When one thinks about themes for birthday parties, they usually think about something fun. For kids, that might be superheroes or a favorite cartoon. For grownups, maybe it's a nice casino night, or a Taco Tuesday theme, or really anything that would foster a good time celebrating the human who managed to evade death for one more year. Yet, when it came time for Kylie Jenner to throw a birthday party for a friend, she took a different and somewhat disturbing approach with a The Handmaid's Tale-themed celebration.
Glimpses of the party were shared on Snapchat revealing the detail and length Jenner went to create a Gilead-esque setting, complete with not just red handmaiden costumes for the guests, but with others in gray-toned servant costumes welcoming the guests with a chilling "praise be". The Party, which celebrated not only Anastasia Karanikolaou's birthday but the season three premiere of the Hulu series, also included Gilead-themed decor inside the house and themed drinks, such as "Praise Be vodka" and "Under His Eyes tequila".
Predictably, the internet wasn't exactly thrilled with Jenner's party theme. The Handmaid's Tale, based on the Margaret Atwood novel of the same name, tells a chilling story of a patriarchal former United States -- now known as Gilead -- in which women are stripped of their rights and, as fertility rates have plummeted, women who are still able to bear children are forced into sexual servitude to the elite -- read: ritually raped -- in order to bear children for those in power. The series stars Elisabeth Moss as the show's central character, a Handmaid whose real name is June.
Given the current political climate with recent waves of abortion legislation in several states as well as Jenner's own wealthy status, the theme was seen by many as being very tone deaf, with some noting that it was as if Jenner didn't understand the themes and messages in the popular Hulu series.
Jenner's party theme isn't the first time something with a questionable The Handmaid's Tale theme has made headlines. Last fall, costume distributor Yandy debuted a "Brave Red Maiden Costume" that offered a "sexy" take on the look. The costume faced almost immediate backlash, prompting Yandy to pull the costume and issue a statement.
"Yandy always has stood, and will continue to stand, at the forefront of encouraging our customers to 'Own Your Sexy,'" the company's statement on Twitter read. "We support our customers being comfortable in their skin, regardless of who they are or what they choose to wear. Our corporate ideology is rooted in female empowerment, and gender empowerment overall."
It continued, "Over the last few hours, it has become obvious that our [costume] is being seen as a symbol of women's oppression, rather than an expression of women's empowerment. This is unfortunate, as it was not our intention on any level. Our initial inspiration to create the piece was through witnessing its use in recent months as a powerful protest image."
"Given the sincere, heartfelt response, supported by numerous personal stories we've received, we are removing the costume from our site," Yandy noted at the time.
What do you think about Jenner's The Handmaid's Tale party theme? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
[ H/T: The Mary Sue ]