The Handmaid’s Tale season 3, episode 4 recap: God Bless The Child


The Handmaid’s Tale reveals a big secret shared by Serena and June–to members of Gilead. Uh oh.

The Handmaid’s Tale never ceases to amaze and surprise us with unexpected twists and turns. Just when we think the story is hitting a slow point or getting a bit mundane, something happens to change the whole dynamic and vibe of the series. Something like that happens in this week’s episode, but we’ll get into that in just a bit.

There is an interesting series of scene comparisons that take place in this episode of The Handmaid’s Tale that goes back and forth between the day of Hannah’s baptism and a ceremony being in held in Gilead for its children. It’s frightening to see how one can make you feel happy while the other instigates feelings of fear and anger.

I would like to point that with every passing episode and season, June has become more and more relentless and fearless. For example, she struts around Gilead as if its nothing, often with no consequence and it’s rather impressive. But the most interesting part here is that she talks to Serena and Commander Waterford with no hesitation or fear because she is no longer their handmaid. They can still hurt her, but they longer own her.

Credit: Hulu

At the Putnam house, later in the episode, we see an interesting yet unexpected act of kindness from Mrs. Putnam. Janine spots her baby and has a sudden desire to hold her, and Mrs. Putnam allows it. It’s nice to see some of these guys act humanely every once in a while, isn’t it?

Of course, seeing her baby sparks a passion inside of Janine who begins to beg that the Putnams allow her to be their handmaid again. She just wants to be near her baby, but before she can continue pleading, Aunt Lydia steps in to give her a beating. June interferes, however, and tells Aunt Lydia to stop. I’m surprised that Lydia didn’t punish June for this behavior, but it’s clear that she’s beside herself and over her actions. Could these be the beginning days of Aunt Lydia’s switch to the resistance? Let’s hope so.

The Handmaid’s Tale also takes some time to reflect on Serena and June’s relationship thus far, which has sort of evolved in very odd ways. However, currently, June is just trying to convince Serena to join her in the resistance. She attempts to do this by talking up Serena and simultaneously, telling Commander Waterford that if he wants to be back in his wife’s good graces, he should give her more power. Interesting, very interesting.

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There’s some friction between Serena and June when Serena opts to sympathize with Mrs. Putnam over Janine. But it’s soon forgotten when Serena tells June about a young girl around the same age as Hannah who will be attending school soon and drops some hints as to where this will be. At least that’s something, right?

My favorite part of this The Handmaid’s Tale episode took place outside of Gilead. The real deal was in Canada as Emily reunited with her wife and her son. It was so incredibly heartwarming to see that Sylvia had ensured that their son knew who Emily was. In fact, their son was eager to see her again and prepared for her return. How sweet is that?

And then that scene with Emily reading to Oliver, and then breaking down along with Sylvia as Oliver takes the book and begins reading it instead. It was all the feels and I’m still thinking about it. This is most definitely one of the strongest moments of the third season so far which has been a bit slower and uneventful so far.

As the episode came to a close, a huge reveal is dropped on us and it goes something like this. June is called in by Serena and Fred who are looking at some footage that has their attention. When June is asked to look at it, we realize that it’s Luke at a protest playing with Nichole. Oye vaye! When asked to confirm who the man is and confirm his name, June has no option but to answer honestly.

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The look on Serena’s face says it all as she repeatedly watches Nichole on the screen, but I’m not entirely sure if she’s scared or just happy to see the baby. All I know is that I’m scared for what’s coming and whether or not Gilead can actually bring Nichole back from Canada. Let’s hope there are some laws in place to prevent that from happening, but only time will tell.

New episodes of The Handmaid’s Tale premiere every Wednesday on Hulu!