Perhaps one day, Claire and Jamie Fraser will end an Outlander season by sitting in the sun and happily, peacefully sipping some of the finest whisky their still has ever produced. But the Season 6 finale is not that day.
Things go from bad to truly awful in Episode 8, “I Am Not Alone,” a season-capper that once more separates Mr. and Mrs. Fraser and thrusts Claire into mortal danger. Read on for the hour’s highlights.
BIG HOUSE UNDER SIEGE |The episode begins where the previous one left off: Richard Brown and his “committee of safety” demanding that Jamie hand Claire over, so they can arrest her for Malva’s murder, or things are going to get ugly. Lizzie, Jo and Mrs. Bug run for help, leaving Himself and Herself alone at the Big House. And pretty soon, the situation devolves into a full-on shootout, with Claire and Jamie barricading themselves in the house and returning fire as they dodge Brown’s men’s bullets.
“This is what he wanted, not to arrest ye, but to have an excuse to kill ye,” Jamie grunts at his wife as they attempt to stay alive. Eventually, Brown waves a white handkerchief and approaches the home to say that they only want to take Claire to a nearby town called Salisbury, where there’s a judge and a court. But Jamie vehemently refuses, shooting Brown’s hat out of his hand as a warning.
So the Frasers hole up in the bullet-riddled home they built, with Claire wondering whether — if Jamie is right and the committee is planning to set the place ablaze come nightfall — this is the night that the obituary Roger and Bree found comes true. She points out that it’s May, and the newspaper clipping said the fatal fire took place on the Sabbath before the 21st of January. But Jamie knows firsthand how little you can trust the accuracy of what’s printed in a broadsheet. So they settle in, uneasy, and hope that reinforcements will come soon.
They don’t. So they chat, and in their conversation, Jamie asks her, “How many times would you say I’ve come close to dying?” They tally it: in the abbey after Wentworth, during his fever after Culloden, when Laoghaire tried to kill him, when the snake bit him. And then, of course, there’s the matter of when he was whipped to smithereens. “You’re a hard man to kill, I think,” Claire muses. “That brings me a great deal of comfort.” Jamie tells a story about how a French fortune-teller once informed him that he had nine lives, like a cat. Amused, Claire dozes for a while.
A COMPROMISE OF SORTS | Jamie wakes her abruptly when the fisherfolk approach, carrying torches. Hiram Crombie is at the head of the pack, which Jamie sees as a good sign: Hiram won’t let them burn the house. He’s there to negotiate, but the crowd just wants to see Claire strung up. There are a lot of angry words and shaken fists, but eventually Hiram suggests that Jamie go with Claire, to see her safe to trial.
Just then, backup arrives… but it’s the Ardsmuir men, and there are far too few of them to be of any real help. Jamie whispers to Claire that they probably have to go with Brown or it’ll be a fight to the death. Just then, Tom Christie steps forward and says he’ll travel with the group to assure that “no further evil will be done.” Jamie agrees, they plan to leave in the morning, and Jamie and Claire spend possibly their last night in their home under guard.
What do you do when you’re terrified and have time to kill before the dawn? Yep, Jamie and Claire turn to each other in bed — I feel like Sam Heughan’s back prosthetic got a little bit more action this season than normal, right? — and make love. When morning arrives, they’re packed into the back of a wagon and carted off with Brown’s gang.
WHEN TOM CHRISTIE IS YOUR BEST BET, YOU’RE IN TROUBLE | During a stop on the road, Tom brings Claire some food. She’s taken aback, but Jamie tells her to eat it, because it was given with care. Richard Brown, who’s ridden ahead, suddenly returns with news: There’s no more court in Salisbury. And because Jocasta is so connected in Cross Creek, which is the next closest settlement, they’re going to push on to Wilmington — which is 200 miles away.
Throughout all of this, Tom is looking at Claire, and Jamie is looking at Tom. If the show follows the book’s lead here, this will prove important later.
There’s a lot more unpleasantness as the group continues on its way, and eventually, Jamie is let out to pee. That’s when Ian finds him and lets him know he’s nearby — with friends — and they’ll attack when Jamie gives the word. Jamie tells him to hold off for now. But not long after, Brown’s men separate Jamie and Claire during a water stop, knock Jamie out and drive off with Claire. Brown rides up to Mrs. Fraser, who is very understandably upset, and explains that he’s not doing all of this for revenge for Lionel. “My brother was a lout,” he says, calling Claire’s gang rape “cruel and unforgivable.” But she’s a murderer, so, welp, all of this ridiculousness can’t be helped!
As Claire sobs, Tom Christie rides up and says that he has Brown’s word of honor (pfft) that Jamie won’t be killed. And so he’s going to ride with her, to ensure her safety. She voiceovers that he’ll barely meet her eyes in the days that follow. “He was clearly troubled.” She suspects that he thinks/knows Jamie is dead, and just doesn’t want to tell her.
GOD BLESS YE, IAN | They arrive in Wilmington, and Claire is promptly tossed in jail. Tom slips her a sack of coins. whispers that Jamie is alive and advises her to “Trust in God. He will deliver the righteous out of danger.” He also promises to stay in town: You may trust that, too.” Sadly, this is the best news Claire has heard in DAYS.
Meanwhile, Jamie is tied to a post near the ocean. Brown’s men take turns beating on him and informing him that he’s going to be marched onto a ship that’s leaving for Scotland that day. “You’ll never see your witch of a wife again,” one vows. Another is about to hit Jamie with the butt end of his gun, but gets an arrow shot into his torso before he can land the blow. Ian and the Cherokee ride up and lay waste to Jamie’s captors, all except for the one who has his gun to Jamie’s head. As Chief Bird prepares to off the man, Jamie stops him, yelling, “Don’t! He kens where Claire is.” Ian smiles. “So do we, Uncle.” And with that established, Chief Bird kills the man. “I told you I would fight with you, Bear Killer,” he says with a smile.
A HAPPY DISCOVERY | Meanwhile, on the way to the seminary in Edenton — after a VERY CUTE moment in which little Jemmy leans into his mom’s belly and tells his baby sibling, “Hi baby. I love you a lot” — Bree realizes that the boy is itching his head. Turns out, he has lice. And when she and Roger crop his hair to get rid of the vermin, they realize he’s developed a nevus (or mole) on his scalp. Roger isn’t bothered; they’re benign, and he’s got one in roughly the same place. “They’re hereditary,” he says, then there’s a beat where both Rog and Bree realize what the appearance of Jemmy’s spot could mean. Happily, Roger decides that he wants to cut his hair, as well, and Bree does the honors.
And that’s that! Grade both the finale and the season as a whole via the polls below, then hit the comments to elaborate on your thoughts.