Outlander Photo Recap S1E05, “Rent”-Pt. 2

At the next village they visit, Claire witnesses Dougal’s kindness to a man whose home was sacked by Redcoats and now can’t feed his family. He gives him and his son a sack of grain and invites them to the Extortion Cocktail Hour (ECH). Claire calls him out on appearing kind when he is really fleecing Collum and stealing from his clan. Dougal remains calm and says that if he is, it is clan business and not hers.

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NED’S FACE THO.

That night at the ECH, Jamie takes his shirt off instead of having it ripped off (his mending is excellent you guys, you can’t even tell) and Claire sits bored again until one word stands out: Stuart. This takes us to a Frankback and yeah yeah, OKAY.

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So no, Dougal is not an extortionist, he is a rebel, raising money to put Bonnie Prince Charlie on the throne and using Jamie’s back as propaganda. Claire is now confronted with a paradox. Does she intervene in history, or leave it alone? If you know Claire, you already know the answer.

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Her musing is interrupted by voices, and we get to use her snooping to overhear a convo between Jamie and Dougal.

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Basically Dougal thinks Jamie should want a Stuart king because it would save his “silly neck” but Jamie says his neck and his back are his own business, to which Dougal  replies that not while he’s traveling with him. Jamie knows he has nowhere else to hide and punishes this tree for no damn good reason.

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Claire comes down from her hidey-hole and they have a brief exchange where she says Dougal will keep using him, Jamie responds that yes, because it gets him what he wants and Claire asks why he lets him. Jamie responds simply that he is his uncle, that a man “has to choose what’s worth fighting for” and that Claire should know this. The looks they exchange are LEGEN…………………………………………………………….

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…………DARY, made all the sweeter by the fact that these are two souls once more connected in their circumstances: powerless, but making the best of it.We can see now that Jamie’s advice was given to Claire because he and she are in the same place. Jamie breaks the spell and says that it’s time to go to bed, but when Claire jokingly says he shouldn’t punch any more trees, he responds that “The trees are safe, Sassenach” and we get two more looks. Jamie’s is adorable, and Claire looks like she’s going to ignite.

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Where is my lacy fan? MY HEAD WILL LITERALLY EXPLODE WHEN THEY HAVE SECKS. Don’t expect a recap cause I will be dead.

The next morning they pack up camp, and Claire is still mulling over the inescapable outcome of the rebellion. She thinks that most of these men will die for a lost cause and it is depressing, you guys.

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I just focused on the cute horse until they went to the next scene, but imagine my disappointment when it turned out to be an emotional landmine that mad me want to barf with sadness. I’ll share, because it’s not Outlander if you don’t bemoan the nature of humankind via sadbarf at least once per ep.

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Two men crucified on the road, branded as traitors with a T cut into their bellies, and left to rot for over a week. Dougal orders them cut down, a solemn funeral is said, they are buried and that night, Jamie’s back gets a rest because now Dougal has a new awful story to tell. The mood is somber,  people contribute well, and Dougal is definitely going to hell.

They seem to be staying at an inn, because Claire has a bed for once, out of which she is awakened by noises late at night. Claire is no’ scairt, so she handles it the only way she knows how, by rushing to confront said intruder without thinking about consequences. GUUUURRRL.

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Silly Claire, it’s just Jamie sleeping on your doorstep LIKE PLATONIC GENTLEMEN FRIENDS DO when they are staking a claim on you like a magnificent ginger lion. No worries.

Jamie explains that the men downstairs in the taproom are “half gone with drink” and he wanted to make sure none of them wandered upstairs to try to get under Claire’s woolens. She laughs it off like it’s cute, except this has happened to her not once, not twice, but three times before. Poor Jamie is just playing the odds. Claire mentions that they are probably not feeling very friendly towards an Englishwoman and then she apologizes for stepping on him. There is a beat when this happens…

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NO ONE BLAMES EITHER OF YOU.  Even that door frame is probably squeeing with joy.

Because she is a polite lady, Claire points out that Jamie can’t be comfortable in her doorway and invites him into her room. His reaction is PRICELESS. He obviously thinks she is propositioning him.

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He tells her that he could not stay in her room with her because it would “ruin her reputation”. Claire’s reaction mirrors my own, which is–

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Claire says that he’s slept with her under the stars for weeks-him and ten other men. He gets very gruff and says that that isn’t the same at all. She says then that the very least she can give him the blanket from her bed, and what follows is THE sexiest exchange of bed linens in any series ever. I feel confident in this assertion.

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When their hands touched, I yelled out loud like I was lit on fire and someone had doused that fire with bees. You can’t tell from a screen cap, of course, but when Jamie touches her hand, his instinctively tightens and she starts. All praise to Cat and Sam for these subtleties.

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Jamie finally breaks the tension by telling her he’ll be right there. And then that sinks in.

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An eleventh-hour silent parting shot from Jamie. Imagine having to shut a door on THIS:

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Well played, Sir.

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*sigh*

Next day at breakfast, Jamie quickly finishes eating when Claire comes down the stairs and when she intercepts him to say “Hello Mr. McTavish” very sweetly, he just as sweetly replies, “Hello, Mistress,” and ducks out to see about the horses. Some men in the tap room overhear this and start to speak to each other in Gaelic, but Claire ignores them as she sits down to ask Ned why he let her think that he and Dougal were thieves. Ned plays it off.

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But Claire takes him by surprise when she tells him she knew enough Gaelic to make out “Long live the Stuart” and then proceeds to stick her foot into the mouth of history by telling Ned that it is a war they cannot win.

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Good job, Claire, cause no one THINKS YOU’RE A SPY OR ANYTHING. She tells him that history will “never record the name of another Stuart King, but it will record the names of the thousands of highlanders who died needlessly for a doomed cause”. When Ned says “History be damned,” she begins to get an inkling of what a hardheided breed she’s up against, but their conversation is soon interrupted by the sound of all hell breaking loose.

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Claire grumpily tends their wounds and gripes at “any excuse for a fight”.

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Then Murtagh shows up and tells her she was the excuse. The other clansmen had called her a whore, and that’s a right they haven’t earned in the Mackenzie book.

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Claire is strangely touched by this, and everyone else rushes to pretend it didn’t happen because they are dudes.

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<3

Outside, Rupert is once again regaling everyone with the heroic exploits of his todger and two women fighting over who he would infect pleasure first when Claire lands a doozy and tells him that if anything, she’ll believe “his right hand gets jealous of his left”.

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Jamie totally slides into view like he cannot even believe that came out of her mouth, and neither does anyone else, because they are silent and stoic for a few beats until this happens:

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Turns out Rupert’s never heard a woman tell a joke. Even Dougal laughs, and Jamie tells her she’s witty and once again SPARKSOMG.

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Jamie laughingly mentions that it will be a long ride before they reach Culloden Moor and we get another Frankback as Claire recalls visiting the site of the Battle of Culloden.

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It’s another dreary, depressing recitation of facts from the professor whose info I have to bullet because it makes me sad.

-The highlanders faced English cannons and mortars with mostly only their broadswords.
-Over two thousand highlanders died.
-Because they lost and the crown appropriated their property and outlawed their ways, it signified the end of the Highland Clans.

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Damn history indeed, Ned. As she remembers, Claire recalls that the war is but three years away from her current time, and wonders if any of the Mackenzie men she travels with are doomed to die in that field. Only time will tell.

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When they make camp that afternoon, Angus Mhor helps her untie her bedroll and when Claire asks to go wash at the river by herself lo and behold, permission is granted. Maybe she’s getting Dougal’s trust back after all?

Nope.  Ned gave her a hard look right before she asked and now we know why. Dougal wanted her alone at the river so he could confront her about her seeming intel on the Jacobites away from his men.

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He asks her who she is, and confronts her about her “strong political opinions” and what she has witnessed on the road, which, if she tells the English would get he and his men strung up. Claire denies she is a spy, and even as Dougal acknowledges that she very well may not be, he accuses her of sowing “the seeds of doubt” in his midst. Those are some stale seeds, Dougal. Hate to tell you. #sorrynotsorry

Claire finally breaks and admits to trying to save his life and it stuns him into silence.

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But he doesn’t get a chance to ask further because THIS.

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They forgot about him, but the young English officer has obviously been tracking them, and he brought friends. Dougal goes to draw his sword but immediately desists as he and Claire are surrounded, and he left his men behind. “Lieutenant Jeremy Foster, of His Majesty’s Army” introduces himself to Claire, glares at Dougal and once again asks if he can be of assistance.

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Dougal rushes in to give his own long, pompous introduction (“Dougal Mackenzie, War Chief and Brother to Collum, Laird of the Mackenzies and of the land on which you currently stand”) and to clarify that Claire is a guest of their clan. Lieutenant Foster breezily replies that Mackenzie or no, if he is holding Claire against her will, he will answer to him.

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And that is it. Fade to black. Our spleens must subsist until next episode.

Lastly: You guys. Thanks so much for all your sweet comments and funny responses. It makes this labor of love so much easier to do, when I know you all enjoy it.   Until the next one!

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Outlander Photo Recap, S1E05, “Rent”-Pt. 1

In two parts b/c I am a long-winded bastage. This goes to the halfway point.

Claire is lonely and she wants even inanimate bodies of water to know this, so she busts out her best rhymes, courtesy of J-Dizzle.

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But it seems fate has smiled on her! One Scots at least has taken time out from teasing the youngest member of the party about having sex with his sister to help her quote and so, a friendship of sorts is established.

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This particular Scotsman is Mackenzie Lawyer Ned Gowan, who handles the “records and the receipts” for Dougal. He takes everything in payment from grain to goats, but this year he is putting the kebash on live pigs. He coughs the entire time he is speaking to Claire and explains it happens every year, and she mentally adroitly diagnoses him with asthma and offers him thornapple (jimsonweed) in his pipe, which helps him. Dougal sees this and gruffly pulls up stakes to keep going.

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On the way, Ned tells Claire that he studied in Edinburgh and set up a successful practice, only to get bored and decide he needed more jokes about incest in his life, hightailing it up to the highlands and offering himself in service to Jacob Mackenzie, Collum and Dougal’s father, and being clan lawyer ever since. You can tell she likes him, but not enough to stick around.

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They stop for the night and Claire is treated to a joke about an old man making fun of his old wife (mirrors were scarce back then) while the rest of the boys roar. Dougal would have been one hell of a standup.

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Then she gets handed the single most horrific-looking meal in history…

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…and while she doesna flinch, her expression is clear enough to garner Angus Mhor’s disdain and the rest of the group making fun of her in Gaelic. She feels excluded, but comforts herself with the thought that she won’t have to put up with it much longer, because she is OUTTA THERE. Then this:

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Claire tells Jamie that the Mackenzies hate her. Jamie smartly responds that they don’t trust her, except for maybe Angus, but he hates everyone. Claire asks what he thinks of her.

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I always enjoy when they lift lines from the books, but Jamie telling Claire that he can see her emotions on her face here is perfect for the scene, and her reaction, as well. Hurt and a little less trusting of him, to which he responds with the #1 standard clueless dude’s response.

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Rookie mistake, Jamie. She didn’t want the truth, dummy. She wanted empathy. MEN EVERYWHERE, LEARN FROM HIS MISTAKE. No more flirting for our hero. Claire ditches him and gives him the 18th-century version of “I’ve gotta wash my hair”. Next day, new village, and people come to pay the laird his due through Dougal.

Dougal is affable and likeable, a man who obviously knows and appreciates his tenants, calling them by name and inquiring after their families, but obviously enjoying his status as laird in all but name.

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Claire gets bored after teasing Ned about once again getting live pigs, and wanders off exploring. She hears singing it and follows it to its source, the hut of one Donalda Gilchrest, who is cautiously courteous and asks if she can help her with anything. Claire then admits to being “idle” and this working woman has just the thing….

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She takes her to the source of the singing, women “waulking“ wool. They are all smiling as Donalda introduces her, but that smile pretty much evaporates when they hear her English accent. Still, she is determined to be friendly and then she innocently mentions the smell of the bucket Donalda pours out onto the wool and guys, it’s MAGNIFICENT.

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AHAHAHAHAHAH. I can’t explain how delighted I was with this scene. Women, if you ever doubted it, DO WHAT THEY HAVE TO DO. Hats off to you, 18th century Scots housewives. You were made of stern stuff. There is a bit of a standoff-

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But this is why Claire is our heroine, y’all. B*tch don’t crack.

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And suddenly, two centuries in the past, in the middle of a place she knows nothing about, she is admitted, if briefly, into a sisterhood and it means EVERYTHING.

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They then have a lovely (and verra strong, but don’t tell the men) drink afterwards in one of the huts and a nice chat. Donalda’s son cries and she mentions that he will not nurse because he is teething, and now that they gave the goat away for rent, there is no milk. Claire slyly asks the distance to Craig Na Dun, and finds out it is three days from where she is. Drinks and gossip done, it is time to fill the pee bucket again (that’s what the dram was for!) and Claire gamely joins in. I won’t screencap Catriona squatting here because she admitted it was embarrassing, but her smile as Claire is so impish and game that you just LOVE HER.

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And then Angus walks in on her.

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Oh Angus. You were a comedic foil there for a bit but now I kind of hate you. Claire goes from being relatively at peace and treated with respect to being told she’s a drunk who smells like piss and manhandled and shoved all the way back to camp. She gamely retorts that Angus is one to talk, but when she arrives she goes straight to the wagon and starts untying the Gilchrest’s goat. Donalda was good to her, damn it, and Claire is going to return the favor.

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Unfortunately for her, neither Rupert nor Dougal will part with the goat. Not only because he was given in fair payment, but because there is no way either of them will bend to her will in the presence of the villagers. A lot was said about Jamie being a symbol this episode (you’ll see later on), but Claire is as well. Openly walking about with a Sassenach prisoner gives Dougal status. It goes down like so:

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And Jamie watches, but wisely does nothing. For all that I sympathize with Claire, she is not thinking. She is just sick of everyone and can’t keep it in. Dougal notices everyone watching and immediately shames her, like the good control freak he is.

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Dougal growls at her that they are leaving, and poor Claire is so done. She is at the end of her rope and then magically, this happens:

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An Englishman here? And he’s cute? AND HE’S ENGLISH? Claire is as stunned as we are. Angus tells him to mind his own business, and he clarifies that he is speaking “to the lady” to which Dougal replies that “the lady is a guest of Clan Mackenzie”. The entire thing is very tense and Angus is very ugly.

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Even Jamie goes back for his weapon, and that is some commitment from a kid who is supposed to be in fear for his life of the English.

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Trust me to find an inappropriate time to fly my ‘ship flag, but you guys JAMIE ALREADY LOVES HER. He is totes risking his safety for her here, and my heart can’t take it oh God. Nothing happens, though because the Englishman is no fool. He looks around, sees he is outnumbered and wisely retreats.

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Claire looks both heartbroken at another lost chance for escape and pissed as hell at Dougal, who repeats that they are leaving. As they pack up, they fail to notice OMFG THIS:

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Dougal ye arsehole. Now you’ve done it. That is the look of a kid who is no going to forget you insulted Mummy. Dougal‘s head is elsewhere, though. At the village he kept inviting everyone to join him later for a drink, and that evening they do.

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Of course everything’s in Gaelic (I wonder if someone translates these? Yes!) and it seems pretty friendly until a conspicuous door closes and then Dougal gets intense, as if he is telling a scary story and everyone is riveted. All of a sudden he walks over to Jamie, who is drinking with his back to the group, seemingly uninterested and once again proves he is a cold, cold bastard—and that that shinty win and Jamie’s move at The Gathering weren’t forgotten.

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All are obviously horrified and none less so than Murtagh, who looks outraged and sad all at once, and stands up to do something until a very subtle eye from Jamie causes him to sit back down. Dougal’s voice rises and one by one, the villagers drop coins in Ned’s bag. Through the entire thing, Jamie sits still as a statue. Once it is all done, Ned and Dougal count the coins and say it’s okay for the size of the place, and the mood is tense.

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Dougal, being the utter bastard that he is, tosses Jamie’s torn shirt at Claire and tells her to mend it, and Claire’s reaction is instant and terribly satisfying to watch.

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Dougal is still a cold asshole, though, and he calmly takes a drink and responds that Jamie can wear rags for all he cares. I guess better to advertise his scars. GOD WHAT A PRICK. Claire, knowing how Jamie feels about his back, waspishly goes to pick up the shirt that she now says she will mend, when Jamie beats her to it, picking it up off the floor and saying he’ll do it himself.

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It is the first time we have ever seen Jamie truly angry, and the sight is upsetting to both us and Claire, who watches him walk away with the saddest little face, glares at Dougal, and walks out.

But of course Dougal could give less of a damn because he is AN ASSHOLE.

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Next day Claire has no guile whatsoever and exposes her suspicions that Dougal is lining his pockets behind his brother’s back to Ned.

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His deadpan flattery should tell her she’s on the wrong track but she ploughs ahead and feels pretty satisfied with herself, until Ned walks off and she sees Dougal staring at her as if he can read her mind. She considers that whatever trust she built up at Geordie’s death is now gone.  You’re a bright one, Sassenach.

What follows is weeks of desolate horse rides and Jamie sitting with his shirt off and Dougal being a total tit and I won’t screen cap it here because it looks exactly as you imagine. During this montage, Claire has a nice inner monologue about feeling like a prisoner in the open landscape, helpless and trapped. Doomed to live “among strangers, 200 years in the past”. Something finally breaks the monotony, but it’s nothing good. The Watch, a Scots protection racket/vigilante force of sorts, has discovered a royal sympathizer, and they pay their respects by burning his house down.

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You think Dougal is going down to help, but no, he just wants his 10% in chicken form and then he peaces out. Jamie hides, because as Murtagh helpfully explains, the Watch would turn him in in a second for the reward.

They stop to camp and roast the chickens that evening, Angus offers Claire a piece and she rejects it.

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He tosses it at her feet and tells her to suit herself, but she sulkily retorts that she also doesn’t sit with thieves, and when she gets up to stalk away, Angus has had enough and he manages to take her to task on being judgmental while threatening her with a knife. Angus crazy, yo, and he doesn’t “get” irony.

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Jamie pops up like the Jack-in-the-Box of common sense and diffuses the argument. I love Murtagh’s expression as he watches Jamie stick up for Claire. I’ll come back to this later.

Claire sulks off to sit moodily on a stump. Jamie follows her there.

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Jamie is often kind and affable as he reasons with Claire, but here he is pretty clearly exasperated with her. She tries to tell him that where she comes from-and he cuts her off. No matter where she comes from, she is here now and she needs to reserve judgement and stay out of it. That last is said kindly, but Claire is obviously feeling misunderstood. Jamie doesn’t get that she is how she is because she is a woman with sensibilities two centuries more modern than anyone else and she just CANNOT with this fuckery.

And this is where I cut it off for now, folks. Tumblr can’t handle it all in one post. Leave a comment, I love them!

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Photo Recap, Arrow S3 “High Speed Chase” Trailer

Back when I used to buy trading card packs and the first thing I did when I opened them was look through them and pronounce judgement: “Got it, got it, NEED IT, got it, NEED IT….” The repeat cards I already owned were put away for trading purposes, and that is what I am going to do with any scenes that were already included as part of the “First Look” trailer. And anything I don’t care about.  FRESH MEAT ONLY.

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[Stuff we’ve seen, Laurel making a dumb joke outta her joke hole WEVS]

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And then Sara again and something we’ve seen before but will all see in five bazillion more gifs/caps/drawings/tats before the premiere:

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And now it all starts to go rat-a-tat tat-

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And blue dude, yeah seen him and then-image

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[Other stuff that looks familiar, skipping it]

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A quick look at the date to reassure us once again that poor Oliver SUCKS AT DATING.image

*wince*

And the final tease:

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I’m off to write a strongly worded tweet to @ARROWwriters. Buy a gal dinner first, would ya?

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Photo Recap, Arrow S3 “First Look” Trailer

I can’t resist this fandom, and because the calendar won’t oblige me by segueing directly from August to October, you get this: the first of two photo recaps of the teaser trailers. Skipping the first minute of this one, because it’s a recap of the last season finale and if you want that WELL THEN here.

Dark, then we see a figure walking down a hall with a familiar tint.

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We start cycling through the new status quo.

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GODDAMNIT, LAUREL. You are THE WORST. I will table my rage. And we get our first look at Superman Ray Palmer.

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….And possible trouble in our favorite bromance:image

Some new faces I don’t care about yet-image

And some that I missed-image

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My favorite Lance sister preaches #truth and I thank her for what follows.

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MY BABIES. Everything is magic. Until he opens his mouth.

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Ssshh, Oliver. Just keep complimenting her. Our time at the Olicity date is short as we jump to Oliver’s past…

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and then everything speeds up as we touch on some old friends-

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And because they can’t resist, the writer %$#@! with my blood pressure.image

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/shakes fist

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Musical Chairs, Arrow Edition

Here are the main cast of Arrow, paired up with the Taylor Swift song they most remind me of. Don’t ask me why I do these things. I haven’t a clue.

I need to get off Tumblr, and soon.

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My favorite scene, Doctor Who S8E1, “Into the Dalek”

This one didn’t really grab me until the end, but when it did, boy did my eye stalk extend. Scene recap, followed by my take on the soldier theme. Spoilers for the end of episode 2. Onward!

Inside Rusty the Dalek, things are happening as we approach the episode’s climax:

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Meanwhile, I hope the Doctor washed his hands after swimming in protein.

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That’s the kind of thing that causes MRSA infections.

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Rusty the Dalek has had his memories restored, and because he is an egomaniacal game-player, the Doctor thinks he can do Clara one better and mind-melds with him to show him the beauty of the Universe’s creation, thereby giving him a touchstone to keep him good.

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And Rusty is taking it really well. What he sees is beautiful. Hopeful. Magical. Divine.

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EXCEPT… He sees hatred. Specifically, the Doctor’s hatred for his race. And it is chilling, because sometimes, everyone lives, but sometimes hubris gets the better of you and….

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Boom. Rusty sets out on a killing spree that has the equivalent of chunks of Dalek skull and Dalek blue blood splattering all over the set. It’s just overgrown roombas really, but it is still pretty violent and shocking when you remember that these are living beings.

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And no one is more shocked than this guy.

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Peter Capaldi, Acting. Not a happy scene, but a really, really important one because the Doctor is shaped more by his failures than his successes, and this is a massive failure.

Not only of what he set out to do in this instance with Rusty in particular, but of his faith in innate goodness beyond the scope of the expected. It took Clara to remind him this episode, as it has taken Donna and other in the past, that he needs to keep trying to outdo himself, out-hero himself, even when history says he should not, even when his own experience does. The speech he gave to Rusty could well be one he repeats to himself, bopping through the universe alone with untold power that he is constantly in danger of abusing.

Yes, that’s good. That is good. Hold on to that. Make it a part of you. Remember how you feel right now, put it inside of you right now, and live by it.

The Doctor can be harsh. He can be cruel, and like Clara told him, we are not sure (and neither is he) is he is “good”. But he tries.

In the end, this is why I feel he leaves Journey Blue behind, and why Danny Pink could be the character that changes his mind. The Doctor may not always make the right choice, but he does carry the responsibility of his wrong choices. When Journey wants to blow up Rusty, she says she will follow orders, because she is a soldier. She shows linear thinking that is somewhat rigid.

The Doctor is a runaway from his own people that sealed them up in an alternate timeline so as to save them from himself, yes… but also to save the world from another Time War. He lost his last two great loves in sacrifice for others. This is not a man that blindly follows orders.  It took Clara to shake him out of his linear thinking, as it has taken Amy and Donna in the past and so he cannot have a companion like Journey that reinforces his worst tendencies. He has to try to keep being a good man, even if that means that sometimes, he will be a hurtful one.

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Outlander photo recap, S1E4, “The Gathering”

Because this is the third time I’ve had to attempt this since my computer decided to %$#@! with me, this’ll be quick and dirty on the commentary. TRUST MY RAGE.

Open on the fields, where trouble seems afoot.

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But no, it’s not trouble, it’s Claire, playing with the kids and getting the scarring of a lifetime from Angus Mhor.

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Turns out he and her other “shadow” Rupert want to go back to “tha festivities” of The Gathering, the likes of which have not been seen since Rupert was a wee lad with a tiny, tiny beard. Claire is okay with returning, mostly because she was using playing with the kids as a way to reconnoiter not one, but two ways to escape tonight. Now to dispose of her guards…. but how?

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BEWBS is how. She has them draw straws, and Angus Mhor wins and the buxom lass loses and Rupert gets to escort her back while he shouts sweet nothings at her and tries to get her to lay down so he can show her what’s under his kilt. Who says romance is dead?

Auld Angus, that’s who. Claire is at the stables to get a mare for the boar hunt, which she is to attend the next day in her capacity as healer but really she wants a sweet horse she can run away with. She asks for Jamie only to find he’s not there.

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Auld Angus is like “quit sweatin’ Jamie” and she is like “did he say that?” and he’s all “OMFG STFU and here is your horse”. He tells her Jamie is best left alone until after the Gathering, but pairs Claire with a horse.

She heads back to the surgery to pound herbs, stash food and probably listen to Etta James when Geillis surprises a year off her life and hands her some port, her back story and some advice, in that order.

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Turns out Geillis came to the town alone with no prospects, seduced her “nothing” husband for his position and his fine home, and now drugs his tea with valerian and sleeps like a sociopathic baby secure in her ability to give zero fucks and do as she pleases. She notices Claire’s valerian, food and reluctance to attend and slyly tells her the Highlands are no place for a woman alone. We know. It’s called Episode 1. (CLAIRE: WATCH IT.)

Claire decides that mebbe a knife would be good, and sneaks off to the kitchen to try to get one. On the way, she sees that Angus Mhor is as good with the ladies as we all expected.

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Go on, Rupert. She almost gets a knife when Mrs. Fitz sees her and decides it’s time for another makeover. (WHERE ARE ALL THESE CLOTHES COMING FROM?)

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Still, Claire looks like a stone-cold fox. I can’t hate.

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And she’s secretly happy to be with Mrs. Fitz because it makes people less suspicious she’s up to something. During their walk, we are treated to the two cameos by Ron Moore and D-Gabs.

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Don’t call attendance if you’re not ready for school. Gabaldon. FITZ IN THE HIZZY.

So Claire and Queen Fitz are up in the balcony with all the ballers and shot-callers, and the Gathering begins. It’s like a giant shout-out circle jerk where the Mackenzies talk about how awesome they are, swear to be bros4life, and drink from a saucer LIKE MEN DO. Murtagh translates the opening speech for Claire, and then first up to the bro-up is Head Bro Dougal.

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Claire says what we are all thinking, mainly “How many more of these do I have to sit through?” She excuses herself and almost makes it out when Angus Mhor sees her and tries to get her to stay. Claire isn’t new to tha game, though, so she offers him expensive wine with cheap valerian root, which he happily downs.

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Claire advises him to share with his friends and sneaks downstairs to grab her things, only to have her momentum (and our show) brought to the screeching halt that is Laoghaire.

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She wants some dude (won’t mention him by name but his name rhymes with Schmamie) to like her, and YES WE KNOW and Claire is so obvs over her she puts some horse dung in a bottle and tells her to say a line from the Wizard of Oz and sure, this will NEVER COME BACK TO BITE HER IN THE ASS goddamnit it Leer.

Claire runs out to the hall with her food pack and promptly gets almost-raped by three drunk Mackenzies, only to have Dougal rescue her and then ALMOST RAPE HER TOO WTF.

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She has the presence of mind to slap the sh*t out of him Molly Hooper style, and he steps back and tells her to leave before something worse happens. I don’t know you ass, that was pretty bad.  When she glances down at her fallen food pack, however, he notices and Claire breaks a stool over his head, knocking him out and running to the stables where….

She trips over a lump. A SEXY lump who kinds of tires to stab her and then doesn’t. She found Jamie!

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But it’s not as happy an occasion as it could be, mostly because Jamie proceeds to poke holes in all her carefully laid out plans and, when she says she will go anyway, rightly points out that when they find her she will be a prisoner in all ways. Claire is frustrated, and says it shouldn’t matter because she is just ‘an outlander’, a sassenach, and Jamie’s apology is swift and unadorned and lovely.

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He offers to take her back, but she comes clean and tells him about her recent adventures with the drunken Mackenzie libido. Jamie’s jaw clenches here are monologues, and someone who is better than me at giffing things needs to gif them for me please.

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They are so cute together. i wish it weren’t always pitch dark for these scenes. In the end, he takes her to the garden, where there is a tunnel to the cellars where she can come in unseen, and it’s all good until they get caught.

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And lest we forget that Jamie is a) a gentleman and b) KICKASS, he proceeds to stick up for Claire when yet ANOTHER young Mackenzie tries to get rapey. All well and good until Rupert clocks him in the back of the head with his sword and knocks him out.

It’s REALLY IMPORTANT that Jamie GET DRESSED UP. No arguments here. He and Claire flirt and are generally adorable.

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He tells Claire he can’t wear the Mackenzie badge (Motto: “I shine not burn”. Unofficial motto: “I take guests,not prisoners.”) because he’s not a Mackenzie. He asks Claire if she knows his clan motto, and she admits she doesn’t even know his clan. That is when we get our first listen at Jamie’s French, and it is puuurrfect.

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Look, it’s even lit well so you KNOW it’s important! He asks Claire to find a place in the hall and as she walks away, she translates his motto for the audience: I am ready. For what? This.

The hall is full, but there is a noticeable hush when Jamie enters.

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Haha, sorry. I couldn’t help myself.

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So Jamie comes in, and Claire is all, “Oh yeah Jamie is here” and Murtagh is all “NOO WTF he should have hid” and Claire is like, “yeah, that was me” and Murtagh is all “CLAIRE YOU ARE THE WORST.” Turns out that if Jamie pledges fealty, he would be for all intents and purposes a Mackenzie proper, and if the clan wanted, they could vote him Laird when Collum passes, jumping both over his son and his brother. This is how Dougal feels about that:

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If he doesn’t swear his oath, he may end up kicked out of the castle and hunted by the English without the protection of the clan.

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It is a Sophie’s choice of suckiness, and much diplomacy is needed. Jamie starts out by kneeling, but promptly gets up and says though he considers Collum both kin and an ally, he can’t swear an oath because he already owes one to his own name (not McTavish). The reaction shots are PRICELESS.

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Everyone is sure he’s-a-gonna-get-it, but then he looks his uncle in the eye and charmingly, sweetly promises him his obedience as kin and laird, and to do his bidding as long as he is on Mackenzie lands. Collum isn’t made of stone, y’all. He hands him the saucer and Jamie, ever the showman, downs it in one go and walks out to the cheers of everyone present.

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Everyone seems happy with the outcome except Dougal, who still glares at his nephew as he walks out.

Next day, boar hunt. Claire didn’t think she would be here, and it shows in her piss-poor attitude.

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She mocks the highlanders for hunting “little pigs” and Rupert rightly says she must have never seen one. She is so disdainful she walks leading her horse and berates a youngster with a slash in his leg before being attacked by a boar, saved by Dougal, and then having him scared off by a scream coming from deeper into the woods.

The screamer is Geordie, who has a gashing leg wound that Claire proceeds to tourniquet only to find that his entrails have been gored. She speaks to him of his home while Dougal holds him, undoes her tourniquet, and lets him bleed to death while hiding the true extent of his injuries from him. He dies, Dougal cries and it is awful. The entire scene is 4:35 of reminding you that LIFE IS GONE LIKE THAT and it sucks.

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These scriptwriters are magnificent sociopaths and I love them and I hate them.

The hunting party comes back to the castle sad and subdued, so in true y chromosome fashion, Dougal decides to make himself feel better by beating the crap out of other dudes through the magic of sport. In this case, shinty. Jamie is only too happy to oblige, and you get the feeling that these two have been waiting to have a go at each other for quite a while. This has to be seen in glorious motion to be properly appreciated.

In any contest of new buck vs. old, there comes a point where only a body slam will get your point across.

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Jamie leaves with his ever-permanent smile, but Dougal isn’t amused.

Later that day he shows up at Claire’s surgery to try to thank her for what she did for Geordie. She says she didn’t do anything and wishes she could have done more, but he tells her that she gave him a peaceful place to be and that is more than most get. She admits to seeing many men die violent deaths, and he offers to take her to “collect rents” because he might need a healer along. This makes ZERO sense and despite the fact that I saw him get his ass beat and cry, I still don’t trust Dougal. Neither does Claire, if looks are anything to go by.

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But at least maybe we can get better-lit sets next week.

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If you made it all the way to the end, drop me a comment! It would be much appreciated!

 

S1E5 Part 1

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