Before 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 3 premieres, here's a look at Gilead's villains and where they stand

Before 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 3 premieres, here's a look at Gilead's villains and where they stand

'The Handmaid's Tale' season 3 premiere is almost here and we cannot wait to see Offred's (Elisabeth Moss) elaborate plan of rebellion take form in the upcoming season. Elaborate because she might be joining hands with one of the biggest villains in Gilead we have seen so far, Serena Joy (Yvonne Strahovski).

She is Commander Fred Waterford's (Joseph Fiennes) wife and has recently come to terms with the fact that her husband will never treat her like he did in the free world and neither will Gilead be a safe space for her just born daughter Nichole (named Holly by Offred). This probable collaboration got us thinking about the other villains in Gilead and what they are up to. What part will they play in the rebellion?

A still of Serena Joy in 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 2. (Source: Hulu)

Take Fred Waterford for instance. He rules Gilead and with the help of his wife, he upheld the philosophy of the dystopian country. He even raped his handmaid, Offred, who was in her third trimester with the help of his wife Serena. The couple's excuse was the necessity to induce labor.

Commander Waterford is so far gone when it comes to believing in the doctrines of the world he helped create, he had no qualms about punishing his wife for wrongdoing. The episode which featured this instance also gave us an insight into how Fred and Serena lived before Gilead and it is quite different.



Despite Serena being a conservative cultural activist who authored the book 'A Woman's Place', her relationship with her husband was on an equal footing. In Gilead, the balance is now shaken and Fred is not interested in Serena's opinions, but only her discipline. This difference caused the beginning of discord in their relationship and is also expected to be the reason for Gilead and in turn, the commander's fall from his seat of power. 

A still of Commander Fred Waterford with his newborn baby in 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 2. (Source: Hulu)

Next, we have Aunt Lydia (Ann Dowd). She is in charge of the handmaids' re-education and indoctrination. Aunt Lydia is an interesting character in the show because she believes in the doctrines of Gilead wholeheartedly, unlike Waterford, who is only keeping up with the doctrines to ensure a better tomorrow in the face of a disaster.


Her belief is also what makes her dangerous, not politically, but she can definitely hurt Offred's chances at a successful rebellion. At the end of 'The Handmaid's Tale' season 2, we saw Aunt Lydia being attacked by Emily (Alexis Bledel) at Commander Lawrence's residence. The fall down the stairs left fans wondering if the matron of the handmaids was dead.

The trailer of the show, however, featured Aunt Lydia with bruises, but alive. So one will expect her to be one of Offred's biggest hurdles in bringing the handmaids together. However, we have already seen the army Offred helped raise, so will Aunt Lydia side with Offred or be beaten by her? 

Fred Waterford, Serena Joy and Aunt Lydia will be power players in the upcoming season and their character arcs will decide the direction of each episode. Yes, there are smaller villains in Gilead; for instance, Commander Pryce, who tried to take over as the ruler of Gilead when Waterford was hurt in a blast in season 2, or Commander Putnam and his wife. However, they are small fish! So, how will 'The Handmaid's Tale' begin its rebellion? We will have to wait till June 5 for the premiere of the all-new season on Hulu. 


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