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Outlander recap: Not in Scotland Anymore

Claire and Jamie experience all the fineries of the French court, including a hairless honeypot

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TV Show
Drama, Romance, Sci-fi
run date:
Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan
Ronald D. Moore
Current Status:
In Season

Despite the distance — of miles, and to a lesser extent, days and weeks — Jamie is a man haunted. His rapist, Captain Jonathan “Black Jack” Randall, figures prominently in his nightmares, in which the fiend’s countenance takes the place of sweet, loving wife Claire. And there seems to be nothing either Jamie or Claire can do about it.

“He’s alive in my head. I can’t get him out,” says Jamie after a particularly disturbing dream.

“You will, in time, I promise,” Claire soothes. “Black Jack Randall is dead.”

But it’s clear from her actions that Claire herself isn’t entirely convinced that Jamie can shake off Black Jack’s shadow. The next morning she seeks solace from a local apothecary. (Sidenote: Though I often find voiceover tedious, I really liked the historical perspective our heroine’s musings about the upcoming French Revolution and the still-to-be-built Eiffel Tower added here.) Anyway, she finds one Master Raymond — a quirky herbalist/snake-oil salesman, who quickly sizes up Claire and realizes she’s not one to be trifled with. In fact, her reputation proceeds her: He’s heard about her encounter with the Comte St. Germain. And seeing as the Comte is Master Raymond and Claire’s shared rival, they must be friends with each other. In agreement, Master Raymond gives Claire a concoction that will help Jamie sleep soundly.

But for now, Jamie and Murtaugh are retraining Jamie’s left hand after Black Jack nearly crippled it. Their swordplay draws a crowd of onlookers (after all, dueling is outlawed in France — a detail you’ll want to store in your memory bank for later). Murtagh shoos away the gawkers, and the pair begin their scheming for how exactly they’ll thwart the impending rebellion. Murtagh suggests squelching the source (i.e. killing Bonnie Prince Charlie). Jamie demurs: He’s no assassin!

The two don’t have to wonder too long how they’ll infiltrate the Jacobites’ inner circle — an invitation, arranged by Jared, arrives from Charles. He wants an audience with Jamie… at a brothel.

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And if there were any lingering doubts about the the nature of this establishment, the madame — prop in hand — tries to upsell the patrons with dildos. To buy or rent! In between such scandalous interludes, Charles inquires after the clans in Scotland. Will they unite in one purpose, in support of the rightful heir? Jamie is honest with him: Those men can’t even agree on what color the sky is. The news miffs Charles, but Jamie reminds him that he asked for an honest answer — sycophants need not apply. Eventually, Jamie’s candid nature wins over the Prince, and he enlists Jamie to be his envoy of sorts. You see, since the Prince is “unofficially” in France, he’s not allowed to attend court. But Jamie can, on his behalf and petition the French Minister of Finance for funds. Because what Charles really needs to make his cause successful is money.

Of course, this is the opening Claire and Jamie need, and they intend to make sure the Prince’s war chest remains empty.

NEXT: “To rid yourself of such a lovely forest…”