'The Handmaid's Tale 3’ episode 11 teaser shows Eleanor pulling gun on a Commander Lawrence under scrutiny as June hatches bigger escape
It is not just one handmaid and a baby this time and mind, that in itself was terribly hard. This time, she has to assure safety for as many babies as the number of muffin baskets she received in season 3, episode 10
In 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 2 finale, we saw Emily (Alexis Bledel) leave Gilead in a truck with June Osborne's (Elisabeth Moss) daughter Nichole. In season 3 of the show, June is planning to execute another escape, only this time it is going to be on a bigger scale.
It is not just one handmaid and a baby this time and mind, that in itself was terribly hard. This time, she has to assure safety for as many babies as the number of muffin baskets she received in season 3, episode 10.
She's got an assurance from Commander Lawrence (Bradley Whitford) about getting a truck because he wants his wife, Eleanor Lawrence (Julie Dretzin) on the truck. The first time around, one of the main reasons she was successful in ensuring Emily and Nichole's escape was because Commander Lawrence was a powerful man who was not under the scanner for suspicious activity.
Now, however, he has gained the attention of Commander George Winslow (Christopher Meloni) thanks to June's description of her master. Gilead doesn't treat handmaids with respect and that is essentially what June said Commander Lawrence did. This resulted in Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) raising further suspicions regarding what essentially happens in the Lawrence Household.
This also resulted in the Commander of the household being forced to take part in "The Ceremony." Something he had promised his wife he would never do. What was worse was the fact that Eleanor had to witness the entire thing.
While June was raped by Commander Waterford in the earlier season, this Ceremony is something she undergoes after accepting this is the only way out. The alternative is a death sentence, not just for her but Commander Lawrence and Eleanor as well. So the commander and his handmaid go through the ceremony despite Eleanor's strong objection.
His power in Gilead may not mean the same thing it did while Emily and Nichole escaped. He will now be under constant scrutiny, especially by Aunt Lydia (Ann Lydia) who is not convinced about the Commander and his wife's capabilities of raising a child.
She has been vocal about how strange the residence has been from the beginning and this is her chance to keep an eye on them. Above this, there is also the fact that Eleanor is not in the right frame of mind to go through more pressure.
For instance, after the Ceremony takes place and once the Waterfords, Commander Winslow and Aunt Lydia leave, Commander Lawrence hands over a sheet of contraceptive pills to June. She observes how this might not be the last time that the two are forced to go through something like this.
This would also mean putting Eleanor under more pressure while she is not on her mood stabilizers. Which then also explains why Eleanor would point a gun at her own husband in the upcoming episode of the show, as revealed in a clip on Instagram July 29.
Above and beyond all this is the real struggle of getting the Marthas on board. Sure, they did say yes initially, by signaling through the muffins but a plan involves many more steps. Particularly when it comes to someone like June who has always had the spotlight since the beginning.
She has to be vetted by a Martha, who will try to gauge if her intentions are above reproach from the looks of it. There are many obstacles in June's path and she has to cross it all, and stay under the radar of the high commanders while doing so. We will have to wait and see how she manages to pull this one off and what the collateral damage will be.
'The Handmaid's Tale' season 3 episode 11 will air Wednesday, August 31, on Hulu.