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Featured Image Credit: Hulu
The third season of The Handmaid's Tale is just around the corner but Gilead is set to look very different when the Hulu series returns this Summer.
As fans of the show know, many viewers were left frustrated at the end of season two when June (Elizabeth Moss) decided not to free Gilead's regime when offered the chance to escape, despite the horrifying oppression she had experienced.
Instead, June turned around, wrapped up in her red habit, and walked back in the direction she'd come from, turning her back on the freedom she was offered and her young baby.All she had to do was step into the van, and freedom would've been hers but instead viewers watched her hand her baby to Emily, telling her "call her Nicole".
The decision divided viewers. Leaving Gilead would have meant leaving older daughter, Hannah, in a state where her future would have included ritualised rape and other horrors. But by turning back, she was leaving her young baby and potentially putting her own life at risk.
Showrunner Bruce Miller told Vanity Fair: "June is diving back into Gilead because she thinks there's things she can do. And I think initially, the thing she thinks she can do is just get her f*cking daughter out.
"If she could snap her fingers and get Hannah and leave, she would do it immediately. If that becomes more difficult - which, it seems to be somewhere between difficult and impossible in the real world - then I think hurting Gilead or weakening Gilead is the best way she can plow the ground for her daughter.
"That's the thing she can do from the inside that she wouldn't be able to do from Canada."
WHAT DOES SERIES 3 HAVE IN STORE FOR JUNE?
But what will June's world look like when she returns to the regime in season three? One thing we know for sure is that June will get Hannah back or die trying, as Miller adds: "You and I are both worried she's gonna' die; she's not."
One Reddit user had an interesting theory on what season three will look like, particularly with the re-introduction of Hannah.
"I've been re-watching season one and seeing how Hannah originally became separated from June.
"Hannah was visibly terrified when being dragged away from June. I can't fathom how a child would forget this.
"Then in S2E10, Hannah asks June why she didn't come back to her... but at the same time knew that June is a Handmaid.
"It makes me wonder: Does Hannah also have a Handmaid in her house; which is why she's familiar with what they do?
"If Hannah is anything like her mom (or grandmother), maybe she's playing a bit of a survival game too to show June she's ok?"
Many fans believe June will make her way to the same district as Hannah, but when will we find out?
WHEN DOES SEASON THREE AIR?
Season three will air in America on June 5th, the two previous seasons landed in the last week of April in the US on Hulu but this year it is believed they want to avoid clashing with Game Of Thrones which returns on April 14.
In the UK, Channel 4 began airing season a few weeks after, so we're hoping season three will land on the British channel late June or early July though Channel 4 have not yet confirmed.
WHO WILL BE RETURNING?
So far we know Elisabeth Moss (June), Joseph Fiennes (Commander Fred Waterford), Yvonne Strahovski (Serena Joy Waterford), OT Fagbenle (June's husband Luke) and Samira Wiley (Moira) are all set to return for a third series and interestingly so is Alexis Bledel who plays Emily.
Showrunner Bruce Miller previously said: "Emily's fascinating character. Alexis just has brought her to life in a way that is subtle and complicated and strong and very believable and, a really remarkable performance. Subtle beyond subtle and just heartbreaking beyond heartbreaking.
"We have not seen the last of Emily and baby Nicole. And I don't know that we're gonna see Nicole going to her first prom very soon, or Emily for that matter. But we have not seen the last of them. We'll follow them on their journey after they leave Offred in the tunnel, in the finale, we will be following them."
Either way, Gilead looks set to become a very different place for Emily.