Media Madness Monday: The Outlander Edition

media madness monday 1

The Starz series Outlander is finally being aired here in Canada on the Showcase network. Why they chose to air it three weeks behind the American station is beyond my comprehension. It’s really stupid. Anyway, it’s here now. I’ve watched the first two episodes the day after they air. The show is on so late Sunday nights I’d need a caffeine IV to get me through the next day. So DVR I must.

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As for the show itself. I’m tentatively optimistic. I’ve been reading the Outlander series since 1992 (yes, I’m that old) back when I was younger than both Claire and Jamie. I’ve grown into adulthood and beyond with it. So, it’s scary to see the book on television. First, I know that the books are pretty rapey and I don’t like watching those scenes on TV or movies. So far, it’s been…ok. The scene with Jenny was icky.

A quick outline of Outlander, if you’ve managed to avoid it: Claire Randall goes on a second honeymoon with her husband, Frank, to Scotland just after the Second World War. After witnessing a ceremony at some standing stones, Claire stumbles into a Time Warp situation and is propelled in time to 1743. There she falls for Scottish Highlander Jamie Fraser.

The actors playing Claire and Jamie (Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan) are super hot, though older than in the book, not that I have a problem with this. Dougal is much better looking than I imagined. Frank is…Frank. The scenery and setting is gorgeous. How can you go wrong with Scotland though? The clothes Claire gets to wear are so pretty, though uncomfortable looking. I love the scarves she wears. 

The first episode was slow going, much like the book. Frank explains a lot of stuff to Claire about the exact time period she gets sucked into and that information is useful later but makes for dull TV. By the end, things have picked up with Claire navigating the 18th century like a boss. Claire also narrates her thoughts in a voice over. This could be annoying but I think we’d all be lost without it.

I’ve been reading Roxane Gay’s recaps on Vulture and they are hilarious. She’s new to the series altogether and it’s interesting to see her reactions to the show. Check that out.

Now is the time for this series, as womencentric shows are gaining critical acclaim. We have characters like Olivia Pope, The Clones of Orphan Black, Lesley Knope, and now Claire Randall. Hurray for ladies!

10 comments:

  1. I liked the first episode a lot and felt they stayed true to the book, so score! It'll be a while before I get to see the complete season since we only stream...no network. Boo! And I didn't realize Roxane Gay is recapping! I'm ALL OVER that!

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  2. Replies
    1. Yep, Gabaldon says it's "authentic" but in the later books in seems gratuitous.

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  3. WAIT WHAT.

    1) The books are rapey? See! I knew there was a reason I hadn't read them.
    2) There is a character called Jenny in an icky scene? Does she get raped? Is she a serving wench who gets raped? BIG DAMN SHOCK IF SO. (There are no good characters called Jenny, ever.)

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    1. Jenny is Jamie's sister. Don't worry though. She's pretty tough...for a Jenny. ;)

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  4. Revised version of that comment: There are no good characters called Jenny, but if there is by chance a good character called Jenny, something dreadful always befalls her. Probably death.

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  5. I just finished listening to Outlander on audiobook after starting a couple years ago. I wasn't a fan- I just don't get the appeal. No Starz, so I haven't been able to see the show. Would I enjoy better than the book?

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    1. I liked the earlier books more than the later ones. The show are very pretty to watch anyway!

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  6. Love the books, love the show. :-) The first two episodes are good. The ones after that are better.

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