We have said it before, but we are glad that there is a week between episodes of 'The Handmaid's Tale', we need it to recover. However this week's episode wasn't so hard on us, we would nearly say it was hopeful but this show has fooled us one too many times before.

It all kicked off with news that the Waterfords were off on their hollybobs to Canada. Well, they were going for political reasons but let's face it, anywhere is better than Gilead, even Serena is beginning to believe that. Her longing looks out the window at all those lovely free Canadians doing what they want proved that this is not the same steadfast Serena we have seen in previous episodes.

That didn't stop her dropping a bombshell on June before she left though announcing that she would be packing her bags as soon as the baby was born. Whatever ice that had thawed between them has clearly refrozen. That left poor June on a mad dash to try find some half-decent folks to act as a sort of Godmother to her future little one, even having a surprisingly tender moment with Aunt Lydia as she recruited her to the cause.

Meanwhile, over in Canada, Serena is subject to an indecent proposal of sorts as she is offered a chance to get the hell out of dodge and maybe even have a baby of her own one day 'cos you know that whole fertility problem thing? That's the men's fault.

That's great and all but please tell me artificial insemination was at least a pit stop for Fred and Serena on the way to a totalitarian concubine state? Right? Right?!

Serena's having none of it however but it's clear that she has doubts about Gilead and is defintitely left shook when June's husband Luke angrily confronts them in what was about the most emotion we have ever seen from Luke. It felt like some very satisfactory viewer pay off to watch him get the chance to do this, not to mention how cool it was to see Nick and Luke meet. Kind of like when you see two characters from completely different sides of the Seven Kingdoms share a scene in 'Game of Thrones'.

Their meeting of course led to the exchange of these letters that have been circulating since season one and finally they were in the hands of someone who could make them "go boom". It certainly made for a dramatic exit from the country for the Waterfords and has left the reputation of Gilead in shatters internationally.

The best and most uplifting part of the entire episode, nay, series to date, was when Nick delivered the news to June that Luke loved her, that he would never give up, and oh yeah, that Moira escaped and is alive and well. Let's just take a moment here to appreciate the good egg that is Nick, who told June everything about what went down despite being in love with her and knowing what this information would mean for her.

And it means a lot. June now knows that two of the most important people to her are not only alive, but actively fighting for her to get out of Gilead. We can only hope that the exhilarating hopefulness of this news doesn't lead her to make any rash decisions. As much as we're all on for June's great escape, we just can't go through it again if she doesn't make it. Also given that there is a season three, we can only assume she doesn't. Unless the next season is focused on taking down Gilead from the outside... could that even work as a show?

If not, at least they've now got a good spin-off idea with Serena living it large in Honolulu. 

Episode 1 & 2 review

Episode 3 review

Episode 4 review

Episode 5 review

Episode 6 review

Episode 7 review

Episode 8 review