The Handmaid’s Tale plot hole: Fans uncover blunder with Fred Waterford bomb scene

The Handmaid's Tale: Trailer for fourth series released

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Season four of the Hulu series, The Handmaid’s Tale, saw June (played by Elisabeth Moss) finally escape the clutches of evil in Gilead. However, some eagle-eyed viewers have taken to Reddit after they spotted a huge plot hole regarding the shocking bomb scene from season two, and whether or not more Commanders and handmaidens should have died.

In the season two episode First Blood, a second Rachel and Leah Centre – a centre established to train and house future handmaidens and run by the Aunts – is opened.

At the opening ceremony, Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes), who oversaw the entire construction, is preparing to give a speech.

Most of the handmaidens and Commanders are in attendance, however, Ofglen #2 (Tattiawna Jones) enters the building with a suicide bomb, which detonates and kills dozens.

However, many fans have spotted a major error within the scene and have taken to Reddit to discuss the bombing.

One fan said: “How is it that Ofglen ran into a room solely of commanders, got very close to Commander Waterford and detonated the bomb?

“It only managed to kill a few of the men in the room, only injuring Waterford who she got very close to, but yet killed way more handmaids?

“We can see the handmaids were outside the room and ran away when Ofglen began charging in the room, we see in the show that only some of the handmaids were hit by some of the glass shards as they ran away,” they continued.

“It would be very unlikely that any of the handmaids were seriously injured…so how did only 20ish commanders die despite a whole room exploding, but yet so many more handmaids died-where were all these other handmaids.” (sic)

It was revealed in First Blood that the bomb killed 26 Commanders, 31 Handmaids, and injured several others.

The Reddit user continued, by adding: “Even if you take out of the fact that the commanders would’ve been seen first by medics/received better health care, where were these supposed handmaids that died?

“We know they were not newly recruited handmaids that died, i.e. may have been receiving training in the centre elsewhere, as there is a conversation in the vehicle where the handmaids discuss some of the various women that died,” they concluded. (sic)

Is this just an overlooked continuity error, or could Gilead possibly be covering up the number of deaths?

Other fans were quick to respond to the original post on Reddit, with one person explaining: “The way the blast radiates depends on the way it’s made, the substance that is burning & the type of container it is in.

“So if they used something commonplace in everyday use, then there will be an uneven distribution of the blast, giving unpredictable results,” they remarked. (sic)

However, another was quick to point out that we see in the episode there is a whole row of handmaidens on the upper balcony, so the viewer “assume those are the ones that died”.

Someone else agreed, adding: “You can see there’s a row of handmaids standing on a balcony overhead.

“You can see during the blast when all the other handmaids are running away, the ones inside the room are thrown against the glass wall. These are the ones who died,” they explained.

“It does seem unlikely to me that those women would die despite being above/on the peripheral of the explosion whilst there is a literal explosion/fire in the centre of the room,” another commented. (sic)

Whether or not the bomb scene was an error by the filmmakers, the scene was a shocking moment that expertly demonstrated how the Commanders’ rape and torture of the handmaidens destroyed them and pushed the women to such desperate measures.

The Handmaid’s Tale season four is available to watch now on Hulu in the US. Season four is currently airing in the UK on Channel 4, and continues on Sunday at 9pm.

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