“It doesn't matter what I think.”— Rita reluctantly advances her opinion.
Rita is a supporting character in the first season, and a main character in second and third seasons of the TV Series, as well as supporting in the novel. She was a Martha serving the Waterfords before their arrest and her escape to Canada.
In the TV series Edit
Before the Takeover Edit
After the Takeover Edit
In a conversation with Serena Joy, Rita reveals that her son perished during the war in the aftermath of the Sons of Jacob's coup d'etat, and that he was nineteen when he died. It is unknown which side Matthew fought on, although Serena's response suggests she assumes it was for Gilead.
In the Present: Season One Edit
Rita encounters Serena Joy in kitchen late one night, after Commander Fred Waterford sneaks June out to Jezebel's. Serena weakly insists that she was searching for chamomile tea, which Rita points out is in plain view on the other side of the kitchen. She nervously suggests that Serena might enjoy something a bit stronger "to settle the soul." Serena accepts and invites Rita to have a drink with her. They discuss Naomi's frequent complaints about how Angela keeps her awake at night, to which Rita states that she should appreciate each moment with her child, since they can be lost in an instant. Rita reveals that she lost her son in the war, and Serena quietly responds that she is humbled by her son's sacrifice.
When June is being escorted out of the Waterford's home by the Eyes, Rita appears shocked. June hugs her on her way out and whispers to her that she should look behind the bathtub. Rita does so and discovers the letters written by women in Gilead that June has stashed away, after receiving them from a Mayday contact.
In the Present: Season Two Edit
In the Present: Season Three Edit
Rita is seen with Serena outside the hotel where the Waterfords are staying as they prepare for their trip in the hopes of getting Nichole back. The two share a brief moment with Serena giving her one last blessing.
At Loaves and Fishes, Rita notices June nearby. They exchange a quick greeting at the carrot table before moving over to the potato table. Rita tells June that she heard what the Marthas were planning and told them she was in, helping in any way that she can. She asks if the plan was all her idea, and when June replies in the affirmative Rita is impressed. She tells June that she is a boss now and that she is proud of her.
Rita is among the Marthas who orchestrated the mass exodus of children from Gilead. She accompanies a fellow Martha to the Lawrence household. Rita guards the children as they are moved to the airplane. As Guardians scout the local area looking for Kiki, June instructs her to take care of the children as Marthas and Handmaids stay behind to distract them. Rita is on the plane when it takes off, and lands in Canada along with over fifty children. On the ground, she reunites with Ofglen, who introduces herself as Emily, and meets Moira and Luke for the first time, telling Luke about June's plan to rescue the children.
- Although the Marthas are said to be infertile and unmarried women, she had a son. This could mean that Rita is either postmenopausal or became infertile after giving birth.
Season One Edit
- "Birth Day"
- "Nolite Te Bastardes Carborundorum"
- "A Woman's Place"
- "The Bridge"
Season Two Edit
Season Three Edit