Ach, Droughtlander. That inevitable purgatory between Outlander seasons. What’s an Obsessenach to do? (You know, besides obsessively stalking social media for even the slightest tidbit of what’s happening in Scotland on set? Because, yes, the gods be praised, they are FINALLY starting to shoot season 3!)
Why, obsessively rewatch
Season 2, of course, and create what is now officially my annual post on the best Outlander lines (or dialogue sections because this is not really a one-liner show). Season 1 was ripe
for the picking IMHO. Season 2, which I didn’t love quite as much
, was a little trickier. But here, without further ado, are my picks. Let me know if you agree or if I left out one of your faves. After all, we’re all in this Droughtlander together!
Episode 1: “Through a Glass, Darkly:
I could have chosen this for the photo alone of Jamie and Claire together privately for the first time since season one, but the conversation also sets up Season 2 and reminds us that, regardless of all that other Frank and 20th century stuff we just lived through in this first episode and are already angsting about for Season 3, Jamie and Claire are it. And they know it.
Claire: What are you thinking?
Jamie: I’m thinking it’s not a very honorable path you have us on. We’d be lying to my cousin, lying to everyone.
Claire: You have to remember what’s at stake, saving thousands of lives.
Jamie: Even if the price is our souls?
Claire: That won’t happen. You have to trust in this.
Jamie: In this I do and in this I will.
Episode 2: “Not in Scotland Anymore”
I probably could have made a post comprised entirely of Murtagh-only moments because, let’s face it, the enhancement of his TV character over the book character is one of the brilliant moves the show’s writers have made. And in season 2, Murtagh shines with many of the best lines. This batch comes after he and Jamie are practicing dueling in the park, much to the amusement and derision of the French high society watching these silly sweating men.
Look at me. Out of breath already after hardly an hour. It’s the air. Arses and armpits. Too many people. This city reeks of the chamber pot.
Episode 3: “Useful Deceptions and Occupations”
Ah Mary. So sweet. So innocent (at least in the beginning). So… not French. And Louise — can we just take a moment to revel in this woman’s wonderfulness? Claire Sermonne nailed it as Louise de Rohan.
Mary: Men don’t do that where I come from.
Louise: And where is that? The moon?
|Photo courtesy: Outlander Homepage
Episode 4: “La Dame Blanche”
While this episode also includes Louise saying to Claire, upon telling Claire she is pregnant by her lover, “You mean sleep with my husband? But my love would be furious!“, it’s not my overall pick. For that, I have to go with Jamie’s speech, lifted mostly from the wonderful original words of Diana Gabaldon’s book on the effects of Wentworth and his struggles simply to make it through each and every day. This whole scene was so heartbreaking and so well done by Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe.
It was this place inside me, a place everyone has inside. A fortress where the most private part of you lives, your soul, that bit that makes you yourself and nobody else. But after Wentworth it was like the fortress had been blown apart…That’s where I’ve been ever since, Claire. Naked, alone, trying to hide under a blade of grass
And then later after Claire goes to Jamie and they literally reunite for the first time —”Come find me, Jamie. Come find us
Jamie to Claire: “Remember I told you I was lost? Well, I think you’ve perhaps built me a lean-to at least and a roof to keep out the rain.”
Episode 5: “Untimely Resurrections”
How many of you wanted to reach in and shake Claire during this scene in which she’s asking — no, let’s be fair, telling — Jamie to hold off killing Black Jack Randall for a year? I may or may not have been yelling at the screen telling Claire to please stop caring about that SOB. That might have happened. Might. Anyway, the first part of this quote is where Jamie says, “Him or me. You have to choose.” Why oh why is this even a choice??? (And, yes, I’ve clearly read the books so I do have some other Frank info that influences my yelling astute analysis.)
Jesus God Claire! You’d stop me taking vengeance on the man who made me play his whore? The man that lived in my nightmares, and in our bed, that almost drove me to take my own life? I’m a man of honor. I pay my debts so tell me now is that what you’re ask of me. To pay you with the life of Black Jack Randall?
A year. Not one day more.
Episode 6: “Best Laid Schemes”
This is a roller coaster episode for sure, ending with the crash of the duel and the miscarriage. But before we get there, a few minutes of levity and happiness do occur. We’ve got more Murtagh wonderfulness that I can’t ignore, including: “Your mind changes like a woman in flux
” after Jamie says the duel is off and, as he’s being dressed to be a French highwayman: “If I do happen to get caught, would you be so kind as to kill me? I refuse to be hanged in this
.” And we’ve got the Prince in one of my fave “Mark me” moments: “Mark me. I will take my own life if I am forced to go live in Godforsaken Poland.
But the line I’ve got to choose is Jamie, talking to the baby bump. Because… well, who needs an explanation?
Jamie: It’s your father. I can’t wait to meet you.
Episode 7: “Faith”
This is Claire’s episode all the way. Caitriona Balfe nails it every second she’s on screen. Is there any moment more gut-wrenching than when she is asking for her baby? Or the utter despair when she is asked to confess her sins during last rites and she responds, “My sins are all I have left.”
But I’m going to highlight the scene between her and Jamie at the end when they are finally — and tragically — reunited, desperate to find their center again and unsure if they ever will.
Jamie to Claire after her gutwrenching admission it was her fault:
“I asked for your forgiveness once. You said there was nothing to forgive. The truth is I already forgave you long before today for this or anything else you could ever do.”
Episode 8: “The Fox’s Lair”
Let’s be clear, the one redeeming moment of this entirely useless episode: Jamie talking Gaelic to Jenny’s baby and Jenny’s quote about how you can say things to a baby you can’t, especially if you’re a man, say to anyone else. And also because this GIF can now be available forever. You’re welcome.
You can talk to a wee one like you can’t talk to anyone else.
Episode 9: “Je Suis Prest”
We were treated to lots of great Claire-Dougal repartee in this episode.
Claire when Dougal returns: “It wouldn’t be Scotland without you”… followed by an eye roll at Murtagh as Dougal’s talking.
And then later, when Dougal tries to blackmail her to help him get Jamie to change his mind about how to handle this battle:
“Let’s get one thing clear — if I ever thought of you, I might hold a grudge. But I don’t. Stop trying to convince everyone of your patriotism. I’m not sure you’ll grasp the meaning of this either, but fuck yourself.”
But for importance, I’m going with Claire and Jamie’s chat after she finally realizes/admits she’s got PTSD. This add-on to the TV adaptation was a good idea, in general, and this moment is another (of the sadly few in this season) where we see the depth and solidity of Jamie and Claire’s relationship.
Claire: If I go back, it will be just like lying in that ditch again, helpless and powerless like a dragonfly in amber. Except this time it will be worse. Because I’ll know the people out there dying alone are people I know, people I love. I can’t do that. I won’t lie in that ditch again. I can’t be helpless or alone ever again.
Jamie: I hear ya. I promise whatever happens you’ll never be alone again.
Claire: I’m going to hold you to that, James Fraser.
Jamie: You have my word, Claire Fraser.
Episode 10: “Prestonpans”
This episode gave us a few good Bonnie Prince moments with Jamie — notably, his suggestion that Jamie tell Claire to tend to the wounded British soldiers first rather than the Highlanders after the upcoming battle:
Jamie: “As your friend, don’t talk of such things… nor do I believe my wife would follow such an order.”
“From your prince, no. But surely Lady Broch Turach would from her lord and master.”
HAHAHAHAHA. Awesome Jamie eye roll. Perfection.
And then when the Prince notes, after Jamie suggests he remain in the back so nothing happens to him because Jamie would hate to have to tell his father the bad news, “Mark me. I don’t think my father is that fond of me.”
But I’m going with Jamie and Claire’s amazing goodbye scene as he goes off to Prestonpans. Not only because it is one of the very few intimate scenes
we got with them this season, but also because the dialogue is something that echoes throughout both seasons, starting in Season 1 when she says to Jamie “On your feet, soldier
.” I love that — and of course we see it in the episode finale when Claire bade Jamie goodbye with this variation, “Rest easy, soldier
.” And then, there’s the Jamie bow. Oh. Dear. God.
Claire to Jamie as they kiss each other good bye: “On your way, soldier.”
Episode 11: “Vengeance is Mine”
Like Murtagh, the Duke of Sandringham has been one of the great characters in Seasons 1 and 2, so brilliantly played by Simon Callow
. I will so miss his absolutely perfect delivery of what, in another actor’s mouth, might be a mundane line. A particular fave this episode: “The last thing I would do, my dear, is to blurt
And this episode has another moment of Murtagh levity when he and Jamie try to decipher Claire’s Gaelic-coded message. “She’s even misspelled help!” he exasperatedly says.
But the line I’ve chosen is a more serious Murtagh line. As Jamie’s godfather, he has taken his role as protector very seriously, and the rape of Mary Hawkins and the near-death of Claire and his perceived failure to keep them safe have weighed heavily on him. Finally, he gets to settle the score with Sandringham.
Murtagh: “I kept my word. I lay your vengeance at your feet.”
Episode 12: “The Hail Mary”
This battle of the brothers — the final moments between Dougal and Colum, and Black Jack Randall and Alex — is epic and filled with many wonderful sequences of dialogue. Dougal’s soliloquy to Colum is just one example I wrote about in a post about these brothers
. But I’ve got to choose Colum’s last words to Jamie as this episode’s winner. As often happens with someone on the brink of death, Colum sees clearly here and it’s beautifully expressed.
Colum to Jamie after he has told Dougal he wants Jamie to lead the clan until his son is of age:
“My poor brother. I have lived my life crippled in body, and he has lived his crippled in mind.”
Episode 13: “Dragonfly in Amber”
And finally, this. Because when all else is said and done, Outlander
is the story of Jamie and Claire. Period. And this quote sums it all up:
Jamie at the stones, saying goodbye to Claire, and after listing his many supposed sins and wrongs:
“But when I stand before God, I’ll have one thing to say to weigh before all the rest. Lord, ye gave me a rare woman and God! I loved her well.”
So do you agree with these lines? Did I miss some of your favorite lines? Share in the comments and help us all survive Droughtlander together!
This was wonderful! Thank you for highlighting such wonderful moments of season 2
Loved all of these!
Loved all of these!
GREAT post Janet.. I agree with a lot here.. ohh how I love these books and show.. going to have to think on my faves now lol..
Two spots I disagreed on was first in ep 9 .. I never liked Claire saying that Dragonfly in Amber line.. I liked the rest of it and what Jamie said there and the tenderness of the moment.. but her actually using the words Dragonfly in Amber felt like a forced Easter Egg and too "on the nose" and unnatural for the moment to me.
The second spot was ep 11 .. Vengence is Mine .. my favorite scene and dialogue by far.. possibly not just of that episode but probably top 3 of the season .. was Jamie praying for Claire and the brief dialogue that followed .. Loved loved loved that! Thankfully Diana wrote tjat episode or we would have never got that moment I'm sure
Loved these! Spot on! One I loved – right before the makeup sex in Season One. Jamie says to Claire, "You are my home now." (Chest tightens and tears are in freefall).
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Sorry – had to delete the previous comment because I don't see an edit button, and I can't type! Anyway, I agree about the Dragonfly in Amber line. It jerked me right out of the scene and into the book title. 🙁
Basically any line uttered out of Murtagh's mouth wins for me. Crushing. HARD.
Thanks so much Jessica. It was fun to rewatch–for research purposes only of course. 🙂
Thanks E. Jamie. Did you have a favorite?
Angela–Yes Vengeance episode. One of my top for the season and thank you DG for te original material in general. So much so good. I think your Dragonfly in Amber comment is certainly worthy. Sometimes less is more, right?
Excellent choice Anne. Forgot that one…..which is too bad. Thanks for reminding me. It was definitely worthy
Seriously Ashley. Murtagh was one of the best parts of season 2 episode after episode. I realize he had to be given the dialogue to make it happen but Duncan Lacroix played him perfectly. So many good lines!
I haven't re-watched Season 2 so I'm sure there are many good lines I don't recall right now, but I like the lines you've chosen. My favorite is the one you selected from Episode 13: "But when I stand before God, I'll have one thing to say to weigh before all the rest. Lord, ye gave me a rare woman and God! I loved her well."
It doesn't get much better than that.
Totally agree EbonyRaptor…..and if you haven't read the book, the way it's done there is especially good too.
Totally agree EbonyRaptor…..and if you haven't read the book, the way it's done there is especially good too.
This review reminded me of all we missed in this season. The powerful first physical reunion after Wentworth where Jamie realizes he is capable of being with Claire, the next powerful reunion after they lose baby Faith and their final heartbreaking passionate encounter before she leaves him at the stones. Plus all their humor together. With such extraordinary source material and dialogue, it's confounding that they squandered precious time having them squabble and encounter Laoghaire so far ahead of schedule.
I agree with you. I had a harder time finding best lines this season than I did last year when I did the round-up. Onward to season 3—an easier book to adapt so that might help. The key is getting back to Jamie and Claire as the center!
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I agree with your favorite lines. My favorite is the scene at the stones in Dragonfly in Amber. Heartbreaking, but the best.
I think you hit the highlights of S2, but my favorite is when Jamie returns from Madam Elis' all hot to trot and ready to get back to Claire, but is met by her rage noting the bite on his thigh! Jamie, after three years of marriage doesn't understand why she is so angry. I don't have the dialog memorized…yet, but for laugh out loud humour it beats everything in the season. Although I certainly love Jamie and Claire's love relationship, this depicts an all out war where both play fair. Jamie is such a newbie at marital war, but Claire is well schooled in the game. Let's face it don't we all love their ability to find a way back to each other?
AWESOME picks…perfect. My fave is "But when I stand before God, I'll have one thing to say to weigh before all the rest. Lord, ye gave me a rare woman and God! I loved her well."..I cry everytime I see it, or hear it. And now they have it on the trailer for season #3..so I get to cry quite often these days. LOVE OUTLANDER..new to it, only 3 weeks since I found it on a day I was bored and thought "what the heck" I will watch one show..LMBO. Have watched season 1&2 now 4 times and reading the books too. take care..
I think you have hit on all of my favorites and glad to hear I am not the only one that thought Episode 8 -"The Fox's Lair" was a useless episode.
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Janet, how did I miss this? I'm glad it was re-released. I'll go in order of which I cared most about:
Ep 5, I would have added Jamie's next line, possibly my favorite in the season to that point: Do.Not.Touch.Me. I believe I jumped off the couch and yelled, Jamie's back. It was nice to see Jamie masterful again – and Claire more powerful when they are equals, as we all told RDM she would be ;-). On the subject of which, I probably liked that he got to choose when he was getting touched for a change, instead of the production team (whoever did that choosing.) Sam was stunning with all that whole dialogue, in a season where he didn't always have the best material to work with.
Ep 4: I had two problems. First, that Jamie said YOU built me a lean to which spoke to a flaw in the whole season for me, it should at least have been we. Second (probably first), CAUTION for those who don't like to read details about sexual functions – there really should have been a line from either or both of them to the director saying, "Wait!!! Neither of us had an orgasm yet, last season everyone had one, every time! What is happening to this show!?"
Misc: I don't know how you could have chosen from Louise's lines, ditto various in Ep 13, and I loved the Dove poem.
I also didn't like the Dragofly in Amber quote.
I don't remember it exactly, but I liked it when Jamie says "Smooth, but to rid yourself of such a lovely forest."
Im new to the show. Man am I hooked.I love it all. Couldnt pick just one favorite.
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I can't disagree with any of your picks, Janet. What a fun read! Outlander is an epic for sure; it swallows me broken and returns me back whole, every time. I also like YOUR summation: "Because when all else is said and done, Outlander is the story of Jamie and Claire. Period."
I’m looking for the dialogue by Jamie at the stones, last goodbye the two hundred yesrs of purgatory………Lord you gave me a rare woman….
I want to have it framed