“Gilead is within you” has been the rallying cry all season for The Handmaid’s Tale, and it has seemed to describe the Handmaids. The imagery is apt: something implanted without their consent, its growth within them beyond their control, until it eclipses any remaining sense of their former selves. But the real danger, as June, and Serena, have come to learn, is to Gilead’s next generation, born with this defect and destined to know nothing but this world.
Season 2 has been building pretty clearly to some form of internal revolt; the only question has been the who and the why. Eden’s transgression, and the monstrous way in which Gilead makes an example of her, fill in the latter blank. Is it any surprise, then, that this is what makes Serena and the other Wives finally step up?