‘The Handmaid’s Tale’: These U.S. States Are Untouched by Gilead

The Handmaid’s Tale Season 4 shows June Osborne attempting yet another escape from the Republic of Gilead. June was abducted by Gilead to become a handmaid, and she’s made several attempts to get away from the regime. So, what parts of the U.S. remain untouched by the totalitarian state?

[Spoiler alert: Spoilers ahead for The Handmaid’s Tale Season 4 Episodes 4 and 5.]

How did Gilead take over in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’?

Elisabeth Moss as June Osborne in 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 4 standing in rubble after a bombing
Elisabeth Moss as June Osborne in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 4 | Sophie Giraud/Hulu

RELATED: ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 4: Does Rita Miss Gilead?

The Republic of Gilead is the undesirable totalitarian nation that trapped June and the other handmaids into becoming property for the wealthy and powerful commanders and wives. While it seem like Gilead may take place in a nation not currently in existence, it actually took over the United States.

According to Bustle, Gilead started in a New England town, and the regime began after a congress bombing. This left the U.S. without many government officials, giving Gilead room to come in and take control.

In The Handmaid’s Tale, we see the U.S. fall into pieces through June’s eyes. She watches as her credit cards get mysteriously suspended, and she’s fired from her job. June later learns women can no longer hold property. While trying to escape with her husband and child to Canada, she’s captured and turned into a handmaid because of her ability to bear children.

Commander Fred Waterford and his wife, Serena Joy Waterford, played major roles in the development of Gilead as well. Flashbacks throughout the series show Serena in favor of a government that controls women and reproduction, though this, of course, also has negative effects on her.

What U.S. states are untouched by Gilead?

June and Janine running along train tracks in 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 4
Handmaids running in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 4 | Sophiie Giraud/Hulu

So, which states in the U.S. aren’t touched by the Republic of Gilead? It seems the leaders of the totalitarian state were able to seep in to most of the continental U.S. But Refinery29 reminds us what remained of the government were able to move to Anchorage, Alaska. Hawaii also remained unaffected. These two states appear to be the only ones.

Show creator Bruce Miller spoke to The Wrap about Gilead’s spread as well. “I think it was in Episode 11, where we saw the map,” he explained “Yes, Gilead has taken over the continental U.S., so all 48 states of the continental U.S.”

Miller then noted that the “Boston area” has a “very strong” Gilead movement, but there are plenty of other places where resistance to the regime is heavy. “So, Alaska and Hawaii are the United States, the two states that are united still,” he added. “And the rest of it has turned into Gilead with lots of pockets of resistance and unease and the places where the grip of Gilead is not nearly as firm.”

Where is June headed in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 4?

Madeline Brewer and Elisabeth Moss in 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 4
Madeline Brewer and Elisabeth Moss in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ | Sophie Giraud/Hulu

June is originally from New England, but she’s straying away from the New England territories in The Handmaid’s Tale Season 4. She and Janine continue their mission to find “Mayday” — the resistance network that will help them find safety. But much of Mayday, including who they are and where exactly they’re located, is unclear. In episode 4, Janine and June find a pocket of the resistance, but it isn’t Mayday.

In episode 5, June and Janine finally make it to Chicago, but it’s extremely dangerous. They find themselves right in the center of the war. Thankfully, June’s good friend, Moira, found her after a bombing. Now that June and Moira are reunited, we’re hopeful June can get across Canadian borders soon enough.

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