‘The Handmaid’s Tale’: What Happened to the Waterfords in Season 3?

After two seasons of watching June Osborne simply try to survive the horrors of Gilead, season 3 of The Handmaid’s Tale showed her fighting back. The second half of the season included a daring escape plan hatched by June, her fellow handmaids, and a group of Marthas to get dozens of children out of Gilead. But season 3 marked huge changes for Fred and Serena Joy Waterford, as well. Here’s everything you need to remember about the Waterfords leading up to season 4.

Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) and Serena Joy Waterford (Yvonne Strahovski) in 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 3
Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) and Serena Joy Waterford (Yvonne Strahovski) in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 3 | Barbara Nitke/Hulu

Does Serena Joy leave Gilead?

Serena helped get Nichole out of Gilead at the end of season 2. Through the help of June and Commander Bradley, Emily and Nichole were whisked off to Canada. After a perilous journey, Emily and the baby make it across the border and seek asuylum.

Losing Nichole put Serena into a depression, even though she knew it was the best thing for the baby girl. Season 2 had taught Serena that he helped create a world in which women are oppressed, no matter how high in rank their husbands are. Her pinky finger was cut off for suggesting to Gilead leadership that women be allowed to read. But Serena made a 180 flip in season 3, going back on her decision to get Nichole out of the country.

In turn, Fred and Serena spend the first half of season 3 trying to get the baby back. The campaign to retrieve their daughter (who is biologically June and Nick’s, not June and Fred’s like the commander thinks) brings them newfound fame. Fred wants more power, as does Serena. But eventually her desire to get her daughter back overpowers the spotlight. They stay in Gilead for most of the season.

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Does Serena Joy leave Fred?

Serena and Fred’s marriage seems to improve this season. They have sex again, seemingly closing the emotional divide between them. But Fred eventually learns this was all part of Serena’s plan to get out of Gilead and back to Nichole.

In season 3 episode 11, Serena (with the help of U.S. representative Mark Tuello) concocts a plan to have Fred arrested in exchange for her immunity. They go for a long drive with Tuello, Fred not knowing what’s to come. When he’s arrested after crossing the border into Canada, he believes Serena is being arrested too.

He learns of Serena’s betrayal whilst imprisoned. Meanwhile, Serena gets to spend supervised time with Nichole, who has been in the care of June’s husband, Luke, and her best friend, Moira, since arriving in Canada. In the season 3 finale, Fred reveals what Serena did to orchestrate June’s pregnancy with Nichole and she is arrested for war crimes.

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‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 3 episodes you need to watch before season 4

If you want to catch up on The Handmaid’s Tale Season 3 without having to rewatch the whole season, Hulu suggests watching season 3 episode 1, “Night,” season 3 episode 5, “Unknown Caller,” season 3 episode 11, “Liars,” and season 3 episode 13, “Mayday.”

And if that doesn’t get you excited for the new episodes, the trailers will. One trailer for the upcoming season seemingly confirms Serena Joy is pregnant, against all odds. Fans will soon be able to learn her and Fred’s fate when the new season airs April 28.