A bleak world where women are sex slaves
AUSTRALIAN viewers are about to be drawn into a dark world where women are treated as possessions and those who are fertile are forced into sexual servitude.
When The Handmaid’s Tale became available to watch in the US, viewers took to social media to grapple with what they’d seen.
Aussie actress Yvonne Strahovski, who plays Serena Joy – the infertile wife of a powerful commander who is assigned handmaid Offred (Elisabeth Moss) to provide them with a child – admitted the role got under her skin.
“I did find it difficult actually to leave Serena Joy, to leave her in the studio when I walked away because she is so complex and I find her to be quite layered in her emotions and her duality, mainly because she’s the architect of her own cage,” she said.
“She’s in this world that she was part of making but now she’s oppressed by it as well and she’s lost a lot of power and her rights as a woman also...
“Trying to nut that out was quite the task.”
And what about the book’s infamous The Ceremony scene, in which the commander (Joseph Fiennes) essentially rapes Offred while Serena holds her on the bed?
“I thought The Ceremony would be a lot more challenging than it was,” Strahovski said.
“I’ve seen the pilot a bunch of times now and that scene still jars me, no matter how many time’s I’d watched it.
“It’s incredibly awkward to watch, but I promise you it wasn’t that awkward on the day.’’
Strahovski said she and her fellow actors on the show were able to lighten the mood on set and have a laugh, despite the difficulty of the scenes they were dealing with.
She also spent a lot of her downtime exploring Toronto, Canada, where the series was filmed, to take a break from thinking about work.