In 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 3 episode 5, Serena Joy's (Yvonne Strahovski) decision to joing hands with her husband was a twist that we hoped hadn't happened. Serena wasn't trustworthy, but after she helped June Osborne (Elisabeth Moss)with Nichole's escape, we saw a potential in her. She could have turned out to be a great ally of June if things had worked out as planned, but they didn't.
This made us wonder, is this only about the baby? Are her decisions solely influenced by her need to be with Nichole? We did see how moved she was when she met Nichole in Canada and it definitely changed her mind about what was best for Nichole. If I were to say, however, that it was June who influenced Serena to go in this direction, would you agree?
Let us go back to the time when June played the peacemaker between Serena and Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes). If you can recall the exact moment which had Serena side with June, it was when June suggested that she "wear the dress, pull the strings."
Serena is smart and she helped Fred with reformation in Gilead, but she has to take the backseat because she is a woman whose place is beside her husband while she takes care of her home.
That was the world that she helped create, and at the end of the second season, that was the world she didn't want Nichole to be a part of. What if joining Fred is merely an opportunity for her?
At the end of episode 5, Serena sat down with Fred for a broadcast where the two claimed that a criminal of Gilead had kidnapped their child and escaped to Canada. They pose as heartbroken parents and 'request' Canada to help them in returning their baby because she belongs to Gilead.
It may seem like Fred is trying to appease his wife by doing this, but it is all a political plot that puts Nichole and her caretaker Luke Bankole (O-T Fagbenle) on the spot. Why would a mother, who repeatedly claims that she did everything for her daughter, put her in the middle of a political tug-of-war?
It seems more like Serena has finally found a way to keep Nichole by her side in a world worthy of her. That is, if Serena were to take centre stage in Gilead and attain the power that her husband currently holds, she could change Gilead to suit her and be with her daughter.
The teaser of the upcoming episode which dropped on June 24 on the official Instagram handle also shows Serena going along with everything Fred has planned in an attempt to get their daughter back to where she belongs, something that only emphasizes what Serena really has going on in her mind.