Once again, my Starz subscription on Amazon had the episode posted at 9 p.m. PST last evening. Even though I was ready for bed, I clicked on play to time travel back into the past with Jaime and Claire. However, the episode struggled to keep me engaged, and I admittedly yawned a few times.
The story is progressing this episode at a rather slower pace. Not as lighthearted or intense as others, I call these types of episodes fillers – the necessary scenes to push the story along. Nevertheless, you will find Claire and Jamie at odds with one another during the current state of affairs. Not much by way of romance, except perhaps for naked boobs dangling in front of Murtagh’s face as he’s getting it on with Claire’s lady’s maid. Starz couldn’t help themselves giving us a flash of flesh and nipples, as usual.
Early on in the episode, the light comes on in Claire’s head regarding Frank when she realizes little innocent Mary (concerned about what French men put between the legs of ladies) must marry a Randall in order for Frank to be born. Okay, time out. I got lost at this point and went Internet searching. Holy Outlander, people! There is an Outlander Wikia with character backdrops and forums to discuss the ancestral lineage. You’re all obsessed! (Oh, wait, that line is from Phantom of the Opera.)
Apparently, there is some confusion about who begat who besides me scratching my head over the names in Frank’s family bible. If you are one of those fans with an insatiable need for anything Outlander, you might follow this link and try and figure out Black Jack Randall’s lineage for yourself. OUTLANDER INFO CLICK HERE. It’s Johnathan Randall who marries Mary Hawkins so Frank can be born generations later. Dear oh, dear. Gotta keep that bastard alive a bit longer for Frank to be born.
Moving past ancestral ties, Claire is bored while Jamie is running to and fro trying to save the Scots from being wiped-out in the future. She’s sleeping alone while he’s spending nights rubbing elbows with the necessary society at the brothel. (Thank God, at least he’s faithful and not rubbing anything else as the prostitutes keep throwing themselves at him.) She is bored – he is tired. Hence the episode title, “Useful Occupations and Deceptions.”
Claire decides to volunteer her time at a charity hospital to find purpose again. It’s hard being dressed up in finery all day and having tea and playing cards. When the nuns discover her usefulness, she’s accepted into the fold, tasting urine and lancing puss-filled legs so you can watch the gore on the screen. Your tolerance for blood up close will be tested again by the camera crew.
Meanwhile, Jamie is entertaining the Prince at the brothel, playing chess, decoding stolen letters, and coming home looking for wifely comfort over a bad day. When Claire is nowhere to be found, he’s angry that she’s not taking care of her real purpose in life — being his wife. While she’s tending the sickly poor, Jamie is rightly concerned that she is putting the baby at risk by exposing it to disease. On the other hand, let’s not talk about her drinking during pregnancy.
They seem to be drifting apart, the romance is a bit cooled, and Murtagh keeps telling Claire she better tell him that Randall is still alive. Of course, the episode ends, and she doesn’t.
What about kernels? Sorry, I dropped the popcorn bowl last night watching the lancing of the leg with oozing puss and am still picking up the mess. Nothing to scatter in this review. My stomach is a still upset.