The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 episode 3 recap & review: Border

Episode 3 of The Handmaid’s Tale follows up after the shocking new development with Hannah and sees June try to find a way to save her daughter from the future that awaits her.


The episode begins with June, distressed over the new horrors she just witnessed via the big screens at the square. She, Luke, and Moira all wonder why Hannah was wearing purple at the funeral ceremony.

June wants to contact Nick but they can’t, without the help of Tuello’s office. That’s when Moira suggests an alternative that involves getting their message across the border with the help of a women refugee group.

Moira and June are escorted to the group by one of the members, Lily, who shows them around the camp that the group has set rather eerily close to the No Man’s Land. June and Moira also learn that groups like these are dispersed across the border, and there’s a name they go by — Mayday.

Back at Gilead, Serena meets up with the McKenzies for a dinner and Nick has been invited there too. McKenzies express their disgust for June and the commander calls her a cancer that needs to be cut. Nick is visibly uncomfortable and later on, when he sneakily meets up with Mark, McKenzie intervenes and tells Nick that he is keeping an eye on him.

Meanwhile, Nick refuses Mark’s proposal as the situation has only worsened in Gilead, with the big target now being June. He later talks to June over a call though and tells her about his wife, Rose, and his helplessness in being able to do anything about Hannah.

He also tells her that the purple color Hannah wore means that she’s now being sent to the “wife school”, where she’d receive training to be a commander’s wife. This only shakes June to her core even more.

Serena tells Mark that she is going to stay in Gilead, her home, despite Mark’s doubts and concerns. However, she is called for a meeting later on and told by the commanders that she’s unable to entertain a continued residence in Gilead.

Instead, Serena is to act as an unofficial global ambassador for Gilead, lending her “unusual expertise” and speaking on their behalf, project a more diplomatic and hygienic image to the rest of the world. Serena demands a personal staff, a budget, and protection for herself and her baby — all of which are approved by the council.

Meanwhile, Aunt Lydia visits Esther and Janine at the hospital. The unhinged lady slaps Esther, who’s unconscious and later visits Janine, crying and praying to the lord to help her recover, saying she’ll change her ways.

Mrs Putnam also visits Janine with Angela and tells her with tears in her eyes that she won’t be forgotten. However, Janine eventually recovers and although not speaking, is conscious and in a wheelchair, while Lydia thanks the lord.

The episode ends with Serena’s car moving into Canada when another car stops them and out pops June, thumping at the window, shouting twice at Serena, “Never touch my daughter again.” Serena asks the driver to back the car up, which he does and as they drive away, June looks on ferociously, before walking back to her car.


  • The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 episode 3 continues to set up the dominoes for the next big showdown. June has been getting revved up by one instigating turn of events after another.
  • Hannah’s next chapter entails a dark future where she is to be trained to be a wife — something June just can’t let happen. She is going to try and stop Hannah from a fate that grim, and in the effort, would invite a whole lot of chaos.
  • The third episode continues to give fans absolute treats in terms of the performances. While Elisabeth’s hair-raising performance is still rife with feral energy unique to her, the latest episode has Ann Dowd deliver yet another lesson in acting in a scene where she succeeds in simultaneously collecting the viewers’ praise as well as their reprehension for the character.
  • It will be interesting to see what June’s next immediate steps are, especially after those exhilarating final moments of the episode. What’s more, is that all the Gilead commanders, including an especially involved McKenzie, are all looking to terminate the cancer that June has become for them.
The Handmaid's Tale season 5 episode 3
The Handmaid's Tale season 5 episode 3 recap & review: Border 1

Director: Dana Gonzales

Date Created: 2022-09-21 09:30

Editor's Rating:

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