The Handmaid’s Tale – Season 5 Episode 9 “Allegiance” Recap & Review

Allegiance

Episode 9 of The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 starts with Mark meeting with June and Luke. It turns out Hannah’s Wife School is located in Colorado Springs. It actually used to be a former US Air Force Academy before being repurposed.

Thirty girls have been identified and are bound to being rescued. Mark’s taskforce intends to launch in three separate aircraft. They have a clear flight path to the school, and they’re going to parachute in. They have plans to kill anyone who gets in their way, with Commander Elijah leading the force.

June convinces Mark to let them watch the broadcast as he sees it that night, pointing out that unlike the other parents, she actually gave them intel to work with.

Meanwhile, Serena holds baby Noah and continues to hold her nerve as the Wheeler’s wind her up and encourage her to pump her breasts so Mrs Wheeler can feed Noah instead.

Serena swallows hard and forces a smile, but you can tell she’s not happy. She also attempts to get out of the Wheeler residence and wants to be at the upcoming rally with Noah to encourage more women to come into the fertility center she pitched. Mr Wheeler agrees to consider it, but he’s pretty dismissive in his reaction.

Naomi Putnam is brought before Lawrence, deciding to reward her for putting up with her husband Warren for so long. She can’t be a widow with a young child, and Lawrence suggests they get married to settle any unpleasantries that may arise. It’s actually her choice too, and Naomi won’t be bound for the colonies if she refuses. Mrs Putnam is stunned into silence, while Lawrence is clearly uncomfortable with this arrangement too.

That night, the raid begins and June is there to watch the operation take place. “You’re coming home.” She whispers. Unfortunately, en-route the planes come under attack. Gilead anticipated their mission and they moved their anti-aircraft guns, smashing through all 3 planes. There were no survivors – including Elijah.

Lawrence rings June the next day and continues his pitch for her to be in New Bethlehem. He also brings up Nick being there too and claims it’s a good deal and she should take it. However, he has terms. He wants June to go public and call the mission a “foolish act of aggression.” June refuses, realizing it would paint Gilead as the victims in all this. and eventually hangs up. Lawrence has tears in his eyes.

June heads over to see Mark and lets him know she’s done with Lawrence and won’t even entertain the idea of engaging with him in the future. She’s intent on continuing and attempting something different. Mark suggests using Nick to be their inside man. While he was spooked before, June could be the decider here and convince Nick to play ball.

Naturally, June heads over to meet Nick and questions why he didn’t take up the offer. It turns out Rose is actually pregnant, and he sees Gilead as making progress and changing. “I wish the world would just go away, just for a little bit.” June laments, going on to tell Nick she doesn’t want to make trouble for him. The pair linger, with both expressing their love, before parting ways.

In the morning, Mrs Wheeler slaps Serena several times in the face, telling her to stay away from her husband and calling her a whore. However, Serena is allowed to go to the meeting, but she won’t be alone – she’ll be watched carefully by Mrs Wheeler.

Serena belittled in front of the others and not allowed to attend any upcoming meetings either. Serena is allowed to head into the back unsupervised and feed Noah, given she intentionally chose not to take a bottle with her. Serena runs for it. She manages to hitch a ride from someone who speeds away.

After the attack over Gilead soil, the Commanders join together to pat each other on the back and congratulate themselves for a job well done. In fact, the Ambassadors from China, Russia and North Korea have all offered their congratulations too. The attention soon turns to June Osbourne though, where some of the men deliberate over whether to take care of June once and for all.

With the protests getting more and more hostile, the group gather and pay their respects to the fallen soldiers who lost their lives over Gilead. Unfortunately, someone in the crowd open fires. June grabs Emma, Elijah’s daughter, and protects her while diving to the ground. Bullets symbolically rip through the American flag.


The Episode Review

Things are just staring to pick up now and in many ways this season has been a bit stop/start with its momentum and plot progression. Serena and June’s stories have essentially run parallel to one another before the questionable chapter where June dropped everything and decided to help her rival.

Despite that though, The Handmaid’s Tale has been a decent watch this year and the ending hints that next week’s finale is going to be quite the shocker. With the show already renewed for a sixth round and the showrunners confirming this is moving into tying into  The Revelations, The Handmaid’s Tale looks ready to end things with a bang.

In the meantime, we get some closure between June and Nick, while the series continues to deliver symbolic visuals, especially that ending with bullet holes ripping through the US flag. This hasn’t been the best season but it’s been a decent one all the same.

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You Can Read Our Full Season Review For The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Here!

 

  • Episode Rating
    (3.5)
3.5

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