A Response: Claire Sex Raunchy?

Ever since the Herald.ie’s article on Caitriona Balfe with the headline utilizing the word raunchy, I have been uncomfortably bantering it about. Chewing on the word as it pertains to Claire’s sexual activity in Outlander.

I have looked up the definition of raunchy in several dictionaries. (An American word in origin as an interesting side note by the way.)

According to the Cambridge British English dictionary it is defined as rude or offensive because of showing or talking about sex in an obvious way.

Merriam-Webster has a more detailed definition: Dealing with or suggesting sex in a way that is somewhat shocking
: very dirty, smelly, etc.

1. Slovenly, dirty
2. Obscene, smutty

Stop for a moment and review the sex scenes in the Starz Outlander series thus far….. Raunchy likely NEVER entered your mind.

What descriptors do you come up with?

Okay, okay, I will freely admit that “Downtown Frank” was a shock as a reader as there is never a mention of him in the pages: A) servicing Claire thusly, B) He does not seem like the sexual assertor in the relationship, and C) He feels more sexually selfish in the pages.

That shock aside, Claire’s encounters feel raunchy not at all. They feel like what a sexually aware, in tune with self, vibrant woman would experience. A married woman I ought add. Is raunchy even possible within consensual married sex or any consensual sex for that matter?

No shock she and Frank would have sex at the bed and breakfast. Second honeymoon folks. She and Frank were trying to reconnect and rebuild after the war years. Raunchy? No.

No shock she would like receiving oral sex and suggestively not wear panties on an outing with her husband. And bless her for asking for what she wanted. Ask and hopefully thee shall receive. Raunchy? No.

The wedding night. Virgin groom. Exploration of each other. Claire as teacher. Jamie as astute learner. Three times for sex. Get it done sex. Lusty I like it with you sex. Then the connecting intimate sex. She gives him oral. Nibbles on him. She even has an orgasm during the evening’s activities. No real shocks here. Raunchy? No.

She and Jamie have mostly clothed sex outdoors. No shock here, newlyweds and they are traveling about. Raunchy? No.

On top of those examples, Outlander sex scenes never feel gratuitous to me.

Sex is a very real and healthy part of Claire’s point of view. Sex is a form of communication, an act of giving and receiving, and bloody hell she enjoys it.

The point of the Herald.ie article was actually a solid one. That the intimate scenes are easier for Cait to shoot because she and her co-stars are friends. She feels safe. She feels supported. She feels free to play her role.

That all sounds like the foundation for not only filming intimate scenes but for sex in general.

I wonder how many of the millions of the female readers and viewers have been given permission of sorts to have a positive, open attitude toward sex thanks to our beloved Claire? Or how the male fan views female sexuality?

What say you?



10 thoughts on “A Response: Claire Sex Raunchy?

  1. Certainly not raunchy – Claire is a sexual woman. She has been to war too (more than Frank in his spy work) and wants to feel alive again with someone she loves. In the beginnng at Leoch she is yearning for attachment. When she sees Jamie with Lallygirl she realizes it more. The wedding night was far from anything other than the beginning of their physical attachment for Claire at first and Jamie’s love. She surrenders with the pearls to her emotions and really sees him. Beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think it is about damn time we have a sexually confident female lead; as an aside, having sex with your husband is not raunchy. I’m curious why the “raunchy” adjective focuses on Claire. You’ve got a good exploration going on here with your question. Now, when Tobias and Sam get interviewed, it’s elbow bumps and smiles about the sex…when it’s Cait, she gets asked how she manages to do raunchy sex scenes. Hhhmmnn.
    Claire is a fantastic character for so many reasons. It just startles me that at this point in time, people can be surprised a woman would do more than tolerate sex for the promise of baby-making or getting new furniture.

    Liked by 1 person

    • In 2015 sadly still confounds people or is use to be titillating versus just normal to have a healthy sexual attitude and appetite as a woman. I only explored from Claire’s pov because the article focused there. More exploration afoot for the men.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I wasn’t meaning you, in particular, just in general interviews. You know? I mean, they must realize how much of the fan base are female, and love Claire…surely they must see a difference in the way they approach the guys vs. Caitriona. I think all the actors are fantastic; I just wonder why they DO that. (grumble, grumble)


  3. mlr548 says:

    How can anyone who has seen all the episodes possably call any ot the LOVE scenes raunchy. Caire and Frank are married and if he goes downtown or she does doesn’t matter its a relationship a marital relationship. She and Jamie are Married.when where and how doesn’t matter either they are at the beginning of their Marriage.There is nothing raunchy in a marriage. its about time we here in the U.S. grow up .Folks this is so far from raunch its laughable.I could only conclude the writer of that article is a prude or doesn’t have a realistic knowledge of whats going on between men an women. Now lets not even go to women’s liberation issue I could go on for days on that subject. All in all e
    verything we saw in this series was done with taste dignity and emotion not just wall to wall sex.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you. The article is out of an Irish newspaper.

      For the sleaze factor is my thought. I am frustrated such tactics are used when headling an overall positive article featuring Cait.
      That would be likw calling the rape, near destruction and humilation of Jamie by BJR consensual BDSM.


  4. myrnama says:

    I think the Internet invites more people to leave these “anonymous” kind of posts being critical of whatever they may watch on TV or in movies or read in a book! I think that criticism of TV shows, especially, run the gamut of Love & Adoration to Loathing & Denunciation. So for me I take all of the posts I may read with a grain of salt, due to the nature of the comments around the “Inter-web.” I, maybe egotistically, prefer my own evaluation of the programs that I may watch; that’s why I also don’t read reviews of movies before I go to watch them! Anyway…I am a long-time fan of Diana Gabaldon’s book series Outlander; almost from the beginning of her writing them!! I am so VERRA, VERRA happy to see them now being done justice in the STARZ production of Outlander!! I look forward to the last eight episodes of Season One starting in April & am so excited that there was already a renewal for a Season Two…I hope they go for at least the eight books now in print. AND, with a hope that Caitriona & Sam can get their wish of them filming of Outlander into their 50’s. (As stated in an Anglophenia Awards YouTube video of them just recently!) So, now, on to my take of the scene of Claire & “Downtown Frank” in the “Sassenach” episode of Outlander.

    If I remember correctly in the scene with Claire seated on the table in “Davie Beaton’s surgery” in 1945, she invites Frank to perform fellatio on her with a subtle downward nod of her head! Thereby making her the initiator of this encounter in Castle Leoch!! Showing her character strong enough to ask for what she wants! I believe I remember hearing or reading Ronald D Moore saying this was an added scene not found in Outlander, but relating it to the fact that Claire as a woman of 1945 was intelligent & quick thinking. I think, also, maybe it was added to show Claire as a strong, free & forward thinking woman of her time; after her undoubtedly extensive wartime experiences of death, mutilation & mourning of many of the men she encountered in her work as a WWI nurse! Grabbing the “bull by the horns” as it were, not being afraid to “ask” for what SHE wanted!!


  5. Brenda Walls says:

    It’s a sexual woman who isn’t a celebrity, or being “dominated in the episode by the man” so no I am not surprised by them saying that. Guess what….they should look at the fan base stats!!!! Keep it coming Starz, Outlander, Diana Gabaldon, Cait Balfe!!!! We will be watching and cheering you on with our support and $$$!!!


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