{Television} The Handmaid’s Tale Season 3 Episode 5 ‘Uknown Caller’ Recap

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We drop in on the protest we saw Luke and Nicole attend at the end of the last episode.  June is giving thanks to a god who would allow that to happen. She then mentions it’s more a human accomplishment than a divine one.  The other HM are thrilled for her. June misses Luke. Her HM partner dogooder is praying for Nicole’s return. It doesn’t sit well with June.  Meanwhile Commander Lawrence and June exchange pleasantries and he claims whatever she wants he is not willing to give, because he knows she isn’t nice to anyone without an agenda (harsh but probably true)  She wants to know Luke is safe. She is afraid Gilead will hurt him. He claims they are in danger. Like everyone….ever. Meanwhile Serena and Rita chat a little about the baby. Fred invites her in to talk to the conclave of other commanders.  Serena is invited in to give her input. Serena asks about Luke. They go through his background and mention he has no religious record other than the baptism of his first child. They also mention that she is healthy and has a tooth. Lost in the intimacy of the moment we learn Canada has no extradition treaty and it may be difficult to get Nichole back.  Fred thought getting Nicole to Canada would make things better. Serena tells Fred in private she just wants the whole thing to be over. Fred and Serena come to visit June. They want to arrange a visit for Serena, Fred, Luke, and Nicole. Fred says they will all be protected. June because she is not crazy says hell no. Serena tries to pitch it to June womano a womano.  It’s a good moment but I don’t see anyway this plays out in a credible fashion. The single driving force of the last two seasons has been Nicole’s safety. June says if she does it Serena will owe here. June calls Luke. Luke is clearly broken without her. She tells him that he should bring Nicole to airport in Toronto to see the Waterfords. He tells her ok but not both of them just Serena.  She agrees and her two minutes are up. Serena tells June “god bless you”. June ain’t much in a blessed kind of mood. She asks to be excused and goes to her room where I would imagine she will sign the black book because god is not high on her priority list right now. Luke and Moira chat about the phone call. They are both very upset. Mrs. Lawrence checks on June. She is turning into an interesting character.  Mrs. Lawrence and June discuss the power of love, not in the Huey Lewis kind of way. She mourns for the man Joseph use to be. June argues that maybe there is a little left of that guy because he helped her and Emily. June heads into the basement where she looks through boxes of mixtapes. Man the mixtape is the nostalgia winner this year. She puts in a mixtape and rocks out.

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At her parents beach house Serena is gathering photos of herself.  She has put the fake finger back on as well. Rita brings her lunch. Serena shows her the present she intends to give Nicole. Rita asks Serena if she will give Nicole a kiss for her and hands Serena a small package that came in the middle of the night. She does not know what is in it. Serena takes it before Fred arrives to escort her to the airplane. She boards a plan with an army dude. In Canada, the same intelligence guy we met in season two meets her and requests that she change and meets Luke in a public setting.  She sees Nicole and Luke. She offers her hand to him. He rejects it. He is HOSTILE. AS HE SHOULD BE. They talk about June. Luke wants to know who she is with. She tells him Joseph Lawrence. They have a really rich discussion about personal stories. Luke is prepared to tell Nichole about her Bio mother. Not her adopted mother. Serena explains they both wanted Nicole to have a better life. Serena says she protected June. Serena says goodbye. Luke offers to let her hold Nicole. She says yes and takes her. I just don’t buy this portion of the story.  The Canadian who helped facilitate the meeting is the CIA guy who tried to flip Serena in season 2. He tries again. We learn the package is a note with a cell phone. The note reads “If you need me”. The Lawrences are now listening to the mix tapes as well. Fred asks her how it went. She said Nicole was perfect and now it’s over. Fred because he is a dick says it doesn’t have to be. At the worlds worst Aldi’s June and her HM partner share a cold exchange. She tells June that she is late. She does not seem happy about it. It seems our partner is starting to feel remorse about how she treated June.  The Godstapo grab June from the store. Looks like some shit is about to go down. She is loaded into a van. Luke puts in a tape into a walkman. June has taped a recorded message to him. Ahhh so I think the confusion was the canadian CIA guy gave Serena the cell phone and she gave the original package to Luke. The original package was the mixtape. June tells Luke all about Nick and their affair. She tells him she is trying to survive. She tells him he needs to do the same. The Godstapo have arrived at their destination. Aunt Lydia is here….Not good. They are in a green room of sorts. She is made to change.  There is a new uniform for her to change into. Looks to be a television studio. Fred and Serena are there. I think I know whats up. Fred and Serena are making a television plea for Nichole’s return. June is prop behind them. She be pissed. Now we hear Bloody Sunday to complete the scene. The way this episode ended was exactly how anyone could have predicted it. Its dumb. Usually a smart show this episode was full of dumb choices which lead to predictable outcomes.

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