Droughtlander Re-Watch: EP102 ("Castle Leoch")
*** SPOILER WARNING! ***
If you haven't watched all of OUTLANDER Seasons 1 and 2, there are SPOILERS in this post. Read at your own risk.
As they arrive at the castle, it's easy to pick out Murtagh, Rupert, and Angus. But I remember very well how hard it was to tell the clansmen apart, on the first few viewings.
Look at Murtagh in that first scene, and think about how he looked in the Paris scenes in Season 2, all cleaned up with his hair combed and his beard neatly trimmed. Looking at him here, it's almost hard to believe it's the same character. <g>
The scene with Jamie and Claire is very much as I always imagined from the book. But after Episode 106 ("The Garrison Commander"), it's impossible to see the scars on Jamie's back without remembering those horrific scenes of the flogging.
Jamie shows a little more humor here than in the book. ("They were holding me prisoner.")
Jenny looks very young in the flashback scene -- more so than I remembered. That whole scene was very well done. I had forgotten the bit with BJR rubbing his thumb over Jenny's face. Ewwww! <shudder>
When Jamie takes Claire into his arms for the first time and holds her as she weeps for Frank, I couldn't help remembering that this is the point where Jamie said much later that he fell in love with her. Awwww!
The dressing scene with Mrs. Fitz is just priceless, and very funny! My favorite part is the bit where Mrs. Fitz snatches the cup of broth out of Claire's hands before she's had more than a couple of sips. <g>
I hadn't realized before that the letter with "1743" on it was lying in plain sight on the desk.
The sight of Colum's legs is shocking, but very much as I'd imagined from the book. The use of CGI here is very clever.
"Is there ever a good reason for rape, Master MacKenzie?" Great line! I had forgotten about that.
"It was all second-hand knowledge, acquired from books, museums, paintings" -- and old Scottish songs, like "Loch Lomond"? <g> Look here for my thoughts on that from my first viewing of the episode in 2014.
When Claire walks into the Great Hall, my impression is that she's showing a lot more cleavage than strictly necessary. <g> Another reminder of her "other-ness". It makes her look like a bit of a slut, by 18th-century standards, IMHO.
Colum's interrogation is very effective, no doubt about it. Claire really is a very bad liar, and she's drinking quite a lot, even before the Rhenish makes its appearance.
And then Hamish shows up, and she puts her foot in it, in no uncertain terms! Oops. <g>
I love the thatched roofs on the little buildings Claire passes on the way to the stables.
"She's just a girl with spirit, is all. That's always a good thing." I love that line, and the way Jamie looks at her.
The whole conversation in the stable is taken almost word-for-word from the book. That's a pleasure to see.
"Try not to get flogged or stabbed today."
"No promises, Sassenach."
I like that very much. <g>
The scene with Claire and Rupert is terrific, a great addition. Listening to Rupert describe Angus, I can't help thinking of so many of the scenes to come involving Angus, up to and including the way he died. It's hard to remember that at this point in the story, he's just one of the clansmen in the background, and we don't know him at all yet.
I liked the scene between Claire and Dougal very much, too. On re-watching, this seems like foreshadowing of several similar confrontations to come. (At St. Ninian's Spring in Episode 106, for example.)
Claire's introduction to Geillis is suitably mysterious. "I know who you are, Claire" -- indeed, she may well know a lot more about Claire than Claire knows about her! (Thinking about the notebook where she kept notes about mysterious occurrences near stone circles, including Claire's own disappearance.)
I had forgotten how much Gaelic is in this episode, particularly throughout the scene in the Hall.
Right before Jamie raises his voice to address Colum and the rest of the people in the Hall, you can see him and Murtagh talking quietly, while the crowd's attention is focused on Laoghaire. Murtagh is definitely not happy -- from his body language alone, you can tell that he knows what Jamie is about to do, and he doesn't like it, but he can't stop him. I totally missed that in previous viewings of this episode.
Jamie is so young here, young and cocky and fearless -- and evidently enjoying himself. <g> Very much as I've always imagined from the book.
I like the way Jamie grins at Rupert after the first blow, as if to say, "Is that all you've got?"
And then Rupert hits him very hard in the injured shoulder, and I gasped. Owwwww! "That's not fair!" I thought, and then I heard the much older Jamie's voice in my head, saying, "Dirty fighting is the only kind there is."
Claire seems much too willing to leave Laoghaire alone with Jamie. "I think someone would like to speak with you." On the other hand, she thinks she's leaving forever, and she has no idea that Jamie is falling in love with her.
The scene with Colum and Claire is terrific! Claire really underestimated him.
"You'll remain here, as my guest."
"You mean as your prisoner, don't you?"
"Only if you try to leave."
What a chilling, and subtly terrifying, way to end the episode! I really felt sorry for Claire at the end, more alone now than she's been since she came through the stones.
Please come back next week for my reactions to Episode 103, "The Way Out".