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Umbelina

Spoilers For the Hulu Show

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32 minutes ago, Shaynaa said:

Trailer is out and it has the creepiest song cover ever.

Isn't it eerie how fitting the song lyrics are though? I "discovered" the original - For What It's Worth by Buffalo Springfield - on the Forrest Gump soundtrack and it's been one of my favorites ever since.

ETA: It looks like Janine is wearing colonies garb. June is wearing the kind of gag that Emily had to wear during her "trial" last season. There's a shot of Luke with Hannah, which could be a flashback, but she looks bigger than in last season's flashbacks - maybe Mayday rescued her in exchange for June agreeing to go back and spy on the Waterfords?

Edited by chocolatine
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4 hours ago, ClaireS said:

No colonies in ep 1 

Flashbacks and HOPE

No Emily in ep 1 

Yay for Hope. Boo for no Emily.

I was afraid it’ll be all gloom all the time. I’m glad that we’ll see a glimpse of hope even if it’s out of reach for now 

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On 1/25/2018 at 12:02 PM, marinw said:

The Great Cherry Jones will be playing June's Mom:

https://io9.gizmodo.com/offreds-mom-is-heading-to-the-handmaids-tale-1822407757

Yessss love Cherry Jones.

Other great news: Bradley Whitford is also going to be in Season 2! He's going to be playing Commander Joseph Lawrence, "the mastermind behind Gilead's economy." Here for it.

Some old news that I don't think has been posted yet in this thread: Clea Duvall will be playing Emily's wife. The article references the couple's attempt to escape to Canada as Gilead takes control of the country, so I'm guessing there will be an Emily-centric flashback episode. 

Edited by Eyes High
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Alexis Bledel on Emily in S2. The spoilers:

1. Emily goes to the Colonies.

2. Marisa Tomei costars in Emily's episode.

3. Emily's episode is the second episode.

One of the promos also showed Janine in the Colonies. 

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More spoilers from PaleyFest (omitting what's already been posted in this thread):

1. Nick will still be working for the Commander but will be making hard choices because of the feelings he has for June.

2. Amanda Brugel (Rita) is very surprised by where Season 2 takes Rita.

3. Someone will escape from Gilead this season.

4. Hannah will appear in different years in June's flashbacks (played by different actors).

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8 hours ago, Eyes High said:

More spoilers from PaleyFest (omitting what's already been posted in this thread):

1. Nick will still be working for the Commander but will be making hard choices because of the feelings he has for June.

2. Amanda Brugel (Rita) is very surprised by where Season 2 takes Rita.

3. Someone will escape from Gilead this season.

4. Hannah will appear in different years in June's flashbacks (played by different actors).

Flashback Hannah can only be younger than she was when they attempted to escape.

 

Some more spoilers; From Bustle

Emily is sent to another commander played by Bradley Whitford. I am having a slight crises with these upcoming scenes. I HAVE to separate GG and WW from THT. Rory being abused by Josh Lyman is the things nightmares are made off

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4 minutes ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

Emily is sent to another commander played by Bradley Whitford.

Even after she tried to make a break for it in the stolen Mercedes and mowed down a guard? The Gilead powers that be must be desperate for babies.

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Emily must earn her strike three in interesting fashion, since we know she gets shipped off to the Colonies. Maybe she murders Bradley Whitford’s character.

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4 minutes ago, Eyes High said:

Emily must earn her strike three in interesting fashion, since we know she gets shipped off to the Colonies. Maybe she murders Bradley Whitford’s character.

Maybe it's a flashback and Bradley Whitford was her first "posting" after she got caught at the airport. I just can't imagine Gilead giving her another chance after such a public display of disobedience, not without some serious physical disfigurement anyway. Remember the scene at the party for the Mexican ambassador when SJ asked Aunt Lydia to remove the "damaged" handmaids? There were several without an eye, like Janine, some with acid/burn scars, and at least one without a hand. And I bet none of them did anything as egregious - by Gilead standards - as stealing and driving a car. Hell, even Putnam lost a hand for his extracurricular activities with Janine, and he's a commander.

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The article specifically states that she makes it out of the Colonies.  Maybe the Colonies is not a permanent "home." Maybe they are "sentenced" there and get out for good behavior. Imagine the hell it must be for life out of "prison" means being back to living as an incubator 

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1 minute ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

The article specifically states that she makes it out of the Colonies.  Maybe the Colonies is not a permanent "home." Maybe they are "sentenced" there and get out for good behavior. Imagine the hell it must be for life out of "prison" means being back to living as an incubator 

Yeah, but it makes no sense to make someone an incubator after they've been exposed to so much toxic waste. The way colonies were described by Moira in the first season - "your skin peels off in sheets and then you die" - nobody survives there for very long. And toxic pollution was apparently the cause for the fertility crisis in the first place, so I can't wrap my mind around someone coming back from the colonies and trying to make babies. The only way I see that happening is if Mayday manages to spring a large number of handmaids at once, then the commanders would be desperate enough to bring disgraced handmaids back from the colonies.

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Just now, chocolatine said:

Yeah, but it makes no sense to make someone an incubator after they've been exposed to so much toxic waste. The way colonies were described by Moira in the first season - "your skin peels off in sheets and then you die" - nobody survives there for very long. And toxic pollution was apparently the cause for the fertility crisis in the first place, so I can't wrap my mind around someone coming back from the colonies and trying to make babies. The only way I see that happening is if Mayday manages to spring a large number of handmaids at once, then the commanders would be desperate enough to bring disgraced handmaids back from the colonies.

That is so true. If she goes to Bradley's character after her stink at the colonies, I expect him to be a monster of a commander. They'll give her to someone who'll keep her in check. If it was before, then he'll be Commander Steven. 

I read that there are variations of the colonies. It is not just one place, there are many areas that make up the colonies. I assume there are levels of toxicity in each colony. If procreation is paramount, and it is because that is what Gillead is built, they could send fertile women to the less toxic colonies and retract them after a time.

It also seems Emily and Janine run into each other at the colonies. She is also still a viable candidate for handmaid duties. 

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16 hours ago, chocolatine said:

Yeah, but it makes no sense to make someone an incubator after they've been exposed to so much toxic waste. The way colonies were described by Moira in the first season - "your skin peels off in sheets and then you die" - nobody survives there for very long. And toxic pollution was apparently the cause for the fertility crisis in the first place, so I can't wrap my mind around someone coming back from the colonies and trying to make babies. The only way I see that happening is if Mayday manages to spring a large number of handmaids at once, then the commanders would be desperate enough to bring disgraced handmaids back from the colonies.

Not all of the colonies are toxic waste though.  Some of them are farm land, etc.  I hope Emily runs into June's mom though, and she's still alive.  Although, this certainly looks like toxic waste!

handmaids-tale-season-2.jpg

Another article here:

https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2018/03/the-handmaids-tale-season-2-hulu-preview-elisabeth-moss-alexis-bledel?mbid=nl_HW_5aafe3b4af40c861bd503096&CNDID=29505557&spMailingID=13150277&spUserID=MTMzMTgyNjM3NTk0S0&spJobID=1361765842&spReportId=MTM2MTc2NTg0MgS2

This article is excellent, and has some surprising details.

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40 minutes ago, marinw said:

New trailer, Spoilers!

WOW! I had to watch that twice to absorb everything. The visuals are even more stunning than S1. That scene where it looks like a mass hanging of handmaids - I thought nothing could rival the scene of Emily having to watch her lover be hanged, but this has the potential to be even more moving.

Oh, and Waterford is of course blaming SJ for everything. Business as usual.

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Looks like Rita and Nick are colluding 

I have a strong suspicion that the commander is giving Nick a beating. Although, if his duplicity is discovered, whipping seems like the least sever punishment.

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I wonder if the funeral scenes with lots of handmaids and coffins is a follow up to the handmaids at the gallows scenes. There were 45 handmaids at the gallows and (I think) 31 coffins at the funeral. Though 1 coffin was outside the second circle so likely the first of 15 in a third circle that hadn't been completed. There were also 45 handmaids in funeral garb.

Edited by AllyB
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21 hours ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

Wow guys, this doesn't sound good.

These reviews, from critics who pretty much universally loved season one?  I'm stuck with "wow" as my main reaction here.

From Mashable's Jess Joho

Quote

At best, the violence in Season 2 reinforces what the violence in Season 1 already so effectively communicated. Only it does so with twice as much fanfare, and half as much impact. At worst, it reads like torture porn.

and
 

Quote

 

And now we return to the central issue with Handmaid's Tale Season 2: it cannot rely on Margaret Atwood anymore. And they haven't just lost one of the most skilled writers of our time. They lost the mind that thoroughly researched the oppression of women across all histories, cultures, and religions, then managed to distill those patterns into an extremely effective, self-contained novel.

Atwood wasn't the only woman Handmaid's Tale lost between Season 1 and 2, either. Executive producer and director Reed Morano's absence leaves behind a gaping hole. Overall, last year saw eight out of ten episodes being directed by women. This year, four out of the six episodes we watched were directed by a man.

 

I'm still reading the others, but I have a feeling the reaction of other critics will be similar.

 

ETA  EW liked it more, but I notice they mostly focus on the flashback scenes of June's activist mother, which did come directly from the book.

Slash Film's Hoai-Tran Bui (female) is also giving it mostly raves, focusing on the expanded world, and increased character development of people other than June. 

Quote

Buoyed by its razor-sharp focus on its female characters, The Handmaid’s Tale season 2 surpasses its first season. Though it does sometimes give in to the show’s penchant for political awkwardness and has prolonged, miserable scenes that could rival Game of Thrones‘ torture porn, it seems like the Hulu series is all the better for stepping out from the shadow of Atwood’s book.

USA Today's Kelly Lawler:

She seems to agree with Mashable's critic.

Quote

Expanding Handmaid's into a multi-season TV series from a single novel by Margaret Atwood was always going to be tricky, and to maintain the core of the series as it moves beyond the book's roadmap, its characters have to suffer. Still, there's only so much trauma audiences can take before it becomes too much. Handmaid's would do well with a lighter touch. 

 

Quote

 

The writers put the characters through even more harrowing torments. That certainly underlines the point that this dystopia is horrific, and provides shock and gore on par with Game of Thrones. But it gives the drama, still beautifully acted and shot, an exploitative vibe that it mostly avoided last year. 

Handmaid's was too capital-I important, and too intellectual, to be pulpy and cheap. But in the first six episodes made available for review, it verges on that territory, from an excruciatingly long sequence of dozens of people being led to a gallows to another (in the same episode) of a woman being handcuffed to a stove with an open flame. Fans often noted that the violence and anguish made the series difficult to watch, and the problem has only increased this time around. 

 

Edited by Umbelina
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@Umbelina, thank you for the digest! I kinda like that the reviews are mixed, it implies that the show isn't trying to appeal to everyone. Obviously, it'll be hard to live up to the standard set by first season, but I'm reserving judgement until I actually see the new episodes. It sucks though that Reed Morano is no longer involved, the episodes she directed were my favorites.

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Yeah, but to me, the positive reviews specifically didn't focus on the parts the other reviewers found disturbing in so many similar ways.

I also worry, as did one reviewer, about suddenly having all men and the helm, and the GoT similarities. 

I hope it's story, and not simply male perspective taking over, and the men in charge now trying to make the show more appealing to a male audience...but I do wonder about that.

Definitely read Mashable's.

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There is a review that mentioned being uncomfortable with the show seemingly redemption of Serena. If anything will get me to abandon this show, that would be it. Neither she nor all the women who facilitate and enforce the current situation should be redeemed. They are devoid of any goodness for them to come this far. 

I throw up in my mouth then I read posts about Aunt Lydia loving the handmaids in her own way. Like, WTF show are they watching?

I am also annoyed some reviewers who are complaining that the handmaids can't be hurt. One reviewer actually made this claim no matter they are put through, it doesn't matter because at the end you know they can't be hurt. I want to scream in their faces that cutting off someone clitories is hurting them. Repeatedly raping someone until they get pregnant is hurting them. Taking away their baby is hurting them. Sending them off to work on wastelands is hurting them. What the fuck is wrong with people that thing these things are not harmful? 

I am pleased that Alexis Bledel is getting rave reviews again. Annoyed that she is only 2/6 episodes thus far. 

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1 hour ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

I am also annoyed some reviewers who are complaining that the handmaids can't be hurt. One reviewer actually made this claim no matter they are put through, it doesn't matter because at the end you know they can't be hurt. I want to scream in their faces that cutting off someone clitories is hurting them. Repeatedly raping someone until they get pregnant is hurting them. Taking away their baby is hurting them. Sending them off to work on wastelands is hurting them. What the fuck is wrong with people that thing these things are not harmful? 

Apparently, not everyone thinks that what's being done to the Handmaids qualifies as rape. Last year my aunt was telling me that she just finished reading the book - she didn't grow up in the US, so she never read it in high school or college - and I told her that I'd been watching the show, and that the violence and rape was a lot more shocking to watch than to read about. She said, "what rape?" I said the ceremony, and she said "it's not rape because the Handmaids had another choice," i.e. death by colonies. So there are people, women, who don't think the Handmaids have it all that bad. 

Edited by chocolatine
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20 minutes ago, chocolatine said:

Apparently, not everyone thinks that what's being done to the Handmaids qualifies as rape. Last year my aunt was telling me that she just finished reading the book - she didn't grow up in the US, so she never read it in high school or college - and I told her that I'd been watching the show, and that the violence and rape was a lot more shocking to watch than to read about. She said, "what rape?" I said the ceremony, and she said "it's not rape because the Handmaids had another choice," i.e. death by colonies. So there are people, women, who don't think the Handmaids have it all that bad. 

It is a ridiculous argument to make, but no they don't have a choice of going to the colonies. That "choice" is made for them

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2 minutes ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

It is a ridiculous argument to make, but no they don't have a choice of going to the colonies. That "choice" is made for them

In the book, Offred does imply that she had a choice:

Quote

Nothing is going on here that I haven't signed up for. There wasn't a lot of choice but there was some, and this is what I chose.

But you're right that it's not really a "choice" if one of the options is certain death, and if the other option is survival under the condition that you have sex against your will, that's still rape. I think the reader is supposed to draw that conclusion, even though the book never outright says that it's rape.

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6 hours ago, Umbelina said:

I also worry, as did one reviewer, about suddenly having all men and the helm, and the GoT similarities. 

I hope it's story, and not simply male perspective taking over, and the men in charge now trying to make the show more appealing to a male audience...but I do wonder about that.

As do I.

I've watched too many series based on books with female protagonists written by female authors, which are then adapted by a male showrunner, who consciously or not tilts things towards a male perspective and even favors male characters over the female lead, not to worry about this shift. It is absolutely a thing that happens, even when there are female producers and writers involved, and the possibility has concerned me ever since it became clear that there were going to be changes behind the scenes for the second season.

From the Mashable review:

Quote

But Season 2's break from that limitation results in a story that is bigger, but more diluted and unfocused. This is no longer a handmaid's tale, and that's a loss. Because as Atwood's book argues, everything you need to know about Gilead is already embedded in a single, random, unremarkable handmaid's constricted experience of their world.

That 'diluted and unfocused' worries me as well. It's something I mentioned a bit in our discussions of the first season, as the show-original material began to emerge. There are certainly rewards to be had in opening up the world of the book, but this was always a risk, and just like last season, it doesn't sound as if they've succeeded in side-stepping it. 

 

4 hours ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

There is a review that mentioned being uncomfortable with the show seemingly redemption of Serena. If anything will get me to abandon this show, that would be it. Neither she nor all the women who facilitate and enforce the current situation should be redeemed. They are devoid of any goodness for them to come this far.

Yeah, I have not been a fan of the possibility of redeeming Serena Joy either. I view this as part of a larger trend in storytelling, where 'villain' has become something of a dirty word, and any that haven't been given some sort of sad background to make them 'understandable' are now considered cartoonish. She did what she did and she is what she is - so let her be that. We can still find her compelling and intriguing without being manipulated into feeling badly that her own personal crap led her to be an architect of oppression for countless members of her own sex. Funk that. 

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I'm sure Serena has other sides to her, yes, she made her own prison, intending that fate only to the other women, but I thought the scenes when she wasn't allowed in with the men were very, very good.  So I'll wait and see on that.  However, if they try to make her over into an almost heroine, as they did Cersie from GoT?  Yeah FUCK that.

BY the way, I now renew my complete and utter objection to this show leaving racism completely out.  Obviously, that didn't have to mean an all-white cast, as I said before, the world was already expanded last season, and it's expanding more now.  I felt, and still feel, that the racism in the book was as horrifying as the sexism, if not more so.  It was a huge mistake, and was really my only quibble with the show.

I now may have another quibble though.  True, we never knew what happened after Ofred was put in the van, but we DO know she recorded all of those tapes in a cabin somewhere up north.  It wasn't much of a stretch to think that Nick faked her arrest and got her out.  True, the delay doesn't mean she doesn't eventually escape anyway, but DAMN!  That scene they describe about what happens to her and the other women who rebelled sounds gruesome.

By the way @Deputy Deputy CoS, you should probably edit your post in the media thread to say "WARNING, MAJOR SPOILERS in these articles.  Some of them completely spell out huge stories.

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I am cautiously optimistic about S2. But I am also worried that without the novel as a guide, the series will veer off track or do ridiculous things, like try to turn June into a superhero. Or worse, Nick becomes a superhero and saves June. 

I am open to delving into Serena. But I'm not going to be happy if we start with the men's perspectives, sympathetic or not. Please, we have been doing that for centuries. 

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Damn.

I was going to (for once) try to stay away from spoilers for the rest of this season on this particular show.

I think I just accidentally read one here From Aunt Lydia
 

Quote

 

It’s easy to understand, then, why Aunt Lydia’s relationship with Elisabeth Moss’s Offred is so complex—especially this season, as Offred (real name: June) carries the baby she conceived with Nick in Season 1. As a rebellious handmaid, June simultaneously represents Aunt Lydia’s greatest hopes and deepest fears. And the fact that Aunt Lydia never predicted the rebellion June inspired is what vexes her most of all—which is why, once Aunt Lydia processes what happened, she becomes even tougher on her prodigal daughter. But even under all the upheaval and trauma, Dowd said, Aunt Lydia does see June as just that—a daughter.

“There’s really, I think, a maternal relationship there,” Dowd said. “I think she grows to love her.”

 

Doesn't that sound like Aunt Lydia and June get back together?  Which would mean June is caught.

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37 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

Damn.

I was going to (for once) try to stay away from spoilers for the rest of this season on this particular show.

I think I just accidentally read one here From Aunt Lydia
 

Doesn't that sound like Aunt Lydia and June get back together?  Which would mean June is caught.

I dunno. That could just apply to the first episode, because all of that kind of happens? Sometimes when I go back and read what actors say about what happens in the season, they usually are just talking about the first episode or two. Or just trying to be vague overall.  

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Torture porn is using violent and gore in a storyline that has no plot. This is not the case for Handmaids Tale IMO

There is rumors that 3rd episode is available tonight. Can anyone confirm?

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One of the articles I read said they are releasing 2  a week, but who knows how accurate that was.

Moira and June back together again was the main spoiler I was talking about up there.

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Is there any list available of the names of each episode for the season. RTE (the Irish national broadcaster) is showing S2 on Thursday nights. Which may not sound like a big deal but in Ireland a foetus has an equal right to life as the woman carrying it. Which has resulted in thousands of cases that wouldn't be out of place in Gilead, where women are denied cancer treatment, allowed go blind, have been put at risk and even died from sepsis because the heart of an unviable foetus is still beating. We're having a referendum on Friday May 25th to hopefully change it.

I'd love to have some sort of idea what kind of episode will be on the night before we vote. I know broadcast television doesn't have the same kind of cultural  impact that it did even 15 years ago, but we have strict laws both on equal time being given to both sides of a referendum debate and a day long moratorium on debate/advertising the day before polls open. So THT being broadcast the night before the referendum could be quite significant in getting this stupid, cruel amendment off our constitution. 

Edited by AllyB
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On 4/17/2018 at 9:35 PM, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

I throw up in my mouth then I read posts about Aunt Lydia loving the handmaids in her own way. Like, WTF show are they watching?

IKR. Maybe she feels empathy for them and throws them a bone like not chaining them to a pillar or not burning their hand off until they really fuck up. Maybe she errs towards the quick death of a stoning versus slow radiation poisoning in the colonies. And maybe she feels like these things bond her, a fake shepherd, to the flock that hates her. But that ain’t love. 

Forgive my captain obvious choir preaching, but she’s the pervert. Not the nice lesbian couple!

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12 hours ago, AllyB said:

Is there any list available of the names of each episode for the season. RTE (the Irish national broadcaster) is showing S2 on Thursday nights. Which may not sound like a big deal but in Ireland a foetus has an equal right to life as the woman carrying it. Which has resulted in thousands of cases that wouldn't be out of place in Gilead, where women are denied cancer treatment, allowed go blind, have been put at risk and even died from sepsis because the heart of an unviable foetus is still beating. We're having a referendum on Friday May 25th to hopefully change it.

I'd love to have some sort of idea what kind of episode will be on the night before we vote. I know broadcast television doesn't have the same kind of cultural  impact that it did even 15 years ago, but we have strict laws both on equal time being given to both sides of a referendum debate and a day long moratorium on debate/advertising the day before polls open. So THT being broadcast the night before the referendum could be quite significant in getting this stupid, cruel amendment off our constitution. 

I looked and couldn’t find them for you. 

 

Good luck on the vote. 

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13 hours ago, AllyB said:

Is there any list available of the names of each episode for the season. RTE (the Irish national broadcaster) is showing S2 on Thursday nights. Which may not sound like a big deal but in Ireland a foetus has an equal right to life as the woman carrying it. Which has resulted in thousands of cases that wouldn't be out of place in Gilead, where women are denied cancer treatment, allowed go blind, have been put at risk and even died from sepsis because the heart of an unviable foetus is still beating. We're having a referendum on Friday May 25th to hopefully change it.

I'd love to have some sort of idea what kind of episode will be on the night before we vote. I know broadcast television doesn't have the same kind of cultural  impact that it did even 15 years ago, but we have strict laws both on equal time being given to both sides of a referendum debate and a day long moratorium on debate/advertising the day before polls open. So THT being broadcast the night before the referendum could be quite significant in getting this stupid, cruel amendment off our constitution. 

 

I could have sworn that Hulu and/or IMDB had titles and descriptions of upcoming episodes, but I just went back to check, and there's nothing. Maybe someone at Hulu realized they were giving too much away.

Fingers crossed for the referendum! I just read a book a couple of months ago - The Break by Marian Keyes - depicting an Irish woman's ordeal to get her pregnant teenage daughter a secret abortion in England, and to make it look like a miscarriage so that the girl's Irish doctor wouldn't report both of them. I was shocked that Ireland still had this antiquated law, since the country has experienced so much socio-economic progress in the past couple of decades.

Edited by chocolatine
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