Good news – we can get new family and friends pour ourselves a dram and, through the magic of technology, enjoy it together! Each Saturday at 9:00 p.m., we’ll be LIVE blogging the episodes to bring you a two-screen experience into the world of Outlander. Like the Outlander Cast podcast, it will be SPOILER FREE for non-book readers.
Disclaimer: Life intervened this week (trip to the Big Apple!) and I was not able to join you in real-time. I assure you, I felt the pain of this episode right alongside you no matter when I watched. Let’s hug it out together via this reactionary recap. I’m going to need it after this one. How about you?[9:00 pm] Between the laundry list of content disclaimers and “previously on Outlander”, I’m not sure there’s enough anti-anxiety meds or wine to get me, or anyone for that matter, through this episode. I can just feel it. [9:02 pm] Whoa! Now that’s certainly a twist on the weekly title card puzzle – no cutaways to leave you pondering how it fits in and it’s future Claire and her daughter (I spoil not, but hello – red hair. I don’t need to.) in the future! I don’t know if I even care what the significance of the heron is here because my mind is reeling from seeing these two in 1954. Interesting choice! Side note: Toni Graphia penned “Faith”, which gives me a preventive comforting hug to what’s coming in this episode. [9:05 pm] Two minutes in, jaw agape, choking back tears . . . and, as a book reader, I knew what was coming. Anybody I’ve ever known in the medical profession always shares what a struggle it is to be on the receiving end of treatment when you’re used to being the provider. Now imagine that it’s your team of people, in your hospital, under this traumatic circumstance. Mother Hildegard’s sweet voice breaking through the chaos was what broke the levee on my tears. Side note: this is going to be a loooong hour on the tear ducts.
[9:07 pm] After my son was born, I recall the phantom belly sensation I’d have after months of rubbing on a growing tummy. But unlike Claire, I was lucid when my son arrived so could connect the dots to tell myself, “it’s okay – he’s here and he’s safe.” Her reaching down to stroke her belly and being smacked with the uncertain-yet-certain realization that her baby isn’t in there anymore was nothing short of gut-wrenching. [9:10 pm] Well played on the name game, Mother Hildegard. We’re on to the double entendre at work here. Also, Bouton just drew fresh tears as I remember fondly how my late lab mix, Maggie, used to curl up on my bed instinctively to keep guard when I was sick or hurt. Thanks, pup. I now don’t have complete faith that I can make it through this episode. See what I did there? [9:13 pm] Master Raymond!!! Like an episode of Sesame Street, this season of Outlander is brought to you by the color blue. I’m not ready to say goodbye to Master Raymond yet. Like all my favorite Claire and Jamie “keepers” – Murtagh, Mrs. Fitz, Mother Hildegard and others – Raymond is a good one to want by your side at all times. [9:16 pm] If we’re going through the five stages of grief, Claire’s most certainly moved on to stage two – unbridled anger. “I’m not sure there’s a sea deep enough.” – Claire, mic drop. [9:18 pm] Sweet, loyal Fergus to the rescue again. This public walk of grief set to Bear’s gorgeously emotional score and Magnus’ visible sympathy and, well, cue the tears again. And now Fergus is brushing her hair. Seriously, people? I can’t. [9:20 pm] The oil! Wow, Blake called that one with the significance of panning to it in the brothel when Fergus entered BJR’s room. Also, the sight of the spoons is too much for me to bear. I’m with you, Claire. Also, I know my timing is off but I’d still like to remind you again how much I love that robe. [9:22 pm] Oh fresh hell, we’re going to see this in flashbacks. Brace for impact. [9:23 pm] All of Caitriona’s acting in this episode is remarkable, but even the littlest things are doing it for me. Watching her eyes and head shift with the “Jesus Christ” in shock was such a genuine reaction to the start of Fergus’ admission. More importantly, Romann Berrux! I bow to you, little dude. This is incredibly heady and intense material for any adult – let alone a child – and you’re more than holding your own against those three times your age. [9:24 pm] You vile disgrace for a human, Jonathan Wolverton Randall. There’s a special place in hell for people who hurt children. Also, people imprisoned for violating children are the first to be attacked and killed by fellow inmates. If only we could fast pass BJR through the stones and into gen pop at a maximum security modern day prison. [9:27 pm] “If it comes to sacrificing my virtue, Mother, I’ll add it to the list of things I have already lost in Paris.” – Claire, in hands down my favorite line of the episode . . . and we’re only halfway through. [9:28 pm] Let’s call this lengthy entrance into the King’s chambers a much-appreciated “take a bow” moment for Jon Gary Steele as it gives us ample time to once again ogle his wildly impressive set designs for this season. [9:30 pm] Ew, the bed in the foreground. Chocolate and orange foreplay. This whole scene is making me feel skeezier than the dildo rentals scene at the brothel. But thanks, Bear, for throwing a couple notes of their love theme in here to remind me “Think Jamie. We’re doing this for Jamie. Jamie, Jamie, Jamie.” [9:33 pm] And the walk of glory for Jon Gary Steele continues. Is it wrong that I want that ceiling in my bedroom? [9:35 pm] Oh hell, talk about a test of morals. On many levels, Claire, I envy you. Here? Not so much. Also, Caitriona with the on-point reactions again! Her trademark Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ under the breath with the eyes shifting . . . I’m going to rewind that a few times for comedic value. [9:40 pm] Well hello, serpent, you finally make your grand entrance. I had wondered when it would make an appearance since it gets high billing in the season two opening sequence. Also, Master Raymond throughout this scene is cracking me up because he is glaring at Claire with surprised pride in a very Yoda-like way – “Strong in this one, the force is. Hmmmmmm.” [9:45 pm] Oh, snap. Well played, Raymond. But this scene belongs to Stanley Weber for me. We finally get to see him shine and do more than just throw villainous side eye at Jamie, Claire and, well, everyone. His voice got above a controlled whisper and his eyes showed fear. [9:48 pm] Vomit. I got so engrossed in this prosecution scene that I totally forgot about the method of payment. I think Claire did too. A two-pump payment and she thought of England the whole time. [9:49 pm] Bahahahahaha! You get you some vitamin C, girl. Claire snagged that damn orange as a souvenir like me coveting those mini bottles of shampoo from a nice hotel. [9:51 pm] The role of Jamie Fraser shall now be played by a gingered Ted Kaczynski, The Unabomber. But seriously, I think the always stellar props department might have taken the day off here. That thing – at least from this first angled glance – looks a little too much like what happens when you a paste a beard onto a 10 –year to play Abe Lincoln in the elementary school delivery of The Gettysburg Address. [9:57 pm] Just when I thought I’d recovered from the first half of the episode thanks to the distraction of the King’s little game of “would you rather”, my heart just broke all over again. How would you ever be able to say “when” in this moment? You wouldn’t, and it would take the strength of a trusted, dear friend to walk you through it. God bless you, Louise. I don’t care if it’s not accurate for the time period, in my mind Louise curled up beside Claire in this bed to cradle her after she handed Faith to Mother Hildegard. And you’re not going to convince me otherwise, because that’s what girlfriends do. [9:59 pm] I’ve decided I’m grateful for the beard because it forces your attention onto nothing but the expressive eyes on Sam Heughan’s beautiful face. And they’re working overtime on my emotions here thanks to their glassy shine bulging with tortured tears. Most importantly, though, if there’s any justice in the world, please hand Caitriona Balfe an Emmy and a Golden Globe now. Literally, now. I’ll wait. [10:00 pm] We’re going back to Scotland! Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ, it’s about damn time. France has been a toxic lover – one you think you can’t get enough of until you realize the insurmountable cost of the affair and the permanent damage it leaves in its wake. [10:05 pm] Ugly girl crying, right here. I know I’m not alone. I thought “To Ransom a Man’s Soul” was the most emotional and raw hour of television I’d ever experienced . . . and then I saw “Faith.” Maybe it’s because it was too close to home as a mother, a wife, hell – a human being. Maybe it’s just because it was a damn-near-perfect episode of television. Between the content, the acting and the score, it’ll be quite some time before the sting of this one diminishes. In ONE hour, we’ve seen in painstakingly real detail the emotional toll of rape, loss, grief, the start of the long road to recovery and so much more that I can’t put into words. To which I say, thank you, powerhouse Outlander team. You’ve done it, again. FIVE well-deserved kilts.
Episode 2.05: “Untimely Resurrection”
Episode 2.06: “Best Laid Schemes…“
Episode 2.07: “Faith”
Episode 2.08: “The Fox’s Lair“
Episode 2.09: “Je Suis Prest“
Episode 2.10: “Prestonpans”
Episode 2.11: “Vengeance is Mine“
Episode 2.12 “The Hail Mary“
Episode 2.13 “Dragonfly in Amber“