STARZ Outlander: A Malcolm, Season 3 episode 6 is the one everyone has been waiting for, the one that sees Red Jamie, aka Jamie Fraser, Alexander McKenzie or is it Alexander Malcolm (Sam Heughan) finally reunited with his wife Claire (Caitriona Balfe) back from Boston.
Whew, no wonder she’s found it hard to find him, James “Jamie” Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser (Sam Heughan) has indeed become the perfect historical chameleon, hiding out from everyone and changing his face, his hat and his coat whenever necessary to survive.
It would be fair to say all the filmmakers involved in producing the hit television series Outlander, from sight to sound, have now attained a fair amount of expertise in the art of seduction and this is the episode that proves it once and for all.
The women have had to wait like Claire, who has ached all over for twenty years remembering what it was like to be with the one man with whom she has this being his second skin relationship. The men, well, they are being taught all over again, how to please a woman… slowly taking their time savouring every moment of the experience in case in reality it is your last.
All the times we live in are dangerous, don’t be fooled.
The focus is wisely on Jamie here… from having his clothing adjusted by another woman before leaving for work. Who is she by the way? Then strolling along High Street Edinburgh on his way to his print shop.
He does this slowly too, taking in the sights and the sounds of the High Street in the Old Town to the sound of the lusty Coming through the Rye…a traditional tune to wondrous words by Scotland’s favourite poet Robbie Burns (1759 – 1796) … now there was a lad!
… Ilka lassie has a laddie
Nane, they say, ha’e I
Yet a’ the lads they smile at me
When comin’ through the rye
It’s not long until our handsome hero arrives at his Print Shop where he starts his day despatching two rogues with treasonous leaflets. And then his colleague Geordie arrives and he sends him for much needed supplies.
Then the bell rings again and we know its Claire arriving …and he turns to see if it is only an illusion that she’s smiling down at him before he faints dead away. Now we’re on target.
Don’t read any more if you don’t want spoilers!
Claire rushes down the stairs to help the man she loves who is in a dead swoon, slowly coming back into the land of the living.
“You are real”, Jamie says… he cannot believe Claire is flesh and blood. Well who would blame him – I mean really!
Here’s a woman able to go back and forth in history by two centuries and it’s hard to think she would leave 1968 where freedom is being espoused everywhere and a new generation’s revolution is in full swing, to go back into the eighteenth century where everything is so much more, well – untamed.
However, as we do all know love does conquer all!
The poor man is in quite a state… he’s peed his pants and so shy at first, Jamie asks her to turn around while he takes them off.
“Don’t worry”, she reminds him, “…we are married” and shows him how she has never taken their ring off her finger.
“I would very much like to kiss you… may I?” he asks.
The Kiss puts the one painter Gustav Klimt completed to shame.
“You came to me so often in my dreams… I would see you smiling, your hair around your face”. Then the spell is broken when Geordie returns, oversees them kissing and Jamie with his pants off and quits on the spot.
I mean, what an outrage… you leave the office for a few minutes and you come back and there’s your colleague getting his kit off and it is not even the middle of the morning…whew! Some men do have all the luck.
Claire has photos of ‘our daughter’ and having dealt with the revelation that in the future you can capture an image and print it…. all in a few seconds, they savour every moment of sharing them. He also immediately tells her how he also has a son. We love his honesty.
Reassuring Claire, he says afterwards, “Time doesn’t matter Sassenach, you will always be beautiful to me”.
Well, it is what every woman wants to hear and so we all swoon on the spot too. How could we not. Sam Heughan seems like every woman’s dream man… pity help him in real life. He must be like Byron in his day, when women would swoon every time he came into a room.
Back to Edinburgh. . Claire and Jamie are now out and about in the town as Jamie has a meeting with their French adopted son Fergus (Cesar Domboy), who is all grown up and out of his mind with joy to see Claire. We’re all so happy watching this spectacle too, we feel quite with them in the moment.
Then he takes her ‘home’, where that ‘woman’ is waiting, you know the one that adjusted his scarf that morning before he left for ‘work’. Claire finds herself spending her first night with Jamie in a brothel and the ‘Madame’ looks none too pleased with her favourite ‘client’s’ outstanding reveal!
Well, what else is new. This is a ‘lad’, we have been warned. It’s better than The Batchelorette!
Then it is dinner together by candlelight, reminiscing, carefully filling in the details of their time apart as the re-discover whether they are the two people who once existed as one…
Undressing each other, making love… you get the gist of it all… I will leave the details up to you to fill in when you have sat through the agony, ecstasy and beauty of it all.
The next morning though Claire is in for a big surprise when she finds out our Jamie is not just a printer… he’s a smuggler too… why not. Our Jamie has such hidden talents and they just keep on emerging courtesy of author Diana Gabaldon and her really imaginative mind.
Every girl loves a bit of a rogue after all. My Nan used to tell me I wasn’t to marry a man unless he was a ‘bit of a lad’. And she was always right!
Claire stays in their room abed while Jamie dresses and goes to attend to some business, that is until his sister Jenny’s son the young Ian Murray (John Bell) bursts in unannounced, to whom she declares I am your aunt Claire. You get the feeling that a lot of ships pass in the night in Jamie’s room.
“So, I am pleased to meet you Uncle Jamie’s wife…. will you tell him I am looking for him!” he says in a manner that has some urgency attached and not surprised or abashed to meet her in undergarments.
Claire, still hasn’t got out of her shift when he leaves and she descends the stairs with nothing but a flimsy shawl attached. It’s almost like seeking trouble a girl of her age and sensibility you would think might have a few more brains and not just her want to break her fast with some of the girls below, who are no doubt eating lunch and find her being ‘Jamie’s wife’ amusing.
Madame however is certainly not amused and sends her packing back to ‘their room’ where she unexpectedly finds a villain in the process of ransacking it… he promises to rape her when he’s done… fade to black. Goodness, how do we survive another week of waiting to find out if she will be violated or if Jamie wills save the day?
Outlander and its sterling cast and crew just continues to out excel itself. They have made the considerable art of seduction into a grand entertainment.
Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2018