With the return of female-fronted shows like Big Little Lies and The Handmaid’s Tale, it’s about to be an exciting summer for women on TV. The Handmaid’s Tale returned on Hulu on June 5, and fans are already knee-deep in The Handmaid’s Tale season 3 theories. As one of the most talked-about series on TV, spoilers around The Handmaid’s Tale‘s third season are kept under lock and key. Still, fans have their theories about what will happen next, especially after season 2’s explosive finale, which saw June/Offred (Elisabeth Moss) stay in Gilead after helping her friend and fellow handmaid Emily (Alexis Bledel) escape.
What will happen next? Hulu has already released the first three episodes of the Emmy-winning series, but there’s sure to be a lot more twists and turns before the season 3 finale. Can’t wait to find out what happens next? We did the legwork and found TK theories that could predict the sure-to-be nail-biting storyline of The Handmaid’s Tale season 3.
With three episodes on Hulu so far, we’re still weeks away from finding out the end of The Handmaid’s Tale season 3 (and what cliffhanger the creators will leave with us for season 4), so in the meantime, let’s look at what the internet has cooked up for yet another talked-about season of The Handmaid’s Tale.
There’s a Reason No Handmaid Wears Glasses
Before the start of season 3, Reddit user @gmy20 pointed out an interesting observation about how no woman in Gilead wears glasses. “This was an observation I made super early on. None of the women in this show (Handmaid’s, Wives, Econowomen, Marthas) are pictured wearing glasses,” they wrote. “I’m only referring to women because Commander Lawrence does wear glasses. So is it only allowed for males? Gilead is so oppressive I feel like if you wore glasses it could be seen as a weakness or something. It makes me think about people with disabilities. What would happened to you if you were a true Gilead believer but had some sort of serious physical disability? Didn’t Gilead execute all the doctors except a few neonatal doctors?”
This observation could be explained in season 3, according to executive producer Warren Littlefield who told Good Housekeeping of a scene in episode 2 season 3 where Emily, who escaped Gilead in season 2, as her eye prescription checked by a doctor. (As fans remember, Emily wore glasses in her flashback but was without them as a handmaid.) Of course, in true Handmaid’s Tale fashion, the scene isn’t what we think it is. “We know what Emily’s going through, and that examination is not about her eyes,” Littlefield said. “And ultimately, she takes a very deep breath and reaches out to her wife, and says, ‘I’m here.’ And so a journey begins and that journey starts with reconnecting with her wife and child.”
Eyes have been a recurring theme on Handmaid’s Tale since the start. “Under his eye” is a phrase the people of Gilead use to greet each other and when Janine’s eye was removed in episode 1, Moira told June, “We’re breeding stock. You don’t need eyes for that.” Moira also references the the bible verse Matthew 5:29: “If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away.”
We don’t know how eyes will play a part in season 3 yet, but from the looks of it, there’s a lot of symbolism to unravel.
June Will Join Commander Lawrence to Overthrow Gilead
Why did June stay in Gilead after she was so close to escape? That was the question many fans had after the season 2 finale. When asked why June stayed in Gilead, showrunner Bruce Miller told Deadline, “Because she’s a mother. She has one child who’s going off to safety and one child that’s still here so she stays for her daughter Hannah… Season three is really about blessed be the fight. It’s about June rising up to either save Hannah or change the world.”
Though she frees one daughter, Holly/Nicole, with Emily, she stays to rescue her other daughter, Hannah. How will she do so? Well, fans think it will be with the help of Commander Joseph Lawrence, who revealed that he was part of the resistance toward the end of season 2. Here’s how Reddit user @canwin99 thinks the alliance will go down, “June will go to Joseph’s house. June becomes Lawrence’s handmaid… June and Lawrence plan the destruction of Gilead together.”
Serena Will Become a Handmaid and Be Impregnated
This is a wild (but possible) theory. In season 2, we saw Serena’s arc from Commander Waterford’s cold-hearted wife to a woman who empathized with June. After a few episodes of helping June and the resistance, the season 2 finale saw Serena give June her baby, so they could live free outside of Gilead. But her acts of resistance likely won’t come without punishment. Some fans theorize that “Fred will be purged and Serena will become a handmaid” because of Serena’s actions. Further, in an even more surprising twist of events, Serena will become impregnated by her commander. Is it likely that Handmaid’s Tale will go down this route? Maybe not. But we’re not ruling out just yet.
Season 3 Will Include a Time Jump
Seasons 1 and 2 included flashbacks to the characters of Handmaid’s Tale before Gilead, but because of the events of season 2 and the growing power that the resistance has, fans theorize that season 3 will include time jumps to the future, after the war is over and the handmaids are free. This theory came from a Hollywood Reporter interview with Miller in which he talks about the The Handmaid’s Tale book’s time jumps.
“The book starts, then jumps 200 years with an academic discussion at the end of it, about what’s happened in those intervening 200 years. It’s maybe handled in an outline, but it’s still there in Margaret’s novel. We’re not going beyond the novel, we’re just covering territory she covered quickly, a bit more slowly,” he said.
Aunt Lydia Will Turn Against Gilead
After Aunt Lydia is stabbed and pushed down some stairs at the end of season 2, fans thought it was over for the terrifying aunt. In an interview with IndieWire, Miller confirmed that Lydia is alive but changed by the near-death experience. “Aunt Lydia doesn’t die, [but] she’s transformed by this event. The fact that one of her girls… has literally stabbed her in the back. I think that that alters your workplace feelings on a day-to-day basis… In her case, it makes her double down that she feels like she just wasn’t strong enough in her discipline. So she, I think, has decided it’s time to get tough.” he said.
Miller suggests that Aunt Lydia will become even more strict after she was almost killed by Emily, but fans believe that Miller’s interview could be a red herring and that Aunt Lydia will actually turn against Gilead and not for it after her near-death. “If Serena, June, Rita & Aunt Lydia join forces they could bring Gilead down,” Reddit user @BeautifulFreedom wrote.
Rita Is an American Spy
Rita has been one of the most mysterious characters in Handmaid’s Tale so far. The character has never supported the state of Gilead, nor has she been a rebel like June. Fans theorize that she’s a spy to feed the former Americans (and Canadians) information about Gilead so it could eventually be overthrown.
“There’s no way she’s a true believer. She can be religious, but not in the Gilead way. Remember when she said that Isaac could break her jaw without any consequences? She’s too smart to be a true believer… What if Rita is spying on them? What if she’s hiding something in those bean jars? Reddit user @csemege wrote.