This is the story of an effort to sell table wine based on one of the most tragic and disturbing shows on TV.
We are sorry there is so much pain in this story. We are sorry it is in fragments. We have tried to put some of the good tweets in as well.
"Feels like one of the most bizarre and ill-conceived product announcements of the year"
"Everything except the wings around my face is red: the colour of blood, which defines us."
- Offred, an American woman enslaved so she can be raped and impregnated by officers of the ruling patriarchy in the 1986 dystopian novel, "The Handmaid's Tale"
"Did your mother tell you what to expect tonight when you lie with him? Good. It is your duty to bear children. But also, 'Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth, for thy love is better than wine.'"
- Serena Joy informing a 15-year-old girl about her sexual duties in Hulu's wildly popular television adaptation of the "Handmaid's Tale," which concluded its second season this week.
"PEOPLE can exclusively reveal that beginning today, fans can purchase any and all of three Handmaid's Tale varietals at Lot18.com.
Naturally, Elisabeth Moss and Alexis Bledel's characters, Offred and Ofglen, both inspired reds, while Yvonne Strahovski's Serena Joy is a white."
- People Magazine, gleefully announcing a new line of "Handmaid's Tale" - branded wines at 11 a.m. on Tuesday.
"Completely stripped of her rights and freedom, Offred must rely on the one weapon she has left to stay in control - her feminine wiles. This French Pinot Noir is similarly seductive, its dark berry fruit and cassis aromatics so beguiling it seems almost forbidden to taste. But it's useless to resist the wine's smooth and appealingly earthy profile, so you may as well give in."
- The product page for a $20 bottle of "Offred Pays d'Oc Pinot Noir" on sale at Lot18.com, as of Tuesday afternoon
"'IT'S USELESS TO RESIST ... SO YOU MAY AS WELL GIVE IN.' Who the (expletive) thinks rape-themed wine is a good idea?"
- Margaret Lyons on Twitter, Tuesday at 1:46 p.m.
"Can you turn rape into marketing copy?" "Sure, you bet." "Great, it's for Handmaid's Tale wine." "Haha, love it."
- Margaret Lyons (@margeincharge) July 10, 2018
"Don't, please. No, no, no, don't. Please. Please. No, please stop. Stop! Stop! Please, stop. No, stop. Serena, no! Please! No, don't. No. Don't do this! Please, please."
- June (renamed Offred by her captors), screaming while Serena Joy holds her down to be raped by a commander in the second season of "The Handmaid's Tale."
"Sophisticated, traditional and austere describe this formidable white Bordeaux, inspired by Serena Joy. While the wine may initially come off as restrained, a few sips reveal it to be hiding layers of approachable white grapefruit and lemongrass, backed by weight and concentration."
- The product page for a $20 bottle of "Serena Joy Bordeaux Blanc Duo" on Lot18.com, as of Tuesday afternoon
"No. No. No. No. Just no. No."
- Allison Shoemaker writing for The Takeout, Tuesday 1:49 p.m.
"These are the three wines to enjoy while you watch these women's stories unfold on screen, or while you contemplate their impossible situations afterward."
- The Lot18.com product page for the $60 set of all three Handmaid's Tale vintages.
(The set also includes "Ofglen Rogue Valley Cabernet," named after a rebellious slave character who is punished in the TV series by having her clitoris surgically removed.)
"The ill-conceived idea to release an official set of wines based on a show about the systemic rape and abuse of women leaves a sour taste in the mouth"
- The Guardian, Tuesday 2:21 p.m.
"Honestly, just reading about these makes us need a glass."
- Mashable.com, Tuesday 4 p.m.
Hey @huluI had some better ideas for merchandising! Handmaid's Tale the pepper spray. Handmaid's Tale the IUD. Handmaid's Tale the enormous donation to the National Network of Abortion Funds.
- Jess Zimmerman (@j_zimms) July 10, 2018
"UPDATE (8:30 p.m. ET): After further consideration, Lot18 and MGM have decided to cancel the line of wines inspired by "The Handmaid's Tale."
- People, about nine hours after the wine went on sale.
"A representative for Lot18 also confirmed to Vulture the line has been pulled"
- Vulture, that same evening.
"Creepy Handmaid's Tale wine announced, canceled within 24 hours"
- Vox, Wednesday
"Product not found."
- The error message returned on all of Lot18.com's Handmaid's Tale wine pages as of Wednesday afternoon.
"To him I'm no longer merely a usable body. To him I'm not just a boat with no cargo, a chalice with no wine in it."
- Offred in the original novel, which was written by Margaret Atwood, who could not be reached for comment about the branded table wines her story briefly inspired.