‘Very moving’ The Handmaid’s Tale’s June star shares hidden meaning in Hannah cameo


The Handmaid’s Tale is Hulu’s hit dystopian series which returned to screens for season five in September. During the second half of the double-episode premiere, viewers were shocked to see Hannah Bankole (played by Jordana Blake) make an appearance, which actress Elisabeth Moss opened up about. 

Fans had been eagerly awaiting the show’s comeback after the season four finale saw the shocking death of Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes). 

June Osborne (Elizabeth Moss) had rounded up a group of ex handmaid’s and beat him to death in No Man's Lands for the abuse she suffered in his household. 

The premiere saw his wife Serena Joy (Yvonne Strahovski) find out about his death and strategies to give him a grand funeral. 

As they were in custody for their crimes, Fred was seen as a traitor by the other commanders in Gilead because he agreed to provide inside information for full immunity. 

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As a result, they had planned to give Fred a small send-off at an intimate church which surprised Serena because he was one of the key founders of the totalitarian society. 

However, she was able to get Commander Lawrence (Bradley Whitford) on her side and he convinced the others that Fred deserved a grand funeral. 

His send-off became a state funeral and grand affair which was broadcast across the world, it was symbolism heavy and had the other Commanders and Handmaids in attendance. 

In a jaw-dropping turn, Serena accepted flowers from a young girl who turned out to be June’s kidnapped daughter Hannah. 

However, actress Elisabeth revealed there was a deeper hidden meaning behind Hannah’s cameo. 

In an interview, she shared: “From the beginning, I’ve always felt this story was very much about survival — and not only June’s survival, but the search for survival on the part of so many characters. 

“The search to survive as who you are, as who you want to be, with the choices you want to make. I find that very moving.

“Whoever it is, whether it’s Serena or June or Moira (Samira Wiley), it is always about their search to survive as the person that they want to be.”

Elisabeth continued: “And with June and Serena, they’re trying to figure out who that person is. 

I always describe this season as June versus Serena, but more to the point, it’s June versus Offred (her handmaid name) and Serena versus Mrs. Waterford. 

“These are two women who are trying to figure out who they are in this new world where they are both post-Gilead but still feel Gilead pulling at them. 

“They’re trying to be these new people with this supposed newfound freedom, and it’s not that easy. And they are circling each other in their search,” she told The Hollywood Reporter.

The Handmaid’s Tale continues Wednesdays on Hulu. A UK release date is yet to be announced.

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