Punished - The Handmaid's Tale
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Recap

Monkees play in the background of June's memories while she's being punished. Cheer up sleepy Jean!

She can't let herself fall in too far, or she won't ever get out. She's been banished to her room for 13 days so far. The door doesn't even close the whole way, but she still can't leave.

She has a bed and not much else in the room, but she does have a light inside the closet. She sees words inside, which sends her spiraling back to the Red Center and Moira scratching Aunt Lydia Sux on the wall of the bathroom stall.

Serena Joy and Fred talk over coffee at breakfast. An Aunt escaped over the Canadian border the night before. Her stories, according to Fred, are lies and hyperbole, but it's already up on their website. Serena Joy hopes they discredit her. Her face betrays her.

Rita goes to find Offred and drops the breakfast tray when it appears Offred is missing. Offred says she fainted.

Rita reports back to Serena Joy and Fred, reminding them the ceremony is tonight. Serena Joy, at first against a doctor's appointment, then agrees.

Offred was hoping she would walk the hour to the office, but she is outside barely 10 seconds on her way to the car to be driven there instead.

She flashes back to learning in the Red Center about the ceremony and Moira's surprise they wouldn't be using turkey basters, but having sex between the wive's legs.

Even the doctor's office is staffed with armed guards rather than nurses to take the Handmaids to their rooms. The doctor stands behind a white cloth, never making eye contact with the patient. It's very bizarre.

Ultimately, he's a guy who believes Waterford is probably sterile and that he, himself, can provide the sperm to finish her off.

On the way home, Offred goes nuts in the car. When they get home, Nick apologizes, wishes he could...and he doesn't finish. 

When she gets home, Serena Joy offers no solace. Offred returns to the closet to talk to the previous Offred on the wall in the closet.

Back in the Red Center days, Moira held an Aunt Elizabeth at knife point and June helped her under the pretense a toilet had flooded again. Moira took the Aunt's clothing. 

They escape after Moira tells the Aunt to remember she did her no harm.

Fred goes into the room before protocol allows, hoping for a rematch of Scrabble at nine o'clock in his office. 

the ceremony begins. Fred cannot get hard enough to insert himself into Offred. He steps out of the ceremony unfinished, humiliating his wife.

He goes into the other room to try to harden up. Serena Joy goes in to help him. She asks if it feels good and goes down on him. He stops her. Wives don't appear to be for that any longer.

Serena Joy reenters the bedroom and tells Offred goes back to her room.

Offred tells herself it's her fault. Fred tried to connect with her before the ceremony. He needs to connect. She refused. 

She goes back to the closet, closing the door.

Moira and June emerge to a different world than the one they left. It's unrecognizable. No street signs. Books burning, bodies hanging. They make a mistake going to the subway train. They have no idea where they are. Maybe they should have asked the Aunt for instructions before leaving.

While Moira and Offred are separated, it all goes to hell. Offred is questioned and Moira gets on the train to Boston.

Offred talks herself out of her funk and knocks on Fred's door. He smiles when he sees her.

He decides to challenge her on a word, and she sees his Latin grammar book. He studied Latin, and she wonders if her predecessors have been to the room, as well.

She asks him to translate the phrase. Don't let the bastards grind you down. He wonders where she heard it. From a friend. Offred wonders what happened to her. She hung herself. Offred uses that to get out of her room. He's trying to ensure Offred doesn't think her life so miserable that she hangs herself like Offred before her. 

Offred is out.

 

Show:
The Handmaid's Tale
Season:
Episode Number:
4

The Handmaid's Tale Season 1 Episode 4 Quotes

Aunt Lydia: Moira?
Moira: Are you saying we will be having intercourse with the men between the wive's legs?

Serena Joy: What did she do this time?
Rita: She was on the ground, mam. She said she fainted.
Fred: She fainted?
Serena Joy: No, that's what she said.
Rita: She was on the ground. Should I make an appointment at the doctor?
Serena Joy: No. She'll be fine.
Rita: We do have the ceremony tonight.
Serena Joy: Make an appointment.