Season 3 of the critically acclaimed show finds June returning to Gilead to retrieve her daughter. (Illustration by Kell Kitsch, Deakin University)

Season 2 of “The Handmaid’s Tale” ended in a burst of flames. Literally. An underground rebellion of Marthas set a house ablaze as a distraction in order to help June (Elisabeth Moss) escape the Republic of Gilead.

However, after handing baby Nichole to another handmaid, who was also fleeing Gilead, June turned around and marched right back into the fire. The cliffhanger left fans frustrated at June’s decision to go back, yet everyone knew she wouldn’t leave without her daughter, Hannah.

With June heading back into the authoritarian, theocratic regime of Gilead, where does this leave the brave handmaid in the upcoming season? Will she save Hannah or will she do what Elisabeth Moss hopes for her character and “go back and f— some s— up.”

Season 3: Trailer Breakdown

On Feb. 3, Hulu released the first trailer for Season 3 of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” which revealed a glimpse at what’s to come for June when the streaming service’s adaption of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel continues. In the clip, June and other appear on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., leading what appears to be an enormous army of handmaids.

In the second trailer, which was released after the 45-second ad during Super Bowl Sunday, June narrates her journey, chronicling everything that has transpired thus far. “I was asleep before, that’s how we let it happen,” she says, remembering moments of the bloodshed to come. “When they slaughtered Congress, we didn’t wake up. When they blamed terrorists and suspended the Constitution, we didn’t wake up then either. Now I’m awake.”

As the trailer ends, June is seen standing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial before an enormous crowd of handmaids, saying, “They should have never given us uniforms if they didn’t want us to be an army.”

The trailer invokes Ronald Reagan’s 1984 “Morning in America” political campaign commercial, which inspires and creatively sets up the storyline for Season 3. The upcoming season features themes of optimism, hope and a rebellion where the characters take a stand against the oppressive Gilead. The first sneak peek into Season 3 shows the daring handmaid, June, sharing a bold call to action for America, now Gilead, to “wake up.”

According to Hulu, Season 3 will be “driven by June’s resistance to the dystopian regime of Gilead and her struggle to strike back against overwhelming odds. Startling reunions, betrayals and a journey to the terrifying heart of Gilead force all characters to take a stand, guided by one defiant prayer: ‘Blessed be the fight.’”

What to Expect

Ending on a number of cliffhangers, Season 2 of “The Handmaid’s Tale” showed that life in Gilead was beginning to unravel. This means there are a lot of holes to fill in, followed by many more to come.

What’s known for sure is that June will be fighting back. According to the show’s creator, Bruce Miller, Season 3 is going to be “a lot more rebellious, outwardly rebellious than Seasons 1 and 2.” June has been through the ringer, and now it’s time for her to return the favor.

The only difference this time is that June is returning to Gilead by choice, instead of by force. “That’s a huge, powerful choice,” said Miller. “What changes in your psychology when you’ve chosen to be in a place like that and you’ve chosen to stay on the inside and fight as opposed to go to the outside? I think that’s a very different psychology, so that’s been very interesting.”

Nick (Max Minghella) has officially taken a stance against the commander, Fred (Joseph Fiennes), by helping June escape with their baby, gun in hand. As an Eye, he has all the dirt on Fred and his dealings, which means their struggle will continue in Season 3.

For sure, Rita (Amanda Brugel) is in BIG trouble, given that she and her band of rogue Marthas plotted and assisted the handmaid in escaping Gilead. Although she’s the commander’s Martha, Rita is going to have to get creative to avoid punishment for her involvement in freeing June. Will she survive this season, or is this it for Rita?

Tossing aside the handmaid’s signature garb, June was seen donning the traditional gray attire worn by the Marthas, while marching alongside the other servants. Is she infiltrating Gilead as a Martha? Fans are aware she’ll be fighting back, but how? Given the trailer’s revelations, fans know June will eventually return to wearing the red cloak again, but will she be able to sneak by unnoticed or will she be captured yet again?

And while Emily (Alexis Bledel) tried her damnedest to end Aunt Lydia (Ann Dowd), the stabbing and the fall alone could not take her out. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, Aunt Lydia will be back with a renewed interest in keeping the handmaids in line and from trying to kill her. Those poor Unwomen don’t know what they’re in for.

Speaking of Emily, she and her baby’s story have only begun. Both of them will play a large roll in Season 3, seeing as how the Guardians and everyone else will be hunting down the Waterford baby. Here’s to hoping that Emily made it over the Canadian border with her child.

A New Book in the Works

It was recently announced that Margaret Atwood, author of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” is writing the book’s sequel. The book is set to be release September 2019, titled “The Testaments” and takes place 15 years after the original story.

Atwood’s new book, which she announced on Twitter, will be narrated by three female characters and is inspired in part by “the world we live in.”

Season 3 of “The Handmaid’s Tale” will be available to stream June 5.

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