Previously on Outlander, “The Birds and the Bees”
Things should be downright idyllic for Brianna right now, with Claire and Jamie and the goats and that awful patchwork shirt she loves, but she just cannot get over Roger leaving her. Or Bonnet raping her. You know, it’s probably a combination of the two. Jamie sees the pain that she’s going through and, now that he knows more about what happened to her, wants to fix her. It’s actually not that far-fetched, since they’re both rape survivors. When she can’t be reasoned with to stop blaming herself, his tactic changes. It seems super harsh at first, when he agrees that she should have fought harder, but once he physically shows her that she never could have fought off Bonnet—er, her mystery attacker—something finally clicks in her. It’s a brutal lesson, terrifying to relive that feeling of helplessness even in a safe environment, but Jamie somehow knows how to get through. He can’t fix her, but hopefully he can give her some of her peace back. Then, in a flip flop, conversation turns to Black Jack Randall and Culloden, and it’s Bri’s turn to make Jamie understand why going after her attacker might just be part of her healing process. He doesn’t much agree, but I bet in a few episodes that’s not going to matter.
Ever the doctor, Claire is finally having the “I can give you a surgical pioneer abortion” talk with her daughter the patient; a rite of passage for every mother and daughter. It’s a lot to take in: there are herbal options, which aren’t a guarantee, and there’s surgery with no anesthesia, and I have never in my life been so thankful for health insurance and CVS. The problem is that there’s technically a chance that the baby is Roger’s. And an even bigger problem is that, if she ever wants to go back later, the baby might not even have the gene that allows it to travel through the stones. She basically has to make all of these monumental life decisions about keeping a baby and looking for her husband and leaving her parents all at once. This is the same girl who couldn’t decide over three episodes if she ever wants to get married!
Other than all of that particular turmoil, everything seems pretty damn perfect on the ridge. There are pigs and gardens and really lovely skirted coats and every night seems to end with a Norman Rockwell-style family dinner. It’s enough to make you forget about the rape, hard labor, and crooked tax officials and. really question if you were born in the wrong time.
Claire and Bri play this game of What Do You Miss the Most from the 20th Century, and while it’s one thing to see a mother and daughter bonding as adults, there’s a whole other layer of them bonding over things that literally no one else can understand. As much as Jamie believes every word Claire says regarding modern times, it must be a completely different thing altogether to actually talk to somebody that really gets it. But as charming as the days are, Bri’s nights are still filled with dreams of Roger and nightmares of Steven Bonnet. Lizzie wakes her up one night after one particularly bad night terror, and through a very long-winded conversation (the only kind Lizzie has), Bri finally pieces together that Roger had made it to Fraser’s Ridge before Young Ian and Jamie beat him up and sent him away.
Oh, shit. Brianna’s on a warpath now! She storms into the main house throwing all kinds of accusations at Jamie. Well, they’re not technically accusations, since they’re true, but Jamie bristles being blamed for Lizzie’s mistake then turns the things around on Brianna by accusing her of being *gasp* lustful. This whole thing could easily be sorted out if everyone would just calm down and talk through the finer points of this misunderstanding, but that must not be the Fraser way. Even Claire gets in on the finger pointing, taking Brianna’s side, although she’s hardly blameless when she’s only sharing half-truths with Jamie. If this were an Oscar Wilde play, everything would end with a great laugh and probably a wedding; instead, Bri’s screaming at her father and breaking her cousin’s nose.
Remember how Young Ian was supposed to “get rid” of Roger? Welp, he did just that—he sold him to a tribe of Mohawk passing through the area. The good news is that the tacky necklace Ian traded him for will help them find that particular tribe. The bad news, if things can actually get worse, is that the Mohawk live in upstate New York. Bri can’t go, since apparently in all this turmoil she’s made a well thought out decision to keep the baby and a pregnant woman can’t just hop on a horse and pursue her husband. She seems to think she and Lizzie can just stay alone on the top of a mountain while Jamie, Ian, and Claire go find Roger, and somehow Claire doesn’t shake her and scream “This is not the 20th century!” Instead, Murtaugh takes Lizzie and Brianna to River Run while the other three start tracking the Indians.
Aunt Jocasta and Murtaugh know each other from the way back, so for a lady who can’t actually see anything she’s thrilled to see him again. And even though she and Jamie maybe didn’t leave on the best terms, she’s also happy to take Brianna in, scandalously unwed and knocked up as she is. If she thought Claire’s modern sensibilities were hard to deal with, Brianna is going to rock her slave-filled little world.
Poor Roger (and yes, I mean that). He’s in a different century, gets beaten up for no reason, then wakes up to find himself being dragged behind a horse by a tribe of people he’s probably never seen before. He’s not their only prisoner, either; they’ve got some other guy tied up, too, who by that cough doesn’t sound like he’s much long for this world. Roger’s trying to form a plan, any plan, to escape; he’s keeping track of days and directions and the sun, even though there is zero telling what state they’re even in right now. The Indians aren’t treating him badly, necessarily, although that coughing guy who died overnight might disagree. They’re not slowing their pace at all, though, and all that walking with his hands tied has worn a man out. He finally gets his chance to escape when he stumbles and falls off the side of a small cliff. Somehow, he finds the energy to run and evades the Mohawk who chase after him, which I do not for a minute think would happen in real life. These men hunt and track every damn day of their lives, and they run right by a Scottish man catching his breath behind a loose-leafed bush?
Roger wastes no time in putting distance between them, but as he’s running deeper into wilderness he gets distracted by a weird buzzing noise. He follows the sound and aren’t we all just shocked to find an American-style Craigh na Duhn! Who would have ever thought that there would be more than just the stones in Scotland? Wait, there were also stones in Haiti. Who would have ever thought there would be more than those two randomly selected places with traveling stones? What if there are stones in different places all over the world?!
This could all be going through Roger’s mind. Or, he could be wondering if maybe this century is not the time and place for him and he should get himself back home. He does have those two tiny gemstones he got from Stephen Bonnet—can he do it? Can he truly abandon Brianna this time and go back to where he obviously belongs?
Outlander S4E10 Review Score
"The Deep Heart's Core"
Outlander – S4E10 – “The Deep Heart’s Core” | Starring: Sam Heughan, Caitriona Balfe