The Handmaid's Tale Stars Ann Dowd and Madeline Brewer Dissect Aunt Lydia's Major Party Foul

TVLine | 6/13/2019 | Kimberly Roots
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Aunt - Lydia - Savage - Beating - Janine

Aunt Lydia’s savage beating of Janine in this week’s The Handmaid’s Tale might’ve seemed to come out of nowhere, but series star Ann Dowd says the attack actually began way back in the Season 2 finale.

When Emily stabbed the older woman and left her for dead, the incident affected Lydia “on a number of levels,” Dowd says. “She prides herself on knowing these handmaids. Who’s unstable? Who’s dangerous? Who do I need to keep a closer eye on? Every night at home, she goes through the day, she goes through the handmaids. It is her sole responsibility, and to think that she misread it shocks her. She’s appalled and blames herself for missing the boat.”

Interviews - TVLine - Dowd - Madeline - Brewer

In separate interviews, TVLine spoke with Dowd and co-star Madeline Brewer, who plays Janine, to break down the unsettling scene.

TVLINE | In your opinion, what’s running through Aunt Lydia’s head right before she begins beating Janine?

DOWD - | - Emily - Attack - Fear

DOWD | [After Emily’s attack], she has fear now… She doesn’t know which way to go. She loves sweet Janine, loves her, but things trigger [Lydia]. Janine starts to fall apart. She always does, and usually Lydia can manage it, but now she doesn’t have her sea legs. So she overreacts. She reacts emotionally, which before, no. She knew as a teacher, no, step back, don’t lead with emotion. Make a strong decision. She doesn’t have that at her fingertips any longer.

TVLINE | It feels like the show sets up a precursor to the attack at the Putnams’ home in Episode 1 of this season, when June tries to help Aunt Lydia up the stairs at Commander Lawrence’s house and...
(Excerpt) Read more at: TVLine
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