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TV Review: Outlander 1.16 “To Ransom A Man’s Soul”
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Outlander
Season 1 Episode 16: “To Ransom A Man’s Soul”
Directed by Anna Foerster
Written by Ira Steven Behr, Ronald D. Moore
Created by Ronald D. Moore
Based on the books by Diana Galbadon
Starring Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Duncan Lacroix, Graham McTavish, Tobias Menzies, Grant O’Rourke, Stephen Walters, Gary Lewis, Steven Cree, Laura Donnelly
Starz
Air Date: Saturday, May 30th, 2015, 9:00pm

It is the season 1 finale of Outlander, the epic tale of Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp Randall Fraser (Caitriona Balfe) and James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser (Sam Heughan). Outlander, based on the Diana Galbadon series, really translated from the page to the screen, in ways that went beyond any expectations.

Sing me a song of a lass that is gone,
Say, could that lass be I
Merry of soul she sailed on a day
Over the sea to Skye

Starz was really smart in grabbing this series. There’s tons more material, and these two leads are perfect. Do not continue if you have not watched the finale. There are spoilers!

Last week on Outlander, Jaime was saved from execution at the last minute (like the noose-was-already-around-his-neck last minute), by BlackJack Randall (Tobias Menzies), who wanted to torture him, but also wanted to have sex with him. Claire managed to get inside the prison, but was only used as leverage – Jaime would submit if Randall let her go free. It was quite heartwrenching as Claire was dragged away with an ugly cry. The hope I mentioned last time was Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix) getting an idea on how to get Jaime free – and it involves cattle.

Outlander 1.16 “To Ransom A Man’s Soul” review: The end, much like the whole season, was delicious – violence, sex, and sweeping romance that transcended time, love, hope, and healing.

The aftermath of a rape (with no outcry like GOT – is it because it was the rape of a man?), this episode showed Jaime’s rescue, and the flashback of the shame of Jaime’s submission. The stampede, and Murtagh’s gentle wrapping up of Jaime’s nakedness, and carrying him to safety, was fantastic. It was true to the book. Sam Heughan did Diana Galbadon proud, reflecting his character’s mental torment perfectly. He wanted to die, and we believed him. Of course Claire would not let him waste away to die. We expect no less from our heroine. I think Claire believed that if he talked about it, it would be like lancing a wound – you cannot heal unless you let the pain flow freely.

The rape/not rape scene is superbly executed. It unfolds slowly, juxtaposed with present scenes. Heughan reveals Jaime’s reluctant desire and the weeping shame afterward. There is some more full frontal, but it is not gratuitous.

I cannot say enough about Tobias Menzies. He managed, with subtle expressions, to be both a monster and a lover. I think he deserves an Emmy. I actually think the 3 of them deserve an Emmy, but him most of all.

Claire is finally able to draw Jaime out a bit. Murtagh cuts off the brand (yes – Randall branded him). I had to look away at first slice. And Jaime seems to not need to vomit at her touch by the end.

They need to hightail it out of Scotland, so they board a ship to France. The episode ends with a glorious panoramic shot of the 2 of them sailing on the ship, just after she told him she’s pregnant.

Season 2 cannot get here fast enough. If you have not read the books – read them. If you missed any or all of season 1 – watch it. The summer is the time!

Image Gallery

Video

Outlander season 1 Episode 16 Season Finale Promo #2 [Outlander 1×16 Promo]

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