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Outlander Recap: The Devil's Mark, Episode 111


This evening’s Outlander is brought to you by the Discovery Channel as we start with birds flying in synchronicity. A representation of Jamie and Claire’s love? Or just birds sensing a disturbance in the force…
We pick up where we left off last week with Claire and Geillis having just been unceremoniously deposited into the thieves’ hole. And everyone’s pissed. Claire manages to ask the most important question: Are we alone? Geillis assures her there’s nobody but earwigs, hornie-gollachs, and rats the size of lyam-hounds. Claire is as reassured as you could be. Which is to say, not really.
Claire decides to go after Geillis, but before she can even draw breath to do so, Geillis goes on the offensive, blaming Claire for their predicament. Claire’s all, “rational rational.” And Geillis is all, “too little too late my dear.” So Claire does the only sensible thing, she throws Laoghaire under the bus. Claire, I’ll drive that bus for you!
Geillis isn’t having it. Nor is Claire. Claire gets out the fact that she knows Geillis killed her husband, that no one is coming to rescue them. This all ends with everyone slamming their doors, going to their rooms, and spending the night in separate corners, Claire too furious to be anywhere near Geillis despite Geillis’ last minute change of heart and offer of reconciliation in order to stay warm together.
Claire clearly regrets she did not give up and cuddle as in the morning she says, “I suppose getting burned as a witch is better than freezing to death.” Clearly Claire is a newbie at being burned to death, as is made clear later when they walk past the pyre and Claire asks, “Is that what I think it is?” Geillis gets her line of the night so far, “Well, it’s not a Maypole, Claire.”
The gals are lead by the townsfolk screaming, “A witch a witch! We’ve found a witch, may we burn her?”  They’re taken inside what is presumably the concert hall/city hall/all around epic hall for the trial.
Then it’s time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights, it’s time to meet the witches judges on the Muppet show tonight! Waldorf and Statler make the season’s best cameo appearance as the judges for the witch trial.  Which is appropriate as after a night in the thieves’ hole Claire’s hair is definitely all kinds of fozzie. Waka waka waka.
We learn this is the church’s court, not to be confused with the people’s court where law and rules apply. Luckily for them, Ned Gowan is there to provide some kind of defense. He manages to make the witnesses that come forward look biased and crazy. The Court ends the day realizing they had better ramp up the witnesses for day two as Waldorf and Statler look depressed at the way things are going. Though they did get one loon who swore he saw Geillis fly away, which heartens the grumpy old men right at the end of the day.
And we’re in the thieves’ hole again. This time, Claire has alcohol courtesy of Ned to help temper her temper towards Geillis. They’re soon swapping stories like a couple of teenage girls. Geillis likes boys who are leaders, sex crazed, and unavailable. Claire won’t say who she likes which means she totally has a major crush on Jamie.
Geillis sets Claire straight: whatever happens, this town wants a witch burning. In the spirit of a last night confession, Geillis spills all, about raising money for the Jacobites. Claire scoffs, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country” an almost exact quote from American Nathan Hale, uttered more than 30 years after the current events of Outlander. We can forgive Claire for not quite getting the quote right given her drinking and general Britishness.  Geillis’ eyes, however, flicker in recognition at the phrase. Could she know where that came from? Is she from the future?
Day 2 of the People’s Court looks to be much bleaker for our quasi-witches. This time Laoghaire is there to, how does she put it, “dance upon [Claire’s] ashes,” which seems like an extreme reaction for someone so totally crazy. Also there is Father Bain, who in the books is sporting a festering wound from a dog attack that will ultimately kill him, is much sportier and craftier here in giving testimony against Claire. He throws himself on the mercy of the court, singing Claire’s praises and renouncing his own calling in the process. He makes everyone’s skin crawl so much with his misdirection that the townsfolk can only think to take it out on Claire and Geillis. I gotta think God was none to pleased with that performance Father Bain.
It’s at this point, Ned does what all good lawyers do, find a compromise that will save your client as much time and pain as possible. He pulls the women into another room and says it’s time to split the baby. Claire must renounce Geillis, who is the more believable witch, and save herself. Geillis first tries to get Claire to admit that she’s from the future, dammit! But Claire is slow on the uptake. Not even when Geillis drops the f bomb in her line of the night, “Looks like I’m going to a fucking barbeque,” does Claire catch on.
Despite the mean girl shade Claire has been throwing Geillis, she decides she can’t abandon her, and decides to go down with the ship. Ned tries to save them but is overrun by the pitchfork-wielding cast of Beauty and the Beast. During the commotion caused by the townsfolk locking Maurice in the cellar throwing Ned over the railing, Geillis tries again to tell Claire that she’s from the future, too. She tells her she thinks it is possible to go back, and she’s from 1968. Only she doesn’t say it that clearly or that succinctly and Claire is all, “What? What? They just threw Ned over that railing! Now they’re going to whip me!”
Strike after strike hits Claire until I just want to scream, “Dammit Fraser! Where are you?!” Just as I’m about to do this and wake up the children, JMoFoF arrives. He manages to knock everyone, including Claire, to the ground. He informs the Court that he “swore an oath before the altar of God to protect this woman, and if you’re telling me you consider your authority to be greater than that of the almighty, then I must inform you I am no of that opinion myself. The first man forward is the first man down.”
Geillis is so shocked by this act of bravery, she reveals her small pox scar and sacrifices herself to save Claire. The small pox scar finally clues Claire into the fact that Geillis is from the future. Jamie wisely takes advantage of Geillis’ distraction and hustles Claire out of town.  And that’s the last we’ll see of Geillis before she gets f-ing barbequed. Or is it? As the crazy townsfolk are surfing Geillis out of the hall, Waldorf yells, “Stop! She’s with child!” Did they let her burn, or stop it? We’ll have to find out later… Like years later.
Meanwhile, back on Walton Mountain, Jamie is tending to Claire. He assures her she won’t have scars and then asks her to be honest and just tell him already, is she a witch? Claire responds with her best line of the night, so far, “Are you serious?” She takes a deep breath and decides. She has to finally explain her crazy behavior to Jamie. She is from the future. Jamie stares off into space as he hears this as if this will somehow make the words she just said go away. In the book he stays silent so long, Claire believes he has just up and left. But Jamie doesn’t play that. He’s there for her. He hears her and he believes her.
Claire gets everything she’s kept pent up out and he listens. And apologizes. Jamie realizes now when she got captured by the Red Coats she was trying to get back to the stones, and back to her “husband.” Jamie stumbles on the word “husband” before apologizing profusely for beating her. Claire’s tears just keep flowing and Jamie tries to comfort her with his best Gaelic whispering. Claire asks if Jamie really believes her. Jamie delivers his best line of the night, with the little head wiggle someone loves to add as they say a funny, clever line from the book, “Aye, I believe ye Sassenach. Although it would have been a good deal easier if you’d only been a witch.”
Jamie and Claire ride off into the heather, putting as much distance between themselves and Crazytown as possible. Claire thinks they’re heading towards Lallybroch, Jamie’s home, but Jamie has other ideas. His first exceptional idea is to wake Claire up with some friendly fingers so he can watch her and remember what she looks like. My closed captioning lets me know Claire enjoys this because it says there are “gasps and moans.” Jamie wants this mental picture because his second great idea is to take Claire and deposit her at the stones so she can go back in time.  Gotta get back in time… Don’t bet your future, on one roll of the dice!
When Jamie shows Claire the stones, she’s in shock. She is absolutely transfixed, staring at them, oblivious to the hand Jamie has held out to lead her over to them. When they finally get to the stones, Jamie secures the area with a sword sweep before asking Claire what she did last time. Claire starts walking towards the stones like she’s being pulled out of an Oceanic Airlines flight.  And she’s not stopping.
At the last second, Jamie grabs her and pulls her back, unable to let her go just yet. Claire seems to realize she was just about gone, and can only nod along as Jamie tells her she must go back. He tells her there’s nothing on this side for her, and Claire nods along unable to even respond. Jamie tells her he’ll wait back at the camp to make sure she’s safe. And then he’s gone. Claire’s brain finally kicks in for a moment, as she screams his name one last time. When he stops, though, she can only get out a weak, “Goodbye.”
It’s then time for Claire to sit down and do some thinking. She spends a great deal of time looking back and forth between her rings, unable to decide what to do. She then looks up at the stones, and towards her future past, before looking back to her past future: Jamie and the camp, where smoke signals are going up that I swear spell out “Claire!” Claire finally decides, enough is enough. Time to either you know or get off the you know.
Claire starts slowly walking towards the stones, and then it all goes black. I’m just about to swear something about f-ing David Chase and his f-ing endings when we suddenly see Jamie’s campfire. He’s cried himself to sleep having lost Claire. Only he hasn’t. We hear Claire echo her words from episode one, “On your feet, soldier.” As he wakes up in a holy shit moment she finishes by saying, “Take me home to Lallybroch.” Then it’s tears and hugging and kissing and feels all around. Lady Broch Tuarach and her Laird are going home.
Outlander Recap: The Devil's Mark, Episode 111 Reviewed by Deborah Thompson on 12:54 PM Rating: 5

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