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Do No Harm – Outlander Episode 402

November 14, 2018
Post by Contributing Author, Susan Jackson

Whew. I was relieved when Outlander episode 402 was over. I felt heavy-hearted, and had to sit quietly for a while after it was over. One thing I can say is that this show has never been one to keep the awful harshness of 18th century life stuff out of front and center, but that’s what I love about this series. So, let’s dive in to my recap as well as a few thoughts of Do No Harm.

Listening to Jamie and Claire discuss Bonnet and his crew’s robbery is bringing back the “old” Jamie for me–he wants to protect all who are in his care, as he was brought up to do. I had thought he’d be a bit more beat-up looking, but realized that most of his abuse was taking in those amazing rock-hard abs–oh, wait–I can’t get those My Peak Challenge work-out Instagram pics that Sam posts so often out of my mind sometimes–sorry for the digression! But even though Jamie is feeling like letting Bonnet go is his “cross to bear,” it helps us see that Jamie is still a laird in his heart and mind.

Watching the scene of the boat floating upriver and into view of River Run almost took my breath–it was a beautiful sight! It was almost as how I’d pictured it, minus the Spanish moss dripping from the trees, but I was amazed at how “Southern” the house and land looked! Living in North Carolina and near a historic plantation site, I was afraid that they wouldn’t get this right, but this was one location I approve of.

Jamie seemed a little boy as he greeted his aunt, and then had to remember he had a wife to introduce, which I thought was adorable. Jocasta, played by Maria Doyle Kennedy, was much warmer than I remember from the books, and let on early enough that her eyesight had failed over the years. TV Jocasta is very proud of her plantation, almost to the point of bragging, as we hear during the scene when she is overseeing Claire’s fitting.

This is where I get disheartened by the portrayal of Claire so far. I feel like the producers/writers/directors are really trying to make the audience aware that Claire is opposed to slavery, and she speaks out every chance she gets, but in a bossy, pushy way, even to Jocasta, who is their hostess. Yes, Claire is outspoken and a woman of her time, but she knows when to be that 20th century woman while living in the 18th, as well as when not to be. I feel like it’s being overdone. I just haven’t felt any of Claire’s warmth or sense of humor so far–and I know it’s only the second episode of the season, but still.

During the fitting scene, where Phaedre (Natalie Simpson) is making sure Jocasta’s dress fits Claire perfectly, I was thrown by Phaedre’s accent. Trivial, I know, but I was surprised she was speaking with a slight Scots accent. Someone later reminded me that Phaedre was born at River Run, and Jocasta took her in for a house slave (a matter to be discussed later, I’m sure), was reared in the house, and so, learned to speak like Jocasta and Hector. Ulysses’ lack of any accent at all surprised me as well, and again I was reminded that Ulysses was born free, but sold into slavery after the death of his mother. He was bought by a schoolmaster, who educated him, and at the age of twenty, was bought by Hector Cameron, and brought to River Run. Colin McFarlane makes an absolutely amazing Ulysses–I can’t wait to see more of him!

The big news at the dinner party was Jocasta’s decision to make Jamie her heir, and that she is making him her representative for all things River Run. We are soon introduced to Farquard Campbell, the local justice of the peace who schools Jamie on what would happen to freed slaves, if Jamie chose to do so as the new master of River Run, and how it has to be done lawfully. Jamie soon lets Claire know that he’s ready to ditch the plantation, take Governor Tryon up on his offer and head for the hills, where they can live as they please, without slaves. (Like Governor Tryon, Farquard Campbell was an actual figure in North Carolina’s history, and you can read a little about him here.

And then we come to the incident at Jocasta’s sawmill in the woods, where Jocasta’s slaves are working under the watchful eye of her overseer, Byrnes. Rufus had been hit with Byrnes’ lash, and Rufus retaliated by cutting off the overseer’s ear with an ax. By the time Jamie, Claire and Campbell arrive at the mill, Rufus is being hoisted in the air by a sawmill hook, as Byrnes decided to take the matter of the law in his own hands. It was enough of a shock to read this part of Drums of Autumn, and even more so to see it on screen. Jamie forces Byrnes at gunpoint to let Rufus down so Claire can see to his wounds. She, in her typical emotion-driven way, runs to Rufus’ aid almost immediately. Rufus is brought back to the main house, a place he’s never been, and Claire removes the hook, sutures the wound, and offers comfort to him by asking him about his family, (reminiscent of the boar-hunting scene with Geordie in season 1).

Claire receives a stern talking-to from Ulysses that she may not have done the right thing by saving Rufus, and may be risking the well-being all of the slaves at River Run. She definitely needed this jolt into the ways of Colonial laws and slave-owning culture, but she wasn’t convinced. Jamie’s action of handling the situation as he did angers other overseers and slave owners in the area, and the angry mob shows up at River Run, demanding Rufus be released to them so they may hang him, as is the law according to the law of bloodshed. Jocasta, in true blood-is-thicker-than-water fashion, blames Claire’s “foolish ways.” Jamie suggests that Claire ease Rufus’ suffering by giving him something before he has to be released to the mob. Jamie’s prayer by Rufus’ bedside was so moving–I have missed Jamie’s faith in the television series. In the books, it’s part of what makes Jamie Fraser Jamie Fraser to me. Hopefully they’ll pull more of that aspect of him into the show as time goes on.

Eventually, Jamie bravely carries a dead Rufus to the steps of the plantation house, a noose is placed around his neck, and the delirious mob drags him to the nearest tree, and hangs him there, for all of those at River Run to see.

In spite of the necessary plot changes, and what I can only describe as Claire’s haughtiness in this episode, I liked it–I can’t say that I “enjoyed” it. It was expertly acted–Jerome Holder, the actor who portrayed Rufus, was absolutely amazing, and moved me to tears as he spoke of fishing in the river at night, and dreaming of seeing his sister once more. The sets, the costumes–everything–is so well thought out, just like Diana Gabaldon’s research and writing. I am almost never not in awe of what I see on screen.

Thankfully, we have the comic relief in this episode of Rollo’s meeting with a skunk and meeting John Quincy Myers (Kyle Rees)–hernia-free, apparently. 🙂 His character, in book and on the show, reminds me of Mr. Edwards in the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder–a bit of a wild man, unmarried, and making a living in the frontier that is Colonial North Carolina. I hope we see a lot more of him–he makes me miss Angus and Rupert even more!

As darkly as the first two episodes have ended, I can only hope we will be able to see some happiness in episode three. The Frasers have been through so much already, and so have the viewers–I’m ready for some good times to come to them in North Carolina.Susan Jackson is a mother of four who lives in coastal North Carolina, and is an avid Outlander fan.  Besides reading, she loves cooking and baking, and music.  She is a thyroid cancer survivor and has worked in education most of her life. She hopes to one day blog about her thyroid cancer journey. She is a contributing author for Outlander North Carolina and, among other articles, has previously written about the infamous Stede Bonnet in Will The Real Stephen Bonnet Please Stand Up? 

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America The Beautiful

November 9, 2018
Post by Contributing Author, Tara Heller

We made it! Well actually, the Frasers made it to North Carolina!!! But we made it through the dreadful Droughtlander! Now we can bask in the glow of North Carolina and Fraser’s Ridge from our TV!

What a packed episode and the second episode is looking to be even more packed or maybe that was an extended version of what’s to come! WOW!

Starting off, I thought the beginning sequence was quite interesting with the EARLY (almost neanderthal like) inhabitants of the Americas and the stone circles.

Then when those words and numbers appeared on the screen ‘NORTH CAROLINA 1767’, I’m pretty sure I heard a collective cheer from every North Carolina Outlander fan! I turned to my husband and said, I’m sure the North Carolinians either squealed or cheered when they finally saw that.

Right off, I thought the set was amazing! Those buildings looked amazing!

It was rough seeing Hayes hung and seeing Jamie and Lesley go through that. Am I the only one who thought Bonnet had some fancy footwork getting out of that town square?

The opening credits blue grassy style is such a good change. Yes, I will miss the bagpipes. I mean, come on who won’t? However, we are in N.C. now. It’s the soon to be Southern style of music so let’s get use to it, aye?

I loved Lesley’s singing in Gaelic, joined by the rest of the family and then the rest of the tavern.

I felt terrible for Ian as he had a PTSD flashback to Geilis. It was nice despite the circumstances for Ian and Jamie to have that moment and connected. Throughout the earlier scenes with Bonnet, I kept shouting “Don’t trust him!”

The moment Jamie and Claire had in the woods was what I think we all needed. We needed to know that they were the same Jamie and Claire we always knew. It has been a long and tough ride since Claire went back through the stones, reunited with Jamie, went on the cross ocean voyage, were separated again and then were shipwrecked. They needed that connection and probably a vacation.

I sighed when Jamie said,

“After you left me, after Culloden I was dead, and all that time I loved you.

When my body dies, my soul will still be yours. Nothing is lost, Sassenach, only changed.”

There’s just something about that statement and how he said it with his Scottish lilt that got me. I can’t describe it, but I will try. It’s spiritual and I don’t know if it’s I wish my husband would whisper sweet nothings like that to me by a campfire or what but it gave me gooseys and continues to every dang time I hear it, thanks to one Sam Hueghan.

I’m sure it was a bit confusing for non book readers as to who were all the dinner guests at Lillington’s but one or two rather that I recognized were Phillip Wylie and his sister, Judith. What a little twit she is! Will we see more from them? Time will tell!

When they were back in the ‘family huddle’ and Fergus revealed that Marsali was expecting, I loved Jamie’s response was so sweet. I’m not sure what was going on with Claire’s response. Fear for her? Was it what they wanted? If you recall, she had mentioned to Claire that she wanted to enjoy being married to Fergus first before having little wee bairns running around. I don’t blame her! But then again that day in age it was almost expected after tying the knot.

On the road again, or down the river rather- Jamie shared a bit about his Aunt Jocasta. To me it was reminiscent of the Wedding Night scene when Jamie the Storyteller told Claire stories about his family. He had his storyteller voice on and it just made me laugh. I sighed when Jamie presented Claire with the medical chest! It was better than I even imagined! And then when he said,

“24 years ago I married ye, Sassenach, I hope I haven’t ever given you cause to regret it.”

Sigh….he had that little twinkle in his eye. Was he getting teary eyed? I don’t know, but it was sweet and special.

And then it happened that night, the invasion. Bonnet that slippery snake! He had heard everything they had planned and knew what possessions they had on them. Just when the American Dream was beginning for them, it turned into a nightmare! At first, the piano caught me off guard. At first I felt like I was on a Louisiana River boat or something. I hadn’t remembered a piano being on board nor thought it could fit! And then it hit or rather they hit! Bonnet and his thieving men! I felt so violated for them. Honestly, I think the music fit. I know, I know, such controversy but honestly would you wanted to totally hear all the punches and sounds of Jamie getting the crap kicked out of him or Claire’s gasps and cries? Not me! Could they have picked another song? Sure! Are we the producers and writers? Nope! We don’t have a say. Sorry!

And the ring! Frank’s ring was left! I heard (SPOILER ALERT) that it will logistically be easier for Brianna to identify Jamie’s ring down the road and try to recover it. Her mom wore that ring her life when she was growing up so she knows what it looks like. It’s distinct. Either that or Jamie could possibly get Claire a ring that looks more so like the book version of the ring. Food for thought….

What a cliff hanger though! I can’t wait to see how things get all sorted out.

I’m so glad to have the show back on the air. It feels like I’m reunited with old friends! It feel so good. Warm and cozy too going into the Fall, Winter and Holiday time! And can I just say, Hot dang the Laird Jacket is back!

Well there you have it, my recap of Season 4 Episode 1, until next time!

Tara Heller is the mother of two boys, who lives in South Central Pennsylvania. However her heart is the South. Although she is fairly new to Outlander, she has truly immersed herself in it. She also loves history, especially the 18th century, genealogy, visiting the coast, spending time with family and blogging atwww.ladyoutnumbered321.com.  You can read about her MPC story here.
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Backward, Forward and A Giveaway!

January 1, 2018

Happy New Year to you and yours! I pray that you all will have a happy, blessed 2018! For me, every new year comes with hopes for a year a little better than the last, but mostly, for good health and happiness for my family and my friends (that includes you!) and myself. It’s also a time to reflect on the happenings of the last year. The good and the bad, the sad and the happy moments, the things we might would change if we could and the things we wouldn’t change for the world. One of the things I wouldn’t change for the world is starting this blog and the companion Facebook group.  I have met so many wonderful friends who share my love and obsession for Outlander! (It’s nice to know there are other Outlander crazies out there who get it. Wink, wink.)  Of course, there have been some challenges as they come with every new venture but the challenges have paled in comparison to the blessings of you all allowing me a few moments of your lives to read the stuff I write – some of it being downright silly! Yet, you have stuck with me and I so appreciate that. The blog went live on August 5 with my first post and the Facebook group was created two days later. We now have 669 wonderful members in the group…and growing almost daily! I am completely overwhelmed and humbled! It has been an honor to make your acquaintance!

Just as no man is an island, certainly no woman is either and none of this could have happened without the encouragement and support of some very special people. First, my husband. He got dragged into my Outlander obsession and although he doesn’t completely understand it, he does completely support what I’m trying to do.  He even re-watches episodes with me and asks some pretty good questions from a strictly show watcher standpoint – he doesn’t read the books. He’s my Jamie and I so appreciate his love and support. Also, I have received a lot of encouragement and helpful advice from my good friend and group administrator, Susan Holmes Jackson.  Susan has even written a couple of blog posts for me and has been by my side in the group since the beginning.  What a blessing she has been!  Susan also makes Outlander jewelry as well as other beautiful items (I know because I have some of her pieces). You can find her jewelry on Facebook here.  Another big thank you goes to another administrator, Traci Wood Thompson, who has also contributed a blog post and has another one completed and waiting in the wings to be published very soon. More on that in just a bit. I also want to thank my other two administrators who have helped me keep things running smoothly in the group, Blair Beard and Nancy Roach (a/k/a The White Sow). You can find The White Sow on Facebook here or on Twitter @WhiteSow1.  All in all, Outlander North Carolina is an ongoing team effort and I am so thankful for my team! Lastly, but certainly not least, I couldn’t have done this without all of you who are reading this post right now, those of you who have subscribed to my blog, commented on and shared my silly posts, and joined and contributed to the Facebook group! You are what makes the wheel go round and I appreciate each and every one of you.

So, now that 2018 is here, what can you expect and look forward to from Outlander North Carolina in this New Year? Well, here are few things you can keep an eye out for:

  • Season 4! Need I say more! If you are a book reader, you know Claire & Jamie make their way to North Carolina! Because of that, it’s going to be an exciting year for us here at Outlander North Carolina! There will be much to discuss as filming progresses, the premiere draws nearer and as the new season begins. I can’t wait to have The Frasers as neighbors! I’ve been waiting for them for a long, long time!
  • Group Gatherings! Yay!!! We are hoping to have some gatherings throughout the state. If you don’t live in North Carolina but plan to visit, we’d love to meet you and plan a meet up around your visit. If you already live here or even if you don’t, we hope to plan gatherings in some key Outlander North Carolina locations – Wilmington, Edenton, New Bern, Hillsborough, Old Salem, Boone/Blowing Rock (a/k/a The Ridge) and perhaps, Fayetteville (a/k/a Cross Creek).
  • A new series by Traci Thompson which will delve into the topic of Scottish Immigration to North Carolina which should be very informative for all of us history buffs and Outlander lovers.
  • A new series by Susan Jackson on the Outlander North Carolina location of Edenton. You’ll recall Edenton from Drums of Autumn and subsequent books.  This should be a very interesting look inside the colonial Edenton of Jamie & Claire’s time.
  • More Guest Posts! You may even hear from The White Sow herself!
  • An Outlander North Carolina Travel Guide. We’ll be working on a travel guide so you can visit all the Outlander locations plus some in North Carolina. This will be offered as a free printable to group members and those who subscribe to the blog!
  • An Outlander North Carolina T-Shirt Design Contest. We’ve got to have an awesome T-shirt and we’re going to need your help to design it!
  • A Listing of Outlander Events and Appearances for 2018. Conferences, charity fundraisers, and gatherings – anywhere Outlander is celebrated or appearances are made by the cast and show runners, we will try out best to list them all.
  • A Scotland Travel Forum. I want to go to Scotland SO much and I know many others who want to also. Since some of you have already been, we’d love to tap into that knowledge bank and have a place where questions can be asked and answered plus where important Scotland travel information can be shared.
  • More Giveaways! Yes, stay on the lookout for more of these throughout the year. We’ve had a lot of fun with them so far. In fact, keep reading below for a chance to win in our newest giveaway!
  • Any number of things that just randomly pop into our brains!

Whew! I’m tired already just thinking about all of this but very excited too! Of course, there will be a roll out so don’t expect everything all at once. Patience, Grasshoppers! These things do take time.  Also, in order not to miss anything, you’ll want to make sure you are a member of the Outlander North Carolina Facebook Group (not to be confused with NC Outlander Fans which only accepts members who live or have lived in NC.)  Hop on over now to make sure you’re a member of the Outlander North Carolina Facebook Group since announcements will more than likely be shared there first. Here’s the link to the group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/outlandernorthcarolina/ If you’re not a member, we’d love to have you join in the craziness!

A Happy New Year Giveaway

As I mentioned above, we’re having a giveaway right now to celebrate the New Year and all the good things we hope happen here at Outlander North Carolina in 2018! Facebook group member, Jennifer Pittman (no relation), who has her very own jewelry design business, has graciously contributed this gorgeous bracelet which will be given away to one lucky person.

For more of Jennifer’s designs, you can find her on Facebook at JenuineDesignsbyJP https://www.facebook.com/JenuineDesignsbyJP/

Now, to enter for a chance to win, you must leave a comment to this post. One winner will be randomly selected from everyone who comments. What should you comment about? Well, tell me what you’d like to see on Outlander North Carolina. Do you have an idea that I haven’t mentioned? Would you like to write a guest post?  Would you like to contribute towards a giveaway? Would you like to help organize some events and gatherings for the group? What are you most looking forward to in 2018?  How can we make Outlander North Carolina better? Want to simply say hello? See, there’s plenty to say so just say it! Je Suis Prest! Are you? Get to it then and good luck!!! And as always, thank you for reading Outlander North Carolina.

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Happy New Year Giveaway Rules

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY AND A PURCHASE DOES NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING.  In order to enter for a chance to win the Sassenach bracelet by Jenuine Designs by JP, you MUST comment on this post. One comment and one entry per person. More than one comment by the same person will be automatically disregarded as an entry. This giveaway begins on Monday, January 1, 2018, at 12:15 PM EST and ends at 11:59 PM EST on Thursday, January 4, 2018.  The winner will be announced on the blog and on the Facebook group.  You must be 18 years of age or older to enter and must be a resident of the United States. (Apologies to our international readers. Giveaway laws vary widely in different countries and giveaways are totally prohibited in some.) Selection of the winner will be made by random drawing from qualifying entries within 48 hours of the end of the giveaway. Prize will be mailed directly to the winner by Jenuine Designs by JP. Questions regarding the giveaway can be directed to outlandernorthcarolina@gmail.com.