The Handmaid's Tale: Season 2 (2018)

SEASON:

Season 2
The Handmaid's Tale

Critics Consensus

Beautifully shot but dishearteningly relevant, The Handmaid's Tale centers its sophomore season tightly around its compelling cast of characters, making room for broader social commentary through more intimate lenses.

89%

TOMATOMETER

Critic Ratings: 99

81%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1285
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Episodes

1
Air date: Apr 25, 2018
2
Air date: Apr 25, 2018
3
Air date: May 2, 2018
4
Air date: May 9, 2018
5
Air date: May 16, 2018
6
Air date: May 23, 2018
7
Air date: May 30, 2018
8
Air date: Jun 6, 2018
9
Air date: Jun 13, 2018
10
Air date: Jun 20, 2018
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The Handmaid's Tale: Season 2 Videos

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Tv Season Info

The Emmy-winning drama series returns with a second season shaped by Offred's pregnancy and her ongoing fight to free her future child from the dystopian horrors of Gilead. "Gilead is within you" is a favorite saying of Aunt Lydia. In Season Two, Offred and all our characters will fight against -- or succumb to -- this dark truth.

News & Interviews for The Handmaid's Tale: Season 2

Critic Reviews for The Handmaid's Tale Season 2

All Critics (99) | Top Critics (36)

The fourth [episode is]... the show's best depiction to date of how unearned guilt holds a vice on one's identity, fragmenting it into abstract concepts of good and evil that leave no space for the true essence of humanity.

Apr 25, 2018 | Full Review…

The most compelling scenes in the new season are the ones that explore how exactly Gilead took over America, and that draw on contemporary events and figures with eerie relevance.

Apr 25, 2018 | Full Review…

The Handmaid's Tale is powerful and propulsive. After the first three episodes, when the horrors become more predictable, it's even pretty watchable.

Apr 24, 2018 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Still excellent, still a desperately bleak downer.

Apr 23, 2018 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

I was blown away by the first hours of the new season, which are so gripping that my blood pressure rose right along with my admiration for everyone behind this series.

Apr 23, 2018 | Full Review…

Handmaid's Tale had a tough act to follow, but its second coming soars on multiple levels

Apr 25, 2018 | Rating: A | Full Review…
Top Critic

Sifting through themes of faith, abandonment, and responsibility, The Handmaid's Tale season 2 is a powerful return to a world that none of us want to live in.

Feb 16, 2019 | Full Review…

The constant to-and-fro of hope and despair, the sheer defiance in the era of #MeToo, and the ever-enthralling talent of Elisabeth Moss make The Handmaid's Tale one of the most gripping TV shows to date.

Jul 13, 2018 | Full Review…

The Handmaid's Tale has returned with a searing second season that dwells on how the spirit of Gilead, where women have no control over their bodies, has always been alive in the real world.

Mar 11, 2019 | Full Review…

Once again, The Handmaid's Tale ignores the realities of racial history to tell a colourblind story of struggle that erases the contributions of black and brown women.

Mar 9, 2019 | Full Review…

If The Handmaid's Tale has any story to tell us about current conditions at all, it is this: progressive white women from good homes were waiting for a show that depicted their class as resilient, traumatised sex slaves.

Mar 1, 2019 | Full Review…

This was, in my view, the perfect conclusion to a middle-brow stinker...

May 7, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Handmaid's Tale: Season 2

  • 6d ago
    The show has truly outdone itself, balancing pain and hope with a razor thin margin.
  • Dec 11, 2019
    Boring... I hoped season 2 would be better.
  • Oct 09, 2019
    The 1984 book explores the issues of female rights, religion, and individual liberties. Although I loved both the book and the series, I can't ignore their differences. Though both are important and relevant, they have different missions and different lessons. The ideal would be for audiences to read and watch both; they inform each other, each provides what the other lacks. There are a few inconsistencies between the novel and the series. Certain things happen differently, and some things don't happen at all. Though Margaret Atwood was included in the production of the show, ironically, she had no power or control of the making of it. The book itself is only represented though the first season of the show, which allowed Season 2 to move away from the book and into more modern politics. Important parallels can still be drawn between wars, politics, and empowerment movements, but there are just certain elements of the book that had to be changed for the screen. Below, I have gathered a list of ways the show differs from the book, for anyone who was wondering the specifics.
  • Sep 05, 2019
    Hated season 1 but decided to give the show a second chance. Season 2 was even a bigger disappointment.
  • Aug 15, 2019
    Season Two of The Handmaid's Tale is the perfect continuation of Season One, yet it comes back even stronger with new, shocking conflicts. Moss, Fiennes, and Strahovski all have incredible chemistry together on screen, and this season, the tension is stronger than ever. The Handmaid's Tale manages to get better and better with every episode as the writers and actors push their talents to a whole new level.
  • Jul 08, 2019
    This season has been extremely disappointing, the seconds star is only for the one episode when Nichole ( the baby ) got out. The rest of the season has been one disappointment after another. Very dry and soulless. This season has relentlessly offered no hope or moments of joy to hold onto, not enough to counteract the depressive, making it completely dark and depressing. I enjoyed the first season, this season has me questioning if i ever want to watch it again. So far i feel this will be the last season i will watch, i would not dare subject myself to pure depression, oppression and hopelessness again, with no chance of light.
  • Jul 08, 2019
    Boring! Very disappointed in this season so far.
  • May 27, 2019
    The first season was a brilliant adaptation of Atwood's brillant book. The 2nd season, however, shows that they're off the source material, and this is frustrating. It is still exquisitely crafted and acted, and they do have decent writers. But they now seem to be blinded by the accolades (or money?) and want to drag the series on forever - apparently without knowing what new to say, or where to take the story. The 1st season showed Atwood's genius in building the world, atmosphere, characters and story with such efficiency and effectiviness. The 2nd season, however, brings little new to what already was. The story (and character traits) keeps resetting, the pace is glacial, and a lot of time is spent with unnecessary flashbacks. It's understandable to now expand from Offred's POV, but this is not used well. Things that were told in jarringly curt - and therefore impactful - sentences in season 1 (e.g. what happens in the Colonies, or how Ofglen's pre-war fleeing attempt was aborted), are now spelt out in tediously drawn out sequences (many of which I fastforwarded). If only this had been condensed to, say, 5 episodes, as a preface to season 3 (assuming they'll then move on with the story). Now, it's just too much of everything; of trying to manipulate the audience feelings. Everybody speaks and does things incredibly slowly and sparsely. Elizabeth Moss emotes in countless of exteme closeups. Darkness, bleakness, torture. And women crying; goodness, so much of women crying! It almost felt like a parody towards the end - which is a terrible result, considering how horrific the subject is. The protagonist has also become a problem. Part of her appeal in the source material is how she's anonymous, one of many, could be any one of us. Passive and timid, and thus relatable. Now, it feels she's being built into a Chosen One, out of the blue. SPOILERS: Bizarrely, dozens of people risk (and lose) they're lives just to help Offred escape. Not the other Handmaids, not the taken children, and pointedly not themselves. Why her then? She hasn't even asked for help, just passively sulked around with a jutting chin - and chooses actually not to escape, twice. All the while Offred and the other main characters are protected by an unbreakable plot armour - and their hazardous behavior exposes that they know it. They survive everything, and make implausible comebacks after misdeeds that would behead anyone else. This shoots holes in the story logic, and lessens the feel of dread. Yet - I still have hope for season 3.
  • May 12, 2019
    Just as good as the first season. Amazing TV. This is the benchmark for quality right here.
  • Apr 14, 2019
    Each episode is thrilling.

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