In the aftermath of the Battle of Saratoga, a mother and young son are scavenging items from the bodies of dead Rebel soldiers. This time it’s Jamie they’re stealing from and as the woman orders her son to slit his throat, this episode’s hero Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser the Badass of Oxfordshire suddenly appears on the scene. She fights them off, then examines Jamie and his hand looks like it went through a meat grinder and he also has a nasty head wound. Jamie regains consciousness and Claire will not stop scolding and berating him and I don’t blame her, he scared the hell out of her yet again.
Back in their tent, Claire is cleaning Jamie’s nasty hand wound, she updates him on the battle and he is understandably upset upon learning of the British casualties because his son, William, is a Redcoat. She doesn’t clean or examine his nasty head wound which bothers me. (Years ago, my husband got his hand caught in a wood splitter…(hospital and stitches) and I bathed the disgusting filth off his body when we returned home, but I guess she’s busier than I was as I didn’t have more patients to see.) But still…infection! He nods off and Claire heads back to the MASH unit to treat soldiers.
Poor Denzell Hunter has lost too many patients in one day and is questioning his life and career choices. Claire reassures him. Claire goes back to Jamie and roofies him with laudanum and sews up his hand. Happily, someone has washed Jamie’s head wound so there will be no more whining from me!
Roger and Uncle Buck return to Lallybroch and tell Brianna the Misogynist Rob Cameron has taken Jem through the Stones. Uncle Buck will go with Roger back through the Stones to find Jem.
Two weeks later, Jamie’s hand is healing and while he goes to tinkle, Claire and Ian discuss there’s going to be another battle. Rollo slurps the open container of goose grease meant for Dr. Hunter’s patient and Ian, with a goofy grin on his face offers to go get more and deliver it to him. Hunter's sister Rachel is always by his side which has absolutely contributed to the love struck look on Ian’s face. When Ian arrives at the Hunter’s tent, he and Rachel kiss, she slaps him, they argue, they kiss some more. It looks like love to me.
Claire is stirring up a potion and a handsome, charming gentleman brings Laudanum, and some old timey Mucinex equivalent to trade for Cinchona bark. They have an intelligent, philosophical conversation about the limits of man. Jamie arrives and quotes Robert Browning who unfortunately won’t be born for another 50 years give or take. This dude is definitely the most attractive man I’ve seen on this show in a long time and it’s a damn shame when he introduces himself as Benedict Arnold. Claire explains to Jamie what a great man he is but that he will become a traitor. That night a euphoric Daniel Morgan appears to have hit the sauce and is reading pronouncements from General Gates. He strips off his shirt and shows his back that’s covered with scars from being whipped by the Redcoats. I didn’t notice he was that cute till he took off his shirt. So now we’ve got 3 new hunks this season. I’m keeping count.
Rachel confesses her feelings about Ian to her brother Denzell. She’s afraid of loving Ian and her brother points out that the Quakers would ban her which seems mean.
General Fraser is leading his men from the back of his horse when a command is called to kill him which Jamie will not do. Instead he shoots a hat off a random redcoat who happens to be his son, William. The Rebels charge the Redcoats and the Redcoats flee. The Rebels chase them and it’s like watching Band of Brothers but I guess all war is similar with its violence and treachery. Jamie’s so worried about Willie his head isn’t in the game and he’s almost shot, but Ian saves him.
Claire sets Benedict Arnold’s leg and tells him he’s going to General Hospital in Albany and I feel better already because Dr. Alan Quartermaine works there and is a very experienced physician and will surely help him. Claire gives him a pep talk that he’ll be remembered but unfortunately it’s not in a good way.
That night in their tent, Jamie tells Claire he almost shot William. Thankfully, the battle is over and they’re now negotiating the terms of surrender. A redcoat arrives in their tent to bring him to see the dying Simon Fraser. The Fraser cousins clasp hands and reminisce about their younger days. Fraser's death is peaceful with his kinsman with him, surrounded by his men. Claire leaves the tent and sees William whom she gives the 27th pep talk of this episode. Jamie emerges from the tent and ties back the door so that Fraser’s soul can be free. Jamie respectfully gives William a replacement for the hat he shot off his head. It's an emotionally charged scene and William senses that something is up with Jamie, but I’m not sure he knows what ‘something’ is. William is promoted to Captain.
General Gates approaches Jamie and asks him to accompany General Fraser’s body back to Scotland. He will be safely sent along with Claire and Ian on a British ship. Ian tells Rachel he is visiting Scotland and he asks her if she will keep Rollo while he’s gone. I cringe when Rachel tells him she is going to Valley Forge and I sure wish they had LL Bean long johns available back then.
Brianna and Mandy accompany Roger and Buck to the Stones to say their tearful goodbyes. Roger and Buck put their arms around each other and walk straight into the Stones. Back at Saratoga, Rachel sees Mr. Bug who says menacing things to her and I’m freaked out but I don’t think he will try to kill her yet.
Meanwhile Jamie has missed the buffet and casino night and spent most of the ocean voyage vomiting below deck. Claire and Ian lovingly exchange smirks that the King of Men is such a landlubber. Suddenly the ship’s bell rings and they hear shouts of Land A'hoy! and they climb the stairs to the ship’s deck and they all finally see Scotland again.
A Wee Word: What an amazing (half) season this has been! As a long-time book reader, I waited decades for Diana Gabaldon's words to come to life. I hoped for a 2-hour movie, never dreaming we would get this much content. This has definitely been my favorite season since the first one. I know some viewers wanted more Jamie and Claire smooching but as someone who has been with the same guy for 37 freakin years, this is sort of how a relationship evolves. Also, they need to show everything that happens in the books...I know if you disagree, there will be lots of comments about it so let's hear it! :)
Speaking of comments: I've finally got this new website up, although all the bugs aren't worked out yet, but they will be soon. You can now comment below, but sometimes I have difficulty responding but be patient, because respond I will! However, on Facebook, the conversations are coming in fast and furious so you can always hop on over there. Thank you ALL for your comments and conversation. You are encouraging, funny and above all, interesting! https://www.facebook.com/gracesmom48/
I'll be recapping Men In Kilts on this blog in the next day or two, so keep your eyes open for that too!