Outlander Recap: Spanky Panky

Outlander Season 1 Spoilers

Droughtlander is finally over, Outlander faithful, and the long-awaited continuation of Claire and Jamie’s adventures is an intricate depiction of clan politics, familial dynamics and the shift in social mores over the centuries.

Oh, who am I kidding? All anyone’s going to be talking about tomorrow is the spanking. And the sex. But mostly the spanking.

So let’s get to it, aye? Read on for the highlights of “The Reckoning.”

VIDEO How Outlander‘s Caitriona Balfe Nabbed Her Role With One Line

SEARCH AND RESCUE | Soon after the episode opens with a Jamie voiceover, we see Jamie, Dougal and the men meeting with Horrocks, the deserter who claims to know who shot the man Jamie’s accused of killing. Sadly, Horrocks is not young Fraser’s savior: He says Jack Randall is the real killer, and there’s no way that Jamie will be able to exonerate himself by accusing the man who whipped his back so much it looks like a wicker picnic basket. All of this will prove important later, but all I can think about is the fact that Claire is, at that very moment, headed for some very bad business with Black Jack himself.

Thank goodness, the guy who was left to guard Claire comes riding up to tell Jamie she was kidnapped by British troops, and soon Jamie is rappelling down the side of the British fort, perching in the window and kindly thanking Randall to take his hands off his wife.

Jack is pervily delighted to see Jamie and thinks it’s a hoot that he’s married to Claire… who’s no less naked or in danger of losing a nipple than she was the last time we checked in. (Side note: I complain at work when the kitchen is out of those little bags of peanut butter-pretzel sandwiches. In contrast, Caitriona Balfe sanguinely spent hours with her curvy bits laid out on a table like a deli platter. Lady, I salute you.)

Randall disarms Jamie, who vibrates with anger — particularly when the captain calls Claire a “mendacious slut.” Joke’s on you, Black Jack: That pistol Jamie brought in isn’t loaded, and in the moment of surprise after the Brit tries to shoot him, Jamie knocks Randall out and escapes with Claire. “It never occurred to me to kill a helpless man, even one such as Randall,” Jamie voiceovers, moments before Dougal’s men set a diversionary explosion and Jamie and Claire escape by plunging into the ocean below.

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UNFINISHED BUSINESS | Happy ending, right? Och, no. When they’re a safe distance from the fort, Jamie ascertains that Claire is OK… then rips into her for disobeying his orders. (Claire’s hair looks absolutely amazing in this scene. That detail is not important at all, but it’s worth noting.) They say a lot of nasty things, many of them at high volume and uttered centimeters from the other’s face. He thinks she blames him for them almost getting killed in the glade, she’s mad at him for being mad at her, and for their first real argument, it’s a doozy. “I ordered you TO STAY PUUUUUUUUT!” Jamie yells (and that’s an entirely accurate representation of how long it takes Sam Heughan to say “put”). He then calls her a “foulmouthed bitch,” and James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser, we do not use that kind of language to talk to Our Lady of Eternally Fixing Your Shoulder.

The moment it’s out of his mouth, Jamie realizes he’s gone too far, and nearly folds in half as he admits that he was afraid something terrible had happened to her. “You’re tearin’ my guts out, Claire,” he whispers, and of course she goes to him, both of them utterly wrecked, and they forgive each other for everything.

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END OF THE MATTER | But Dougal’s men haven’t quite gotten over the fact that Claire’s actions put them all in danger and made them a target of the Crown. At an inn that evening, they freeze her out; upstairs in their room, Jamie explains that a little spanking will go a long way in buying back the group’s approval. Claire looks absolutely horrified as she realizes that Jamie means to tan her hide. When bargaining doesn’t work, Claire takes to hurling whatever’s handy at her determined husband; and when he finally gets a hold of her after a chase around the room, she kicks him in the face and claws his cheek before he bares her tush and (rather gleefully) achieves his goal.

Kudos to Richard Clark, who directed this episode, and Ron Moore and Matthew Roberts, who wrote it, because this scene plays out exactly like I always imagined it would. The music, Claire’s anger, Jamie’s just-grin-and-bear-it attitude and the men’s reactions downstairs take a moment that could have been icky — and which some TVLine readers have been decrying since the Starz series was announced — and made it very fitting for the times and the characters. (And if you disagree, I want to hear about it in the comments.)

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BE LEERY OF LAOGHAIRE | The gang returns to Castle Leoch, where everyone — save Colum and Laoghaire— is happy to see the newlyweds. Jamie’s uncle also is angry that Dougal has been raising money for the Jacobite cause, but after Jamie points out that it’s not hurting anyone and Prince Charlie is unlikely to return to Scotland anytime soon, Colum lets his hotheaded brother keep the cash to put toward the efforts.

Laoghaire is less easily appeased. She tearfully confronts Jamie in a hallway and asks how he could marry Claire when he had demonstrated affections for her. He promises her they’ll talk about it, which she interprets as “Please find me in my secret, rock-skipping place and proposition me while wearing a corset without anything underneath.” Jamie certainly looks tempted when she tries to kiss him, but he reluctantly pulls away and informs her that he won’t break his vow to Claire. Pro tip, JAMMF: That I’m-an-honorable-man thing you’re selling would be more believable if you had managed to pull your hand away from her boob before you’d finished saying it.

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MAKING UP IS HARD TO DO | Jamie later finds Claire, who had kicked him out of her bed after the shellacking, and assuages our 21st-century sensibilities by suggesting that the two of them forget about traditional marital gender roles and instead do what feels right for them. (He’s far more dramatic about it, there’s kneeling and a dagger involved, but that’s the gist.) For a moment, it looks like Claire might not accept his offer, but from the way it’s already creeping off her shoulder, her nightgown is clearly on board with the plan.

In no time, Mr. and Mrs. Fraser are going at it on the floor in front of the fireplace. If you ever need a reason to love Claire, let it be that she grabs the aforementioned dagger, holds it under her husband’s chin and warns him never to raise a hand to her ever again all while continuing to thrust against him in rhythmic fashion. Is it any wonder he readily agrees? As he later tells her, “I am your master, and you are mine.”

Know who’s no one’s master, and hella mad about it? The same person who placed a witchcrafty looking bundle of twigs and bones and such under the Frasers’ bed: “Laoghaire,” Jamie growls.

Now it’s your turn. Did the premiere meet your expectations? Were you touched by Jamie’s turning the Lallybroch key into Claire’s wedding ring? Do you feel bad at all for Laoghaire? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. christine says:

    Well, damn.

  2. rk535 says:

    AMAZING!!!! Can’t get enough!

  3. Alichat says:

    “Pro tip, JAMMF: That I’m-an-honorable-man thing you’re selling would be more believable if you had managed to pull your hand away from her boob before you’d finished saying it.” Exactly, and if he wasn’t breathing so heavily. Frankly I’m not a fan of this added scene. I liked it in the book where we really didn’t know how Laoghaire felt. To me, this seems too blatant. It ruins the surprise that Geillis reveals later, and also changes the giver of the “Geillis needs you” message. (Sorry non-book readers if that is confusing.) As for the spanking scene, as I’ve said numerous times, that was the point I threw the book down and didn’t pick it back up for awhile. I think the thing that disgusted me the most in the book was, as written, I got the impression that Jamie was really enjoying it all….on a sort of Black Jack level. I like the portrayal of this moment better on the show. They spent more time with Jamie explaining why, but also, it came off more as something he felt was his duty, but he wasn’t 100% sold on it being the right thing to do. Still, they could have left the “didn’t say I wouldn’t enjoy it” line out. The argument scene after the rescue was phenomenal. The dialogue, the delivery, the emotion, the look on Jamie’s face after he’s grabbed Claire and called her a foulmouthed b……then he completely crumbles. It was fantastic acting from them both. The added scene with Colum was surprising….that they had him chewing out the three about the Jacobite gold, Dougal calling out Hamish’s paternity, and then when alone Colum revealing his belief that Jamie would have been the best successor to him. All items implied in the books….it was interesting to see those play out onscreen. What else can you say about the sex scene except it was hot. And I literally laughed out loud when Jamie asked what f-ing means because of Sam’s delivery of that line. As for next week’s promo, I feel we will be finding a picture of Laoghaire under the word “Delusional” in the dictionary.

    • Alex says:

      I’m glad there’s someone else who hated that scene in the book. It’s not ‘spanking’ – it’s nonconsenual beating that left her badly bruised. It was stomach turning and out of character. The idea that violence against women was the norm for every previous time and ‘less developed’ culture in history has been refuted by historians. I’m just glad the show is past it – I can stop dreading it. I think the casting is terrific and am otherwise enjoying the series a lot.

      • Aimee says:

        “It’s not ‘spanking’ – it’s nonconsenual beating”. Couldn’t agree more. I actually hadn’t read the Outlander books until I watched an advertisement for the TV series and as I thought it looked good I looked into the book series online to see if it was worth a read, so before I started the books I’d seen the “spanking” scene mentioned and suffice to say the beating was not what I was expecting when people said there was spanking involved in the book.

      • Stephanie Scott says:

        Yup same here; that has largely been my barrier to reading more in the series b/c I just had a hard time with agreeing Jamie is this ultimate romance hero when he beat his wife. The show did a much better job of showing them battle it out, and discuss where these ideals came from, and to move forward with a partnership.

        • Winter says:

          I would really suggest that you read the books more. Jaime is not perfect at all he’s stubborn as a rock and can be quite boorish but his flaws make him a better character and more relatable. Besides the things that he goes through to protect Claire are way worse than anything he puts her through.

        • Cindy Reeves says:

          If you’ll read more of the books you’ll find that Jaime is not meant to be the ultimate romance hero. In fact , the author really dislikes her work referred to as romance. The scene is one of many to show him flawed.

      • robin says:

        I agree. The fact that it had been treated as funny makes me sick.

        • L says:

          You people really need to lighten up! The whole violence against women thing, really.
          It would have been appropriate for the 1700’s.

    • Moira says:

      One line made me snort in particular. Jamie’s suggestion that his father ‘disciplined’ his mother. First, I don’t think level- headed Brian would have been so stupid and backward but if he had, the way Ellen is described and given how she handled Dougal when he got in her way, she would have schooled her husband with a sharp object far more readily than Claire.

    • Alichat says:

      I forgot to mention…..I thought Murtagh’s “thaaannnk yoooouuu” was hysterical.

    • tsevca says:

      I agree with you on the Laoghaire part. Jamie was this close to give in and that´s just not him. Plus when he says her name at the end, you can see how he knows she could be dangerous to them. I don´t want to spoil to non-readers if they accidentally read it, but I think I can assume you read Voyager, right? Why would he do what he did there if he knew all this? He has the habbit of cutting throats of those who layed their hands on Claire and this thing was obviously done to hurt her.
      It´s maybe because I read the first two books in Czech, which has terrible translation, so I often had to think how the sentence would be in English and what different it could mean, but I never saw the spanking too bad. They apparently used the original dialogues and I found out half the sentences there were wrongly translated. Reading the books, it seemed to me that Claire just had her pride hurt and was pissed at him, but in kind of funny way, no psychological damage. Do you know how I mean it? But I consider the part when he kisses her bruises, apologizes and makes love to her again tenderly to show his remorse and his real feelings to her important to understand their relationship. They are very passionate about each other and like it rough from time to time, but love each beyond the sex and passion. I missed that there. But on the other hand, Sam´s acting in the spanking scene was amazing. Jamie is funny when he tries to be the man, to use his authority on Claire, but reading it, I smiled picturing it. But watching Sam do it, I laughed out loud.
      Was it? It always seemed to me Colum respected Claire and Jamie, but he had two things important to him – the clan and most of all Hamish. And he would never let anyone put his son´s life at risk. And it seemed to me, Hamish being the chief one day was a priority he shared with Dougal. Jamie even said how Claire saved his life by marrying him, because with English wife, he is no threat to Hamish, how Dougal would be chief until Hamish is adult, but some of the clansmen would pick rather Jamie than Dougal and Jamie permanently. You know, I had the impression Colum was for Dougal, but not the clan so much. In the show, it´s the opposite. Well, I feel Dougal is also very different. In books, Jamie is the closest thing to a son for him, he likes him and is way nicer to him. He is attracted to Claire, but would never disrespect her being Jamie´s wife. He´d hit on her when single, but wouldn´t make a big deal out of it when she´s Jamie´s wife. His warm feelings towards them are genuine. He would simply never put them before his interests. But the constant anger…

    • Dottie says:

      I agree that this episode made me wonder about how future episodes would handle the whole Laoghaire thing. The books infer that neither Jamie or his sister knew about Laoghaire and the “ill wish”. Claire hadn’t told because Laogharie “was so young”. Also Claire’s wedding ring is one of the things which convinces Roger that what Claire tells him is true. Are they going to show the poem about kisses on a ring made from a key?
      And, I do miss the day excluded from the episode which showed Jamie saying all the deprecating things about himself when he was “beaten” by his father. Claire says “I do love you Jamie” and he says Murtaugh was right about women.

      • tsevca says:

        I think those things too. There are many parts that didn´t make it to the show I miss for myself and/or the story. That´s why the show will always be for me to see those nice things acted out, but the books the main thing.

      • Deb says:

        I’m also wondering about the Laoghaire storyline. It’s clear in the books that Jamie doesn’t know about her role with the ill wish. Why would Claire trust her now since she’s been exposed? Her trusting acceptance of the message to go to Geillis sets up our next drama, but the previews indicate they have a confrontation/fight over Jamie. Not enjoying this departure from the book at all.

        • tsevca says:

          And why would he do what he did in Voyager if he knew about Laoghaire being this bitch? Claire might simply go to Geillis thinking Laoghaire doesn´t like her, but does her duties. But Claire now knows she tried spells twice and wouldn´t do anything about that? That´s this close from slipping them some poison. And Jamie looked like he considers Laoghaire really dangerous. And things would still end up the same?

          • Deb says:

            I’m wondering the same thing. In fact, Claire mulls this over in Voyager when she finds out about Jamie’s actions during her absence and eventually accepts it because she realizes he didn’t know about the ill wish and Laoghaire’s betrayal of her. The previewed confrontation also is weird–since I agree, if Claire recognizes her as a threat–she’d take action. Ron made sure to say in at least one panel they were going to have to make adjustments in the future seasons due to changes/choices they’d made this season. This story-line change seems to have rippling repercussions. I also agree with your judgement of Jamie’s commitment to Claire–he will be coerced and tempted much more in future books without wavering so this apparent interest in Laoghaire with no real duress was a real misstep on the part of the writing team.

  4. Joanne says:

    This review also could of been called “50 Shades of Plaid”.
    So glad Outlander is back on my TV!

  5. Diva DIary says:

    I’m so glad this show is back.

  6. Derek117 says:

    I’ve waited so long for the return of Outlander, that I’ve not only watch all three showings of the East Coast feed, but will do the same when it airs in my California timezone beginning in about 30 minutes. [Thank you cable TV!]

    To say I enjoyed this first episode of the second half of the season, is a understatement. It hit all the right notes and tensions. It strikes me that Outlander is an appropriate “counter-point” to Game of Thrones (GOT), because where GOT seems to focus on the brutality and violence, Outlander has the same level of realism–without the gross out factor. And, plus, Outlander has a compelling love story–with a very strong female character–and throws in a bit of British history for good measure. Point…Set…Match, Outlander!

    Finally, as much as I’m astonished by the beauty of the Scottish countryside where Outlander is filmed, I have to agree with you about Caitriona Balfe’s hair. I know she was a model before transitioning to acting with small roles in “Escape Plan” and “Now You See Me”–but her hair is so beautiful/curly in the first fight scene with Jamie after her rescue, that I couldn’t take my eyes off of head.

    • canadian ninja says:

      Easy there – Outlander is a good show but it isn’t really in the same league as GoT. I get it though, you’re pumped for the show.

      It may be more to some peoples tastes but its not all genteel. Half way thru season one and they’re easily outpacing Thrones on torture and attemted rapes.

      It does have a doozy of a romance though.

  7. JAO says:

    Absolutely amazing episode! I’ve read the books and just don’t compare them any more. This series has its own life and rhythm. Love this show and everyone connected with it! Thank you Starz!

  8. iammusic says:

    Good lord, I think my room turned up to about 1000 degrees at the end. Phew! That was hot and a half.

  9. Janet says:

    I just love this show so much I signed up for Starz today just to see it. Every episode is like watching a beautifully realized feature film. And oh, did I mention how incredibly sensual it is? Hot!

  10. The spanking scene was exactly as I envisioned it – it was brilliantly done. The scene with Laoghaire was not so well done. I understand they wanted to show how jealous she was and hurt but Jamie should have not been that tempted by her. I also felt he should have been a lot more forceful about putting her aside and not been so apologetic about it either. I’m pretty sure I know why they played it like that (SPOILER: read Voyager) but I still didn’t like it. That end scene – Jamie and Claire’s reconciliation – I think I might need to buy a fire extinguisher – it nearly set my TV on fire (and me) whew :D

    • Alichat says:

      Agree with everything you said about the Laoghaire scene. My biggest issue was with his reaction which was really out of character.

      • Pat P says:

        I don’t think he would have been that turned on by Laoghaire either, knowing how he feels about Claire. I think he would have looked, but would have resisted much better.

      • Trish says:

        So totally agree with what you all said about the “Laoghaire scene”. Jamie loves Claire and would never, ever ….well, as you said, totally out of character. Not a good choice by the writers or the director or etc., etc. For me, this was harder to watch than just about any other scene yet (the flogging scene was harder).

  11. Liz says:

    It was a wonderful episode, but… The fight scene was amazing, the acting great. Jamie breaking down, Claire seeing this and apologizing, amazing…. The spanking scene very well done too.
    But I must say that the sex scene at the end, while hot and necessary to the story (to see those two get back to each other), well… You could see that it was the first sex scene between Cait & Sam. The wedding scenes were better.
    AND Cait’s hair, going from long to short, to long… You could see they didn’t shoot the episode after the wedding but before…
    I could also have done without seeing Jamie breathing hard and groping the b… I mean Laoghaire, to see him SO tempted… Pfft. That girl is nuts.
    Anyway, let’s see what’s gonna happen next! (even though I know cause I’ve read the books).

  12. Nola says:

    As glad as I am that Outlander is back on TV, I hated the whole story line with Jamie beating Claire. It was horrible on paper and it was horrible on the screen. She did not consent, she said ‘no’ the whole time. There is no poetic licence whatsoever to justify voyeuristically downplaying spousal abuse. It was disgusting, not romantic.

    • Jeanne says:

      It was a spanking, that’s what people did back then. Stop reading/watching historical fiction if you can’t take off your modern glasses. It was a great scene. I laughed while reading it-all six times. And I laughed during the show.

    • Dianne Hill says:

      “… no poetic licence (sic) whatsoever to justify voyeuristically downplaying spousal abuse.” There was no poetic license needed. That was the way things were done in that time period. The terms spousal abuse and domestic violence had not ever been uttered in Outlander’s time period. Nor in Claire’s. Had the writers’ (or Diane Gabaldon for that matter) re-written history to be politically correct, this story would never be told. Climb out of this century and go back in time to see this story as it should be told. If you can’t handle the violent nature of life as it was at that time, I suggest you watch something else.

      • Christine M says:

        I totally agree with you. We must remember this is HISTORICAL fiction and as such, the author has an obligation to be as accurate as possible about every aspect of life in those times. I thought the whole episode was brilliantly done and very well acted. I am so impressed by the skills of Sam and Catriona to portray such violent and vulnerable emotions.

      • L says:

        Excellent post-Exactly right.

    • Drew says:

      I haven’t seen the scene on the show, but in the book it wasn’t spousal abuse. Jamie and other men received worse beatings for endangering their group far less than Claire did at this point in the story. Claire was just being treated like anyone else in a time when things like that happened. It isn’t pretty, but it was what it was.

    • lynnieg says:

      The language is as important as the action. As Jamie points out, Claire comes from a gentler place where most decisions are not life-and-death. In the clan Highlands 280 years ago (from 2015), the consequences of the slightest decision were often very grave. The reason he does what he does (besides the justice required by the men) is to impress upon her that her simple decision to wander off (although her secret is that she was trying to get home) could have killed her and put a target on his back and the backs of several clan members. In the book, he later explains it further – that his own whippings at the hands of his father and schoolteachers – helped him to cement in his very being that the consequences of even the smallest action must always be weighed. I don’t in any way condone spousal abuse, but if I were in Claire’s shoes, I might see the action toward me in a gentler light – just words would never have left the same impression. And my deeper consideration of consequences – having tasted a more severe consequence from someone who cares passionately about my welfare – might in the long run save my life.

      • tsevca says:

        Exactly. She put herself, Jamie and all the other men in serious danger and she didn´t really understand how dangerous that was. If Jamie was captured, he´d be whipped again and then hanged. KILLED. People must understand this was different time, it was absolutely normal. Jamie was raised knowing this comes when his wife does something bad and he knew every woman of that time was raised knowing it as well. Claire not knowing it would actually be more shocking than him beating her. And most importantly, Claire didn´t like being treated like that, but even her, with her modern opinions, later accepted it and never saw it as some domestic abuse. Later, she even offers getting spanked from him for something more justifiable. And let´s not forget that also Ian, one of the least violent people of the series, also spanks his wife from time to time – and his wife is someone like Jenny.

  13. spdavid says:

    Two comments:

    When you are at war you kill the enemy….leaving Randall alive is a major mistake.Randall is never “helpless” and he’ll see his own survival as weakness in Jamie.

    And Claire needs to adopt the “when in Rome” attitude or she’ll find herself waking up dead one day.

  14. #Droughtlander is over!! lol Loved this episode. Was so worth the wait! Pertaining to the “spanking scene”. I, as a book reader, knew this was coming up. It wasn’t fun to watch but i have to admit i chuckled a wee bit when she got her “kicks” in. lol. Now to Laiohaire (sp). I understand why they put that extra scene in at the water edge but i still wished it wasn’t there. I think it would have been more surprising to see what transpires later in the series than that scene. Oh well.
    All in all, it was an awesome episode and Cait and Sam soo deserve an Emmy nod for the “fight” scene. Two thumbs up!

  15. Jo says:

    Ronald Moore noted that “if it’s in the book, then it’s in the show”. The producers of Outlander are in a no win situation with regard to the Claire being disciplined by Jamie scene. If they left it out, fans would complain. They left it in….fans complain. But here’s the problem — Outlander is a historical fiction book…which means that there is accuracy within the fictional story being told. Guess what folks…women were beaten for virtually every reason imaginable in many, many cultures…both in history and in the present time. It’s gratifying that our 21st Century sensibilities have us view this as a horrible act against women, whatever the circumstance…but it doesn’t mean we should censor the scene if it existed in the original material or if it does depict the accuracy of a certain time. Not showing it….doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

    What makes it so uncomfortable for viewers to watch is that the violence is being done by a character that we view as the sweeping romantic hero who shouldn’t have such actions. But Jamie is a product of his 18th century time period..and he notes this to Claire as he tries to explain his actions, I doubt it matters if we agree with those excuses or not. If we are going to cry foul at the depiction of that scene in the show, then we’d better be screaming bloody murder at the number of times Claire has had to fend off a rape!

    • Alichat says:

      “Ronald Moore noted that “if it’s in the book, then it’s in the show”. ” and with that in mind…..where is the honesty pledge? I’m really bothered that it has been left out so far. I thought The Reckoning would have been the best place to put it once it was left out of The Wedding.

      • Kayla says:

        There is a deleted scene of the honesty pledge from the wedding episode.

        • Alichat says:

          Reeeeeallly? I have not seen this. But still, why hasn’t something been aired that mentions that, ties to that, or otherwise? I don’t get it. It’s such an important moment that’s threaded through their life together.

          • Chuck says:

            I think it will come up when she tells him her truth. That conversation will be prefaced with that “you don’t have to tell me but..” and then she’ll tell him.

      • tsevca says:

        Look up outlander extended scene on youtube. There are about 13 those scenes. Some of them are really important, more than the ones added like the whole episode made from things that weren´t in the book, some that are just nice for book readers like close up on the weapons that they have to leave before coming to church.

    • marypat53 says:

      my complaint is that Moore will say “it”s in the book” to justify the scenes he wants to do, but will cut other scenes critical to the story. Not to have Claire’s point of view balancing the Reckoning was strange when she was a central character and\ was beaten by the only man she trusted. I wish there had been narration from both, with them gradually coming to accept each other. We saw Claire, obviously angry with Jamie, but you never knew what she was really thinking. In the book, she was overcome with remorse when she realized that he could have been killed because of her.

  16. joanapolis says:

    This article rocks, all the way down to the point about her shift falling off her shoulder. LMAO. I too have thought how Cait deserves beyond extra kudos for the extra role her beasts play in this scene. It must also have been awkward being the only one bearing her gifts her while surrounded by these two handsome fellas. This episode overall exceeded my expectations. The intensity was amazing, the acting on another level, and incredible music all made it for me the best episode yet. Oh, and the sex was great too. 😉

  17. Drew says:

    I haven’t watched the episode yet, but based on the book, this isn’t spousal abuse or violence toward women. It was the same discipline that everyone in the group receives when they put the lives of the others in danger… Jamie and other men get beaten much more than this when they endanger the group.
    If we want to put it into context, Claire is being treated more like an equal here than as an abused wife. It is still uncomfortable and unpleasant, but it is supposed to be.

  18. AnitaC24 says:

    Truly surpassed expectations. The spanking scene was cleverly written and acted — it was had all the right emotions and choreographed wonderfully, plus devoid of creepy close-ups and less than six minutes — kudos!

  19. 1mars says:

    Seriously folks, if you cant get your head around this is a historical novel/series, you are watching the wrong show. Claire’s outrage at being ordered around by Jamie when she was in mortal danger apparently didn’t transfer to boring Frank deciding where they should go and what they should do on their “second honeymoon.” It’s still a man dictating to her. Researching his family history, yep, sign me up. I didnt especially like the punishment but I understood it for the time in history.. I didnt see any outrage for the floggings or the child’s ear nailing….that’s just how it was.

  20. Lorena says:

    Good to know that writers in tvline think that worrying about how the domestic abuse that was happening during the era is depicted in a romance (that is not portraying things realistically anyhow because it is a romance and not a depiction of how marriages really were) is just “21st century sensibilities”. Way to be tone deaf.

  21. Kirstin says:

    Lol, look, if some dom/non-con type action is what pleases you, that’s absolutely fine; we all have our erotica turn ons. It has certainly powered decades of ‘bodice-rippers.’ But please don’t try to sell ‘that’s just how it was then.’ (One of my fav things is when people try to huff about that re GoT rape/torture culture. Uh, it’s a fantasy world w dragons – actually not historical fiction.) as noted, studies have shown this blanket shrug about women in history is uninformed and far more complex. The dangerous element in downplaying or romanticizing things like this is that it promotes rape culture now. Interesting note – discussion of this scene (and how it didn’t seem organic) came up pre-publication of outlander and what it would mean in terms of its genre classification.

    • Drew says:

      Does it promote rape culture when one of the men in their group is lashed for endangering the others?
      We aren’t talking about a husband who didn’t like the way his wife looked at him so he beat the crap out of her. We are talking about a community with rules and practices that they each abide by, and each of them is punished when they break those rules. Are you suggesting that women aren’t capable of being held to the same rules as men? She essentially broke a law in their culture and was punished for it, the same as any man would have been.
      I think that your comment belittles the suffering of women and men who have actually been the victim of domestic violence.

  22. I was pretty surprised that Jamie managed to keep his erection during that dagger pointing…

  23. CA says:

    I wonder if the outcry of Claire’s “punishment” would be as such if Jamie were portrayed as evil or bad? Or would the viewing folks chalk up the actions of him as simply the evilness of his character?

    I agree with what another poster said — viewers seems to be upset that the act was committed by Jamie…not that the act was committed at all. That’s an interesting hypocrisy.

  24. Maryann says:

    That “spanking” scene? Sorry, all I have to do is hear about it. I’m done.

  25. My says:

    Reminder: Claire is not a 21st century woman. She comes from 1946, so she’s a 20th century woman.
    I hated the spanking scene in the book, but that was my 21st century mind set. From the historical perspective, it’s what was done.

  26. Kim says:

    The show is beautifully done, costumes, sets, acting. I did not like the spanking in the book neither did Claire. The sex scene was very difficult to watch. It’s one thing to read it and entirely different to see it. Way too graphic plus the actors looked a bit uncomfortable too. I would like to see a bit more hinting than the actual deeds. Had to fast forward and delete so kids wouldn’t stumble upon it.

  27. abrown says:

    they could not have done the spanking tScene any better! Well done!

  28. Kimmie says:

    Wow…I have never been able to understand those who freaked out at the belt-to-the-butt scene in the book. If I’d not realized there was such an outcry, I’d have read it and forgotten about it by about two pages later. He’s from 1700s, she disobeyed, she’s his wife, he needed her to understand the gravity of what she did, etc. He swatted her w/a belt to the butt – something that was done to young boys and girls daily back then. Yeah, he got a bit of a kick out of it – she was so freaked out by it he probably couldn’t understand what the big deal was (and looking at his back, and seeing he probably swatted her a handful of times, and not w/all his might put into it – agree!). She was not “badly bruised” or “beaten” – she was disciplined in a way that was completely normal for people in the 1700 and 1800s, she was sore the next day, and that was that.

    • marypat53 says:

      In the book, Claire says she was held down on the bed, with his knee in her back, being beaten within an inch of her life. He tells her that if she doesn’t cooperate, he will beat her until his arm tires. She reluctantly cooperates until” the first searing crack of leather on flesh, “When Dougal tells Claire that it had sounded that she was being half murdered,we hear her thinking that even the sphinx could not keep silent when on the receiving end of a strap wielded by Jamie Fraser. Next she is faced with riding a horse after ” a severe beating” and has to dismount because ” the pain grew steadily worse” Jamie tells her she will feel better the next day, but will not be able to sit for another day or so. A few days later, he lightly slaps her bruised behind and tells her she deserves those bruises. If we are to believe that the characters are telling the truth, this was a beating, not the comic spanking that Moore told preview viewers “to enjoy.” The book described a typical punishment, although there were social reformers at the time who campaigned actively against wife-beating. The scene was toned down to place Jamie in a more positive light. .

  29. Nancy Wright says:

    Loved your commentary, spot on and it made me laugh. Did you notices how soft and squishy BJR’s voice got when he asked if he could see Jamie’s back? Nice touch. I also loved how much thicker Jamie’s Scots became when he argued with Claire, his pronunciation of put being the best example. And not only did Claire threaten him with his dirk while making her position perfectly clear but her sexual position was almost metaphorical. She was riding (taming?) him.

  30. Cindy Reeves says:

    Here are my thoughts for those who are disturbed by the “Spanking “scene”. Remember, the story is after all fictional. The characters have many flaws just like we all do. The author, the brilliant Diana Gabaldon, has stated many times that the story is in part about a long-lasting marriage. Marriage ain’t easy folks, especially if you are two strong willed people who come from two different worlds. Those worlds collide in the form of scenes like the “spanking” scene. Jamie didn’t punish his wife in anger. The playful music in the background was a clue that Jamie wasn’t out of his mind in a rage. He spanked her with the belt because it was his expected “duty” in that time period and frankly he was too naive in at this point in his marriage to know better. When he realizes he may have killed any hope of a happy marriage, he comes up with winning her back with the oath of fealty. This mirrors of the oath that he would not give to Colum. He swears loyalty to Claire, vowing never to touch her in that way again. Their real or personal marriage vows take place in that inn (it wasn’t at the castle) when they each use that dirk to make the promises real. Ironically, they made a blood oath at the wedding with a knife, but Claire didn’t even know what the words meant. She was forced to follow through or end up in the hands of BJR. She may have been held down in a humiliating way for the spanking, but she put herself in the traditional man’s position to explain what kind of marriage she expected to have with Jamie. They end the scene on equal ground. (Well, on the ground too!) The sex scene is raw and brutal because they both basically feel turned inside out with emotion. The book describes it like they are trying to become one. It is not meant to be a 50 shadish sadistic romp. They are trying to heal each other’s wounds. They are broken in so many ways. The heart of the story is forgiveness, loyalty, and love with all it’s flaws. Yes, at times that is ugly, messy, and uncomfortable to watch. In real life, yes, run as quick as you can from an idiot with a belt! But remember this is fiction. The river fight and the spanking scene are metaphors for all the hard and horrible things that couples face in a marriage. In the end, they find love and mutual respect. as Cait tweeted during the episode: RESPECT.

  31. Ms Mel says:

    Loved your Recap! Hilarious! I’ll be following your posts. Love the show and the books. Every scene in the show is perfection.

  32. Deb says:

    Hated the scene with Leery and “tempting” Jamie. This is not the Jamie we know and love. Listened to the podcast with Ron and episode writer Matt Roberts and discovered it could have been worse–Matt was pushing for Jamie kissing Laoghaire and then pulling back. Thank God wiser folk argued against that and Ron agreed. This isn’t a case of creative adaptation, but more, “he just doesn’t get it” for Matt. Readers know how bad it will get with Leery, but that has nothing to do with Jamie’s feelings for Claire (and eventually hers for him) which are the bedrock this series is based on. We love him because he wouldn’t be tempted at all. Especially not this early into their marriage. I felt the rational that “I’m still good–see how tempted I was, but I stopped myself?” is a male perspective–Matt’s not Jamie’s. It’s Jamie’s emotional maturity and his unwavering commitment to loving Claire that propels this magic. Thank God they pulled back before they lost it. That said, Cat is the most fearless actress I’ve seen. She (and Sam) manage to bring the episode “home” where it belongs.

    • tsevca says:

      Really? I thought Diana said how much Ron understands this story. Exactly, Jamie wouldn´t even wonder for a second. His devotion to Claire and their marriage is absolute, Claire might be falling love, but he always loved her and his moral code wouldn´t allow it. He was in situations more tempting than virgin ambushing him in a place where he goes to be alone, trying to seduce him on wet rocks by stating that she is, on the opposite of his wife, a virgin. I melt seeing Sam, but being in Jamie´s place and he doing what Laoghaire did, I wouldn´t be tempted.

      • Deb says:

        I know right? That’s why I was so surprised/dismayed by the scene, and then stunned when Matt discussed how far he had wanted it to go and how much he had argued for Jamie succumbing even further. Ron mentioned another staff member had argued strongly against the kiss which was filmed, but not used. He made the decision in post production.

        • tsevca says:

          It might be the thing Diana mentioned. She said that she said only once that some character wouldn´t do something and they changed it, but wouldn´t say what it was. And Ron pretended (obviously pretended) that he doesn´t remember.

  33. Yoko says:

    I love and look forward to your weekly recaps! Spot on!

  34. Carole Ahmadi says:

    It was truly amazing and well done – I’m totally hooked on this series

  35. Panama says:

    An entertaining review!…enjoyed reading it as much as watching the show.

  36. Diane says:

    I loved Jamies emotional brilliance in this eposode. I really dont thing Laroiohaire would ever be good for Jaimie even when Clair is gone. Martough is right. I have to admit i laughed pretty hard when Clare hit Jamie during the spanking scene..llove the books and show…Cant wait for Saturday

    • tsevca says:

      Well, Jamie never meant to make it something more. He was horny, probably mostly from his feelings for Claire, but would never try to hit on her. Claire was in his eyes fresh widow, he respected her too much and was more experienced than him. If she suprised him and was in, she might expect something more and Jamie didn´t believe in pre-marital sex. On the other hand, Laoghaire was known to be easy, was obviously into him, but still a virgin and wouldn´t start something like that on her own, because she still had wedding in her future, after which she´d be expected to be virgin. She was ideal for some one time thing and when Claire saw them, his ego used it, because he hoped she could be jealous.

  37. Kay says:

    Loved the argument scene after the rescue, both Jamie and Claire in that eye lock with contempt. Both are extremely convincing. The spanking…well done. The humor in it made it less uncomfortable. The sex scenes aren’t smutty but real and sensitive. There is a deep passion there and the cast and director portray it well. Jamie’s(Sam) has a rockin body, and Claire is delicate and fair skinned and very self- confident! I enjoy watching her with the clansmen, she’s comfortable in her own skin. I also love Jamie’s Scottish brogue. I’ve been to Scotland and would like to go back after seeing Outlander. Looking forward to much more.

  38. AS says:

    I haven’t seen this show yet. I have a few questions. Is this show considered “romance,” “historical fiction,” or “sci-fi?” I’m just confused since I haven’t seen it yet, and I’m trying to figure it out. My husband watched the first season and told me that the lead character touches a rock and is magically transported back in time? Is that addressed at all in the episodes? Do any of the characters on the show know she’s from a different century? I keep reading episode recaps and the fact that the main character is in fact from the future never seems to be addressed. I’m just curious, and confused. Help!

    • kimmie says:

      AS…it’s not at all sci fi. Other than the beginning when Claire goes back through the stones (from 1940s), there is no time travel element. She spends most of the book (and I assume the show) hiding who she is and where she is from, fighting her growing feelings for Jamie while missing home and her husband (who is portrayed much nicer and more importantly in the show vs the book), and trying to get back to the stones, hoping they’ll get her home. The book (and I assume the show) is much more about the relationship between Jamie and Claire (and regardless of what DG wants, they were just voted the most best and most romantic couple in romance fiction) and his family, the evil Black Jack Randall, and the political and historical goings on of the time (I learned a lot!).


      Later on in the book series there is more time travel, but other than Jamie no one knows about Claire. However, it is truly a historical fiction series – even the romance part takes a back seat to the rest of the storylines (there are more and more as you get through the books), and the time travel is a very small (important but barely touched upon in many books) part of the series. The books are huge – ranging from 600+ to almost 900 pages, and there are currently 8, w/at least one more to come.

    • tsevca says:

      She travels back in time, because Diana wrote her character too modern for 18th century :D. That´s all what is to it. She put it there to explain it. There is some more travelling through time later, but isn´t comparable to typical sci-fi shows. Mostly, it´s historical story told from perspective of someone who knows how thins end up, so there are some funny notes about it, but isn´t like those stories when you have made up characters that influence happenings of the whole country and it´s all unbelievable. Be prepared for the fact that Diana likes to hurt her characters,
      Basically, it´s mix of all the genres, there is something from history, psychological, romance, you could say sci-fi, family books, but also detective thriller and later there are some parts from 20th century as well. I like how Diana described it as book not about how two people get together, but why people decide to stay together for 50 years.

  39. Ardea Heinen says:

    I knew the ring/key had to be from Lallybroch ! Loved your observations! Yes Jamie was tempted but it’s only because Claire has denied him for so long, but he came thru! Although I would like him to say that he cares for Claire instead he keeps blaming Dougel for the arranged marriage. He had already said he has fallen in love in the voice over so he should live up to that and proclaim he is committed to his marriage for other reasons other than a “vow”.

    • tsevca says:

      But that´s the thing, Jamie will be tempted much more and never even thinks about it, because he loves her so much and being faithful means so much to him. That´s why he also remained virgin until his wedding, because saving sex for marriage is something he strongly believes in.
      He can´t say Laoghaire that he married Claire because he loved her. From Laoghaire not knowing it comes several other things that will happen later. We don´t see in the books, what exactly he told her, but later we find out Laoghaire thought he was forced into the marriage, suffered in it and she was his big love, that they were those lovers from this big love stories, separated by destiny, but longing to get together again.

  40. Danna badall says:

    The premiere met my expectations. I did read the first few books. The series is intelligent, not totally mired in the romance, historically interesting and set designs and costumes spot on. As I live w indoor hot water plumbing and heat as well as where the sun eternally shines, I am grateful this was neither my era nor climate for my life. They are either cold, wet, in mud dirty or all three at once. I will watch each episode for as long as they film them.

  41. marypat53 says:

    The spanking was not about justice. It was about power: who had it, who did not, and the military-like chain of command code that guided the clan. Much has been made about how Jamie needed to spank Claire in order for the clan to accept her. Jamie also needed to beat Claire for the clan to accept him as a man who knew his duty. Had he not punished her, the clan would not have seen him as weak. However one might feel about it, there is at least a harsh logic present there.

    Early on we hear Randal taunting Jamie, with “Who is the man in this marriage?” Claire threatens Randall and tells Jamie basically to save him and leave. Later, when Jamie and Claire argue, Claire was not just angry and assertive, she was downright aggressive and it was Jamie who blinked. Overcome with emotion, masterfully acted, the scene was staged to make viewers naturally feel sorry for Jamie while Claire who seemed ungrateful and shrewish until the last moments of the scene—which is probably why so many fans said she deserved the spanking. At the premier, Ron Moore told viewers to “enjoy the scene” which turned into an attempted comic romp, with a lively jig playing and with Jamie dangling a strap in front of Claire, cheerfully assuring her that a good hiding will make her see things differently, oblivious to the fear and panic on her face. As Jamie is nothing less than insightful, that moment was particularly nonsensical.

    As the farce continues, Claire fights back, throwing things, scratching his face, blackening his eye and giving him a impressive kick, so when Jamie finally subdues her and admits to enjoying the proceedings, one can almost hardly blame him, especially when shown with a bruised eye and scratched face the next day. The whole episode was set up to set Claire up and to justify Jamie’s actions. What is most telling is Jamie’s comment “you don’t have anything to say in the matter” and in the rest of the episode, Clare had very little to say indeed, which is also odd, considering her character and the pain and humiliation she had undergone. (Rubert acknowledges that a strapping “it hurts like hell.”
    Although we know she isn’t speaking to Jamie, we don’t really know what she was thinking. They say that history is written by the victors and this episode seems to endorse that idea. The story would have been more powerful and would have made more sense if the writers hadn’t tried to make the punishment scene “fun” and if we had heard both Jamie and Claire work their way back to each other.

    • tsevca says:

      You should read the book then. There is quite a long part where Jamie explains Claire why he did it. Why you think he did, is a factor, but the least important one there. In all 8 books there are very few moments of Jamie feeling insecure and it´s never in a case like this. He would never do anything to Claire (I don´t mean just physically.) because of what others might think about him. People often judge him because of Claire´s actions and it never made him to stop her or punish her. But Randall´s note was the last thing to cause it. And to the last thing in the 2nd paragraph, he absolutely means it, it isn´t impropriet joke.
      And after reading it, you would also know what Claire thought about it. It´s never like how could he, their relationship can never be repared… She´s pissed, she is, but more like in a way that he hurt her pride. She instantly thinks about what she could do to him in return, she actually sounds like a kid plotting a revenge for having to go to bad early. But she isn´t pissed for long, he sleeps on the floor that night and she even thinks about telling him to come to bed until she turns around, which brings out the pain of her ass and she´s like “you know what, sleep on the floor, you deserve it”. Two days later, I think, he explains it to her, she even laughs half the time and when she hears his explanation and examples of how he used to get spanked (he uses it to explain why it was necessary and why he did it for Laoghaire), she even tells him she loves him for the first time. He does promise her to never do it again, but not for feeling bad about it, he repeats more than once that she did deserve it and they joke about it even few times.

  42. Annie says:

    Season 2…or the remainder of season 1 is going very well. The spanking scene was done so well, it was better than the book…because Jamie is kind of enjoying it. The scene at the stones is remarkable.. You can feel the connection between them and how hard it is to say goodbye, especially for him. Outlander season 2 is wonderful.

  43. Susan Coppinger says:

    I don’t think it is OK at all that he beat her. I think she should have never let him touch her again. No excuse for a man that beats his wife. I bet he will do i5 again. They as ll do once they start. Plus it would be too embarrassing to have all those people know what he did.