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Hippolyta Freeman is one of the main characters in Lovecraft Country. She is portrayed by Aunjanue Ellis.

She’s been a housewife most of her life with dreams of getting into some adventures of her own, despite her husband’s misgivings. Her itch for adventure will eventually, literally and figuratively, take her to the stars and beyond.

History[]

Biography[]

She is Atticus’ aunt and George’s wife. She has a deep appreciation for astronomy, but routinely has to set aside her vision of who she wants to be. When Hippolyta was a child, she named a comet Hera’s Chariot. That credit officially went to the niece of an astronomer in Sweden. Hippolyta won the astronomical society’s naming contest, but they didn’t want a colored girl to be the face of their competition.

Throughout the Series[]

Season 1[]

Sundown[]

Hippolyta and George lay in bed and discuss George's plans to leave for another guide trip tomorrow. Hippolyta offers go in George’s place given that she’s also written reviews for the guide, arguably the best reviews. However, George argues the roads are a dangerous place for a woman to be on her own, so he insists that he go. She tries to get up to begin the day, but George pulls her back in bed to have sex. Afterward, they rush into the kitchen after hearing Dee scream to discover that Atticus has returned home.

Hippolyta and Dee go over the check-list before letting George leave for the guide trip. Dee gives George one of her travel comics, designed after her mother, and they part ways. Later that night, George calls Hippolyta from Marvin Baptiste's house and tells her that they'll go on the next trip together.[1]

Holy Ghost[]

Several weeks have passed since George's death. Hippolyta applies her makeup and gets ready for the day ahead. She takes George’s favorite book, Dracula, and starts tearing pages out. She then joins Atticus and Dee in the kitchen. Atticus reveals that the printer called for the new addition to the guide and that he sent them in. They were about a month overdue. Dee wants to check the scrapyard for robot parts later in the day, but Atticus is leaving.

A few days later, Hippolyta goes to Leti's housewarming party. Leti is appreciative ow how much food Hippolyta brought. Hippolyta’s icebox is overflowing with food that people bring when they come to check on her. Hippolyta makes a comment about Atticus, leading Leti to suspect that he reminds Hippolyta of George.

Hippolyta goes searching for Dee. She calls out to her without response. She hears whispering coming from a nearby room where the door seemingly inches open on its own. Inside, she finds a gold mechanical model of the solar system sitting on the table.

Hippolyta returns home to find Montrose waiting on the curb. He helps her inside with the groceries. George’s favorite book, Dracula, falls out of the bag. Hippolyta claims that she spilled coffee on George’s copy. Despite seeing the body for herself, Hippolyta suspects that Atticus and Montrose haven’t told her everything about George’s death.[2]

A History of Violence[]

Hippolyta took Hiram’s orrery during Leti’s housewarming party and brought it home with her. She calls her father in hopes that he can tell her what galaxy can sustain two suns, such as that presented in the orrery.

Hippolyta and Dee join Tic, Montrose, and Leti on their trip to Boston. They arrive at the Museum of Science. Hippolyta and Dee go to the Light of the Universe exhibit. Hippolyta points to a comet she named Hera’s Chariot. However, that credit goes to Nancy Studebaker. The niece of an astronomer in Sweden. Hippolyta won the astronomical society’s naming contest, but they didn’t want a colored girl to be the face of their competition. Dee tells her that she should’ve fought for the credit and then exclaims to the entire room that her mother named the comet.

Hippolyta and Dee drive back to Chicago alone. Dee remarks that everything has been weird since her father died. Hippolyta notices Dee with George’s atlas, which she found in the glove compartment. Hippolyta notices that Devon County is marked as a no travel zone on the atlas and turns the car around, determined to get answers.[3]

I Am.[]

Three days ago, Hippolyta and Dee arrived at the Sons of Adam Lodge, where all that was left of it was a pile of rubble. Hippolyta looked over and saw the burned remains of Dee’s travel comic mixed in with the charred remains of the lodge. Present day, Hippolyta struggles with getting the orrery operational. She pushes it onto the ground in a fit of rage and suddenly comes to realize that the planets need to tilt based on how they rotate on their axis. In this realization, she manages to turn on the orrery. The lights flicker on and the top opens up, revealing a key inside and coordinates engraved on the machine.

Hippolyta is on the road to Kansas, following the coordinates from the orrery. On the road, she crosses paths with a young black woman on a bike and waves to her. Inside her lunch box, she finds Dee’s travel comic, Orithyia Blue. She arrives in Mayfield at the Winthrop Observatory. She inserts the key into the machine. Two officers enter the observatory and find her hiding. They question how she turned the machine on. Tic arrives and a scuffle ensues. One of the officers shoots the machine. This causes a portal to open, which Tic uses to get rid of one of the officers while Hippolyta shoots and kills the other. The two of them are then sucked into the portal as well.

Hippolyta finds herself on an otherworldly planet. She is approached by two armored aliens, who take her to a futurist white room, where she awakens to find two purple glowing devices implanted in each wrist. She attempts to leave but is barricaded inside by an invisible barrier. A towering black alien who refers to herself as “I Am” enters the room. She tells Hippolyta that she’s not a prisoner. Hippolyta struggles to find a way out. She wonders what her dad would say and recalls Gustav Mie, who warned of gravity ships in the future. She manages to get the doors open after finding the access panel but I Am intervenes. She asks Hippolyta who she wants to be and tells her to name herself. Hippolyta says that she wants to dance on stage with Josephine Baker and is given the opportunity.

Hippolyta suddenly finds herself in Paris, where she stumbles through the first set as one of Ms. Baker's backup dancers. After their show, Josephine cuts Hippolyta a break after her poor performance on stage and shows her the routine. The following night, Hippolyta performed on stage alongside Josephine once more, with whom she has become very acquainted with. For the first time, Hippolyta is tasting freedom like she’s never known. She sees what she’s been robbed of. She realizes that all she's ever been was the type of colored woman white folks wanted her to be. She feels as if they found a smart way to lynch her without the noose. Sometimes, she wants to kill white folks. She also hates herself for allowing them to make her feel small. Hippolyta exclaims “I am Hippolyta.”

Hippolyta lands in an African village. She is being trained in the way of the warrior. She charges at Nawi with a blade, but she is downed fairly quickly. Nawi intends to strip away their fear and lead them into battle against their oppressors. After defeating Nawi, Hippolyta leads the village’s warriors into battle against Confederate Soldiers. She beheads a man and explains to the women that they have every right to fight for their freedom. She then drops her blade, removes her helmet, and says “I am Hippolyta. George’s wife.”

Hippolyta is transported again. She finds herself in bed with her late husband discussing her travels through the many worlds. She comes to realize that she’s been shrinking for so much of her life. When she was a kid, she thought she was big enough to name something out of this world, but then she had just started shrinking herself. And by the time she met George, she was already so small. She thought that George would see her, but he just stood by and allowed her to shrink. He admits this is true. He now sees her for who she truly is. She replies “I am Hippolyta. Discoverer.” She then takes George’s hand and the two of them are teleported to an alien planet, reminiscent of that from Dee’s travel comic, Orithyia Blue. Before long, Hippolyta reconvenes with I Am, who tells Hippolyta that she is ready to be fully integrated into their society. She no longer needs the devices on her wrist but the change will be permanent. However, should Hippolyta choose not to change, she’ll be sent back to her Earth. Hippolyta would like to stay as she is no longer the same person, but Dee needs her.[4]

Rewind 1921[]

Hippolyta returns to her Earth to learn that Dee is dying from a curse. Christina uses Hippolyta's blood to reset Dee's curse to at least buy her another 24 hours. Hippolyta was on earth 504 for the equivalent of 200 years on their earth. She acquired infinite wisdom and intends to use it to save Dee. And so they drive to the observatory in Kentucky to retrieve the Book of Names from Tic’s family before it got lost in the Tulsa riots in order to heal Dee. It doesn't take long for to get the time machine up and running. There are upwards of 60 trillion parallel universes. They need to rewind to their Earth’s Tulsa in 1921. The computer needs a motherboard to give it instructions, so Hippolyta plugs herself up to the machine using the purple implants in her wrists. She uses the picture of Montrose, George, and Dora from 1921 to triangulate. She then warns them not to change anything in the past. Hippolyta plugs herself up to the machine and Tic, Leti, and Montrose travel back in time to Tulsa, 1921.

Eventually, Tic returns through the faltering panel as Hippolyta struggles to maintain its structure. Foaming at the mouth as the energy is too much for her to maintain. Her eyes glow white, her hair turns blue, and she levitates into the air as the portal holds, allowing for Leti and Montrose to make it through with the Book it Names.[5]

Full Circle[]

They make it home with Dee and the Book of Names. They carry her upstairs, and Tic recites the spell to unbind the book. It opens up to a page featuring Tic’s birthmark, and he and Leti lose consciousness and fall to the floor. Hippolyta and Montrose try to wake them up. It’s then that Hippolyta notices that Dee is healing. Tic and Leti then awaken, shortly followed by Dee, who’s arm remains decayed from the curse.

Hippolyta brings Dee something to eat, but she isn’t hungry. Moreover, she’s upset with her mother for leaving her. Hippolyta admits that she did leave Dee behind. Though, in her travels, she became who she always wanted to be. Eventually, she named herself “mother” and it brought her back to Dee.

They arrive at the Winthrop house, where they notice that a black family is moving in next door. Hippolyta shares with Dee her new issue of Orithya Blue, which she drew herself. She was taught by an artist named Afua. She offers to show Dee how to draw, but given her hand, Dee doesn't think she’ll ever draw again. Hippolyta tells Dee that time never stops and assures her that she will draw again. She then takes Dee into a room, where only machine whirring and clanging can be heard.

They prepare to leave for Ardham. As they get packed into Woody, Ruby arrives with a vile of Christina’s blood. The seven of them squeeze into Woody and sing “Life could be a dream” while on the road to Ardham. Hippolyta, Montrose, and Ji-ah mark the bridge in symbols and draw a line of salt. They suddenly find themselves surrounded by townsfolk with shovels and pitchforks. The trio attempt to fight them off but are outnumbered and taken to the ceremony, where they watch as Christina sacrifices Tic and becomes immortal. Leti then arrives and with Ji-ah's help, the two of them make the blood connection and strip Christina and all white people of magic.[6]

Personality[]

Hippolyta is kind, loving, and intelligent. When she was a child, she unofficially named a comet after winning the astronomical society’s naming contest and often writes well received reviews of George's guide trips.

Physical Appearance[]

Hippolyta is an older black woman with black hair and dark brown eyes.

Relationships[]

  • George Freeman - Hippolyta's recently deceased husband who she loved deeply and helped write the atlas.
  • Diana Freeman - Hippolyta's daughter from her marriage to George.
  • Atticus Freeman - Tic is Hippolyta's nephew through her marriage to George. While she loves him, she suspects that he isn't being all the way truthful about George's death.

Appearances[]

Season One

Quotes[]

I saw his body. The bullet hole where that sheriff shot him. And I know you and Tic took care of that vile man. I don't wanna know the details of that, but... What you told me happened... Something doesn't feel right. Tic's been staying here a month, and every day of it, I have this nagging feeling that he's not telling me something about my husband's death.

Hippolyta to Montrose, Holy Ghost

Now that I'm tasting it... freedom... Like I've never known before, I see what I was robbed of back then. All those years, I thought I had everything I ever wanted, only to come here and discover that all I ever was was the exact kind of Negro woman white folks wanted me to be. I feel like they just found a smart way to lynch me without me noticing the noose.

Hippolyta to Josephine, I Am.

We are here because we did not believe them when they told us our rage was not ladylike. We did not believe them when they said our violence goes too far. We did not believe them when they said the hatred that we feel for our enemies is not godlike. They say that to women like us because they know what happens when we are free, free to hate when we must, free to kill when we must, free to bring destruction when we must. That is our freedom, that is our prayer, no matter what they think of us after we grind them into the dust. That is our love! I am Hippolyta. George's wife.

Hippolyta to Montrose, I Am.

I think now I can name this thing that's been eating at me quietly, so quiet. Sometimes, I thought I was... tired, Sad, or... missing you when you were out on the road, but really, I was... I was angry. So angry. Because for so much of my life, I've been shrinking. When I was a kid, I thought I was big enough to have every right to name something out of this world, and then I just started shrinking myself. By the time I met you, I'd already gotten so small. And I thought you knew how big I wanted to be. I thought you saw me. But you just stood by and let me shrink myself more for you.

Hippolyta to George, I Am.

People think of time as a physical manifestation, but it really is, like so many things, in our minds. We get fixated on moments, stuck in them, but time... never stops. Pumpkin, I know you're angry with me, and you have every right to be. I let you down. But this moment will pass. I'll make sure of that, just like I will make sure that you will draw again.

Hippolyta to Dee, Full Circle

Gallery[]

References[]