Serena (Yvonne Strahovski) in The Handmaid's Tale
5 Theories About The Fate Of Baby Noah On The Handmaid's Tale

Are June and Luke about to take on another kid?

by Ani Bundel
Sophie Giraud/Hulu

The Handmaid’s Tale began as a horror story about the loss of reproductive freedom in a theocratic society. However, since Season 2, it’s been the story of Serena Joy Waterford and June Osborne, two women on either side of an ideological divide. It was also physical, as Serena Joy believed herself infertile, while June could have children. But since Serena got pregnant, their relationship has been more complicated. So, what will happen to Baby Noah now that he’s out in the dangerous world of The Handmaid’s Tale?

Warning: Spoilers for The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5, Episode 7 follow. The penultimate episode of Season 5 was a two-woman tour-de-force, as Serena Joy gave birth in a barn in the woods of No man’s Land while June delivered her baby. The show contrasted it to life in Gilead, as June relived a flashback to her first birthing ceremony, where the wife used the handmaid’s actual struggle to pretend to be in labor. Unfortunately, there were complications — the wife was taken from the room, showing no signs of wanting to help the person who was giving birth to the child she was claiming. Although the bay survived, the handmaid did not.

At first, Serena pushed June away, and June, frutrated, left her in the barn to fend for herself. But then, determined to be better than what she’d witnessed in the path, June returned to Serena and helped her give birth to a healthy baby, Noah.

Serena insisted June take Noah and leave Serena to die. But June wasn’t having that; she convinced Serena to come with her to Canada, where she got her the medical care she needed at a hospital. But then, immigration showed up. Serena was arrested as an illegal border crosser and was forced to let her child go to Child Protective Services. The irony: The person who called immigration on Serena was Luke.

So, what now? Let’s run down the theories regarding Baby Noah’s fate.


June & Luke Will Take Noah

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Before June took Serena to the hospital, Serena claimed June she was an avenging angel from God. She also said she believed June was sent to her to take the baby, that June and Luke will raise the child to be a better person.

At the time, June rejected this framing, saying she would save Serena’s life for the sake of her child, who deserved his mother. But with Serena imprisoned and the baby now a loose end, it might be best for June to change her mind. She and Luke could take in Noah and raise him as their own, as Serena wished.


Baby Noah Will Be Adopted By One Of June’s Friends

In addition to their daughter, Hannah, who is still in need of rescue back in Gilead, Luke and June already have a baby to raise: Nichole. Nichole is being raised in a group setting, with Moira and Rita pitching in to help. They may not have the time or funds to afford to take on another baby.

But plenty of former handmaids in June’s circle lost their children and would likely jump at the chance of taking one from a former wife like Serena Joy. June could easily find someone willing to step up and adopt Noah, ensuring he would be raised right.


The Wheelers Will Take Baby Noah

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Serena ended the episode begging June for help and not to let her baby be taken away, but that doesn’t mean June will automatically get the child. There’s another couple who are going to be dead-set on taking this baby — a couple who has political clout and money to burn: The Wheelers.

A custody battle over Noah between the Wheelers and Serena, with June doing the fighting for the latter, would certainly be an ironic twist for the show.


Baby Noah Will Be Lost To The Foster Care System

The Wheelers aren’t the only ones who might swoop in and deny June a say in Noah’s fate. Should June hesitate —because Luke was the one who called immigration or because he thinks it’s justice to have Serena lose her child — Noah could easily be deep in the system by the time she acts, if she acts (let’s face it, she’s gonna eventually act).

Also, the Canadian government might not be keen to give the child to a former Gilead resident who waves handguns around in public, or to a person who is suspected of murdering the baby’s father — just to name a couple of arguments against June.


June Will Get Noah Back To Serena

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This is probably the outcome viewers want most, strange as that may seem. The experience in the barn changed Serena and June’s relationship irrevocably. (And poor Luke will feel like he was hit with whiplash when he discovers this.)

Serena isn’t wrong in seeing June as some angel, whether avenging or otherwise. She’s determined to do the right thing, and she knows Noah belongs with Serena. Her determination to show how much better she is than those in Gilead will drive her to do everything she can to reunite mother and child. After five seasons, audiences know when June decides to do something, everyone better get out of the way.

The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 continues Wednesdays on Hulu.