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Here’s Why The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Is So Short

The Handmaid's Tale Season 5 Episode 9The Handmaid's Tale Season 5 (Hulu)

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The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 feels like it went by so quickly with its finale being right here at our door. While Season 1 had 9 episodes, Season 2 and 3 both had 13 episodes. Then this slowed with its fourth season containing 10 episodes and season 5 following suit. So why only 10 episodes? Let’s take a look at what we know about why The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 is so short.

The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 Contains 10 Episodes

Season 4 also contained only 10 episodes, and despite people thinking that it was due to COVID-19, the reason was entirely based on a creative decision.

Showrunner Bruce Miller told IndieWire at the time: “From my point of view, [the decision] was 100% creative… Some storylines just seem to shake out as a 10-episode story, in my eyes…”

So, how about this year? Well, after doing a little digging online, it seems like there is no new explanation as to why Season 5 is short again. So we can safely assume that Miller’s creative decision was fruitful and stayed the exact same for this season.

Back when he was talking about season 4, Miller also told IndieWire that MGM and Hulu fully supported his desire for a shorter season. 

He told IndieWire: “Some storylines just seem to shake out as a 10-episode story, in my eyes…  I feel like it gives us a little more freedom because you can rely more on one propulsive element.” 

For him, this meant he could really delve into one particular storyline, rather than needing to juggle multiple ones. 

Based on the last two seasons, it’s also safe to predict that the final season of the show is also going to contain 10 episodes. However, with it being the final one, we’re hoping that we’ll be treated with a few extra episodes.

The Handmaid’s Tale Season 6 Will Be Its Last

Handmaid's tale finale

Credit: Hulu

According to Screenrant, Season 6 of The Handmaid’s Tale will be its last. It’s rumored that it will lead into a new series called The Testaments, which is based on Margaret Atwood’s Handmaid’s Tale sequel novel. 

The Goodreads synopsis reads: “With The Testaments, the wait is over. Margaret Atwood’s sequel picks up the story more than fifteen years after Offred stepped into the unknown, with the explosive testaments of three female narrators from Gilead. In this brilliant sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, acclaimed author Margaret Atwood answers the questions that have tantalized readers for decades. ‘Dear Readers: Everything you’ve ever asked me about Gilead and its inner workings is the inspiration for this book. Well, almost everything! The other inspiration is the world we’ve been living in.’ –Margaret Atwood.”

The Testaments
Credit: Goodreads

Regardless of how many episodes the next season is going to have, or if The Testaments is going to be just as short in seasons as The Handmaid’s Tale is, fans are divided on Reddit between disliking and liking this season, especially when it comes to June, herself.

Would you be friends with June? Do you like her as a person? from TheHandmaidsTale

Some people took to Reddit to say that even though this season wasn’t as shocking as the previous ones, it has been a very good one so far.

Can we just appreciate this season, real quick? from TheHandmaidsTale

What are your predictions for the finale? And do you think next season will answer a lot of our questions? Let us know!

My predictions for s6 from TheHandmaidsTale

Want to chat about The Handmaid’s Tale? Join our Discord server here or our Handmaid’s Tale Fanatics Facebook page.

    Valerie Anne is a Type 1 diabetic, mother, tree-hugger, self-proclaimed granola who loves a good horror story through literature, video games, and movies. She also streams art over at

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