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S01.E09: The Reckoning


Athena
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The one thing I didn't like in this episode was having Jamie appear in the least tempted when Laoghaire tried to seduce him. That did not ring true as it's counter to all the times he seemed to swat her away like a buzzing gnat in the past (except that time when they were canoodling).

 

I'm not as bothered by Laoghaire's actions in the same scene because she has been trying everything -- throwing herself at Jamie *with* all her clothes on, trying to chat him up on a regular basis, flattering him by letting him know how long she's wanted him, trying to get a love potion from Claire (for heaven's sake) only to find that Jamies's married the very woman she asked to help her. It makes me wonder whether she thought Claire gave her a potion to do the exact opposite, i.e., repulsing Jamie, because Claire wanted Jamie for herself. So, I can see Laoghaire getting desperate and trying to up her game. To her mind, Jamie is either married to Claire only because he's trying to help her out -- just as he tried to help Laoghaire out earlier by taking her punishment -- or he's enchanted in some way by a witch who used her powers to turn Jamie away from Laoghaire.

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Ooooh, do you mean that clenched jaw, barely moving his lips face from the first fight when he tells Claire "You ARE my wife, whether you like it or not."  Because that moment just gave me chills.  #SexyAnger

It's the close up of Sam's face (not speaking) where his eyebrows are linear almost at 45 degrees on each side of his face and gives his face a long linear look.as he's looking into the camera. Diana has described the look more than once in the book series for more than one Fraser, but it is unmistakable now that it's been filmed.

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Eh, not a fan of the spanking scene, keeping in Jamie's comments re: enjoying it, and the "lighthearted jig" music. So what if Claire got a couple of kicks in herself /- ultimately she can't overpower/outrun Jamie, which is why it's gross that he's hitting her. Also, it's not like Jamie'srevelation that "hey, maybe my confident, mature, intelligent, free-thinking wife may not appreciate my disciplining her as a child" could not have come prior to hitting her. And, I think two threatened rapes within as many days is ample "punishment" for Claire, and she's "learned her lesson." That Jamie would want to heap more abuse and trauma on her than she's already been through (I think Jamie believes the deserter raped her) is not in keeping with his character as heretofore portrayed.

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(edited)

Did anyone notice how "bothered" Dougal seemed down in the common room of the tavern, listening to Claire and Jamie brawl upstairs? He wasn't hooting it up, like the other men. As much as it might be against his interests, Dougal still has moments when he wishes he were in Jamie's boots.

 

*****

 

I wanted to add something re Colum being so angry with Dougal and Jamie. I was reading another message board and someone said a very smart thing that didn't occur to me:
 

 

They've already given us Colum as a fiercely, perhaps excessively, proud man (think of his threats to the tailor in the 3rd episode), and so his reaction to having his authority as laird usurped by men sworn to him makes complete sense to me, especially as it touches upon his already fraught relationship with his brother. Support of the Jacobite cause, or of Jaime's marriage, are, as he sees it, entirely within his gift. Dougal has effectively taken these choices out of his hands, and he's pissed, regardless of how he might feel personally about either subject.

 

 

And I said: That's so true re Jamie's marriage and it harks back to what Ellen, his mother did, by defying her brothers and running off to marry Brian Fraser against their wishes.

Edited by Nidratime
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For me, If we weren't having this breadth of responses, then it wouldn't have been a good show.   We are really invested, and that's a good thing. 
A show that fulfills every expectation, incites no visceral emotions, prompts no reflection - is a waste of time.  I enjoyed it; even the parts that I didn't particularly like. We, readers and viewers alike, have a much broader world view than any of the characters in this story.  But, Jamie's world view reflects the only one that matters in this case, the microcosm that is this story's setting, as it has been presented to us.  Jamie recognized that the only way to remove the shame that had accrued to Claire in the eyes of the clansmen was to punish her in a way the clansmen would recognize as justice. Did you see her face when she realized she was invisible to them?  That look was pure hurt from the heart.  So, this event had to be portrayed, and it succeeded better than I could have imagined. It restored Claire's place in the society she finds herself in, at this moment.  What life could she continue to have if the clan came to view her as a danger to their way of life? Shunning would be the least of it.  The physical struggle between Claire and Jamie was a dramatic depiction of the internal fury of their respective emotions (and ours). If Claire had just meekly bent over, it would have destroyed her spirit.  If Jamie had whipped the woman he loves in that pitiful state, it would have destroyed his self respect.  This was a crisis that could have destroyed them both.  Instead it helped their relationship move forward.  Heretofore, their sexual pleasure with one another served as a respite from the harsh realities of their individual situations.  The repercussions of this event helped Jamie realize that his love for Claire is not enough, and he begins to understand how to love her as she needs to be loved.  And in turn, Claire realizes that what she feels for Jamie is more than lust, and she begins to acknowledge her love for him.

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Jamie has in many other ways been portrayed as extremely kind, gallant, and moral. He's willing to stand up to Dougal and Colum when he wants to (see, taking L's beating, the oath). That Jamie could have very easily defended his wife, told them she was nearly raped and filleted by BJR, which h believes is adequate punishment for his wife, so knock it off with the junior high mean girl stuff. Or, you know, words to that effect.

Unless Jamie is as dumb as a box of hair (which, maybe?), it shouldn't take actually beating Claire to realize that its a terrible idea, and not the kind of marriage he wants -- let alone what she, his intelligent, confident, free-thinking wife, wants.

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The scene of Jamie and Murtagh peeing on the wall at first glance felt like a throwaway only for Murtagh to provide Jamie with the insight to solve the Dougal-Colum problem, but if you really listen to what they're saying about maybe taking their chances out on the road with no home or safe haven, it really drives home how precarious Jamie's situation is and how badly they need the protection of the clan.  They need to be accepted by these people for their continued safety and really aren't in a position to just tell them to go fuck off.

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(edited)

From reading the book, I thought Jamie was doing everything he could to make sure everyone knew he wasn't placing himself in the line of succession, such as modifying the Oath at the ceremony. But Colin seemed pissed that he'd married a Sassenach and therefore would not be accepted as heir. I didn't understand that.

I thought the spanking scene was handled well, but it suffered for not having the conversation afterward about his ass cashing checks that his mouth had written when he was a child, and the insight into his troubles with Randall. It really contextualizes how he saw that duty. It's just what happens when you adapt a book, especially one as detailed as this one - you lose some of the grace notes.

Edited by Archery
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(edited)

So I couldn’t help wondering what Claire was up to while Jaime was navigating the political snakepit between Colum and Dougal.  In my mind, TV Claire spent her days trading shots with Leticia, spilling the details of her wedding and wedding night, while Leticia is giving her the 411 on what it is REALLY like to be the Lady of the Laird. 

 

Enjoyed the way they handled the spanking scene and this is coming from someone who got spanked a lot as a kid (willful child) but have never been beaten so I can appreciate the difference.  There was a lot going on emotionally between the two characters during the scene.  It really was a battle of wills between them.  There was frustration, pragmatism, outrage and humor and the two actors adroitly handled the cavalcade of emotions.  I laughed out loud when Claire, with absolute sincerity, promised to obey Jamie from now on – so of course, the first thing he tells her to do, which is to bend over and let’s get this over with, her response is HELL NO!  Her resolve to obey lasted about, oh maybe 3 seconds.  Jaime’s “enjoying it” line came across to me that he was enjoying the way she was fighting back.  He totally expected her to quietly acquiesce, seeing the necessity of it all and then they could just get it over with. Ultimately, it led to character growth on both their parts and that’s always interesting for me, as a viewer, to watch.

 

Loved the political stuff, especially seeing Colum’s point of view, which makes so much sense, and I did not see it coming.  I understand why the Leery stuff was there, but please, showrunners, don’t make me have to watch anything like that again.

 

Makeup sex = smoking hot.  Loved everything about it.

 

Overall, I really loved the episode a lot.

Edited by chocolatetruffle
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(edited)

 

From reading the book, I thought Jamie was doing everything he could to make sure everyone knew he wasn't placing himself in the line of succession, such as modifying the Oath at the ceremony. But Colin seemed pissed that he'd married a Sassenach and therefore would not be accepted as heir. I didn't understand that.

I wonder if Colum, who really does put the needs of the Clan first and foremost, thought of Jamie as the "spare" in the old saying that a king needs "an heir and a spare."  I think it's clear that Colum has reservations about Dougal's ability to lead and Hamish is too young, should Colum drop dead tomorrow.  I wonder if Colum comforted himself that at least the Clan would have two men to choose from as potential leaders in the even of his death.  Now Dougal pretty much has the position of heir locked up (at least until Hamish comes of age) and that will only tend to encourage him to follow his own judgement when it conflicts with Colum's (which, as we have seen, has already started.)

 

I have a question for anyone who attended the premier in NYC.  In the Wall Street Journal interview that I just posted in the media thread, Sam and Cait said they heard about a cheer from the audience during the spanking scene, but they weren't sure exactly when it happened.  Was anyone there who can tell us?  My own theory is that it came when Claire kicked Jamie in the face because I whooped like Mrs Fitz when she did that (all alone in my apartment).  Sam, Cait and the interviewer were all puzzling over whether the audience was cheering for the spanking, which seems unlikely to me, unless they were cheering the fact that such a difficult scene was carried off so successfully (in which case I agree and hooray!)

Edited by WatchrTina
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I thought the spanking scene was handled well, but it suffered for not having the conversation afterward about his ass cashing checks that his mouth had written when he was a child, and the insight into his troubles with Randall. It really contextualizes how he saw that duty. It's just what happens when you adapt a book, especially one as detailed as this one - you lose some of the grace notes.

 

Agreed. But surely they could have ditched one of the CGI!Snow scenes for a bit of character development and nuance. Then again, considering future storylines, at some point they were going to have to spend a bit of time explaining the Jacobite stuff.

 

Then again, I felt like the book made it pretty clear that Jamie wasn't necessarily sold on the efficacy of beating (yes beating, spanking is too nice a term for a belt and a bare ass) adults and more did it to save her reputation with the others. He may be progressively minded, but not everyone in the clan is, and they were furious at her.

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I don't recall ever have a negative reaction to what Sam was doing with his face but I'll confess, that may not have been where my eyes were (dear god that man's arms and chest are spectacular!)  What, specifically were you reacting to?

I just feel as if Jamie's "O" face rings false.

It was the same face he made during his BJ and it feels phony to me.

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I just feel as if Jamie's "O" face rings false.

It was the same face he made during his BJ and it feels phony to me.

I am so distracted by this too. Sam and Cait's chemistry is off the charts, and their dedication to the physicality of the love scenes is commendable, but then Sam starts making these ridiculous over the top faces that even Meg Ryan side eyes while she's eating her sandwich. 

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(edited)

 

I just feel as if Jamie's "O" face rings false.

 

Ah. Gotcha. As I said, I didn't notice because my eyes where elsewhere at that moment. :)

 

So, I just watched it again -- this time with closed captions off and headphones on to really immerse myself and I took a few notes of some minor things (since all the major things have pretty much been brought up already.) 

 

First of all, did anyone else look at the warnings that preceded the show and laugh?  There were seven!

Adult Content AC

Adult Language AL

Brief Nudity BN

Mild Violence MV

Nudity N

Strong Sexual Content SC 

Violence V

Really?  We need to be warned of "Brief Nudity" when we've already been warned of "Nudity"?  And warned of "Mild Violence" when we've already been warned of "Violence"?  There must be some convoluted rules behind those ratings.

 

Can I just sing the praises of the Irish accent and the way Horrocks says "Eluding Redcoat patrols."  After hearing naught but Scottish and English accents for 8 episodes it was a balm to the ear to hear a lyric Irish voice.

 

The last shot before the opening credits -- the one of the four rescuers racing to Fort Williams as the sun sets -- was just spectacular.  Thank you to the film crew for waiting for just that moment to capture those beautiful colors.

 

Oh did I mention that I was watching on my computer on STARZPlay?  Guess what I learned?  The night scenes of the rescue are MUCH easier to see on my iMac screen than on my flat screen TV.  This isn't the first time I've noticed this phenomenon -- the last two Harry Potter movies were a revelation on my iMac.

 

Matt Roberts tweeted yesterday that Sam did his own stunts, including rappelling down the castle wall to the window.  Now I want to know where that happened, on location or on set?  Had to be on set right?  And he and Claire's jump from the wall -- I presume that water below was CGI.  I hope we'll hear those kinds of details in Ron's podcast.

 

In the scene with Black Jack why does he shoot Jamie (or try to?)  I can't remember why he does it in the book and it doesn't matter anyway -- it only matters what is shown in  the episode.  Given BlackJack's fascination with Jamie it seems unlikely that he would just try to kill him like that.  Do you suppose he aimed for his shoulder to wound and incapacitate him?

 

Did anyone notice the shot as the rescue group arrives at the spot where they water the horses?  The camera skims low across the water and then comes to shore.  They must have had a camera crane -- that would also explain how they got the last shot of Jamie holding Claire because the camera rises up high above them.  It can't have been easy getting a crane in that location but I'm glad they did it.  Those were great shots.

 

Any Game of Thrones fans here?  Because now I'm gonna speak sacrilege.  When Sam is delivering the "You're tearing my guts out" speech he bears more than a passing resemblance to Alfie Allen a.k.a.Theon Greyjoy.  They could be brothers.  This is not a good thing.

 

I predict Mrs. Fitz shouting "Hurray!" is going to turn up on the internet as a gif file.  

 

The first time I watched this episode I didn't understand the tension in the scene where Colum and his wife greet the newlyweds.  It wasn't until later I realized that although Colum congratulates Claire he pointedly offers no congratulations to Jamie, who is clearly expecting them.  I didn't get it the first time but I'll bet every clan member in the room understood the affront intended by Colum.

 

We've made fun of the lack of hair continuity in this episode (and really it is quite confusing) but I have to give props to the make-up continuity in that when Jamie is summoned by the MacKenzie to be chastised he is clearly still sporting a bruise on his face from where Claire kicked him.  Similarly in the sex scene at the very end, the gun shot scar on his right shoulder (from episode 1) is clearly visible, as are the scratch marks on the side of his neck from the fight with Claire.

 

I get the feeling that the scene between Colum and Jamie was longer and a line was cut.  When Jamie says "I meant no betrayal" it felt weird to me that he would use that word.  I feel certain there was a line cut in which Colum names the marriage as a betrayal.

 

Someone on the boards complained about the CGI snow in the stag-hunting and Willie-beating scene.  Was that CGI?  Jamie's hair is wet and I thought I saw a few flakes stick to some of the wool caps.  This is another thing I hope Ron addresses in the podcast.

 

When Jamie rides up to the Willie-beating scene he says the exact same Gaelic phrase that he shouted out in episode 2 when Laoghaire was about to be beaten.  It must mean "Stop what your'e doing!" or something like that.  Look, I'm learning Gaelic!

 

Attention, this is important.  I spotted Waldo!  Yes, my favorite extra -- the young, clean-shaven, "elvish" highlander with the long flowing locks -- was sitting by the fire when Jamie rides up to the stag hunting party.  He stands up when Rupert says "This is Mackenzie business. You Frasers should mind to your own."  Waldo is a horse specialist, ye ken?  Look for him in scenes where horses are involved.  Then drink!

 

When Jamie is giving Colum advice he says "Chastising the guilty might sooth your anger but I doubt it will accomplish anything more.  The bad blood will only fester, leading to more violence."  Nice work writers, because that applies to both the Colum-Dougal dispute AND Jamie's rift with Claire.  Aren't you all the clever ones?

 

Can I just be shallow and note that Jamie was looking particularly fetching by the river?

 

Another thing I noticed watching the episode on a big, high-definition iMac screen -- those were bonafide goosebumps on Laoghaire's breasts.  Scotland is COLD.

 

Thus endeth my stream of consciousness ode to the minor joys of this episode.  If anyone is still reading, I hope you enjoyed it.  Is it next Saturday yet?

Edited by WatchrTina
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I thought Horrocks had an American accent at first! Irish accents just sound like a slightly more lyrical American accent to me. I guess it's that rhotic accent.

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From reading the book, I thought Jamie was doing everything he could to make sure everyone knew he wasn't placing himself in the line of succession, such as modifying the Oath at the ceremony. But Colin seemed pissed that he'd married a Sassenach and therefore would not be accepted as heir. I didn't understand that.

 

 

I think it's complicated . Colum is not going to be very old and his son is only about 8 . Too young to lead the clan so the role would fall to Dougal in case  Colum dies sooner rather than later . While nobody questions Colum's leadership, Dougal's position is not that secure ( he didn't become chief even though he's the able bodied of those two ) and some might prefer Jamie over Dougal . That however would ultimately threaten Hamish's role (Jamie's young and could have children of his own ). So they want Jamie out of the way if he's a danger to Hamish's leadership and to keep him close because Jamie's land is at a strategically great place  . Colum however doesn't support Dougal's Jacobite ambitions and having Jamie as an option to boot out Dougal seams to appeal to him . Jamie just tries to stay out of all of this without pissing anyone off so he can stay safely at Leoch 

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Matt Roberts tweeted yesterday that Sam did his own stunts, including rappelling down the castle wall to the window.  Now I want to know where that happened, on location or on set?  Had to be on set right?  And he and Claire's jump from the wall -- I presume that water below was CGI.  I hope we'll hear those kinds of details in Ron's podcast.

Can't find the tweet right at the moment, but one of the insiders posted that they used a different castle in Scotland to stand in for Fort William, and filmed the outdoor scenes, including the repelling and the entrance and explosion at night on location. And Sam responded to Matt Roberts' tweet that he did ALL of his own stunts (Sam's capitalization, btw). Since we see Jamie and Claire go underwater, I'm guessing they may have used CGI the water before the jump from the fort, but depending on which castle, it might have been an on location shot with water below.

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(edited)

Blackness Castle on the south bank of the Firth of Forth.  I saw the tweet last night and Ron had also mentioned it in his podcast for "The Garrison Commander."  It is indeed right on the water.

Edited by Glaze Crazy
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Sam responded to Matt Roberts' tweet that he did ALL of his own stunts (Sam's capitalization, btw).

I could be mistaken but I think Sam was live tweeting during the episode when he sent that one out and I think it was during the spanking scene.  I assumed he was making a joke about doing the fight scene with Cait.  But you are right he has said on many occasions that he does his own stunts.  However certain scenes (long shots of groups on horseback and such) are done by the 2nd unit with stand-ins and stunt doubles and I'm guessing that the plunge in the water was shot by that unit.  I remember seeing a photo of Sam's stunt double (he does have one) on a dock and I wonder if that's where the plunge into the water was shot.

 

But if Sam actually rappelled down the outside of a real Scottish castle at night, in a kilt, well damn.  He really is an action hero.

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Re: the CGI snow, I thought the snow looked real in some shots and fake in others. I'd assume the CGI was used to even out continuity issues from the actual weather.

I really liked the stronger bond between Colum and Jamie, it tracks with the second book where they meet to get Jamie's recommendation.

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I really liked that we got Jamie's POV in this episode, it felt needed at some point to get to know Jamie better. Not even necessarily through his voiceovers, but just seeing him when he's not with Claire.

 

I have to say I'm usually not very impressed with Sam's acting, but that fight scene after the rescue was so good. Also, the look on his face when he makes his oath to Claire and she doesn't respond, I really felt for Jamie then. So well done.

 

The spanking scene didn't bother me much in the book, but I thought it was better handled on the show.

 

I wish this was on Netflix and we could watch all the remaining episodes right now. 

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I wish this was on Netflix and we could watch all the remaining episodes right now. 

Good gravy- it's spring.

I would never get outdoors.

 

It's bad enough that I've used the previous eight episodes as almost constantly running background noise for several months now.

If there was an award to be given for most played episodes my DVR and it's "Play All" feature would surely win.

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I would never get outdoors.

Amen.

 

I barely left the house this weekend.  I when I look back now the very very long posts I've left here I think, "Whoa, you have to get out more."  

 

I have a family wedding on an upcoming Saturday and will NOT be able to watch the new episode live and comment and tweet and obsess that weekend. It's a good thing.  

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The spanking didn't really both me that much in the book, but it sure did in the show -- especially the zany caper music they played in the background for the whole thing.  I thought this episode really suffered from the perspective switching to Jamie.  I didn't feel like I gained any new insight into the spanking scene, and found the whole thing much harder to stomach when we're not part of Claire's coming to terms with the situation.  I don't need to hear someone whose in a position of power rationalizing the situation.   I need to understand how the victim is dealing with it.  I also felt that cutting the entire conversation they have on the way back to Leoch makes her forgiveness that much more confusing.   

 

I am glad that they changed the sex scene at the end.  While I could rationalize the spanking the book, I could not get behind that.  The last thing we needed in this episode was Claire asking him to stop, and him refusing.

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*waves to everyone* Hello, I'm new here! Nice to find other Outlander fans to discuss this with.

 

I really enjoyed this episode, and since I've been dreading it during the entire hiatus I was actually shocked to have liked it. I've read all the books, and if I have one complaint about Diana's writing it's that violence is way, way, WAY too often linked with sexuality both in positive and negative contexts. This is, however, way more frequent in Outlander than in the other books, so I for one will be grateful when we get past this first book and into some of the others (it's still an issue, just...less of an issue). That being said, I didn't mind the way they handled the spanking scene in the episode, if only because I think I understand the dilemma they were facing. If they'd done the scene as it is in the book - with the added  problem of the non-consensual sex which follows - then I don't think any modern viewer would really be able to forgive Jamie. As it is, making the tone lighter did take some of the fear and threat out of it, and I think it made it possible for the viewer to choose to see it as two very strong-willed people who don't mind engaging with each other physically. I still don't love it, but I can see why they made that choice. 

 

Honestly, the whole spanking-forcing sequence in the book nearly made me give up reading them altogether, and it was only after reading much much more of the story that I managed to mentally get past it. I'm still angry with Diana for that decision and a few others, because as much as Jamie is wilfull, strong-minded and does have a temper, that just felt really over the line. I may enjoy the stories, but that doesn't mean I have to like or defend every aspect of them! And I'm so SO glad they didn't include the non-con sex scene in the show, because I honestly think it would've been the death of the show. 

 

One facet of Claire's personality is that she's oddly practical (in the books) and this means that sometimes she comes to conclusions that I think make logical sense but don't always resonate with the reader emotionally - for instance, in this situation she is initially angry, but she's also able to accept that Jamie's ethical foundation is different than her own and apply this here and also to other scenarios where a less practical person would be angry/hurt/frustrated and unable to move past it. It's a helpful feature for a character who is constantly being forced into seriously unpleasant historical situations, but I do think sometimes as a reader you want her to react in a less logical/practical way and just let loose with some good old modern proactive feminism.

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For those wondering about timing, it showed up on our Starz On Demand (Comcast in Maryland) at 9am!  I turned on the TV to catch a little Saturday morning Law&Order and lo and behold, there was my baby!

 

I really loved the episode and think they wound their way through a minefield of plot points, emotional whiplash moments, huge swathes of intense dialog, and character-growing situations with quite a bit of facility, if not perfection.  I don't think that perfection would be possible given the book sets forth some of the problematic things and they really have to hit some of these to lay foundations.

 

I thought the spanking scene was handled about as well as it could have been, except for the total miss of the background music.  I am guessing they were going for a bit of a traditional donnybrook feeling since she was fighting back pretty strongly, yay for kicking him right in the nose.  It was a huge fail, though, because the whole scene was so delicate that the jaunty tune just tossed me right out.  I also think that they showed Jamie didn't want to do it for himself but realized that if he didn't punish her in some way she would be ostracized forever, if not allowed to be killed/taken.  At the same time, Jamie has been spanked and subjected to physical punishment his whole life, and so has everyone he knows (they established this really strongly with Laoghaire facing physical punishment in front of the whole castle and guests).  It is just an expected thing, so he doesn't really want to do it but he can't really understand why Claire is making such a ruckus.  It speaks volumes of his character that he is able to see her point, consider it in terms of his own life, and then really take it to heart.  It is one of my greatest joys of this series that Claire is allowed to, by the writer, and able to, by Jamie's flexibility of thought, shape Jamie's worldview so strongly.  It isn't often that we see not just a strong woman on TV, but one who effects changes around her, not just in plot or circumstances, but in adults.

 

Wow, didn't realize I had so so much to say!  So, briefly...  Loved that the men took her straight back into the group once she had faced her "righteous" punishment for putting them all in danger.  Loved the awkward welcome moments at the castle.  I like the political overtones and the Jacobite maneuvering so I liked that Jamie was shown acting as an effective leader with Colum, Dougal, and Ned Gowan; I thought it really moved him away from the "stable-working nevvy running away from the law" persona.  I thought Claire freezing out Jamie, then the vow, the resulting sex, and then her mastering the moment and Jamie to give him her own filip on the vow was well done, although I thought the sex went on a bit too long and the O-faces are unnecessary.  Sam and Cait have roaring chemistry, a little subtlety and reticence in scenes wouldn't go amiss; you don't have to convince us, really.  The Laoghaire scene by the river wasn't my favorite, but it established a foundation for the future events, Jamie unknowingly encouraged her because he was "nice" and she feels as if he has been stolen from her by magic since Claire did give her the click three times love charm incantation.  Stunts and scenery were spectacular, per usual.  Big props for Tobias for how he shows Black Jack being a sort-of rousing villain, who takes joy in villainy, but then sometimes the eye-shutters are removed and we see into his truly festering soul.  Ugh, playing that must be debilitating sometimes.

 

So, this is the longest post ever to say: in my opinion, well done, show.

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Bookworm, I really enjoyed reading your post.  I didn't notice the music in the spanking scene until second viewing, but I can see why it's a controversial choice.  However, that scene reminded me of one of my favorite movies,The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara and directed by John Ford. It's hard to explain, but the film explores similar issues told with a lighter hand, yet does not compromise the emotional integrity of the characters.  Anyway, if you can find it on Netflix it's worth a viewing - it's a classic.

 

Overall, I loved the music of this episode, especially the reworking of the wedding theme to make it more expansive with strings.  It really reflected the deeper relationship that Jamie and Claire were experiencing.  I especially liked the way it came to a "crescendo" at exactly the same moment that Jamie and Claire physically did, if you know what I mean...

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I thought the music in the scene was fitting because it was told from Jamie's POV.  It's how he was experiencing it at the time.  He thought he was delivering simple justice and Claire's reaction was totally outrageous (to him).  In the end, it was so much more horrifying to Claire because Jaime didn't get that this was a terrible thing he was doing.  Jaunty music with a Claire POV would have been terrible, I agree.  It was uncomfortable to chuckle during the spanking scene, but I appreciate that even the music kept us inside Jamie's head.  I think the turn around from him thinking this was completely ok and even something to joke about to where he understood that things won't work this way with Claire and he offered much more than an empty promise made the entire episode and their relationship development even stronger.  

 

On second viewing, I think the music choice was the right one for what was being conveyed.  It's all a joke to Jaime until he realizes that he's wrong, even if he doesn't quite understand why.  

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Sorry if this had been discussed but....as I was watching the episode I just feel like Jamie is not what I envisioned in the books. Don't get me wrong as I think the actor is doing a great job.  It is just "looks".  I feel like he wouldn't stick out in a crowd as Claire always says he does in the books.  On the show Jamie isn't much taller then Claire is.  But with that being said, I love this show!!!  This episode was great.  I don't see why some people are getting so upset with the spanking.  It is not a modern day story.  It is set back in the 1700's.  That is what they did back then.  

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I can't really add to what has been said. I really enjoyed the episode. I HATED the Laoghaire stuff on initial watch and have softened up on it as I let it sink in. As long as he doesn't know of her involvement with the witch stuff so it doesn't mess up future storylines, I'm ok with it.

 

Upon *mumblety* re-watches, I do have to say that I love that Sam is having Jamie tap his fingers when thinking. I noticed him doing it on the mantle before he approaches Claire with the oath. (Also in previous episodes as well.)

 

I also liked Claire's heaving sigh of relief when Jamie burst through the window.

 

I don't remember if it was here or elsewhere that I saw comments that people thought the make-up sex was too long. I found it rather short. :P  In the book, I pictured it to be quite a marathon session. If anything, I only get annoyed at how vocal Claire is because I have to practically watch the scenes on mute if my kids are in the other room so they don't come running! :)

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I listened to the podcast today. Some interesting tidbits (from the all-male podcast panel, including RDM):

 

--They use the word spanking. They emphasize that it is a choice to use that word.

--They seemed to feel Jamie was justified, 'because justice'. 

--The music was an intentional choice, 'so you know it's going to be okay'. (Not sure what this means, I don't think any of us thought Jamie would seriously injure her.)

--The women in the writer's room wanted the scene to play darker but were overruled.

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I need to listen to that. I heard that Ron Moore wanted to have Jamie actually make out with Laoghaire. Was that mentioned? I think the internet would've exploded if he went that far. I was already annoyed with the lingering boob feel and the almost kiss.

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I need to listen to that. I heard that Ron Moore wanted to have Jamie actually make out with Laoghaire. Was that mentioned? I think the internet would've exploded if he went that far. I was already annoyed with the lingering boob feel and the almost kiss.

 

Hmm, IIRC (and if not someone please tell me), they described that issue as a point of contention, BUT said that it was the actors themselves who went in for a kiss in one take. RDM (I think, I actually had a hard time distinguishing his voice on this cast) did mention that they wanted to go as far as possible with it so it was more impactful when Jamie did the right thing. I don't recall anyone saying they WANTED to show a kiss. But apparently a kiss was filmed, only because the actors followed through during one take. 

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(edited)

[T]hat scene reminded me of one of my favorite movies,The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara and directed by John Ford. It's hard to explain, but the film explores similar issues told with a lighter hand, yet does not compromise the emotional integrity of the characters.  Anyway, if you can find it on Netflix it's worth a viewing - it's a classic.

The Quiet Man was exactly what I thought of chocolatetruffle!  Maybe that's what they were going for, a reference to that famous scene where he drags her across the town, which is played as totally the proper thing to do and the music for that is quite lilty as well.

 

Although it seemed a jarring choice for some of us, I can really see what some are saying: that they were trying to stay completely within Jamie's headspace in this episode so the music fits from that perspective.

 

I guess after watching and discussing and hearing comments and commentary I just commend them on at least deciding on a way to go and then going there with as much integrity as possible.

Edited by bookworm
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I guess after watching and discussing and hearing comments and commentary I just commend them on at least deciding on a way to go and then going there with as much integrity as possible.

This, so much.  

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--The women in the writer's room wanted the scene to play darker but were overruled.

 

Ugh, that just made me lose a bit of respect for those involved.  When writing about an assault on a woman, perhaps listen to the women you  have around you.  If they say what you want to do is a bad idea, they're probably right!

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The Quiet Man was exactly what I thought of chocolatetruffle! Maybe that's what they were going for, a reference to that famous scene where he drags her across the town, which is played as totally the proper thing to do and the music for that is quite lilty as well.

Although it seemed a jarring choice for some of us, I can really see what some are saying: that they were trying to stay completely within Jamie's headspace in this episode so the music fits from that perspective.

I guess after watching and discussing and hearing comments and commentary I just commend them on at least deciding on a way to go and then going there with as much integrity as possible.

That's kind of how they rationalized Jamie's actions.

Except for the part where he liked it, I guess.

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...... cannot help but know that the spanking scene is controversial AND was used as one of the audition scenes.  It's said that it's what got Sam the role.  I'm going to have to say that now I understand.  I think he nailed it.  It's such a fine line he has to walk and I think he did it successfully.  Some people are going to hate that scene no matter what but I think Sam was very successful in portraying a man who thinks that spanking his wife is what is right, fair, just and what is expected -- but who has never done it before and is uncertain in this role.  Jamie, as written, as played by Sam, truly believes that Claire is expecting the spanking.  I think that's key.  He doesn't want to do it but will, out of duty (and to ensure that the clansmen will continue to offer Claire their protection) and then he is just flabbergasted and frustrated that she's making it so difficult.  We, the viewers, understand where Claire is coming from Jamie doesn't.  That clash of cultures is a key aspect of this time-traveling story.  I think they got it perfect in that scene.  

 

 

Yes! Thanks for putting my thoughts into words for me  ;)

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Jamie, as written, as played by Sam, truly believes that Claire is expecting the spanking.  I think that's key.

Yes, this is my thinking, too. In the world that the show presents, with a situation that "deserved" punishment, there really wouldn't be an expectation of needing consent, right? I mean, it's not my favorite scene from the book, but it does shade Jamie's character a bit and gives the reader/viewer a chance to be frustrated by him. The show probably played it too much for laughs, but since this episode was his POV, I was more ok with it. 

 

The scene with Laoghaire, on the other hand, really made me irrationally rage-y. I really can't stand when heroes/heroines are tempted to cheat with characters who seem to exist solely to mess things up for other people. Granted, I do think the fact that he didn't blow her off right away was probably realistic and right for the show. And it seems like the show is trying to flesh out the character a bit so that we don't just see her through Claire's eyes. But I could definitely feel my blood pressure rising during that scene. I think we also missed a bit of Claire's fretting over Laoghaire and the nature of what her marriage with Jamie will be, since we were in Jamie's head and not hers. It seemed like the show could have taken its time a bit more with this part of the story because it's a real turning point in their relationship.

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I don't recall 1/10th the outrage over the scene where that poor child has his ear nailed to the post...and that was in lieu of chopping off his hand! Jamie was flogged near to death and we've seen evidence of crucifixitions on the show. So I really don't get all the pearl clutching over the spanking scene.

As my "Like" button has never worked, let me just say "Applause" and "Thank you."

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I don't recall 1/10th the outrage over the scene where that poor child has his ear nailed to the post...and that was in lieu of chopping off his hand! Jamie was flogged near to death and we've seen evidence of crucifixitions on the show. So I really don't get all the pearl clutching over the spanking scene.

 

This.

Claire was spanked because she's a woman - yes; but if she'd have been a man, it would have been worse.

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I don't recall 1/10th the outrage over the scene where that poor child has his ear nailed to the post...and that was in lieu of chopping off his hand! Jamie was flogged near to death and we've seen evidence of crucifixitions on the show. So I really don't get all the pearl clutching over the spanking scene.

I get what you're saying, but my main issue with the spanking thing is the context. And what I've always taken issue with in the books is Jamie's attitude towards the beating. The show, in my opinion, handled it well. Jamie didn't think it was a big deal, because as someone stated earlier, he assumed that Claire expected it. When he realized how offended and hurt she was by it, he felt genuine remorse and sincerely apologized. There was actual respect between the partners. For me, when reading this section of the book, I felt betrayed by Jamie. When the boy had his ear nailed to the post, he didn't understand why Claire was upset, but he respected her point of view and helped the boy go free.

 

With the spanking, and subsequent scenes with the dubious consent, Jamie stops caring about what Claire thinks. He treats her like a piece of property, which goes against everything we've seen of Jamie before (and everything we see of him after.) Yes, there's the debate of "well that's how it was back then..." but it seemed extremely out of character to me that Jamie would think this way. He takes punishment for other people in the castle, he helps the boy go free, he wears the scars of senseless violence. Yes, it's reasonable for Jamie to screw up from time to time, but what the book ignored was the possibility that Jamie could be wrong. It was always Claire who had to get used to it. I'm grateful that the show reinterpreted these events and Claire's modern effect continued to enlighten Jamie rather than taking them both two steps back.

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I don't recall 1/10th the outrage over the scene where that poor child has his ear nailed to the post...and that was in lieu of chopping off his hand! Jamie was flogged near to death and we've seen evidence of crucifixitions on the show. So I really don't get all the pearl clutching over the spanking scene.

Oops, I accidentally opened the book readers' thread, and since I didn't see a comment like this in the non-readers' thread, I'll respond.

I didn't object to the much more violent scene such as the ear - nailing and Jamie's whipping because of the tone of those shows. We were supposed to despise Randall for whipping Jamie. And we were meant to both adopt Clare's perspective that the ear - nailing was ridiculously harsh and to applaud Claire and Jamie for allowing the boy to escape without tearing his ear.

Though much less physically harsh, the beating of Claire by Jamie is much more offensive to me because we were supposed to suddenly switch our perspective to embrace this form of physical punishment and humiliation.

Whip a man, pin the ear of a young boy, publicly beat a teenage girl accused of loose behavior? All of these were meant to show the dangerous world Claire had entered and from which she would rightly want to escape. But when it comes to beating one's wife, we are suddenly supposed to blindly accept this particular form of physical punishment as "a part of that culture."

I don't condone watching a program with a view that anything in that culture that is different from a 21st century perspective is automatically wrong. But I think it is equally wrong to expect the viewer to view something like wife beating as automatically right simply because "that's how it was in that culture." And this is the first form of physical punishment in this series that expected us to do that.

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(edited)
But I think it is equally wrong to expect the viewer to view something like wife beating as automatically right simply because "that's how it was in that culture." And this is the first form of physical punishment in this series that expected us to do that.

 

 

Do you think we were supposed to think it was right? Ultimately, Jamie was convinced that it wasn't ... at least in his marriage. If we were supposed to think it was okay, then why would we have seen Jamie regretting it, with Claire icing him out, and then "applaud" him at his pledge not to ever do it again? I think we were supposed to feel - if not as angry as Claire -- at least ambivalent over the reasoning behind it, as well as the actual act. The very fact that there seemed no indication that Jamie was even going to do it until he saw how the clansmen acted towards Claire means that it wasn't something he immediately thought or wanted to do.

 

Let's compare it with the punishment of the little boy. If Claire hadn't been there or hadn't said anything, I think Jamie would've left the kid there to get out of it on his own. Under Claire's influence, Jamie made the effort to help the boy. I think the spanking/beating is in the same vein. Her outrage and objections took him aback, but even before that, he didn't look too comfortable with the task. He's used to being among men, among soldiers, on the road and living with their type of morals and consequences for doing right or wrong. No one, but those idiots with him, is there to guide him on how to be a good husband. But you can tell that Claire's influence -- both as a strong woman *and* a 20th century woman -- is helping him to be the man, I think, he instinctively wants to be and is deep down.

Edited by Nidratime
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I never thought the spanking was a big deal until I read about the controversy  on the internet . To be honest I still don't get it .

It's funny, I've been anti-John Wayne movies for years because I remember being offended by some fountain spanking scene when I was a teen, but this one just doesn't seem as offensive. It's more corporal punishment for all than silly women must be kept in their place. I find Outlander's obsession with spanking more groan inducing than anything. Then again, maybe it is my outlook that has changed and I need to give John Wayne another chance.

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