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The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 4 Recap “Dear Offred”

Don’t miss Celebrity Myxer’s recap of The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 4 “Dear Offred.” June fights her need for violent revenge as Serena settles into her new role in Toronto. Rattled by Janine, Aunt Lydia makes a surprising suggestion to Lawrence. Here’s what you missed!

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Watch The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 4 “Dear Offred”

Previously on The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 3, June and Moira join a rebel outpost. As a pregnant widow, Serena tries to restore her status. Aunt Lydia questions her strict methods of dealing with Handmaids

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Warning… Spoilers below!

On The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 4, June struggles to resist the temptation to kill Serena now that she’s back in Toronto and out of the government’s custody. Meanwhile, Aunt Lydia rethinks her approach to the Handmaids after what happened with Esther and Janine, and asks for Janine’s help in reforming the system.

Losing Control

June is at the playground with Nichole when a woman approaches her. She says she knows who June is, and June takes Nichole and gets ready to leave. The woman continues to talk to her, though, and she tells June she was lucky to be in Gilead because it gave her Nichole. She tries to touch Nichole, and June lashes out, telling her to stay away. She pushes the woman up against the swings after she tells June she doesn’t deserve Nichole and calls her names.

June and Luke talk to a therapist about the encounter, and the therapist tells June that the woman’s response is common in women with infertility. June tells them she went a little past getting angry and got physical with the woman, and Luke and June both want to know how June can work on not getting physical with other people who pray to Serena and worship Gilead.

Home Away From Home

Mark tells Serena that the Canadian government won’t be watching her like a hawk, so she should have some privacy. He also suggests that Serena takes asylum and gets protection as an American citizen, but Serena claims she isn’t an American citizen, her allegiance is to God. Mark then officially releases Serena from the custody of the American government. Serena meets Mr. Shaw, her new escort. As she gets in the car, Mark wishes Serena luck and tells her to tread carefully, she’s in a free country now.

Serena arrives at the Gilead Information Center, which is still in the process of being finished, and where she’ll be living.

Can’t Get You Off My Mind

Mark shows up to see June, Luke, and Moira, and tells them that Hannah looked good and healthy in the brief moment he saw her. Mark tells them all that Serena has been released from their custody, and that she’s now on property that Gilead owned pre-war. Mark tells them about the cultural center that’s being built, and that Serena is going to be the spokesperson for Gilead in Canada. Luke orders Mark to get out, but Mark makes sure they know that Serena has no status or money here, so she can’t do anything. June reminds Mark that she warned him, but he didn’t listen, and calls him a disappointment. Luke is livid, and wants to do anything to find out where this place is, but June points out that Serena always gets what she wants. Luke reassures June that they’ll stop it, but June looks calm as can be as she assures Luke that she isn’t worried.

That night, June sneaks out of bed, but Luke is awake and hears her get up. June digs up the gun that she buried in the snow and drives off.

June sees people with candles walking toward the Gilead Information Center and makes sure the gun is loaded. However she isn’t able to cock the gun because it’s frozen, no matter how hard she tries. She watches as the people stop and look up at Serena, who stands in the window. June gets out, stares at Serena, then drives off.

Mr. Shaw checks in on Serena, and tells Serena that they can’t do anything unless June sets foot on the property. He promises to keep both Serena and the baby safe.

June returns home and tells Luke where she went. She admits to not being able to think about anything besides shooting Serena in the head, and she doesn’t know how to stop herself from actually doing it. Luke reassures June that they can use alternative methods like the city council and building codes to take her down. When June still doesn’t seem to believe him, Luke plays out the scenario of June shooting Serena: they take Nichole from her, and they lose their best chance of getting Hannah. Luke asks June if he can just try it his way, and June tells him okay.

Aunt Lydia is Put in Her Place

Aunt Lydia tries to help Janine exercise and take a few steps. Aunt Lydia tries to quote the Bible, but Janine gets upset, saying her legs don’t work, so that won’t help her any. She asks if Esther has woken up yet, and Aunt Lydia says no, but it serves her right. Janine calls Aunt Lydia out, saying Esther is an abused child and that she warned Aunt Lydia about her. When Aunt Lydia says she gave Esther an opportunity to live in service, Janine reminds her that the only other option is the Colonies, so it’s not really an option at all. Aunt Lydia continues to try and defend her actions, but Janine can see Aunt Lydia for who she truly is, she knows what she does to her “precious girls”. Aunt Lydia walks out without another word.

Getting Settled In

Serena calls Lawrence, and asks why he declined invitations on her behalf. Lawrence tells Serena she doesn’t need to overexert herself, but she wants to remind other countries that Gilead is the only one with an increase in live births. Lawrence agrees that it might be a good idea to talk to South America about that. Lawrence knows about her encounter with June, and advises Serena to focus on work and avoid June, since she has a history of lashing out.

Dear Offred

June comes home to see Moira holding a letter addresses to Offred. June opens it, and it’s a notice of the Gilead Information Center opening. June is positive that Serena is going to bring Gilead to Canada, and says the only way to stop them is to put them all in the ground. June paces angrily, then smashes a plate on the cabinets. Nichole starts crying, and June goes to comfort her.

Moira finds June with Nichole, and June doesn’t understand why she’s been acting the way she is. Moira tells her that she’s rightfully angry, but that Luke is right, they have to play by the rules now. Moira says she’ll gladly dance on Serena’s grave, but it’s not worth June losing her family. June wonders if this is just who she is now, but Moira assures her that she’s no longer worried about June being around Nichole, so that’s progress.

Alternative Methods

Mr. Shaw informs Serena that Luke is outside to see her, and suggests that he handles it, but Serena isn’t worried. Luke comes in to see her, and Serena has Mr. Shaw search him for any weapons or security concerns again. When they’re left alone, Luke tells Serena there’s a ton of people that want her dead, but she says it looks like the exact opposite. Luke takes out papers, and tells Serena they’re building codes. He claims he’s found 15 violations that could get the building condemned; if he makes a few calls, he could get the place shut down in a few days. Serena doesn’t seem impressed at that being his reason for being there. So, Luke tells her the other reason he came: to let Serena know that June is going to kill her, and he’s going to let her.

Luke says that Serena can get kicked out or killed, or help them get Hannah back. Serena tells him that Agnes is happy and with good and loving parents, and she doesn’t want to question God’s will. Serena wonders why Luke never went back to Gilead to save Hannah and why he let June suffer the consequences for that, but says that Nick was her support, so she’s sure that made Luke feel comforted. This angers Luke, and he threatens Serena to stay away from his family, or the next time he sees her, he’s going to kill her himself.

Changes to the System

When Lawrence talks to Aunt Lydia about another Handmaid-on-Handmaid attack, Aunt Lydia assures him that Esther was the last Handmaid that was under June’s influence. Lawrence hopes that’s true, because now that Gilead is opening their doors slightly, when the world looks at the Handmaid system, it needs to be running smoothly. Aunt Lydia thinks that the system needs to be reformed to prevent further issues, and suggests that the Handmaids all remain under her care, except for once a month when the Commanders come to perform the Ceremonies. Lawrence practically laughs at this idea, saying no Commander is going to back up her plan. Lawrence assures her that the system isn’t changing, but that Aunt Lydia just needs to get a grip on her Handmaids.

An Opportunity Arises

Serena prepares for a photoshoot, and is advised to stay away from the windows for her own safety. June is outside, and tucks her gun into her jeans as she gets out of her car. Serena can hear the crowd of protestors versus worshippers as her photos are being taken, and asks what’s going on.

June walks up to the people fighting, and one man is telling a protestor that she needs a man to put her in her place. When the man shoves a girl, June and Moira step in. Moira defends the girl and tells him to take it easy, and the man punches Moira in the face. June pulls her gun to him, then shoots into the air. Serena hears this, and is scared as Mr. Shaw takes Serena to get her someplace safe.

Luke runs through the crowd and frantically tells June to put the gun away. June yells at the man to go, and he runs away. Luke pulls June away quickly, and after they check to make sure Moira is okay, they run off. However, they turn the corner and run right into Mr. Shaw and Serena as he’s trying to help her into the car. Mr. Shaw tells them to stay back, but June’s hand goes right to her gun. She looks as if she’s going to do it, but then looks at Serena’s pregnant belly, and hesitates long enough that Mr. Shaw is able to get Serena in the car. June and Luke take off running again. Serena is terrified as they drive off.

The First Step Toward Progress

Aunt Lydia helps Janine walk out of the hospital, but she doesn’t want Aunt Lydia’s help. Aunt Lydia tries to tell her that God chose to save her, and wonders why Janine doesn’t think there’s a reason behind it all, but Janine doesn’t care anymore.

Once they’re in the back of the van, Aunt Lydia admits that she should have listened to Janine about Esther. She then asks Janine for her help with the other Handmaids, that she needs her to look out for them and let her know when one of them is struggling. Janine points out that if she does that, Aunt Lydia will just do something to punish them, but Aunt Lydia assures Janine that she wants to do things differently, she wants to know earlier on, and approach it with more compassion.

They get back to the Red Center, and once Aunt Lydia leaves, all the Handmaids run to Janine to make sure she’s okay.

The Right Way

Luke and June get back home, and Luke gets a call. The Chief Inspector in the Fire Department lost his sister in Gilead, and is shutting down the Gilead Information Center for building code violations. That means Serena is homeless. Luke asks June for the gun, and she gives it to him. June tells Luke that even though she didn’t do it this time, she can’t promise that she won’t the next time. Luke can’t promise that he won’t either, and tells June they’ll just have to trust each other. They start kissing, and take it inside.

Mr. Shaw takes Serena to the home of a worshipper named Alanis Wheeler, who immediately gets down and starts praying while touching Serena’s stomach.

June throws the notice of the Gilead Information Center into the fire and watches it burn.

What did you think of The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 4? Let’s talk about The Handmaid’s Tale in the comments below! Missed any of the episodes? Catch up with our recaps!

Air Date: September 28, 2022.

The Handmaid’s Tale Cast

  • Elisabeth Moss as June Osborne / Offred
  • Max Minghella as Nick Blaine
  • Joseph Fiennes as Commander Fred Waterford
  • O-T Fagbenle as Luke Bankole
  • Ann Dowd as Aunt Lydia
  • Alexis Bledel as Emily / Ofglen / Ofsteven
  • Yvonne Strahovski as Serena Joy Waterford
  • Samira Wiley as Moira
  • Madeline Brewer as Janine / Ofwarren / Ofdaniel

Catch a new episode each week on Hulu, check out listings dates below. Stay right here, stay mixed in because The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 5, stay tuned! Drop your email to get insights into your inbox…

The Handmade's Tale Season 5 Episode Guide

Season Episode Title Air Date
5 10 “Safe” The Handmade's Tale Season 5 Finale November 9, 2022
5 9 “Allegiance” November 2, 2022
5 8 “Motherland” October 26, 2022
5 7 “No Man’s Land” October 19, 2022
5 6 “Together” October 12, 2022
5 5 Fairytale October 5, 2022
5 4 Dear Offred September 28, 2022
5 3 Maypole September 21, 2022
5 2 Ballet September 14, 2022
5 1 Morning” The Handmade's Tale Season 5 Premiere September 14, 2022

Photo credit: Hulu

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