Previously on Outlander, Claire saved a boy from death, Jamie continued to flirt shamelessly while Claire simultaneously missed Frank and wanted Jamie (because we all want Jamie), and she both lost and regained hope for a return to the stones of Craigh Na Dun.
Claire has been covertly playing a game of hide and seek with the castle children as a way to learn the perimeter of the Castle and how it is guarded and stealthily marking her path with hair ribbons. She goes to the stables to get a horse for the “hunt” and also briefly asks after Mr. MacTavish AKA Jamie because if one goes to the stables one should ask about the hottie in the kilt who is always flirting with you.
When she gets back to her dungeon/medical office she finds Geillie lurking about and being her normal nosy assholish self –man everything out of Geillie’s mouth has a double meaning. Geillie asks Claire if she is with child because Claire has stored a suspicious amount of food in the clinic (Claire keeps calling it a dungeon but it’s so pretty). Claire tells Geillie she has never been unfaithful and kind of stumbles over whether or not Frank is dead making Geillie all the more suspicious. Geillie also tells Claire that she too came to the village with only her wits and a small knowledge of plants and NOW she is comfortable and most importantly FREE.
Claire goes to the kitchen to steal a knife but is intercepted by Mrs. Fitz who gets Claire ready for the gathering –Mrs. Fitz does NOT want anyone to miss out on a party even if they are an Englishman. Claire watches the oath taking with Jamie’s BFF Murtaugh who nicely translates everything for Claire. She is able to slip away from both Murtaugh and Fitz and is on her way back to the clinic when she is confronted by Angus who is miffed that he will have to leave the party to follow her back to the clinic. But because Claire is always two steps ahead, she had secured a bottle of port from Geillie AND instructions on how to properly drug it (thankfully Geillie hates having intercourse with her flatulent husband) so poor Angus is sent back to the party with fancy drugged booze. BONUS nerd moment was that both showrunner Ronald D. Moore and book author Diana Gabaldon are in attendance at the gathering and I got so excited I had to tell M in a text message (I was also drinking wine so it isn’t THAT nerdy).
Once Claire is free from Angus she is able to grab her basket of escape provisions and begins her escape BUT she is almost immediately accosted by a group of drunk dudes who try to overpower her but she is saved by Dougal. Unfortunately Dougal is drunk TOO and has the same ideas as the dudes to sexually assault Claire, but since he is only one drunk dude she is able to push him off and then knock him out by hitting him in the head with a stool.
I find it interesting that I don’t find the threat of sexual assault used as a trope on Outlander nor in the books because I think that it is probably a terribly accurate portrayal of how dangerous it was to be an unmarried in that time period AND think that is something that we should all learn and learn from. I DO find it terribly disheartening that I would find it extremely scary to walk down a hall toward three drunk dudes today in the 21st century. I think Outlander is trying to make a point that it’s sometimes dangerous just being a woman in rape culture, as opposed to using sexual assault as an exploitative trope that is overused on TV.
After fending off drunken attackers Claire makes it to the stable only to bump into
Mr. ManCandy Jamie who is trying to get some sleep while the party is in full swing up at the castle. He quickly realizes Claire is trying to escape and then very logically points out all the ways she was bound to fail. Claire informs him that shit might be weird for her at the castle because she just knocked out good old uncle Dougal for getting handsy. Jamie tells Claire that Dougal is likely not to remember she hit him and if he does he isn’t likely to bring it up since he was laid flat by a lass. He does offer to take her back to the castle so that she won’t be bothered by anymore drunk dudes. Unfortunately on their way in the duo is attacked by Rupert and a couple of other guys who were looking for Jamie at the gathering.
It seems that the reason Jamie was hiding out in the stable is so that he doesn’t have to take the oath to clan MacKenzie. Murtaugh informs Claire that since Jamie’s mother is a MacKenzie, Colum is in poor health, and Hamish Colum’s son is a mere lad Jamie could challenge Dougal for the Lairdship. Basically because of Claire’s escape she has put poor Jamie in a political pickle. If he doesn’t take the oath then Colum will have to kill him for not being faithful to him but if he does take the oath Dougal will kill him because he could potentially ruin Dougal’s future job prospects. Thankfully Jamie is a born politician and basically declines the oath as a member of another clan but promises his life to Colum as his nephew. All is well and poor Claire won’t have to stitch Jamie up this week.
Since she didn’t escape the night before Claire has to go on the boar hunt just in case anyone gets hurt. Claire bitches to anyone who will listen how stupid boar-hunting is, even while she and Rupert tend to a wounded man. Just as she is finished bitching and sending the man with Rupert back to the castle, she hears a deathly scream. Claire goes off running toward the screams, but comes face to face with the very frightening wild boar (Claire get’s some of her smart points deducted for running off into the woods when she knows a dangerous animal is running around scared for its life). Thankfully for Claire but not the boar Dougal shoots it before it charges on her. Dougal takes her to the last boar victim. The man has a bad injury but an even more serious abdomen wound. She and Dougal work together to ease the man’s suffering as he dies.
After the hunt, the party walks back to the castle and notices a friendly game of field hockey between Jamie and a bunch of other dudes going on. Dougal, I guess angry at his friend’s death AND because of Jamie’s gift at politics, decides he TOO would like to play field hockey. However Dougal’s field hockey looks more like Dougal wants to tackle Jamie and hit him with a stick. Jamie and Dougal have it out though Jamie mostly keeps a smile on his face but also fights back. I have no fucking clue why this was even in the episode as Jamie doesn’t even get naked. It’s basically I guess another scene of Dougal being an asshole.
This episode ends with Dougal telling Claire that he knows she has seen men die of violence and war and that he is taking her with him on his rent collection trip –FUN?