Everyone take a deep breath with me.
That feels a bit better. Thank you, Ben.
What a bitch of an episode, amirite?
It was really difficult to come up with my top ten moments from The Garrison Commander. And to be honest, most of them take place in the first 15 or the last 5 minutes of the episode for obvious reasons. But let’s not focus on the horrific here. Think of “Top Ten” as post-Outlander therapy. Accentuate the positive. No time like the present.
My Top Ten Moments from Outlander, episode 1×06: The Garrison Commander are …
1. Tobias Menzies’ Face
Let’s face it (get it…FACE IT), even when it was brutal and harsh, you could not look away from Tobias’ face. From his first shock at seeing Claire at the commander’s table to the last glimpse of that malicious smirk as Claire finally leaves with Dougal, that face was the star of the episode. I simultaneously wanted to punch it and dive into its laugh lines to do the backstroke.
2. This Duo
Can we just get Lord Thomas and Dougie Mac to go on the road together? Thanks.
3. Claire Going Full-On Sasha Fierce
Let’s be real. Claire is Beyonce-ing her way through the 18th century in a way that would scare the bum roll off of most of us. The only situation I’ve ever been in fraught with as much peril was the time I braved Best Buy on Black Friday to get a 60 inch Toshiba for the price of a pair of socks. Most Outlander readers like to self-insert themselves as Claire: “Oh yes, I would be that sassy and resourceful. Oh yes, I’m just that brand of stick-it-to-the-patriarchy-feminist. Oh of course Jamie would totes want to do me nonstop in the heather.” But the real truth is: Claire is Sasha Fierce: one of a kind and badass beyond belief. The best moments are when Claire gets so beside herself that even her inner Bey runs and hides behind Ms. Fierce.
“Claire, all ye all right, lassie?” AND MY HEART WILL GO ON. This moment. All suspicion is removed from Dougal’s countenance as Claire comes down those stairs (until Claire tells him to beat it so he doesn’t get collared for the ambush). He’s so worried for her, and the shift in his tone is PRESH.
Before it got super-gruesome, Black Jack’s honesty and interrogation skills of Claire were a joy to watch. The back and forth between two equally matched minds was completely fascinating. Caitriona was so excellent in this scene as well, tearfully giving a false account of Claire’s reasons for being in Scotland while looking like a woman who can’t lie to (literally) save her own life. This screencap is Black Jack saying, “I would not believe you if you said that night is dark and day is bright.” GOD he’s such a PRICK. I love it.
6. Dougal SWAGGER
Well, we’ve just been subjected to one of the most horrific scenes on television in recent memory. Much like Claire, we can’t even catch our breath after that sucker punch. BUT in walks Dougie Mac, scaring gormless corporals and saving the goddamned day. He went from being one of the biggest threats to Claire in the first four episodes to being her savior in this one. Everything about this. EVERYTHING.
If you get that “little stitious” reference, I will love you forever. The sulfur spring is such a pivotal moment of realization. A turning point for Claire and Dougal, but also for the tone of the rest of the series. And I love how it all hinges on the fact that Dougal is waiting for the water to “burn [Claire’s] gizzard out.” The superstition takes something dangerous and makes it silly to us instead. Bless your superstitious heart, Dougal Mackenzie. I needed that.
THERE IT IS. The name of my most favoritest male character ever on my television screen for the first time. James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser. Look at your precious name. (I am equally bummed that we may not get the “I can’t marry you! I don’t even know your real name!” “Oh, it’s JAMMF” lines in the next episode because … well, Claire’s just seen his name there. And that was one of my favorite Jamie moments from the book. BUMMER.) But still, the excitement of seeing his name RIGHT THERE. Only a fangirl could love it.
9. “So … how far have you gone?”
Oh, the big virgin reveal. If anyone asked me after last week’s Talking Outlander where I thought episode 1×06 was going to end (and a few of you did), my answer was: “Without a doubt with Jamie saying, ‘I reckon one of us should ken what they’re doing.'” SO PERF. Who doesn’t remember the days of having the “how far have you gone” talks with new boyfriends and girlfriends? Always awkward, probably because it’s relegated to human beings between the ages of 13 and 17. BUT ANYWAY. I love love LOVE Jamie’s embarrassed earnestness in his answer. And Claire’s attempt to hide her shock (and awe?) was equally perfect.
10. “What does Murtagh know about it?”
This look says he knows a WHOLE lot about it. Oh, the scenes we didn’t see of all the Highlanders giving Jamie the advice of the century would have been such gold. Poor Jamie. LOOK AT MURTAGH’S SMUGMUG. He’s like the Dr. Ruth of the clan, I can tell.
Whew. Well, we got pummeled this week, you guys, no doubt. But I hope I was able to shed some light into the cavernous hole where your heart used to be after watching this episode. What were your favorite moments?
Join us TOMORROW at 2pmEST as we Talk Outlander with our friends from Hypable. This week it’s all LIVE so join us on twitter (use #TalkingOutlander) and on our Q&A on YouTube. See you then!
For more gifs like the Claire one above, visit Starz’ Outlander gif wall.