Recaps

Two Takes: Outlander “Best Laid Schemes…”

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Even with St. Germain attempting to throw a wrench in their plans, Jamie and Claire manage to thwart Charles Stuart’s plans. Murtagh hires some guys to ambush them along the road, though St. Germain has no plans to surrender. He’s been ruined once already. And all these schemes and subterfuge isn’t even the juiciest bit.

In last week’s “Untimely Resurrection,” Black Jack Randall made an unexpected and unpleasant return. Because Claire’s worried about Frank, she makes Jamie promise not to kill Black Jack for a year. Although Jamie clearly isn’t happy, he agrees. In “Best Laid Schemes…,” we find out why Jamie made that promise and it’s not because he thinks he owes Claire a life. If something happens to him, Jamie wants Claire to go back to Frank. He wants Claire with someone who loves her and who will love their child.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Kara: This entire episode was so good, but I’ve got to jump right to the end.

You and I have been speculating on something for weeks. We’ve been wondering how far along Claire is and we got a much better idea of that in this episode. I’m still confused, though, because in the season premiere, Claire isn’t showing; she has to tell Frank she’s pregnant. So what the heck is going on with the timeline? I haven’t read this book, so I’m at a loss. I mean, I’m not really complaining yet, but I am gonna need an explanation about that and soon.

Tina: The pacing with Claire’s pregnancy is certainly a little wonky. But I’m suspending disbelief because the dramatic effect of Claire’s circumstances at the end of this episode is just too good.

Kara: It’s weird that we’ve been given almost no time cues in this season so far, right? I mean we got something in the season premiere. Otherwise, nothing.

My bigger issue right now is that Claire goes into labor just as Jamie is arrested by the gendarmes for dueling. He managed to stab Randall in what I hope is his penis — although obviously, that might cause issues when he tries to procreate. I can’t be upset about that yet. Whatever Black Jack did to Fergus in that room and for everything he’s already done to Jamie, he deserves whatever Jamie can dish out.

Tina: I’ve felt bad for Jamie because he’s had to hold back. I get where Claire’s coming from — Frank is an innocent man in all of this and he doesn’t deserve to be wiped from existence. But it’s also difficult to see Jamie have to give up one of the things that gave him joy, that helped give him reason to live. He was revitalized when he learned Black Jack was alive.

Fate — and the knowledge that Black Jack will never give up being the biggest d-bag of all time — stepped in. He may not have been able to get his revenge on for himself. But he’ll for damn sure do whatever it takes for someone he loves. Yes, we’re not sure what transpired between Black Jack and Fergus but we know whatever it was it elicited this reaction from Jamie. But he didn’t kill Black Jack. He did wound him in such a brutal — and well-deserved — way. It should take a while for Black Jack to recover. Good. GOOD. Too bad the gendarmes arrived on the scene. How in the world did that happen? Everything just went from bad too much, much, much worse. For Jamie and for Claire.

Kara: Well we know what big bunch of gossips the Parisian nobility is. When Jamie went to Le Herve, for the second time, to transport Charles Stuart’s wine, Claire went to Louise’s for a bit of distraction. When it seems clear that all the ladies want to talk about is other people’s sexual escapades, Claire tries to bring something of substance to the conversation. She asks the ladies why something can’t be done about all the homeless people they see every day. The ladies assume Claire’s suggesting they put these visual blights in less desirable parts of the city.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

I was never a big Louise fan before. I’m less of one now. But my point is that information has a way of traveling through the upper echelons. So I’m assuming someone’s loose lips have put Jamie and Black Jack (but again, no one cares about him right now) into harms way.

Tina: Louise and those women are such gossip girls. So out of touch with life. Glad Claire tried to give them a dose of reality. Not shocked that it didn’t register with them. They simply resumed their shallow convo. Whatever. Claire has bigger things to contend with, like dealing with Black Jack and all that entails, working at L’Hopital, coming up with a potion that simulates small pox, and warning Master Raymond to get out of dodge because of his interest in the dark arts. No wonder her pregnancy became…complicated.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Kara: When Monsieur Forez was going into unnecessary detail about how a body is properly drawn and quartered, I really wondered where that conversation was going. I know the 18th century was a brutal time. To hear how Forez plays up the theatrically of it all to the crowd? Yikes. What do we even know about this man? When Forez suggests that Master Raymond might be in danger, it shows us a glimpse into his personality. Well, I’m going to speculate. To me, it means Forez knows a little bit (or a lot) about Claire’s life outside L’Hopital. It means he cares enough for Claire to warn her about something that might not only affect her friend, but may affect her as well. In any case, I was so happy to see Claire rush to Master Raymond’s shop to warn him. I love this friendship so much and his line about seeing her in this life or the next? Does that mean we’ll see him again in 1948? I hope so.

Tina: Spoiler alert: We’ll see Master Raymond again in this time. That is, if the show follows the book. So don’t worry. You love the Claire/Master Raymond friendship and so do I. There are a couple more relationships I really enjoyed seeing in this episode and they both involve Jamie.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Let’s start with Jamie and Murtagh. Kara, he finally knows the whole truth about where Claire came from, why they’re in Paris, why they’re trying to stop the Jacobite uprising. He knows it all and his reaction was priceless! He says something about if you tell me your wife is a witch, “Who am I to contradict you!” And he punched him right in his beautiful kisser.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Then there’s Jamie and Fergus. Jamie relies on this young boy to protect Claire when necessary. Jamie takes Fergus with him on the quest to spike the wine. They were one of the best parts of “Best Laid Schemes…” I already buy Jamie, Claire and Fergus as a family. Fergus is my favorite new Outlander character.

Kara: Agreed. And I also love Claire and Fergus. She’s a bit harsher with him then the menfolk, but you can see how much she cares for him. I would say I can’t wait to see how Fergus deals with the baby, but is that what happens in this timeline? I need some answers!

Tina: Fergus telling Jamie how Claire often says to him, out of sight, out of mind was hilarious. I really laughed at that one.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Kara: Let’s spend some time on St. Germain. I know we both like him, even though he’s so much trouble. Not only does he (rightly) suspect that Jamie has something to do with the stolen wine, but they almost come to blows over it. I think Jamie was wise to intervene when it looked like St. Germain had no interest in surrendering to the highwaymen, led by a disguised Murtagh. None of them are willing to kill, anyway, to further their plan and Jamie’s “sacrifice” helps sell the story. But I wonder if this has truly ruined St. Germain. When are we gonna get more on him?

Tina: It’s funny to me how St. Germain was dead on when accusing Jamie. But when Jamie accused St. Germain of arranging that attack on Claire (and the poisoning), I wasn’t so sure. I’m with you, we need to find out more about this (spectacularly hot) guy sooner rather than later. I’m dying to know more about him. It’s not right that the Frenchman sounds so sexy when being smug, condescending and generally snobby. Kara, I know we’re supposed to be talking about the seriousness of what’s going on but I’ve just entered the TV Crush zone. Sorry, not sorry.

Kara: Who am I to judge? I’m right there with you. I’m ready for 100% more of Stanley Weber and I am willing to fangirl over him excessively. I think the reason I’m so into this character is that he’s a bit mysterious. He’s a pretty good foil for Jamie and Claire, but he’s not next-level evil like Black Jack Randall. And it was hot when Jamie and St. Germain were toe-to-toe, ready to throw down. *fans self and sighs*

Ok. Enough of that (for now). I think the only other thing we need to talk about is Jamie and Claire being intimate again. Tina, I can’t remember when we talked about it last, but we questioned whether or not Jamie and Claire were having sex. We’ve seen Jamie struggling through his post traumatic stress and the toll Black Jack’s attack — and everything else they’ve been dealing with since they’ve been in Paris — has taken on both of them. So, when Jamie asks Claire if it’s ok to have sex while she’s pregnant, for me that confirm this is their first time since Jamie’s rape. And it was great. I love that Jamie and Claire have finally connected again on this level.

Photo Credit: Starz

Photo Credit: Starz

Tina: The way things ended for Jamie and Claire after last week’s episode — he told her not to touch him because he was so upset at not being able to kill Black Jack right away. I was happy the anger between them didn’t last. The moment that stood out for me was when Jamie made his wife promise something huge:

Jamie: Promise me if the time should come, you will go back through the stones. Back to Frank.
Claire: I promise.

And then he laid his head on her pregnant belly after kissing it. The way Jamie and Claire love each other is epic. Hopefully, thinking about quiet, intimate, beautiful moments like this will get them through what’s ahead for each of them.

Outlander airs Saturday nights on Starz at 9/8c.

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