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ElectricBoogaloo

S02.E04: Other Women

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17 minutes ago, goodbyeglittergirl said:

When I married my husband, I did so with the knowledge that I was taking a risk. That he could get sick, that we could live in poverty, that any number of things could happen to change our lives from what they were when we married to something else. But that's why they are marriage vows - you are promising the other person something, that you will stick together no matter what and that you are joining your lives together. Your description of what marriage is is EXACTLY what most people see it as today, but it's not what it's supposed to be. It's supposed to be a vow, a promise, a sacred commitment.  (And now, before the mods step in, I will extract myself b/c I know we're getting off topic. Sorry!)

 

 All I will say is that my personal view of marriage is not a modern concept, just a realistic one. I will agree to disagree about what marriage is or isn’t or should be or how someone should approach either staying in one or not. 

 

12 minutes ago, chaifan said:

What if the Commander is part of Mayday?  What if he was the one who orchestrated June's initial escape?  Maybe that's why he's eager to go "up north" (I wasn't sure if that was a reference to actually being in Canada or just near the border).  Maybe that's why he convinced Serena to keep June at the house.

 

I'll admit, the thought is a little far fetched, but it is possible for the story line to go in that direction with the bread crumbs they've been leaving.

 

 Personally I would become highly annoyed if they took that route.

 

I do not need him to be a secret good guy, especially since he is one of the main figures that triggered this whole thing. An undercover agent is one thing, but the Commander has done things so despicable and unforgivable I don’t think he could be redeemed enough to be believable as one of the good guys at this point. 

 

 In my eyes he’s been way too indulgent in all the horrifically cruel and sick perks that the regime of Gilead enjoy. Maiming women, raping women, visiting the sex club to get his jollies whenever he feels like it, breaking the rules that he himself made because he knows he can get away with it, hurting his wife on a regular basis without really caring, I think it’s just too much to think that underneath all of that there is a man trying to save anyone. 

 

Some TV show characters appear to be destined to die and my fingers are crossed that he is one, heh. 

 

 I think the Commander is still infatuated with June. He’s furious with her that she ran away, making him look weak to the others, and Serena found out about their affair, but I think that he believes he can keep June now even after the baby is born, because he can convince the regime to leave her where she is and then his little sex slave is right back in his clutches. 

 

 I could easily see the Commander viewing June as a bad little girl that he must now punish, retrain, and turn back onto the path of goodness and righteousness as only he can do. And I just got sick at the thought...

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40 minutes ago, goodbyeglittergirl said:

When I married my husband, I did so with the knowledge that I was taking a risk. That he could get sick, that we could live in poverty, that any number of things could happen to change our lives from what they were when we married to something else. But that's why they are marriage vows - you are promising the other person something, that you will stick together no matter what and that you are joining your lives together. Your description of what marriage is is EXACTLY what most people see it as today, but it's not what it's supposed to be. It's supposed to be a vow, a promise, a sacred commitment. 

But why should you stay in a marriage if you aren't being treated well? If your spouse cheats on you, beats you, gaslights you, or is an ass to you in a million other ways, taking a vow doesn't mean that you should feel obligated to stay and be treated like shit for the rest of your life. That's why divorce exists, thank goodness. Life is too short to be miserable. No, you shouldn't cut and run at the first sign of less than perfect circumstances but you shouldn't have to stay if you aren't happy. Staying when you aren't happy isn't good for you, your spouse, your children, or frankly anyone that has to be in your presence. People can tell when you're miserable and it's not pleasant for anyone to be around. I know so many people who have said as adults that they wish their parents had gotten divorced instead of forcing the family to live in a toxic environment for the sake of keeping their family together.

Luke clearly did not give a shit about Annie anymore, so staying with her would have made a bad situation worse. I mean, he called her for the express purpose of yelling at her. Why would she want to be with someone like that who doesn't care about her, about treating her with respect and compassion? As I said in my previous post, I am not condoning the fact that he cheated on her. I just don't think that staying in a marriage when you are not being respectful, supportive, and loving of your spouse (or when you are not being respected, supported, and loved by your spouse) just because you took a vow is a good idea. It's okay to admit that you are no longer right for each other. Not every relationship can be salvaged/repaired/saved. Just imagine if you were still with the first person you dated or said, "I love you" to. I remember telling my first boyfriend, "I will love you FOREVER!" I meant it at the time, but thank goodness we broke up because despite all the good things, there were so many ways that we were not compatible.

It does make me wonder how long Annie and Luke knew each other before they got married though. I think sometimes when people get married too quickly, they don't really know each other very well because they're still in the hormone laden lovestruck honeymoon phase (according to scientists, that can last up to three years!).

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5 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

It does make me wonder how long Annie and Luke knew each other before they got married though. I think sometimes when people get married too quickly, they don't really know each other very well because they're still in the hormone laden lovestruck honeymoon phase (according to scientists, that can last up to three years!).

 

 I was definitely getting first love, high school sweethearts vibes from the way Annie was talking. Especially after she brought up the fact to June that she had been his first, also implying that he’d been the same for her.

 

I definitely think that they were a young couple, and as the saying goes they were young and stupid. Maturity doesn’t happen overnight, making a choice one day does not mean that it’s a good one the next.

 

The way that she viewed them at the end of the episode though, in the flashback, I wonder if infertility was also a part of the failing inner workings of their life together.  It would fit the theme of the show certainly. 

 

If Luke could get June pregnant, he was not infertile, but perhaps Annie was.

 

Perhaps she was also more religious than he was, what if she was a strong supporter of the Gilead ideal in hopes god might bless her with a child, like a modern day Hannah.  

 

I could easily see that sort of twist sending a reasonably thinking person running for the hills, if the person they thought they loved suddenly morphed into a religious fanatic, I’d say it’s a pretty good reason to haul ass and never look back. 

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8 minutes ago, AnswersWanted said:

I was definitely getting first love, high school sweethearts vibes from the way Annie was talking. Especially after she brought up the fact to June that she had been his first, also implying that he’d been the same for her.

I definitely think that they were a young couple, and as the saying goes they were young and stupid. Maturity doesn’t happen overnight, making a choice one day does not mean that it’s a good one the next.

I agree that the "I was his first" made it seem like it was a young love situation. You change and grow so much between your late teens and mid 20s because you're still figuring out who you are, what you want (out of life, as well as in a partner), etc. And as I learned from some relationships (not just romantic ones either - family relationships, friends, etc), you can really care about another person and still not be a good fit for other things. Sometimes you just rub each other the wrong way. Sometimes you can't live under the same roof. I remember the moment in college when I realized that as much as I loved my best friend, there was no way I could live with him and remain friends with him because he would drive me crazy (which was a weird thing to realize because at the time, we spent HOURS together every day and that was totally fine, but I knew that sharing a house or apartment with him when we moved off campus would cause some major issues). Same thing with the first boyfriend I ever said "I love you" to. We are still friends and he's a totally nice guy, but when I'm in town and we have dinner, I usually end up simultaneously thinking, "He's such a nice guy" and "Yup, I was right that we were not right for each other." He and his wife, on the other hand, are perfect for each other. It's not like he's a bad guy and I think "Whew, I sure dodged that bullet!" We just weren't a good fit with each other.

1 minute ago, AnswersWanted said:

If Luke could get June pregnant, he was not infertile, but perhaps Annie was.

I did wonder about that, but I thought that since they were fairly young that maybe they hadn't decided to start a family yet. I know a lot of people who wanted to wait until they'd been married a few years before starting to try to get pregnant, so I wasn't sure if that was what happened or if she hadn't been able to get pregnant.

The other possibility that crossed my mind was that I knew a woman who said that she and her husband didn't want to have kids. After about ten years together, they got divorced (amicably - they had turned into good friends more than husband/wife) and within a year he had met a younger woman and gotten married, and then the new wife got pregnant a few months after the wedding. I always wondered if the first wife said she didn't want kids and he just went along with it or vice versa or if he really didn't want kids and his second wife convinced him to do it. Or hey, maybe he really meant that he didn't want to have kids and then he changed his mind (it happens!). I didn't know the first wife very well, but I can imagine that several of those scenarios may have been very hurtful, which made me wonder what the kid situation was with Annie and Luke before June came along. She was clearly upset when she saw they had a kid so I wondered if it was because she couldn't get pregnant or if hadn't tried to get pregnant yet.

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49 minutes ago, AnswersWanted said:

<Respectfully Snipped by Me>

 

 I think the Commander is still infatuated with June. He’s furious with her that she ran away, making him look weak to the others, and Serena found out about their affair, but I think that he believes he can keep June now even after the baby is born, because he can convince the regime to leave her where she is and then his little sex slave is right back in his clutches. 

 

 I could easily see the Commander viewing June as a bad little girl that he must now punish, retrain, and turn back onto the path of goodness and righteousness as only he can do. And I just got sick at the thought...

The scene where June/Offred kneeled and pleaded to stay with the Waterfords was striking and IMO hinted at this. The staging was done quite well with the Commander, as, well, household commander, the focal point and Serena sitting to the side on the couch alternating between stony anger and exasperated eye rolling. I thought the scene also hinted that Offred made the first plea, but June emerged during the second plea as she locked eyes with the Commander and breathtalked the words with parted lips.  Although powerless in this dynamic, she nonetheless was able to manipulate him because she knows his buttons. The Commander sought Serena's reaction after Offred's first statement, but he made the decision without consultation after the second plea. The way it was filmed was almost as a romantic or seductive scene in any other show, which drove home how f-ed up the Gilead situation is. 

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1 hour ago, goodbyeglittergirl said:

No, I totally agree with you - but IMO that's why the vows are what they are. For richer, for poorer. In sickness and in health. We have no guarantee that the person we are marrying might not get cancer 2 years in, bankrupting us and leaving us widowed. But that's why they are VOWS. They are serious. They are a promise. Or they were supposed to be. They mean nothing nowadays b/c people think it's okay to leave if they are not happy, if they are not getting enough sex, if someone else makes them feel wanted, fill-in-the-blank-here whatever. 

I don't understand though, what the benefit of staying in an unfixable, unhappy marriage is? And as for nowadays-in the past marriages weren't really all that stronger or devoted then they are now. There just wasn't many options for leaving them, socially or financially, especially if you were a woman (who were mostly sold into marriage, anyway). If anything, this "sickness and health" stuff isn't meant to really be romantic, but practical. The practical side being that are forebearers were stuck regardless, so they needed to make the best of things. Romantic relationships aren't meant to be unconditional.

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13 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I agree that the "I was his first" made it seem like it was a young love situation. You change and grow so much between your late teens and mid 20s because you're still figuring out who you are, what you want (out of life, as well as in a partner), etc. And as I learned from some relationships (not just romantic ones either - family relationships, friends, etc), you can really care about another person and still not be a good fit for other things. Sometimes you just rub each other the wrong way. Sometimes you can't live under the same roof. I remember the moment in college when I realized that as much as I loved my best friend, there was no way I could live with him and remain friends with him because he would drive me crazy (which was a weird thing to realize because at the time, we spent HOURS together every day and that was totally fine, but I knew that sharing a house or apartment with him when we moved off campus would cause some major issues). Same thing with the first boyfriend I ever said "I love you" to. We are still friends and he's a totally nice guy, but when I'm in town and we have dinner, I usually end up simultaneously thinking, "He's such a nice guy" and "Yup, I was right that we were not right for each other." He and his wife, on the other hand, are perfect for each other. It's not like he's a bad guy and I think "Whew, I sure dodged that bullet!" We just weren't a good fit with each other.

I did wonder about that, but I thought that since they were fairly young that maybe they hadn't decided to start a family yet. I know a lot of people who wanted to wait until they'd been married a few years before starting to try to get pregnant, so I wasn't sure if that was what happened or if she hadn't been able to get pregnant.

The other possibility that crossed my mind was that I knew a woman who said that she and her husband didn't want to have kids. After about ten years together, they got divorced (amicably - they had turned into good friends more than husband/wife) and within a year he had met a younger woman and gotten married, and then the new wife got pregnant a few months after the wedding. I always wondered if the first wife said she didn't want kids and he just went along with it or vice versa or if he really didn't want kids and his second wife convinced him to do it. Or hey, maybe he really meant that he didn't want to have kids and then he changed his mind (it happens!). I didn't know the first wife very well, but I can imagine that several of those scenarios may have been very hurtful, which made me wonder what the kid situation was with Annie and Luke before June came along. She was clearly upset when she saw they had a kid so I wondered if it was because she couldn't get pregnant or if hadn't tried to get pregnant yet.

 

 I could definitely see them growing apart as they also grew older and as it happens Annie, right, wrong, or delusional, was still heavily invested in the relationship and Luke was not. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in a fairytale like idea of what romance is, true love, and even marriage, that it is a ceremony of destined soulmates joining together and love can conquer all, and too often there’s a reason that those words are uttered by fictional characters. 

 

I mentioned before that I think it was kinder, in a way, that he ended their marriage when he did it, though he certainly should have before he bedded anyone else, but the cheating itself really was an unavoidable sign that the love was gone for him, and staying in a loveless marriage was not good for either of them, especially for someone like an Annie. 

 

She seemed like she was willing to do whatever she had to to make him happy, and no one should ever waste their life trying to make another person happy when that isn’t possible. She was never going to fulfill Luke in the way that he now wanted or needed. The marriage had run its course.

 

That’s a good point too, that perhaps there was an arrangement about potential babies and waiting, that definitely is a conversation people have a lot more nowadays. Putting off having children in favor of careers and life goals.

 

 It harkens back to June getting a hard time from that nurse in the hospital when Hannah was sick, how the mentality of the country was changing because so few people were becoming pregnant or able to deliver a healthy baby, and the ones who could were almost being pushed, shamed, into a position of being expected to be fertile and raise babies instead of focusing on anything else going on around them., especially a mother. 

 

 It is a question that can take on so many different forms, is it really that you’re not ready for kids or you’re just not ready to have kids with this person? Is there something inside of you that you know you don’t want to have a kid with this person but if you leave them and you find someone that you feel is far more compatible, would you then change your mind? How long would it take you to realize that? How much pain are you willing to put this other person through before you come to that realization? Are you prepared for the cruel reality that you would have to face or force them to face when that day comes?

 

 It’s a very messy subject, I think the whole thing really is messy  which is why I am not quick to say that Luke was so much a worse husband to Annie as she might have been a bad wife to him, because as you said we just don’t really know what they had together, how they had it, for how long, and whether it was a situation that truly was destined to fail from the very start.  

 

After all we’re all human and there is no perfect one way to go on this ride we call life. I think that is why I will always appreciate Atwood’s take on these characters, and this world, she was never afraid to show the truth, no matter how ugly. 

 

21 minutes ago, RandomX said:

The scene where June/Offred kneeled and pleaded to stay with the Waterfords was striking and IMO hinted at this. The staging was done quite well with the Commander, as, well, household commander, the focal point and Serena sitting to the side on the couch alternating between stony anger and exasperated eye rolling. I thought the scene also hinted that Offred made the first plea, but June emerged during the second plea as she locked eyes with the Commander and breathtalked the words with parted lips.  Although powerless in this dynamic, she nonetheless was able to manipulate him because she knows his buttons. The Commander sought Serena's reaction after Offred's first statement, but he made the decision without consultation after the second plea. The way it was filmed was almost as a romantic or seductive scene in any other show, which drove home how f-ed up the Gilead situation is. 

 

That is actually something that crossed my mind as well, the way that the commander, as usual, got to play god, because that seems to be something that gets him off as much as anything else sexually.

 

He has the final say in all things. 

 

Serena can fuss and cry and wail and wring her hands and chain smoke 10 packs a day because of stress,  At the end of the day June and everyone else in that household knows that it is not the wife who matters, it is not Serena making the final decisions, it is him.

 

June was not begging for her life from Serena, she was growling at the knees of her master, the Lord and Master of the home, and as you said the way she almost kittishly asked him again with the soft, hushed “please”, it was just like they were back in his office doing secret and illegal things that made him tingle in all the right places.

 

  Honestly I see him as someone with a type of fetish or addiction, craving the rush and high he gets from having that much control over a life. That is where his true lust lies. 

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4 hours ago, mamadrama said:

I agree. At this point the audience in general is becoming so desensitized that anything less than showing some of the things that are actually going on in the world, or have in the past, just won't cut it. It makes me uncomfortable and I certainly don't "like" it, but really DO see a need for it. Shit happens, people should know about it. (But also, in the meantime, can we also have a few lighthearted moments as well? Or at least see Serena Joy get put in her place again, because that was fun.)

Oh agreed.  I have to pause watching it at places to keep going.  But even that the desensitization is part of it, as June said she was desensitized...that’s how it happened to them.  

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I think what most people have an issue with regarding Anne/Luke ( IMO at least) is not the fact that their marriage ended, it’s the fact that he decided cheating on his wife was the answer. 

Not all marriages work out. But being a coward and cheating on someone is a dick move . And it’s hurtful. I have a lot of sympathy for Annie and I’m not gonna immediately villainize her. We haven’t even seen the whole picture yet. If Luke wasn’t willing to work on his marriage that is absolutely his right, if he didn’t love her anymore than it was kinder to cut the cord and move on than to stay in an unhappy marriage. Then he should have done that immediately before he started an affair with someone else knowing his wife was still in love with him. That’s cold. And selfish. And then screaming at her over the phone on her voicemail was cowardly. At least Annie had the balls to confront June in person. We don’t know the whole situation on Annie and Luke’s marriage and I for one am not gonna immediately side with the cheaters in this situation.

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I'd like to see more of Fred's and Serena's relationship, both now and before Gilead. Regardless of what he supposedly stands for, the woman he married was ambitious, confident and assertive, and from those glimpses of their past we've seen, they seemed to be truly happy together. He loved and cared for that woman, not this miserable, voiceless, passive-aggressive shrew she's become. I think it's possible that on some level, probably even subconsciously, he resents her for giving up so easily and accepting her new role in the society without ever questionning it. We saw a bit of the old Serena back the night she organized that dinner for the Mexican ambassador, and we know how Fred responded to that, becoming sexually aroused by her for the first time in a long while. That's maybe also why he's fascinated by June, as there is still some life and fight left in her.

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21 minutes ago, GraceK said:

I think what most people have an issue with regarding Anne/Luke ( IMO at least) is not the fact that their marriage ended, it’s the fact that he decided cheating on his wife was the answer. 

Not all marriages work out. But being a coward and cheating on someone is a dick move . And it’s hurtful. I have a lot of sympathy for Annie and I’m not gonna immediately villainize her. We haven’t even seen the whole picture yet. If Luke wasn’t willing to work on his marriage that is absolutely his right, if he didn’t love her anymore than it was kinder to cut the cord and move on than to stay in an unhappy marriage. Then he should have done that immediately before he started an affair with someone else knowing his wife was still in love with him. That’s cold. And selfish. And then screaming at her over the phone on her voicemail was cowardly. At least Annie had the balls to confront June in person. We don’t know the whole situation on Annie and Luke’s marriage and I for one am not gonna immediately side with the cheaters in this situation.

 

Love can be selfish in and of itself which is why we have anti stalking laws. 

 

The reason I didn’t cheer Annie confrontating June the way she did is because it too was a cowardly move to me, it wasn’t a show of power or composure, it was a desperate, pathetic act of a woman who couldn’t get her husband on the phone anymore. Sure she was hurting and in pain, but she could’ve channeled her energy and her thoughts elsewhere, to get into a better place for herself, forgetting everything else.

 

 Taking Luke out of the picture completely, as the bad guy or not, and just addressing what she did I am not inclined to give her a pass. Does trying to hurt the mistress really solve the problem? Of course not. Figuring out how to pick up the pieces and move on was where her focus should have been, IMO. 

 

 If she could find the time to hunt June down at the gym and wait for her, she could not have done the same with Luke? Obviously if she really wanted to confront him she could’ve, the reason why not is probably why he left her that ugly message, she didn’t want to see him face to face and be reminded so coldly that things were over. 

 

By the time she went to see June, Annie had become an enemy and a threat in Luke’s eyes and in Annie’s shortsighted view Luke was not just her husband anymore but her possession, her property that she was not giving up on. They had become utterly toxic to one another, poisonous even. 

 

Quote

I don't understand though, what the benefit of staying in an unfixable, unhappy marriage is? And as for nowadays-in the past marriages weren't really all that stronger or devoted then they are now. There just wasn't many options for leaving them, socially or financially, especially if you were a woman (who were mostly sold into marriage, anyway). If anything, this "sickness and health" stuff isn't meant to really be romantic, but practical. The practical side being that are forebearers were stuck regardless, so they needed to make the best of things. Romantic relationships aren't meant to be unconditional

 

Bravo. 

Edited by AnswersWanted
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14 hours ago, Anela said:

I'm still wondering why the handmaid told her that "that part" wasn't her/June's fault. What did she blame her for? Did she know about Omar and his family? 

 

 

 

When Janine was first brought out for the handmaids to stone her, one of them (sorry, I'm horrible with names) immediately blurted out, "I'm not stoning Janine!"  She was immediately hit, and hit hard, by one of the guardians there.  That was before June/Offred stepped forward, dropped her stone, and said, "Sorry Aunt Lydia", and the others did the same.

I believe it was the first handmaid who spoke up was the one who got her tongue cut out.  So "that part" was not considered June/Offred's fault.

The rest of them having to stand out in the rain holding a stone while Aunt Lydia preached, then getting chained to the stove and their arms burned - that was blamed on June/Offred for initiating the mutiny.

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17 minutes ago, AnswersWanted said:

 

Love can be selfish in and of itself which is why we have anti stalking laws. 

 

The reason I didn’t cheer Annie confrontating June the way she did is because it too was a cowardly move to me, it wasn’t a show of power or composure, it was a desperate, pathetic act of a woman who couldn’t get her husband on the phone anymore. Sure she was hurting and in pain, but she could’ve channeled her energy and her thoughts elsewhere, to get into a better place for herself, forgetting everything else.

 

 Taking Luke out of the picture completely, as the bad guy or not, and just addressing what she did I am not inclined to give her a pass. Does trying to hurt the mistress really solve the problem? Of course not. Figuring out how to pick up the pieces and move on was where her focus should have been, IMO. 

 

 If she could find the time to hunt June down at the gym and wait for her, she could not have done the same with Luke? Obviously if she really wanted to confront him she could’ve, the reason why not is probably why he left her that ugly message, she didn’t want to see him face to face and be reminded so coldly that things were over. 

 

By the time she went to see June, Annie had become an enemy and a threat in Luke’s eyes and in Annie’s shortsighted view Luke was not just her husband anymore but her possession, her property that she was not giving up on. They had become utterly toxic to one another, poisonous even. 

 

 

Bravo. 

 

I’m not cheering her on. I just have sympathy for her. I don’t see her as a villain here. I feel like, and if I am reading this wrong please correct me, I feel like the sympathy is skewed towards Luke and June and I don’t get it. Annie may reacted badly, but what June and Luke did was wrong. I conceded to your point that Luke had every right to leave his marriage. I agreed with you that it was better to end an unhappy situation, and move on. I see nothing wrong with ending a relationship if you no longer love someone, and why stay in a marriage where love has died? I absolutely see your point there. I’m not contesting that.

What I don’t understand is why Luke and June seem to be getting a pass for their behavior. You could end a marriage and still be a decent human being to your spouse. You don’t have to humiliate them. The fact that Annie and Luke have this history together means something. Luke should have enough respect for this woman he has known for years to treat her with dignity. Exit your marriage before you start something else. Why is that so controversial? Why is it so hard to be decent? Your right, she was pathetic, and desperate, and that’s sad to me. That she was reduced to that. Why doesn’t that garner any sympathy? Why is June getting all of it? Why is it ok to cheat on your wife and knowingly date a married man?

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26 minutes ago, GraceK said:

What I don’t understand is why Luke and June seem to be getting a pass for their behavior. You could end a marriage and still be a decent human being to your spouse. You don’t have to humiliate them. The fact that Annie and Luke have this history together means something. Luke should have enough respect for this woman he has known for years to treat her with dignity. Exit your marriage before you start something else. Why is that so controversial? Why is it so hard to be decent? Your right, she was pathetic, and desperate, and that’s sad to me. That she was reduced to that. Why doesn’t that garner any sympathy? Why is June getting all of it? Why is it ok to cheat on your wife and knowingly date a married man?

I can't speak for anyone else here, but I'm not giving Luke a pass. June really isn't that much to blame, she wasn't married or owing Annie anything. I think cheating is cowardly and selfish, and am a huge advocate if you are that unhappy or tempted, put your big boy/girl panties on and break up. But, with that, I don't think that means Luke=evil asshole and Annie=innocent wife scorned. Most relationships are much more complicated then that. Outside of the cheating, I think it is pretty possible that Luke has some legitimate reasons to be unhappy and frankly, Annie didn't come off as all that stable or rational, imo, even outside of the obvious emotional fallout of cheating and the break-up of her marriage.

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Just now, HeySandyStrange said:

I can't speak for anyone else here, but I'm not giving Luke a pass. June really isn't that much to blame, she wasn't married or owing Annie anything. I think cheating is cowardly and selfish, and am a huge advocate if you are that unhappy or tempted, put your big boy/girl panties on and break up. But, with that, I don't think that means Luke=evil asshole and Annie=innocent wife scorned. Most relationships are much more complicated then that. Outside of the cheating, I think it is pretty possible that Luke has some legitimate reasons to be unhappy and frankly, Annie didn't come off as all that stable or rational, imo, even outside of the obvious emotional fallout of cheating and the break-up of her marriage.

That’s fair. This is actually a very accurate representation of my feelings to be honest 

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1 hour ago, HeySandyStrange said:

I don't understand though, what the benefit of staying in an unfixable, unhappy marriage is? And as for nowadays-in the past marriages weren't really all that stronger or devoted then they are now. There just wasn't many options for leaving them, socially or financially, especially if you were a woman (who were mostly sold into marriage, anyway). If anything, this "sickness and health" stuff isn't meant to really be romantic, but practical. The practical side being that are forebearers were stuck regardless, so they needed to make the best of things. Romantic relationships aren't meant to be unconditional.

I don't think there is, but from what I've seen all over the place, people expect someone to choose their spouse over anyone else - no matter what is happening. I have been soured to it all, due to my own experience that I mentioned last night, and meant to delete, as well as the way I've seen others go cuckoo over their hormones and another person. From what I've seen they're encouraged to do that by others. Even if a spouse dies, it's "you need to move on/find someone new". 

Those vows mean everything, to some people. If the wife was happy, I can see her not wanting to blame him if she still loves him - no matter how much I disagree with that. I don't think that June should have been blamed, he chose to cheat on his wife, chose to leave his wife, but I'm not making his ex out to be a villain, because she seems desperate. 

1 hour ago, GraceK said:

I think what most people have an issue with regarding Anne/Luke ( IMO at least) is not the fact that their marriage ended, it’s the fact that he decided cheating on his wife was the answer. 

Not all marriages work out. But being a coward and cheating on someone is a dick move . And it’s hurtful. I have a lot of sympathy for Annie and I’m not gonna immediately villainize her. We haven’t even seen the whole picture yet. If Luke wasn’t willing to work on his marriage that is absolutely his right, if he didn’t love her anymore than it was kinder to cut the cord and move on than to stay in an unhappy marriage. Then he should have done that immediately before he started an affair with someone else knowing his wife was still in love with him. That’s cold. And selfish. And then screaming at her over the phone on her voicemail was cowardly. At least Annie had the balls to confront June in person. We don’t know the whole situation on Annie and Luke’s marriage and I for one am not gonna immediately side with the cheaters in this situation.

Yep. 

48 minutes ago, deSchenke said:

When Janine was first brought out for the handmaids to stone her, one of them (sorry, I'm horrible with names) immediately blurted out, "I'm not stoning Janine!"  She was immediately hit, and hit hard, by one of the guardians there.  That was before June/Offred stepped forward, dropped her stone, and said, "Sorry Aunt Lydia", and the others did the same.

I believe it was the first handmaid who spoke up was the one who got her tongue cut out.  So "that part" was not considered June/Offred's fault.

The rest of them having to stand out in the rain holding a stone while Aunt Lydia preached, then getting chained to the stove and their arms burned - that was blamed on June/Offred for initiating the mutiny.

Thank you (and to the previous responders, too). She didn't make anyone else drop their stones, so I don't know why she's getting the blame for it.

I do hate the way they're showing women turn on each other, even though that can definitely be true to life. Serena punishes June for her husband's failings. And for what she helped to institute in the first place! Lydia controlling all of these women, although I did like her taking away the cigarette. 

34 minutes ago, GraceK said:

I’m not cheering her on. I just have sympathy for her. I don’t see her as a villain here. I feel like, and if I am reading this wrong please correct me, I feel like the sympathy is skewed towards Luke and June and I don’t get it. Annie may reacted badly, but what June and Luke did was wrong. I conceded to your point that Luke had every right to leave his marriage. I agreed with you that it was better to end an unhappy situation, and move on. I see nothing wrong with ending a relationship if you no longer love someone, and why stay in a marriage where love has died? I absolutely see your point there. I’m not contesting that.

What I don’t understand is why Luke and June seem to be getting a pass for their behavior. You could end a marriage and still be a decent human being to your spouse. You don’t have to humiliate them. The fact that Annie and Luke have this history together means something. Luke should have enough respect for this woman he has known for years to treat her with dignity. Exit your marriage before you start something else. Why is that so controversial? Why is it so hard to be decent? Your right, she was pathetic, and desperate, and that’s sad to me. That she was reduced to that. Why doesn’t that garner any sympathy? Why is June getting all of it? Why is it ok to cheat on your wife and knowingly date a married man?

Right. 

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Abusers always make you believe the horrible things they do are your fault. June feels guilty for what happened to Omar and his family because she, unlike Lydia or Serena or Fred, is a normal human being. Aunt Lydia and the others are disgusting pieces of shit with several grades of craziness. But June's feelings are wrong in this case because she isn't guilty. Not at all. Not in a million years. The stuff that was done to the other handmaids? Also not her fault. Or the Handmaids' fault. Of course I can understand why the other Handmaids would resent June. After all, they are being tortured everyday in body and mind, just like she is. From an outsider's perspective, though, I would have thought it was pretty clear who's to blame.

When Serena crawled into her bed, touched June's belly and started to talk to the baby like June wasn't even there, I totally understood why last week June didn't respect Omar's privacy and touched all his stuff. 

And no wonder she broke at the end. Going through this madness once is hard enough, but becoming yourself again, tasting freedom and sanity and then going back to this insane shit must be the worst. 

I agree that we totally need to see Lydia's backstory. I'm so curious about her life pre-Gilead! She's a true believer, that's for sure, but she isn's just repeating Gilead's propaganda and acting on it. She is to manipulation what Mozart is to music. She understood perfectly that she was in front of June and what it meant: that she needed to destroy June first and turn her into Offred, And what's exactly what she did. I doubt all the other Aunts have this instinct -or this knowledge-. I wonder if it was already there in Lydia's previous life.

I know it sounds childish but I also need to see Lydia, Serena and Fred dying terrible and painful deaths before this is over.

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2 minutes ago, Helena Dax said:

Abusers always make you believe the horrible things they do are your fault. June feels guilty for what happened to Omar and his family because she, unlike Lydia or Serena or Fred, is a normal human being. Aunt Lydia and the others are disgusting pieces of shit with several grades of craziness. But June's feelings are wrong in this case because she isn't guilty. Not at all. Not in a million years. The stuff that was done to the other handmaids? Also not her fault. Or the Handmaids' fault. Of course I can understand why the other Handmaids would resent June. After all, they are being tortured everyday in body and mind, just like she is. From an outsider's perspective, though, I would have thought it was pretty clear who's to blame.

When Serena crawled into her bed, touched June's belly and started to talk to the baby like June wasn't even there, I totally understood why last week June didn't respect Omar's privacy and touched all his stuff. 

And no wonder she broke at the end. Going through this madness once is hard enough, but becoming yourself again, tasting freedom and sanity and then going back to this insane shit must be the worst. 

I agree that we totally need to see Lydia's backstory. I'm so curious about her life pre-Gilead! She's a true believer, that's for sure, but she isn's just repeating Gilead's propaganda and acting on it. She is to manipulation what Mozart is to music. She understood perfectly that she was in front of June and what it meant: that she needed to destroy June first and turn her into Offred, And what's exactly what she did. I doubt all the other Aunts have this instinct -or this knowledge-. I wonder if it was already there in Lydia's previous life.

I know it sounds childish but I also need to see Lydia, Serena and Fred dying terrible and painful deaths before this is over.

I used to know someone online, someone strongly conservative, who thought that women should never have been given the right to vote, or any rights at all - and she was a woman. Thanks to a few comments here, about Annie, I'm wondering if she thinks she would still have her ex-husband (who cheated on her), if the other woman hadn't been free to sleep with him. This woman claimed that women were given the right to vote, and haven't been happy with anything since. I could see her being an Aunt, happily. 

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2 hours ago, GraceK said:

I’m not cheering her on. I just have sympathy for her. I don’t see her as a villain here. I feel like, and if I am reading this wrong please correct me, I feel like the sympathy is skewed towards Luke and June and I don’t get it. Annie may reacted badly, but what June and Luke did was wrong. I conceded to your point that Luke had every right to leave his marriage. I agreed with you that it was better to end an unhappy situation, and move on. I see nothing wrong with ending a relationship if you no longer love someone, and why stay in a marriage where love has died? I absolutely see your point there. I’m not contesting that.

What I don’t understand is why Luke and June seem to be getting a pass for their behavior. You could end a marriage and still be a decent human being to your spouse. You don’t have to humiliate them. The fact that Annie and Luke have this history together means something. Luke should have enough respect for this woman he has known for years to treat her with dignity. Exit your marriage before you start something else. Why is that so controversial? Why is it so hard to be decent? Your right, she was pathetic, and desperate, and that’s sad to me. That she was reduced to that. Why doesn’t that garner any sympathy? Why is June getting all of it? Why is it ok to cheat on your wife and knowingly date a married man?

 

 

 None of what happened was OK in my mind and I do not excuse the behavior of any of the three involved either. 

 Do I have sympathy for any of them? In particular not really.  I don't see anyone as being the villain, or the bad guy, just three incredibly flawed people, all with issues they were not handling well. 

 I think they all had a hand in the situation and they all should have behaved more like adults and dealt with their shit as such. 

 I don't like a cheater, full stop. 

I don't like people who think that it's OK to be the other person in a broken marriage and act as if that's not a big deal

And it is a personal pet peeve of mine for a wife to confront the other woman instead of her husband as if the other woman can somehow just magically vanish and that will fix everything.

  I am sympathetic to pain, but I am not sympathetic to stupidity or to stubbornness or to delusional desires.

 Was I irritated by their selfishness all the way around, absolutely.

Was I annoyed by their behavior, sure.

Was I disgusted by some of the things that went on regarding all three of them, no doubt about it.

But at no time did I feel sympathy for any of them because none of them earned it in my opinion.

 Being cheated on is absolutely terrible and awful and should not happen to anyone, that fact however had nothing to do with why I didn't feel sympathy for Annie.

 I was not disregarding her anger or her pain, I just wasn't excusing her because of that.  

She was still in control enough to not have done what she did and that sort of behavior will never be acceptable to me. I don't care how the situation came about, to me that's just a line you don't cross for your own sake and peace of mind.

 It was never about her being mean to "poor little June" or making "good guy Luke" freak out in honor of his new lady, but because she was embarrassing herself, humiliating herself, demeaning herself and lowering herself and for what?

 Being the jilted party in a broken marriage only gets you so much slack in my opinion. 

 If she had just come across them the night before, then most likely she might have garnered some sympathy from me, but not after months later down the road and she obviously with utilizing one of her last tricks in the bag after so long of trying to change the inevitable.

Of course ymmv. 

 Frankly, if anything really got me it was that they would use such an amazing actress for such a limited role as the ex wife of Luke.

 Even if she ends up in more scenes she's still going to be stuck as Luke's ex. 

If anyone deserved to have that woman play their wife and be front and center on the show, especially in a season that I've already half way given up on, it is Moira. 

Edited by AnswersWanted
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Well, if there's one thing this show does right, it is portray the dynmics of life and the choices we make.  Life is never black and white, it's gray all over.  And in this episode, I think they did a good job of showing that June bears responsibility for her choices.  

I thought they did a really good job with the Annie, June and Luke scenario.  I don't think Annie confronting June is a stretch.  Nor did I think that the direction that the conversation went was unrealistic.  I don't think it made Annie a bad person.  I thought it made her real.  Because confronting your husband's mistress is its very own special kind of humiliation.  And as for her statement that she was Luke's first, I simply took that as her trying to make her point.  They were two people who had loved each other once, when they were young, who have always only been together, and please step away and let them try to fix that.  And when she saw her later in the cafe, I thought that too was a normal response.  What were they going to do?  Exchange pleasantries?  Sit down and break bread?  Of course not.  But the fact is that June WAS the other woman in that marriage, and while she didn't make Luke cheat, that doesn't absolve her from the consequences of her actions.  And that means that Annie is well within her rights to quietly give them a look and walk out the door.  June chose to have an affair with a married man.  She asked that married man to leave his wife.  I don't buy the "we just fell so in love with each other and the chemistry was so intense we couldn't help ourselves" argument that the show tried to show us in season 1.  If things were that intense, if they had to be together THAT badly, then the could have waited for Luke to do right by his wife.  

That brings me to Luke.  He was married.  He cheated on his wife.  HE is responsible for that, he is the guilty party, and Annie's anger first and foremost should be directed at him.  And he had no right to berate her like that over a phone message.  Luke and June are NOT the victims in that situation.  I don't think it's her fault.  But I do think her part was her responsibility.  

That said, I don't think Annie played a part in Luke and June getting caught, that's too much of a stretch for me.  

Aunt Lydia continues to be the most interesting and nuanced character on the show.  For some bizarre reason, I came away from the episode thinking that in some incredibly warped way Aunt Lydia DOES "love her girls."  I think she sees Serena Joy exactly for who she is.  I think she stuck around in that house not just to get June "in line" but also to make sure that everything possible was done to ensure that Serena didn't basically come right out and attack June.  And I think she likes June - just like she liked Jeannine (remember her "you stupid girl" statement sitting next to her in the hospital?) - and wants to see her live, and the only way for her to do that is to get her to toe the line.  She outright admitted that being a handmaid is awful when she described to her what happened to the breadmaker family "She will become a handmaid, her son is with a worthy family, and he's dead."  It's as close as we're going to get to Aunt Lydia saying "this isn't some blessed opportunity, it's a prison and torture sentence."  But everything Aunt Lydia does is all wrapped up in this blanket of Gilead which is awful and fucked up and misery woven together.  I don't know what to make of her.  She's absolutely loathesome and yet I want more of her.  How messed up is that?  

As for June's actions and choices in Gilead I keep getting frustrated with her.  I keep thinking that she's being careless and selfish.  And then I keep thinking, what the hell else is she supposed to do?  I think we often want our central characters to be perfect.  But June has never been presented as perfect.  She simply had HER perfect life - as imperfect as it was.  June isn't responsible for that family getting caught, we don't even know why they got caught.  It's entirely possible that they grabbed them after church for reasons unrelated to June and it all came out during interrogation.  I think her biggest fault right now is that she's getting sloppy.  The truth is that when the escape route was compromised, June SHOULD have gone her own way.  Tried to go on foot.  Traveled by night in the shadows.  But I say that with the hindsight of knowing what happened to that family.  That doesn't make what happened to them her fault.  

I need Moira to come in a slap her with a "you hold your shit together" moment because June now needs it more than ever now.

I'm so upset that Rita did absolutely NOTHING with those letters.   

Somebody remind me.  Isn't a successful handmaid promised something?  Like they get to live out life somewhere that's not the colonies, even though they re no longer able to bear children?  

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1 hour ago, Shangrilala said:

Well, if there's one thing this show does right, it is portray the dynmics of life and the choices we make.  Life is never black and white, it's gray all over.  And in this episode, I think they did a good job of showing that June bears responsibility for her choices.  

I thought they did a really good job with the Annie, June and Luke scenario.  I don't think Annie confronting June is a stretch.  Nor did I think that the direction that the conversation went was unrealistic.  I don't think it made Annie a bad person.  I thought it made her real.  Because confronting your husband's mistress is its very own special kind of humiliation.  And as for her statement that she was Luke's first, I simply took that as her trying to make her point.  They were two people who had loved each other once, when they were young, who have always only been together, and please step away and let them try to fix that.  And when she saw her later in the cafe, I thought that too was a normal response.  What were they going to do?  Exchange pleasantries?  Sit down and break bread?  Of course not.  But the fact is that June WAS the other woman in that marriage, and while she didn't make Luke cheat, that doesn't absolve her from the consequences of her actions.  And that means that Annie is well within her rights to quietly give them a look and walk out the door.  June chose to have an affair with a married man.  She asked that married man to leave his wife.  I don't buy the "we just fell so in love with each other and the chemistry was so intense we couldn't help ourselves" argument that the show tried to show us in season 1.  If things were that intense, if they had to be together THAT badly, then the could have waited for Luke to do right by his wife.  

That brings me to Luke.  He was married.  He cheated on his wife.  HE is responsible for that, he is the guilty party, and Annie's anger first and foremost should be directed at him.  And he had no right to berate her like that over a phone message.  Luke and June are NOT the victims in that situation.  I don't think it's her fault.  But I do think her part was her responsibility.  

That said, I don't think Annie played a part in Luke and June getting caught, that's too much of a stretch for me.  

Aunt Lydia continues to be the most interesting and nuanced character on the show.  For some bizarre reason, I came away from the episode thinking that in some incredibly warped way Aunt Lydia DOES "love her girls."  I think she sees Serena Joy exactly for who she is.  I think she stuck around in that house not just to get June "in line" but also to make sure that everything possible was done to ensure that Serena didn't basically come right out and attack June.  And I think she likes June - just like she liked Jeannine (remember her "you stupid girl" statement sitting next to her in the hospital?) - and wants to see her live, and the only way for her to do that is to get her to toe the line.  She outright admitted that being a handmaid is awful when she described to her what happened to the breadmaker family "She will become a handmaid, her son is with a worthy family, and he's dead."  It's as close as we're going to get to Aunt Lydia saying "this isn't some blessed opportunity, it's a prison and torture sentence."  But everything Aunt Lydia does is all wrapped up in this blanket of Gilead which is awful and fucked up and misery woven together.  I don't know what to make of her.  She's absolutely loathesome and yet I want more of her.  How messed up is that?  

As for June's actions and choices in Gilead I keep getting frustrated with her.  I keep thinking that she's being careless and selfish.  And then I keep thinking, what the hell else is she supposed to do?  I think we often want our central characters to be perfect.  But June has never been presented as perfect.  She simply had HER perfect life - as imperfect as it was.  June isn't responsible for that family getting caught, we don't even know why they got caught.  It's entirely possible that they grabbed them after church for reasons unrelated to June and it all came out during interrogation.  I think her biggest fault right now is that she's getting sloppy.  The truth is that when the escape route was compromised, June SHOULD have gone her own way.  Tried to go on foot.  Traveled by night in the shadows.  But I say that with the hindsight of knowing what happened to that family.  That doesn't make what happened to them her fault.  

I need Moira to come in a slap her with a "you hold your shit together" moment because June now needs it more than ever now.

I'm so upset that Rita did absolutely NOTHING with those letters.   

Somebody remind me.  Isn't a successful handmaid promised something?  Like they get to live out life somewhere that's not the colonies, even though they re no longer able to bear children?  

This whole post is beautiful and literally sums up everything I want to say but can’t seem to say eloquently enough. 

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Well, if there's one thing this show does right, it is portray the dynmics of life and the choices we make

 

I think the show did this better last season,  most likely because they were following the text from the book and that is one of Atwood’s specialties, she makes even the most obscene and obscure parts of reality as real as they can get.

 

However this season I just keep feeling like pieces are missing. There’s a lot more going on that has nothing to do with reality or with the established direction of Gilead.

 

I mainly see events just moving plots forward, and it is starting to irk me.  These people proved to me that they could tell a decent story, I am not seeing that so much in these first four episodes. I think this episode was not terrible but again a lot of blank space seemed to exist where it shouldn’t. 

 

1 hour ago, Shangrilala said:

I'm so upset that Rita did absolutely NOTHING with those letters.   

Somebody remind me.  Isn't a successful handmaid promised something?  Like they get to live out life somewhere that's not the colonies, even though they re no longer able to bear children?  

 

From that horrific crack across the face that Serena dished out to her, I think Rita has been the household’s punching bag, literally.

 

It would not surprise me if they thought she might have some idea where June was or who was helping her.  I can only imagine what Rita has been going through since June escaped and I think she just had to prioritize her safety over getting out those letters and risking capture, or exposing more of MayDay or the handmaids inner network trying to get out. 

 

She was getting a front row seat of what happens to those who betray the regime. Was her life worth some letters? I don’t think she really had a choice at the time honestly, June’s leaving put all of them underneath an even larger microscope. 

 

The idea pitched forth was that a handmaid whom had successfully given birth is promised their life. They won’t be sent to the colonies or declared an Unwoman.  

So their “life” is their grand reward, or as I would say a commuted life sentence is more like it. 

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9 hours ago, goodbyeglittergirl said:

No, I totally agree with you - but IMO that's why the vows are what they are. For richer, for poorer. In sickness and in health. We have no guarantee that the person we are marrying might not get cancer 2 years in, bankrupting us and leaving us widowed. But that's why they are VOWS. They are serious. They are a promise. Or they were supposed to be. They mean nothing nowadays b/c people think it's okay to leave if they are not happy, if they are not getting enough sex, if someone else makes them feel wanted, fill-in-the-blank-here whatever. 

Those might be your vows, but they aren't everyone's and they weren't mine. Not everyone views marriage as sacred. Marriage has had many different meaning in many different cultures.  I had a civil ceremony. I am not religious.  I didn't make vows to a god as I dont believe in god.  And yet we have been happy for 24 years. 

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23 minutes ago, JennyMominFL said:

Those might be your vows, but they aren't everyone's and they weren't mine. Not everyone views marriage as sacred. Marriage has had many different meaning in many different cultures.  I had a civil ceremony. I am not religious.  I didn't make vows to a god as I dont believe in god.  And yet we have been happy for 24 years. 

I don't see anything about vows to god there, just promises to each other. 

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10 hours ago, chaifan said:

What if the Commander is part of Mayday?  What if he was the one who orchestrated June's initial escape?  Maybe that's why he's eager to go "up north" (I wasn't sure if that was a reference to actually being in Canada or just near the border).  Maybe that's why he convinced Serena to keep June at the house.

 

I'll admit, the thought is a little far fetched, but it is possible for the story line to go in that direction with the bread crumbs they've been leaving.

He obviously isn't, but that doesn't mean he's not SUSPECTED of that and possibly more, like Jezebels.  I think the Commander's days of living the high life are going to end, hopefully soon, and before June's baby is born.

13 hours ago, AllyB said:

Aunt Lydia wouldn't have been allowed near her until the Commanders were satisfied they had gotten all the information they had from her. Babies are about optics in Gilead, not the true purpose of the society, the true purpose is control. Mayday presents a real threat to that control, so a chance to destroy a working arm of it is far, far more important than a single baby. If Gilead could interrogate her in a way that minimises risk to the baby, they will do that. But if she miscarries, that's just collateral damage in the far more important task of capturing everyone who helped her and hurting Mayday. She would have been held by the Eyes until she had satisfied them that she knew nothing of value (unlikely) or had given them (at least some of) the information they wanted. After that, if she was still pregnant, she would have gone to the Aunts for Aunt Lydia to start her own form of psychological torture on her.

Not really.

The baby crisis IS quite real.  The country can't continue if babies aren't born, replenishing the population.  It's not all for control, there is some basis for their actions.  No justification, but basis.

While I completely agree that many in Gilead are hypocrites and faking most of this pious crap for power?  Not all are.  Some of the Commanders really believe this shit.  Obviously The Aunts believe this shit.  The Commanders NEED the Aunts, and delivering a once pregnant housewife that had been tortured, and lost her baby, to the true believing Aunts would not work.  It would backfire in a gigantic way.

They obviously already had a mole, or someone to torture for information.  That person would have told them how compartmentalized it all was.  June could probably add next to nothing to the information pool.  Sadly, they might already even have "After a while crocodile" guy as well.  As far as what happened in the hospital?  Again, June knows nearly nothing, she followed red squares, got in a freezer truck, went to the Boston Globe.  Then again, they may already know all of that too.

Either way, Mayday is out of it smuggling handmaid's now, so I am making the logical conclusion that they suffered some pretty big hits, not just Omar and the other safe house people.

Also, since all handmaids belong only to powerful men?  Regular Guards and security wouldn't risk pissing one of those guys off by killing their baby.

Edited by Umbelina
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15 minutes ago, Anela said:

I don't see anything about vows to god there, just promises to each other. 

NO, ..BUt some view them as vows to god.No idea if you do or not. My point remains the same , Marriage means different things to different people,and different people make different vows. There is no one size fits all idea of marriage,

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1 hour ago, AnswersWanted said:

The idea pitched forth was that a handmaid whom had successfully given birth is promised their life. They won’t be sent to the colonies or declared an Unwoman.  

So their “life” is their grand reward, or as I would say a commuted life sentence is more like it. 

Is that an absolute?  What happens to handmaids who have given birth but due to age or health or whatever reason can no longer have children?  I got the impression from something said the first season that once they're no longer fertile they go to the colonies.  Or is there an Old Handmaids Home they all get sent to?

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On 10/05/2018 at 10:02 AM, oldCJ said:

I can’t deal with this show any longer. It’s just torture porn at this point. Cutting out tongues, eyes, arms. Female genital mutilation. Fingernails ripping out from radiation. If I wanted to see that I’d watch Hostel or Saw.

Are we watching in hopes that June makes it out? That Gilead falls soon?

There is no part of watching the men and women of Gilead subject these women to horrors that is enjoyable to watch. There’s no light at the end of the tunnel, especially if they want the show to last more than another season. It’s grim and bleak and physically uncomfortable to watch. While that it fine for a movie, it doesn’t make me want to tune in next week to see what disgusting and shocking thing they can think of doing to these poor rape victims.  

100% agree.... if we have to endure this fruit bowl of torture porn I hope we get thrown a juicy bone every so often....this show desperately needs it.....

Edited by BellyLaughter
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1 hour ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

It is not that June is without fault or above criticism. It is the eagerness to solely focus on her's in any given situation that I find fascinating. It is sad because this is something I have come to expect from viewers since I started posting about TV shows. I thought the audience for such a show would be less incline to fall into that tap. 

Nonetheless, it is disconcerting because that kind of collective sentiment could enable a Gilead concept into a reality. I'll explain.  Yes, June forcing Omar to take her with him is an action that led to the ruins of his family but from everything we know, should her faults be the centerpiece of these discussions? Shouldn't her circumstances be included for a total analysis of her actions? The way her voice broke when she pleaded with him to take her from her newest cell? That was was in the early stages of her pregnancy and had little human contact?  If June's actions are not excusable, what is? Tolerable? Should a woman who was chased down like a dog, whose child was literally ripped from her arms, continually raped and living in bondage while acting as a incubator to her captures be held at the same standard as an adult of sound mind and body with full agency?  Why is the desperation and total hopelessness of her circumstances that drive her action not strike a chord, but the wrongness of her actions does? Her role in the demise of Omar's family more noteworthy than anything else, becasue? 

The fact that in a situation where there are several faults, the loudest criticism is for the female victim - with little regard to her motivation or circumstances -  is divisive to the gender and leaves us more vulnerable IMO.

It being a fictional show is not a good enough reason because this conversation is part of the social discourse on the subject. Whether fictional or real life, for real change to happen, IMO we ought to be more forgiving, be a little more tolerant of faults and protective because we are vulnerable. Men like The Commander and his ilk will have a tougher time dominating our sex if weren't so hard on ourselves.

 

Yes.  Very well said.

June isn't, actually can't be, the villain of the piece as presented.  Gilead is the villain, the oppressor, the murderer.  June, and Omar and his family are the victims of that oppression.  Omar and his family already are in deadly danger, their lives threatened,  constricted and deprived because of Gilead.

Blaming June, IMHO, is akin to nodding in agreement with the abuser when he says, "Look what you made me do".

Edited by boes
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6 hours ago, chaifan said:

Is that an absolute?  What happens to handmaids who have given birth but due to age or health or whatever reason can no longer have children?  I got the impression from something said the first season that once they're no longer fertile they go to the colonies.  Or is there an Old Handmaids Home they all get sent to?

I think it was mentioned that a handmaid who’d successfully given birth would never be declared unwoman and sent to the Colonies. Assuming good behavior on their part of course. 

As for an Old Handmaids Home, Gilead hasn’t been around long enough that they’d have to deal with that yet, at least not on any large scale. It’s been what, 3 to 5 years at most. 

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I must say, it absolutely PAINS me that Joseph Fiennes is playing this part, and playing it so well. He's been on my "Freebie List" (people I'm allowed to cheat on my husband with) for more than 20 years now. I've watched everything he's been in, even the crappy stuff like RANCID ALUMINUM and THE VERY THOUGHT OF YOU. I finally, *finally* have him back on my regular screen again and he has to play a complete asshat. 

Pains me, I tell you. 

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Most chilling moment: Ofglen's mouth moving during that "ceremony" but no words coming out. The whole ritual was interesting because it was the one time we saw wives and handmaids together as relative equals.

It was funny in a dark sort of way that everyone at that baby shower was acting as though Serena were the pregnant one, like the fake labor and delivery Mrs. Putnam (I think that was her name) did last season. 

I'm not sure June is entirely faking her compliance. When she kept repeating "My fault," there was no one to hear her.

No more flashbacks to Luke and June's past life, please. We get it--they were an ordinary married couple. And I don't want to see more of life in Canada unless something interesting is going on which would explain why Fred is going there.

Did anyone else get a lesbian vibe from Serena visiting June in the night? It really felt as though she wasn't just interested in the baby. I could see her as a closeted lesbian or bisexual.

Where is Annie now? She's not really a Wife since her husband left her, and if she wasn't able to produce a baby for Luke she wouldn't be a Handmaid either. So I guess that would make her a Martha.

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20 minutes ago, GreekGeek said:

Did anyone else get a lesbian vibe from Serena visiting June in the night? It really felt as though she wasn't just interested in the baby. I could see her as a closeted lesbian or bisexual.

Not even a little bit. I think she absolutely loved her husband and she was a true believer. She was one of the orchestraters of this society. I think the reality of her actual position and the truth of what this world has become has slowly driven her crazy bit by bit and I think she feels that if she has a baby, everything will have been worth it. That somehow, having a baby will have made this truly godly on some level. That she will have been right and that the end justifies the means.

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6 hours ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

It is not that June is without fault or above criticism. It is the eagerness to solely focus on her's in any given situation that I find fascinating. It is sad because this is something I have come to expect from viewers since I started posting about TV shows. I thought the audience for such a show would be less incline to fall into that tap. 

Nonetheless, it is disconcerting because that kind of collective sentiment could enable a Gilead concept into a reality. I'll explain.  Yes, June forcing Omar to take her with him is an action that led to the ruins of his family but from everything we know, should her faults be the centerpiece of these discussions? Shouldn't her circumstances be included for a total analysis of her actions? The way her voice broke when she pleaded with him to take her from her newest cell? That was was in the early stages of her pregnancy and had little human contact?  If June's actions are not excusable, what is? Tolerable? Should a woman who was chased down like a dog, whose child was literally ripped from her arms, continually raped and living in bondage while acting as a incubator to her captures be held at the same standard as an adult of sound mind and body with full agency?  Why is the desperation and total hopelessness of her circumstances that drive her action not strike a chord, but the wrongness of her actions does? Her role in the demise of Omar's family more noteworthy than anything else, becasue? 

The fact that in a situation where there are several faults, the loudest criticism is for the female victim - with little regard to her motivation or circumstances -  is divisive to the gender and leaves us more vulnerable IMO.

It being a fictional show is not a good enough reason because this conversation is part of the social discourse on the subject. Whether fictional or real life, for real change to happen, IMO we ought to be more forgiving, be a little more tolerant of faults and protective because we are vulnerable. Men like The Commander and his ilk will have a tougher time dominating our sex if weren't so hard on ourselves.

Amen! All of this. Very well said. 

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Count me in for wanting an Aunt Lydia backstory episode. For now, I see her mostly as an unmedicated Mrs. Garrett, taking out her frustrations about the fire that destroyed Edna’s Edibles.

As far as Annie goes, I hope she finally got to order her latte. Preferably in Canada, right before she took Luke to the cleaners.

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We have not been shown enough of Luke’s marriage to Annie to possibly have an opinion of what went wrong in it. Just because people get married doesn’t mean that the marriage is good. For example, my brother married a woman who we have since come to learn has a cluster B personality, she is a violent and attacked me and my 80 something mother last weekend. My brother will probably not leave her, but if he does, no amount of “marriage is forever” nonsense should be applied to him.

 

What we do know is that Luke is not just a random hound dog, he does in  fact married June and have a baby with her, and is ready to have a second in a flashback. So what we can infer  is that there was something very wrong in his marriage to Annie, not that he was just a man with a roving eye. Frankly, if he were just a cheater with a side piece, he probably would have backed right down when his wife believe him. The fact that he stands up for June suggested she really does love June. That’s my two cents on that, anyway.

 

 .

 

Of course that doesn’t mean that she won’t feel terribly guilty about it, and feel terribly guilty about what happened to Omar even though I like others don’t think that she should feel guilty about what happened to Omar. Had Omar left he was leaving her to an almost certain death by starvation. I just can’t find it in my self to fault her for wanting to live.

 

As a Jew, I also strongly strongly disagree that people should just not make waves because other people might suffer.  Collaborators use that philosophy and justify all kinds of evil on the theory that they’re saving others. I don’t think people should be reckless, but I also think that sometimes you have to take risks and damn the consequences.

 

that said if I were June I’d probably feel exactly the way that she does.

Edited by lucindabelle
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On 5/9/2018 at 4:03 PM, Umbelina said:

When did June "expect" people to help her?  That escape was sprung on her, she wasn't expecting it, she knew NO details at all.  She was given a chance and took that chance.

What do you think powerless June is supposed to do, suggest that all the handmaids escape together? 

People who escaped from the USSR knew their families would be punished when they did, and punished severely.  So they should have just stayed put?

Slaves that escaped on the underground railroad knew that other slaves they knew would be beaten and restricted even more when they did, so they just should have STAYED THERE?

People escaping from concentration camps KNEW other prisoners would be punished for their escape.  So again, instead of trying to get out they should have just stayed there?

I honestly don't understand what you are saying, and it certainly does sound like blaming the victims here.  It's all the woman's fault for trying to save herself, for refusing to stone to death a kind and helpless women.

Wow.

She could have at least not peeked out the damn window every 15 minutes! I agree that ultimately Gilead and the system are at fault, however June could have been more careful in not endangering Omar's family.

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On 5/9/2018 at 8:17 PM, Umbelina said:

There is an epilogue at the end of the book, and following and exploring that would be wonderful for the final season. 

Based on what little I read about how Season 3 will go, I suspect (and like you hope) that that is what S3 will be ... I won't go into detail here because there is a separate thread for the book for viewers who do not want to be spoiled but that brief epilogue (which some people don't even read because they don't realize it's still part of the narrative) could absolutely support an amazing season. Some questions are unanswered and would certainly be addressed in "new" content (via Atwood and company) but others that are posited in this thread alone are very definitely answered and should make for fantastic episodes. 

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17 hours ago, JennyMominFL said:

Those might be your vows, but they aren't everyone's and they weren't mine. Not everyone views marriage as sacred. Marriage has had many different meaning in many different cultures.  I had a civil ceremony. I am not religious.  I didn't make vows to a god as I dont believe in god.  And yet we have been happy for 24 years. 

I don't think it matters whether a marriage is religious or secular, it's still a serious commitment between two people. The person who breaks that commitment in a callous manner is always in the wrong. Luke should have made a clean break from Annie before pursuing June, he owed her that much.

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1 hour ago, chocolatine said:

I don't think it matters whether a marriage is religious or secular, it's still a serious commitment between two people. The person who breaks that commitment in a callous manner is always in the wrong. Luke should have made a clean break from Annie before pursuing June, he owed her that much.

We do not know enough about their marriage to judge. 

You’re likely right but as someone with an absolutely whacko sister in law I don’t agree that the person who leaves is always wrong. And for whatever reasons abused people often do not get the courage to leave without someone else to go to. 

 

There is no ALWAYS in human relationships.

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2 hours ago, chocolatine said:I don't think it matters whether a marriage is religious or secular, it's still a serious commitment between two people. The person who breaks that commitment in a callous manner is always in the wrong. Luke should have made a clean break from Annie before pursuing June, he owed her that much.

Oh absolutely.. but different marriage have different sorts of vows . Clearly, by th reactions of Annie ,she felt her vows were violated and that is not cool

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I admit I chuckled at the scene of Luke screaming at Annie's answering machine and doing so over the speaker! It was such an intentionally dickish setup of that scene that I applaud the creators of having the guts to show Luke this way, to show his and June's affair as just that, not something hot, but rerally just tawdry meeting in mediocre hotel rooms during the day. It works better for this story than having them being paragons. Because this isn't a story about how people did everything right and didn't deserve Gilead. It's about how no one diserved Gilead.

I got Annie's original outburst, but I was surprised when I saw her later on. I even wondered if they were trying to imply she was stalking them. I hope not and that it was just by accident. Annie's appearance does bring up an interesting question about how Gilead would see her. She didn't cheat and she wanted to keep her marriage going, yet she's still not with her husband.

When Aunt Lydia pushed June's head down I really hoped there was someone cutting that hand off in her future. Screw you, Lydia. Also, I adore you, Ann Dowd.

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17 hours ago, Deputy Deputy CoS said:

It is not that June is without fault or above criticism. It is the eagerness to solely focus on her's in any given situation that I find fascinating. It is sad because this is something I have come to expect from viewers since I started posting about TV shows. I thought the audience for such a show would be less incline to fall into that tap. 

Nonetheless, it is disconcerting because that kind of collective sentiment could enable a Gilead concept into a reality. I'll explain.  Yes, June forcing Omar to take her with him is an action that led to the ruins of his family but from everything we know, should her faults be the centerpiece of these discussions? Shouldn't her circumstances be included for a total analysis of her actions? The way her voice broke when she pleaded with him to take her from her newest cell? That she was in the early stages of her pregnancy and had little human contact?  If June's actions are not excusable, what is? Tolerable? Should a woman who was chased down like a dog, whose child was literally ripped from her arms, continually raped and living in bondage while acting as a incubator for  her captures be held at the same standard as an adult of sound mind and body with full agency?  Why is the desperation and total hopelessness of her circumstances that drive her action not strike a chord, but the wrongness of her actions does? Her role in the demise of Omar's family more noteworthy than anything else, becasue? 

The fact that in a situation where there are several faults, the loudest criticism is for the female victim - with little regard to her motivation or circumstances -  is divisive to the gender and leaves us more vulnerable IMO.

It being a fictional show is not a good enough reason because this conversation is part of the social discourse on the subject. Whether fictional or real life, for real change to happen, IMO we ought to be more forgiving, be a little more tolerant of faults and protective because we are vulnerable. Men like The Commander and his ilk will have a tougher time dominating our sex if weren't so hard on ourselves.

Very well put *claps*

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On 5/10/2018 at 9:18 AM, goodbyeglittergirl said:

No, I totally agree with you - but IMO that's why the vows are what they are. For richer, for poorer. In sickness and in health. We have no guarantee that the person we are marrying might not get cancer 2 years in, bankrupting us and leaving us widowed. But that's why they are VOWS. They are serious. They are a promise. Or they were supposed to be. They mean nothing nowadays b/c people think it's okay to leave if they are not happy, if they are not getting enough sex, if someone else makes them feel wanted, fill-in-the-blank-here whatever. 

I don't think everyone takes the same marriage vows anymore. Those are the traditional vows, but many don't use them.

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50 minutes ago, DangerousMinds said:

Maybe it's true. Life is harsh.

So? I still think he's a dick. And it sounded like a line you give to the new woman. 

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On 5/9/2018 at 5:17 PM, Umbelina said:

There is an epilogue at the end of the book, and following and exploring that would be wonderful for the final season. 

That would be awesome but I hope we don't have to wait that long. I also hope that they don't stall the narrative with several episodes of a dazed and broken June. (I'm still scarred by watching Rick stumble around talking to ghosts in several eps of The Walking Dead.)

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A friend who just read the book, pointed out that it didn't sound all that positive to her - the epilogue. I need to go to the book thread for that. 

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