Everything You Need To Know About The Handmaid's Tale Before Watching

George Kraychyk/Hulu
Like a latent illness, The Handmaid’s Tale was introduced to the general public in 1986, but has been waiting until 2017 to blossom to its full potency. As with all effective science fiction, the novel's imagined future provides a lens through which we can reconsider our present. And through the distorted, misogynistic looking glass of The Handmaid’s Tale, our present isn’t looking too pretty.
The dystopian novel, written by the incomparable, prolific Margaret Atwood, envisions an America utterly altered by a religious coup. Offred, once a woman with a husband and child, now works as a handmaid: someone who bears the children of high-ranking officials. As Offred navigates the new social order in the Republic of Gilead, which pits women against women and executes any dissidents, she desperately fights to hold on to the woman she was before.
Now, an adaptation is arriving to Hulu that’s guaranteed to rock your world — and your conception of life in America. From basic plot background to juicy details surrounding the book’s publication, here's everything you need to know to get ready for the Hulu debut.
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