‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Pits Elisabeth Moss Against Yvonne Strahovski for Season 5

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When The Handmaid’s Tale returns, June will be gearing up for an all-too-familiar battle.

The trailer for the fifth season of Hulu’s hit dystopian drama sets Elisabeth Moss’ starring character up against her living former abuser, Serena (Yvonne Strahovski). Though at times throughout the Gilead-set series, the two women have had their moments of allyship, the teaser trailer that dropped Thursday (watch below) suggests that the two women at the center of the show will once again be standing firmly on opposite sides of the war.

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This fight is as much universal as it is personal, as June killed Serena’s husband, Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) in the epic season four finale. Now that she’s escaped and reunited with her husband, Luke (O-T Fagbenle), in the safe neighboring harbor of Canada, June says she still feels “Gilead pulling me back” — words that are accompanied by an image of her lover Nick (Max Minghella), a current Commander and the father of her youngest daughter, Nichole.

“I want her to know that it was me,” says June, as she witnesses Serena appearing to play the role of grieving widow. “She knows the world is watching.”

Indeed, the image of a grieving Serena blasts across TV screens the size of Times Square billboards. To the camera, however, viewers can catch a quick glance of Serena smirking.

“She can’t get to you, so you’ve just got to forget about her,” says Luke to no avail, as June remains steadfast in her quest for vengeance. The trailer wraps by making it clear that Gilead will not ignore the act of June, a former Handmaid, killing her Commander, as Luke is also seen being pulled away and June cradles Nichole.

“You want to fight? Let’s fight,” says June in the final moment, as the trailer ends, wrapping its rendition of Christina Aguilera’s “Fighter.” The new season releases Sept. 14.

The finale had left June’s fate up in the air, with showrunner Bruce Miller and Moss each speaking about the intentional ambiguity and open possibilities for season five. Would June stay and risk her newfound freedom, go on the run after what she did, or risk it all and return to Gilead for a fight?

The official synopsis for season five reads: “June faces consequences for killing Commander Waterford while struggling to redefine her identity and purpose. The widowed Serena attempts to raise her profile in Toronto as Gilead’s influence creeps into Canada. Commander Lawrence works with Aunt Lydia as he tries to reform Gilead and rise in power. June, Luke and Moira fight Gilead from a distance as they continue their mission to save and reunite with Hannah.”

When speaking to THR after the finale, Moss said: “Her life is about this war. And her life is about creating a better future for her daughters. That is her purpose and, let us not forget, she still has a daughter that is in Gilead. This show is about the first episode with that first scene where her daughter is taken away. This show is about a woman creating a better future for the next generation and, specifically, for her own children.”

The MGM Television-produced, Emmy-winning series will also see the return of Bradley Whitford, Samira Wiley, Ann Dowd, Madeline Brewer, Amanda Brugel and Sam Jaeger; Alexis Bledel will not be returning.

The Handmaid’s Tale is executive produced by Miller, Warren Littlefield, Moss, Daniel Wilson, Fran Sears, Eric Tuchman, Yahlin Chang, Rachel Skukert, Sheila Hockin, John Weber, Frank Siracusa, Steve Stark and Kim Todd.

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