Insta-Reaction: Outlander, Season 3, Episode 11

Season 3 is here! My intention is to write an “Insta-Reaction” post for each episode soon after viewing, to share some initial thoughts, questions, reactions — you name it.

Warning:

Spoilers

I may be talking about events from this episode, other episodes, and/or the book series… so if you’d rather not know, now’s your chance to walk away!

Outlander, episode 311: “Uncharted”

The official synopsis (via Starz):

After making a leap of faith, Claire washes up on an island where survival is her only option. Navigating treacherous waters crippled the Artemis, so Jamie devises a joyful moment for his crew in the midst of setbacks.

My take:

Major plot points:

  • After drifting at sea all night, Claire washes up on an island, but has no idea where she is.
  • She sets off through the jungle in search of water and — hopefully — a town.
  • At the point of exhaustion, Claire ends up at the jungle home of Father Fogden, a somewhat deranged but kind-hearted disgraced priest, who offers her assistance and shelter.
  • Meanwhile, the Artemis was damaged in a storm and Jamie and the surviving crew members have come ashore to repair the mast and sails.
  • Claire and Jamie are reunited!
  • Marsali and Fergus are married on the beach by Father Fogden.
  • Claire drinks some delicious turtle soup (laced with A LOT of sherry), gives herself a penicillin injection to combat a fever from infection, and then she and Jamie have some hot and steamy reunion sex.

Insta-reaction:

Now THAT’s an episode! Action, drama, humor, and some sexytimes. What more could an Outlander fan want?

Claire is one hell of a woman. There’s just no debate about that. After finding herself alive but alone on the island, Claire starts her trek through the jungle. She’s swarmed by ants (ick!) and wakes up the next day with a humongous snake sliding across her (aaaack!). But does that stop Claire? Not a chance. She needs water to survive, and needs to find a way to find Jamie, and she is just not going to stop!

Kudos to Caitriona Balfe and the Outlander make-up team — they went all in with her sunburned, disheveled, bug-bitten look. (And of course, she still looked beautiful!)

Father Fogden was just as nutty as expected, and Mamecita was appropriately menacing, even while washing Claire’s clothes and treating her bites and scrapes. I loved the conversations with Coco the coconut — good for Claire for figuring out how to convince Father Fogden to help her.

Back on the beach on the other side of the island, Jamie and the men from the Artemis are busy making repairs. As they talk, we learn that they sailed through a gale, which damaged the ship and led to several deaths, including Captain Raines. Apparently, Jamie is now the senior man and therefore the captain.

Claire sees the ship offshore and is able to signal to Jamie just in the nick of time before the ship leaves. A dramatic reunion takes place on the beach, as Jamie and Claire run towards each other through the surf. It’s very, very romantic.

Claire has suffered a gashed arm while running through the jungle, and Mr. Willoughby stitches her up. Jamie remarks that the crew needs something to lift their spirits, and suggests a wedding. He’s given Marsali and Fergus permission to wed.

Claire and Marsali have a sex talk — and you just know that a sex talk from Claire has to be good! Marsali is looking forward to finally getting to sleep with Fergus, and asks Claire for advice on how to do it without getting pregnant. She wants to enjoy it first before starting to think about babies. Smart girl. She even admits that perhaps Claire isn’t such a devil after all.

Fergus and Marsali get married on the beach in a somewhat comical ceremony, with Father Fogden officiating. Favorite lines from the book are preserved, including the priest asking whether the groom has a c*ck, since you can’t get married without one. So silly and adorable. Fergus has no last name to give, until Jamie steps forward and says that Fergus’s full name is Fergus Claudel Fraser. (Don’t mind me, that’s just dust in my eyes…)(*sob*)

The ship sets sail, with Jamie and Claire sharing the captain’s quarters. Claire is getting drunk from the turtle soup and is feverish from the wound on her arm which has become infected — but she’s also feeling very amorous, and Jamie doesn’t resist for long. They’re funny and sexy having turtle soup sex (Jamie remarks that this must be what it feels like to have sex in hell), and the episode ends on that happy note.

Insta-reaction wrap-up:

Getting Claire and Jamie back together is a very, very good thing! This episode was a great antidote to the misery of the last one. Jamie and Claire are together, are in love, and are happy — at least for now. Being Outlander, we know this can’t last for long, but right now, it’s awesome.

I’m happy to see Marsali thawing toward Claire. The wedding was funny and sweet, and I loved Jamie’s naming of Fergus.

Although it almost seemed like Claire’s trekking through the jungle would go on forever, she found refuge just before it might have started to feel like too much. Oh, how that woman suffers for Jamie! I bet when she was back in Boston, considering all the pros and cons of going back, she never factored ant bites and snakes into the equation!

Of course, the Artemis is now bound for Jamaica so Claire and Jamie can continue their search for Young Ian — and where presumably there are British law enforcement men waiting to arrest Jamie. Can these people ever catch a break?

Wrapping it all up…

I loved this episode. The production team made excellent use of their South Africa filming location to give us some truly beautiful scenery. The first half of the episode felt like an adventure tale, and I thought the production did a fantastic job of showing Claire’s courage and determination.

The Jamie and Claire moments were wonderful, and thank goodness they included the turtle soup! There might have been a fan riot otherwise.

Yes, handfuls of details from the book were omitted, but nothing that couldn’t be spared. Frankly, this is the section of the book that feels overstuffed and too reliant on coincidence for my taste, so I’m glad to see the show paring it down to essentials, for the most part. (Still, what are the odds that Claire and Jamie would both end up on the same island? Let’s not worry about that too much, and just be glad that they did!)

Only two episodes left in the season! It’s really been stellar so far. I can’t wait to see how it all wraps up, although I’ll be devastated when it’s time for the next Droughtlander.

Meanwhile, I’m looking forward to seeing Claire and Jamie all fancied up (and Jamie in a wig!!!) next week.

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