TWAM 11 NOV 2017
TWAM 11 NOV 2017

Why I’ve had it with The Handmaid’s Tale

I have had it with The Handmaid's Tale.

I can't take any more demented expressions from Elisabeth Moss, whose character June has gone from oppressed baby-maker too scared to sneeze for fear of being hung to the Che Guevara of Gilead organising a revolution right under the Eyes' er, eyes in increasingly preposterous plotlines.

They should have made the show one series only, because as soon as scriptwriters deviated from Margaret Atwood's novel it barrelled downhill.

I hung on through series two, not least for the love scenes with taciturn Nick, but I can go no further. Maybe June's psycho stare into the camera is actually Elisabeth's fury that she's trapped in a show that's becoming sillier than The Stepford Wives.

Streaming giants are keeping TV programs going too long out of greed.

You have to know when to end something - the best example being the original UK four-episode House of Cards, with Ian Richardson as the villainous Francis Urquhart, compared to the six-season Netflix version with allegedly villainous Kevin Spacey as Francis Underwood.

Season 3 of the Handmaid’s Tale is near impossible to watch. Picture: George Kraychyk/Hulu
Season 3 of the Handmaid’s Tale is near impossible to watch. Picture: George Kraychyk/Hulu

Even Game of Thrones lost the plot, literally, when it overtook George R.R. Martin's novels and had to cobble together an ending. To be honest, it would have been a relief had the Night King iced them all in episode three of the last season - not that we'd have noticed as no-one could see anything.

There are a few exceptions - for anyone currently watching the cult hit Fleabag, the second (and final) series is better than the first, whereas the first series of Killing Eve which was written by Fleabag's Phoebe Waller-Bridge, is superior to the second, written by, well, someone else.

Our desire to binge on more and more boxsets means digital giants like Netflix and Amazon are keen to keep hit shows running as long as possible. But the quality inevitably suffers as plots get thinner and writers run out of ideas.

Instead of following the Fawlty Towers rule of stopping too soon, something Ricky Gervais also adheres to, the Netflix effect means they never end on a bang, just a fizzle as viewers start scrolling past.

Season 3 of Stranger Things almost ruined the franchise completely. Picture: Netflix
Season 3 of Stranger Things almost ruined the franchise completely. Picture: Netflix

The UK The Office ran for two seasons, the US version for nine.

In this way I've given up on Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, Killing Eve, Westworld, Suits, Peaky Blinders, Homeland and more and my commitment is being tested by Stranger Things and The Walking Dead.

Stranger Things is hanging by a sci-fi thread, but at least the Duffer Brothers have stated it will be finite.

And if Rick doesn't chopper back in to business next season in The Walking Dead, as is rumoured, I'm out. They have announced a movie, but let's pray to the zombie gods that doesn't turn out like the dead wood that was the recent Deadwood, which took a superb TV series and torched it.

The Walking Dead comic creators recently announced they have put down their pens and ended the epic, which might be a good sign. Surprise revealing it was over, creator Robert Kirkman said he hates knowing he's nearing the end of a TV show, or book.

Mind you, it's way better than thinking something is never going to end. Under his eye and all that.

@KerryParnell