Season two of The Handmaid's Tale picks up exactly where the first season left off, so it’s worth reminding yourselves exactly what everyone was up to when the Emmy Award-winning series left us with one mother of a cliff-hanger. Of course, you can blame Margaret Atwood for that, since she ended the original novel at exactly the same point and the upcoming season continues the story beyond the page.
We’ve put together a reminder of where we left the main players dangling. Not literally, although in Gilead, that’s always a possibility.
Offred/June (Elisabeth Moss)
Escorted from the Waterfords’ and bundled into the back of a van, Offred had no idea where she was going, but it’s possible she was being taken to face the music for prompting a rebellion among the Handmaids following her refusal to stone Janine to death. On her way out the door, she managed to let the family’s Martha, Ruth (Amanda Brugel), know where she’d stashed the bundle of letters written by victims of the regime with which she’d been entrusted – just in case she wasn’t coming back.
Nick (Max Minghella)
Before the Eyes came for Offred, her probable baby daddy whispered in her ear, “Just go with them. Trust me.” Is Max going to provide safe passage out of Gilead for his lover or will he betray her to prove his ultimate loyalty to the republic?
The Waterfords (Yvonne Strahovski and Joseph Fiennes)
On the one hand, Serena Joy was pleased her ploy to have Offred impregnated by the chauffeur worked out; on the other, she was less than impressed that husband Fred had been whisking the Handmaid off to the local brothel for non-Ceremony hanky-panky – and let the Commander know it. To ensure the safety of her future child, Serena allowed Offred a glimpse of her very much alive daughter, Hannah (Jordana Blake), promising she'd be safe if Offred's pregnancy went smoothly.
Luke (OT Fagbenle) and Moira (Samira Wiley)
Having failed to get out of Gilead once before, Moira finally managed to cross the border to Canada, where she was greeted by June’s husband, Luke. Part of a growing community of refugees, the friends will surely be intent on rescuing June. But how?
Emily (Alexis Bledel)
The last time we saw Ofglen (aka Ofsteven, aka Emily), she was also being pushed into the back of a black van, having just mowed down an Eye when she jumped behind the wheel of a car. She's already undergone female genital mutilation and watched as her lover, a Martha, was hanged, so there’s surely nothing worse that can happen to Emily, right? Don’t be so sure of that…
Janine (Madeline Brewer)
The one-eyed Handmaid was slated for execution following that whole messy incident with her Commander and the baby she bore him and his Wife, which ended with Janine having to be talked down off a bridge by Offred. Will the powers-that-be just find another way to terminate Janine or does an even worse fate await her?
Aunt Lydia (Ann Dowd)
With a full-scale uprising on her hands, the viciously pious Aunt promised there would be consequences. And boy, are there.
Season 2 of The Handmaid’s Tale is streaming now at SBS On Demand: