Outlander “Lallybroch” Episode 12 (original airdate April 25, 2015) Let’s start by saying there were plenty of visually stunning scenes in Episode 12 of Outlander — some beautiful (the cinematography of Scotland in this episode is breathtaking), some horrifying (the floggings) and some just downright nasty (Randall schlopping out his ballocks, OMG). The episode opens with lavish panoramics of the Scottish hills and seaside —simply beautiful. As the aerial views zoom closer to land we see Claire and Jamie on horse making their way to what we presume to be Lallybroch, Jamie’s ancestral home.
Claire and Jamie playfully chat. Probably a good time to know how old your wife is, so Jamie (Sam Heughan) asks. Claire’s 27. Jamie’s surprised. He guessed her much closer to his age or younger. “So when I’m 40 you will be 245?” Not even close, Claire laughs. The two stop from afar and take in the view of Lallybroch, a picturesque setting of a charming, warm castle. (Production note: The Lallybroch exteriors were actually shot at a property close to Edinburgh called Midhope Castle, which was built in the 15th century.)
“It’s like you always said it was,” Claire (Caitriona Balfe) says in awe.
But his memories are marred. Jamie has a flashback; it’s the whipping at his home and his sister being harassed by Jack Randall — a permanent scar. Claire observes the pain in his face.
It’s behind you now, it’s in the past, she comforts.
Jamie’s unnerved. He expresses his concerns of rumors he had heard from Dougal on his sister Jenny giving birth to Randall’s bastard child. He’s reluctant to see what awaits.
Another flashback takes us back to that horrific day but this time we see what’s happening to Jenny. As Jamie was being whipped, Randall asked if she’d prefer to go into the house and offer him a better form of entertainment. Jamie’s thoughts are interrupted by Claire saying hello to a young toddler sitting outside of Lallybroch. A face not familiar to Jamie.
A pregnant Jenny (Irish actress Laura Donnelly) comes round the corner and drops her laundry basket at the site of Jamie. She runs to him and they embrace. “Four years and no word?” Jenny asks with the most adorable Gaelic accents yet, as she lovingly slugs he brothers arm. [Production note: Donnelly says she has known Heughan for almost 13 years having worked together before, so the family bond seems quite real for both of them.] But Jamie’s preoccupied and looking downright disgusted at this young 4-year-old at Jenny’s side.
Jenny takes note and excitedly introduces the young man as Wee Jamie, and tells the lad that this is the uncle he is named after. Jamie’s insulted. He asks Jenny why she had to name him after him.
“Why? Why would you name him after me?” Jamie demands. “You don’t think I’ve suffered enough for all that happened that you must name Randall’s bastard after me? To be reproached for as long as I live?”
But Jenny’s is a force of nature and almost feistier than Claire (is that even possible?) and is equally as hurt and insulted by his assumptions. “Correct me brother if I’m wrong, but I have a strong impression you’re saying I played the whore to Captain Randall.”
“I would be rather dead in my grave then see my sister brought to such,” Jamie tells and he looks down at her pregnant belly with disgust asking, “Whose is this one? Having ruined yourself for me is shameful enough, but another one? With no father to give them a name. We shouldn’t have come.”
Whoa, whoa, whoa Mr. Assume A Lot. Jamie’s rattling off far too many accusations without even giving his sister a chance to speak. Claire realizes this and starts to interject but Jenny’s ready to take him by the balls and hand him a new one. Literally. (OK, I love this girl.) Jenny holds up her hand signaling for Claire to zip it and says, “Tell that trollop” to keep out of our business (or something like that). Well, that doesn’t go over well.
“She’s my wife and you speak to her with respect,” Jamie charges, and turns away, but not fast enough as Jenny grabs his arm spinning him around to ask. “Do I have to do what I had to do when we were bairns [that’s Scottish for children]? Grab you by the balls and make you stand still to listen to me.”
Jamie is close to humiliation. “You’re now trying to shame me in front of my own wife,” he seethes.
“Well if she’s your wife I imagine she’s more familiar with your balls than I am,” Jenny responds. “Don’t test me brother.”
Last she saw him, Jenny explains, he was bloodied and broken, strung up by his wrists in the archway leaving her to think he was dead and this is how he comes home. “Whose child is the boy?” Jamie demands.
“Mine. And that one too,” a one-legged man states from behind. It’s Ian Murray (Steven Cree), Jamie’s soon-to-learn new brother-in-law and longtime friend. Jamie and Ian fought together in France, when Ian lost his leg.
“You always knew how to make an entrance,” Ian kids. They laugh and embrace. Claire sidelined through all of this, introduces herself to him as “the trollop,” who is also known as Claire Fraser. Jamie realizes he was mistaken and turns to Jenny, but she stops him saying, “A damn fool and not a day wiser in four years.”
They gather in the parlor, and Ian tries to soften the awkwardness between Jamie and Jenny by sharing spirits. Jamie breaks the silence asking, “What happened with Randall? I want to know. I need to know.”
Jenny obliges. “I’ll tell you once, and never again.” Ian pops off his leg and settles in for the story. Another flashback begins, this one narrated by Jenny.
As Randall finished whipping Jamie he knocked him out with a punch to the face. He then took Jenny by the hand and led her into the bedroom. We watch as Randall smells Jenny and parts her lips and inserts his bloodied finger into her mouth, taking her hand and placing it on her genitals. Ugh. Jenny gags, so do we. [Tobias Menzies is so good at making us hate him.] She grabs a candlestick and clocks him with it, but that really sets the sadist off. Slapping her and throwing her onto the bed, Randall begins to undress. And then OMG, he flops out his manly appendage (and that sack of ugliness is huge) and tries to ready himself for the unthinkable. As Jenny realizes what’s about to happen, and sees him struggling to get that thing up, the only thing she could do was laugh at his incompetence.
He slaps her. She continues to mock him laughing even harder. “I don’t know why, it was the only thing that came to my mind to do. But he didn’t like it, when I laughed, and I could see that, so I laughed some more.” And then he grabbed her, threw her head against the wooden bedpillar knocking her out. “When I woke up he was gone. And that’s the last I saw of Capt. Randall.”
”You satisfied,” Jenny asks, and looks for an apology. Claire chimes in thinking Jenny deserves an apology, but Jenny’s all to quick to remind, “This is between my brother and me.”
Jamie excuses himself and asks to speak with Claire, where he explains. “I’m your husband you must not embarrass me in front of my family and my servants.” Claire tells him he’s doing a fine enough job by himself. “You have a sharp tongue Claire and there’s a time and a place for it.” He asks her to trust him, as this is his family, his land and his time. “I’m laird and you are my lady, we should both conduct ourselves as such,” he tells
Claire reminds how she’s not the meek and obedient type. Oh, Jamie knows. “Don’t think anyone would ever make that mistake Sassenach.” Jamie tries to sway Claire by speaking of Colum’s wife who is a strong and respected woman, but never crossed her husband in public, but behind closed doors — watch out.
The two rejoin Jenny and Ian where Jamie takes Jenny by surprise telling of his plans for staying despite the price on his head. Him staying means Jenny and Ian need to vacate the master bedchamber, as it’s reserved for the laird. Jamie recounts his memories of the room with Claire, “when he tiptoed” into the room as a young boy to see his father’s chambers. His father is buried out in the graveyard next to his mother and brother Willie. Claire asks Jamie when he last saw his father, which takes us to another flashback.
“It was at Fort William, a week after I had been flogged the first time,” Jamie explained. While the English guardsmen were dragging him into Randall’s chambers, he ran into his father in a hallway. His father had known he was flogged and went to Randall in his defense. Jamie apologized to his father feeling he had disappointed his father, as he was left in charge of Lallybroch when his father left. But there was no time, the guards needed to get Jamie to Randall.
“This is my son have you no compassion?” he asks the guards. “Remember to pray. I’ll stand by you no matter what happens” and his father kisses him on the cheek.
Once in Randall’s chamber, Randall tells of his meeting with Jamie’s father and his father’s disappointment. “Your charges are such a serous nature you cannot be bonded without a written clearance from the Duke of Argyll. Bur Randall tells Jamie that even if his father succeeded in getting a clearance, it would be impossible for him to make it back in time. In the end Randall was clear on what he really wanted, and that was Jamie (makes sense now why he was having problems back with Jenny).
“It’s a shame we got off to such a poor start,” Randall told Jamie. And then he asks the unthinkable. “Give over to me, make free of your body and there will be no second flogging.”
His wounds were so raw as his first flogging was just a week ago. Jamie explained how he thought of going through it all again and waiting for the next lash, and thought that being raped would be less painful and over quicker, and he’d be set free the same day. Claire comforts him, as he continues to explain how he could still feel his father’s kiss on his cheek and how he thought what would his father think of him, if he did, and not the rape but more so letting Randall break him. He couldn’t do it. And then the sound of the cracking of the whip starts, and we see Jamie go through a horrific flogging, his skin falling off his back, blood dripping everywhere. It was so devastating his father actually collapsed and died, as he witnessed it.
“I didn’t see him die. I didn’t see him taken away. I didn’t see him buried,” Jamie says. “Never even seen his grave.”
Later the couples dine together where Jenny questions Claire’s experience on running a house, which would be zero — Jenny tells her she has much to learn. If you haven’t noticed, Jenny’s not real warm on Claire. We learn that the estate is in debt and they have had poor harvests for the past few years, so the rent from their tenants is deeply needed. Luckily Quarter Day (rent collection day) is scheduled for the next day. Unlike at Castle Leoch, where Dougal and his men would venture out to collect the rent, at Lallybroch the tenants come to them and pay. Claire expresses concern for such a public affair with Jamie’s outstanding warrant, but Jenny shares that their tenants are like family and would never think of sharing anything with the British no matter what the reward was.
As the day arrives it’s festive indeed. The tenants shower them with gifts and kind wishes. Spirits are flowing and Jamie’s feeling good. One of the tenants, Duncan, can’t pay his rent. Jamie tells him he can settle up next quarter, as he’s certain things will be better. Duncan appreciates his mercy.
While the men conducted their business, the ladies were working outside. Claire witnesses a Mr. MacNab disciplining his young son Rabbie by slapping him across the face quite brutally. Claire finds the punishment quite abusive and engages with MacNab, eventually asking Rabbie to come with her for some food. Once inside Claire sees that Rabbie has been beaten and looks to Jamie to do something about it, but Jamie wants to continue in the celebration. Later in the evening Jamie returns to their bedchambers — rip-roaring drunk — where he tells Claire that he showed MacNab the difference between discipline and abuse.
Jamie’s got one fierce hangover the next morn. As he sits in the dining chambers with Claire, Jenny comes bursting in questioning Jamie’s interactions with the MacNab’s and him not collecting all of the rent. How at ease will the tenants be when the entire estate goes under because they can’t make their own payments, Jenny asks. “And, you saddled us with another mouth to feed … Robbie MacNab. His father threw him out, thanks to you.”
So first day on the job of being laird of Broach Tuarach (Lallybroch) didn’t prove to be real successful for Jamie.
“Do you think life just started when the two of you just walked through the door,” Jenny charges. She explains how she had been working on one of the MacNab family members to take the boy and question why they wouldn’t even talk to her before he pulled out his fists.
Next problem for the laird? The bread takes like shit because the mill’s not working. Jamie thinks he needs to fix that problem too, so he heads to the mill, disrobes and jumps into the freezing water to dislodge something from the mill wheel. Claire disapproves believing he’ll freeze to death. Jenny comes running to warn that the British are coming. The ladies sit on Jamie’s clothes to hide ‘em and try to move the English soldiers along, but one of the soldiers is experienced in mill wheels and looks to help. Just as the girls start to panic, Jamie frees the wheel, staying hidden under water, but prompting the Brits to leave. Jamie pops his naked body out from the freezing stream, cupping his privates, so his sister can’t see. He asks Jenny to kindly turn around “before my cock snaps off.” Too late — well, not too late for, he does stay intact — but Jenny sees his horribly scared back and runs off.
Later in the evening, Claire and Ian have a heart to heart on dealing with the Fraser disposition. “Their hearts are as big and soft as their heads are as big and strong,” Ian explains.
So what does Claire do with Ian’s bit of insight? She marches into their bedchamber and pulls the bed sheets out from beneath a sleeping Jamie sending him tumbling to the floor. “I did not marry the Laird of Lallybroch,” Claire sternly states. “I married Jamie, but I haven’t seen much of him since we walked through the gates of this place.”
Jamie tries to defend himself, but Claire will have none of it until she’s finished.
“You’re trying to be somebody that you are not and in the process you are wrecking the family that you do have left,” Claire tells him. “If you’re not careful you are going to lose them too.”
Her words resonate. Soft music, a sunrise and Scotland’s glorious landscape give time for reflection. Next we find Jamie visiting his father’s grave, when Jenny approaches him. They both have heavy hearts and look to make amends. Jamie starts first giving Jenny the rent from the tenants and apologizing for not consulting with her about the McNabb child they are now feeding. But Jenny tells she’s the one who has wronged him and tearfully expresses her shame.
“Ever since father died a small dark part of me has blamed you for his death,” Jenny confesses. When they told her what happened at Fort William, and how Randall had flogged him and seeing that killed father, she thought Jamie must have done something to bring it upon himself. “Shot your mouth off or acted without thinking of the consequences as you have done all your life,” she said. “But then, out at the mill pond, when I saw the scars on your back – scars made by a lash laid down with such fury. It was me; it was my fault that Randall beat you so. That day when Randall came here, when he took me upstairs if I hadn’t mocked him that way, if I had given him what he wanted, he wouldn’t have treated you like he did. And then father …”
She breaks into tears and Jamie embraces her. Jamie tells her that he did anger Randall at Fort William, when he denied him of what he sought, and how he’s spent the last four years of his life blaming himself for their father’s death. But now they know better, it’s neither of their faults – “there’s a devil in that man” and the only man responsible for putting their father in his grave is Jack Randall.
Jamie tells Jenny that we would have gladly died to spare her. But the spitfire, Jenny, counters: “If your life is suitable exchange for my honor, tell me why my honor is not a suitable exchange for your life? Are you telling me I may not love you as much as you love me, because if you are Jamie Fraser, I’ll tell you right now it’s not true.” The siblings smile at each other. And Jenny says, “Welcome home Laird Broch Tuarach.” [the Fraser home]
The episode comes to a close with Claire saying she’s beginning to feel like she actually belongs here with Jamie. An amusing exchange between the two follows, including Jamie’s fondness of her “lovely round arse” that was tucked against him, when they first met. He wanted her the first moment he set eyes on her. “Now I wake up every day and I find that I love you more than I did the day before,” he shares. And Claire returns the gesture, saying simply, “I love you.”
And as much as we would have liked the episode to end on that note …the next morning, Claire wakes pleasantly content. She exits the bedroom chambers and looks down into the castle foyer to see Jamie being held by gunpoint by a group of men.