Well, this is it -The last Hurrah, the Final Curtain, the Last of the Mohicans, the end of Outlander, Season 2. It has been fun doing this recap. I never did recaps before because there are so many great racap blogs out there, mine wouldn’t add anything new. Well, I guess I looked at Season 2 in a different way and have had great feedback from our church members and visitors. It was not easy to do Season 2 in 5 installments. Can you imagine the writers trying to get in all the pertinent and beloved information from Dragonfly in Amber in 13 episodes! I have a new respect for what they do. Everyone is lucky I am not one of them. I will recap my recap thoughts at the end of this posting. I better get on with it…..
This episode was called the Hail Mary and it certainly was. There were so many Hail Mary moments, I was short of breath (SOB in medical abbreviation, which always made me giggle as in ‘Patient was SOB’ I knew he wasn’t very nice, but should someone call him that in a medical record?) But I digress. Our episode opens with the exhausted Fraser soldiers, coming into Inverness. They had been retreating for five months, with little food or rest. Lucky those who have a horse. Either you can ride it or eat it…Poor Thistle!
Even though they are exhausted, Jamie orders Dougal to go scout out the British Army location. Murtaugh is asked to pick up the Bonnie Prince and bring him to the War Council aka Cone-uh-Clan (see Installment Quatre) Head Meeting. Fergus immediately goes to sleep and Murtaugh covers him up with what looks like a horse blanket. Claire decides to go into Inverness to replenish her medical supplies. (I don’t know why she didn’t pick them up along the road as they marched. There should be plenty of stuff in the fields, but maybe it is getting too cold to find herbs.) But I digress, again. It appears that every town has an apothecary (kind of like a Walgreen’s on every corner today). When she goes inside, she runs into, Mary Hawkins! (Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine)! Mary is none too happy to see her.
Mary gets her order of arsenic and old lace. Suspecting Alex is worse, Claire asks if she can stop by their lodging to apologize to Alex. Mary agrees (remembering Claire is a healer, I’m sure). Claire returns to camp trying to find necessary supplies. Claire calls for help!
Jamie comes back frustrated after the War Council meeting because BPC is pushing the clans to battle the British at Culloden. Jamie tells BPC to look at the troops with no food, no rest, and the increasing cold. Plus Culloden is a good place for a battle for the British, but not for the Scottish. Of course, BPC and the clans all deny that their men are tired, hungry, demoralized from the retreat, and/or cold.
Claire decides to visit Mary and Alex. Claire discovers a very weak Alex with Mary trying to take care of him. Of course, Claire is the only one who can do that properly, so she starts mixing up her potions. Suddenly, Alex says hello to Johnny and Claire freezes.
Yes, it’s Black Jack Randall and he is not in uniform. Doesn’t matter, he’s still evil. Claire decides to leave and come back later. Black Jack follows her out and accosts her on the street. He asks her to save his brother, not for him, but for the sake of Mary and her unborne child. Yes, poor sickly Alex got it up enough times for her to get pregnant and they are not married! (Mary has taken the Slut train to Yuma! ) Claire tells Randall she will do her best but she can’t guarantee anything. However, she says she won’t help them unless BJR tells her where the British Army is encamped. BJR is shocked that she would trade her integrity for information. Claire says, “I’m not the same woman I once was.”
While Jamie and Claire are away, Rupert looks up and sees Colum getting help out of his carriage. Colum enters with two escorts holding him up. It is evident he is in very poor condition. He wants to see Dougal and Jamie, after he gets off his painful spindly legs. He is told they have stepped out, but they will get them here as soon as possible.
Claire rushes back to tell Jamie that the British are encamped near Nairn and they are planning a birthday party for Cumberland in two nights. (BJR said to keep it a secret, because it is a surprise party.) Jamie decides to verify the information and encourage BPC to mount a surprise attack (Hail Mary #1). She finds out that Colum is here. Jamie and she go in to his room to see him. Colum thinks Dougal is keeping him waiting, but Jamie explains he is scouting the British. Colum tells Jamie that he’s very shrewd. “Ye gave Dougal some important assignment, but kept him out from under your feet.” Then he asks to speak to Claire privately, while they are waiting. He tells her that he is happy that Jamie found her to love. She reminds him that he didn’t always think that way. Colum says, he was wrong. “It’s the prerogative of a dying man.” Then he asks Claire to “slip him a mickey” just like Gellis Duncan did for her husband so he can be done with the pain. They talk about mortal sin, and Claire tells him not to speak badly of Gellis. Colum tells Claire that Gellis’ child (a boy) lived and was given to a childless MacKenzie family. She gives Colum a potion that will take him out gently, whenever he is ready. (Hail Mary #2)
Jamie presents his idea of a surprise attack to the War Council and everyone agrees, despite Murray and Sullivan not wanting Jamie to look good in the Prince’s eyes. However, Sullivan decides he wants BPC as his date for the party, which is not how Jamie planned it. Jamie wanted to be successful, and this might not be the best combo to lead a line to war.
Dougal comes back from his scavenger hunt for the British. He finds out Jamie already knows about the British at Nairn. He makes a comment that it would have been nice if he could have been spared the long ride. Then he looks at a pot of dirty lettuce soup, and says he’s hungry! Jamie tells him Colum is here and he’ll have to wait. Dougal and Jamie along with Claire, go back into the room with Colum. Colum announces he has chosen Hamish to become clan leader and Jamie to be his guardian. Dougal blows up and says Jamie will lead the clan to war just like he would. Jamie thanks Colum for the honor, but agrees with Dougal. Colum points out that if Jamie led the clan, he would never waste their lives. Dougal cannot say he would do the same.
Claire goes back to take care of Alex with Murtaugh as a guard. She finds Alex coughing heavily and she decides to blow smoke up his nose. Black Jack objects, and Claire says she can only alleviate his discomfort, not cure him. Alex begs BJR to marry Mary! He can give her what she needs socially and financially. (Hail Mary #3) BJR panics, but Alex reminds him that he already knows what a bastard BJR can be, but he still believes there is good in him. BJR runs to the pub because he is afraid his baser side will erupt against Mary. Claire follows him and talks him into doing what Alex wants.
Meanwhile, Dougal comes to talk with Colum. Colum is resting and doesn’t want to be disturbed. But Dougal goes on and gives a touching speech to his brother about how he feels about him. There is no response from Colum because he has taken the potion, and Dougal realizes that he has died. In all honesty, this is the first time I liked Dougal in the entire show and actually felt sorry for the bugger.
Next we see Mary and BJR being married by a minister in front of Alex’s sick bed and…wait….wait….witnessd by Murtaugh and Claire! Murtaugh is very upset to see BJR marry Mary (wolf and lamb, ye ken). Mary holds up well. When the minister leaves, Jack speaks to his brother.
Next we watch as Alex dies. Everyone cries (including Black Jack) but then Black Jack starts to beat the crap out of the corpse! I don’t know where Murtaugh is when this happens. (Bad time to take a break when he was supposed to protect Claire at exactly this moment just for this reason). Off screen this is what happened next. (Hail Mary #4)
Jamie kisses Claire goodbye as he heads off to Cumberland’s birthday party. The march another 12 miles to the meeting point. Of course the Bonnie Prince and Sullivan get lost and never show up. Murray has the best line of the night, “Where is that imbecile, Charles?” Jamie tries to talk him into attacking despite this setback, since they came all this way. (Hail Mary #5) but Murray refuses, and Jamie knows history will happen just as Claire said.
This episode bounces between 1746 and 1968. It’s a bit confusing, but I will attempt to make it more so, with my memes. The scene opens in 1968 and some kids are watching The Avengers with Steed and Emma Peel. A man I recognized as Roger Wakefield (because I had read the promos and announcements about the actor) is standing at the back of the room, appearing to watch, too. Then a fawning young woman I presumed to be Fiona because she looked and acted exactly as I pictured her in the book, lays her hand on his arm and says in the softest voice, “Your guests are looking for you, Roger.” You can see him visibly recoil from her attentions while she gazes into his eyes with longing. He turns and next you see him giving a toast at his Father’s funeral. Reverend Wakefield has died. As the camera scans the group, a more mature Claire Fraser is standing at the back of the room.
Then Brianna (Jamie and Claire’s grown daughter) prances around the house, causing Roger’s Hottie Alert Stick to stand at attention and Fiona’s hopes to be dashed against the rocks of mediocrity! Brianna asks him if he’s Roger Wakefield and he says he is. Then Claire walks up and says,” Roger? I suppose you don’t remember me, but I knew you when you were about 7 or 8.” She chats about the old days and asks if she can walk around the house. He’d say anything to get rid of her so he can talk to Brianna, so he says, “Of course!” He asks if she is staying long enough to visit the area. She says she is just here for the day with her Mom. He says he wishes she would be around longer because there is some”beautiful, wild” country to see. He invites them to stay at the house instead of driving back to London. They agree and later he talks with Claire over drinks in front of the fire. He asks her how she has been able to go on after losing the one person you love the most. He’s referring to Frank for her and the Reverend for him. She responds, “They’re gone and we have to continue. It’s what they’d want us to do.” She’s referring to Jamie. That night Brianna and Roger think back on their day.
Now we pop back to 1746, and Jamie is chasing BPC and begging him to move to a different site before the British find them and wipe them out. The Prince aka Jesus Christ (in His Mind) calls Jamie his “Doubting Thomas” but totally disregards what he said. He tells Jamie to get on the bus or get out. Jamie goes to Claire and is frustrated. He tells her it’s over. There is nothing more they can do. Ever the canny lass, Claire tells Jamie she has an idea. When they get somewhere quiet to talk, Claire reveals her plan. Now when I say a quiet place, I say that with tongue in cheek. In the span of 10 minutes, Ross pops his head in, Dougal shows up and Rupert stumbles through. Not that great of a place to talk secretly, in my humble opinion. Nevertheless, Claire says they have to kill BPC to stop the battle. Killing one for the benefit of thousands seems worthwhile to her. She has a little of the poison she gave Colum left and she could slip it into BPC’s juice cup. Jamie seems to be having apoplexy over all the mortal sin floating around in the room.
Next we’re back in 1968 and Roger and Bree are riding in his cool car (shades of Frank Randall?). First they go to Fort William (the very place Jamie was flogged and where Claire was taken hostage by BJR). After Bree tells Roger about visiting Fort Ticonderoga with her Father, Roger starts quoting “I regret I have but one life to give for my country”. This is one of those not so subtle hints that Roger might be related to Gellis Duncan. Claire says those very same words to Gellis during the witch trial! Bree says she got a chill standing in the fort and Roger says its probably because of all the blood that has been shed there. They are standing next to the flogging post Jamie hung from. (Phantom of the Opera organ music plays in the background). Now I have a question. Doesn’t Scotland have termites? I didn’t think a wooden flogging post would last 200 + years. But apparently, it has (for dramatic effect if nothing else). Meanwhile, Claire goes to Lallybroch, which is still standing except for the roof and rotted wooden door. It looks like there is definitely some termite damage here. She sits on the steps and voices from the past haunt her. If anyone ever wondered why she loved him (which I can’t even imagine anyone would), this is why.
After Lallybroch, Claire goes to Inverness to the Hall of Records. She gets help to look up ownership records. They find an original Deed of Sasine that Jamie, Claire and Murtaugh signed in 1746 transferring Lallybroch to the Murrays. The clerk gives her a copy. Then Claire asks her to do an ancestry trace for Roger MacKenzie (Wakefield). (Just think how much time she could have saved with Ancestry.com!) Later Bree comes in after spending the day with Roger, and Claire asks how her date went. Bree tells her she went to Fort William and asks if Claire has ever been there. Claire replies, “Yes. Once. I didn’t care for it very much.” Bree asks if Claire misses Frank. Claire says that she does. Bree says she thinks she acts like she doesn’t miss him or that she even ever loved him. Claire is upset by this, but very dispassionately says she did love him. If I were Claire, I’d make a list of reasons why I loved him, just to remind myself and so that my response comes out more enthusiastically. (Please don’t let her do my eulogy).
Back in 1746, Dougal eavesdrops on Claire and Jamie talking about poisoning the Bonnie Prince. He is furious. First, his mistrust of Claire proves to be right and he almost married her. Second, I think he finally bought into the idea that Jamie was the better man and the best leader for the rebellion and for the clan. Dougal put his trust in Jamie, and this is the ultimate betrayal. Jamie tries to talk Dougal down, but we all know how that goes. A fight ensues, and when Claire sees Jamie losing the struggle because of his weak hand, she stands beside him and helps to push the dirk into Dougal’s chest. (An Emmy for Sam here, he really looks like someone who has just done the most terrible thing he could ever do.) Jamie tells the dead Dougal, “I’m sorry, Uncle.”
The family that slays together, doesn’t always stay together.
Fast forward to 1968, Roger and Bree head over to what looks like the local university where Bree wanders into a Scotland Nationalists’ group called the White Roses. Guess who’s leading the uprising? None other than Gillian Edgars aka Gellis Duncan. This is the year she told Claire she came through the stones at Crainsmuir Kirk. After she gets done rabble-rousing, Brianna approaches her and argues with her about her theory. Gillian asks her “Why are you here?” just like she asked Claire in the antechamber at the witch trial. The Roger finds them and introduces himself. There is a pregnant pause for dramatic effect. Gillian may have even flirted with Roger a little.
Bree and Roger head back to the manse to look for the Reverend’s journals from 1948. While digging through the piles of papers and such, a rat crawls over Bree’s shoes and she screams. Roger remains calm and hands her a flash light (to see them before they come or to hit them with?) Bree is not happy with the solution so Roger offers a Rat Satire. According to Roger, if you tell the rats there is better food somewhere else, they’ll leave. He breaks into song. Now, I know Roger is supposed to be a balladeer of old Gaelic music in the book, but he ain’t no Gwyllyn the Bard! I thought he was going to break out in a Rat Rap!
Meanwhile back at the battle….Rupert stumbles into the room just in time to see Jamie standing over Dougal with a bloody dirk. Rupert is shocked and turns to alert the others, but Jamie begs him for two hours in order to settle some business he has. He promises to return so he can turn himself in and receive the punishment he deserves. Rupert agrees on the basis of a now dead friendship. Now can you see that happening on “Cops”? Nah, Jamie would have been rolling on the ground with tasers in him or shot in the back!
Roger and Bree find the journals and Bree finds the newspaper article about Claire being kidnapped by the Faeries. Bree realizes that her mother was missing for three years. Roger tells her, “This must be the incident you were seeking.” Meanwhile Claire is visiting Culloden. She is very bitter at seeing the Bonnie Prince so esteemed. She also finds her wedding gift from Hugh Munro (Dragonfly in Amber) in an artifacts case. She walks out to the Fraser marker, sits down and has a chat with Jamie. She tells him about Brianna, her life with Frank, and then she says goodbye to him, which is something she has needed to do for 20 years. If only the marker had a message machine like the telephone.
Jamie knows he only has two hours. He finds Murtaugh and tells him that he killed Dougal. Murtaugh wonders why he didn’t do it sooner. (You gotta love that bugger!) Jamie has made out a Deed of Sasine transferring Lallybroch to his nephew under the guardianship of Jenny and Ian. It is dated one year earlier before Jamie was a traitor. This will keep the property in the family and prevent the Crown from seizing it. Jamie, Claire and Murtaugh sign it (Yes, its the very same document Claire saw at the Hall of Records.) Jamie decides that Fergus will take it to Lallybroch. Fergus doesn’t want to leave Jamie. Jamie says, “You must remember this for all of us.” Fergus tells him that he will not let him down.
Bree walks in on Claire pouring tea and confronts her about the man who is her Father. She realizes that Claire was 3 months pregnant when the “Faeries brought her back”, so Frank couldn’t be her father. Bree accuses Claire of secretly visiting her birth father and setting up a “chance” meeting for her. Claire tells her that he is dead. She starts to tell her about him and Bree goes all Brittany Spears when her Mother gets to the part about time travel and Culloden.
Back in 1746, Fergus says goodbye to Jamie, who tells him he loves him like a son. Claire adds, “Like our own son” and embraces him. Murtaugh lowers his head in a sign of respect to Fergus. Fergus walks away, but turns to look back on the only family he’s ever known. Then he turns back and heads to Lallybroch to do his duty. A roving artist painted this for him.
After the blow-up with Claire, Roger and Bree head to a pub. Bree takes after her Mother and tells Roger to keep an open tab! While they are sub-arguing about her Mother, Gillian Edgars strolls up to their table. She says she missed them at the rally. Bree apologizes and said she was tied up with her crazy Mother! Roger asks when the next one will come, and Gillian says there won’t be any more for a while. She’s going out of town. (Phantom of the Opera organ music plays in the background). Claire finds the brochure about the White Roses Rally and sees Gellis/Gillian’s picture. She goes to Gillian’s house and meets her 1968 husband. He appears distraught and depressed because Gillian has been gone for weeks. He offers Claire a drink and tells her that Gillian has been spending “his” money taking folklore classes at the university. She has filled several journals with her notations. He starts to fall asleep in the chair and says, “If you see Gillie, tell her I love her.” After he passes out, she grabs Gillian’s journals. Claire returns to the manse and reads the journals. The information in them is all about time travel and the folklore surrounding it. She is surprised to find out that Gellis believes there must be a human sacrifice and gemstones used when you go through the stones to make your travel easier.
In 1746 Jamie talks to Murtaugh about what to do. He wants him to lead the Lallybroch men to a safe area, and tell them to go home per his orders. He knows this battle is lost and he will not let “his kin die for no good reason”. Murtaugh asks what Jamie will do. Jamie says he will get Claire to safety and then come back to meet his destiny on Culloden field. Murtaugh says that he will meet him there. Murtaugh says his “good reason for dying” is to be with Jamie. The two friends look at each other, and all the respect and love they have for each other, is evident.
Bree returns from the pub and talks to Claire. She wants to know about her father but not about the time travel stuff. Claire tells her some things, but realizes its not something to be done in one session. She tells Bree that she didn’t intend to fall in love, she fought it, but it was the strongest feeling she ever had and she couldn’t help it. Later Claire goes to the Reverend’s study, where she left Gillian’s journals. She discovers that Roger and Bree had spoken to her that afternoon and she told them she was leaving town. Claire realizes this is the night Gellis goes through the stones. She wants to stop her but says she can’t because of Roger. When she did the ancestor search for him, she discovered that he is a descendant of Gellis and Dougal’s child. Claire worries her interference could affect Roger’s existence. Roger reassures her and agrees to go with Claire to the stones. He tells Bree it is just to humor her. Bree says what if Gillian is as nuts as Claire? He tells her, “Then we’ll watch her run into a 500 ton stone!”
Back at Culloden, Jamie drags Claire the opposite direction of the army getting ready for battle. When they arrive at Dougal’s horse, Claire asks where are they going. Jamie says he is sending her back to Frank. She says she won’t leave, and he tells her he knows she is with child. He begs her to keep the child safe because it is all that will ever be left of him. He gets her on the horse and off they go to Craig Na Dun.
Back in 1968, Claire, Bree and Roger pull up to Craig Na Dun and Claire recognizes the Edgars’ car. As they run up the hill they smell something. Roger says, “It smells like a Fucking BBQ!” That’s what Gellis said right before they dragged her off to burn at the stake at the Witch Trial. Proof positive, Roger is related. When they get closer, they see a fire in front of the stone and all three of them see Gillian go through. They realize she burned her husband due to her belief she needed a human sacrifice so she would have a smoother trip. Now, I have a question. How did she drag a dead man up the hill to Craig Na Dun? I would be out of breath just climbing the hill! I wondered in the book, too. But I digress. Claire asks Roger to go get help.
We’re back with Claire and Jamie who have arrived at Craig Na Dun. They get to the top of the hill and Claire says she hears the stone buzzing, but isn’t ready to go. She begs him to go with her. He touches the stone with no effect and says that even if he could go, it is not his time. His destiny lies at Culloden. He comes toward her and delivers the famous, “Lord, ye gave me a rare woman, and God, I loved her well,” line. Obviously his list of sins have been shortened due to time constraints. At last the Frasers have “grind in the mud”sex that lasts about as long as Jamie’s first time. Claire and I both forgave him because we knew he was under stress. I have a question, however. If his knees are covered in mud after this, why is the back of her dress clean? But I digress. She gives him the Dragonfly in Amber wedding gift from Hugh Munro to keep. (That’s how it ended up in that display case at Culloden). He gives her his father’s ring with a ruby in it. (Remember in the opening scene when she finds the ring, but it has no stone in it? Perhaps, Gillian was right about the gemstones?) Then he dances her to the stone, they tell each other that they love each other, he puts her hand to the stone and she disappears, as one tear rolls down his cheek. Sam you’re a hell of an actor, but what’s with the one tear thing? You should be sobbing and have snot coming out of your nose. I went through 2 ones of tissue for this scene! For God’s sake take a look at Cait. Now that woman can cry. I digress again. Back in 1968, Bree turns to Claire and says “I believe you! I don’t understand it all, but I believe you. There must be truth between you and me, no matter what.” Now we know she really is Jamie’s daughter, because she says the same thing he said to Claire, when she told him she was from the future. Roger returns and tells them he called the Police anonymously. Bree asks him to give Claire the information he found in the Reverend’s study. It’s too dark to read, so Claire asks him what it says. He tells her that his father found that Jamie Fraser survived Culloden. When Claire hears this, she turns toward the stones and says, “I have to go back,” as the sun rises over the standing stones. The glow is reflected in her eyes. She’s going back, if she isn’t blinded first!
So, that’s that! Before I go, I want to make one observation about Claire. I really felt bad for her in Season two, not so much in 1746 because of all the deprivation and sadness, but in 1968. The passion that we all love Claire for was completely missing when we first saw her at Rev. Wakefield’s funeral. As she rediscovers her memories of Jamie, it returns. Nowhere is it more evident than in 213. She starts out fading into the background while Roger makes the toast. And ends up with the sun gleaming off her face as she passionately faces the future. Her life of anonymity is over. I finally understand why she gave up hot baths to stay in 1746. It was because she really lived there, she didn’t just exist. It was the reason she could become a doctor in Boston. She never would have done that if she never went to the past. I can’t wait to see mature Claire take on the 1768 world next season. Again my compliments to the Emmy award winning work of the cast and crew. I love you for bringing my beloved Outlander books and characters to life.
Well, I wish that this could go on and on (she said sarcastically)! All those wonderful recap bloggers out there can keep their job! Recaps R Not Us! I am so fookin’ glad this is over, I can’t tell you. I will be on hiatus just so I can wash some underwear, because I’ve missed a few chores while writing this shite! If you had a few laughs, great,no matter what you were laughing at (even me). If you hated this because I made fun of so much tragedy, well, don’t read it. If you don’t understand what the fook I was doing with this, relax, I didn’t either. Despite all of that, I loved all of you who went on this journey with me. See you in a few. And remember, ttime is all we have.
And we need more cowbell!