‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Showrunner Previews June’s ‘Complicated’ Season 3 Journey

The Handmaid's Tale

A new day is dawning for June. Yes, the Handmaid (Elisabeth Moss) is still stuck in the oppressive society known as Gilead, where fertile women like her are forced into reproductive slavery.

And yes, she may seem to be back at square one after turning down the opportunity to escape with her newborn baby at the end of Season 2. But she has slowly transitioned “from a prisoner to an undercover rebel,” says showrunner Bruce Miller. “She takes what she’s learned and brings it to bear.”

That means quietly joining forces with other oppressed women, including Handmaids and the Marthas — Gilead’s class of domestic servants, who were instrumental in getting June’s baby and fellow Handmaid Emily (Alexis Bledel) to Canada. “It’s a lot of groundwork,” says Miller. “And it’s super complicated.”

Particularly because she’s in new territory: At her posting with the mysterious Commander Lawrence (The West Wing‘s Bradley Whitford), June struggles to make sense of the man’s triggers and rules. “Part of her survival is to understand the person who holds her fate in his hands,” explains Miller, who adds that Lawrence has multiple agendas that make him hard to pin down.

The showrunner is quick to remind viewers who may have been turned off by last season’s violence that the overriding message of The Handmaid’s Tale is hope.

“You’re stronger than you think,” he says. “June’s life is difficult and she’s finding a way to navigate it. If June can get out of bed in the morning and make things a little better for somebody, I should be able to.”

The Handmaid’s Tale, Season 3 Premiere, Wednesday, June 5, Hulu