Episode 707: "A Practical Guide for Time-Travelers" (SPOILERS!)

William in Outlander Episode 707

Here are my reactions to Episode 707 of the OUTLANDER TV series, titled "A Practical Guide for Time-Travelers".


There are SPOILERS below! If you don't want to know yet, stop reading now.









The episode opens in the Continental Army camp at Bemis Heights, NY, in September 1777. Claire is writing to Brianna. I liked the portable lap desk she's using, similar to the one shown here. (Lord John used one like it in the books.) Claire tells Bree about her encounter with William at Ticonderoga in Episode 706.

"I miss you, darling," Claire writes, and the scene shifts to Bree, in the study at Lallybroch in 1980, reading this letter.

Suddenly Roger calls urgently to Bree. She finds him with a man she doesn't recognize, whom Roger introduces as William Buccleigh MacKenzie, aka "Buck". Son of Dougal MacKenzie and Geillis Duncan, Roger's five-times great-grandfather, and the man who was responsible for getting Roger hanged at Alamance in Season 5.

The opening credits have a melancholy feel to them this week, in view of the news that Sinéad O'Connor has died at the age of 56. Whatever you think of her rendition of the OUTLANDER theme song, it's sad that she died so young.

The "title card" for this episode shows Jem's teacher pinning a "Tufty Club" button to his woolen scarf. Nice attention to detail there, and definitely foreshadowing for what happens near the end of this episode!

How did Buck come to be there?? In the next scene, Buck begins telling his story to Bree and Roger. Most of what he says is based on ECHO chapter 72, "The Feast of All Saints". After Alamance, he tells them, he and his wife Morag and their young son went back to Scotland, where he hoped to find work.

"We were nearing Inverness, when we heard a strange noise, like a hive of bees. I thought I'd lose my mind from it. 'Twas as though it was coming from my bones. 'Twas at Craigh na Dun."

So Buck went through the stones, and found himself in 1980. Eventually, he found his way to Lallybroch, hoping that Roger could explain what had happened to him. But he kept his distance, wary of meeting Roger because of what had happened at Alamance.

I think Diarmaid Murtagh is doing a wonderful job as Buck! He's more or less channeling Book Buck in this episode, IMHO, to the point where I think he will quickly replace the image and voice I've had in my head all these years. There's something about his soft-spoken manner that is making me feel sympathy for him, despite the fact that I still have not forgiven him for getting Roger hanged.

Meanwhile, back in 1777, we're in the British Army camp near Saratoga. William and another young officer are listening to the senior officers -- General Burgoyne, Brigadier General Simon Fraser, and General Riedesel (in command of the Hessian troops) -- discussing the current military situation. Burgoyne seems extremely confident that the British will prevail.

An aide arrives with an important message for Burgoyne, who orders all nonessential personnel out of the tent. William grabs an apple from a bowl on the table on his way out.

William shows off a bit of swordsmanship for his friend Sandy, tossing the apple in the air and neatly slicing it in half with his sword. (So he's apparently as good with a sword as both Jamie and Lord John.) They're just having a bit of fun, joking and indulging in gossip, when Captain Richardson suddenly appears, calling William away to meet with him in private.

William was with Sandy Lindsay [also known as Balcarres, after the name of his estate in England], talking about the best way to cook a turkey--one of Lindsay’s scouts having just brought him one—when the letter arrived. It was likely William’s imagination that a dreadful silence fell upon the camp, the earth shook, and the veil of the temple was rent in twain. But it was very shortly apparent that something had happened, nonetheless.

There was a definite change in the air, something amiss in the rhythms of speech and movement among the men surrounding them. Balcarres felt it, too, and stopped in his examination of the turkey’s outspread wing, looking at William with eyebrows raised.

“What?” said William.

“I don’t know, but it isn’t good.”

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 59, "Battle of Bennington". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

The news for William personally is not good, either. Richardson intends to send him to New York City to deliver dispatches to General Howe. "General Burgoyne intends an attack in three days' time. You will miss it."

It's clear from the look on his face that the last thing William wants is yet another mission as a messenger, especially when he's about to have his first taste of actual combat -- and also in light of what happened the last time Richardson sent him on a mission, into the Great Dismal. How is he going to get out of this?

Meanwhile, at Lallybroch, Buck is wolfing down peanut butter and jelly sandwiches while Bree and Roger continue to coax the story out of him. Most of the dialogue in this scene comes from the book, and this scene plays out more or less exactly as I have always envisioned it. I love the way Bree is silent as she serves sandwiches and coffee, glaring at Buck with suspicion.

“Morag is my five--or maybe only four--times great-grandmother,” Roger said evenly. He fixed Buccleigh with a stare equal to the other man’s. “And since you asked me who ye are--you’re my grandda. Five or six times back. My son’s named Jeremiah after my da, who was named for his grandda--who was named for your son. I think,” he added. “I might be missing one or two Jeremiahs along the way.”

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 72, "The Feast of All Saints". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

It's a lot to take in at once, and Buck just stares at him. "We're family," Roger adds, driving the point home. I liked that addition.

Roger finds his old family tree, showing William Buccleigh MacKenzie's dates of birth and death. Born 1744, died 1778. I was startled to see that, because it's a change from the books. Buck's date of death is given as 1782 in DRAGONFLY IN AMBER:

Roger bent over the chart, then looked up, moss-green eyes thoughtful. “This one? William Buccleigh MacKenzie, born 1744, of William John MacKenzie and Sarah Innes. Died 1782.”

(From DRAGONFLY IN AMBER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 47, "Loose Ends". Copyright © 1992 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

I think they changed it because a difference of 202 years (from 1778 to 1980) is consistent with what we've seen in the past, so it's easier for the audience to grasp.

Suddenly they hear the sound of a car coming up the driveway. It's Rob Cameron, driving a beat-up old truck. Looking at it, I can't believe it's that filthy, if only because it rains so much in Scotland. Doesn't he ever take it out when it's raining? <g> Compared to the MacKenzies' shiny red car, it really stands out, and not in a good way.

"I didn't think he'd just show up," Roger says. "Who doesn't call first?" Awkward question, coming from Roger, since he has done it himself! Remember the time he showed up at Claire and Bree's house in Boston at Christmas (Episode 305, "Freedom & Whisky") without so much as a phone call to let them know he was coming? <g>

Roger leaves Buck in the priest-hole with a plate of sandwiches. "Not a sound!" he warns him, and shuts the door, but we don't hear the sound of a latch turning.

Rob Cameron is smiling and friendly as always, offering Roger a bottle of wine. Roger tries to think of a reason to avoid inviting him inside, but eventually gives in.

"It's Bree's turn [to cook] tonight. Just pretend you like it, that's what I do."

That took me aback a little. What kind of way is that to talk about your wife??

Roger and Rob go into the study, where Roger shows him his collection of old hymnals. Then Roger leaves him alone in the study (!) while he goes to check on Bree. Big mistake! At this point I started yelling at him, mentally at least: "DON'T leave him alone in there, you idiot! With the big box in plain view and not locked in any way? That's just asking for trouble, and you'll be sorry!!" Why couldn't Roger have stuffed Jemmy's box in a closet or something, where it wouldn't be likely to be disturbed?

Jem comes home from school, excited to show off his new "Tufty Club" badge, pinned to his woolen scarf, just as we saw in the title card at the beginning of this episode. You may recall Roger explaining "Tufty Fluffytail" to Bree in Episode 502, "Between Two Fires."

According to this site,
Tufty - full name Tufty Fluffytail - had his origins in 1953, created by the late Elsie Miles. In 1961, the Tufty Club was set up as a network of local groups - which at its peak had nearly 25,000 branches throughout the country. Parents would join the Tufty Club on their children's behalf, and children would proudly wear badges showing that they were members. By the early 1970s, an estimated 2m children had been members, and the movement continued well into the 1980s.

I liked this. It makes sense to me that Jem is following in his da's footsteps here.

Over dinner, the MacKenzies and Rob Cameron seem to be getting along very well, laughing and having a good time. Bree says to Rob, "Oh, and it is damn near impossible to read your power field notes. Are you writing on the same paper bag you bring your lunch to work in?" This is based on a bit from earlier in the book:

She was trying to decipher Rob Cameron’s notes regarding the power feed from the second turbine at Loch Errochty, which appeared to have been written with grease pencil on the remains of the bag that had held his lunch, when she became aware of sounds in the laird’s study across the hall.

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 34, "Psalms, 30". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

Rob Cameron is obviously making an effort to be friendly to Jem, telling him about the equipment in the dam, including....

"The tunnels! Will you take me to see them, Mama? Please?"
"Oh, you know, honey, the tunnels are not best suited for children."

I'm glad Jem is paying attention to any discussion of those tunnels!

As the meal winds down, Roger and Bree exchange glances. Time to get Cameron out of the house. But he doesn't take the hint, instead asking for another dram of whisky. How rude! I really wanted Roger to tell him no.

In the next scene, we're back in the Continental Army camp, as preparations go forward for the coming battle. This scene between Jamie and Claire is really terrific, and comes straight from the book:

“Ye need spectacles, don’t ye?” he said. “I hadna realized.”

“Nonsense!” I said, though my heart gave a small jump. “I see perfectly well.”

“Oh, aye?” He moved beside me and took the book out of my hand. Opening it to the middle, he held it in front of me. “Read that.”

I leaned backward, and he advanced in front of me.

“Stop that!” I said. “How do you expect me to read anything that close?”

“Stand still, then,” he said, and moved the book away from my face. “Can ye see the letters clear yet?”

“No,” I said crossly. “Farther. Farther. No, bloody farther!”

And at last was obliged to admit that I could not bring the letters into focus at a distance of nearer than about eighteen inches.

“Well, it’s very small type!” I said, flustered and discomfited. I had, of course, been aware that my eyesight was not so keen as it once had been, but to be so rudely confronted with the evidence that I was, if not blind as a bat, definitely in competition with moles in the farsight sweepstakes was a trifle upsetting.

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 61, "No Better Companion Than the Rifle". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

I have always loved this scene (I think it's hilarious), but I have come to understand it better now that I'm in my late fifties. As my sister commented recently, "Everybody has something." Once you reach a certain age, she meant. And she's right. If it's not worsening eyesight, it's wonky knees, or hearing problems, or any number of other parts of your body that don't work as well as they used to. Claire is almost 61 at this point (September 1777); no wonder she's starting to experience these sorts of issues.

"You'll come back to me," Claire says. "You always do. And if you don't, I'll come looking for you." This line isn't in the book, but it gives me a little shiver, knowing what's coming. Foreshadowing!!

Meanwhile, in the British army camp, William and his friend Sandy are eating dinner when General Simon Fraser suddenly appears. He appears just to be wandering around, checking on the men. He says his spirits are lifted just by being near his men, and then wanders away, talking about glory.

This whole sequence is not in the book, and I didn't care for it. I thought William came on too forcefully, for a junior officer speaking to a Brigadier General, especially when he says, "I am not an errand boy!" He sounded angry, and I was surprised the general didn't reprimand him for it. The fact that William immediately got what he wanted only seemed to make the general look weaker, in my opinion, willing to be pushed around by this young wet-behind-the-ears lieutenant who's never even seen combat.

On the bright side, Richardson didn't get what he wanted, and that can only be a good thing.

Back at Lallybroch, Rob is finally getting ready to leave, but he pauses to tell Roger and Bree about his ex-wife, a French girl with whom he had a child. "Her family has money, and I don't, and it turns out the more expensive lawyer wins." This line isn't in the book, but I think it's significant, giving him another motive for what happens later. Rob needs money!

Rob invites Jem to go to the movies that Friday with him and Bobby, and to stay overnight at Bobby's house. Bree agrees, and Rob departs at long last. Roger and Bree go immediately to the priest-hole, only to find that Buck isn't there! Roger admits that he diidn't lock the door -- not that it would have made much difference, as we saw earlier in the season that the priest-hole doesn't actually have a proper lock, just a flimsy latch.

Eventually they find Buck in the caravan (trailer), watching TV with Jem and Mandy. They are watching an unidentified sci-fi TV show. 

UPDATE 8/2/2023 5:00 pm:
I thought at first that they were watching BUCK ROGERS IN THE 25th CENTURY, the American series starring Gil Gerard, but I have heard from a number of people (mostly in the UK) since the episode aired who say that the TV show they're watching is actually BLAKE'S 7, a British program that ran from 1978-81.

Jem tells Buck the show is about an astronaut named Blake who lives 500 years in the future. OK, so there are similarities between this show and BUCK ROGERS. But if they are actually watching BLAKE'S 7, not BUCK ROGERS, why is Mandy babbling about "You're Buck, Daddy's Roger"? The line is clever if she's watching BUCK ROGERS (smart of her to catch the similarity in names at her age!) but if they're watching BLAKE'S 7, it seems like a total non-sequitur.

It feels to me as though they may have hastily substituted BLAKE'S 7 for BUCK ROGERS due to copyright concerns or something, and they didn't bother to change Mandy's line.

I was entertained to see that Buck (the former lawyer) had enough Latin to understand "astronaut" as "star traveler". I also liked the way Mandy smiled when she said, "He's not really that scary, Mummy." She's very cute, and I'm glad they gave her more to do in this episode. (More on that later.)

Roger is struggling with the change in Buck since he first knew him years ago. "The man I met is not the man I knew at Alamance. He's...Cousin Buck."

This is something that took me a while to understand, when I first read ECHO. I was so accustomed to thinking of William Buccleigh MacKenzie as a villain -- he got Roger hanged, after all, a far more devastating and life-changing experience in the books than in the show -- that it took some time for me to accept that he has some good qualities, too. We see the same thing here. Buck is turning into a more well-rounded, more appealing character right in front of our eyes, and that takes some getting used to.

"So you've already forgiven him?"
"Yes. I did. Right after I beat him into the ground."

Maybe. I don't think it's that simple. For one thing, as Jamie has observed in the books more than once, forgiveness takes constant practice, over a period of time. For another, in the book, Roger's feelings about Buck are much more complex:

In his own case, there was a solid substratum of anger under the wariness, and a good bit of confusion, too. He had, from sheer necessity as well as religious conviction, forgiven William Buccleigh for his role in the hanging that had taken his voice. After all, the man had not tried to kill him personally and couldn’t have known what would happen.

But it was a damned sight easier to forgive somebody you knew had been dead for two hundred years than it was to maintain that forgiveness with the bastard living under your nose, eating your food, and being charming to your wife and children.

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 85, "Son of a Witch". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

The next day, Bree takes Buck to work with her at the hydroelectric dam. He's cleaned up nicely and he looks a lot more respectable than he did before. Most of the dialogue in this scene comes from ECHO chapter 72, "The Feast of All Saints".

Watching Buck come to the conclusion that everyone he knew, everything he knew, is gone, I was struck by the thought: He's an "outlander" in this time, every bit as much as Claire was when she first arrived in 1743. It's a sad thought.

Just like the ring that Claire brought back when she returned in 1948, the gemstone in Buck's ring was destroyed by the passage through the stones. If he's going to go back, he'll need another gemstone.

Rob Cameron approaches and is introduced to Buck, who refuses to shake his hand. So he dislikes Rob on sight -- another point in his favor. As he says, "I'm no a fool." I suppose he heard enough of Rob from snatches of conversation the other night to get a reasonably good impression of the man. He clearly doesn't like it when Rob casually puts a hand on Bree's arm.

Later, Roger finds Buck in the caravan, looking at Jem's toy airplane. Just like Jamie in Episode 112, "Lallybroch", listening to Claire's stories, he's fascinated by the idea of flying.

"That Cameron, he's trouble. He's got a hot eye for your wife." Interesting that he's saying this to Roger directly. In the book he said it to Bree.

With some reluctance, Roger tells Buck that the family tree lists his year of death as 1778. So either he won't make it back, or he will die soon after returning to the past.

The scene between Roger and Bree that follows is not in the book. I was entertained to hear Phil Collins' "In the Air Tonight" in the background. Very appropriate. It was a big hit about this time, when I was in high school.

"Roger MacKenzie, are you feeling a wee bit territorial?" - Good line!

I thought the sex scene was well done, a good example of how such a scene can be shown with the couple still partly under the covers. I wonder if that was partly due to the influence of the show's new intimacy coordinator? At any rate, I thought it was tender and passionate. Under these conditions, with Jamie and Claire living in army camps with very little privacy, it makes sense to shift the focus of sex scenes to Bree and Roger, at least temporarily.

The next scene shifts abruptly to the woods near the Continental Army camp. Young Ian has captured a British deserter. Immediately, we see both armies intensifying their preparations for battle. I loved the look on Jamie's face just before he left Claire. He looks younger, somehow, much closer to my mental image of Jamie. Ready for battle, not looking forward to it by any means, but determined to do what must be done, whatever the cost. He looks good in that white rifleman's uniform, too!

Claire, on the other hand, looks sad and very worried, unable to conceal her fear for Jamie.

In the next scene, William prepares to take his men into battle. I really liked seeing the way the whole army moved in unison, in disciplined fashion, to fix bayonets. This is clearly a professional army, in contrast to the Continentals. I once heard a re-enactor at a historic site compare the British Army of the period to today's 82nd Airborne -- highly trained, disciplined, and terrifying when they're bearing down on you! Looking at those ranks of red-coated soldiers, I can believe it!

At William's side, his friend Sandy is still making small talk. "You have an eye for someone," he says. "What's her name?"

And just at that moment, Sandy collapses, hit in the head by enemy fire that William never saw coming. It's a very shocking, unforgettable image, based on this bit from the book:

“What do you think--” [William] said, turning to Gruenwald, and was startled to find the ober-leftenant staring at him blank-faced, his jaw hanging open. The man’s hand loosened and fell to his side, and the mitred helmet fell and rolled away in the dust. William blinked and saw a thick worm of red snake its way slowly down from under Gruenwald’s dark hair.

Gruenwald sat down quite suddenly and fell backward in the road, his face gone a muddy white.

“Sh!t!” said William, and jerked suddenly to an awareness of what had just happened. “Ambush!” he bellowed at the top of his lungs. “Das ist ein Überfall!!”

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 59, "Battle of Bennington". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

William is in a state of shock for some time after his friend is killed, unable to process what just happened. Even with cannons firing all around him, officers bellowing orders, and everyone else in the army engaged in the battle, William stays crouched over his friend's body for what seems like a very long time. Much too long, if you ask me, because it's only when General Fraser notices him and shouts at him -- "Lord Ellesmere, to your men!" -- that Wiliam belatedly recalls his duty.

To be fair, I did like the way he charged forward at that point, waving his sword in the air. It reminded me very much of Jamie, charging across the field at Culloden. I just thought he should have recovered a little sooner. Having to be reminded to pay attention to the men under his command in the middle of a battle (by a Brigadier General, no less!) is not a good look, to put it mildly. I hope he doesn't get in trouble for that.

I liked the way they filmed the scene after that, where it turned into hand-to-hand combat, with so much going on that you can't take it in all at once. That must have been very complicated to film, but I think it was done well.

Meanwhile, back at Lallybroch, Roger wakes in the middle of the night, unable to sleep. He sees that the box with the letters in it has a bit of paper sticking out from the lid. Someone has been looking in the box! Before he can investigate, he hears Mandy screaming.

Rushing into Mandy's room, he finds Bree trying to comfort her. The scene unfolds here very much as in the book, and I thought the little girl who plays Mandy did a terrific job!

He made it to Amanda’s room a half step before Brianna and scooped the child out of her bed, cradling her against his pounding heart.

“Jemmy, Jemmy!” she sobbed. “He’s gone, he’s gone. He’s GONE!!” This last was shrieked as she stiffened in Roger’s arms, digging her feet hard into his belly.

"Hey, hey,” he soothed,trying to rearrange her and pet her into calm.“It’s okay, Jemmy’s fine. He’s fine, he’s only gone to visit Bobby overnight. He’ll be home tomorrow.”

“He’s GONE!” She squirmed like an eel, not trying to get away but merely possessed by a paroxysm of frantic grief. “He’s not here, he’s not here!”

"Aye, like I said, he’s at Bobby’s house, he--”

“Not here,” she said urgently, and thumped the palm of her hand repeatedly on the top of her head. “Not here wif me!”

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 85, "Son of a Witch". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

The whole sequence was played really well. My only (small) quibble is when Bree kneels down on the floor to dial the phone. It seems clear that she only did that to keep Mandy's small body in the frame of the shot, but honestly, what adult makes a phone call (especially in an emergency) by getting down on her knees?? It threw me briefly out of the scene.

I liked the way both Roger and Bree dealt with the emergency. Not panicking, but clearly distraught, and thinking very fast. Roger and Buck drive off immediately toward Craigh na Dun in pursuit of Rob Cameron. They manage to convey the exact feelings I always have in reading this part of the book:

[Roger] was trying to pray but managing nothing but a terror-stricken, incoherent Lord, please! He wished Bree was with him, but they couldn’t have brought Mandy anywhere near the rocks, and if they should be in time to catch Cameron ... if Cameron was even here ... Buccleigh would help him, he was fairly sure of that.

The back of his mind harbored a forlorn hope that there was some misunderstanding, that Cameron had mistaken the night and, realizing it, was bringing Jem back home, even as Roger and his bloody five times greatgrandfather tore over a rocky moor in the dark, headed straight for the most terrible thing either of them knew.

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 85, "Son of a Witch". Copyright © 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

And then the show writers came up with something I totally did not expect. Buck finds Jem's scarf, with the "Tufty Club" pin still attached. Instantly I recalled Frank, in Season 1, finding Claire's shawl, left behind at Craigh na Dun in precisely similar fashion. It's a terrifying image, even though I know what happens next. And a very convincing bit of evidence. So maybe he did go through the stones with Rob Cameron after all...?

The next scene switches to William, in the aftermath of the battle. He's supervising a burial detail. The men are doing only the bare minimum, quickly growing tired of digging in the mud. William turns on them, furious.

"These men died bravely, and I will not see them buried in shallow graves only to be pulled out and devoured in the night!" Then he takes off his jacket and grabs a shovel. "We dig deeper!"

As they work, we see Brigadier General Fraser looking on with approval.

The next scene is not in the book, but I thought it was very good. General Burgoyne declares that the British are victorious, but it doesn't feel like a victory to William. General Fraser seems to sense his mood, coming to sit nearby.

"We send forth men to battle but no such men return. So says Aeschylus." He leans over to say quietly to William, "You're a different man now."

I see what he means. Battle changes everyone who participates in it. (And not only the combatants! Think of Roger at the Battle of Savannah in BEES.) William definitely seems changed from the young man we saw at the start of the season, eager to go to war. ("Sometimes the only way to settle things is with iron and blood," he said in Episode 702.) I really like the way Wiliiam's character has developed over the course of the season.

The final shot of the episode is a view of the battlefield, strewn with dead soldiers. And then we see Jamie, lying motionless on the ground. Unconscious or dead? And with that, the episode ends.

I hope you enjoyed this recap. Look here for my recaps of all of the OUTLANDER episodes. Please note, there will NOT be a new episode of OUTLANDER next week (details HERE), but I hope you'll come back in two weeks for my recap of Episode 708.

Looking for a place to discuss All Things OUTLANDER? Check out TheLitForum.com, formerly the Compuserve Books and Writers Community. You have to sign up in order to read or post on the forum, but it's free. For more about the forum, look here.


Anonymous said...

Love to read your summaries! Great attention to detail, thank you.

Anonymous said...

I found the entire story with Rob Cameron very weak..., sorry to say. What man can read a notebook with something so fantastic like time travelling and to believe all thing. And than, decides to search more and to kidnap a child, after 2-5 days based on reading 4 letters. Very unlikely to happen. Also the coming of Buck through the stones....he made a trip to America, than comes back as if it is XX-th century travelling and on his way to Iverness, hears a sound and go back to the stones. If I recall, the stones were a litlle bit far from the city, road etc...how he ends up so close...why only him, if his son also is a time traveller? Very weak explanation also related to Roger...he really though is the same Roger that he hanged??

Karen Henry said...

Have you read AN ECHO IN THE BONE (Book 7)? The whole storyline involving Rob Cameron is basically straight from the book. If you don't find it plausible, that's up to you, but it's not the show's fault. They're being very faithful to the book's version of events this season.


Rowena said...

I agree completely about how long William remained transfixed after Sandy was shot - not realistic and slowed the momentum of the scene. Also, are they bringing forward the incident where Jamie came close to death in "Bees" and Claire refused to accept it?
In general enjoyingbthis season a lot, but I think it's a wee bit of a shame that they've chopped out the whole backstory about Lord John's nephews, and also Denny's relationship with LJ's niece - I totally get that they have to chop a heap out but that was quite important (I thought) in William's character arc.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Karen, Jem, Mandy and Buck are not watching Buck Rogers. They're watching Blake's Seven with Paul Darrow.

CT said...

Karen: One of the ladies in my weekly Outlander zoom discussion group (both books and show) says the SyFy show that the children are watching is not Buck Rogers. It is a UK program called Blakes 7 that ran on BBC1 fromm 1978 -1981. Another point I agree about the oddness of Bree and Mandy when she is making the telephone call. What also strikes me as odd is that she knows the phone number to call without having to look it up.

Renee M said...

Karen, I always look forward to reading your commentary on each episode and appreciate your thoughtfulness in comparing DG's wonderful novels with the Starz series. Thank you for your efforts!

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen, Love your recaps!!
Just want to tell you that on the Oulandish obvservations Facebook page there is someone posing as Sam Heughan who is commenting on posts and asking people to message him. He claims it is "his official account"
Just FYI

Thanks, Mo

Karen Henry said...


Thanks for the heads up! I took care of it. I don't understand why people impersonate Sam on FB like that, but it's certainly not the first time that's happened on my OO FB page.


Seeshaw said...

Hi Karen - I really enjoy your recaps but I wanted to point out that Frank didn’t find Claire’s shawl at the stones. It came with her when she traveled through and she left it on the ground. When Claire returned to the stones (with Frank on the other side of time) she noticed it crumpled at the base of the big stone, just before the Redcoats grabbed her.

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