Good grief! Under his eye, and all that! The end of last week's nail-biter of an episode has left us hanging as the show is set to take us to some very unexpected places in the upcoming season finale.
Gilead devoured its most pure
The drowning suicide of Eden was startling and difficult to watch. While an annoyance to June and Nick, the death of Eden was possibly the greatest tragedy in the show to date. This poor teenage girl was raised under the oppressive rule of Gilead. She never knew of a life pre-Gilead and lived her life to the letter of the law. She believed in the social structure of Gilead and the one time she strayed, Gilead was all too happy to make an example of her and her infidelity.
Eden was offered the chance to confess her sins, but instead accepted the fate she was conditioned to believe in. The Handmaid's Tale has shown of a society that routinely fails in its duty to its citizens, but the death of Eden was maybe the step that will lead to revolution next week.
In this week's episode, the enigmatic Commander Lawrence was introduced to the show. Portrayed by Bradley Whitford (The West Wing, Get Out, Billy Madison), Lawrence is a wildcard character - what are his motivations and what impact is he likely to have on the season finale?
Emily, running out of options as the local resident wild child Handmaid, is assigned to Commander Lawrence - the man described as the 'architect of Gilead'. Emily, whose grasp on keeping it together is always on a knifes edge, is suitably freaked out by the situation, which is exacerbated by the oddity of the man. It's possible that he's actually on Emily's side and is open to a safer environment for her than she's likely to experience anywhere else in Gilead. But it's also just as possible that he may be the most sadistic of them all.
Offred is back in the house
Try as Serena might, it seems impossible to keep Offred/June out of the Waterford house. With difficulty feeding baby Nicole, Aunt Lydia and Fred create a pathway for Offred to return. It's emotionally difficult for all of them, but when Eden meets her end, it feels like the time has come for this arrangement to come to a screeching halt.
Tune in for the season finale of The Handmaid's Tale this Thursday night on SBS at 8:30pm. But if you need to watch it sooner, you can find it at SBS On Demand from 5pm.
We'd recommend a sneaky rewatch of this week's episode before going into the final episode now at SBS On Demand:
We have just watched episode 12, which is called "Postpartum". June becomes Offred once more, and negotiates access to Holly. Nick (yes, he's back!) is rocked by Gilead’s brutal response to a crime. Emily is assigned to a mysterious new house. We meet a new character, and we say goodbye to another one in very dramatic circumstances, and yes, those circumstances bring with them another Gilead ritual. We also have some very big news about an upcoming guest on our show.