SPOILER ALERT: If you have not watched the season four premiere of Outlander that aired November 5th, turn back now!!!! Spoilers lie ahead!!! You have been warned.
**** SPOILERS AHEAD****
The wait is over! We finally (FINALLY!!) have new episodes of Outlander. True to form, after a short intro we get a new opening title sequence. I think this one is by far my favorite. I love the banjo and group singing. Reminds me of folktale singing and family get-togethers. Alright, let’s dive into the episode, shall we?
The episode opens with what I can only assume is a group of Natives. They are building and dancing around standing stones. As the camera pans back we see a noose in a town as Jamie pays off a guard to so he can go and speak to a friend who is on the executioner’s block for murder. Jamie tells Hayes that they have a plan to get him out. Hayes tells him no. He deserves this ending. He also tells Jamie that the one thing he can do for him is to be the last friendly face that he sees in the crowd. A fight breaks out after the hanging and one prisoner takes this chance to escape. Soldiers are hot on his heels. Later we see them sneaking (the priest denied the burial of a man who has been hung for a crime) into a churchyard Kirk to bury their friend, Hayes. While Jamie and Ian are digging the grave, Ian suddenly has flashbacks and he freaks out. While trying to calm his nephew down, Jamie finally gets him to open up about his time with Gellis Duncan. He tells Jamie that she made him do sexual things that he didn’t want to do. Jamie tells him that “your cock doesn’t have a conscience but you have.” When they go to get Hayes’ body from the wagon, a man suddenly rises up and scares everyone. He tells him that his name is Stephen Bonnet. He asks them for a ride to their next destination. He offers to help them bury their friend. Jamie and Claire attempt to get out of town with Bonnet hiding in the back of the wagon. They are stopped at a checkpoint by British soldiers. They manage to sneak him out wrapped in a shroud. I will have to admit the actor makes me not want to hate his character. The Irish brogue is everything really.
We cut to Jamie and Claire in the forest on a blanket by a fire. Jamie is just yummy but I am sorry, making love in the middle of the woods just seems unhygienic. Rocks, sticks, pine cones, and poison ivy all up in there. I am loving this change of scenery. Even though the filming never left Scotland, it looks just like the wild backwoods of America. Finally, we get a little hint about the Natives. Jamie asks about the land and what it means for them with the influx of immigrants. We next see them heading to a fancy dinner in the hopes of selling their ruby and making some money to help them finish the rest of their trip to River Run. Did you catch the little mean girl jab against Claire with her slightly out of style hair? She lets it roll off her back. Jamie is offered land by the Governor in exchange for pledging his fealty to the King. The Governor is also willing to look the other way about his Catholic upbringing. Once they are back in their room at the inn, Jamie and Claire discuss the land offer. She explains to Jamie that, unlike Culloden, the British will be on the losing side of history.
ROLO!! Finally, we get to meet Ian’s dog. They are so adorable. Ian gets so excited about his winnings from a dice game. Jamie and Claire are acting as surrogate parents to him. They tell him no more dice games. They break the news to the rest of the group that they are staying and take the Governor up on his land offer. Ian desperately wants to stay with his uncle but Jamie will hear none of it. Fergus, however, tells Jamie that they are going to stay here in America with them and start a new life. Fergus announces that they are expecting their first child and everyone is thrilled.
They are finally on the barge heading for River Run and Jamie’s Aunt Jocasta. As night falls Jamie calls Claire to him and gives her the medicine box that he bought for her. It looks exactly like I thought it would. She is overwhelmed and falls in love with the wee little box. Night has fallen and they have camped on the river bank for the night. Most are sleeping on the barge while the captain and his crew are sleeping on shore. Suddenly, Rolo starts barking and jumps into the water. Stephen Bonnet is attacking the barge with the crew he is leading. They want Claire’s rings. She takes them and pops them into her mouth. They manage to get one of them out but she swallows and later spits up her wedding ring from Frank. Her ring from Jamie is the one that is stolen.
This episode was great. It had enough action but it also eased us back into the series. It wasn’t overwhelming. I was a bit worried when I saw that the costume designer was retiring how it would affect the dress of the show and I didn’t even notice a change at all. Kudos to them for the seamless transition. I loved the casting of Stephen Bonnet. Granted he isn’t as smary as I imagined but they made him dashing enough that even Jamie trusted him. I cannot wait for the next episode. Excuse me while I go rewatch to see if I missed anything the first go around!