THE ACTOR | Elisabeth Moss

THE SHOW | The story of the maid

THE CONSEQUENCE | “The crossroad” (April 27, 2021)

THE PERFORMANCE | Just as we think we’ve seen June Osborne’s low point, the Hulu drama shows us just how much more terrifying things can get. That is, how awesome was Moss in the very harrowing episode 3?

Let’s put aside for a moment the fact that the breathtaking hour was her directorial debut as well – a task well done in itself. But we can’t stop thinking about Moss’ performance, especially in the scenes where June dines with Commander Lawrence and then is thrown into a room with her daughter Hannah, who has been kept away from her for years.

Opposite Bradley Whitford’s Lawrence, Moss made June defiant and angry and refused to give up the location of the fugitive maids, regardless of the cost. She looked at him from the end of a long table and ripped him off with June’s evil look. Long before June told her ex-commanding officer exactly what to do to himself, her body language indicated her utter lack of desire to aid the investigation: it was as if all of her hatred for Gilead was a focused laser beam aimed solely at him was.

When June was unexpectedly brought to Hannah’s home, the shock that her daughter was afraid of her gave Moss the opportunity to cause a sudden change in her character. In a word: devastating. The Emmy winner took June from persistent to obliterated, barely able to stifle a word or two between her tears. Moss surrendered completely to June’s devastation, and while we wished she hadn’t been made to confess the maid’s position, Moss helped us understand all of why she did it.

AWARD | Patrick Murney has been a terrible presence on HBO’s Mare of Easttown as Erin McMenamin’s quick-tempered father Kenny. But this week that terrible side of grief gave way to when Kenny learned that his daughter had been found dead. Murney thrashed around like a caged animal when an angry Kenny had to be held back by the cops and released a primal scream that also served as an explanation: “This is my daughter!” This is my daughter! ā€¯After calming down, Murney spoke with terrifying precision as Kenny proclaimed his certainty that Erin’s ex Dylan had killed her. And he followed that certainty, and Murney reached for a strong vengeance as Kenny methodically did Dylan chased and shot him in cold blood, perhaps an unforgivable act, but also an understandable one, thanks to the vivid depth and shade that brought Murney to Kenny’s grief.

AWARD | The penultimate episode of Shadow and Bones first season pulled the layers all the way back onto Kirigan (played by Ben Barnes) and revealed how the Darkling created the crease in the first place. In the hour when Barnes wavered between the flashbacks of the much younger Shadow Summoner fighting to protect the Grisha and the stone, power-hungry villain we know today, he took advantage of the various nuances of his tormented character and delivered a truly outstanding performance . Whether serving anger on a large scale or keeping it calm and creepy through targeted exchanges with Alina, Barnes stood out for capturing the spirit of the book character while adding his own natural charm. He understood the task and passed with flying colors.

McKenna-Grace-the-Handmaids-Tale-Season-4-PerformanceAWARD | McKenna Grace is 14 years old. We’re bringing the point because after she casually ruined the Handmaid’s Tale audience with her portrayal of the traumatized child bride Esther Keyes, it’s really easy to forget that she’s not much older. In the season premiere, Grace’s appearance – especially her haunted retelling of Esther’s repeated rapes – hurt us. She balanced moments of supernatural gravitas with childish acting (like that scene with Janine eating), all underpinned by Esther’s burgeoning bloodlust for the men of Gilead. Such a complex character played by such an acting prodigy – we look forward to Esther’s return later.

Which performance (s) knocked your socks off this week? Tell us in the comments!