Commander Joseph Lawrence is a recurring character in the second season of the TV Series. He serves as a Commander in the Republic of Gilead, as well as (presumably) being a member of the Sons of Jacob. He is married to Eleanor Lawrence and is the head of the fourth household in which Emily is enslaved as a Handmaid.
After the Takeover Edit
In the Present Edit
Season Two Edit
Emily is being led by Aunt Lydia to Commander Lawrence's house. He turns out to be different than the other commanders. He has a Martha with only one eye. His house is littered with books and artifacts. Emily is caught looking at a book by the Commander. He asks her what the penalty is for being caught reading and she says a finger. He tells her it used to be a hand.
When Emily is getting ready for bed, Commander Lawrence's wife enters. She tells her that he is responsible for the colonies. Lawrence comes to take her away but she tells him that she hates him. He locks her back in her room and tells Emily to come with him. She follows him into his study where he serves her a glass of wine. He asks her about her past but she tells him that God has called her to a higher purpose. He says that she doesn't believe that. He asks if she has a wife and a son and she says yes. He says that she must miss them.
Commander Lawrence refuses to participate in the very first Ceremony between he and Emily. He instead sends her back to her room. When Emily stabs and attacks Aunt Lydia, he becomes enraged as he had lied to Aunt Lydia about how the Ceremony went. Later, in the night, Lawrence takes Emily out for a drive; Emily thinks she is going to be punished and killed. However, Lawrence is revealed to be part of the resistance. He takes Emily to the designated rendezvous point that had also been designated for June and the baby Holly. A plot had been set up by other members of the resistance to help June escape Gilead; Lawrence wanted Emily to have her chance at an escape as well. He gives her a heartfelt farewell despite the fact that he will suffer the wrath of the Eyes. A military surplus vehicle arrives, and Lawrence and his driver leave as Emily is reassured by June that she is escaping Gilead for good.