Outlander: First Wife

Have you ever hate-watched something? I’m a voracious consumer of pop culture so I know a lot about TV and movies that I don’t or won’t ever watch. Some of that comes from my interest in simply knowing more about a show to be involved in conversations with friends or family who watch things (Mad Men, Game of Thrones). Sometimes I’ll begin casually watching something to share time with someone (Mad Men. I hated that show but watched it every week for the last two seasons to share time with my husband when he got hooked).

Something weird happened with Outlander on Starz, though. I don’t have any close family or friends who watch the show. But one Sunday night this fall, I was sitting at home with nothing to watch and nowhere to be and decided to watch the premier of episode one of season three while I knit a shawl.

I learned three things:

  1. Jamie and Claire are INSUFFERABLE and remarkably selfish (together or apart).
  2. The scenery and costumes are beautiful.
  3. I only love the knitting and Jamie’s sister Jenny.

And then I watched it the next week. And then I went to my knitting group and regaled my friends with why everyone on the show is terrible (except Jenny and the knits). And then my friend Amanda started asking me to basically recap why it was so terrible each week. So I continue watching. And now, dear Fidgety Reader, I’ve decided to share my recaps with you.

So, spoilers ahead for Outlander season three, episode eight: First Wife.

Last week, Jamie’s print shop burned down so there was no need for him to stay in the big city (phew! How can you have sexy couple adventures while working a 9-5 job, amiright?)  Now they can stop living in an apartment in a brothel where Claire jauntily walks around in her jammies during the day and seems perplexed that someone thinks she’s a prostitute even though all the prostitutes are also walking around during the daylight hours in their jammies. Oh, and she killed a man and diagnosed a schizophrenic. Two things that I’m sure will not come back to haunt her.

This week, they head to Lallybroch. That’s Jamie’s weekend home and family homestead. But even better, it means that JENNY IS BACK! She is the long-suffering head of household making sure the farm runs well while Jamie is off doing whatever mopey thing he decides to do for 20 years. We spend some time seeing how irritated Jenny is with Jamie (rightfully so) and untrusting of Claire who just shows up out of the blue. She also drops the bombshell that JAMIE HAS REMARRIED YOU GUYS! Yeah, they broadcast that from outer space so I wasn’t surprised either.

Soon we head up to Jamie’s bedroom where Jamie decides maybe he should come clean about wife #2.  Except he doesn’t get the chance despite their several very intimate days together before his step daughters burst into the room all, “Daddy, who is this jammie-wearing woman in your room?” Doesn’t she actually wear clothes? And who is with them? Jamie’s new wife. Laoghaire. I guess she’s Claire’s mortal enemy because she wanted Claire dead 20 years ago. BTW, Jamie loves the daughters as if they were his own and promises to always be there for them. I can’t believe that would ever go wrong. These two are so lucky in everything that happens to them!

Claire is pissssssseeeeed. Because in the 20 years that they were apart, Claire decided that Jamie should be celibate despite her own marriage. If she suffered, clearly her deep love required him to suffer as well. No, “I hope you’re happy because I love you” between these two. Together or suffering seem to be the only options. Eventually, Claire and Jamie are fighting and then they start to have sex. I’m pretty sure that is their new normal. Fight and have sex. You know, the foundation of every strong and healthy relationship. Never fear, though, hero Jenny is here to literally throw water on their loud and obnoxious fighting and animal sex. It’s not like there are 20 people of all ages living in the house and trying to sleep. Take it outside you guys!

Claire runs off (in her jammies, no robe or wrap), squats by the kitchen fire and has a whiskey. Also, it turns out hero Jenny is the one who sent for Laoghaire. You know, because Jamie wouldn’t do what was right. Also, Jenny is super angry that Claire never tried to reach out to the family. In this situation, the only ones with a right to be angry are Jenny and Laoghaire. But not in Outlander world. In Outlander world Claire is the only one wronged here. Poor, poor Claire.

So the next day, Claire and Jamie talk. And Laoghaire shows up with a pistol to shoot Claire. Jamie jumps in the way. Turns out she hit him in the arm, but thankfully, over 20 years in the 1960s, Claire became a top-notch surgeon and brought all her surgery tools to the 1760s. Along with a life-saving bottle of penicillin. Apparently she sewed a bunch of secret pockets under her bustle to bring back all her life-saving tools. Amazingly, these hidden pockets of medicine and tools don’t seem to be heavy or jingle at all. Clearly Claire has never watched science fiction and has no fear of altering the future.

Eventually, they meet with lawyer Ned who says that Claire is the first wife and Laoghaire has no claim. But she wants alimony for the kids. A lot. It’s then Jamie remembers that box of ancient jewels hidden in ruins on a little island. They can pay Laoghaire off with those gems after hopping down to France to convert them to currency. He can’t swim to the island, but Young Ian can!

So the three of them head down to this island. Where Young Ian has to swim about 20 feet in icy water. Because apparently there are no boats in Scotland. Anyway, while Claire and Jamie talk about, I dunno, their feelings or dwelling on the past, Young Ian finds the small box of gems. But at that precise, exact moment, a pirate ship appears from around the tiny island.

They yell, but to no avail. Young Ian is captured by the pirates. Without any boats on Scotland, there was no way for Jamie to take chase and Young Ian is lost to the pirates. Whatever shall we do? Looking on the sailing ship broodingly seems to be the only solid option for Claire and Jamie.

And that’s where we’re left until next week.

This Week’s Knits

I am disappointed by the lack of knits in the 1760s. It looked like there were some sleeves that may have been woven, but as for knitting, we have these two items:

That’s it for this week. Join me next week as I knit and watch Jamie and Claire head to the Caribbean where there are pirates and some connection to the weirdly introduced skeleton from the 1960s earlier in the season. Because this show takes obvious foreshadowing to the next level.

Before you send me hate mail, let me preemptively answer some questions. Yes, I know there are books and I have no intention to ever read them. Yes, the actors have great chemistry, but I STILL think the characters are selfish and insufferable. No, I haven’t watched the first two seasons and no, I don’t think it will make me like this show any more than I do. Yes, I really don’t like this show. Except for hero Jenny.

All images ©2017 Starz Entertainment LLC. I lay no claim to any of them.

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