Alias Grace Review: Another Harrowing Adaptation of a Margaret Atwood Novel 5/5


“I’d rather be a murderess than a murderer if those are the only choices”

Alizay Rizvi, Social Media Manager/Circulation Manager

In response to Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, Netflix comes in association with Margaret Atwood, Alias Grace. A psychological thriller that almost parallel’s that of The Handmaid’s Tale, only that the parallel is perhaps something far worse. Instead of delving into a dystopian future, Alias Grace warps back in time to the 1800s, when pilgrims first arrived. Surrounding aspects of rebellion, penitentiaries, and feminism, Alias Grace is one that takes a turn that one would not believe.


It begins with Grace Marks, played by Sarah Gadon, who is known to be a famous murderess in the Kingston Penitentiary. Known to have killed two people alongside fellow servant James McDermott, played by Kerr Logan, the entire show revolves around the idea of whether or not she is truly guilty. To do so, they bring in a psychologist, Dr. Simon Jordan, played by Edward Holcroft, to figure out exactly what happened and whether or not her memory of it all is entirely intact.


The show soon becomes a game of cat and mouse, trying desperately to grab at what happened that it soon becomes an obsession. Throughout the show, you learn more about Grace’s memory of it all and perhaps even going so far as to debate her sanity. Inputting in great details of the characteristics of females and childbirth, the show tears apart those ideologies by having the woman die because of the very thing they were designed to bear. Not only that but the idea of a woman not just being able to kill, but driving someone mad enough to is truly an insatiable topic throughout the show.


Sarah Gadon does an incredible job of portraying someone who could all in all be insane and one would never know it. Her acting and vocals throughout the show are that which are entirely mesmerizing. Alongside that, Edward Holcroft does a favorable job of playing the role of an obsessed man. His position as a doctor and that of a psychologist is portrayed very well, and he truly falls into that role. Even Kerr Logan does an incredulous job of portraying a man who is ever tempted and is willing to do anything, even kill over lust.


A truly mystifying show, consisting entirely of six episodes total, forty minutes each, this show is one that will keep you on edge forever. Upon beginning, one will find that they have this ever need to reach the end and find out what happens next. Keeping people hooked is something that Margaret Atwood seemingly does very well and this show is a beginning example of that. This show is something that will stay forevermore.