Welcome to the resistance, June Osborne.
When last we were in Gilead, audiences saw a bloodied but not broken June (Elisabeth Moss) suffering from a gunshot wound after successfully secreting more than 50 of the restrictive republic’s children onto a plane for transport to safety in Canada. Carried to safety by her fellow handmaids, June recites Exodus 3: 7-8 to herself, which speaks of the Lord seeing the suffering of his people and delivering them to a land of milk and honey.
And so a freedom fighter was born.
On Thursday, Hulu released a teaser for the upcoming season of the critically-acclaimed series “The Handmaid’s Tale,” which returns to the streamer on April 28. Its fourth season adopts a more lean and mean model, returning to 10-episode seasons, three of which will be available to stream at launch, likely followed by weekly episodic releases afterwards.
The teaser trailer features June taking an active role in the rebellion, which serves as a departure for the character whose previous focus was decidedly insular, determined only to preserve her own safety as well as the safety of her children. But this is not a new and improved, entirely altruistic June. Still her rage fires her and her equivalent quests for both justice and revenge threaten not only to consume her, but also to destroy her connections to the people she holds most dear.
In the background of the teaser, we hear transmissions of a broadcast network called Radio Free America and learn of growing global sanctions on Gilead, suggesting that for as much as the pressure is rising inside the regime’s walls, the rest of the world is closing in as well, with no way of telling which of the characters will ultimately end up in the crosshairs.
As if transforming June into a freedom fighter wasn’t enough, Moss is also stepping behind the camera for the first time in her career, directing three of the season’s 10 episodes. During Thursday’s Television Critics Association Winter 2021 Press Tour presentation, the star reflected on the one aspect of directing that left her a little spooked before diving into the new challenge.
“The thing I was most nervous about was directing the actors. I was just nervous I wouldn’t know what to say and I wouldn’t say it right,” Moss said, explaining that when performing, it’s a cardinal sin to try and give notes to other actors. “And then that ended up becoming my favorite part of the whole experience.”
“It’s not that you’re ever fixing anything, you’re just trying to give them something to play with or give them a thought that might make them go in a different direction,” she said. “When you’ve got these actors, all you have to do is pluck one little string and they all of a sudden vibrate into this entirely new world. It makes your job very, very easy.”
The series stars Elisabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski, Samira Wiley, Alexis Bledel, Ann Dowd, Max Minghella, Madeline Brewer, O-T Fagbenle, Amanda Brugel, Bradley Whitford and Sam Jaeger. “The Handmaid’s Tale” season four will be executive produced by Moss, Bruce Miller, Warren Littlefield, Daniel Wilson, Fran Sears, Eric Tuchman, John Weber, Frank Siracusa, Sheila Hockin, Kira Snyder and Yahlin Chang. The series is produced by MGM Television and internationally distributed by MGM.
Check out the teaser below.