The Handmaid’s Tale season 5, episode 7 recap

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Elisabeth Moss and Yvonne Strahovski deliver outstanding performances in ‘No Man’s Land’ as the two rivals are finally reunited. This is another hugely compelling episode that highlights the series’ keen eye for drama and emotional nuance.

This recap of the Hulu series The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Episode 7, “No Man’s Land” contains spoilers.

The story of the maid season 5 has really been firing on all cylinders lately, with some devastating revelations and plenty of cliffhanger endings to keep viewers coming back for more. The performances and storytelling were top notch too, which thankfully continues in the stunning ‘No Man’s Land’. The seventh episode spends most of its running time working like a bottle episode June and serena Escaping into the wild together after the previous episode’s hijinks, while a flashback draws heavily on the current predicament of the two rivals.

The story of the maid Season 5 Episode 7 Summary

The episode picks up just seconds after “Together” ended, with June speeding aimlessly down a side street with Serena pointing a gun straight at her from the backseat. June is desperate to know what the hell is going on, but Serena keeps telling her to keep driving. However, Serena is in agony and accidentally fires the gun as she is jarred in pain. That’s the last straw for June, who applies the brakes and quickly crashes to run into the woods.

June escapes her kidnapper and goes into the undergrowth. From her vantage point, she watches as Serena chases her and her car crashes into a ditch. Forced to help her villainous enemy, June turns around and comes to Serena’s aid. She quickly realizes that Serena is in labor and screams in pain as another contraction occurs. June takes Serena’s gun and assesses the situation, spotting a barn in the distance.

Serena’s plans have really failed. They now find themselves lost in the wilderness with Gilead chasing them and a baby on the way. The authors have piled one monumental dilemma on top of another, leading to intriguing results. In the cold barn, June reflects on her own previous pregnancies and realizes that this one time she gave birth alone. Serena isn’t much better, but at least she has June this time, although she can’t bring herself to actually allow June to help her.

Flashbacks are cleverly inserted into these tense scenes. We’re going back to the days when June was called Offred. She is sent to the house of a commander’s wife for the birth of a baby. Serena is there to support the woman while June is there for the maid ofclarence. However, the maid is bleeding profusely and is then operated on. The baby survives, but Ofclarence dies in labor. The maids watch as one of their own is wheeled out while the rich ladies celebrate their newborn baby with no regrets.

Back in the present, June storms off to try to get the car out of the ditch so she can escape this nightmare. Even if Serena and the unborn baby are supposed to survive and June stays close, they’ll be stuck in the middle of nowhere without wheels. So she puts her efforts into solving this current problem first. June tries everything she can to move the vehicle, but it just won’t budge. Finally, she puts a car mat under the wheel and fastens a wooden post underneath. This works wonderfully and the car drives back onto the road. June rips away the broken glass from the shot and sees the blood on her hands. Is that Serena’s or her own? Either way, it triggers a reaction in June and she goes back to the barn to do the right thing.

June returns and helps with Serena’s painful natural birth. Serena is over the moon to have such a beautiful boy and even June is caught up in the moment. Serena names the baby Noah and the two enemies discuss breastfeeding. Noah snaps up quickly while June always struggled. Now that the drama is out of the way, the two rivals find time to discuss the more important matters. Serena wants to know why June didn’t kill her when she had the chance and they debate Noah’s future. Both Elisabeth Moss and Yvonne Strahovski are intriguing in this sequence, delivering stellar performances as the two foes are brought together through a life-changing event. June admits she didn’t mean to kill Serena and they both hope Noah won’t end up like his father Fred.

The end

June reiterates that they need to go to a hospital. They have neither food nor water and it is bitterly cold in the barn. Serena might be sweating, but that’s because of her fever. She adamantly refuses to go to a hospital, explaining the abusive relationship she has with the Wheelers. It’s heartbreaking to hear Serena speak so openly about her abuse. She admits that they control her and treat her like her maid. Serena explains that she has no future and wants June to take her baby to give him a safer life.

At that moment, June realizes that the servants were nothing but vessels for Serena and the other Gilead women. However, she doesn’t want to be like them and instead offers to save Serena’s life, adding that Noah needs his mother. It’s another powerful exchange in a truly compelling episode. Shortly after, they find themselves in the hospital and Serena is taken away for a check-up. June checks on them later and Serena seems to have relaxed a bit. She complains about the formula and just wants to go home, even though she doesn’t really have a home anymore.

Luke and June are reunited and then the Canadian officers arrive to arrest Serena. She is arrested on the spot and informed that she is to be taken to a remand prison. Serena asks about her baby’s safety and they explain that child protection will take care of Noah on short notice. The dire situation hits Serena hard and she panics and yells at June to come and help her. It’s a horrifying ending as Serena screams for help as they take their baby away while Luke looks on with a smile and claims it’s justice. Even the villainous Serena didn’t deserve such a callous ending.

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Additional reading The Handmaid’s Tale season 5, episode 7 recap

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