Is it only me or is there a weird obsession with tea in The Handmaid's Tale?

If the show was happening in the UK, I could understand them drinking tea all the time, but it's happening in the US (well geographically). I don't remember anyone drinking coffee in the show, and everyone constantly drinks tea.

Is this a symbol of something? Is there no coffee left due to environmental issues?

1 Answer 1


It's a symbol of religious oppresion. Handmaids are not allowed to keep uneaten food and consume "stimulants" like coffe, nicotine and alcohol.

In Season 1, Episode 3 we have a "flashback" to Coffeshop scene

Many people assumed that they really didn't have any money. But by the clerk's reaction, it was more of his own decision to not sell them any. Not only as a sign of having the ability to deny the service to women, but also to make them more docile.

  • 2
    My question was not limited to the handmaids, this is the case for everyone, other women and even the commanders. Everyone drinks tea and I don't remember seeing anyone drinking coffee.
    – NEO
    Commented Sep 4, 2020 at 11:44

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .