At Last, a Handmaid’s Tale Just For Men

"They ruined Ghostbusters, and we didn't wake up then either."
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Bless everything about this pitch-perfect Funny or Die parody of The Handmaid’s Tale TV adaptation, which stars “Manfred.”

“I was asleep before,” Manfred tells us in the voiceover, in a comedic echo of the promotions Hulu ran featuring Elisabeth Moss’ Offred. “When they didn’t date us because of feminism, we didn’t wake up. They ruined Ghostbusters, and we didn’t wake up then either. And when they were being shrill bitches 24/7, we didn’t wake up. And now, we are Handmen. The feminazis own us … like more or less. My name is Manfred.”

The parody goes on to show a tongue-in-cheek dystopia for men where (gasp!) some women are included as senior VPs at the executive table (so that the old sexist jokes that thrived in an all-bro space are out). “All I said was that she looked like she could take a dick! It was a compliment!” Manfred’s colleague wails as he is dragged from the boardroom. “Handmen” are seen praising the “strong female protagonist” of a film they saw (it’s Wonder Woman) under brainwashed coercion.

“Men used to be respected,” Manfred laments. “I mean, we can still get wasted and eat tacos, but call feminism an ugly girl thing and it’s jail for you.” Then we see a female law enforcement officer using her baton to get him to stop manspreading. Interspersed with these scenes terrifying to men who are terrified of female equality are fake pull-quotes from the worst MRA hives on the Internet. “If you’re a men’s rights activist, you’ll be shaken to your strong, masculine core.” — thereturnofkings

There’s a “resistance” to be found on 4chan and, one man tells another; his username there “lenadunhamhater69.”

“I just want to be able to say anything I want about women’s tits,” Manfred yells when confronted with the idea that women want to be seen as people.

This is all in good fun, of course, but the parody does a great job of driving home how ridiculous many of the “men’s rights” grievances are when contrasted with simple requests on the part of women for equality and bodily autonomy.

The total control exerted over women’s reproductive and personal lives in The Handmaid’s Tale, a fictional dystopia, feels more creepily real than the idea that we will ever be able to drag men off to jail for cracking sexist jokes. And there’s where this stops being funny. Still, comedy is often the best medium to expose the ridiculous cracks in the systems that we labor under, and I would gladly tune into The Handman’s Tale weekly on dudehulu.

(via Nerdist, image: screengrab)

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Kaila Hale-Stern
Kaila Hale-Stern (she/her) is a content director, editor, and writer who has been working in digital media for more than fifteen years. She started at TMS in 2016. She loves to write about TV—especially science fiction, fantasy, and mystery shows—and movies, with an emphasis on Marvel. Talk to her about fandom, queer representation, and Captain Kirk. Kaila has written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.