“Between Two Fires”
Directed by Stephen Woolfenden
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Unlike episode 1, this episode is hit and miss.
Jamie Fraser/The Regulators/Knox
The Jamie Fraser, Murtagh (Regulators), and Knox (The Crown) storyline is compelling and showcases Jamie’s honor, duty, and loyalty. He’s made oaths to the Crown and Governor Tryon for the betterment of his people knowing he will turncoat when the American Revolution gets underway. Taking care of his people is of utmost importance and he’s willing to take a difficult and seemingly contradictory path (on the surface) to get there. His public person must outwardly support the Crown, while his private person is making plans leagues down the road to support the emerging Americans. He is a well-educated and philosophical man who strives to understand his friends and enemies. He is a political strategist who knows how to play a long game and visualize the ongoing chess board most would not understand. During the episode, he attempted to use his King of Men powers to persuade Knox to take another path, on lacking more bloodshed, but like Murtagh, Knox was able to justify his heinous actions that resulted in violence.
Murtagh, unlike Jamie, yet like Knox, allowed himself into supporting and stirring violence while justifying its need and use. Murtagh’s darkness was revealed in the opening minutes and remarkably he understands Jamie’s position and what he is trying to accomplish. After the quick and shallow introduction of Hunter and Husband, I believe Murtagh is a dead man walking, at the very least he is heading to Canada or into the wilds of the West. Murtagh is a seemingly unmovable force and I cannot envision a place for him after the fight with the Regulators comes to an end.
This is where the miss of the hit and miss comes in for me as a viewer at least with Claire. Roger, Brianna, and Marsali are fantastic.
My new term for Claire Fraser this episode is “Clairrogance.” She’s over the top and out of touch with her culture on the Ridge n the 18th-century. Her arrogance under the guise of wanting to help those in her sphere rings false. It’s too fervent, too rash, and how after spending two different jaunts into the past does she lack sensitivity, understanding of her audience, and what ails the people of that time? It makes no sense for her to seem obsessive and “playing God” as Brianna so aptly put it.
She’s performing an autopsy but is sure no one will find out. So, who is going to uncover her disturbing foray into the human body, Mr. Farrish, who is supposed to be buried? Is she trying to get burned at the stake? She already knew what killed the man, and comes to the 18th this go-round being a skilled surgeon. She doesn’t need a cadaver for Marsali to apprentice under her, she needs Marsali to attend clinic appointments and emergencies to learn. Again, it rings TOO MUCH. This episode makes me like Claire a little less. Brianna acts like the mother trying to get Claire to see reason in what she’s doing.
Roger, on the other hand, is feeling insecure and cannot seem to find a niche outside of singing, and acting as minister on the Ridge. He has little valuable skill and doesn’t feel the all-encompassing family love Brianna is so connected to. To highlight his inability, he and Brianna go shooting and he cannot hit a tree or a wild turkey. To top it off, Claire cannot find any reason for his poor shooting. (Ahem, book readers understand my annoyance here). He thinks he wants to go back to the 20th-century but until they know whether Jemmy can hear the stones, they cannot even consider it. Who’s baby is it anyway?
Brianna is struggling with the aftermath of learning Bonnet is alive. She’s sketchy him over and over. A face dark and the image of trauma. Roger accidentally finds the sketches and is concerned.
Stephen Bonnet is alive and well in Wilmington. He’s a free man and doing business with those in Aunt Jocasta’s circle. In the episode, he reveals himself as a vicious and wicked man of drive and darkness. He is a father and is going after what is his.
A couple of mentions, we meet Mrs. Bug, Husband, and Hunter in a flash during the episode, so this tells us they will be back and have some importance in the future.
I’m hoping Claire is not portrayed this way for the rest of the season, or it’s going to be a difficult watch during her storylines.
Otherwise, it’s looking good.
See you on the other side of E3!
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Screencaps courtesy of Outlander-Online
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