Have you missed this show as much as we have? We had a great time watching the Season 2 premiere and immersing ourselves back in this world and the lives of Claire Randall Fraser, Jamie Fraser and Frank Randall.
As Claire and Jamie set sail for France as the end of Season 1, we knew there would be a lot of adversity ahead for them. But they’ve escaped Black Jack Randall and they’re setting off to try to change the future. It’s a great idea, but they’ve got to come up with a plan to set things in motion. How will they ingratiate themselves with the Jacobites in their temporary new home, will Parisian society even accept them and, mostly importantly, what can they do to change the course of history?
Kara: Going into the episode, I knew the action wouldn’t start on Jamie and Claire in France. I remember when you listened to the audio version of Dragonfly in Amber, you mentioned that the book takes quite a while to return to their story. So, I knew the episode would start with Claire’s return to Frank. And it was strange. You know I was a Frank fan for a while (and, quite frankly, I still am), but it was jarring and strange and sad and frustrating to spend so much time away from the Frasers. Of course I care about Claire in the future, but right now I’m still much more invested in her past…with Jamie.
Tina: If what I recall about the book is true, Dragonfly didn’t start with Jamie or Frank. And it didn’t start in the 1940s either. To be honest, I am supremely happy with where the series decided to pick up. Because, to me, the beginning of the book was a bit frustrating for reasons I won’t go into. I actually really loved Claire reconnecting with Frank and seeing the emotion of what he went through during her absence firsthand. It still sets up the story that they’re telling nicely.
I almost forgot how hot Tobias Menzies is. I almost forgot how good an actor he is. So it was cool to be reminded. That doesn’t take away from what I experienced when we finally saw Jamie Fraser again in France in 1745. Kara, I had the most gigantic smile on my face. I. Missed. Him. Welcome back, Outlander.
Kara: Hard same. I was so freaking happy to see Jamie again. But, since the first half of this episode is all about Frank and Claire, let’s spend just a little bit more time talking about them. I’ve always loved Tobias Menzies and known how well he telegraphs emotion, so I wasn’t surprised by his great work here. I even loved the scene at the hospital when they’re reunited. Claire doesn’t realize he’s come into the room and when she does things are…awkward. So awkward. I love that stuff. I have to say I also love that, despite her outlandish — and quite frankly almost impossible to believe story — Frank’s willing to take what she says at face value. Claire disappeared for two years. She admitted to falling for another man. Despite everything, Frank still wants to be with her. She’s just got to let Jamie go. Um, good luck with that.
Tina: I mean, sheÂ initially calls herself Frank’sÂ ex-wife. He has to remind her she’s still wearing his wedding ring. To ask her to let Jamie go is going to be easier said than done but Claire will try. I also love how Frank believes her story. He reminds her of how he once said she could do or say anything to him and it wouldn’t change how he feels about her. That was just a theory. Now it’s a reality. He says he tried to hate her and believe she left him for another man while she was gone those two years. But he couldn’t. He’s just flat out in love with Claire. As for Claire, I think she has to fall back in love with him. She’s Jamie’s wife in her mind right now. Maybe it’ll be easier to exist in the present now that they’re moving to Boston.
Kara: Yeah, it’s very “new year, new you,” but I think it’s necessary. And I loved the transition of Claire reaching for Frank’s hand in 1948 New York and us seeing her take Jamie’s in 1745 when the ship arrivesÂ in Le Hevre, France.
Jamie and Claire still have a Jacobite uprising to prevent or to help them win — or that’s the plan, even though we know that in Claire’s present they weren’t able to change the future. But where can they start? I think Jamie’s cousin is right to question his motives. They don’t really know each other and it’s important for Jamie to “pull out” his bonafides so, once again, we have to see what Black Jack Randall has done to Jamie’s back. The hand is a constant reminder and, of course, we see that Jamie is still wrestling with what happened to him in that prison.
Tina: Just seeing Jamie lie on the bed oh so carefully because of his wounds is painful. Although not as painful as having to hear him admit that he can still feel Black Jack’s touch sometimes. But Claire is such a support to him. If it was up to her she’d will the physical and the emotional pain away for him. Unfortunately, Jamie has to deal with the after effects himself. At least, he has other things to occupy his time thanks to his cousin and a certain political agenda. So far I am totally on board with Jared. He makes it easy for Jamie and Claire to transition into Parisian living. While he’s off in the West Indies, Jamie will take over running his wine business. They’ll get a great house to live in as well as 35% of the profits. Once again I need to be honest, all the Jacobite talk is highly important to this second season but when the conversation gets knee-deep into the politics I tend to tune out. It happened when I was reading Dragonfly. I hope it doesn’t happen here as well. What I like about the TV series is that while it will deal with it heavily, it won’t be as in-depth as it is in the book.
Kara: I can’t disagree. I’m less interested in the politics, even though I know it’s really important in this story. I’ll endeavor to be better. One thing that never fails to surprise me is Claire’s penchant for trouble. She’s not going to turn away from someone in need of help, so when she goes to investigate the sick man who is being carried off his ship, we know trouble will follow.
And it certainly does. Claire, never one to hold her tongue, declares that the men have been infected with smallpox and as a result the ship and all its contents must be burned. I don’t know who this Comte character is, but the Frasers have made a powerful enemy in him, according to Jared, and I feel like he’s going to cause a lot of trouble for them in Paris.
Tina: Oh yeah, Le Comte St. Germain — he’s going to be an interesting one to watch.
The minute I saw him, the actor stood out to me. I don’t think I’ve seen Stanley Weber in anything before but I already call great casting. He’s going to make a formidable foe. Claire has a knack for making enemies. It’s awesome. Just a couple other things, Kara. Bear McCreary‘s music is magnificent in this episode. And I can’t get enough of Weber, Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe speaking French. Can you say sexy? Please keep it coming.
Outlander airs Saturday nights on Starz at 9/8c.
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