Outlander Season 2, Ep. 206 – Best Laid Schemes

Last evening exactly at 9 p.m., once again the next Episode was posted on my Starz subscription.  I watched it but also did a lot of fast-forwarding too.

At the end, Claire loses her baby and consciousness, Black Jack Randal may have lost his penis, and Jamie is arrested for dueling.

I’ll let you watch it for specifics. “I didna wanna spoil it for you, lass!”

Outlander Season 2, Ep. 205 (Untimely Resurrection)

Well, I remembered to tune in at nine p.m. last night, even though by Friday night at nine I’m feeling like a Zombie from a week’s work.  Nevertheless, for the sake of staying on top of the latest episode my Starz subscription Amazon gives me, I tuned in to watch the continuing Outlander saga.

I must admit that I waffle between bored and interested most of the time.  Frankly, I think because Season 1 (or at least what I watched) kept my interest by the premise of time travel and Claire’s journey back into the past.  However, I’m still struggling to keep my attention during this French portion, except for a few parts that poke at me to concentrate.  Episode 205 and the “Untimely Resurrection” of Jack Randall turned out to be a rather intriguing, if not entertaining, scene.

The earlier part of the episode deals with Mary Hawkins’ aftermath of rape, and Claire’s bid to try and convince the younger Mr. Randall not to marry the disgraced woman.  After all, Claire is now on a bid to make sure that Frank gets born.  It’s quite a conundrum because she loves Jamie, of course, but cannot bring herself to change the future enough to have never loved or married Frank.  What’s a time-traveler to do?

As the episode progresses and Claire and Jamie attend a horse-fair of sorts at Versailles, while Jamie is off checking the teeth of mares and studs, she takes a stroll with Annalise de Marillac.  If you remember, that is the young lady who knew Jamie before Claire.  It’s obvious by her remarks of how much Jamie has changed that she’s not too keen on Claire’s influence in his life.

Then it happens.  Off in the distance, dressed in his British red uniform, comes Black Jack Randall strolling toward her in all his glory.  Naturally, Claire’s jaw sets for the next fifteen minutes in the scene, while Randall enjoys the reunion immensely.  Once again, as much as I hate the freaking sadistic character, Tobias Menzies pulls off an excellent performance.  Unfortunately, Catriona‘s set jaw and words that were spoken through her clenched teeth fall short in comparison.

When the King arrives with his entourage, a rather amusing scene of the French degrading the English occur, while poor Randall endures the humiliation and insults. Better to bend one knee than to lose one’s head.

And then Jamie arrives upon the scene.  Both men place their hands on the hilt of their swords but restrain from carrying out a bloodbath in front of the King and Claire. After the French depart, Jamie challenges Randall to a duel.  Of course, if you didn’t know, dueling was illegal in France at the time.  I know because I researched it for one of my books.  However, duels still occurred in secluded places where one could draw first blood and be declared a winner or one could duel until death. (Extra notes below.)

When Claire learns of it, she becomes unhinged. Jamie cannot kill Randal or Frank won’t live!  Will she convince the young Scot to keep his sword sheathed or will Jamie draw it anyway to get his revenge?  You’ll just have to watch the episode and find out.  If you read the book, I’m assuming you already know.  “You have a choice! Him or me!”

Maybe I should take French lessons.  I might enjoy it better than reading the sub-titles.

The Duel

Of course, there are rules to the game, even if the game was illegal during this period. Nevertheless, duels continued, and not many were prosecuted over the act. If a man wanted to regain his honor from the offender, the first course of action would be the challenge or what is terms as, “throwing down the gauntlet.”

Once accepted, the location and weapons were chosen. Each man brought a representative to witness the act. The challenger set the rules as to location, weapons, and number of steps to pace off. It was his call. I noted, however, in this episode that Randall had the choice.  What I have read, that is not the case unless Starz took some creative liberty.

The type of duel could either be any of the following: (1) to first blood, which meant until one was wounded, (2) until severely wounded and unable to continue, or (3) to the death. Each pistol had one shot, and if there were misses the first round, the guns were reloaded and they would continue until one of the above conditions were fulfilled but usually no more than three reloads.

To learn more, visit Wikipedia.

Outlander Season 2, Ep. 204 (Le Dame Blanche)

OutlanderS2Starz_Flyout_us_519x545._CB294524208_I’m going to pass on writing anything significant regarding this episode for a variety of reasons.  Another relatively move-it-along episode that can be summed up with bullet points below in no particular order:

  • Claire finally tells Jamie that Randall is alive.
  • Jamie seems happy about it because he can finally kill the bastard himself.
  • Jamie and Claire have an argument because of activities at the brothel and bite marks on his body. Finally, he’s ready to do it after experiencing a bit of temptation elsewhere.  You’ll get to see his naked behind again and Claire’s breast being sucked. (Starz, oh, Starz, my biggest complaint, too much flesh.)
  • More drinking on Claire’s behalf while pregnant.
  • The evil Comte apparently slipped something in her drink to make her sick.
  • Claire and Jamie throw a dinner party to derail investors in Prince Charles’ war efforts.
  • As usual, Claire is a magnet again for trouble when she decides to do something on her own, which ends up in assault and rape of Mary Hawkins.
  • The dinner party ends up in a brawl.
  • Next week – “It’s either him or me!” Claire knows if Jamie kills Randall, Frank will not exist.
  • Oh, and let’s not forget the scene of throwing bones on a Zebra skin reading her future.  She’s told that she will see Frank again, but obviously is hugely disappointed over that revelation.

Until next week!  Oh, and I forget to watch it Friday night when it was posted.  Me bad.

Outlander Season 201, Ep. 201 (Through a Glass, Darkly)

Outlander25 Kernels

On April 5, 2015, I wrote a post – “Outlander Returns, But I Won’t Be.”  I did not watch the second half of Season 1, mainly out of protest due to the violence and scenes I didn’t care to have burned into my psyche.  It was a personal choice, and I have not regretted that decision.

I don’t have Starz on cable, but I have added the Starz subscription to my Amazon account for $8.99 per month to get back on the ship sailing for France.  Perhaps, out of ignorance of not reading the entire series (except for book one), I have no idea what lies ahead.  Bravely, I decided to pick up the story, which hopefully is a little less violent in nature.  Please warn me if there is something ahead.  I just don’t have the time to read books when I’m busy writing them.

Last night I streamed the first episode of Season 2, which apparently was released ahead of airing on cable.  A lot of reviewers emotionally thanked Starz for that gift.

Jamie and Claire have arrived in France, fleeing the horrid past I failed to watch. Of course, Claire has her agenda immediately after their arrival, in spite of the fact that Jamie is recovering from ghastly abuse at the hands of Randall.

However, the story doesn’t begin there.  Claire is found lying on her back again having come through the portal.  Dressed in her Eighteenth Century clothing, she’s returned to 1948.  After being found wandering the streets by a passing car, she learns that her plan to stop the Culloden massacre has failed – those Brits won anyway.  Everyone she loved and knew is dead, gone, and a pile of dusty bones buried somewhere in the land she left behind.

Mild manner Frank is elated she’s back. Claire at first only tells her journey to the vicar’s housekeeper who danced the dance in Season 1 around the mysterious stones. She is traumatized, heartbroken that she has left Jamie, and pregnant.  Okay, now don’t get me wrong, but something along the time-travel continuum must have went wacky in the creative license Gabaldon took in this instance.  Nevertheless, Claire is carrying Jamie’s child even after coming through the portal.  After Frank discovers all the secrets of her disappearance and impending motherhood, he loses it.  His violent outburst is reminiscent of his psychopathic ancestor.

After calming down, Claire and Frank come to an agreement of sorts. Claire will put the past behind. Frank will raise the child as their own. They will move to Boston and begin a new life. As Claire takes Frank’s hand coming off the plane, we are thrown into the flashback of her arrival with Jamie in France.

What can I say about Claire? Her character irks me a tad. She’s bullheaded and determined, while Jamie questions the morality of their decision to try and change the future. Of course, Claire isn’t privy to all that knowledge we have now about how changing the future can lead to disastrous results. Nowadays, we’ve read enough fiction novels, seen movies, and television shows that point out that fact.  Perhaps, Stephen Hawking can chime in, too, that if it were possible to time travel, it’s not a very good idea to change the past.

After meeting the key players in France, making their first enemy (boy that was quick), viewers are off on another adventure with the Scot.  Admit it — you only watch because of cute Sam Heughan, who plays Jamie Fraser.  You’ve seen his naked behind making love to Claire and you want more.  I get it.

So, let’s see how Outlander plays out in the future. I will admit the acting is top-notch, especially for Caitriona Balfe and Tobias Menzies in the first episode of Season 2 last night. They almost had me crying. How Tobias can switch from a maniac to a decent human being shows his wide range of talent.  The costumes and scenery this season look to be stunning. Long gone is the cold castle as it appears the players will now be living in luxury.

I will continue to pen my two-cents worth and scatter kernels for your delight.  In the meantime, my next project is my own time-travel story that will have you scratching your head over my creative liberties.  Should be fun nevertheless but probably not Starz worthy.  No naked Scots in mine, only a crippled Brit.