#FridayFeminist: Madeline Brewer
“Everything that happens to the handmaids,...what happens to every person, the priests hanging on the wall, and the gender-traders. That’s all stuff that has happened in the world, none of that was fictionalized. That’s stuff that’s happened to someone somewhere in the world under the power of someone else”.
Our birthday girl, Madeline Brewer, makes no bones about the roles she chooses for herself. All the characters she plays are strong yet vulnerable ones, and you’d be hard-pressed to recognize her as most of them.
Take for example the Handmaid’s Tale. Madeline plays Janine, a tortured handmaid cruelly mutilated after standing up for herself, her eye was taken out for saying “fuck you” to Aunt Lydia, the misogynistic authoritarian marm, who is often armed with a cattle prod.
Janine was taken against her will to Gilead, her son was removed from her, and she has no idea where he is, she’s been sexually manipulated by her commander, and rather than give her newborn daughter to the commander and his wife, she chooses to jump from a bridge with her baby instead.
Playing Janine has to be difficult, but Madeline does it with an unmatched childlike innocence that has helped her, and the series, earn at least eight Golden Globe and Emmy awards.
“Everything that happens to the handmaids,...what happens to every person, the priests hanging on the wall, and gender-traders. That’s all stuff that has happened in the world, none of that was fictionalized. That’s stuff that's happened to someone somewhere in the world under the power of someone else”.
Madeline is also known as Tricia Miller, a reoccurring character from the first season of Orange is the New Black that aired in 2013. A drug addict, Tricia didn’t make it to the second season to serve the remaining four years of her sentence.
Tricia was Madeline’s first role that clearly showed her acting chops. Watching her in Season One, nobody would have guessed she had only graduated from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City the year before.
“When I leave this world I ain’t owin’ nobody nothing”. — Tricia
We don’t believe she did.
What has Madeline been up to lately? Well, during her isolation she’s been #ActingForACause with a version of #Hamlet and promoting it through her Twitter feed.
#ActingForACause is a charity dedicated to supporting young artists who are having financial difficulties during the stay at home order, or those directly affected by COVID-19. Madeline and many more of your favourite Hollywood actors are contributing to this cause, livestreaming plays on YouTube.
Do we need any more reasons to love her? We don’t think so, but despite that, we expect Madeline will prove us wrong and give us another one by the time her next birthday rolls around. Follow @madkbrew on Twitter.
And follow us, too. @femkemagazine