attempting their escape, and they passed the wall with all of the hanged men, guards were wheeling bodies past them, and one of them looked like a man with very long hair. It was very quick, and i didn't go back to rewatch, but my first thought was maybe it had been a woman caught trying to escape dressed as a man. 

I initially thought it may have been a Lesbian but that your idea makes sense.

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3 hours ago, chocolatine said:

I rewatched that scene, and his hand was definitely on her thigh (and that was after he'd done the pelvic exam, so there was no reason for him to be touching her at all at that point).

 They were absolutely hedging. They had no idea what was out there, since they'd been confined to the Red Center during "training", or even where exactly they were. They knew they would most likely be caught.

Did anyone else catch that right after they say "Where are the street signs?" while they are running, a street sign appears way back in the scene.  A modern Green one with white lettering.  Just a goof up, I'm sure, but part of me said, "well, turn around, there it is!"

My instinct would have been to take the doctor up on the deal.  In the show I believe she's on her 3rd tour, so if she doesn't get pregnant this time, it's off to the colonies to clean up nuclear waste, or if she's very lucky to pick cotton or fruit. 

There is book stuff about the doctor and about the colonies if anyone wants to ask more questions in the "ask a book reader" thread.

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I couldn't figure out exactly where the doctor was on the scale from 1 to super creepy. Like was he genuinely trying to help Offred when he offered to impregnate her? Or was he just trying to get laid? I didn't see him touching her leg so I must have been distracted. That definitely would have made it seem more obvious to me while I was watching. To be honest, I was a little wary of him from the beginning. Encouraging her to talk to him seemed too much like he was an Eye just trying to get information that could be used against her, so I didn't blame Offred at all for keeping her mouth shut.

Agreed, and I seem to recall feeling the same way in the book (thought it's been awhile) - I think that is what it makes it so terrifying! Is he a spy or a member of the resistance or just a sympathetic ear? Is he a rapist or has he learned that this is actually a life saving service he can provide - or both? Should she trust him or not, should she push down all her revulsion and horror and try to talk to him or take him off on his offer? The creepy ambiguity is part of what makes the whole scene so powerful, to me anyway.

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Just think--what if she had trusted him, got pregnant from him and then the Commander can't get it up that month. How do you explain that baby? 

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2 hours ago, EdnasEdibles said:

Just think--what if she had trusted him, got pregnant from him and then the Commander can't get it up that month. How do you explain that baby? 

I was thinking the same thing. 

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At first, I thought casting a younger man as Fred was a bad decision, but it's growing on me. I think it's even a little creepier coming from Fred just because he is younger. I'm in my mid-twenties and I think many of my male peers would be more progressive and wouldn't stand for a Gilead-type thing, but then again many would. As June said, he tries to make a connection, maybe so he can "get-it-up", maybe for other reasons. I thought him nonchalantly asking her to get the dictionary was a good moment. For him, it was nothing, but for her, it was a big deal. For someone who most likely loved books (having been in publishing, I believe?) and was clearly intelligent, and someone who was denied even the right to read and write, I loved to see her run her hands over the books, as if she were remembering the "before". 

I enjoyed this episode because it showed a lot of characters' motivations. Every decision the handmaids get to make is a huge decision when they have so little choice. As others have said, I especially enjoyed the handmaids giving June the food, which I think served as both a thanks and a big ol' f-you to the aunts. There can still be solidarity, even in the loneliest and most desperate of times.

As for the attempted escape, I think it helped June to think of her friend as having escape. I think that may have been why she was so jarred in Ep 1 when Janine said Moira was probably dead - not only was she thinking about her friend dead, but probably a lot of her hope as well.

I think I might've gone crazy and killed myself after two weeks in isolation. maybe she had the martha to bring her food, but I imagine Serena Joy would've punished her for any more conversation than what needed to be said. Maybe the isolation is what caused previously Offred to hang herself.

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Does everyone have spectacularly blue eyes in this show? Holy Moss-ness! 

I think creepy Dr. Donny has convinced himself that he's helping. And I wonder how many Donny clones are littering the next generation?

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I'm surprised they didn't have some kind of guard there, since it seems they do their best to keep men and women from being alone together. Serena made sure to put that privacy window up, between June and the driver, although he could have lowered it again. I'm also surprised the doctor would take that kind of risk, what with the bodies of men hanging off that wall, and the handmaids beating that guy to death. 

Edited by Anela
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7 minutes ago, nachomama said:

And I wonder how many Donny clones are littering the next generation?

I was thinking about that myself, especially since we know that women would be the one's declared infertile and it couldn't possibly be a man's fault. How many studs such as "Donny" are there? We know they do genetic testing - would they also do testing to find out which babies are related? What is the Gilead plan for when the handmaids' babies are grown and go get married? How are they going to prevent genetic incest (I specify genetic because the kids aren't raised together and probably wouldn't have a reference for their half-biological siblings)? So many questions.

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9 minutes ago, SpaghettiTuesdays said:

I was thinking about that myself, especially since we know that women would be the one's declared infertile and it couldn't possibly be a man's fault. How many studs such as "Donny" are there? We know they do genetic testing - would they also do testing to find out which babies are related? What is the Gilead plan for when the handmaids' babies are grown and go get married? How are they going to prevent genetic incest (I specify genetic because the kids aren't raised together and probably wouldn't have a reference for their half-biological siblings)? So many questions.

But if they're going by their Bible, incest isn't really a problem.  See Lot and his daughters, Noah and his sons.  Their porn God makes it all okay.

These aren't smart people, just ugly ones.

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3 minutes ago, boes said:

But if they're going by their Bible, incest isn't really a problem.  See Lot and his daughters, Noah and his sons.  Their porn God makes it all okay.

These aren't smart people, just ugly ones.

I guess it's true from a belief standpoint but not a really good idea from a sustainability point of view.

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Do they also think they'll "solve" this infertility problem in future generations? They're breeding "breeders" so if June is fertile her children will likely be so? 

Spoiler

I know In the book her future boyfriend is almost going to have the Donny role, if he fathered a child the colonel dude would get the credit and it's a legitimate plan (not creepy rape) to stay together  

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1 hour ago, SpaghettiTuesdays said:

What is the Gilead plan for when the handmaids' babies are grown and go get married? How are they going to prevent genetic incest (I specify genetic because the kids aren't raised together and probably wouldn't have a reference for their half-biological siblings)? So many questions.

The "good men" who run Gilead probably haven't thought that far ahead (or even admitted to themselves that they're mostly sterile and therefore stud services are needed in the first place).

1 hour ago, nachomama said:

Donny clones

OMG, worlds collide! Is it June 10th yet?

Edited by chocolatine
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3 hours ago, chocolatine said:

 

OMG, worlds collide! Is it June 10th yet?

No joke! Can't wait!

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The risk of the doctor having sex with Offred would be two fold one, she could say she was raped putting the doctor in danger but if she does scream rape then the Aunts would say it was her fault and would be punished too.  They both had something to loose but the importance of her getting pregnant would out weigh the shared risk, right? 

How would the Commander know if it was actually his child or not since the powers that be seemed to have dumbed down the science of fertility medicine.  Having a baby seemed to be a status thing and admitting to male sterility was practically illegal to speak about it would seem logical to pretend with the Ceremony and let the doctor do the heavy lifting, like a stud servicing a brood mare. 


 

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Anyone notice the pictures of the commanders and wives with their new babies that were hanging on the doctor's waiting room wall? There had been discussion here of how African Americans were banished in the book, but part of the system in this adaptation, and how racism obviously would still be an issue in this New World Order.  However there were interracial commander couples pictured (only African American wives, though) and I believe an African American baby was shown in a photo. 

I think the way to square this would be to realize that even oppressive regimes can make "exceptions" for a select few people who are minorities; those whom The Powers that Be view as acceptable, non-threatening or having earned their approval. For example, see "Carson, Dr. Ben."

Edited by A Boston Gal
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