Yvonne Strahovski breaks down shocking ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ finale

Spoilers ahead for “The Handmaid’s Tale” Season 2 finale.  Well, that happened. “The Handmaid’s Tale” ended Season 2 Wednesday on Hulu with a scintillating finale in which evil Aunt Lydia (Ann Dowd) was stabbed in the back, literally, and Offred/June (Elisabeth Moss) was on her way (finally!) to escaping Gilead’s dystopian hell with Holly, her…
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‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 2 Finale Gives Trump Resistance Much Needed Hope

George Kraychyk

Season two of The Handmaid’s Tale has been a tough hang.

From the threat of a mass hanging at Fenway Park in the premiere, to the violent rape of our heroine in the 10th episode, to, most recently, the public drowning of 15-year-old Eden and her forbidden lover, the show’s dystopian landscape was often too brutal to bear.

We were granted a glimmer of hope of when Elisabeth Moss’ June (can we please stop calling her Offred now?) heard Oprah Winfrey’s comforting voice coming through her car radio from “somewhere in the Great White North.” Of course, moments later that hope was dashed when June ultimately failed to bust through the garage door and escape.

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Did you catch Oprah’s secret cameo in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’?

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This post contains mild spoilers for Handmaid’s Tale Season 2, Episode 11

Even in the bleakest fictional dystopias, we can still turn to Oprah Winfrey as humanity’s saving grace.

You might’ve totally missed the benevolent Queen of Broadcast’s subtle cameo in Episode 11 of Handmaid’s Tale Season 2, ‘Holly. But even a small glimmer of her presence provided a rare, needed moment of comfort in one of the most depressing shows to ever air on television.

In the episode, June is desperately trying to figure out how to escape Gilead during an unexpected moment of opportunity. Finding herself alone, extremely pregnant, and stuck in a secluded, snow-logged house, she discovers a functioning car. But that’s not the only god-like intervention.  Read more…

More about Entertainment, Oprah, The Handmaid S Tale, Oprah Winfrey, and The Handmaids Tale Season 2


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Why the rape scene in this week’s ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ was so different — and why that matters

Spoilers ahead for Season 2, Episode 10

Gilead is built on rape. It’s the governing policy, the structure, the code. It’s systematic. Every month, the handmaid is raped. Every month, she lies down between a wife’s opened legs, spreads her own and dissociate while her commander thrusts and groans…

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Reflecting on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ and More TV That Dares You to Stop Watching

“Nolite te bastardes carborundorum.” It’s not actually real Latin, more of a joke phrase, but it was last seen carved inside a wardrobe in a first season episode of The Handmaid’s Tale, where it gave downtrodden hero Offred (Elisabeth Moss) inspiration to rise up against her captors. The translation? “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.”

It’s exactly the kind of worldly wisdom that Offred needed to hear at that moment in time, but it might as well have been delivered directly to the show’s viewers, who by that point had suffered through countless scenes of sadistic behaviour, psychological and physical torture, misogyny, abuse and ritualistic oppression.

An adaptation (and continuation) of the Margaret Atwood novel of the same name, The Handmaid’s Tale opened its second season with a terrifying mass hanging and then got cheerier still — we’ve since seen brutal murders, poisonings and countless scenes of men and women being dragged kicking and screaming to their doom… and those are the good bits. We’ve also discovered that the aforementioned Latin message has been sanded off the wardrobe. Or, in other words, it has been ground down. Fitting, for a show that’s keen on snuffing out hope in even its most futile forms.

PEAK BLEAK

The Handmaid’s Tale is just one of a recent crop of bleak TV shows that seem like they’re daring you to stop watching with each passing episode — it’s as if they take great pleasure in creating worlds where great pleasure itself is forbidden.

Take a series like The Walking Dead — a true ‘peak bleak’ phenomenon if ever there was one. Here we have a show that continues a painful slog towards an ending that couldn’t possibly be considered happy. The Walking Dead is set in a world where the vast majority of humanity has been turned into gurning corpses, so it’s not like we’re expecting quickfire gags and silly moustaches, but when did you last truly enjoy an episode? The showrunners go to such great lengths to set a gruesome and nihilistic tone, they’ve begun actively punishing their characters for enjoying fleeting moments of levity.

Any scene like Negan’s infamous double-header Lucille murder spree isn’t just doling out suffering to its characters — it’s making viewers suffer too. Blow by blow, beat by beat, blood spurt by blood spurt, it pummels us into submission, just like it did Rick Grimes and friends.

SUFFER THE CONSEQUENCES


The Leftovers.

Even critically acclaimed shows, like HBO’s The Leftovers, have been accused of revelling in too much misfortune and misery. A widely-shared Entertainment Weekly article from 2014 by pop culture writer Melissa Maerz bemoaned the gratuitous opening scene to episode ‘Gladys,’ in which a female character is repeatedly stoned to death over an agonising 88-second sequence: “The scene made me feel like I was being punished for something, maybe for tuning in to watch such a grim show. You want to see people suffer? Well, careful what you wish for — take a look at this!”

Shows like Broadchurch and Top Of The Lake investigate child murder and rape and get progressively more glum from there on in. There was barely a single scene in AMC’s The Killing that wasn’t rain-lashed and miserable. Netflix teen suicide drama 13 Reasons Why gave you way more reasons to switch off than it did to keep watching. The latest series of Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story, The Assassination of Gianni Versace, started with the savage and bloody murder of the Italian fashion icon, played out backwards and still ended up more depressing than it started. To embark on a new TV box set these days is to expose yourself to approximately 10 hours of doom, gloom and heartbreak.

So why do we continue to tune in? Why do we return week after week for more of the same? It’s a big question, so to answer it we need to think big. Why do we watch TV? Most people would probably tell you it’s because they want to be entertained — maybe they want to enjoy some escapism from the real world.

Sure, we all like well-told stories and drama and great performances — which all of the aforementioned shows have in abundance — but TV isn’t exactly short on well-written, fun, uplifting shows right now either. In fact, the current climate of bleak TV has let light-hearted comedies like The Good Place thrive (it’s mostly set in Hell, but don’t let that put you off) while shows like Black Mirror purposely skewer the downbeat sensibilities of the peak bleak clique with a dark sense of humour (it was hard to watch ‘Crocodile’ from the latest season without thinking it was a tongue-in-cheek pastiche of soul-destroying Scandi drama).

REALITY BITES


The Jinx.

Television in 2018 is a crowded market, and it’s getting harder for shows to be heard among the white noise — even Netflix struggle to promote ‘originals’ on their own service due to the sheer volume of programming. So, for a show to be truly seen these days — for it to deliver its message as intended — it doesn’t hurt if it does so by being extra shocking or upsetting or relentlessly ghastly. The more raw the audience response, the more that show gets talked about — if you’re feeling something, even revulsion, then the show has made its mark.

But maybe escapism from the real world is not really why we watch TV any more — and maybe some TV is closer to home than we’d like to admit. Documentary series like Making A Murderer, The Keepers and The Jinx use real crimes and real people to keep us hooked: the televisual facade between fact and fiction is getting thinner all the time. After all, we don’t have to watch The Handmaid’s Tale to see crying children torn from their parents’ arms, we just have to turn on the news.

Shows like this reflect the real world back at us but in a more palatable form. We can always stop watching if we want to… but we don’t. Perhaps it’s so we can keep reality at arm’s length. But perhaps, subconsciously, we just want to see what happens next.

EXCLUSIVE: ‘13 Reasons Why’ Actor Defends Season 2’s Most Controversial Scene

The post Reflecting on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ and More TV That Dares You to Stop Watching appeared first on FANDOM.

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Stephen Webster’s New Jewelry Tale

TELLING TALES: Stephen Webster wouldn’t normally put initials on his rebellious jewelry designs, but when the idea of initials — and underwater creatures — surfaced, he changed his mind and a new collection called Fish Tales was born.
The collection consists of 26 dainty gold and diamond charms that show sea creatures entangled with a letter of the alphabet. The collection is accompanied by a short book that captures Webster’s ongoing fascination with the underwater world and tells the stories of the different types of fish featured in the new range, starting with Angelfish and ending with Zebra Turkeyfish.
“Every now and again I have an idea that’s a little outside the box, just like the knives we created last year. Those are the collections that end up becoming our signatures because we always like that element of surprise,” said Webster, who debuted the new collection with a cocktail at Hix restaurant in east London.
An avid writer who published a popular autobiography in 2015, Webster often pens columns for different publications such as the Hix magazine and is always looking to tell stories about his jewelry.
“Jewelry provides a great means of storytelling, you can narrate your way of doing things. This collection

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Mark Rothko’s famous Four Seasons tale retold on stage

Win a night in London, with tickets to see RED in the West End

Mark Rothko is known as one of the greatest abstract expressionists of his generation (although, we should probably say that he personally refused to be associated with any particular art movement or style). His paintings have an incredible depth, and create the feeling that however long and hard you look at them, there is something buried within these artworks that you can’t quite reach. So you sit, and look a little longer.

If you’ve ever sat in the Rothko room at the Tate Modern, surrounded by some of the artist’s vast canvases, you might recognise this sensation that he was pushing us towards with his abstract blocks, created with numerous thin coats of cleverly applied colour – it’s about finding clarity, understanding and experiencing something that is physically bigger than ourselves.

For a man who had been brought up in the orthodox Jewish community in Russia, but who had given up religious practice after the death of his father, painting was a sort of act of worship.

The takeaway from this gallery-based experience? Clearly, Mark Rothko was a complex man.

In the 1950s, as he began to experience significant success on the New York art scene, Rothko was approached by the Four Seasons to complete a commission for their restaurant. Now known as the Seagram murals, the 40 completed paintings in dark red and brown were, at the time, the largest commission in the history of modern art. However, Rothko’s decision to accept the commission was strange – especially as he told a journalist in confidence that his hope was to create ‘something that will ruin the appetite of every son-of-a-bitch who ever eats in that room…’

Drama, obviously followed. Some of the paintings in question are now located in that room we were discussing at London’s Tate Modern rather than in New York, which tells you something. The events that ensued became notorious and, as a story, became a prime topic for a stage play. And then an actual play: John Logan’s RED.

As it returns to London’s West End, for the first time since its world premiere at the Donmar Warehouse in 2009, we (the long-time Rothko fans at artrepublic) have two tickets to give away to you, our art lovers.

RED has been described by the New York Times as being a play ‘with such fierce conviction that it never lets you look away.’ The plot follows Rothko’s experience when, having just received the largest commission in the history of modern art, he finds himself consumed by warring desires for integrity and success.

Having headed up the original London cast, award-winning stage and screen actor Alfred Molina (Raiders of the Lost Ark; Chocolat; Frida; Spiderman 2) reprises his role as Rothko, while breakthrough British actor Alfred Enoch (How to Get Away with Murder; Harry Potter) takes the part of Rothko’s fictional young assistant, Ken, who provokes him to make an agonising discovery about the price of fame.

With this cast, and six Tony Awards, including Best Play and Best Direction to its name, Red is certainly not a story to be missed.

If you’d like to win a pair of tickets to the press night of RED in London’s West End, with a pre-theatre dinner and an overnight stay at One Aldwych, a 5 star central London Hotel, as well as a £100 artrepublic gift voucher, Enter our competition here. Plus 5 runners up will each win a pairs of tickets to see the play. T’s and C’s apply.

Red will run at Wyndham’s Theatre form 4th May to 28th July 2018.

The post Mark Rothko’s famous Four Seasons tale retold on stage appeared first on artrepublic blog.
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‘The Man Who Stole Banksy’ tells Middle East street art tale

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – “The Man Who Stole Banksy,” a street art documentary that will premiere at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival on Friday, spins a tale that mixes would-be art-world avarice with Middle East politics.


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The Handmaid’s Tale Will Return in April With an Even Darker Second Season

We are ready to go back to the future: The second season of The Handmaid’s Tale — which has scooped up just about every major award for its haunting and harrowing adaptation of the classic Margaret Atwood novel — will premiere April 25. And you can get a first look at what’s in store for us above. (Who knew a Buffalo Springfield cover could be so dang creepy?)

Ahead of Sunday’s Television Critics Association panel, it was revealed that the 13-episode season will be focused and shaped by the pregnancy of Offred (Elisabeth Moss) and her struggle to find her daughter inside the nightmare that is Gilead. Returning players in addition to Moss include Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne, Strahovski, Samira Wiley, Alexis Bledel, Ann Dowd, and Max Minghella.

At Sunday’s panel, more details were revealed, including that Marisa Tomei will guest star as a commander’s wife in the second episode, which will take place in the Colonies, signaling an expansion from the original novel’s world. “I certainly don’t think we’re going beyond the story that [Margaret Atwood] was telling,” executive producer Bruce Miller said. “She’s very much the mother of the series.”

Speaking of mothers, star and producer Moss reiterated that this season is all about motherhood. “It’s a wonderful thing to have a baby, but [Offred] is having it potentially in this world that she may not want to bring it into,” Moss said, adding, “I get bigger and bigger as the show goes on.”

When asked whether any real-life events make them want to change anything on the show, Miller said, “We have a few more months to go before we premiere, and certainly things can catch up to us. We’ve already had things where we thought about, shot them, put them in episodes, and then almost exactly the same images are on television. But I don’t think it’s a reason to jump in and start changing stuff.”

As for the tone on the series, Miller said, “There’s a lot of horror and cruelty and dread in this situation, but there’s also a lot of absurdity. I feel like June is always this close to turning to the camera and being, like, ‘What the actual f—.’”

Season 2 will kick off with two new episodes on the 25th and then will follow with new ones every Wednesday on Hulu. Moss said she thinks the second season will be even darker than the first, and when EW spoke to Miller earlier this month, he had one suggestion for how to prepare for viewings: “a bottle of scotch.”

Additional reporting by Natalie Abrams

This article originally appeared on Ew.com.


Entertainment – TIME

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A chilling tale of how easy it is for banks to lose your money

Two years ago, I wrote a column that frightened a lot of people. Now, I’m going to scare you again — this time, maybe even more. That column, which appeared on Sept. 24, 2015, explained that it had become easier for states to confiscate people’s bank, money market and other financial accounts because they were…
Opinion | New York Post

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The US oil phenomenon that could help spark the ‘tale of two markets’

The Oil Price Information Service's Tom Kloza, who predicted the 2015 oil collapse, gives us his latest prediction.
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‘Puppetmaster’: Charles Band Tells Scary Tale About Mysterious Fan | PeopleTV

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‘SNL,’Big Little Lies,’ ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ rule at Trump-flavored Emmys

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – “The Handmaid’s Tale” and political comedy “Veep” won the top prizes at the Emmy awards on Sunday, but satirical sketch show “Saturday Night Live” won the most Emmys overall on the back of a season of Donald Trump spoofs.


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Emmys 2017: ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Wins Big, ‘Stranger Things’ Actors Shut Out

The Handmaid’s Tale was the big winner at the Emmy 2017 Sunday Night.

The Hulu drama — set in a dystopian future where a totalitarian government forces the few remaining fertile women to breed against their will — won eight awards, including the coveted best drama (Game of Thrones was ineligible this year), best director for Reed Morano (the first woman to win in the category in 22 years), as well as acting accolades for Elisabeth Moss (best actress) and Ann Dowd (best supporting actress).

Dowd’s surprise win meant that Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown’s dream to become the youngest Emmy winner went unfulfilled. Brown, just 13, played telekinetic Eleven in the Netflix series, and was an audience favorite at Emmys 2017.

Her costar, David Harbour, who played Police Chief Jim Hopper, lost the supporting actor category to The Crown’s John Lithgow. Another show that got snubbed in the acting categories was FX’s Feud, including veteran actresses Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange.

Outside of The Handmaid’s Tale, another genre show that did well was Black Mirror. The “San Junipero” episode won awards for best limited series or TV movie and writing in a limited series or TV movie. Westworld didn’t win any major awards Sunday night, but picked up five awards at last weekend’s Creative Arts Emmys. Expect its fellow HBO series Game of Thrones to clean up next year when it returns to eligibility.

Even without Game of Thrones, HBO was still the biggest Emmys 2017 winner, thanks to Veep, Big Little Lies and The Night Of. The cable network won a total of 29 awards. It was followed by Hulu with 20, bolstered by the success of The Handmaid’s Tale.

It seemed that cable and streaming networks would dominate the Emmys 2017, but NBC’s longstanding Saturday Night Live, which saw renewed focus and audiences during the election, brought home nine trophies. NBC’s The Voice also edged out RuPaul’s Drag Race in the reality TV competition category.

See the complete list of 2017 Emmy winners here.

‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Is Our American Dystopia

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Laughing in crisis, Venezuelan acts out dissident Ortega’s tale

CARACAS (Reuters) – Laughing at their own tribulations, Venezuelan theatergoers have been enjoying a new satire about a senior official who broke with President Nicolas Maduro and fled the socialist-ruled country in a boat.


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From Broadway’s ‘Hamilton’ to ‘A Bronx Tale,’ Ariana DeBose Is a Rising Star

debose (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Serge Public Relations)

 

Currently starring as Jane, the leading lady in the Broadway musical A Bronx Tale, 26-year-old Ariana DeBose has been on the fast-track since she moved to the Big Apple in 2011, when she was only 19.

A Bronx Tale is based on the 1993 movie, which depicts life in an Italian-American community during the turbulent era of the 1960s. The production is directed by two-time Academy Award winner Robert DeNiro and four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks, who is also directing Bette Midler in the current smash Broadway revival of Hello Dolly.  A Bronx Tale was written by Academy Award nominee Chazz Palminteri, who partly based the story on his childhood. Both DeNiro and Palminteri starred in the 1993 screen drama. The creative team of A Bronx Tale also includes other multiple award winners, including lead producer and music mogul Tommy Mottola. DeBose stars opposite Bobby Conte Thornton, who plays Calogero, Jane’s love interest.

 

DeBose and Bobby Conte Thornton (Image: Joan Marcus, 2016)

 

DeBose joined the cast of A Bronx Tale after her successful run in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton: An American Musical, which broke box office records and changes the course of American musical theater. The show received an unprecedented 16 Tony Award nominations, winning 11 awards, including Best Musical. Hamilton received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and a Grammy Award for Best Theater Album.

“An Experience of a Lifetime”

 

DeBose, who was in the original company of Hamilton, was involved with that show from its early stages during the developmental workshop. She performed during the opening run at the New York Public Theater, through the Broadway debut with the original cast up until her departure in July 2016. DeBose says it’s been an experience of a lifetime to join the cast of A Bronx Tale and works closely with DeNiro and Zaks.

 

(Photo Credit: Monica Simoes)

 

“He [Robert DeNiro] was very present during our rehearsal process and our previews,” says DeBose. “It was amazing to work with both of them, and they worked great together as a team. Bob was very much into the details, and yes, he let me call him Bob. He’s a very easygoing man, and he came off to me as a big teddy bear. He is tough, but he’s a nice man who likes to act. We got along well. He can be a man of few words, but when he does speak, you know to listen. I didn’t approach him initially. I was trying to rate the room, but he was lovely. He came up to me and said, ‘Hi, I’m Bob. We’re really excited to have you.’ He has a very kind spirit. He still comes to visit the show fairly frequently.”

Before DeBose’s role in A Bronx Tale, she was cast primarily as a dancer and as an ensemble member. “I did a lot of dancing in Hamilton,” says DeBose, “When people come to see A Bronx Tale, they say, ‘Wait—we didn’t know you sing.’”

“When I arrived in New York at 19 years old, I figured out very quickly that I could work often if I did a lot of different things,” says DeBose. “If I could not just dance—if I could sing and act—that meant I could, as a young person, be an on-stage cover. I could be in their ensemble, and work, and be more valuable if I could also play a part-time lead. That’s how I look at understudying; it’s like you’re a part-time lead. You’re not a full-time lead.”

 

(Image: Joan Marcus, 2016)

 

For now, DeBose is strictly focused on her role as a leading lady. With eight shows a week and limited time to explore other opportunities, she says. “I’m taking this time to enjoy the work, because it’s not often you get to, and it’s not often I get to play a part like Jane that requires me to keep it fresh every night.”


Gwendolyn Quinn is an award-winning media consultant with a career spanning more than 25 years. She is a contributor to BlackEnterprise.com, Black Enterprise’s BE Pulse, Huffington Post, EURWEB.com, and Medium.com. Quinn is also a contributor to Souls Revealed and Handle Your Entertainment Business.

 

Lifestyle – Black Enterprise

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Desperately seeking sneakers: A fashion editor’s tale of woe and triumph

Leave it to Alexander Wang to up the hype-beast ante. The OG prince of athleisure’s second collection with Adidas will be released worldwide Saturday — but it dropped in NYC last week in an unexpected fashion: with a citywide scavenger hunt. Posters promoting the collection were hung strategically around the city. Sneaker freaks who sought…
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The Strange, True Tale of the ‘Yankees Suck’ T-Shirt

You know the one.

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‘Handmaid’s Tale’ Memes Flood Twitter As Women Respond To Health Care Bill

On Thursday, House Republicans finally voted through legislation that would repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), replacing it with a bill that would, among other consequences, make things like pregnancy, postpartum depression and rape pre-existing conditions.

As a result, the new American Health Care Act (AHCA) ― yet to be passed in the Senate ― could put women in particular at risk of being denied coverage or having to pay the higher premiums that Obamacare previously banned. According to HuffPost’s Catherine Pearson, an amendment to the bill “effectively gives states permission to discriminate against women.” (Though House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has denied this.)

It didn’t take long for people on Twitter to respond with a meme that’s become terrifyingly relevant to American politics: images from “The Handmaid’s Tale,” Hulu’s adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s eerily prescient 1985 novel.

Screenshots of women in red robes and white bonnets began flooding social media, accompanied by chilling parallels between today’s health care chaos and the book’s depiction of a theocratic regime that subjugates women after taking control of their reproductive rights. 

In The Handmaid’s Tale, Atwood’s dire account of a near-future United States called Gilead, an authoritarian government rises to power and quickly decides to drain women’s bank accounts, the first step in a series of shockingly quick policy moves that seem to strip women of their status as equal citizens before they even had a chance to fight back.

“I was asleep before,” Offred, played by Elisabeth Moss, proclaims in a trailer for the Hulu show. “That’s how we let it happen.”

Even Atwood herself has admitted that her book seems more relevant now than ever.

Women had already been protesting state senates by dressing as handmaids in an attempt to raise awareness of certain lawmakers’ pushes to limit reproductive health in states like Missouri, Minnesota and Texas. On Thursday, opponents of the AHCA followed suit, posting images and references to Gilead in the hours after the House decision in order to make their stance clear.

In a piece titled “Women In The U.S. Don’t Live In A Dystopian Hellscape. Yet,” HuffPost’s Emily Peck rightly pointed out that, despite the setbacks that have occurred under President Donald Trump’s administration, women in the U.S. have helped push for progress in 2017, too.

“The resistance in the U.S. is very much alive and well,” Peck wrote. “And in the first 100 days of the Trump administration, it’s been remarkably effective.” She cited the ousting of longtime Fox news host Bill O’Reilly, the “unprecedented” numbers of women considering running for office in upcoming elections, and the failure of other policies like Trump’s anti-immigration orders, which was fought by a huge number of female immigration lawyers.

Still, as Congress mulls a health care plan that could potentially put individuals’ lives at risk, women (and men!) are quick to voice their opposition to anything that resembles Gilead. 

And the tweets keep coming.

type=type=RelatedArticlesblockTitle=Related… + articlesList=58d570c6e4b02a2eaab3de52,5909a595e4b02655f8424d2f,58ffb42de4b0073d3e7a1d0c,58fb61a3e4b00fa7de14b77d,58e7de23e4b058f0a02f0adb,58eb8840e4b00de141050bef,58c05330e4b0ed7182696155

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Elisabeth Moss Isn’t Too Subtle About the Trump-Handmaid’s Tale Connection

She debuted a clip with Stephen Colbert last night.

Lifestyle – Esquire

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The Handmaid’s Tale Has Already Become One of the Most Influential Shows of 2017

The chilling official trailer just dropped.

Lifestyle – Esquire

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Margaret Atwood Admits ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Is More Relevant Than Ever

A religious fundamentalist society swiftly takes away women’s autonomy — and their rights to their own bodies. If you think the plot of Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel The Handmaid’s Tale, now widely studied, sounds familiar, you’re not alone: the author agrees.

In response to a fan who tweeted, “I read The #HandmaidsTale for the first time during the Obama administration & even that honeymoon wasn’t enough to make it seem unrealistic,” the author responded, “Yes it does seem like the pause before whatever it is that’s happening now … ”

Atwood’s book, about a woman named Offred who serves as a sexual surrogate to a family that’s having trouble conceiving, will be released as a TV adaptation on Hulu in April.

The author has been vocal about the story’s ties to today’s political climate. In a letter she shared through PEN/America in January, she cautioned against “dictators of any kind.” She began the letter with a quote from the novel: “Freedom, like everything else, is relative.”

Also on HuffPost:

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Welcome To An All-Too Real Dystopia In First ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Trailer

Things might look pretty bleak in America currently, but at least we aren’t living in a totalitarian regime… yet.

The first trailer for Hulu’s television adaptation of the celebrated Margaret Atwood novel The Handmaid’s Tale arrived on Saturday and we’re already prepared to declare the upcoming 10-episode series as our new favorite TV show. 

“The Handmaid’s Tale” follows a group of women living under an oppressive theocracy that only values them for procreation. In the 30-second clip, we meet Offred (Elisabeth Moss), who is forced contend with this new dystopian reality after being separated from her husband and daughter. 

 “I had another name, but it’s forbidden now,” she says. “So many things are forbidden now.”

We have an endless amount of questions after watching the teaser, but all we can think about is where are they taking Alexis Bledel?!

Ugh, this would never happen in Stars Hollow. 

“The Handmaid’s Tale” premieres Wednesday, April 26 on Hulu.

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Disney Princess Favorite Moments Belle Fairy Tale Scene Playset Toy

Disney Princess Favorite Moments Belle Fairy Tale Scene Playset Toy


Disney Princess Favorite Moments Belle Fairy Tale Scene Playset Toy Based On Disney’s Classic Beauty & The Beast. Girls Can Recreate Their Favorite Fairytale Moments. Recommended Age: 3 Years & Up. Model: R4890. Features Belle, Chip, Mrs. Pots & Furniture From The Movie
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Penny Lane Musical Mobile by Cotton Tale Designs

Penny Lane Musical Mobile by Cotton Tale Designs


Penny Lane musical mobile has a roush trimmed canopy in eggplant mosaic. Four flowers with roush centers and a center butterfly dance around under the canopy to Brahmans lullaby. The arm cover is in retro floral. Mobiles should be removed from the crib when the baby begins to sit & pull up.
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Winter’s Tale

Winter’s Tale


FOLGER Shakespeare Library THE WORLD’S LEADING CENTER FOR SHAKESPEARE STUDIES "Each edition includes: " – Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play – Full explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play – Scene-by-scene plot summaries – A key to famous lines and phrases – An introduction to reading Shakespeare’s language – An essay by a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play – Illustrations from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s vast holdings of rare books "Essay by" Stephen Orgel The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., is home to the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs.
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Lollipops & Roses Musical Mobile by Cotton Tale Designs

Lollipops & Roses Musical Mobile by Cotton Tale Designs


Part of the Lollipops & Roses baby bedding collection, pink shimmer hearts circle a tan velvet heart under a canopy of pink angel toile trimmed with a pink shimmer ruffle in this musical mobile. Each heart is trimmed with organza ribbon and the mobile neck is sheathed in warm tan velvet.
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Retro/Micro Beer Jerseys LLC Men’s Fish Tale Leavenworth Jersey

Retro/Micro Beer Jerseys LLC Men’s Fish Tale Leavenworth Jersey


Men’s Fish Tale Leavenworth Jersey by Retro/Micro Beer Jerseys From its home in beautiful Olympia, Washington, Fish Brewing Company has been hand-crafting ales of Northwest proportions since 1993. Founded by Crayne and Mary Horton and a few dozen local investors, Fish began operations humbly. With a 15-barrel brew house, two 15-barrel fermenters, and one dairy tank, we brewed for our neighbors up and down Puget Sound. Growing steadily since, Fish is now an award-winning craft brewer with distribution throughout the great Pacific Northwest and beyond.
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M & M & Me (An MMF Menage Tale)

M & M & Me (An MMF Menage Tale)


Jess is not looking forward to a night out with her husband Matt’s old friend, Milton. But all that changes when she discovers that Milton is her every sexual fantasy and Matt is okay with sharing her for the night.This 6000 word story contains graphic m/f and m/f/m sex, including oral and anal.Excerpt:I start walking down the hall, pretending nothing is out of the ordinary. The men catch up to me quickly. Four hands are undressing me before I can take another step. Matt unzips my dress. Milton slips it off my shoulders and down to the floor. His eyes slide up back up my body and I see him smile, surprised that I wasn’t wearing any underwear. Those four hands all over me. Exploring like they’ve never touched a woman before.I start unbuttoning Milton’s shirt as I kick off my shoes. I’ve been dying to see that body unclothed. I am not disappointed. He’s built like an Olympic swimmer, all muscles and shoulders. I run my fingers down his abs, unbutton his dark-wash jeans and pull them down with his boxers just far enough that his fully erect cock is on display. I push him gently against the wall and stand tip-toe so that his shaft is between my thighs when I press myself against him. “Hold that thought,” I whisper, and turn around to undress my husband, who had been watching intently.“I want to watch you f*** Milton for now, baby,” Matt says, “Just enjoy yourself. I’ll take a turn in a bit.”Milton needs no more encouragement.

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Was There Really a Need For ‘Dolphin Tale 2’?

Now we have a sequel to the popular film Dolphin Tale. The question is why? The first movie was pretty complete in its story of a dolphin named Winter who had lost her dorsal fin. Her rescuers created a prosthesis for her and she adapted to it beautifully. And she lived happily ever after – end of story. No, no! Not when that movie made a good bit of money and there was surely more loot in that dolphin. So now we have Dolphin Tale 2, the story of Winter when she got depressed over not having a dolphin friend.

All of the cast from the previous movie are back including Ashley Judd, Harry Connick,Jr., Morgan Freeman and Kris Kristofferson. The question is why. They have very little to do in this film. Their characters are basically just there to give support to the two kids who have leading roles. These are Nathan Gamble and Cozi Zuehlsdorff who play Sawyer and Hazel.

Sawyer works at the Clearwater Marine Hospital where Winter lives and is cared for. Hazel is the daughter of Dr. Clay Haskett (Connick) who runs the hospital. They are devoted to Winter and become most upset when Winter shows signs of being depressed because she does not have another dolphin to pal around with. They have a solution but it is not one the adults are willing to use.

The storyline is one children should enjoy, and it will entertain the adults that accompany them. It is not high drama but it is sufficiently interesting. Supposedly this plot is also based on a true occurrence and that fact also interest.

The two young actors are very good in their roles and the dolphins play out the roles they have been given. Even the adult actors are fine, though they are given little to do. Judd is appropriately maternal while Connick is a bit stiff as the head operator of the hospital. Freeman gets to play the amiable man who helped fashion Winter’s prostheses.

The film is rated PG for mild drama with the animals.

There probably wasn’t a real need for a sequel to Dolphin Tale. It had told its story pretty completely.

However, since they were determined to make another one they did make it as appealing as possible. Children will once again delight in a story about dolphins being so human-like they need a friend, and will enjoy the fact that good humans are there to provide them with love, care and attention.

I scored Dolphin Tale 2 a sequeled 6 out of 10.

Jackie K Cooper
www.jackiekcooper.com
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Technical Difficulties: An Erotic Office Tale

Technical Difficulties: An Erotic Office Tale


After a long day at the office, the company IT guy, Justin, just wants to go home. But when he’s called on a last-minute job, he’s forced to go and fix the computer of a sultry and domineering businesswoman on the 19th floor. Alyson, a busty redhead with a soft spot for sexy nerds like Justin, has some big plans in mind. Her husband simply hasn’t been fulfilling her needs, and she’ll do anything for some action. Alyson has a desk drawer full of toys and she loves to be in control. Justin thinks he’s just doing a routine computer repair, but what kind of kinky, erotic journey will he unexpectedly undergo?

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The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Illustrated)

The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Illustrated)


The Tale of Peter Rabbit is a children’s book written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter that follows mischievous and disobedient young Peter Rabbit as he is chased about the garden of Mr. McGregor. He escapes and returns home to his mother who puts him to bed after dosing him with chamomile tea. The tale was written for five-year-old Noel Moore, son of Potter’s former governess Annie Carter Moore, in 1893. It was revised and privately printed by Potter in 1901 after several publishers’ rejections but was printed in a trade edition by Frederick Warne & Co. in 1902. The book was a success, and multiple reprints were issued in the years immediately following its debut. It has been translated into 36 languages and with 45 million copies sold it is one of the best-selling books of all time. The book has generated considerable merchandise over the decades since its release for both children and adults with toys, dishes, foods, clothing, videos and other products made available. Potter was one of the first to be responsible for such merchandise when she patented a Peter Rabbit doll in 1903 and followed it almost immediately with a Peter Rabbit board game. By making the hero of the tale a disobedient and rebellious little rabbit, Potter subverted her era’s definition of the good child and the literary hero genre which typically followed the adventures of a brave, resourceful, young white male. Peter Rabbit appeared as a character in a 1971 ballet film, and the tale has been adapted to an animated television series. The book includes original colored illustrations by Beatrix Potter and a FREE audiobook link for download (which can be downloaded separately using a PC/Mac) at the end of the book.

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The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle

The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle


The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle is a children’s book written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter. It was published by Frederick Warne & Co. in October 1905. Mrs. Tiggy-winkle is a hedgehog washerwoman who lives in a tiny cottage in the fells of the Lake District. A child named Lucie happens upon the cottage and stays for tea. The two deliver freshly laundered clothing to the animals and birds in the neighbourhood. Potter thought the book would be best enjoyed by girls, and, like most girls’ books of the period, it is set indoors with a focus on housework. Potter’s pet hedgehog, Mrs. Tiggy-winkle, and Kitty MacDonald, a Scottish washerwoman, were the inspirations for the eponymous heroine. Lucie Carr, a child friend of Potter’s, was the model for the fictional Lucie. Potter’s Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny make cameo appearances in the illustrations. The Newlands Valley and the surrounding fells are the sources for the backgrounds in the illustrations. Mrs. Tiggy-winkle has been described as one of Potter’s most positive creations, but critics consider Lucie an artistic failure. Although Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle is set in an identifiable place and time period, the tale is mythologized by reaching back to an age when household chores were performed manually and without the aid of modern mechanical inventions. The simple dwellings, rustic pathways, and stone fences enhance the tale’s timeless aspect and suggest an unchanging countryside and its way of life. Mrs. Tiggy-winkle became a popular character and the subject of considerable merchandise over the decades including nursery ware and porcelain figurines. The tale has been published in braille and the Initial Teaching Alphabet, and has been translated into French, German, and Dutch. In 1971, Mrs. Tiggy-winkle became a character performed by Sir Frederick Ashton in the Royal Ballet film, The Tales of Beatrix Potter. In 1993, the tale was adapted to animation and telecast as an episode of the BBC series, The World of Peter Rab

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Swept Up by the Sea: A Romantic Fairy Tale

Swept Up by the Sea: A Romantic Fairy Tale


Determined to seek his fortune, Percival Taylor leaves behind his sleepy hometown and sets out to become a legendary pirate. The only problem is, no one at the rough-and-tumble seaport of Blackshore will allow him anywhere near a ship Percival must find other means to win the heart of the beautiful Tuppence Magrathia Paddock, who has mistaken him for a pirate rogue out of one of her romantic books. She is entirely willing to swoon into his arms if he can prove his buccaneer soul and she will even arrange her won kidnaping to prove it. Percival eventually finds himself captain of a broken-down ship, complete with a crew of reluctant pirates, a jilted fianc e, a reclusive master shipwright, and an old professor with a magical secret that could kill them all. Join the strangest assortment of characters you ll ever meet on the Nine Seas as they set sail for treasure and romance

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The Tale of Peter Rabbit

The Tale of Peter Rabbit


Peter Rabbit, his sisters Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail, and his mother are anthropomorphic rabbits who dress in human clothing and generally walk upright on their hind legs, though they live in a rabbit hole under a fir-tree. Mother Rabbit has forbidden her children to enter the garden of Mr. McGregor: it was there that their father met his untimely end and became the ingredient of a pie. However, while Mrs. Rabbit is shopping and the girls are collecting blackberries, Peter sneaks into the garden. There, he gorges on vegetables until he gets sick, and is then chased about by Mr. McGregor. When Peter loses his jacket and his shoes, Mr. McGregor uses them to dress a scarecrow. After several close encounters with Mr. McGregor, Peter escapes the garden and returns to his mother exhausted and ill. She puts him to bed with a dose of camomile tea while his sisters (who have been good little bunnies) enjoy bread and milk and blackberries for supper. In a 1904 sequel, The Tale of Benjamin Bunny, Peter returns to McGregor’s garden to retrieve his lost clothes.

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The Simpsons Episodes, Season 12: Treehouse of Horror XI, Homr, Day of the Jackanapes, Children of a Lesser Clod, a Tale of Two Springfields

The Simpsons Episodes, Season 12: Treehouse of Horror XI, Homr, Day of the Jackanapes, Children of a Lesser Clod, a Tale of Two Springfields


New – Purchase includes free access to book updates online and a free trial membership in the publisher’s book club where you can select from more than a million books without charge. Chapters: Treehouse of Horror Xi, Homr, Day of the Jackanapes, Children of a Lesser Clod, a Tale of Two Springfields, Insane Clown Poppy, Pokey Mom, Trilogy of Error, Worst Episode Ever, Skinner’s Sense of Snow, Homer Vs. Dignity, Hungry, Hungry Homer, the Computer Wore Menace Shoes, Simpsons Tall Tales, Lisa the T

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