Alexis Bledel tells us the most fright­en­ing thing about ‘The Hand­maid’s Tale’

The ac­tress hopes the show in­spires con­ver­sa­tion.

Metro USA (New York) - - Television - JENNIFER LOGUE @jen­nifer­logue [email protected]

To­day, Mar­garet At­wood’s 1985 dystopian novel, “The Hand­maid’s Tale,” de­buts as a tele­vi­sion se­ries on Hulu, with an all-star cast that in­cludes Elis­a­beth Moss, Ray Fi­ennes and Alexis Bledel.

Set in the not-tood­is­tant-fu­ture world of Gilead, a Chris­tian-fun­da­men­tal­ist theoc­racy has over­thrown the U.S. government and women are stripped of their rights — not able to hold jobs or bank ac­counts.

Due to an epi­demic of in­fer­til­ity, fer­tile women are sent to be­come hand­maids for the up­per classes, which in­cludes hav­ing sex with men in the pres­ence of their wives for the pur­pose of bear­ing chil­dren for the fam­ily.

Scared yet? For Bledel, who plays the hand­maid Of­glen in the se­ries, the most fright­en­ing thing about the story is that it hits aw­fully close to re­al­ity:

“The fact that many of the things in it are not made up [is what scares me most],” she says. “All of this has hap­pened some­where in the world — these are things hu­mans have done or ex­pe­ri­enced some­where. It gives it a fright­en­ingly real as­pect.”

The elec­tion of Don­ald Trump as our 45th pres­i­dent adds even more rel­e­vancy to “The Hand­maid’s Tale,” es­pe­cially con­sid­er­ing the re­cent move to de­fund Planned Par­ent­hood on the state level. The government’s reg­u­la­tion over women’s bod­ies is a theme that runs ram­pant in both the book and se­ries:

“Watch­ing the show does bring up thoughts on women’s re­pro­duc­tive rights for peo­ple,” Bledel ad­mits.

Un­like many a think piece, the 35 year old didn’t get to com­pare the cur­rent na­tion­al­ist lean­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion to the one in the show with the crew be­cause she wrapped film­ing one day post­elec­tion.

“I remember hav­ing a very dif­fer­ent feel­ing in­ter­nally be­cause I was still pro­cess­ing the news,” she re­calls. “But o n set, it was the same set that I knew be­fore. Ev­ery­one was do­ing great work and in good spir­its. If I was there longer, I’m sure I would have had many con­ver­sa­tions about how it un­doubt­edly felt dif­fer­ent.”

At the end of the day, Bledel hopes that the show il­lus­trates the dan­gers of ap­a­thy and sparks pro­duc­tive con­ver­sa­tions:

“The world keeps mov­ing for­ward at a more rapid pace than ever, and it re­quires ac­tion. It re­quires a re­sponse.”

The first three episodes of “The Hand­maid’s Tale” premiere to­day on Hulu.


Alexis Bledel plays Of­glen, a hand­maid in the TV adap­ta­tion of “The Hand­maid’s Tale.” Of­fred and Of­glen ac­com­pany each other to the mar­ket.


Step­ping out­side the lines

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