Book Review

Outlander – Useful Occupations and Deceptions [Ep.203]


So many things happened in this episode, I’m not sure where to start!

If you haven’t had a chance to see it, there will be many spoilers in this post …

I’m heartbroken to see our Jamie and Clare grow apart, but I am ecstatic that the show is taking the time to show the depth of pain Jamie is in and what a toll his recovery takes on their relationship.

I’m a little disappointed … no let me correct that. I’m a lot disappointed in some of the fans that are in a rush to see “the old” Jamie, cute and free spirited, passionate about his woman and the same goes for Claire. They think these Jamie and Claire are too wrapped up in themselves and too serious.

People, are we watching the same show?! How many times do I have to tell you to “Put the damn book down!” Let’s concentrate on what we’re seeing!

Let me tell you what I see.

I see two people that are in love with each other so much that neither wants to hurt or burden the other. Claire is sensitive to his plight and she will do anything to help him forget the Wentworth ever happened, but she can’t do that unless he opens up about it, and Jamie figures if he doesn’t talk about it, it might go away. Both are trying to bridge the divide on numerous occasions, with kisses and touches. They are willing to make love, but memories of that horrific night in Wentworth are always intruding, so they both go back to loving and supporting one another through other means, and they once more start leading separate lives.

The secret Claire carries about BJR being alive, is tearing her guts out and Murtagh gets the brunt of it [LOVED the scene where she interrupts him and Suzette!], and finally shares her secret with him. The way they talk about it and the way they give comfort and approval to one another, with touches on the arms, and for him to advise against her telling Jamie was a big thing! The relationship they have developed is one of mutual trust and admiration. He has come to admire her and consider her a friend, so that just warmed me all over!

I’m also loving Claire’s developing friendship with Mary Hawkins and Louise. She finally put two and two together, remembering through flashbacks with Frank, that Mary is Frank’s ancestor, the one that married BJR! What will she do now?! How is this going to affect Frank?!

How can she confide this in Jamie when he still thinks BJR is dead?!

Her friendship with Master Raymond helps her in finding an outlet for her healing skills and she acquires another friend when she visits L’Hôpital des Anges, a charity hospital, Mother Hildegarde. As days and weeks go by, she feels happy to be of service, as Jamie is always on the run, either for Jared’s business or to gather intelligence for their mission.

Their marriage suffers greatly as they keep being two ships passing at dawn, as Jamie is never there to spend the night with her. Both get angry at each other and to see them thus hurts, but it’s something that will either brake or make their marriage.

My heart broke when Jamie said “When do I get to feel good? When do I get to find meaning in my day?”.

And then we meet one of the most loved characters DG had ever created in this series. wee Fergus! Just watching this kid go from table to table at the brothel was awesome! The chase and the interaction between Milord and wee Fergus was priceless!

Every scene with him was pure gold! “Well, it’s actually Claudel, but we agreed that wasna very manly,” Jamie tells Claire as she finds the rascal in the middle of the night in her dining room. This little pickpocket will play a huge role in their lives from now on and to see him come to life in these scenes was pure joy.

Jamie’s a bit put off by having to explain to Claire that he’s hired Fergus for his skills, wanting him to  steal letters addressed to Prince Charles so he can find out more about the English investors, and if they even exist.

As it turns out, they do indeed exist, and after they find an intriguing piece of music written in one of the letters, Murtagh tells Jamie that there might be someone who can help them out decipher the code and then they could read the message.

Can you imagine Claire’s surprise and delight as Jamie comes to see her at the hospital? That was such a poignant scene because it said volumes about their relationship.

He finally accepted her valuable contribution to the hospital, as he saw her work on a patient, and after she assured Mother Hildegard that her husband would never ask her to do anything illegal, she showed Jamie that she still believed in their cause and is willing to do anything she can to help him. After Mother Hildegard deciphers the key to the secret code, Jamie translates it into the letter and they both come to the conclusion that the undersigned “S” can only be Duke of Sandringham!

As Jamie goes to fetch some whiskey in order for them to celebrate this momentous occasion, he tells Claire and Murtagh that they should have a dinner party for the duke and invite Charlie as well, so that the old guy would possibly think twice before he funds the rebellion.

Both, Murtagh and Claire, are now faced with a decision of telling Jamie that BJR is alive. Murtagh urges her to tell him ASAP, but Claire chickens out ….

And that’s it for this episode! How did you like it and what do you think of the “time paradox” that is playing out with Frank’s life?

Melanie for b2b


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