With the second season of The Handmaid’s Tale audiences were ruthlessly pulled back into the cloying horror of Gilead. After last season’s finale ended with the Handmaids proudly defying the Aunts, the first episode revealed how gruesome the punishments in this dystopian society can be.

For those viewers who haven’t watched the first season yet, I sincerely suggest getting a Hulu subscription (or borrowing a friends login) just to watch this series. You might also want to stop reading this review to avoid any season one spoilers (I have other reviews you can check out at arts.hersamacorn.com).

Binging The Handmaid’s Tale is not an easy task (take it slowly, friends), given that the content of the series is so dark and emotionally draining and given that viewers essentially witness a domino effect of atrocities. However, despite the nightmarish violence that flows through Gilead, this season gives the audience a glimmer of hope and reveals that the women in this series haven’t given up quite yet. The women in this series resist, they fight back through a variety of actions and even when they seem to give in to the demands of this monstrous society, the ladies of Gilead (not just the Handmaids) act against the arcane laws.

The second season highlights the bonds of motherhood, uniting the most unlikely characters through a mother’s love. The audience also gains more insight into Gilead’s colonies and the lives of the American refugees living in Canada.

The Handmaid’s Tale has two seasons available on Hulu. Audiences may also enjoy Netflix’s Alias Grace, a thriller about an innocent woman sharing her story about how she became a famed murderess. For viewers looking for lighter fare, the hilarious and witty Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is on Amazon.