Outlander Recap: “The Battle Joined”


Outlander season 3 premiered last night with “The Battle Joined.”

From the start, Outlander episode 301, “The Battle Joined,” felt disjointed and extremely underwhelming. The episode opens with the aftermath of the Battle of Culloden, and most, if not all of Jamie Fraser’s army of Jacobite Scotish Highlanders lying dead and dying on the field of battle.

Jamie himself, however, is barely clinging to life, as a British officer’s body is draped over him It is through many mini-flashbacks we see the British officer is, in fact, Jamie’s nemesis, Black Jack Randall.

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It is here, the episode jumped the rails toward great storytelling, and the viewer is taken out of the horror of war, or in this case, an actual battle joined, and forced to try and care about the Jacobite rebellion as a whole.

More on the battle, later, as episode 301 spends half its time in 1940’s Boston, where Clarie gives being a good little housewife a try. Clarie and Frank seem, on the outside, to be happy. They’ve purchased a lovely home so Frank can be a professor, and, as was usual during the 40’s, Clarie is expected to cook and clean while her husband is away.

There are few tender moments between Clarie and Frank, but those moments are quickly shattered when Frank attempts to get closer to his wife.

Back in Scotland and the aftermath of the battle, Jamie is taken to the safety of a barn to hide out with the rest of the survivors, but the group is found by the British and told they would be executed. The British officer in charge learns of Jamie’s name and tells him he owes him a debt of honor for not killing his brother, and Jamie is sent in a cart to his familial home at Lallybroch, where his sister is there to nurse him back to health.

The episode ends with Clarie giving birth to her and Jamie’s child, and as Frank shows the new mother her baby girl, and just as all seems blissful and right between Frank and Clarie, the nurse asks where the baby got all her red hair from.

Uh oh.

Next: Outlander returns September 10: Here’s what you need to know for season 3

Outlander season 3 airs every Sunday night on Starz.