Mandy did her diligent duty this week, picking out bits of Gàidhlig for us. She had to watch and listen to certain scenes several times, but she’s a dedicated decipherer so didn’t mind. Check out her blog to find out what the groom said during Ep107: THE WEDDING.
Well, isn’t it nice to be back to an episode with some Gàidhlig? Oh, and that little other matter of a certain couple getting married. ;-)
While there wasn’t a great deal of Gàidhlig dialogue this week, we did get some great new words as well as repeats of some old favorites. Dare I hope that some of you are starting to recognize and understand some of the more common words and phrases?
21:01 Jamie to the tavern wench when she gives him food
Taing dhut – Thanks
23:03 Jamie to Claire (We’ve all been waiting for this one!)
Before I begin, I have to warn you – given the hotness of the latest episode, I decided to write my captions accordingly. While I strive to be respectful of the actors, we’re all here to have a little fun. So in advance, I apologize to anyone I may offend. Now, down to business
As I state in my review, Outlander Episode #107: THE WEDDING is blazing hot. Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire (Caitriona Balfe) sizzle together even when they aren’t touching. As the show progresses, the heat factor also increases.
Due to popular request, I turned my Top 30 Looks into a Top 40. Yes, I know 50 is better than 40 and 100 is better than 50, but I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with the selections I made this week. I’m eager to hear from you regarding my cream of the crops. Because I was unable to limit my favorite shots to a Top 10, I call special attention to the final 15. Let me know which is your favorite!
#40: Jamie’s Do I Need To Hide The Whiskey?Face – Isn’t the alcohol content in whiskey higher in the 18th Century? I’m surprised Claire is still alive.
#39: Jamie’s I Can’t Believe I’m Being Rejected On My Honeymoon Face – It’s too late to annul. By the way, thank you very much for that. But I’d be happy to pay for a quickie divorce. I’m sure Claire will be fine . . .
#38: Jamie’s Don’t Talk About The Woman I Might Marry That WayFace – You should hear what he says to her when you’re not around.
#37: Jamie’s Women Love A Man Who Loves His MotherFace – You got that right, stud.
#36: Jamie’s We Need To Make Our Marriage OfficialFace – Lord, do I wish this wasn’t fan fiction.
#35: Jamie’s What’s That About Consummation?Face – I sent you pictures, Jamie. Did you not get them?
#34: Jamie’s I’d Like To Make A ToastFace – He said “make a toast,” Claire – not “get toasted.”
#33: Jamie’s Take My HandFace – Is this a trick?
Ow! Damn screen.
#32: Jamie’s Here’s Comes The GroomFace – Well, not quite yet. #DidISayThatOutLoud?
#31: Jamie’s Your ServantFace – You can service me any where, any time, any place on my body, Jamie.
Oh, ser-vant. Never mind.
#30: Jamie’s To Sleep Or To Bed?Face – You really have to ask?
Off topic, is that the shirt that rips easily down the back?
#29: Jamie’s She’s Not Sorry She Married Me Face – Given your perfection, why would she be? That’s rhetorical, by the way.
#28: Jamie’s Claire Has A Sweet Smile Face – Who knew such a sweet face could get so nasty?
#27: Jamie’s Yeah She Wants Me Face – Wait a second! I’ve got the paperwork right here. Just sign by these little red tabs.
Damn it, Claire. Make up your mind.
#26: Jamie’s Did You Like It? Face – What’s a little crushing?
#25: Jamie’s Three Conditions Face – Oh, boy. Are you going to hit the jackpot with these three conditions.
#24: Jamie’s I’m Not Listening Any More Sex Face – I have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about here . . . something about a key? Whatever. I just want Jamie to look at me this way.
#23: Jamie’s They’re Very Precious To Me – As Are You Claire Face – Can we hate Claire for just one second?
Okay. I love her again!
#22: Jamie’s And Now They Belong To My WifeFace – Hate her again.
#21: Jamie’s I Must Marry Claire Face – I never had a chance, did I?
#20: Jamie’s My Mother’s Pearls Face – For weeks I’ve been complaining about Jamie not sleeping in the nude. Now, I have to deal with this dark lighting? What is wrong with this show?
#19: Jamie’s Mo Nighean Donn Face – Oooh. I’ve been waiting for that one! It’s the closest he’s come to saying my name.
#18: Jamie’s Thank You Uncle DougalFace – Translation: F#@* You, Uncle Dougal while I go upstairs and make love to the beautiful woman you gave me. But really, THANK YOU!
#17: Jamie’s I Look Adorable When I’m Asleep Face – Shhh. Don’t wake Jamie. He needs his rest. 1,000,000 women are awaiting their turn.
#16: Jamie’s I Look Just As Good Waking Up As I Do Asleep Face – Umm. Drawing a blank here. Can you lie down and get back up again? Oh, and maybe move up a little on the bed? This camera is a lock off.
And somehow I managed to whittle the list down to a Top 15. Enjoy!
#15: Jamie’s James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser Face – The following two images work in union. Feel free to bask.
#14: Jamie’s I’m Taking My Shirt Off At Your RequestFace – I am loving you so much right now, Claire. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Now, can you move to your left.
#13: Jamie’s I Want To Be Married By A Priest Face – I’m sorry. What were you saying? I was too busy melting in your liquid blue eyes to listen.
#12: Jamie’s I Can Tap This Any Time I WantFace – If he can do this to her by touching only her shoulder . . .
#11: Jamie’sTha Mi ‘n Dùil Sgàin Mo ChridheFace – When Jamie has a really powerful orgasm, he switches to Gàidhlig. Good going, Claire!
#10: Jamie’s Did I Do That? Face – When Claire has a really powerful orgasm, she makes Jamie smile. Good going, Claire!
#9: Jamie’s I’ve Never Seen A Naked Woman Up Close Face – Now, you tell me.
#8: Jamie’s I Thought My Heart Was Going To Burst Face – Me, too, Jamie. Me, too.
#7: Jamie’s I’m Escorting My Reluctant Bride To The Church Face – Oh, is that who she is? I was too busy watching you. You’re not supposed to outshine the bride.
#6: Jamie’s My Brown-Haired Lass Face – Finally! I get a little attention around here.
Oh, you weren’t talking to me.
#5: Jamie’s I Just Kissed The Most Beautiful Bride Face – All right. That’s too sweet for me to make a joke.
#4: Jamie’s I Said I Was A Virgin Not A Monk Face – Okay then, I need to kiss more virgins.
#3: Jamie’s I’m Laughing At MyselfFace – This is what I want to see. Jamie laughing in bed. The only thing that would make this picture better is if we lose the shirt.
#2: Jamie’s And Not One That’s Mine Face – This particular look is more about the words and the way Jamie says them as he takes Claire into his arms.
Oh, my. I need to watch that again . . . and again . . . and again. Ooh. Maybe throw a “je suis prest” in there and we have ovaries exploding.
I’d also like to point out, I was right about the shirt.
#1: Jamie’s Take Off Yours As Well Face – I thought you’d never ask. Good night!
The Outlander mid-season finale Episode #108: BOTH SIDES NOW airs on Starz on Saturday, 27 September in the U.S.
Ep107 THE WEDDING has a lot, and I mean a lot . . . of hand holding. Hands are good for so many things, most notably for touching. There hasn’t been as much touching in any of the other episodes combined. And I’m not only talking about Claire and Jamie. Everyone gets in on the touching action in this episode – not all of it gentle.
Last week, I summed up THE GARRISON COMMANDER in two words: Bloody brilliant. This week, I sum up THE WEDDING with two new words: Blazing hot.
What makes this episode blazing hot are the two people for whom we’ve been waiting to touch these past seven weeks, beyond playing footsie under the table and patching up the latest black eye. Caitriona Balfe (Claire Beauchamp-Fraser) and Sam Heughan (Jamie Fraser) sizzle together onscreen, elevating their performances to yet another level of intimacy, vulnerability and open honesty.
I make no secret of my concerns regarding Jamie’s character arc thus far. I feel in certain story lines, his responses have been lessened compared to his actions in the Outlander novel by Diana Gabaldon. He’s also been held in the shadows while the main plot develops and other characters are expanded. With this episode, we seem to have caught up with our ginger-haired hero, and it is indeed a pleasure to spend quality time with him.
Expectations were extremely high this week, putting co-Executive Producer & writer for this episode, Anne Kenney, and Director Anna Foerster in the spotlight. Both did an admirable job in this latest chapter of the story, but I believe Ms. Foerster’s masterful direction did most of the heavy lifting. I don’t normally pay attention to insert shots during a first viewing, but the small touches added made a large impact in my viewing pleasure which you will learn as I discuss the episode.
Flashbacks are a story device either loved or hated by most. I happen to love flashback storytelling when done right. I am happy to report, I believe it is done very well in THE WEDDING and adds to the anticipation and momentum of Claire and Jamie’s budding relationship. Rather than the traditional build up from wedding to wedding night, the story jumps right into the honeymoon suite.
But before we get to the hot and heavy sequences, let’s start at the beginning. The first flashback is one of only two Claire has, and it all starts with hand holding.
Mr. Frank Randall (Tobias Menzies) is escorting Miss Claire Beauchamp to a luncheon with his parents, her first time meeting them. In an act of spontaneous romanticism, he proposes marriage in front of the local registration office.
Claire exclaims, but she agrees and they skip into the building together, still holding hands.
This is probably a departure from the novel which may ruffle a few feathers. Claire and Jamie are supposed to get married in the same chapel where Claire married Frank. Obviously, that doesn’t happen here which leads to other changes in the story. I mention this deviation as a fact, not a complaint. Because of the flashback format of the episode, the chapel conspiracy would only have convoluted the story; therefore, I’m fine with the change.
Another wonderful rip through the space-time continuum occurs as Claire kisses Frank to the voiceover announcement that “the groom may now kiss the bride.” We cut from happy bride to unhappy bride Claire kissing Jamie.
It’s not clear if her first wedding memory is on her mind while kissing Jamie. This is a good time for Claire to stop thinking about Frank – at least for the rest of the day.
The real story begins in the middle. Claire and Jamie have just gotten married and finished celebrating with his kin. We join Claire alone in the honeymoon suite, waiting for her groom while the festivities continue down below. The suite is a whale-like chamber complete with a romantic fireplace and large bed. Everything a newly wed couple needs.
Jamie enters to find a tense Claire sitting in her corset and undergown. Her wedding dress, of which we are given only a close-up glimpse, lies discarded on the floor. They have a short awkward conversation regarding the making of their marriage official.
Jamie is trying to make the best of the situation, understandably confused by Claire’s mood and general pissed-off demeanor. At this point, she is most likely angry with every man in her life – past, present and future. She’s a fiercely independent woman being commanded and forced into having sex with the best looking man she’s ever met in her life, and she can’t even enjoy it. She turns to her usual solution – alcohol. They break out the whiskey, and Jamie makes a short but sincere toast:
“To a lady of grace . . . Woman of strength . . . And a bride of astonishing beauty . . . my wife, Claire Fraser.”
Yeah. Yeah. Claire drinks to her beauty. Refills their glasses and drinks again. Jamie watches as she refills her glass a third time, no longer waiting for him to catch up.
The show’s had a great deal of fun making Claire out to be a lush, but Jamie’s face doesn’t show appreciation. He raises his glass between each refill to make further toasts then gives up. Finally, he puts a hand on her arm and assures her that he has no intention of forcing himself on her. Little does he know his prowess is the least of Claire’s concerns. Jamie has said all the right things, they just happen to be all the wrong things to say to Claire.
With liquid courage coursing through her veins, Claire ask Jamie why he agreed to marry her. She had no choice in the matter but is convinced he has better things to do with his time than lose his virginity.
Jamie explains the situation from his point of view, and we flashback to his conversation in the barn with Dougal, Ned, and Murtagh. Ned makes clear what must be done on a hasty timeline, i.e. consummating the marriage within earshot of witnesses.
Apparently, Jamie wasn’t given all the details of his shotgun wedding when he agreed to marry Claire. He appears shocked to learn she has to have sex with him right away. Did he think it was one-way? Or maybe he didn’t see last week’s episode.
This scene feels out of conjunction with Jamie and Claire’s “important conversation.” What exactly has changed to make Jamie say?
“If Claire does become my wife . . .”
He can’t possibly think she’d rather choose option A) be turned over to the English, imprisoned, questioned none too politely, and tortured almost certainly. I suppose he might feel persuading her to have sex with him – as Dougal puts it – is just as bad or worse than what Black Jack will do to her. Whatever his reasoning, Dougal brings Jamie to an abrupt halt by reminding him of Black Jack’s evilness. Yeah. I think Jamie is the last person who will ever forget what’s inside Black Jack.
“So you married me to keep me safe.”
Claire says when we swing back to the honeymoon suite. Jamie nods as if it’s nothing then turns on the heroic charm with:
“You have my name. My clan. My family. And if necessary, the protection of my body as well.”
This is the first point in the story where I wonder why Claire is not jumping Jamie’s bones, specifically when he says the word “body.”
Calmly, she sets her glass down – Step 1 – and joins him on the bed. Ever so slightly, she drifts toward him or maybe she’s off balance from too much whiskey. Jamie’s okay with that and takes her hand to lean in for the hero’s kiss.
I think this is an excellent place to stop and talk about the MacKenzie and Fraser family trees. Claire thinks so, too –Jamie a little less. But he’s a good sport and nervous as hell, so he goes with it.
I rather like this version of the honeymoon. It’s playful and very much in line with both characters. In the novel, Jamie is just as nervous but approaches their unorthodox situation with a horse handler’s experience – by suggesting they hold hands while they talk. He understands the importance of touch and the development of trust. It’s missing from this scene, but we do see a glimpse of it later. It happens to be my favorite scene in the episode. More when we get to it.
Several hours pass with Jamie telling story after story. They drink more whiskey. The sun sets. Claire shares what she can about her life and manages to stay sitting up. Eventually, the whiskey (about a barrel’s worth by now) and Jamie’s natural storytelling ability relaxes her. This is starting to feel like the perfect first date until Rup and Ang barge into the room to check on kilted matters.
Dougal has sent them upstairs to find out if Claire has put a smile on her new husband’s face yet. I can’t really tell if they’re drunk or back to their old selves – maybe both. They argue and are tossed out by Jamie before coming to a consensus on the groom’s virginity.
Alone again, an awkwardness returns. While Jamie stares around the room at nothing and Claire sits coyly on the bed, I’ll jump in and say – Thank goodness she wasn’t forced to marry one of the two dimwits. She has yet to know Jamie very well, but it’s plain to see she has absolutely nothing in common with Ang and/or Rup. I can’t imagine the hellish wedding night with either of those two.
Back to Jamie and Claire. She, being the non-virgin, makes a fine and dandy suggestion:
“. . . it’s getting rather late. Perhaps we should go to bed?”
Jamie’s courage is on the rise, probably in direct relation to a certain part of his anatomy which until tonight has seen very little action.
“To bed . . . or to sleep?”
I could be mistaken, but he seems to add a little swagger to his delivery with a wobble of the head. I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be cute, cocky, or sexy. I don’t think he knows either. Regardless, it works on Claire, but then she’s drunk.
Given this is Jamie’s first time with a woman, he catches on fast by offering to help her undress. After all, Mrs. Fitz isn’t around, and Claire can’t possibly handle all the tiny buttons, laces and doodads in her current condition.
Hand action ensues. Claire takes Jamie’s hand and rises from the bed. Jamie takes Claire’s whiskey which leaves her hands free to fidget. I hope this is a sign of sexual anticipation and not alcohol withdrawal. It’s only been about 5 seconds.
What comes next sobers Claire up right quick. Imagine this . . .
You turn around so Jamie can unfasten the ties of your ridiculous skirt and undergarments. Not very sexy, so you want them off as quickly as possible. Step 2 is complete.
Now Jamie’s hand slowly runs up along your arm, skimming over your exposed shoulder. His gentle fingers pull on the ribbon tied around your neck, releasing the wispy band to slide down over your breasts.
Step 3: With a shy smile he turns you around to face him. He is mesmerized by your beauty and your reaction to his touch. His eagerness grows as he undoes the front of your corset. It slides to the ground to join the puddle of clothing at your feet. All that separates you now is a gauzy chemise – molecules of transparency.
Shall I go on or would you rather stop reading and watch the episode again? I can wait but while you’re gone, I’m going to talk about first kisses.
The first kiss is very, very important to women. I’m not saying it’s not important to men, but I’m a woman – so I can only speak from a female perspective.
It’s all about anticipation. Claire has been wondering, as their evening draws on, what it will be like to kiss Jamie. Silly Claire. She’s expecting she’ll have to teach him. But then again, he seems to know what to do with his hands. Just because he’s never touched a woman’s breast doesn’t mean he can’t figure it out – as he quickly proves.
Once again, the scene is played a bit different from the novel. Literary Claire is less nervous and takes early command. She removes his shirt and slowly runs her hands across his chest before kneeling down to slide her hands up his kilt. When she touches the Cracker Jack surprise, Jamie pulls her up for their first real kiss.
In the show Claire doesn’t get that far. She unbuckles his kilt which is enough for Jamie to plant one on her. No pictures here. Kissing in an action verb and thus should be watched in action. I highly recommend it – watching the scene, I mean. And kissing, for that matter. I do provide an adorable insert shot of Claire rising up on her toes, the better to kiss Jamie.
Now that he’s knocked her socks off – well, not quite yet. Claire asks in a very breathy voice the epic question:
“Where did you learn to kiss like that?”
To which Jamie replies – say it with me, girls:
“I said I was a virgin, not a monk.”
Then in a very definite cocky tone, he adds:
“If I find I need guidance, I’ll ask.”
Jamie proceeds to line her up for a rear mount, but Claire takes command. In unspoken direction, she pulls Jamie down onto the bed, face-to-face! Two-minutes later, we see Jamie’s reaction down below.
“I dinna realize you did it face-to-face.”
Jamie says sheepishly.
Claire reacts with a laugh which, by the way, makes her a big fat liar. She promised she wouldn’t. If literary Claire can hold it in . . . just sayin’.
When Jamie asks if she liked it, Claire’s reaction is delayed. It’s clear on her face she liked it quite a bit, and that’s the problem. Claire’s never had a casual sexual encounter her entire life. She thought she could remain detached and stay true to Frank, but that don’t work with Jamie. Maybe with Rup or Ang, she would have fantasized about Frank, but Jamie is an impossible man to substitute.
Sex shame falls on Claire. She admits to liking it and calls herself names. Jamie perks up, not able to read her confusion. He’s just happy she liked it. Claire can’t handle his innocent happy face and dashes from the room for food, wearing only her chemise. Jamie runs after her, and they both stop on the landing outside their room to the sound of catcalls and rude remarks from the men down below in the tap room.
Gotta say, I didn’t care for this rendition of the scene. I’m also not sure why Claire stands on the landing staring down at the men as they shout up at her. As a modern woman, especially one serving in WWII, this is nothing. Either ignore them or go back into the room. Jamie steps closer and tells her to go back inside. Thank you, Jamie, for bringing that part of the scene to an end.
The rest is a welcome perspective addition to the story. Jamie strolls through the tavern in only his boots and shirt – hilarious, by the way – and makes up a plate of food. He dishes out the insults as they’re served to him. Then he approaches a very drunk, very smiley Murtagh by the fireplace and accepts his godfather’s congratulations.
Heading back upstairs, Jamie passes a grumpy Dougal. His uncle has been nursing his decision all night, pissed he’s not the one ploughing Claire. Is Dougal in love or in lust with the Sassenach? The show has certainly amped up his feelings for her much more than in the novel. I have a few problems with this subplot but am eager to see how far they take it. Dougal is an enigmatic character who adds an interesting spark to the Jamie/Claire dynamic.
Back upstairs, our newlywed couple dine on what look like steak fries, and Claire talks Jamie into opening another barrel of whiskey. He fills her glass then reaches out to touch the back of her neck – a completely natural gesture. Claire shies away from the intimate contact. She’s still fighting her attraction and doesn’t want to get too comfortable too soon. Jamie moves away, not happy about being rejected by his wife so soon. He figured he had a few more months before that happened.
Claire realizes she’s being silly – Silly Claire! – and apologizes. I’m detailing this short scene because it leads up to my favorite in the episode.
Jamie smiles from across the room and returns to stand behind her. He’s back to staring at her with an openness spawned by true love. Jamie loves Claire, and now she’s his. It shows in the way he looks at her, and especially the way he touches her.
Here, he teaches her a bit of Gàidhlig:
“Mo nighean donn,”
he says softly. “My brown-haired lass.” Note: I have brown hair, too.
Claire smiles at his teasing tone, not realizing he’s no longer playing. This young man is figuring out the sex-love connection pretty darn fast, and he’s ready to try his hand at seducing. It takes only a second for her expression to change.
Jamie’s warm steady fingers – I’m positive they’re warm – caress the back of her long neck. Then he slips his hand under the blanket covering her shoulders and pulls it off. His fingers brush along the edge of her barely-there chemise. It’s in the way.
Yeah. He’s ready to go again.
Claire doesn’t dare turn around and look into his eyes.
I love the play between these two – the wrangler and the skittish colt. Jamie puts his animal husbandry skills to good husbandly use. It’s my favorite interaction between them because it’s subtle, sexy, playful and so very Claire and Jamie.
The main difference between the honeymoon scene in the book and the show is mileage. Jamie and Claire’s growing intimacy is stretched out in the show. It starts out slow and tentative and builds as they get to know each other. It makes their final lovemaking scene all the more powerful. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
While Jamie plays with Claire’s neck, she slows down his libido by asking him more questions. Jamie humors her and jumps back into storytelling mode. Several flashbacks follow.
Jamie and Murtagh have a bonding moment in the barn over a broach belonging to Jamie’s mother, Ellen. Murtagh compares Claire’s sweet smile to that of Ellen’s, helping to allay Jamie’s reservations about marrying a complete stranger – even one as pretty as Claire.
Jamie then lays out to Dougal his three conditions for marrying Claire. He wants a church wedding, a ring and a proper wedding dress for his bride. In the novel, he also insists on an extended honeymoon at an inn. Dougal and Willie procure the use of a dilapidated church, using threats then honey to induce the priest to forget about the required 3-week bans. Rupert and Angus are sent to procure the ring from the local blacksmith. And Ned Gowan pays a visit to a whorehouse to buy a dress for Claire. He transacts a bit of business for himself, telling the whore he follows up the stairs, “not too fast.” I doubt she’ll be saying that to him.
Claire’s hours leading up to the ceremony are less productive and more booze-related. As in the novel, she gets stinking drunk and has to be dragged from her bed. Murtagh does a fine job of having her whipped into shape. Where exactly did he find strong, black coffee?
Finally, we arrive at the wedding. The story of the ceremony floats back and forth between Jamie and Claire. Mostly it’s from Jamie’s perspective because Claire has very little memory of her big day though she does remember some later parts. In Jamie’s words:
“I remember every moment . . . every second. I’ll never forget when I came out of the church and saw you for the first time. It was as if I stepped outside on a cloudy day and suddenly the sun came out.”
From beginning to end Claire is in a daze, being swept along by the events. Dressed by strangers. Marrying a stranger. She looks up at Jamie as the enamored groom approaches her and tells him she can’t marry him because she doesn’t know his name. I guess she was too drunk (how long is that excuse going to work?) to read it off the marriage certificate she signed.
Jamie, standing proud in Fraser plaid, speaks his full name for the first time:
“James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser,”
pausing between each name. Claire holds out her hand, introducing herself to her new life-long partner.
“Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp.”
Dougal decides they’ve had plenty of time to get to know one another – Who needs more than 5 seconds of hand holding anyway? – and encourages them to move things along. I think he’s trying to get Claire married to Jamie before he changes his mind and elopes with her to Paris.
I’ll let the ceremony speak for itself.
Claire may not remember much, but she does recall the kiss. Though this isn’t the passion they share in the honeymoon suite, she clearly reciprocates his ardor. Jamie confesses to thinking:
“When you kissed me like that . . . Well . . . Maybe you weren’t so sorry to be marrying me after all?”
Silly Jamie. Silly Claire. So much miscommunication going on between these two. Thank goodness for Uncle Dougal playing matchmaker.
From here on out, Claire and Jamie come together because they want each other, not because it’s a duty. True, it’s a duty James is more than happy to perform, but he honestly wants to understand Claire, to please her.
He tried flattery. It made her drink. He tried storytelling. It got him one roll in the sack. He tried seducing. It made her nervous for all the right reasons though he doesnt’ know that.
Claire finally decides, she’s ready to give Jamie the night of his life. No more holding back. No more guilt. No more nice girl. With the touch of her hand, she grabs his attention.
It’s naked time. Claire orders Jamie:
“Take off your shirt. I want to look at you.”
In the novel, this is something Claire requests very early. She dives into the deep end and takes Jamie with her. I rather like the build up to this moment in the show. It’s what the writers and producers knew they had to do to make up for the lack of camaraderie between Jamie and Claire in the last few episodes. I’ll admit, I think it’s still missing from these scenes. There’s very little humor and joking between them which is part of what makes their relationship so special on page. But Ms. Balfe and Mr. Heughan do a lovely job of bringing Claire and Jamie together in a romantic, I-have-to-have-you-or-I’m-going-to-die sort of way. I think their offscreen friendship is what pulls it off. They trust each other and work well together which makes for an engaging onscreen chemistry.
The scene which follows is scintillating from Claire’s exploration of Jamie’s body with her hands and eyes to Jamie’s claiming of Claire as his own. Neither one of them holds back, especially Claire who decides she’s been too lady-like for long enough. I won’t describe the details of their sensual sex scene. That’s for you to enjoy on your own.
Jamie falls asleep – naturally – which leaves Claire alone and in need of a drink – of water this time. She traipses downstairs in Jamie’s kilt and finds the tavern empty. Dougal enters with that sixth sense of his and calls out her name:
Frankly, I wish this part had been left out entirely. Dougal is confused; thus, I am confused. He wants her. He doesn’t like her. I guess he doesn’t have to like her to bed her. The scene would make much more sense if he were drunk, but he’s stone-cold sober having just come from a visit with Jonathan Randall. He reports Claire is in the clear – for now – so it seems. But she’s not safe from his advances. Dougal is still looking for payment for all the times he’s saved her butt.
“I commend you for doing your duty,”
Dougal says with a hand cupping her chin,
“but it needn’t stop you from sampling other pleasures. I find you to be the most singular woman, Claire.”
Dougal’s good. Dougal’s bad. Dougal wants to help Claire. Dougal wants to screw Claire. Dougal thinks she’s a whore. Dougal thinks she’s singular. I think he bounces back and forth so much, even he doesn’t know who he is or what he wants.
I’m going to defend Dougal and say I think this scene is way out of character for him. If he were drunk and back at Castle Leoch, then maybe he would hit on her. I don’t buy him trying this less than 24 hours after she marries his nephew. We get it. He finds her attractive, but he does too much lurking, smirking, pouting and grumping about it.
His confusion further shows when Rupert enters the tavern, greets Claire politely then makes a completely normal guy joke about her looking well-ridden by an inexperienced Jamie. Dougal punches him in the face and orders him to check on the horses again. Then he takes up drinking while watching Claire re-enter the bridal suite. Now, she’s Mother Theresa.
Back upstairs, Claire sits by the fireplace waiting for her Scot stud to wake up. From the look on her face, she’s at peace – her first moment of it since her arrival in the 18th Century. Jamie has given this to her.
As if her thoughts call to him, he wakes and stares at his new wife from across the room. Rising from the bed, he takes something from his sporran and drapes it around her neck, telling her:
“They’re Scotch pearls. They belonged to my mother. And now they belong to my wife. They’re one of the few things I have left of her. They’re very precious to me. As are you, Claire.”
Claire is touched by his tender honesty. He has shared himself completely with her. His words express a genuine feeling, and she does not trivialize his affection. Silently, hand-in-hand, they make love.
From consummation to sex to making love, Jamie and Claire experience it all in this episode. Claire may believe infatuation is driving her, but it’s something much stronger which she will eventually learn. Jamie falls in love only once in his life, but he recognizes it for what it is, though it’s more powerful than he ever imagined it could be.
This episode begins with Claire holding hands with Frank. In between, there’s much hand holding with Jamie as seen above. It ends with her staring at her own two hands. Two rings. Two husbands. Two lives. Two loves?
Overall, I enjoyed this episode very much and admit to watching it with a smile on my face – simply because I was happy to watch Claire and Jamie together. The script is not as strong as that for THE GATHERING nor as brilliant as the writing for THE GARRISON COMMANDER. It had a lot to achieve in a short span of time, and I think it accomplished the task.
I mentioned an open honesty at the beginning of my review and was disappointed to lose the dialogue from Jamie at the start of their first night together. Trust and honesty are very important elements in their relationship, established early on. The history of Claire’s origin is the one thing she cannot share with him which leads to several problems, as the readers know.
I am looking forward to many more perspective changes in the story – a huge and intriguing departure from the novel. The additions create an interesting potential for the scenes in Wentworth and Lallybroch.
Going back to the wedding, I’d like to point out one other obvious scene removed from the show – that of Claire fainting after the ceremony. I am guessing it was eliminated because of the change in location. Without the chapel where she and Frank were married, there’s less reminder and connection to her first wedding. It’s a charming scene in the novel and would have been lovely to see, but it’s not necessary in this story line as written.
Ron Moore and Terry Dresbach’s podcast for Episode 107: THE WEDDING is available for free on iTunes or you can listen to it here. Mr. Moore also gives us another inside look at the making of this episode with special attention on Claire’s incredible wedding dress:
The final 2014 Outlander Episode #108: BOTH SIDES NOW airs on Starz on Saturday, 27 September in the U.S.
Jamie and Claire’s live action wedding and honeymoon is upon us. I couldn’t resist writing a companion sonnet to the formerly entitled: Highland Groom. After all, what’s a groom without a bride?
If you missed Jamie’s sonnet in the wedding invitation I created earlier this week, here it is again with a handsome picture of our happy husband – at least he will be momentarily, I’m sure. It’s newly entitled: Bloody Scot.
Claire’s sonnet is entitled English Rose and includes a variation of a quote from Diana Gabaldon‘s Outlander, Chapter 38: The Abbey.
“And if there was eternity, or even the idea of it, then perhaps Anselm was right; all things were possible. And all love? I wondered. I had loved Frank; I still did. And I loved Jamie, more than my own life. But bound in the limits of time and flesh, I could not keep them both. Beyond, perhaps? Was there a place where time no longer existed, or where it stopped? Anselm thought so. A place where all things were possible. And none were necessary.
And was there love there? Beyond the limits of flesh and time, was all love possible? Was it necessary?
The voice of my thoughts seemed to be Uncle Lamb’s. My family, and all I knew of love as a child. A man who had never spoken love to me, who had never needed to, for I knew he loved me, as surely as I knew I lived. For where all love is, the speaking is unnecessary. It is all. It is undying. And it is enough.”
This is one of Claire’s most poignant moments as she meditates in the chapel of the monastery where Jamie lies dying. This is the night before Jamie shares with her the details of his ordeal with Jonathan Randall. It is through her genuflections in the chapel the answer to saving Jamie’s life comes to her. I selected this passage because it all comes down to the choice she makes for him here . . . to let him die or save his soul.
The theme for Ep106: THE GARRISON COMMANDER is definitely red as in Red Coats. For those of you #FriendsOfFrank, you’ll be happy to know his entire wardrobe in this episode consists of a towel and a sexy smile. And speaking of an eye-full, we are also awarded a few quick flashes of Jamie’s handsome father – Brian Fraser.
Despite all the dashing-looking men in and out of uniform, the standout costume of the evening is easily Claire’s ethereal nightgown in the close shave flashback scene. After the episode airing, Costume Designer, Terry Dresbach, wrote this about her creation:
“Claire’s nightgown. It is just a lovely, lovely garment. We dyed that gorgeous silk this lush, peach color. I wanted to make something that was clean and sophisticated that would reflect who Claire is and what she would choose, and yet be devastatingly feminine and sexy. The high lace collar shows off her perfect neck. I also wanted it to to slide off in one movement, once you untie that string (originally scripted).”
I seem to recall reading the main material coming from a piece of vintage silk – Anyone? In any case, this is a one-of-a-kind design – like the rest of Claire’s wardrobe, so you won’t find this lacy number in a Victorian Secret catalog. To read more about the other costumes, check out Ms. Dresbach’s An 18th Century Life: The Garrison Commander.
Caitriona Balfe as Claire Randall
Edmund Digby-Jones as Corporal Hawkins
Caitriona Balfe as Claire Randall
Fort William Crowd
Tom Brittney as Lieutenant Jeremy Foster & John Heffernan as Brigadier General Lord Oliver Thomas
John Heffernan as Brigadier General Lord Oliver Thomas
Sam Heughan as James Fraser
Fort William Crowd
Tobias Menzies as Captain Jonathan Randall
Caitriona Balfe & Tobias Menzies as Claire & Frank Randall
Fort William Crowd
Fort William Crowd
Andrew Whipp as Brian Fraser
Fort William Crowd
Edmund Digby-Jones as Corporal Hawkins with Tobias Menzies as Captain Randall
Fort William Crowd
Fort William Crowd
Sam Heughan as James Fraser & Tobias Menzies as Captain Jonathan Randall
Sam Heughan as James Fraser
Andrew Whipp as Brian Fraser
Caitriona Balfe as Claire Randall & Graham McTavish as Dougal MacKenzie
Sam Heughan as James Fraser
Tom Brittney as Lieutenant Jeremy Foster
Caitriona Balfe as Claire Randall & Graham McTavish as Dougal MacKenzie
Caitriona Balfe & Tobias Menzies as Claire & Frank Randall
Outlander Episode #107 THE WEDDING is this SATURDAY, as if you didn’t know. We’ve had lots to keep us occupied while we count down the minutes. People magazine released exclusive photos of the lovely Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp (Randall) Fraser (Caitriona Balfe) and her dashing husband, James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser (Sam Heughan) in the honeymoon suite.
I increased the resolution and adjusted the lighting a bit to bring out the details of Claire’s corset in Terry Dresbach‘s gorgeous design, so have a look-see. Earlier this week, she also posted images and an early sketch of Claire’s wedding dress on her blog: An Eighteenth Century Life.
And for those of you who can’t get enough of Ms. Dresbach’s costumes, she has a new discussion forum active where you can post comments and ask questions about each episode and the costumes for each character. THE WEDDING will most likely be the hot topic this weekend, so have at it.
Most of you are probably familiar with my collection of Outlander posters. If not, you can view them all here in full resolution. I update them with new footage as it’s released. As this is a post about the wedding, I thought I’d include the corresponding poster for Ep107. The image in the middle is of my own creative imagination.
And finally, Outlander Starz put out a call for Wedding Invitations. Below is my submission. It includes a sonnet with a variation of one of my favorite lines of all the series because it’s a sentiment Diana Gabaldon‘s husband expressed to her. Sigh. From the last line of TheFiery Cross:
“When the day shall come that we do part,” he said softly, and turned to look at me, “if my last words are not ‘I love you’ – ye’ll ken it was because I didna have time.”
Outlander Ep106 takes a pivotal step for most of the main characters in the story, including absent Frank. He’s still stuck in the 20th Century without his wife, Claire (Caitriona Balfe), and is not invited to her second wedding to the irresistible James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser (Sam Heughan).
What’s worse, it’s his own six-times great-grandfather who is driving her into his well-built chest and protective arms. Jamie is sworn to use his body by whatever means to satisfy Claire’s safety requirements. Fortunately, his duties to ensure her safety include lots of sex. And now, I’ve forgotten my point . . . oh, yeah.
Captain Jonathan Wolverton Randall, Esquire, aka Black Jack (Tobias Menzies) is front and center in this episode. So, I thought I’d do something a little different this week in honor of Tobias Menzies’ breathtaking performance as the man who “dwells in darkness . . . “
Below I submit Jamie and Black Jack Randall’s Top 15 Looks for Ep106.
Jamie’s Top 15 Looks for EP106: THE GARRISON COMMANDER
#15: Jamie’s This Is Not How I Pictured My Wedding Day Face – Yeah. Yeah. Weddings are pretty. Get to the honeymoon already.
#14: Jamie’s Yep She’s Getting Sloshed And I Got Her Started Face – Seeing as you’re a virgin, you probably don’t know it’s not a great idea to booze up the bride-to-be hours before the ceremony. Luckily, Claire has a high alcohol tolerance, so she should be fine by the honeymoon.
#13: Jamie’s No Father Wants Me For A Son-In-Law Face – Jeez. What high standards in the 18th Century. What’s a little price on the head? You’re single, straight with a steady income and you’re easy on the eyes – not that Dads care about that. You’re a catch!
#12: Jamie’s O. M. G. I’m Finally Going To Lose My Virginity Face – He hadn’t really thought that far ahead, but it’s hitting him now with Claire bringing up the virgin thing.
#11: Jamie’s You Mended Me Enough Times So The Least I Can Do Is Marry You Face – That’s the flimsiest excuse I’ve ever heard for getting into a lass’s knickers, but it works for me.
#10: Jamie’s What The F#@* Did I Just Agree To? Face – Jamie has never been this nervous in his life. He just went through the shortest courtship period in history and now heads off to the lamest bachelor party in the Highlands. Rupert must have organized it.
#9: Jamie’s I’m Engaged Face – Now what do I do?
Murtagh’s just happy it’s not Leery. Angus would have been better than her.
#8: Jamie’s What Kind Of Friend Would I Be If Didn’t Marry You Face – You really don’t get how marriage works, but I like the way you think, lad. We’ll keep doing it your way.
#7: Jamie’s I’m A Virgin Face – Oh, Lord. There go the ovaries exploding again.
#6: Jamie’s One Of Us Should Ken What We’re Doing Face – With all Jamie’s education, I’m surprised he never came across a Kama Sutra book at some point. Does he not read Sanskrit for Pete’s sake?
#5: Jamie’s I’m Afraid Of Freezing Before You Finish Listening To Yourself Talk Face – Well, I had to add one from the flogging scene, and as much as I hate to point this out – Jamie looks damn sexy manacled to that post. Too bad Black Jack’s ruining the shot.
#4: Jamie’s Start The Honeymoon Tomorrow? Face – This is what a Highlander looks like when he “SQUEES!”
#3: Jamie’s Do I Mind You’re A Beautiful Older Woman With More Sexual Experience Than My Virginal Loins? Face – No.
#2: Jamie’s Am I Willing To Marry You? Face – Seriously? Is this trick question day?
#1: Jamie’s I Finally Get to Kiss Claire Face – Jamie is just now realizing his dreams are about to come true.
BJR’s Top 15 Looks for EP106: THE GARRISON COMMANDER
#15: Black Jack’s Milksop Face – It’s so hard to find good help these days. If he’s going to balk at kicking a woman, what’s next? Refusing to kill a man? Useless.
#14: Black Jack’s On Your Life? Face – Case in point. If this Corporal had any initiative, he’d let the razor slip and make everyone happy.
#13: Black Jack’s The Rehabilitation Of Black Jack Randall Face – Exorcism . . . rehabilitation . . . whatever. The Exorcism of Black Jack Randall has a nice ring to it, but it’s been done to death. Let’s go with 200 lashes and see how strong you are.
#12: Black Jack’s Made My Stomach Flutter My Legs Shake Face – I’ve never seen someone fall in love with a cat-o-nine tails. You two should be very happy together.
#11: Black Jack’s Sheer Judder Of The Whip Coursing Up My Arm Face – Okay. We do not need to hear the details of your relationship.
#10: Black Jack’s An English Lady And A Scottish War Chief I Can’t For The Life Of Me Piece That One Together Face – It’s very simple. She time traveled through some magic stones and was minding her own business when your brute squad tried to kill her for no reason, then you attempted to rape her for no “good” reason, then she was forced into the hands of the MacKenzies where she’s been a captive for the past several months and now suffers from Stockholm Syndrome. Any other questions?
Oh, yeah. And it’s all your six-times great-grandson’s fault for not going with her to the stones to pick the Forget–Me–Nots. How ironic is that?
#9: Black Jack’s I Would Not Believe You If You Told Me That Night Is Dark And Day Is Bright Face – So verbose in the 18th Century. We just call people “liars” now.
#8: Black Jack’s Charmed Face – . . . not getting charmed or charming from you.
#7: Black Jack’s You’re A Weasel-Faced Wanker Face – Specifically Lord Thomas, but really it applies to just about all the men in the room with the exception of the handsome Lt. Foster.
#6: Black Jack’s I Trust I Am Sufficiently Presentable? Face – I have to confess, I actually like Black Jack here. He makes these dandy officers look like overdressed bellhops with bad wigs.
#5: Black Jack’s Lord Thomas Is An Utter Ass Face – Yeah. I got nothing. Lord Thomas is an utter ass, especially for leaving Claire behind with you, Black Jack.
#4: Black Jack’s Kicking A Woman Is Very Freeing Face – Yeah? You know what I find very freeing? Kicking a man in the balls. Want to volunteer?
#3: Black Jack’s Women Face – This scene is both funny and sinister. I love Black Jack’s every reaction to Claire’s woebegone tale. She actually gives him a headache. I guess that’s something.
#2: Black Jack’s I’m Shooting Daggers From My Eyes Directly At Your Head Face – This is the most hysterical scene in the show. Petulant Black Jack kicks at the door jamb while everyone watches, too intimated and/or shocked to complain. The look on Claire’s face is priceless because she can’t believe the immaturity, especially after calling Dougal and Lt. Foster children.
#1: Black Jack’s Did I Make You Happy? Face – How much do I adore this smile? Black Jack becomes Frank for a few frightening minutes which makes the punch to the gut all the more shocking for Claire. The scene in general is not funny, but I can’t help but wonder if the smile is genuine because he can’t believe how easily she is manipulated.
Outlander Episode #107: THE WEDDING airs on Starz on Saturday, 20 September in the U.S.