Brianna Was Not A Girl Scout
This is the saddest PB&J Sammy ever, girl slather it on, you’re gonna need the protein in those peanuts and carbs in that jam when you’re alone and hurt in the woods. But it is a nice call back to the ones her mom packed for the same trip. Also, Bri brought matches, why not a couple Advil and an Ace bandage while she was at it? I’d be packing a carry on for the stones, or at least I’d fill my pockets and terrible 70s crossbody with as many items as possible — definitely some Luna bars and a bottle of Xanax cause I’d be freaking out that I was actually in the woods alone in the 18th century.
I thought we’d had seen the last of Season 3 and Claire’s endless trip through the Jamaican jungle last year, but Bri stumbling through the woods might as well have come with a trigger warning: lost wilderness scene – “goes on for far too long, might be sensitive to some S3 audiences who remember Doldrums too well.” Also, if I had sprained her ankle in hour 2 of a time travel scenario, rendering me barely able to walk in desolate Scottish backcountry, I would have immediately turned back, Brianna is far braver than I would be in the same situation.
Get you a friend like Fiona
Let’s give it up for Fiona, clearly the unsung hero / best friend / Kris Jenner of Roger’s story. She drives him up to the stones, knows he’s attempting to time travel, and does it anyway. She then encourages him to try, cause if he fails he’s already shaved his beard and looks pretty dumb in those pants from a rejected animatronic pirate in the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. Fiona also has the discernment to not mention the fact Roger lost his sideburns somewhere between that last episode and today and might possibly be wearing an ill-fitting wig.
Huge Humblebrag: I’ve stood next to these stones:
When you have a pic like this, you share it #sorrynotsorry. Can we laugh that they keep these stones in the middle of a walkway near an office door? And that I made this face amongst a bunch of “serious” journalists? Ok, moving on.
This Moment Needs No Witty One-Liner!
* High Pitched Squeal *
This moment earns a spot in the top ten based solely on the embarrassing squealing/moan/noise I made when this flashback of Daddy Frank appeared. Between this and Murtagh two weeks ago, we need to record ourselves watching these episodes. The noise I made probably woke the neighbors.
Laoghaire Loves (Bad) Drama
We talk about craving and wanting adaptation from the writers nearly every week (yes, every week and multiple times within it), so when Laoghaire made a surprise and not-from-the-book reentrance on the show, I sat up a little straighter, an adapted storyline had begun! We loved Murtagh’s reappearance in Savages, so I had a little hope, that Laoghaire could give us an interesting twist on Bri’s trip back through time to Scotland and her ancestral home. Well, that was not to be, sadly. The magic of the Savages adaptation could not hold out over several episodes, plus writer Bronwyn Garrity was NOT at the helm of this script. Instead the writers presented a sort of half-baked idea of Bri being taken in by Laoghaire and made to listen to her tales of woe, and unrequited love, and jealously. While in someone else’s hand, this adaptation might have been ok, but it wasn’t interesting or helpful to the story. Bri visiting Lallybroch and meeting her family for the first time is NOT a point of needed adaptation, those familial bonds are necessary, Bri seeing the Fraser family, feeling a bond with her grandmother Ellen, and simply BEING in a place where her Father grew up and was the Laird of, needed to be shown to us and given to the character of Brianna.
Instead what we’re given is a frustrating, and frankly DUMB storyline that couldn’t possibly be grounded in any sort of truth or characteristics we’d likely believe about Brianna. If I had traveled back in time and my father was Jamie Fraser and I’m a woman trying to safely travel to the port, I would immediately be telling everyone my last name was Fraser in hopes of A. SAFETY (duh), and B. For someone to help you either find your family/Lallybroch or help you in any way get to said Port. I don’t buy that Bri wouldn’t have used the Fraser last name when introducing herself to Laoghaire, or after spending what seems like WEEKS under her roof. And common courtesy tells us she would have definitely introduced herself to Ian. Which brings up Ian not introducing himself when they first meet. LIES. This would not have happened, Ian is a gentleman and would have used his full proper name and probably enquired about who Brianna was and where she came from..
Loose Lips Sink Ships
After Laoghaire finds out Bri is Jamie and Claire’s daughter, she spins some crazy tales about people at Lallybroch gossiping about her parentage, and how Jamie turned her away and might do so again. First off, Bri would not believe a stranger over her own mother, which she does eventually tell Laoghaire, But to even go down this path of thinking is ridiculous. And while Bri has done some questionable things in the past, why the hell would she tell a perfect stranger who is bad mouthing her mom about her knowledge of the future and endanger herself and potentially others? Though we’ve known that Laura Donnelly (Jenny Fraser Murray) would NOT be appearing in Season 4 of Outlander because of other work commitments, her absence was never more strongly felt than in this clunky storyline. Could they not get Laura Donnelly and wee Jamie or whoever else for a few minutes of #Lallybrochshit and family time instead of wasting precious minutes with Laoghaire telling bible stories and witchcraft nonsense? The fandom would take up a collection for Laura’s fees, someone start an Omaze or something stat! Laoghaire’s reappearance is lazy storytelling and is the 50% enraging part of the episode. If some enterprising young editor would have just cut this part entirely from the story, from Bri stumbling through the woods to Joanie dropping her at Lallybroach, this episode wouldn’t have made me tell about 20 people how annoyed I was with it.
The one positive of this Laoghaire mess: her garden is goals… like rivaling #RidgeShit in how much I want to walk around and inspect and look and get my hands dirty.
Feeding Babies Rum!
Damn, Ed Speleers is a great actor. Whether he’s pulling one over on the Frasers or making Roger play for his life in a coin toss, he brings it EVERY time, you cannot take your eyes off this villain. Come to think of it, Tobias Menzies as Black Jack Randall was the same way… maybe Diana writes the best villains, or perhaps Outlander’s casting department should stick to hiring villains and let anyone else hire main characters like Bri.
(Peep the ring ya’ll)
Instead of the Carolinas, Roger should head straight to Vegas upon arrival in America. He’s won ever random ass coin flip Stephen Bonnet does in attempts to get rid of him. Also, Roger’s hair grew like six inches in a few weeks, he’s like the Henry Cavil GIF from Mission Impossible come to life. Was it Monat or Sugarbear Hair vitamins he took on the long voyage to America?
Who is this able bodied, adult woman accompanying Brianna on her voyage to America? Lizzie is supposed to be a frail teen, who fits in the front of Bri’s cloak as they cry on the side of the ship as it sails away from Scotland. Not to be one of those people, but really. Though if the casting prowess of B-characters on Outlander remains true, whoever she is, she’s probably going to be awesome.
Like Murtagh a few week’s prior, Frank’s sudden reappearance is a balm to our weary Outlander fan souls. He brings back a sense of mooring, he pushes the story forward in a meaningful way, and well, he’s just a good actor. I could go on for paragraphs about how much I liked this addition to the story, and how much it brought to the character of Bri and how much it sent her off on her next chapter, but I’ll just let us enjoy this look again:
If you’re ever having a bad day, or need some reassurance, just look upon this image of Frank and know somewhere there’s a dad standing on a dock to see you off, who thinks you’re doing alright.
No Jamie and Claire
I don’t think I realized until about ten minutes after the show closed that Jamie and Claire never made an appearance in the episode. Sure, their essence was everywhere and they were mentioned, but we never physically saw them. Foreshadowing of seasons to come? Say it ain’t so! I stole this pic from Sam’s Instagram because this is how I like to think of them during all of this: kicking back in their easy chairs, doing #RidgeShit, just WAITING for the shit that’s coming… and retirement.