Outlander S6 Epi2 – Allegiance
Written by Steve Kornacki & Alyson Evans | Directed by Kate Cheeseman.
This conversation is between Blacklanderz Iris, Olivia and Bella. Arranged and edited by Vida.
B: The scenery they show each week is breathtaking. It’s a good reminder of the beautiful land that the Frasers reside in.
The scenery is like a character to the story and the big sweeping landscape gives the show even more life.
I: Since I am often left wondering, where are the Native Americans in this story, I loved this episode’s cold opening with Jamie on the job as an Indian agent, and his first meeting with the one of First Nations, the Cherokee. It will be interesting to see how Jamie and Ian, with knowledge of the future from Claire and Briana, negotiate their alliances to King George, their family and Fraser’s Ridge, all while trying to be a good neighbor to the First Nation people.
B: I agree Iris, it was a great cold open. The overall view of the Cherokee settlement was a good reminder of how much has been taken away from them. It’s also clear that the Cherokee have had to respond to the White-men threat by setting up guards to confiscate the guns from strangers before entering the settlement and both Jamie and Ian understand their need to protect themselves. They’ve seen the horrors that men can inflict on others.
From the first greeting, I could see the respect Jamie has for the Cherokee people. Seeing how Jamie navigates this situation with the Native Americans will be interesting. Jamie is always caught between a rock and a hard place. But I think Jamie’s background and struggles in Scotland helps him identify with their struggle more than many other White men possibly could.
I: Chief Bird was strong in asserting Cherokee self-agency and self-determination. It is also wonderful to see the council of elders supporting their chief and re-enforcing that he is their leader, and they support him. Chief Bird stands and talks with all the authority of a true leader.
B: I had to chuckle a bit at the Leader’s direct statement about what they want. Skip the pleasantries, “We want Guns.” They know what they need and are very specific. It’s interesting to note that while the Native Americans didn’t make their statement a demand, like you said Iris, the authority in Chief Bird’s voice made it clear that they won’t accept anything less than what White men already have to defend themselves.
I: The settlers are violating the treaty and not being good neighbors. Honestly I was disappointed that Jamie wouldn’t commit to taking the Cherokees’ strong request for guns to defend themselves, or for stronger enforcement of the treaty to keep the settlers on their side of the territory line, back to the Governor. All the Cherokee leader was asking is that Jamie present his requests.
We re-created a Cherokee village and it brings another texture, another civilisation. The actors who came over, most of them from Canada, they brought their own culture. It shows the scale of what was going on with the Native Americans at that time.
B: I really liked when he referred to Jamie’s Indian name “Bear Killer.” Even though this situation was serious and tense, hearing Jamie bring a little humor to it was like book-Jamie and I missed that from previous seasons. It’s nice to see it back again. But I had the same feelings as you did Iris, I was disappointed that Jamie responded the way he did. And it was clear that Ian was disappointed too. What they were asking for was not only reasonable, but it is what Jamie would do too if he were in their position.
Well, naturally those decisions weigh on them. Who wants to a) be responsible for the lives/well-being of a large number of people who may well be on opposing sides from each other (i.e., whose side do you pick?) or b) impart information whose impact you can’t possibly evaluate?
I: I was a little confused by the bedazzled red coat, but then it occurred to me that the British probably gave it to Chief Bird as a gift to thank him for siding with them in the previous conflict and Chief Bird wore the coat to subtly remind Bear Killer, Jamie, of their past allegiance. Cherokee added a lot of swag to the redcoat.
O: I agree, Iris. This whole interplay between Jamie and the war chief, shows how Jamie is caught in the middle, trying to be honorable but also not overstating what he might be able to achieve in getting the Native Americans want from the Crown. Jamie telling him knives are more likely, shows Jamie walking this tightrope. The war chief even thanks Jamie for his honesty. We will come back to this later in the episode. Which I applaud.
B: I didn’t necessarily think the British gave it to him. I was thinking that maybe they made it in the style of the British so that when he has to deal with White men they would recognize his authority as Leader and respect him as such. Even though Jamie is friendly and diplomatic, they know they can’t really trust these men and I don’t blame them.
I: The Christies have been busy, building up their settlement. Unfortunately it looks like they are here to stay. That church is awfully big! Where are the settler’s houses?
O: Tom and his church, even before he lets his settlers build their own houses. Sheesh!
B: Exactly. He has them working night and day on building the church, while they sleep in tents with no protection from the elements.
I: Christie does not deserve Claire doctoring. I say let him continue to suffer with his hand ailment.
O: Well, Iris, She is a healer and can’t let him suffer. But this guy is just too much. She is trying to reason with him and get him to see how having surgery on the hand is necessary, but of course Christie’s religious zealotry won’t hear of it right now.
B: I absolutely love how uncomfortable he is in these situations. I laughed so hard.
I: Claire really needs to be more careful. Hasn’t she learned anything over the years? There is no way for her to win an argument with Christie and even if she gets the last word in, all it does is add more fuel to the fire. Claire also gave Tom too much information on ether and the operation she could perform on his hand. Malva is weird and not to be trusted.
B: What you said Iris reminded me of something Jamie has said in a previous season or in one of the books, I can’t remember. But basically he said that if he was to die, Claire must go back to her time because without him here to protect her she would die and this is exactly why. Claire does not guard her words, she speaks her mind and that continues to get her in trouble. Thankfully Jamie saves her but you would think by now she would be more careful. But then if she did, she wouldn’t be ‘our Claire’. I was looking at the expression on Tom’s face and to me it was like, if he could he would slap Claire into submission.
I: I think Christie is torn between wanting the surgery and his fear of anything he sees as ungodly. He’d rather suffer than give Claire any satisfaction in helping him.
O: I wonder if, besides his rigid views on religion, that some of Christie’s stubbornness is that Claire is a woman and his probable view that a woman couldn’t know about medicine? Whatever…
B: I thought the tactic Claire used with Tom was interesting. Was she trying to goad him into having the surgery? Calling him a coward to force him to prove his bravery? I don’t know. They keep reminding us about the ether Claire has and while it’s gonna be helpful to her, it’s also gonna bring them harm. Tom is talking about “I have much to do today.” I’m like: Sir, what exactly will you be doing with two crippled hands, except ordering people about.
I: I couldn’t tell if Allan really appreciates Claire’s healing advice, or if he is resentful that Claire had to give him balm to soothe the wounds from Jamie’s punishment. Claire needs to tread lightly. He also mentioned that some might see her healing as witchcraft, which shouldn’t be taken lightly. Allan seems to help with keeping Malva in check. Am I the only one that thinks this relationship is strange?
There’s a mischievous side to him but there is also a dark storyline bubbling under the surface right until the end of the season. The Allan we meet in episode one and the one we’re left with are two very different people. It’s great to work on a character arc like that.
O: Him bringing up witchcraft because of Claire’s healing makes me nervous, harking back to S1 when Claire was brought up on witchcraft charges, along with Geillis. Jamie came to the rescue, of course. I have to say, though, Alexander Vlahos playing Allan brings the right unseemly-ness to the role. This guy is not to be trusted, as we saw in Epi1.
B: I was going to say the same thing. The actors playing the Christie family are great because if you hadn’t read the books you wouldn’t be able to tell how they really are. Yet there is an undercurrent in their personality that tells you something is not right with them and they cannot be trusted.
Malva is looking for a purpose and looking for a way to break free from her very strict and controlling family who all consists of men. When she sees Claire, along with an opportunity to learn more, she’s so intensely curious. To have a woman be able to teach her these things is a dream come true for her.
It comes hand in hand with finding this mother figure, but also being able to learn and potentially use these skills to her advantage and break away from what she’s being tied to. We’ll see a lot of development, a lot of curiosity, a lot of learning, and if only it just stayed that way.
I: This was funny. Chief Bird sends the women to butter up/service. Thankfully Ian was there to help!
B: I actually screamed when this scene came on. I was so sure they would not have time for it with the truncated season. I was so happy to be wrong.
This scene is one of my favorites from the book. I love that he calls for Ian first instead of trying to address the women. And Ian’s comedic response was hilarious.
I: Jamie trying to say no without hurting their feelings. Ian enjoying every minutes of this exchange. No wonder women around the world swoon for Jamie, we all want a man that only thinks of us. Jamie is lucky Ian was able to communicate with the women and warn them off.
O: So true, Iris. This scene with Jamie and the Indian women that are bestowed on Jamie, an honored guest, was hilarious. This was great to see for me, as a book reader. It even makes Ian laugh, which was great. This humor was sorely needed. I found Epi1 especially dark and this scene brings some lightness to the party, as it were.
Jamie hissing to Ian, “there’s a woman in my bed.” And Ian’s response: “They’re there to serve you uncle.” was a hoot. And Jamie noting his fidelity to Claire. Jamie is so honorable. Gracious!
And did you all get that bit when the Indian women praise Jamie’s–ahem–attributes? This scene was full of good comic relief. I really enjoyed it.
B: I agree Olivia, this scene was like a gift to the book readers. I really enjoyed it. The whole dynamics of this scene cracks me up – Jamie being uncomfortable and Ian enjoying the moment.
And then watching Jamie take offense to the women saying, while they would love to have a child with Jamie, the red hair would be a curse was too funny. It was the levity we needed.
I: I think the kids don’t trust Malva. They can sense when something isn’t right.
O: I didn’t see much there.
B: I think Germain pointing his sword in Malva’s back was foreshadowing of what Malva will do in the future. Or, I could be reaching, who knows. LOL.
I: I just wish Claire wouldn’t invite Malva into the heart of the Fraser family until they know more about the Christies’ intent.
Malva is this very curious, intense character and Claire is in some ways really taken by her. Claire can see that hunger, desire and eagerness to expand her mind and expand her knowledge. She knows that she’s under a very oppressive father and a very oppressive brother. Claire really feels for her and wants to take her under her wing, which of course may or may not cause her some pain further down the line.
O: As a book reader, I know how this plays out. But still watching Jessica Reynolds give life to Malva makes me uneasy. Her demeanor is unsettling. I don’t trust her.
Marsali is putting on a brave face, bringing sarcastic comments by telling Malva this is what happens when you mess around with a man. Nice touch!
B: It’s interesting that Claire has such a determination to make people’s lives better, especially women, that she does not exercise caution. It’s commendable, for sure and her heart is in the right place.
But in reality, she’s encouraging rebellion and independence and during this time, it’s so dangerous that I find myself screaming at the TV, “No Claire don’t do it!” I just love Marsali; Lauren Lyle plays her to perfection!
I: I get the feeling Claire thinks there is something wrong with the baby, but she is trying her best not worry Marsali.
B: ‘The proper position for this baby would be out of my stomach’. Marsali is such a great character. Lauren brings her character to life much more than the books did. I remember Lauren saying she had to fight for more for Marsali and it paid off because I love the content they gave her.
I: It is obvious Claire is fearful for Marsali’s safety. It’s only a matter of time before she asks Marsali about the wound again.
O: She has to ask about the wound. She’s clearly concerned that Marsali was being battered.
B: I agree. It’s also interesting that the bruise didn’t affect Malva in the least, she’s seen them before on women – likely herself and her mother.
I: I think Marsali is at her wits end, with little to no help from Fergus, and trying to deliver a baby, she needs all the help and support she can get.
B: I really didn’t think Germaine was that loud but as a mother, I can say when you are fed up and exhausted, the slightest noise can send you off the rails. And I think that scene emphasized how hard it has been for Marsali.
I: I love how Claire takes time to have this difficult conversation with Marsali and try to get to the crux of the trouble between Marsali and Fergus without shaming Marsali. Claire’s approach allows room for Marsali to express her thoughts and examine her situation.
B: In this moment, she wasn’t just her physician, she was her mother and I love the bond that continues to strengthen for them.
I: This conversation breaks my heart. Specially to hear how Marsali and Fergus are struggling and how Fergus is taking his insecurities out on Marsali. It was a little sad the Marsali seemed to be rationalizing Fergus’ behavior. Marsali and Claire have a great relationship.
It’s also really enjoyable to get to do something different, but sometimes you just sort of take it with you. It can make a day on set slightly more intense because you’ve got to sort of stick with that feeling. That could be hard at times, but at the same time, also a real blessing to get to have a chance to do that.
O: I wasn’t prepared for Marsali’s explanation, that she got it only when she lashed out at Fergus with something, and he grabbed her wrist. It was good that Claire probed. I really like that we are getting more of the interplay between Marsali and Fergus. She has really grown; and we’re seeing Fergus brood over violence at the still last season and feeling guilty over what happened. Good to see César get some meaty scenes in playing Fergus!
B: You know what I really loved about this scene: it was Claire’s reaction. The sympathy on her face, her tone of voice – you can tell she adores both Marsali and Fergus and whatever it is that is going on with them, she wants to help. Anyone else have to look up what a “posser” was? I did.
I: It is amazing to see Marsali’s concern for Claire even while she is suffering. She depends on Claire, but she also wants to ensure Claire is healing from Lionel’s attack.
O: Just Marsali mentioning Claire’s rape, brings up Claire’s trauma.
B: Claire and Marsali’s acting in this scene is so amazing! I could feel the change in their moods when they both had to reflect on what happened on that horrible day! The slightest expression changes on Claire’s face and you can feel her distress. Caitriona and Lauren carry this scene wonderfully!
B: That scared the crap out of me! I was not expecting that at all.
I: Although Claire is trying to push through her trauma, it is clear that Lionel is haunting her and she is trying to be strong, for everyone. She is suffering and turning to ether more and more to quiet her mind. I am really concerned for her mental health and safety and how some might interpret her distilling and using of ether.
I was so conscious of trying to really land the right voice, her internal voice, and really find the right path for her in terms of her PTSD. What form that took, how it manifested within her, and to always make it as truthful and as plausible as possible, even within these grand circumstances.
O: As a book reader, I have reservations–let me just say it plainly–I don’t like how the writers have Claire turning to ether to go into oblivion to forget her trauma.
My first objection is how dangerous making ether was, as explained in the book anyway. And how it frighted Claire that she could blow herself up in making it. Second, I don’t see our heroine handling trauma in this way. I can see her continuing to feel the trauma, but I’d think she would reach out to Jamie and talk to him about it, not hiding her pain from him in this way. I see heras the kind of woman to deal with her trauma. What do you all think?
B: Olivia, I have read several fan’s tweets who feel the same. Honestly, I don’t have a problem with it because I really think the writers are gonna deliver on this one. Claire is always seen as so strong and fearless, but with this, she can’t cope with it on her own. But she thinks she can overcome it, like she has with everything else (which is why I think she had the flashback nightmare in Epi1. She hasn’t been dealing, she’s been suppressing all her trauma and now it’s all coming back.).
I also think she’s not telling Jamie and Bree because in her mind she cares too much for them to rekindle any memories of their own trauma. I think we are going to see Claire reach a state of emotional vulnerability that we’ve not seen her in before and it’s going to allow for us to see her need Jamie and Bree in ways we haven’t seen. At least, I hope that’s where we are going.
I: Too cute! LIzzie and Jem lighten the mood after that serious conversation between Claire and Marsali.
O: Yeah, they are cute together. I agree, Iris, a nice break.
B: I love these little moments and glimpses we see of regular life at the Ridge. It reminds us that while there are some crazy things happening there are also day-to-day life activities going on.
I: Bree and Roger have really come into their own.
O: Yes they have. They have a good rhythm together.
B: Yes, they have become a wonderful team together. The pace of this scene is so good. It’s comfortable, like home.
I: Bree seems to be finding her footing and following her calling to be an inventor. I need her to be careful.
O: Indeed, she needs to be careful. The settlers will end up calling her a witch, too.
B: She is very talented. Now we see why she had that conversation with Claire in Epi1. Like Claire, she wants to make life better for people at the Ridge and Claire was great for encouraging her to do that but Bree was more wary than Claire was.
We see in the first episode, in her conversation with Claire, Brianna is more, now than ever, worried about introducing any risky inventions in case the same happens to her. When people find out about Claire being Dr. Rawlings, that led to everything that happened to Claire. So, Brianna is trying to be very careful. Jemmy is such a priority now she wouldn’t want to do anything that would put her child in danger. But now that she knows that they’re there for the long run, she is able to scratch that itch a little bit and get that brain power muscle working again and try to incorporate future inventions into that time period without them being flagged. That’s definitely a throughline of this season that she’s trying to bring practicality and modern things to the Ridge.
I: How naive can Roger be? Christie is trying to draw him in. e realizes that Roger may be the weakest link here. Why does Christie need Roger to preach this funeral? I agree with Bree, something is not quite right here.
O: He needs the practice though, Iris, if he is to make headway as the pastoral leader of Fraser’s Ridge.
B: I’m laughing Iris because it seems no one is taking their cues from Jamie. It’s kind of funny because Roger and Claire are the more trusting ones while Jamie and Bree, although from a different time, seem to be the more suspicious.
I: She is a serious inventor and takes precautions. She doesn’t want any unnecessary fires.
B: With that scarf tied around her face, she would be a beautiful, sexy bank robber in a mid-western movie.
B: I love watching Jamie on horseback. Maybe it’s just me but I don’t see Sam when I watch Outlander. It’s like Sam doesn’t exist; it’s all just Jamie, if that makes sense. I guess it’s just a credit to how well Sam plays the character.
I: Jamie’s got a look of purposiveness and determination on his face.
O: Yeah, our man can’t wait to get home. He looks like a conquering hero, coat flapping in the wind, as he presses the horse to go at a full gallop.
B: And here’s the scene from the opening credits. It’s great matching up the episode scenes to the opening credits. The sunlight radiates on him in the perfect way. I agree Olivia, he is our Hero!
I: Jamie can’t get to Claire fast enough.
B: He was yelling for his Sassenach before he could even get into the house!!!!
I: Too funny, Mrs Bug welcomes Jamie home and he can’t get his coat off and up the stairs fast enough. Mrs Bug squeal with surprise at Jamie’s rush was delightful!
B: He barely acknowledged her LOL. At this point, she was basically in his way to finding his Sassenach. (On another note: the Fraser House is magnificent, my goodness the interior of this house is amazing!)
I: What is the rush?
B: Did he take those stairs two or three at a time?
I: I thought for a moment Jamie was going to catch Claire in an ether sleep, So glad to see she is up.
O: Yeah, me too.
B: We were all thinking the same. Thank goodness she was there and alert, ready for him. And she was half dressed, which worked out perfectly for Jamie.
It’s the first time that I’ve worked on a show that hasn’t had an intimacy coordinator from the start, where I haven’t been there from the start. So it is a different environment to come into. I have to say, in this particular case — and I promise you I’m not just saying this — they’ve been extremely welcoming, both from cast and from crew who really welcomed the role and were really interested in what the role could add.
It’s about protection, sure, but it’s also about OK what can this role actually add to the storytelling of these moments as well? What could we do differently in Season 6 that we maybe haven’t looked at before? And going into depth on some of that would probably be the biggest thing.
I: I love that their passion for one another brought a smile to Mrs Bug.
O: That was cute–another hark back to S1. Though that didn’t involve Jamie, when Mrs. Graham hears Claire and Frank go at it and the bed springs squeak and the ceiling light fixture sways when Mrs. Graham looks up.
B: Their playfulness and passion is beautiful. It’s really apart of who they are. It will never die out and one of the reasons we love them so much.They can have a slow steady night of passionate sex or a quick, fierce moment of desire and the intensity is still the same. Ms. Bug is very familiar with the goings on of her employers. I imagine she’s heard it many times before. You would think that Claire’s trauma would make her repel from Jamie’s touch, but we don’t see that. I think it shows that on some level his love and desire for her is a healing that she needs.
I: Woo-Hoo! Here is the passion and intimacy fans have come to expect from Jamie and Claire! This is what he was rushing home for! The Cherokee women’s attempt to seduce Jamie, only strengthens his passion for Claire.
O: When they actually get to it, it reminds me of their earlier days of intimacy. Especially when they end up on the floor. Remember in S1, they ended up on the floor for lovemaking after making up following an argument? This is another good scene that brings some frivolity to the couple that have now become old friends to me.
B: Olivia I was thinking of S1 too when they ended up on the floor. Somebody heard that fans outcries because they are giving us the Jamie and Claire we’ve wanted for a while now. That line “Your lucky your married to an auldman, Sassenach. Or I’d have you on your knees with your ass up in the air this minute”, was directly from the book too I think. That’s Jamie, cause he certainly would, if he had the strength.
I: He is trying to figure out the best course of action in regards to Chief’s request for more guns. Even with insight from Claire, it is still going to be a hard decision.
O: He’s got a lot to deal with, trying to figure out what to do, how to respond to the Native’s request for guns and worrying about which side they will take – the loyalists or rebels. She can’t give him a clear answer. He’s in a no-win situation at this point.
B: I liked him saying, “he’s struggling with his conscience”. It’s a reminder that to his core, he is a good, moral man – something that’s not easy to be right now. He thinks, he reasons and he plans not just for himself but for his family and their future. I love him!!!!
I: She is a sounding board for him. They are truly partners in all things.
B: Yes, he is so open with everything with her. I adore that! He not only tells her what’s happening but what he feels inside. She is not only understanding but she gives him the assurance that he needs to keep going – telling him that no matter how hard it is, he is still a much, much better man than Richard Brown, in all things.
O: Claire gives Jamie confidence here, I think, to reason the situation out.
B: Yes, Jamie is so open with everything with Claire. I adore that! He not only tells her what’s happening but what he feels inside. Claire is not only understanding but she gives him the assurance that he needs to keep going – telling him that no matter how hard it is, he is still a much, much better man than Richard Brown, in all things.
I: The Major is giving Jamie plenty of context for the Cherokee/British relationship. This relationship will not be easy to navigate.
B: This little man is so funny and long winded.
I: And now we see the allegiance that is at the crux of the episode. The allegiance seems to be fluid depending on the conflict at the moment. No permanent friends or enemies.
B: Jamie is a great Host. Keep pouring the liquor Jamie, keep pouring.
I: Ian is trying his best to be an ally to the Cherokee and his Mohawk family and do the right thing. He’s walking a fine line of his allegiance to his uncle and the Native Americans.
O: Ian is clearly uncomfortable here and making his worries about Jamie not wanting to give Cherokees weapons. Ian’s allegiance to the Natives is clear. But his allegiance to his uncle he plainly states, though. So, we see.
B: I don’t blame Ian for being pissed off. When I first watched this scene I thought Jamie straight up lied. How you gonna say they were undecided in what they want when they were very clear “We want guns!” But then I listened to what Jamie was saying, it seemed like he was saying that all the Native Americans want is for white people to stop encroaching on their land and for the Crown to take action to make them stop. So maybe if the Crown could do that then the matter would be resolved. Then all the guns they thought they needed would no longer be necessary. I could be wrong but that’s what I took from it.
I: Major McDonald allergies are ruining this serious discussion about the British/Cherokee allegiance. But at the same time, it provides Jamie the space to think through his actions or inactions on behalf of the Cherokee.
O: Now we see how the title card fit it. Good, let Maj. McDonald sneeze!
B: I loved this because I think it was straight from the book. Adso tormented Major McDonald and I hope he continues to plague him too. Adso may not be seen but he is around. LOL
I: Ian speaks his mind, but he is clear that the love/allegiance he has for Jamie and his passion for the Native Americans.
O: And Ian, though troubled, makes clear he’ll stand by Jamie.
B: Ian may not have been in the Cherokee tribe, but you can tell he feels deeply for the Native Americans’ plight. He knows that he can speak his mind with his Uncle, and he will be listened to.
I: Having knowledge and not being able to act on it has got to be the worst feeling.
O: Having such knowledge can trouble the soul.
B: I loved when Ian said, “And Us” because it was him saying that no matter what his Uncle could always count on him.
Jamie respects Ian enough to explain his actions and reasoning, so Ian could fully understand the weight of the decision that must be made.
B: I don’t know but any moments you give me of Jamie and Claire being grandparents.
I’m gonna eat it up.
Even Jamie and Claire climbing a hill holding little Germaine’s hand is gonna make my heart sing.
I: Roger seems to have a calling.
O: He looks like he knows what he’s doing.
B: Where did Jamie get that blue coat from? I don’t think I’ve ever seen it but it looks good on him! As do all things. I thought more of the Ridge would be there but this is another one of my favorite funny scenes from the book that I was sure they were going to eliminate for time and I’m so thankful they kept it in.
I think it’s more from a spiritual sense, and more of a sense that he can do some good and he can help people on the Ridge. There’s a vacancy. We apparently were expecting a minister on the Ridge, and he didn’t turn up. Roger has that background, he has that knowledge, and he can apply it for some good. I’m not entirely sure how much religion there is in it for Roger; I think it’s more from a sense of helping people really.
I: This is probably Germaine’s first funeral, but it’s a part of life and I like that they included him.
B: Again watching Jamie as a grandfather explaining these things to Germaine is just so beautiful to me. I’m a sucker for all of that.
B: Even though they are of different faiths, I think it says much that Claire and Jamie are there and praying with them. It is a stark difference between them and Tom Christie, with his intolerant self.
I: Out of the mouths of babes! How is Germaine the only one to notice that Mrs. Wilson is breathing?
O: Children often aren’t paid enough attention. They see things and are often ignored. Germaine knew the old woman was breathing.
B: Germaine calling Claire “Granny” though…my heart.
I: This will not bode well for Claire. Christie seems to think witchcraft is at play here.
O: That would shock anyone!
I: Claire does what Claire does best and steps in to make Mrs. Wilson as comfortable as she can and yet I am frightened to death for Claire.
B: They were already ready to blame Claire for this, SMH! That woman was awake and breathing before Claire got anywhere near her but of course they are gonna blame her for it.
I: Did anyone notice how some of the attendees move to the back of the church or leave. Are they scared of Claire, Mrs. Wilson or both? Claire please be careful!
B: I did! I think it’s Claire. I think with the talk already on the Ridge, anywhere she goes they probably whisper something about her witchcraft.
I: Claire showed Mrs. Wilson compassion and eased her mind that she is not long for this world.
I: This is why I am so afraid for Claire and Bree. Tom’s response to anything that doesn’t align with his religious views is that it must be the devil’s work. It will only be a matter of time before he and his flock ostracize and accuse Claire of witchcraft.
O: Of course he’d bring the devil into it.
B: This man mentions the Devil more than anything else. Everything is the Devil to him. By that one statement, he has already got those people thinking the wrong way about what happened. He could’ve easily said “It’s a miracle” or something like that. I mean they ARE in a church!
I: Claire’s diagnosis is right but it’s going to put her in more danger.
B: I’m not medical, but I didn’t even know you could *feel* or an aortic aneurysm. WOW!
O: Gosh. How do you have a conversation like that? Tell someone, at their own funeral no less, that while you’re alive now, you won’t be in a few minutes. Whew!
I: This is hilarious, imagine waking up at your own funeral to find out that your wishes were not honored about how you wanted to be funeralized.
B: Anyone else have to look up what “skinflint” is? LOL Claire already told her it was a Church but Mrs. Wilson was still calling it a barn. And I thought that crusty bread was a meager portion too. This was another funny scene from the book that I was hoping they had time to put in and I’m so thankful that they did.
I: Mrs. Wilson is an ornery old bird. Mr. Crombie is at the end of his rope.
O: Yeah, the bickering was something. You could see how this household probably behaved.
B: Notice he never answered where that brooch was though LOL. Hiram hocked it. Hiram said I fed and clothed you for 20 years and put up with your wicked tongue, I cackled.
I: I don’t think Roger can believe what he is hearing and he steps in to squash their beef.
O: Roger took charge here. Telling the family to settle their differences.
B: I love take-charge Roger. He’s usually so mild-mannered and meek but I love it when he’s forceful like this too.
I: Roger reminds Mrs. Wilson that she needed to compose and prepare herself to meet her maker.
B: Mrs. Wilson does have a wicked tongue. Roger tried to remind her that she was standing before God, and she needed to prepare herself and she busy reminding him that he stands before God too. This woman!
I: I don’t blame Hiram for waiting to pay the Sin-eater. He wanted to make sure the Sin-eater performed his duties first. Mrs. Wilson seems to agree with Hiram.
B: Did ya’ll expect the sin-eater to look like that? I don’t know from the books, I thought he would look almost like a zombie – pale, wraith-like, close to death.
I’m betting Hiram was gonna negotiate a lower price after the sin-eater had done the job.
I: So the bread and water were for the sin-eater? I guess it’s the reverse of communion and the bread and water represent the sins of the recently departed?
B: Yep, apparently by eating the food he was absorbing the sins of Mrs. Wilson, absolving her of her sins. It seemed like a really quick process. I thought more would have been involved.
I: I wonder what motivates someone to take on the sins of others. While it brings peace to the family of the recently departed, It seems like a heavy load to bear.
B: Look at the peace on Mrs. Wilson’s face at being able to witness her own sin-eating. She felt relieved and blessed. Imagine not being dead and witnessing your own funeral. That would be something! The sin-eater was quick with ‘give me my payment’.
I: The Sin-eater seems to help Mrs. Wilson compose and prepare herself to meet her maker. This ritual allowed her to see Hiram in a different light and forgive him.
O: That was good that we had a positive conclusion.
B: I like how not only did she forgive him, but she was able to admit that he had been good to her. He had taken care of her. Things she wouldn’t have said to him before. It gave them all peace.
I: Roger did good. He calmed everyone and moved the service on.
O: The funeral scene was another comic relief segment. I loved it. But Roger brought serious purpose to it, as you would expect a minister to do. He got the dead/dying mother to stop bickering with her son over what she considered the cheapness of her funeral service. And the family came to express their love for each other moments before she did finally die. Roger presided with confidence.
B: This is really Roger’s calling – his purpose in this time. He fits this role perfectly. He gives calm and serenity to the people. He doesn’t beat them with the Bible (like Tom would) but he uses it to bring comfort and light to the people as it was meant to do.
I love this role for him! Watching him struggle last season with Jamie and Militia, knowing how uncomfortable it made him to fight and kill people, it’s nice to see something that brings him contentment and purpose.
I: It’s nice to see the Frasers and Bugs enjoys a meal after that crazy funeral.
O: The Bugs are given more to do. I wonder if they will figure out more during the season.
B: These kids are the CUTEST!! Jem is absolutely adorable.
I’m also thinking we’re seeing more of Mr. and Mrs. Bug this season to set up for future seasons as well.
I: Hopeful Fergus will find his way back to Marsali soon.
O: That’s a sad moment.
B: Yeah okay, but Mrs. Bug was being nosy with that comment. She knew good and well that Fergus wasn’t coming to join them. The whole entire Ridge knows where Fergus spends his days and nights and you know she’s been gossiping about it too. Nosy biddy!
I: Lizzie needs to give Bree a chance to talk.
O: That puts a monkey into things. Mind your business, Lizzie.
B: She is a mess. First of all, shouldn’t you be serving food? Her and Mrs. Bug can’t seem to just set the food and leave. LOL
B: You see how quick Jamie jumped up! He was ready to celebrate.
I: Poor Bree, she is under pressure to get pregnant and no one seems to appreciate or understand her invention skills.
O: The response is underwhelming. I’d be disappointed, too. But it’s good her Da praises her.
B: Did anyone else hear that WAH-WAH-WAH that you hear when a line falls flat? I felt so bad for Bree.
This scene was the definition of: No one asked for this. Poor Bree.
These, uh matches will be very useful.
I think it’s wonderful, darling, and
I, for one, can’t wait to use them.
I’m like, “I am a minister.” There’s a mixture of reasons as to why and how Roger’s fallen into that. One, through necessity, because there was that vacuum needing filling on the Ridge for a man of faith to help people. More so for Roger, it’s on a practical level than one of faith. He feels that he can step into that role and he can help people and he can do some good there. He was raised by a minister. He’s resisted going down that path. But he has lived it, he has the experience, he has the knowledge, which he can put into a practical use rather than it being one of staunch faith, which is what Tom Christie [Mark Lewis Jones] is. Roger’s approaching it from a different place, a place of being able to help the community. Had you asked him, I don’t think he would ever have said that that was a path that he would have went down. It causes a little bit of friction at home. Not too much. But they have just found this new peace between their family and their household. And now, Bree and Roger realize just how much of a commitment it will be to minister on the Ridge, and that’s going to take a little bit away from the Mackenzie household. So we’ll see where that takes us.
I: Yes Roger did a good job preaching the funeral! Thank god we were spared the fire and brimstone that Tom probably would have preached.
B: I imagine that Roger’s style of preaching is not Tom’s style so I’m wondering if there is another motive behind Tom asking him to preach.
B: I wish they all would listen more carefully to Jamie. Jamie knows Tom will use religion as a weapon to divide people; sow seeds of dissension and contention. Jamie wants peace, that’s all we’ve heard him talk about and he knows that Tom threatens the peace he wants to have.
“You’re not a minister,” that’s Brianna’s party line.
I: Why isn’t Claire alarmed that people continue to think she is a witch, this is not funny! Jamie has a good point about Roger preaching lessens Tom’s chances of stirring up his group of followers, however, I am sure it won’t stop Tom.
O: Everywhere she goes, people think Claire’s a witch.
B: Yeah Iris, I didn’t like that Claire is so dismissive of it. Did you see the alarm on Jamie’s face?? He knows that this is not good and it’s something to be taken seriously.
I’m once again struck by how contemplative Jamie is, he doesn’t react, he thinks. He didn’t say anything, he just knows what he has to do and he prepares himself. He’s so awesome. And once again neither Claire or Roger are bothered in the least, while Jamie and Bree are continuously cautious and suspicious.
I: Poor Marsali, I hope she and the bairn will be alright.
O: Yeah, this is serious.
B: It was just a good idea on Claire’s part to bring Marsali and the kids to the Ridge, imagine if she had been far away when this happened and had to send Germaine running across the Ridge to find help.
I: Jamie senses Claire’s worried about the baby! Finally, she can admit to someone she is worried and concerned.
B: Don’t you just love the dynamic between them. How he listens and learns from her every chance he gets. I fall more in love with them with every episode. And they are each other’s confidants.
Now Claire has a chance to unload her worries to him. And he can fill in the words she cannot speak. Not that either of them will have the answer to their respective worries but it brings some relief to just speak it.
I: Fergus is in his feelings and not supporting Marsali in her hour of need.
B: This Fergus content is wonderful and hurtful at the same time. I wanted more for him in past seasons and now we get it but I hurt for him and Marsali too.
I: Partner guilt can be powerful. It’s almost like survivors remorse. Jamie’s words put Fergus’ actions as selfish as they may be in context. We don’t talk enough about how assault and rape affects the partner of the victim too and the toll it takes on everyone.
O: Jamie, talking about his own guilt here about not being able to prevent what’s happened to Claire, gives some legitimacy to Fergus’s feelings, if not his behavior, I thought.
B: Jamie shows Claire that he and Fergus feel the exact same way; they just choose to express it differently. I remember in Epi1, Jamie expressed it by following Claire everywhere she went. Fergus is expressing it differently. Another thing I really appreciated about this is Jamie’s wisdom to send Roger after Fergus and not go himself. He knew Roger was the best man to go and that he would be able to speak with Fergus in a way that Jamie could not, trying to reach him.
I: Does Claire really need Malva? I don’t think she needs to be there absorbing all of what Claire does.
O: Malva starting her apprenticeship, it seems.
B: As a book reader, I’m side-eyeing Malva in every single scene. I’m like, ya’ll can’t see this girl is off????
I think that Jamie found the respect for Roger. There was a lot of misunderstanding between the two of them from the off, but he’s seen him in the light of what he is and has a respect and admiration for Roger, which will presumably continue from here on in.
I: Roger’s riding like a prof on his way to Fergus
O: Roger’s looking strong here. I thought it was Jamie at first.
B: No one has the white stallion, except Jamie. LOL
Jamie took him out of his life [in the Paris brothel] and that was actually worse than just losing one hand. Fergus grew up in a brothel where he was abused and where he witnessed horrible things, and I think the life Jamie gave him is enough that his loyalty will go to losing a hand. Of course, growing up he now thinks that his position in the Ridge is not secured. It’s secured by love, but it’s hard for him to find a job to be fulfilled and to help his family.
This is something that is growing inside him where it’s just getting worse and worse.
I: Roger gives Fergus a hard talk. Time to man up Fergus, get out of your feeling and support Marsali as she gives birth to your child.
O: Yes, Roger. Talk some sense into Fergus! Roger is definitely coming into his own. I love to see it!
B: Roger was AMAZING in this scene! I’m just loving his role on the Ridge. He is calm and persuasive when he needs to be, then he turns it up and he’s forceful and demanding when the situation calls for it!
Jamie took him out of his life [in the Paris brothel] and that was actually worse than just losing one hand. Fergus grew up in a brothel where he was abused and where he witnessed horrible things, and I think the life Jamie gave him is enough that his loyalty will go to losing a hand. Of course, growing up he now thinks that his position in the Ridge is not secured. It’s secured by love, but it’s hard for him to find a job to be fulfilled and to help his family.
Roger told him straight and I was so proud of him for saying that. I loved it!
I: Claire is doing everything she can to reassure Marsali, that she and the baby will be ok.
O: It’s heartbreaking to hear Marsali bring up the prospect of her death in childbirth, but then tries to bring humor to the situation.
I: I can’t imagine thinking you and your baby may die at a time that should be the happiest in your life. Marsali manages to find a little humor for her and Claire. No autopsy here.
O: She is still bringing the humor, no autopsy for her that’s for sure. Still…you feel for her.
B: Adso just shows up at the right time. Yes, she brought a little humor but like they say behind every joke is a little truth. How do you prepare yourself for your death leaving behind little children with a father behaving like Fergus? So devastating.
I: Marsali wanting to write to her mother in case she doesn’t survive childbirth is so sad! Claire will do everything she can.
O: It’s gonna be alright, Marsali. Her fear is palpable now. No humor here.
B: So sad, but so realistic too!
I: Well it’s about time Fergus is finally beside Marsali.
O: Finally. Yes, you belong here, Fergus.
You didn’t get any part of that wrong, but there are a few more things to it, which is to research the scene itself, the nature of the scene, particularly for something like this because it was so specific, with what would be required to bring on birth. And also for the time period as well so just doing research on that and also the choreography element of it as well. Where are arms, where are limbs going, exactly what the placement is going to look like so we can tell the story appropriately through the body.
B: Oh Fergus, I love you. I’m so happy you showed up! I love these two so much. And when he calls her these French endearments, it warms my heart.
I: Fergus and Marsali love will get them through this. Fergus is using some of the skills he learned in the brothel to help ease Marsali’s pain and fear.
I did loads of research into giving birth at the time, and what that meant, and what it would be like to have four children and be so young. The costume department made corsets with little wooden windows that you could open to breastfeed and then shut again. I really knew what I was talking about when it came to her and her experience at the time.
O: It was good to see Marsali’s and Fergus’ love physically expressed.
B: This is the part that brought me to tears. Their love for each other is so touching! No matter what, Fergus loves her and his family and to be able to help her through this was a beautiful expression of his feelings.
B: Fergus’ was such a great help to her. You imagine that most men shy away from the birthing process, but Fergus’ background really helps him bring comfort to Marsali in ways other men would not be able to do. And when he said, ‘you won’t die because I won’t let you go’, my tears came even harder. Fergus is a romantic who loves very deeply.
I: This conversation is hilarious. Malva is certainly learning a lot.
O: Again, I like the humor here, with the sounds of Marsali and Fergus lovemaking.
B: Jamie and Bree are so much alike and it’s funny!
I: Hopefully Malva is learning that Tom doesn’t know everything and that there is pleasure in life.
O: Sex-ed 101 for the 18th Century. And yes, Malva, many women enjoy it.
Malva has a lot of kind of modern-day tendencies and ways of thinking. And that’s why Claire, I think, connects with her.
B: Claire is really coming to view Malva in a daughter-like position.
This is like a mother-daughter talk that Malva didn’t get from her own mother.
I: It’s clear that Ian is suffering. I hope he finds his way back to his wife and child soon!
Despite it being one of the strongest seasons, it was also one of the most difficult to shoot. But it is my favourite season so far, it is just so strong, the storylines throughout it – it feels like there is a change of pace, there is an ominous feeling that is happening this season. It is sort of like Harry Potter when it was getting darker, it is a little bit of that feeling that we can’t stop this inevitability.
O: You can see the heartbreak on Ian’s face as he learns how his Indian brothers will not fare so well.
B: I appreciate that Bree is so honest about the ways of White men, how they will trick the Native Americans and then displace them. And you gotta love Ian – torn between two worlds – but taking on the unjust treatment of the Native Americans as his own.
Now, Young Ian’s a bit different. He is an Indian, if not Cherokee. He does know, value, and love these people, and while he still has personal affections for the white side of his family, he knows—from what Claire and Bree (and maybe Roger) have told him, which side is going to come out best in the time to come. His sense of ‘the good’ is much clearer than Jamie’s, because it’s more sharply focused. For him the question isn’t a question, and reason is not required: if there are guns to be had, then the Indians should have them.
I: Thank you for the important announcement Lizzie.
B: Rollo!!!!! I love seeing Rollo side-by-side with Ian. It’s the little things that mean so much!
I: Finally the bairn is here! But what does that look of concern on Claire’s face mean? Why does it take so long to show the baby to Marsali?
O: Claire’s face telegraph that all is not quite normal.
I: The clan is gathered for the birth of Marsali and Fergus new bairn
What Fergus has to witness having been abused himself, having grown up in such an abusive world, when he sees what happened to Claire he’s just so connected to Jamie that he feels the same way. He failed her. There’s no such thing as, oh, we saved them. No, they arrived too late. It’s not a happy ending for Fergus and Jamie what happened at the end of season 5. He’s struggling with all that, and they’re expecting this new kid. I think Marsali and Fergus fix a lot of their problems with having new kids that are beautiful and functioning and cute, but this new kid might be even more challenging than whatever they had to go through before.
I: Everyone was so relieved to hear the baby. Just when I thought the Fergus we love is back, he breaks my heart again! Can’t the baby be enough.
B: Yeah you could hear a pin drop in that one moment when everyone held their breath waiting for the cry. And that sigh of relief when you hear it. What a beautiful sound!
I: I think Marsali is done for now having babies!
B: One would hope she was done! I mean what were they trying to do, build their own basketball team!
I: It was heartwarming to hear Fergus speaking French to the bairn.
B: The way Claire stole a look at Marsali and watched Fergus for his reaction was so tense. I could tell she was hoping and praying for a positive response while still knowing its not gonna be good.
I: Fergus breaks our heart. How could he do this to their son?
O: I don’t like it that he left after learning his son is a dwarf.
Fergus wasn’t there in time enough for Marsali, so because of that he thinks she [felt like she] had to kill Lionel Brown. And the abuse that Claire went through reflects a lot on what he suffered as a younger kid. But then, I think, Fergus somehow thinks that [the birth of] his new child will solve lots of problems. You know, new child, new baby, new chapters. But then everything is 10 times worse because Henri-Christian is a dwarf.
B: I feel for all of them. This is another reminder to Fergus that he has failed as a husband and a father. He contributes this situation directly to the attack on his wife that he could not protect her from. He takes the responsibility all on himself. He doesn’t know how to deal with this further reminder of his failure.
I: Fergus has a lot of growing up to do.
B: It was so sad but Fergus has an awareness of the world that Marsali does not have.
I think there is a really good bridge between the problems and the worries Fergus has and then his dwarf child and how he fears for him. Fergus is like, ‘If I cannot find my position, if I cannot be useful to the Ridge, how could that kid be?’ It’s all about that. It’s real challenging adult problems for this young couple.
He knows how his son will be treated and Fergus, with his handicap, may not be able to protect him either.
It’s a heavy weight to bear for a young husband that already feels inadequate and insecure.
I: I feel so badly for Marsali and the baby. Hopefully the love of family with give them strength.
I: Marsali loves this child as any mother would no matter what.
O: Yet, Marsali beams at her son. Nothing beats Mother Love!
B: Love that Claire added “but he’s perfectly healthy”. She’s hopeful that Marsali’s reaction will not be like Fergus’; that she won’t reject the baby.The joy and happiness on Marsali’s face at the sight of her son. She knows he’s different and it doesn’t matter; she loves him completely at first sight of him.
There’s no hesitation in her at all. She adores him and calls him “beautiful”! You get the feeling that Marsali is going to love this little one in a deeper way than her other children. She’s going to cherish this little ‘wee’ one. Her response to her baby made me cry again!
I: Bree tucking Jem in and kissing him reminds us that a mother’s love has no bounds.
I: Fergus can learn a lot from Jamie and Roger on how to be a loving and supporting husband and father.
O: At least Roger appreciates that Bree could make matches. I was surprised when Roger and Bree said they’d been trying and Bree notes no success yet at getting pregnant again.
B: Roger supports Bree the way Jamie supports Claire. I think he learned a lot from watching Jamie and Claire. Roger is a great listener. He draws people, including Bree, out and encourages them to talk about their feelings.
I also think it’s that thing of whether Brianna even wanted to be a mother before or not. I think once you’ve had a kid–and I haven’t, so speaking from how I played it—that love is so magnificent, I can imagine, and overwhelming, that having another is like, why not, if you can expand that love? Bree was an only child. I think for Jemmy, the idea of having a sibling would be magical for Bree. So I think all of those things play. But I do also think the worry is also Roger. We know Bree can have children, maybe Roger can’t, and in that time you can’t just go get tested.
I: This little fellow has taken a shine to Roger.
B: This little one is so cute. He can’t find anything else in the dark, but he can certainly find Roger Mac’s house. He loves Roger already.
[V: I was thinking the same thing. How on earth did he know how to get to their house, in the dark?!}
I: Naive Roger is back. Aidan is going to go and tell everyone about “Roger and Bree’s” magic. Once again the Frasers will be in danger.
O: Careful, Roger. The settlers will think all Fraser and MacKenzie families practice the Dark Arts.
B: Yeah Roger’s heart is in the right place. But, I agree that there should be more caution taken. At least instead of calling it magic, he called it a “marvel” and “science”. But it made little Aiden’s heart happy for a moment and it gave Roger a chance to give his wife her due praise. That smile on Bree’s face was worth it.
I: Loving Jamie’s relationship with the Bugs and everyone on the Ridge.
Lizzie is so thirsty and what is up with her, Kezzie and the brother? I sense some up coming drama around these three.
O: Hah, I’m looking forward to seeing the Lizzie and Beardsley storyline develop, and the Bugs.
B: Oh my goodness this foreshadowing: sending Arch Bug to Cross Creek and River Run is an excellent set up to future storylines. And Claire is busy trying to teach Malva the birds and the bees, but nobody is paying attention to Lizzie over here with the Beardsley twins. There’s an undercurrent of stories just waiting to happen and I’m so here for it.
Um, did anyone else think that the basket of bread and sausage for a week was a bit heavy??? Or maybe I’m reaching again.
I: Chief Bird is not happy with Jamie! What does Chief Bird mean this is not the last you will see of us?
O: Are you sure, Jamie? The Cherokee don’t like this news that Jamie won’t recommend they get guns. This might not end well.
B: Jamie how you gonna say “you must trust me, it’s for the best”?
Really, why should they trust you? What have you done for them? And how do you get to decide what is best for the whole Cherokee nation? UGH!!!!!
Jamie what are you doing????!!!!!
I: Ian is at the fork road! He is a true ally to the Cherokees, and he will do what he can to help them. Hopefully Jamie can understand his position.
O: Will this disagreement cause a lasting fissure between them?
B: Ian was 100% right. Even Jamie said earlier that a man has a right to defend himself and he should not take that right away from him.
I: Nothing like a little father and daughter time cleaning guns and having a heart to heart.
Jamie’s got the weight of the world on his shoulders, Tom Christie, The Cherokee, Ian and Fergus!
O: Yes, it’s good to see father and daughter spending time together and talking about things. Jamie dealing with the prospect of war and Christie’s brand of religion that can bring about its own kind of war. That’s a very astute observation, Jamie.
B: “I’m not sure there’s ever anything in this world put right by gunpowder and bullets”. Poor Jamie, he’s trying to prevent something that is inevitable. It’s history that he cannot change or bend to his will; he has to accept and do what he can to navigate through it.
And yeah everybody heard about how much time Roger has spent helping Amy McCallum. I tell you, the ridge gossip mill could be like a modern day TMZ or something.
Also let me say, ever since Bree came back we have been screaming for father-daughter moments like this. I’m thrilled that the writers heard us. It doesn’t have to be huge, long scenes, little moments like these say a great deal and mean a lot.
B: Jamie riding up on his white stallion showing everyone that he runs this place. He is king! I love it!!!!
I: I get the feeling the church is way bigger than Jamie thought it would be. Jamie plays the Freemason card, reminding Tom of their “brotherhood”. Finally he sets some boundaries with Tom, the church has to be opened to all including Claire. Is Jamie leaning towards the Quaker faith?
O: Jamie checkmates Tom again but stating the church will not serve just Protestants and Catholics, but be a meeting house for all. And saying put a bell in the steeple, which could be rung to alert people to a schoolhouse. Check Mate. Well done.
B: Those twitching fingers are a tell-tale sign of Jamie Fraser. He knows your motives Tom. Don’t think for one moment that you have caught Jamie Fraser slippin’. This was so smart of Jamie to remind Tom of his vow. And he knows very well that Tom has been instigating the comments about Claire and he knows Tom’s ability to make it stop. Jamie ain’t no fool. He knows what’s going on. Yes, Olivia, I agree it was a checkmate. Very well done! And window panes, Jamie is sure to add as he walks away, I hollered.
He’s trying to step out of his dad’s shadow and become the man he believes that he is, and by doing so in the first couple of episodes he is trying to force his way into having his own identity. He ruffles a few feathers and sets in motion with his sister a chain of events that trickles all the way through season six and causes disruption and carnage.
Oh, more will be revealed for sure. From Tom’s point of view, his life experience has pushed him towards this ultra Protestantism, as you say, almost like a zealot. In a way, he only trusts God. He’s imposed that upon his children and he tries to impose it upon the people he arrives with into Fraser’s Ridge. He’s harder on himself than anyone really. He hasn’t got some secret life where there’s a life of the luxury. He is extremely hard on himself. So he’s quite genuine in a way. The madness of his beliefs, he truly believes in them, it’s not put on. But it makes him a very difficult person to be around, particularly for his children and anyone who comes into contact with him. We see that straight away in Ardsmuir, and by the time he arrives in Fraser’s Ridge years later, it’s got worse.
I: Tom can’t stand being put in his place, especially in front of his children.
O: I still can’t get over Tom Christie’s insistence that a church be built before any of his settlers build cabins for themselves. But of course we know by now that Christie is all for a show of piety, rather than really practicing true Christian compassion.
B: Jamie humbled him and he had no word to say otherwise. He had to concede and bow down. It’s really showing his children the lack of power he really has and you’re right, Tom hates it
With Tom, with Malva, it’s very clear where they’re at. But with Allan, he has a contrasting episode where he’s quite clearly introduced as his father’s carbon copy. And does what his father says. Whereas actually, he’s incredibly mischievous and a liar. That’s the very first clear flag for everyone is that Allan lies. Allan lies to get further in life. And he lies because he’s clearly not happy with who he is. With all three characters, they find themselves on Fraser’s Ridge, hoping for something a bit different from their previous life. That stealing of the powder horn sets in motion for Allan and for the Christies a train track and a train ride heading toward a lot of carnage and chaos on Fraser’s Ridge.
I: Tom is a coward. Instead of pushing back on Jamie, he takes out his anger on Malva, who wasn’t present to hear his exchange with Jamie.
O: Everyone in that house has a dark soul.
When we came to do it, it’s one of those things that looks brutal, but it was handled really well. And the way it comes in the story is interesting because the person we never see, but is always apparent in the Christie family, is the mother, of course. For Tom, there’s a strange kind of revenge on Malva for the way he was treated by his wife, by her mother. The beating of Malva has other stuff going on for Tom, and I think Malva knows that.
All of the beatings, they have other meanings. I felt at the time that there [were] so many layers to that beating at the end of Epi2. And it was really about his inability to let go the hurt he felt from his wife, who died while he was in Ardsmuir.
B: Tom walked in that tent looking for something, anything to be mad about! Everything could have been perfect and he still would have found something to be angry about. And with Tom’s words it’s clear what his problem is: in this land of milk and honey, he has nothing, especially in comparison to Jamie Fraser. He has no land, no power, no control. Jamie has it all. I wonder if the show will explain more about their mother and what really happened because we all know Tom’s version of their mother has got to be skewed.
I: Malva’s lucky Tom’s limp hand kept him from whipping her.
B: The way Malva was ready for this whipping, makes me wonder how many times before has this girl been whipped?
Tom is too cruel, ready to beat this girl for no good reason.
There’s an important paradox with the kids being punished and gaining the audience’s empathy. It’s always that argument of nature versus nurture. Are these guys this way because of the strict religion they’ve been placed under and the strict parenting style? Does that justify some of the things that are to come? We see them in these very vulnerable situations, and no one should be physically punished in that way. Then, we see things that they do to other people, and we think maybe they need to be punished that way.
I: Malva’s like, right old man, I can‘t wait to get away from you!
O: Malva don’t play.
B: Tom may be a cruel man, but he sees something in Malva too. He knows there’s something in her that’s not right.No one in this family has good intentions. I was afraid he was going to backhand her but then I thought, no, Tom wouldn’t want others to see the marks he leaves on his children.
I: Ian is a deep soul! Even though his heart is breaking he still finds time to pray for Henri -Christian and show him some fatherly love.
They say don’t work with kids and animals and I’ve literally just constantly worked with kids and animals on Outlander.
I: I feel for Ian and I want to know why he isn’t with his wife and child? I need Ian to be OK!
O: Here it comes, Ian’s trauma. I love his gentle cradling of Henri-Christian. His love shows.
B: I believe this was a change from the books. Because in the books he tells this to Bree. But the change works and it’s natural that he would say this while holding a newborn that could remind him of his own child.
And I love that Marsali didn’t push him for more details. They know Ian will tell them when he is ready. And I really loved how he helped her get insight into Fergus. Fergus is grieving right now, and he has to do it in his own way but he’ll come back to her.
I: Now Jamie can understand why Ian is so insistent on help the Cherokee and other First Nation people.
B: Jamie needed to hear this. I think before this he underestimated Ian’s attachment but now he truly understands how deep it goes.
And that Ian will do whatever he needs to to help the Native Americans.
I: Doesn’t Tom know lying is not Christian like?
He is quick to forget the lord’s words when it benefits his means! He only wants the operation so he can beat Malva and not appear weak to his flock.
I wish Claire had never offered to fix his hand.
O: Yeah, he will get the operation now, so he can beat Malva properly. Man, get out of here!
B: Yep Tom is continuing to use religion as a weapon against his children.
If his actions were sanctioned by God he should have no hesitation telling Claire, ‘I need my hand fixed so I can whip my children’.
But no he wouldn’t dare say that, cause he knows he’s wrong but too much of a bastard to admit it.
I: In these polarizing times its refreshing to see someone (even if its only on a TV show) who has an open mind!
Now that Jamie has more information and he better understands Ian’s situation, He is willing to reconsider his position and take a risk to help Ian and the Cherokee.
O: We see Jamie’s good character here. He changes his mind. He’s been receptive to Ian’s concerns. I love seeing the wax on the letter he writes, and the seal affixed to it. I love these realistic touches that Outlander has been known for from its inception. Kudos.
B: We’ve seen this before too. Jamie is a man that is not afraid to say he was wrong, and his thinking needs to be changed. He understands that it doesn’t make him less of a man, it makes him a better man. He is always looking to grow in his knowledge and understanding and in that way he is much better than many other men in his time. I love the line when he said, ‘the Mohawk are Ian’s family, so his allegiance is to them and Jamie’s allegiance is to Ian’.
He, uh . . . had a child with this Mohawk wife.
He fights for them . . . they are his family.
His allegiance is to them.
And my allegiance is to him.
Well, I think it’s the right thing to do.
It’s reason versus instinct, but both Jamie and Young Ian are men of courage, honor and decency, and neither one will turn aside from an action he feels justified. In the end, per show (it doesn’t happen quite this way in the books), Jamie is led to share Ian’s point of view upon realizing the closeness of Ian’s ties to his Indian family. This is more or less reasonable, if we see Jamie as what he is: a member of a close-knit tribe (clan) himself, trained from birth to protect those he sees as his responsibility. With Ian’s revelations, he now sees the Indians as part of Ian’s family, and thus, a part of his.
By proxy, the Native Americans are Jamie’s family too.
Come what may.
Episode Rating (1-5 Shots)
We give this episode a solid 4-shots! This episode really delved into how important family is and no matter how messy it can get, it is always best to find a way to work through differences and unite around shared experiences. It also demonstrates how important it is not to let differences polarize people to the point where you forget to see the common humanity people of all religions and ethnicities share.
ABOSAA is a favorite and we have been looking forward to this season for a while now. This episode was so true to the book. It brought a healthy mixture of emotions between sadness, laughter, fear and anger. It also showed the many different stories converging together on the Ridge in a great way. In one episode we saw progression in even minor story lines of the Bugs, Lizzie and the Beardsley’s, Aiden and others. The episode didn’t feel cluttered or rushed. The pacing felt right; the writing was great; the transition between scenes flowed naturally without feeling disjointed. It was a solid episode that brought us the characters that we all know and love. The theme of “Allegiance” permeated through the various storylines in the episode. There was some much needed First Nations/settler interaction, which demonstrated how these conflicts and alliances/allegiances were nuanced and fluid in ways we don’t normally think about.
This episode showed a lot of character development and growth. There was more development of Marsali and Fergus, which was greatly needed and appreciated They delved into what is plaguing their relationship and the challenges they will face in the future adds another layer to life on the Ridge. Roger’s growth as a husband, lay preacher and brother figure to Fergus was welcomed, also his strength of character and good judgment. We also got a little tease of Ian’s backstory and hopefully we will get more of it this season.
Although there were various stories being developed at once, the writers did an excellent job in still making you feel that Jamie and Claire were the center of it all and everything, in some way, connects back to them. We were pleasantly surprised how the writers were able to give so much detail in the episode while setting up for future episodes and story line development as well.
The only downside for one of us is the way they are portraying Claire’s trauma with her use of ether. It’s a departure from the book. We are also concerned that Claire and Bree are not being more careful to cloak their knowledge and skills from accusations of witchcraft.
There were two favorite scenes in this episode. The funeral was truly hilarious where we could not help but laughed out loud. We also wonder how often scenes like that played out that way in real life before modern medicine. We enjoyed the interaction between Mrs. Wilson and Mr. Crombie, and how they were able to make peace before she really passed away.
The other favorite scene was Fergus, Marsali and the birthing of their child. Lauren Lyle and César Domboy were FANTASTIC in that scene. How they played off each other and gave their everything to it. We had never seen Fergus and Marsali demonstrate so much love for each other and it was beautiful. The way Fergus showed up for Marsali, his comforting and loving way of soothing her, assuring her that everything would be all right, and that he would take care of her was truly touching. When he told her that she could not die because he wouldn’t let her, our hearts screamed. It was so romantic and touching even during such a tense moment. Tears wouldn’t stop.
All the major characters brought it. Even in quiet moments the characters facial expressions, body language and movements conveyed the story very well. We are always amazed at how well Sam and Cait play off each other. However, the stand outs for us go to Lauren Lyle and César Domboy for their portrayals of Marsali and Fergus. When Lauren fearing her death was imminent, then when she pulled through and then smiling at her newborn with great love, was very moving. And César embodied Fergus’ pain over his guilt, inadequacy and then grief over his newborn’s malady. Jon Bell was another stand out in his portrayal of Ian. We saw him trying to do right by the Cherokees for the right reason. You understand that his Mohawk family is just as important to him as the Frasers are to him. All his interactions with Jamie, Bree and with Marsali were all touching.
What more can we say about Outlander’s attention to details? The Cherokees costumes stood out, once again. The similarities between the way the Chief mixes the redcoat jacket with Cherokee embellishments, amulets and symbols correlates to how Ian adapts his colonial clothing to how the Mohawks dress. But we also want to point out Roger and Jamie’s attire for the funeral. Their blue coats were finely done and very impressive.
In period dramas, the scenery/location can be a character and Outlander understands that. The aerial view of the Christie church and community on the Ridge was amazing, it really illustrated the ruggedness of a settler’s life and how large Fraser’s Ridge is. Simply gorgeous. We also appreciated the scoping panoramic views that really draws the audience into their world.
What we are looking forward to in S6 Epi3.
Iris: I am looking forward to the mending of Fergus’s and Marsali’s relationship and how they deal with having a special needs child in the colonial era. I also am looking forward to learning more about Ian’s backstory and why he isn’t with his wife and child. Follow Iris on Twitter – @IJMeTV.
Olivia: I’m looking forward to more Fersali (as we like to call Marsali and Fergus). After Fergus walks out, I am looking forward to seeing more of their story. Follow Olivia on Twitter – @newsollie.
Bella: I am looking forward to a few things. First, I want to see the writer’s purpose in having Claire use ether to deal with her trauma. It is odd that Jamie has not picked up on the fact that something is wrong with Claire and I would like to see him and Bree become aware and seek to help her. Second, Rogers’ place on the Ridge being even more pronounced by seeing him interact with the settlers. Third, the reaction of the settlers to Henri Christian and how everyone deals with that. Fourth, Ian confiding in someone about his own pain; hopefully, it will be Bree. I think they have a unique cousin-bond that may move him to open up to her. And last, more Fergus and Marsali content. Their story is so good, simultaneously painful, and heart wrenching. Follow Bella on Twitter – @BellaDameNoir.
Outlander S6 Epi3 – Temperance
~ Video via STARZ
Roger comes to Henri-Christian’s aid after he’s bullied by a few Fisherfolk lads who believe the baby is a demon. Fergus is distraught over the child’s treatment and worries about his future. Meanwhile, a friendship blooms between Young Ian and Malva.
The Skye Boat Song (Duet Version) | Outlander: S6
~ Video via SonySoundtracksVEVO
O: I wonder what you think of this interpretation of the Skye Boat song. I do love Bear’s creativity in coming up with different styles for the song. Though, my favorite, of course, is from S1.
B: Olivia, on the title song, I don’t know what it is, but I still get goosebumps listening to it. I never skip the opening song (although I normally do on other shows I watch). For me, the opening song is like part of each episode, and I love it. Like you, I do love this rendition, but S1 will always be my favorite.
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3 thoughts on “Blacklanderz®Convos! Outlander S6 Epi2 – Allegiance”
Thank you for your beautiful and intelligent reviews. I say beautiful because some of the vitriol from other fans has been so unfortunate and distracting from enjoying and talking about the show. I look forward to your review notifications in my inbox. You have a great format and I’m so glad that you hung in there to be a perspective of diversity in Outlander fandom. Grace and Peace ~L
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Wow, thank you so much. We truly appreciate your feedback. Your comment is exactly why we formed this group. And, have no fear, we aren’t going anywhere! 🙂 ~ V
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Thank so much for your kind words! I am so glad you appreciate our point of view.