Sabrina Petrafesa ‘18 / Emertainment Monthly President
If the premiere of Outlander was all about Jamie and Claire’s struggle to live without each other in the immediate aftermath of their separation, then episode two is about how they are finally moving on. This episode very heavily focused on Jamie (Sam Heughan) and how he’s been struggling for six years to move on from Claire (Caitriona Balfe).
It’s safe to say that Jamie is not handling separation from Claire very well. Not only did Jamie lose her wife he lost a child he never got to meet. He’s been staying with his sister, Jenny (Laura Donnelly) along with Fergus (Romann Berrux) and on the run from the English. Unfortunately Jamie has seriously let himself go. His hair and beard has grown far too long and he just looks physically a mess. He has no will to live and is merely surviving.
Everyone around Jamie tells him of their worry for him. Jenny wants him to move on and have children with the woman who works for her at their home. Jamie is still so deeply in love with and in mourning of Claire that he has not been with another woman since. Jenny is under the assumption that he need to move on, but Jamie simply won’t. Instead he urges Jenny to turn him into the English so she can get the reward money and that’s how the episode ends. With Jamie, thankfully shaved and looking incredibly fresh faced, “returning” home where the English are waiting for him.
Heughan has made Jamie’s heartache and his pain so evident you don’t even need to hear him speak. There are no words for the pain he is feeling. The performance given by Heughan in this episode of Outlander is one of the best yet.
Fast forward to the 1940s, Claire is trying to throw herself into being a mother and attempt to be a wife to Frank (Tobias Menzies), but that is not working out for her. While Jamie has pretty much celibate, Claire tries to move on with Frank after the birth of Brianna. While there is an attempt, Claire is obviously not there in the moment with Frank and he knows it. I believe this is the true beginning of the end for Frank and Claire. Leading to the two to share a room, but not a bed. Claire decides her home life is not enough and decides to go to school to become a doctor, where she is the only woman in her class and she befriends the only other outcast: a black man named Joe Abernathy (Wil Johnson).
The second episode of Outlander brought a lot to the table. We see the struggle in both Claire and Jamie and the people around them. It seems the theme for this season will be struggle. The struggle to move on, the struggle to survive, and the struggle to interact with the people around you.
Episode Grade: A
Episode three of Outlander brings forth an overwhelming amount of information and we clear 18 years of Claire’s life in this episode. Jamie is in jail and basically the leader of the prison, and Frank’s fate is sealed.
We’re introduced to Jamie’s life in prison through Officer Grey (David Berry) who has just started working there. We learn Jamie is considered one of the only civilized prisoners and is the only one kept in shackles for his part in the rebellion. He acts as a leader of sorts and is the voice of the prisoners.
Back in Boston we learn that Claire and Frank have agreed that Frank is allowed to have an affair in a very subtle moment where it’s not even explicitly said. Claire wants to see a movie but Frank has already seen them with someone. Fast forward to Claire’s graduation we see who that someone is because Frank got the times wrong for Claire’s celebratory dinner and she showed up to the house!
After the night is over Claire and Frank fight about it, because of course they do, that was a big deal. Claire graduated from Med School and Frank had his mistress over, however accidental the incident was. Divorce gets brought up and even though the couple desperately needs to divorce they don’t and suffer in their marriage for years to come.
Jamie however seems to be living life as much as you can in a prison. Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix) is there and Officer Grey seems to have taken a liking to him and they have an easy camaraderie. Jamie is even, finally, talking about Claire. It seems that he’s finally moving on in a healthy way.
By the end of the episode Jamie is on his way to an Englishman’s home to be their indentured servant and Claire has been a doctor for years. Claire and Frank fight once again about separating but now that Brianna is 18 he feels that now is the time to divorce and be with his mistress. Unfortunately, before he has the chance to Frank is in a car accident and dies. Claire’s final moment with Frank’s body in the hospital reminds you how there life together was difficult but it had started with love.
Outlander’s third episode has brought the audience’s closer to Claire and Jamie’s reunion. The two have seemed to have moved on as best as they could. Jamie has finally opened up about Claire and Claire is finally no longer tied down to Frank.
Episode Grade: A+
Outlander airs Sundays at 8PM on Starz.