Finally! Have you forgotten all about Outlander? What’s it been? A month and a half since Outlander’s season 3 ended? Longer? Blame some of it on my goddamn 2-week cable outage! Well, at least part of it. Onward!
My Seven Favorite Outlander Season 3 Episodes
It should come as no surprise to you (if you’ve read each episode post) that I have a favorite Outlander character. Of course, those are going to be my top four. I have a second favorite character. Those two episodes follow. And we’ll round out the list with the appearance of a familial-adjacent character.
[All in the form of a “Sunday Seven,” but on Friday instead of Sunday. Apparently, my mind only works in increments of seven now.]
Two Weeks in Hell Heck
Two weeks ago—TWO WEEKS! FOURTEEN DAYS!—on January 19, I was working on my Outlander season 3 favorite episodes post. I began having difficulty saving the in-progress post as I had no internet connection. Not a big problem, I thought. My router is getting old and it sometimes “burps” offline for a few minutes. I had the backup plan to write the post offline, then copy and paste when the time was right.
And so season 3 of Outlander goes out with a bang—if you’re me. Or a whimper, if you’re nearly everyone else. I actually understand the criticisms and agree with some of them. The episode was disjointed; there wasn’t a clear narrative; the writers tried to check beloved book scenes off their list; the token sex scene wasn’t that great. (But then, ever since the reunion episode, Claire and Jamie sex has either bothered me or bored me.) Yet, at the end, I felt satisfied. Even a bit energized to possibly read the next book in the series, The Drums of Autumn. Thankfully, that urge has passed.
Much like the episode, this week’s seven thoughts are disjointed, and in most cases, have nothing at all to do with the story. And here they are:
Quite a dichotomy, yes? Fortunately, the squicks are among the first two scenes, leaving us with a remainder of nothing but great. (Incidentally, both squicks are taken from Voyager, while much of the great was new.) It’s also obvious that the dozen or so storylines introduced this season are trying to get wrapped up. Let’s discuss.
Yet another “I don’t really care” episode for me. Which means, I’m not particularly motivated to write about it. When then means the post will likely be really late. But let’s get to it.
Uncharted, Episode 311
1. Run Stumble through the jungle
The first 15 minutes or so was Claire stumbling through the jungle, encountering all sorts of problems; no food, no water, sun, snakes, fire, ants, fire ants. I hate these kinds of survival storylines. Probably because we know the star of the show isn’t going to die, so it’s just tedium to get through. Regardless of how terrific the actor is. And Caitriona Balfe is truly terrific.
(I remember an episode of Magnum, P.I. where Thomas was lost and disoriented in the ocean. It turned out to be a great episode, mostly because through flashbacks we learned so much about his background. But it took a long time before I could watch the episode in its entirety.)
“Heaven and Earth” had its problems, but the good far outweighed the bad. Added bonus: I bawled my eyes out. Granted, while bawling isn’t necessarily an enjoyable experience, it shows how the episode pulled me in and made me feel part of the story.
It took me two false starts (and many false starts on the blog post) before I could settle in and watch “The Doldrums” in its entirety. It was jarring; it didn’t feel like Outlander.
People watch Outlander for many reasons. It pulled me in with its epic love story. It kept me interested in fabulous secondary characters and the talented actors who portrayed them. But the essence of the show, the Scottish Highlands, is now gone. I didn’t realize how much I’d come to love it until it was taken away.
So why are these opinions lonely? Because many of them are most likely unpopular.
Apparently, I’m not the only fan that had difficulty discussing last week’s Outlander episode, “Creme de Menthe.” Shaun, the Scottish guy who vlogs about the series was so uninspired he didn’t even do an entry for the episode. Thankfully, this week’s episode was near perfect. And yet, here it is, Saturday, and once again I am scurrying to get my thoughts posted.
Here’s what I learned.
First Wife, Episode 308
1. Now I get it.
I never cared for Young Ian in Voyager. Not anymore. This isn’t a new concept. Several fans who didn’t care for Lord John Grey in the books finally saw his appeal when David Berry brought him to life.
When I first saw pictures of John Bell as Young Ian, I was unimpressed. But an actor is so much more than a face, and John Bell is perfection in the role. I was just beginning to adore this character when his life changes dramatically and his future becomes uncertain.
2. Poster child person for passive-aggressive personality?
Sorry I’m late. I had a very lengthy post written about all the action that took place in “Crème de Menthe,” (had a hard time limiting it to just seven!) but you find can synopses of the episode many other places. I’m just here to express my not-always-popular opinions. So here goes:
Crème de Menthe, Episode 307
1. What’s to dislike?
According to Megan from Loinlander, there were a lot of complaints from book fans that the episode didn’t exactly follow the events portrayed in Voyager. That’s a good thing. I actually skipped over the chapters immediately following Claire and Jamie’s reunion, because it felt like a French farce. So many things happening at once, so much misunderstanding, so many interruptions. So no complaint here. Except maybe for Jamie. (See #6 below.)
The long-awaited, highly anticipated “print shop scene” episode has arrived! You knew there would be disappointment in the crowd. After all, everyone has a favorite moment they want to see brought to life, and you can’t possibly recreate everyone’s moment, let alone portray it exactly as they had in mind. Fortunately for me, I didn’t have any particular notions or desires, so I wasn’t terribly disappointed. I, too, had read Voyager with great anticipation for Jamie and Claire’s reunion, and was thrilled to experience it, but… eh, we’ll get to that later. So let’s discuss
A. Malcolm, Episode 306
1. It’s a special episode
Just in case you didn’t realize it was a “special episode,: we got an extra 15 minutes as a reward for waiting two weeks. Then we got a cold open (the first ever of the series) that depicts a day, or at least a morning, in the life of Jamie Fraser Alexander Malcolm, Printer & Bookseller. And its title card boasts a special conceit with the writer and director coming hot off the presses.