(Spoiler alert: Please do not read ahead unless you’ve seen all of Season 1 of “The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Aunt Lydia was not messing around in Season 1 of “The Handmaid’s Tale.” And from the looks of things, Ann Dowd’s character is stepping up her game for the critically-acclaimed Hulu series’ upcoming second installment.
The Emmy winner spoke with TheWrap ahead of Wednesday’s Season 2 premiere about the harsh punishment Lydia has doled out to Offred/June (Elisabeth Moss), Ofwarren/Janine (Madeline Brewer), Ofglen/Emily (Alexis Bledel) and the other handmaids in Gilead and why that has helped Dowd develop her own theories about Lydia’s past. A backstory which viewers have yet to see, but might in the coming episodes.
“Yes, when you’re playing a character you think, ‘OK Episodes 1-6 are all about Lydia. And then we’ll bring in the other characters,’” Dowd says in the interview above. “But I trust the writers tremendously and I’m curious about it. However, I often wonder, was she very in love as a 13-year-old and did she get pregnant? And the shame, the shame, the shame. I remember, I was raised in a Catholic family and I think the first time I kissed a boy I thought, ‘Am I pregnant?’ There is so much, you know the anti-sex pill that you were given when you hit puberty from your parents being word.”
“So did she [Aunt Lydia] have so much shame that she just promised, ‘Listen, God, if you give me one more chance, I’ll never ever ever let you down,’” Dowd continued. “And she just shut off all sides of her except devotion as a way of saying, ‘I’m sorry. It will never happen again.’”
“The Handmaid’s Tale” Season 2 will be shaped by Offred/June’s pregnancy and her ongoing fight to free her future child from the dystopian horrors of Gilead. In the sophomore installment, Offred and others will fight against — or succumb to — the dark truth that “Gilead is within you.”
Watch Dowd’s entire interview above and check back at TheWrap Wednesday at 10:10 am PT for another interview with Dowd about the Season 2 premiere.
Season 2 of “The Handmaid’s Tale” will premiere with two new episodes on Wednesday, with subsequent episodes released every Wednesday, on Hulu.