***Spoiler Warning: Discussion of Outlander through Season 2, Episode 11 follows, including references to book storylines follow. Spoilers***
Last Saturday’s Outlander focused on the titular Battle of “Prestonpans,” and though it was a much better episode than I’d been expecting, I can’t say I watch this series for its war scenes. Still, the tenth hour this season surprised me with emotional moments; the camaraderie between newly-bonded soldiers, Dougal’s bravery and subsequent ire and downfall, Jamie’s save-the-day suggestion, and Claire’s excellent-if-limited triage hospital. Even with poor Angus’ surprise death, for me it felt like a standalone sort of episode to showcase all the series’ fine actors staged against a battle backdrop, but it’s the characters’ interpersonal relationships that truly draws me in. Still, I much preferred episode 10 to its predecessor (“Je Suis Prest“); the pacing was great, the tension real and the focus on Dougal’s and Angus’ complexities — the opportunity to see McTavish and Walters explore their characters’ depth before our eyes — was grand.
This coming weekend’s “Vengeance Is Mine” immediately draws our brains back to thoughts of a certain vanished character; you know, that guy who has an uncanny tendency to seem like he might have died, only to pop back up when he’s nearly been forgotten.
Of course none of us, including Jamie and Claire, could ever truly forget Jack Randall, nor should anyone think he’s other than alive, unless we’re in the room when medical person declare him dead (and even then, I’d want a second opinion). And what with Outlander‘s time travel aspect, I’ll always be keeping an eye out for Black Jack’s return. So, my first thought upon reading episode 11’s title and a synopsis referring to Claire being taken by British officers…
Jamie is included in the group of riders enlisted for Dougal. Claire also joins them. When consequences forced Jamie to give up Claire to British Officers as a Scottish prisoner, Claire is sent to visit an English Aristocrat for investigation on one of her Scottish captors, Red Jamie. Surprising revelations are made. Meanwhile, Jamie is desperate to get his wife back.”
is to be terrified she’ll run into Jack again. That may well happen (though Tobias Menzies isn’t currently listed in the episode credits), but even more likely — or at least, first — Claire is probably about to meet with that weaselly Duke of Sandringham (played by the delightful Simon Callow) again. The bigger question is whether the show will follow the book Duke’s history (which you can *Spoil* yourself on here), and judging from Starz’ preview, it seems to be headed in that general direction.
Even though we don’t see the Duke, hints such as Claire telling Jamie they’ll find each other, and the English Aristocrat referred to in the episode description add up to our heroine being brought to the Duke of Sandringham’s home. The next question is: Then what? Is Randall on the mend, or already recovered at Bellhurst Manor? Will the Duke allow Black Jack access to Claire?
***Possible Major Spoilers Ahead***
Googling the last two Season 2 episode titles, there is a partial description for “The Hail Mary” (E12) that gives further information (following the link to Starz doesn’t pan out, though), which may or may not be correct:
So, is Jamie able to rescue Claire from the Duke, does Claire choose to stay to tend to Alex or does she remain in the Duke’s custody, and does it follow that where Alex Randall is, so shall Black Jack Randall be (or eventually show up)? That’s my prediction — that BJR will pull another Surprise, I’m alive (again)! moment near the end of the hour.
***Mild Season 3 Spoilers***
A final tasty Season 3 tidbit comes via Caitriona Balfe herself; the actress called in and spoke to Outlander, LIVE!, dropping this clue about what she’s looking forward to when the series hits future events from Diana Gabaldon’s Voyager:
You know I think Season 3, for people who do know the books…I think it’s a very rich landscape. I mean, the storylines get really, really interesting in that book, and you know, there’s…part of it will be with Frank — which is — I find that storyline very complex and very interesting to play, but I’m really excited to get back to the reunion with Jamie and what they new discovery of a relationship is going to be, because obviously, having spent many years apart from each other, they’re going to have to get to know each other again, relearn how to love each other and accept each other for the people they now are because they will be very different people. So, that’s really exciting. It’s going to be that whole falling in love all over again.”
Je Suis Prest — I AM READY.