The Handmaid’s Tale “Vows”

Well.  I know I complain a lot about June’s plot armor, but for this episode at least, I don’t think she really had any.  Plus, it was really more of a spotlight for Moira than anything else.  Sure, there’s still a lot of June stuff, and even a bit of stuff with Luke, but it’s a lot of Moira stuff.

I can get behind Moira stuff.

See, Moira, like a lot of other characters that have actually managed to escape from Gilead, well, there doesn’t seem to be any reason for the character to still be on the show.  Sure, it’s nice to have Samira Wiley on the show.  She’s a strong actress, and she brings the goods to her scenes.  But…why is Moira still on the show?

Episodes like this go a long way to show why it might be a good idea to keep her around.  Yes, the likelihood of Moira’s being the person who found June after the bombing run is nearly incalculable.  It’s the height of coincidence, and it is surely done just to set up an episode like this.  But that’s drama for ya.

However, what follows is a more Moira-directed plot.  She’s there with her current girlfriend and a relief group just to deliver supplies.  That’s all.  They can’t take anyone they find back with them.  That includes a shellshocked June, who is still looking for Janine, because if they do something like that, then they’re in violation of the rules and then that could lead Gilead to bar all relief groups from coming in for the rest of time.

That includes June, a woman who has really hit Gilead hard, is a hero to a lot of the people on the relief boat, and a whole host of other things.  Moira, however, sneaks June onboard anyway and only tells the others later when she hears Gilead does a search of the boat before it leaves their territory.

But here’s the thing:  June doesn’t want to go.

June’s only reason to stay was to rescue Hannah first.  That seems increasingly unlikely at this point.  And yes, Moira is quick to point out that over in Canada there’s Luke, Rita, Moira, Emily, and yes, Nichole, June’s other baby.

When the crew debates turning June in, June agrees that she should be returned.

That actually convinces the crew to make June a fake ID, but that doesn’t stop June from trying to steal a lifeboat later.

Moira basically is the only thing keeping June on the boat.  Yes, the plot armor I complain about could very easily apply to the fact that she gets through Gilead’s screening process with minimal efforts, but this whole episode works as a story where June does not get what she wants and other people are making decisions on her behalf and for her own good.

June’s one goal (other than to hurt Gilead as hard as possible) has been put off by her friend now.  She gets a tearful reunion from Luke.  Moira lost her job and her girlfriend over this, and all because Moira wanted to do right by one person.  There should be more repercussions for this, but for now, let me just take a moment to bask in the glory that is…June not getting away with much of anything for an entire episode.

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