I desperately wanted to LOVE Outlander season two, but ...

Written by: Janet Reynolds



I was as frantic for the finale of Outlander Season 2 as the next Obsessenach. How would they tie up the multiple loose ends? Would this 90-minute episode give us the conclusion we need to survive the always-interminable #Droughtlander? Most important of all, would the finale make me (and other fans I've been chatting with about this) fall back in love with Outlander the TV show in that starry-eyed, absurdly goo-goo way that we still feel about Season 1?

The short answer is no. Yes, the finale was amazing and in many ways the episode we'd all been hoping for. But the reality is that one episode (or even a few) does not a stellar season make, and while impressive in many ways, Outlander Season 2 overall just was not as good as Season 1. Outlander Season 2 suffered from a sophomore slump.

Now, before the hate mail starts coming, let me be clear: I STILL LOVE OUTLANDER in a way that has my husband and family scratching their collective heads wondering where their real spouse/mother went. I am not a fangirl kind of woman, but I fell hard for Outlander and haven't looked back. Despite not having loved Season 2, I will still rewatch it obsessively, will likely re-read both Voyager and Drums of Autumn — again! you know, for "research" — and I spend more time on Twitter and Tumblr checking all things Outlander than even I think is healthy.

I ALSO LOVED THE FINALE. Absolutely stunningly acted by Caitriona Balfe (is there an actress more luminous in emotional range?), Sam Heughan, Graham McTavish, Duncan Lacroix and the rest of the stellar cast, "Dragonfly in Amber," was, with a few quibbles, the episode we'd all been waiting for. Gut-wrenching emotion, well-paced, with — literally — a ray of hope at the ending.

So, mark me, I was so ready for this season to continue to blow my TV mind. I was primed for all the feels, all the time.

And maybe that's part of the problem. I was expecting too much. Because when all is said and done, Season 2 wasn't quite enough to make me fall in love again. We got handed the flowers and chocolates and promises to change, but the reality is that the season overall was erratic and that, my friends, is sophomore slump in a nutshell.
Named aptly for sophomores in high school or university (the teachers here are nodding their heads up and down), a sophomore slump refers to the second effort after an amazing debut. Originally coined to describe students, it's expanded to include athletes who had a banner first year followed by a less distinctive second season, singers/bands who produce a so-so second album after a bang-up first one, novelists who slide after their first amazing book, and, yes, TV shows whose second seasons are just not as good. Sound familiar?

But before we get into what went wrong, let's start with what worked in Season 2:


The acting: So many fine moments in this season. Heughan's portrayal of Jamie as a broken man who crawls his way back to health and sanity to become a leader of men; Balfe's broken emotional portrayal of a woman who loses her child and her man, before clawing every inch of the way to try to stop impending disaster for Jamie and people she loves; Tobias Menzies, starting with that one breathtaking ten-second moment in the first episode when he is told Claire is pregnant followed by plenty of others when he plays his evil twin BJR; Graham McTavish at his brother's death bed, and so on. The list is long and full of wonderful acting - Master Raymond, the Comte St. Germain, Fergus, Murtagh (so fun to see him have more of a role in the TV version). I don't get why none of them got Emmy nods but I'll add that to the list of things I find confusing about Hollywood in general.

The sets: As well deserved, Jon Gary Steele got an Emmy nomination for his work this season. The man is a genius. And unlike say, Game of Thrones, which has a gazillion dollar budget and uses a lot of CGI, Steele makes sets that actually exist in real life. They are places people actually sit down and walk through rather than gesture against a green screen. A few of what could be many examples:

The Star Chamber!


Master Raymond's Apothecary!


The costumes: Terry Dresbach also got her deserved due from the Emmy folks this week with a nomination for outstanding costume design. Her costumes are their own characters and they did so much to make Paris and its intrigue come to life, followed by a sense of homecoming when everyone traveled back to Scotland. I give this season an A-plus for costumes — and I'm not even that much into clothes.


All these accolades aside, it was clear early in the season that all was not quite right in Outlander world. Admittedly Dragonfly in Amber was a more complicated book to make into episodic TV — even Ron D. Moore has lamented this fact. A lot needed to be explained, not the least of which was helping people who haven't read the books understand a - literally - very complicated time line.

But the show seemed like it was on speed almost from the beginning. The pacing was off. Just about any time a moment of emotion occurred — notable exception was the "Faith" episode — we were sent racing on to the next event/intrigue/action twist before we could actually savor what just happened. Take the finale, for instance, after Jamie has killed Dougal with Claire's help. Yes, the Culloden clock is ticking but couldn't we have had five more seconds on Jamie's and Claire's faces as the full horror sets in? I was still gasping when we were onto the next scene!

And while I do not expect the show to follow every single detail that's outlined in the books, I do feel some of the changes/choices that were made were made at the expense of what really makes Outlander tick. I mean, did we really need to see one second of Laoghaire this season?

I'm referring, of course, to Jamie and Claire and their relationship. This is where the tall ship got off course in Season 2, the way in which the pacing and plot choices really hurt the core of Outlander. For whatever reason — perhaps, excited by the intrigue and politics and opportunity for some swashbuckling battlefield scenes — the writers and producers erred on the side of adventure in Season 2. And in doing that, they lost sight of this central fact of the Outlander series: Outlander is not an adventure story with a love story thrown in for good measure. Outlander, beyond all else, is an epic love story in which adventures and escapades take place with and around the main couple, Jamie and Claire. Let me say that again for emphasis: Outlander is a LOVE STORY.

Yes, Jamie and Claire appeared in a lot of the episodes, but the connection and the importance of their relationship — to each other, to those around them, to the story itself — was muted this season. (And, no, I don't just mean the lack of sex and intimacy, although if you missed the post on that, here it is.)

As a result, the center did not hold in Season 2, and that left it wanting in a certain group of the fandom. Here's hoping the producers embrace the real reason this series is so beloved. Otherwise, I worry that Outlander the TV show, decidedly unlike Outlander the book series, will be a one-season wonder. And that would put all of us in a serious slump indeed.

What did you think of Season 2? Did you like it more or less than Season 1? 
What are your hopes for Season 3?

101 comments

  1. I don't think season 2 could be anymore than what DIA was - both a 'sophomore' effort - DIA is one of my least favorite book - so yes season 1 was much better, although Faith was by far (imo) the best episode of both seasons. I agree the the show missed that Jamie - Claire connection but that is what happens why you take a book that is 743 pages or the audiobook almost 39hr and reduce it down to 13 episodes and than decide to waste air time on some scenes instead of what was really important.

    Don't get me wrong I am such a fan of Gabaldon's books and felt RDM far exceed my expectations of bringing both seasons to TV. I will be adding season 2 to my DVD collection and will rewatch it many times.

    I am so looking forward to season 3.

    Great article Janet - it was spot on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Donna. Totally agree re DIA the book being a bit of a sophomore effort in the series. So of course the show would be challenged too. I still think they could have solved for some of that with other choices and pacing. The key is to get back on track
      With Votager which we all would agree is a much better book. One of my faves in the series

      Delete
    2. There were so many wasted scene they could have been devoted to to Jamie and Claire - the king on his throne, the dildos, and so many scenes from Ep208 were a waste. I am going to remain positive for season 3

      Delete
  2. It was disheartening this season feeling disappointed week after week. There isn't really anything I would care to rewatch that wouldn't add to the confusion of why the soul of these books has been eviscerated and the male protagonist emasculated.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ran Rob
      Certain weeks were tougher than others for me. I have rewatched and there are bits of episodes that really sing. We just need more of them!

      Delete
  3. April 2015 was the first exposure to Outlander. I had no knowledge of what it was. After watching the first 8 episodes I was addicted. It's one of a kind, unique storyline. Most importantly to me was the beautiful, rare, intense love story between Jamie and Claire. I couldn't get over what a gift this waseason after years of watching subpar shows. I was in love. Season 1 did have a few issues. Ransom of a man's soul, was traumatizing without the counterbalance of the healing scene in the book. This is where the problems for season 2 begin. I had high expectations for season 2. Number 1 was the continuation of the l I very story. Episode after episode I waited for the connection between Jamie and Claire. It didn't happen. What I found was a constant story line of PTSD, the 21st century problem. It drug on for almost the entire season creating an almost platonic existance between Jamie and Claire. Each episode was painful to watch. The chemistry in season 1 between Jamie and Claire was intense. Season 2 it was completely missing. After researching numerous interviews with the cast it became evident where some of the problems began. Sam Hueghan on a radio interview there werected intimate sex scenes written in early in the show, but he and Cait didn't want to do them and went to the writers and wanted them to pull the sex scenes. Sam said he wanted Jamie played as broken for many episodes. This is one of a multitude of poor choices that were left in the hands of the actors. Almost every interview with the cast they want to dig into the psychology of there character and make choices from there and not follow the beautiful dialouge of the books. The 21st century being interjected into season 2 ruined it. Jamie is a 1700s warrior that watched a man killed at the age of 8 and accepted it as part of life. Yet he couldn't manage to kill his uncle by himself. Yet another change by the actors. After wading through a season all over the place and lacking intense passion I wanted the account settled in the finale with the parting scence to make me want to watch season 3. It didn't happen. All of the bouncing around made me feel nauseous. Most of the 1968 scenes could have been trimmed and deleted. The beautiful night they spent saying goodbye in the book was gone. We were left with 6 minutes of a Ruth in the mud followed by a gift exchange. I don't know if everyone was tired of filming but Ron Moore allowed the actors to figure out the scene at the stones and it showed. Jamie was smiling saying his parting lines as Claire cried. It seemed the whole season was off. After understanding the actors had a huge say in what happened and it shows. The directors and writers in season 1 pulled fantastic performances from the actors. They made changes I loved but the rare, soul mate, relationships anchored the seasonext and left me wanting more. This season I felt it was a constant struggle to watch and I keep thinking this so bad I don't want to watch season 3. I've watched season 1 more times than I can count. I haven't receivedwatched any of season 2 and don't intend to purchase the Dvd. When half your audience leaves you need to ask your self what have we done wrong and fix it. Here's hoping.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Penny
      I don't feel quite as disappointed as you but certainly ended the season hoping like hell hey get back on track and keep the focus on relationship. The first few episodes of season 3 are going to be critical.

      Delete
    2. Damn autocorrect. My apologies

      Delete
    3. I thought the actors have made brilliant choices, beyond all the writers.

      Delete
    4. I thought the actors have made brilliant choices, beyond all the writers.

      Delete
    5. Damn autocorrect. My apologies

      Delete
  4. Fantastic, Janet! You hit ALL of the critical points. So much was there. Certain episodes were lovable, but overall I don't have all the Feels of Season 1. I, too, had watched S1 over and over. I've yet to watch this season in this way. Let's hope with some of these new writers they get that spark back. Maybe with the same writing team as S1, some of the magic was gone? New writers might just be part of the answer. Great article!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Denise
      Thanks for your feedback :) And yes, new writers just might be the answer here....especially if they read some of what we fans write as constructive criticism. :)

      Delete
  5. Fantastic, Janet! You hit ALL of the critical points. So much was there. Certain episodes were lovable, but overall I don't have all the Feels of Season 1. I, too, had watched S1 over and over. I've yet to watch this season in this way. Let's hope with some of these new writers they get that spark back. Maybe with the same writing team as S1, some of the magic was gone? New writers might just be part of the answer. Great article!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Over all I really enjoyed season 2. That being said, I missed Jaime and Claire. I missed their intimacy with each other. We saw what they were doing, but the writers seem to have forgotten WHY they were doing those things. The why is what to me was missing. Cutting out the year at Lallybroch...really took away from the story. Extending Jaime's healing outside the abbey....took away from the intimacy of Claire and Jaime. I didn't need the sex scenes...a lot can be communicated in a look, in a smile, in a touch.... In season 3 I hope they bring that back.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Over all I really enjoyed season 2. That being said, I missed Jaime and Claire. I missed their intimacy with each other. We saw what they were doing, but the writers seem to have forgotten WHY they were doing those things. The why is what to me was missing. Cutting out the year at Lallybroch...really took away from the story. Extending Jaime's healing outside the abbey....took away from the intimacy of Claire and Jaime. I didn't need the sex scenes...a lot can be communicated in a look, in a smile, in a touch.... In season 3 I hope they bring that back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chris--with you 100 percent on the bring back the real Jamie and Claire. That is the reason this season fell flat for me overall.....although I am still rewatching and all that :)

      Delete
    2. Lallybroch was a big sore point for me. We spent what 3 episodes dealing with Jamies PTSD and a voice over dealing with Jamie and Claire losing Faith, they were at Lallybroch 8 months but we have to rush off to the Fox's home to a lot of foolishness.

      Delete
  8. Trying again after inadvertently deleting my entire post. (Oh to have an undo option on my iPhone for Blogger).

    I feel your pain, but I wonder what the lovers of Book DiA feel about S2? It's my least favorite of all the novels, as the impending sense of doom and separation hurts my heart. I'd gladly read the first few chapters of The Fiery Cross over and over rather than the read DiA once more.
    The fabulousness of the finale helped me to mostly forget any issues I had with S2. I have Ep 201, then Faith, then the finale as my S2 take-aways. Another great piece, Janet!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Teddie
      Yes DIA is kind of Gabaldon's sophomore slump of a book IMHO....and that certainly contributed to the issues of the show. I suspect that may be what RDM was referencing when he said it was a hard book to adapt. No one wants to suggest every word DG has written isn't gold :) I say this having reread DIA twice and listened to it once on tape...

      Delete
  9. Janet - your piece was very well written and spot on. I totally agree. I began reading the books after the start of Season 1 and loved the show and the books. I liked Season 2 (not loved) and some of the changes that were made to adapt it to screen. The crux of the problem is, as you have noted so well, the connection between Jamie and Claire was off. Season 2 was a visual feast with the wonderful sets and costumes, but the love story was lost. I will be eagerly awaiting Season 3. I disagree with the comment in another post here that "half the audience has left". My husband now watches it with me and he began reading the books too. He is not usually a big fan of "love stories" so there is plenty of action and adventure for the guys. If this trend continues, the audience could double!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My husband got more into this season too I wonder if he likes the battles. Although he certainly liked those love scenes from season1 😏 I doubt they've lost too much audience either but I do think they need to hit it out of the park in the first few episodes of season 3.

      Delete
  10. Agree. Writers got the adventure/love story mix wrong: too much adventure not enough love story. For adventure we can watch Game of Thrones or Black Sails. The Outlander series is an epic love story. They have two leads with terrific chemistry who weren't given enough time or space. Yes, Jamie and Claire lead an adventure filled life but through it all they loved each other with a constancy and intensity we want to see.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With you all the way Claudia. I wonder if Maril agrees. I feel as if Ron got too excited by the battle and time travel bit. We shall see. Fingers crossed.

      Delete
  11. Janet,
    Your lips to God's ears. All of this... ALL of this. As others have said, the book wasn't my favorite either so they made do with what they had. However, some creative liberties could have been taken to strengthen the Jamie and Claire story while still tending to the scheming and battle strategy. Voyager is definitely a stronger book and I can't wait to see what's in store!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ashley. Voyagee is one of my fave books in the series. It should be "easy" to do well and bring back the center, i.e. Jamie and Claire. Hopefully Ron gets it

      Delete
  12. JBLIPPMAN:

    A lot of feelings about Outlander Season 2 and the season overall. Everything keeps coming back to not enough time to absorb important moments or for a long, loving gaze at Jamie and Claire’s relationship. Would now be a good time to start the hashtag #SplitVoyagerinhalf ?

    Ultimately the difference between this adaptation and any other is the exceptional quality of the source material. The show writers are really great, and TV writing is a different skill set from novel writing, but the fact that DG kept coming back to elaborately descriptive scenes of emotional and physical intimacy between Jamie and Claire should be reason enough to do the same in the TV adaptation. As Julia Roberts says to Cameron Diaz in My Best Friend’s Wedding, “Don’t mess with THAT one. That’s a SIGNATURE move.”

    With more time, RDM could adapt the storyline to his heart’s content without losing the one thing that no other book series has ever had. And we could sit with the important moments for more than 2 seconds before having to move on. Like touring the LOUVRE at a gallop.

    But, ok, Maril says 16 eps is too hard on the cast and crew. So fine take a month or two off in the middle or only do half a book per series. But another season where an action packed plotline is prioritized above faithfulness to DG’s portrayal of this ineffably rare relationship would be to miss the point of choosing THESE books in the first place.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I also agree on the pacing. The Louvre at a gallop-- perfect description! We all could likely pick 5-10 moments in a heartbeat where they could have eliminated or shortened to give more time to other emotional things. Claire as a dentist? Why? Let's hope the producers are listening to what we fans are talking about as they plan Voyager. I wonder if they will combine voyager and Drums a bit since they know the are doing both? Might be a way to get around the 13 episode challenge

      Delete
  13. Love your post! I, too, am obsessed. But there were times when I sighed out loud when the camera looked away too soon. I have my own "bones to pick," but they're my own, and I don't want to sound whiny. But there were too many times I should have been reaching for tissue and I my eyes didn't have a chance to well up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup Anne. Speed was the issue repeatedly here. Will be fascinating to see what's on the cutting room floor

      Delete
  14. For me, there are favorite episodes and scenes in both seasons. Some episodes are excellent, I'm glad Ive seen them, but are too painful to watch often. There are others, or parts of others, that I'm obsessed by. For me, the biggest gaff has been the inclusion of some scenes that arent important, in place of time spent with Jamie and Claire. I don't agree with some, in that I do feel the intimacy between them, but I do miss scrnes that are physically intimate. I enjoy them, and I think their physical relationship is one of the things that strengthens their relationship. The spend that time together to process events and cement their relationship. I am sure that the team has heard the feedback, snd I hope they take it seriously. Ron said that they all consider the intimate relationship a core part of the show. I hope that comes through, I really do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, yes and yes Waverly. There are many ways to show intimacy--some of them physical with sex and some just in conversation, a touch, a glance, etc. They erred on the side of leaving that out this season.. Hoping hoping hoping Voyager and season 3 gets that back. Otherwise why would Claire go back?

      Delete
  15. For me, there are favorite episodes and scenes in both seasons. Some episodes are excellent, I'm glad Ive seen them, but are too painful to watch often. There are others, or parts of others, that I'm obsessed by. For me, the biggest gaff has been the inclusion of some scenes that arent important, in place of time spent with Jamie and Claire. I don't agree with some, in that I do feel the intimacy between them, but I do miss scrnes that are physically intimate. I enjoy them, and I think their physical relationship is one of the things that strengthens their relationship. The spend that time together to process events and cement their relationship. I am sure that the team has heard the feedback, snd I hope they take it seriously. Ron said that they all consider the intimate relationship a core part of the show. I hope that comes through, I really do.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thank you Janet for summing up pretty much how I felt about season 2. I missed the intimacy between Jamie and Claire. Intimacy does not always mean sex though. Between Jamie's childish behavior, PTSD not withstanding, and Claire's shallow manipulative behavior the two seemed caricatures of their former selves. The latter half of the season was much better. The moments like their parting before the battle of Prestonpans or Jamie's prayer to a dreaming Claire were more like the true Jamie and Claire that I expected to see and missed. Regardless of what is going on around them the central theme, to me, has always been the strength of the relationship between Jamie and Claire. That relationship was sadly lacking for much of season 2. I hope that season 3 gets back to the bond between the two quickly. I do not want to see more time wasted on Laoghaire or even Frank. While I despise the former I do not dislike the latter. I just feel as though both are simply insignificant except as literary tools as obstacles for Jamie and Claire to overcome. That is how I see them when I read the books. Which, by the way, I read after watching season one. And as far as the detractors who dislike the books being mentioned in conjunction with the television series I say poppie-cock! Regardless of what you can or cannot portray between the two mediums the fact remains that the series is called Outlander. The booksbooks are the source material for the series. Otherwise the series would be called something else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mona
      I think you can enjoy the books for the books and the show for the show, so I agree that people should not get all hung up in who likes which. I personally like each but for different reasons. Anyway, we are ALL hoping season 3 gets back on track....the first few episodes are going to be key to show us....

      Delete
  17. Thank you Janet for summing up pretty much how I felt about season 2. I missed the intimacy between Jamie and Claire. Intimacy does not always mean sex though. Between Jamie's childish behavior, PTSD not withstanding, and Claire's shallow manipulative behavior the two seemed caricatures of their former selves. The latter half of the season was much better. The moments like their parting before the battle of Prestonpans or Jamie's prayer to a dreaming Claire were more like the true Jamie and Claire that I expected to see and missed. Regardless of what is going on around them the central theme, to me, has always been the strength of the relationship between Jamie and Claire. That relationship was sadly lacking for much of season 2. I hope that season 3 gets back to the bond between the two quickly. I do not want to see more time wasted on Laoghaire or even Frank. While I despise the former I do not dislike the latter. I just feel as though both are simply insignificant except as literary tools as obstacles for Jamie and Claire to overcome. That is how I see them when I read the books. Which, by the way, I read after watching season one. And as far as the detractors who dislike the books being mentioned in conjunction with the television series I say poppie-cock! Regardless of what you can or cannot portray between the two mediums the fact remains that the series is called Outlander. The booksbooks are the source material for the series. Otherwise the series would be called something else.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Enjoyed your post and the comments I read are completely spot on. I agree. My problem with S2 was the lack of urgency to save Jamie and Claire for the sake of their love. I felt the urgency to save the Clans, to save Scotland and to save Frank but what about saving Jamie and Claire? The lack of connection between the two characters all season did not help to communicate the urgency of their mission. Where were their late night conversations? Where was their humor? Where were the moments that solidified the strength of a bond that would be devastating if broken? For example, after Faith, why was there no conversation about trying again? About being afraid of whether they could conceive again or not? At Lallybroch, could we have been let in on their plans for the future? Would that have added an extra emotional layer on what they were fighting to preserve; the future they envisioned? At Prestonpans, Claire had no idea whether Jamie, himself, would survive, so where was the fear that this could have been the last time she saw him? Could there have been an intimate conversation about Jamie's fear of losing everything? The eve of Culloden, they are both running around in their own arenas. They could die tomorrow and there was not one single moment for their emotional connection. The writers appeared to have them both on their own missions but never bothered to connect them back together. And in my opinion had they interwoven this desperation to hang on to each other, the fear of losing each other, the necessity to be with each other through the entire season, it would have heightened the emotional turmoil in the finale when all was lost. Because prior to going to the stones, it just felt like the war was lost; there was not this impending fear that their love could be lost.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agree with you on every point....The finale was emotional but man it could have been so much more emotional with more about their relationship first.

      Delete
  19. I love Outlander!
    But I agree with the above post

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love Outlander too---that's why I wrote the post. I'm hoping that if enough people comment and that this idea gets out into the internet that RDM or Maril or whoever will see it and get back on track in season 3! I want all 8 books to be on TV!!!! :)

      Delete
  20. I love Outlander!
    But I agree with the above post

    ReplyDelete
  21. April 2015 was the first exposure to Outlander. I had no knowledge of what it was. After watching the first 8 episodes I was addicted. It's one of a kind, unique storyline. Most importantly to me was the beautiful, rare, intense love story between Jamie and Claire. I couldn't get over what a gift this waseason after years of watching subpar shows. I was in love. Season 1 did have a few issues. Ransom of a man's soul, was traumatizing without the counterbalance of the healing scene in the book. This is where the problems for season 2 begin. I had high expectations for season 2. Number 1 was the continuation of the l I very story. Episode after episode I waited for the connection between Jamie and Claire. It didn't happen. What I found was a constant story line of PTSD, the 21st century problem. It drug on for almost the entire season creating an almost platonic existance between Jamie and Claire. Each episode was painful to watch. The chemistry in season 1 between Jamie and Claire was intense. Season 2 it was completely missing. After researching numerous interviews with the cast it became evident where some of the problems began. Sam Hueghan on a radio interview there werected intimate sex scenes written in early in the show, but he and Cait didn't want to do them and went to the writers and wanted them to pull the sex scenes. Sam said he wanted Jamie played as broken for many episodes. This is one of a multitude of poor choices that were left in the hands of the actors. Almost every interview with the cast they want to dig into the psychology of there character and make choices from there and not follow the beautiful dialouge of the books. The 21st century being interjected into season 2 ruined it. Jamie is a 1700s warrior that watched a man killed at the age of 8 and accepted it as part of life. Yet he couldn't manage to kill his uncle by himself. Yet another change by the actors. After wading through a season all over the place and lacking intense passion I wanted the account settled in the finale with the parting scence to make me want to watch season 3. It didn't happen. All of the bouncing around made me feel nauseous. Most of the 1968 scenes could have been trimmed and deleted. The beautiful night they spent saying goodbye in the book was gone. We were left with 6 minutes of a Ruth in the mud followed by a gift exchange. I don't know if everyone was tired of filming but Ron Moore allowed the actors to figure out the scene at the stones and it showed. Jamie was smiling saying his parting lines as Claire cried. It seemed the whole season was off. After understanding the actors had a huge say in what happened and it shows. The directors and writers in season 1 pulled fantastic performances from the actors. They made changes I loved but the rare, soul mate, relationships anchored the seasonext and left me wanting more. This season I felt it was a constant struggle to watch and I keep thinking this so bad I don't want to watch season 3. I've watched season 1 more times than I can count. I haven't receivedwatched any of season 2 and don't intend to purchase the Dvd. When half your audience leaves you need to ask your self what have we done wrong and fix it. Here's hoping.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I was able to completely exist in the moment while watching season 2...letting go of the book and fully inhabiting this incredible world. When I saw the original Dior bar suit at the Met Museum costume exhibit, I just couldn't believe that Terry and company were given the freedom and the budget to let their imaginations run wild...and I got to go along for the ride. This series is unmatched by anything I have ever seen on TV.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Joyce
      While obviously I've read the books, I really do try to take the show for the show itself. I'm not a book purist. That said, of course, I can't turn off half my brain so maybe my ideas are colored by the books. I believe., however, that I'm trying to analyze the show for the show itself and in that context, I feel it too often raced through emotions and that one of the casualties was the relationship that I think is central to the success of the show AND the books. But I agree there were many wonderful moments in Season 2...

      Delete
  23. Well...here is the thing...I LOVED SEASON 2. While there are things here and there I might have done differently -- because, you know, in my spare time I fantasize about being a TV producer -- actually a producer at Outlander -- I really love it all. I have re-watched all the episodes at least 5 times. I see the J&C moments of intimacy. Sometimes they are very subtle and it was a slow burn given that the show had to deal with J's PTSD, but they are there and I savor them. I loved the political intrigue and battle scenes and the awesome, awesome characters -- new and old. I salivated over the luscious costumes and sets and then the landscapes when we were back to Scotland. I really just LOVED_IT_ALL. So, while I respect other's views that Season 2 did not live up to Season 1, I have to say for me -- I don't agree. Both were exquisite in their own way. And, given how complicated DIA was to adapt, I am amazed how well it as brought to the small screen. Sam and Caitriona are Jamie and Claire to me. I gasp whenever they share the screen whether or not they are being intimate at the time. It's electric. Sex or no sex, they are Gabaldon's lovers -- to me anyway -- and it is and always will be, Jamie and Claire's story. So, I don't agree with the other commenters or the post in general -- although a joy to read because of its style and substance. I will happily and without regret, criticism or avarice re-watch Season 2 throughout Droughtlander and relish every frame. No sophomore slump for me. It was a triumph and, Outlander, I am completely under your power and verra happy to be there!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anne--I was expecting to hear from you :)
      And I know there are others who are in your camp too, which is great of course because we ALL want Outlander on TV to keep on going and going and going....All of the books please :0
      And I agree re Cait and Sam overall. I wonder what would have happened if they had been allowed a little more time, though, in those incredible moments. I would love to see the cutting room film. Maybe we'll get a hint in the DVDs....

      Delete
  24. Janet, I'll join the chorus - fair and balanced and well written. You hit on the key points and one of them is where I think Season 2 got out of rhythm from what we had in Season 1. It is in part because DIA is more of an all over the map story line but I think Ron and the directors chose to emphasize the breadth of the story instead of the heart of the story and it not only made for a more bumpy ride it also dulled the love that we shared with Jamie and Claire in Season 1.

    I appreciate the difficulty in cramming so much story into so little time, but I'd rather have a little less racing and a little more lingering.

    All that said - I still loved it and can't wait to see Voyager.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EbonyRaptor--well summarized. And yes I am still a fan for sure :)
      And those of us who have read Voyager know good things are (potentially) coming.

      Delete
  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I was not implying that each medium could not be enjoyed for its own sake. I love both the TV series and the books equally. I have already pre-ordered DIA on Amazon. I was simply trying to point out that the books are the source material and, as such, should not be discounted because one prefers the TV series. I agree with Diana Gabaldon that each has its merits as to what can be done. I am not a book purist. My point was that it does not make sense to discount the books. Otherwise call the TV series something else and write your own story. As we were discussing the merits of season 2's pacing and storyline I was simply using the books pacing and storyline as my reference. I apologize if I did not make that point clear. I too am an Outlander junkie in all of its forms. 😉

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mona

      I understand. Overall we are lucky to have two different mediums for this story. How many times does that happen?

      Delete
  27. I was not implying that each medium could not be enjoyed for its own sake. I love both the TV series and the books equally. I have already pre-ordered DIA on Amazon. I was simply trying to point out that the books are the source material and, as such, should not be discounted because one prefers the TV series. I agree with Diana Gabaldon that each has its merits as to what can be done. I am not a book purist. My point was that it does not make sense to discount the books. Otherwise call the TV series something else and write your own story. As we were discussing the merits of season 2's pacing and storyline I was simply using the books pacing and storyline as my reference. I apologize if I did not make that point clear. I too am an Outlander junkie in all of its forms. 😉

    ReplyDelete
  28. Janet, your title sums up my feelings about Season 2. I felt the lack of the loving connection between J and C. I don't blame it on DIA being hard to adapt though. So much wasted time put on added stupid plots and Laoghaire, chess games, Claire's flashbacks to her incident in WWII. They had plenty of time. RDM and co had plenty of time to do things better. Penny M is correct about actors (whom I still love especially Sam) being partly at fault. Read, watch, listen to the interviews where they talk about changing characters, love scenes, killing Dougal! The writers added things and changed things at their behest to the detrement of the love story. Allowing Sam to play "The King of Men" as a shell of himself for 3/4 of the Season diminished him. Then his clever words and ideas became hers in the episodes. They became a lopsided power couple. They needed some kind of living reconnect after Faith, a little more time of happiness at Lallybroch, a better parting scene. I needed to believe there was a strong enough reason for Claire to leave her daughter and the modern world to go back to Jamie. This is supposed to be a love story that survives decades! I am not in here just to rant and complain, though after loving Season 1 so much, I felt a huge sadness at having to endure some episodes in Season 2. I just want to make a plea to the Outlander book fans and tv viwers alike to make a plea to RDM and all involved to listen to critiques. I know many loved Season 2, a lot didn't. A few of my fellow viewers gave up and quit watching! Please let Voyager be better. Think about balancing pain with love and healing. Don't give us a Laoghaire/Jamie lovefest! Let J and C have a reunion worthy of an epic love story in extraordinary circumstances!!! (I did not say romance Diana Gabaldon ☺).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree it was interesting to see where they gave Jamie's words to Claire--and I'm not sure it worked well overall for showing the relationship. I am hopeful that some of what the fans are saying will get seen online and that it may make a difference in bringing things back to the real focus--Jamie and Claire. And I too hope they don't make more of the Laoghaire thing. It really was not a big rift in the books. I for one will be really mad if they make it a big deal in season 3

      Delete
  29. Janet great insight,I liked season 2.,but they should have shown us a better side oh J&C's relationship not sex,but more togetherness as in the book,that was my complain!Also C came across very manipulative the love was more for F not J.The scripts weren't really evolving the real Jamie,hope it'll be much better in Voyager,yes DIA is not an easy book to adapt! I'm feeling a bit sad & sorry for myself,about Droughlander so roll on season 3.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Season 3 can't come soon enough! I'm listening to Drums of Autumn now (already read twice) to get through droughtlander. Ugh

      Delete
  30. I agree the time taken by the Laoghaire scenes in Season 2 could have been better spent on any number of other scenes. However, "Leg Hair" does play a more pivotal role in Voyager so I'm resigned to seeing more of her next season.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Leghair is unavoidable in season 3 😩 I just hope they don't make it more of a rift in the tv version. In the book it's over quickly.

      Delete
  31. A voiceover would be great to just skip Jamie and Laoghaire thing! They loved to use voiceovers to rush things in Season 2 like the "healing" after Faith.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Hi Donna and Janet,

    Thanks for the great post. I agree withe the 'sophomore' label (even though I'm not American) for the TV show. However, I loved the book! I loved the mystery- why would Claire go back to the 20th Century?- and then wonderful love story at the end when she leaves and the final- Jaime lived!
    Now, I still love outlander the TV show, and will watch it again. But I dream of the few tweaks that could have made it wonderful.
    The TV season'e slump was set up in the first 2 episodes and never really recovered. The first episode meant that there was no plot for the whole season. They chose to focus on 'will they change history?/ do they stop Frank's birth' and told us the answer 'no' in the first 10 minutes. So all the manipulations and plotting had no tension, no drama. It was really a waste of time, and C+J just looked silly trying over and over again to do something that we all know fails.
    The only tension left is- why would Claire ever leave Jaime- what happened? But this was not explored in the TV season as well as it was in the book. In episode 2 Claire and Jaime have a gross love scene that ends in a blood bath with BJR. It was their longest sex scene in the season...... The lack of healing in 116 and lack of connection in most of season 2 with C+J was a real shame. We need to see why this relationship is so important. WE needed to understand why 20 years later Claire is still desperately in love with Jaime.
    They also kept characters/ plots that did not advance the story at all that they could have spent on Lallybroch and C+J - Annalise, the whole Lord Lovat episode/ King's bowel motions.

    Anyway, as you say- the acting was fantastic. The music, sets, consumes and world building were wonderful. Looking forward to Season 3!!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Kitty--you are totally on the money about the first two episodes and how it deflated the potential tension of whether they will succeed....The book certainly did that better and the relationship generally.....and I had forgotten about the interminable number of minutes devoted to the king on the throne--literally. We ALL could have found better things to add with the minutes devoted to that and the dildoes....sigh...

    ReplyDelete
  34. If I'm totally honest with myself,as much as I love the series, I have been frustrated by the pacing and plot choices since the end of 1a. We lost almost 30 minutes in The Search that could have been used at the Abbey leaving S2 with more room for the Jamie and Claire relationship. Also, I do think that the framing device which works in the book because of the time given to the historical research and the slower build to the revelation that Jamie might have survived, should probably have been discarded. I can imagine several ways of ending on a hopeful note even with Claire returning thru the stones in the last episode.

    On another note, thee last moment of the finale....with the sun and the dreamy glow lighting Claire's face....there must have been some kind of joke behind that.. I don't get it. I also agree that Claire would never have been so insensitive towards, Bree to blurt out "I have to go back" in that moment. It must be some insider's joke. Please tell me from where.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hinda
      I totally agree re that last minute with the light and also Claire blurting out guess I'm leaving you Brianna....it was overdone with the literal ray of hope and I agree Claire wouldn't be that sensitive.

      Delete
  35. If I'm totally honest with myself,as much as I love the series, I have been frustrated by the pacing and plot choices since the end of 1a. We lost almost 30 minutes in The Search that could have been used at the Abbey leaving S2 with more room for the Jamie and Claire relationship. Also, I do think that the framing device which works in the book because of the time given to the historical research and the slower build to the revelation that Jamie might have survived, should probably have been discarded. I can imagine several ways of ending on a hopeful note even with Claire returning thru the stones in the last episode.

    On another note, thee last moment of the finale....with the sun and the dreamy glow lighting Claire's face....there must have been some kind of joke behind that.. I don't get it. I also agree that Claire would never have been so insensitive towards, Bree to blurt out "I have to go back" in that moment. It must be some insider's joke. Please tell me from where.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I haven't seen mentioned anywhere why Season 2 was only 13 episodes instead of the 16 that Season 1 had. Even with a 90 minute finale, there's still 150 minutes that Season 2 didn't have. That time could have been used to address much of what has been talked about here.

    Does anyone know why 13.5 episodes instead of 16?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maril has said in an interview that 16 is too hard on the cast and crew--too long--and since they have two seasons lined up, there wouldn't be enough down time in between.

      Delete
  37. I am also a bit disappointed in season 2, which I found to be inferior to its former, and wanted to chime with a couple of my own reasons:

    First, although Sam is a terrific actor, he has not been given the opportunity to properly capture the raw, complex character of book Jamie. Overall, his personna has been watered down and emasculated (mentioned here already), ultimately influencing his relationship with Claire and throwing off the entire dynamic of their marriage. There is less passion, less intimacy but a whole lot of PTSD in their places -- very much opposite of the book. I, too, am stricken by the incredible love story in the books but feel like it's getting the boot in season 2.

    Second, there is way too much adaptation in season 2. Few episodes, really more like a couple, stay true to the storyline, thus skewing and confusing everything. You have Rupert, who is supposed to be dead, waltzing around with a pirate eye. Collum, who is one of the first Highlanders to die, is at first traveling with none other than Laoghaire and then making guest appearances left and right. Dougal is way too involved and omnipresent in comparison to his minor book role. Black Jack is refusing to marry Mary and then beating the hell out of freshly passed Alex. Claire is ready to take off her pewter wedding ring for Frank and is consistently letting Jamie "go."

    Supposedly, there was no time to include a farewell night between Jamie and Claire, but there was plenty of time to showcase Dougal's soliloquy to a still-there Collum.

    I could go on and on, but all of these character alterations and storylines made it difficult for me to get involved. I have not re-watched any of the season 2 episodes, even though I wish I could have.

    I am not sure where season 3 will go, but I hope it does so in a retroactive direction toward the more loyal episodes of season 1.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All excellent points. We can all likely find spots where the producers could have made cuts to get back to the true story of Jamie and Claire--the core of the story here. I have to say that some of the interviews that have occurred recently do have me a bit concerned re how they'll be handling season 3. Voyager is a much more linear book and easier to adapt I think but they've already hinted we'll be seeing a lot of Jamie and Claire's stories during their time apart. I for one do not need to see a lot of Claire and Frank in Boston.....

      Delete
  38. I could be totally wrong about it, but my sense of it is that most people who are engaged enough to post in Outlander Blogs are book readers. I am and it seems all other comments here are from fellow book readers too. So, perhaps our opinions on Season 2 are somewhat more critical than non-book readers because they don't know what they're missing, so to speak. That's not to imply our opinions aren't valid, only that we come at it from the perspective of having to live up to the books whereas Ron Moore and the directors have to try to find that sweet spot between staying true to the book and keeping the TV audience hooked.

    I think all book readers would agree that the main story line is the J&C love affair and the adventures swirl around that. And for us romantics that is compelling enough. However, I wonder if the adventure aspects of the story aren't taking, if not precedence, then maybe a little more air time than we the book readers would want, but that it's by design - not merely a failure of RM and directors to understand what the book readers want. There may be more of "them" (non-book readers) than us (probably so by a large margin) and their objective is to increase market share, not necessarily to tell a wonderful love story.

    As others have said, Voyager is a linear story line that could/should be easier to adapt then the jumpy DIA, but it's certainly not without enough adventures to make a whole season of them. Throughout Voyager the white hot passion between Jamie and Claire is center stage. Let's hope RM and Starz realize that is the fundamental story line and not use the swash buckling adventures of Voyager to draw in new fans at the expense of the love story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think this is a great and interesting point. It may be an instance in which being a book and TV fan works against us. STILL, I hope RDM et al get back to center with Jamie and Claire and the love story; that is the core around which all the adventure circles. And I am a little worried based on some interviews I've read about giving us a look at Claire and Frank's marriage and then there's that whole Laoghaire thing showing up in season 2. I really hope they don't get too involved in that particular thread in season 3.

      Delete
  39. Janet, I too am not feeling that Season 3 will be any better. The article in Variety about Season 3 made me roll my eyes and sigh. Talk of "having to learn to love again" and "eventually" finding their way back. It sounds like a long road to the Printshop. And probably another disappointment like the quick parting in Season 2 Finale. It's sounds like an adventure cruise to the Caribbean mostly. Voyager has that, but the reunion is essential. I find from reading the actors' comments is that they don't get J+C connection. They are not ordinary people. Don't portray them as that. Is it ordinary to time travel through magical stones? No! We can connect with them as flawed human beings enough to get they will have some hurdles. They are supposed to be a fantasy couple in my view. The King of Men and his only true lady love. I don't expect much but ships and voodoo for Season 3. I highly doubt any sex/love scenes on par with Season 1. Unfortunately, I also believe the shippers and social media have affected the leads' lives to the point where they don't want to do the love scenes. I don't think think RDM and Co care what we think or want.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sigh....I am REALLY hoping you're wrong but am worried you may be right. I have wondered about the impact of shippers/social media on the actors, too, and really hope this is not true. I am sure it's harder than we can even imagine to have your life made so public so suddenly. On the other hand, don't hope you "make" it as an actor and then be shocked when your every move is examined/hypothesized about etc. I mean, doctors don't anticipate this will come with their chosen profession. But actors? Come on!

      Delete
  40. I'm not an "expert" on Outlander, I just read (& loved so much) Voyager! In the book, also, we have a long long road to "printshop" and that Jamie's period - Ardsmuir prison, Lord Gray, Halwater esperience, the years in the cave - is so emotional! I admit I'd like to watch Claire's life with Frank, I often was asking myself about them during reading... We have time to enjoy and to prepare to "printshop". You do know it'll happen, it's there, no-one takes it off us ;-) I agree, Outlander is a rare soul's love story, but it's not only love, for my part is deepest human emotions, painful land's history, landscape sky-high, adventures, irony. At the heart of emotions, Jamie & Claire's story SHINES LIKE A DIAMOND. LONG LIFE OUTLANDER ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Manu--I'm on board with hoping for a many-seasons run for Outlander on Starz. Trust me. I am there with you! And there are no Outlander experts--not to worry. We all speculate with our best theories and responses. Glad you shared yours.

      Delete
  41. Wow....I could not agree more with this.
    Don't get me wrong...I love Outlander...it's just that season 2 fell flat for me too. I loved the setting and the costumes... Maybe my expectations were too high....but the storyline was complex and somewhere along the way...the central relationship between Claire and Jamie felt lost. Oh well....hoping season 3 gets more on track. In the meantime....I will go binge watch Season 1 again so I can experience all the feels again

    ReplyDelete
  42. Korie--I'm doing a fair amount of rewatching of season one too---just more to draw you in I think. The more I've thought about this and read other people's comments, the more I think part of the issue is the book itself. DIA was also a bit of a sophomore slump for DG too. Couple that with some choices by the producers to change the focus and you've got something that's less enthralling.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Read Maril Davis interviews on Three if by Space. More excuses about "time". It makes them sound like the team that can't manage time and really bad at planning. The "grown up" marriage. So lame. The Sesson 3 sneak peaks are scary. Maril and Cait say the romance will be different because they are older. So if the 20 somethings weren't really having a good sex life, what are they going to do in their 40s and 50s? Hold hands? They also mention will take several episodes to reunite then have to learn to love each other again? Am I the only one that thinks this bunch doesn't really get the characters? RDM thinks se have to have Frank to understand Claire??? Read his Twitter Q&A from June. I am guessing that Diana Gabaldon's input as consultant is very limited. I would be insistent that this is not true to the characters. They have been lost without each other for 20 years! Why would Claire go back if she really was only in love with "the ghost" of Jamie? Sure things have changed and happened but it is an enduring love. I would say get ready for some aggravation in Season 3! It is now an adventure show. Voyager is that but the reunion is key. Sorry to be the Debbie Downer but if I had read some things that gave me more hope it would be different. Like "what the romance explode again"! Like Season 1. No. It's it will be different because they were older. Season 2 should have included the sex and intimacy and bonding of the young couple. They had a depressing time but they had passion to unite them and their deep connection to pull them through. And Jamie was tough as nails warrior with a rare heart and intelligent. Show more of that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree with you 100% and am concerned about season 3 as well. The core is Jamie and Claire and their relationship--end of story. And one of the appeals of the books is how how strong that relationship is as they age--how it evolves, its intimacy and, yes, its sex. I'm rereading Drums of Autumn right now and it's soooooooo clear and strong in the book. It's why people love this series so much. The producers need to get back on track.

      Delete
  44. We don't yet know where RDM will take Season 3 but I think we book readers may be better off trying to enjoy the TV series on its own merit, apart from our expectations as book readers. Maybe that's not possible. It certainly will be difficult. I have the sense that if I had not read the books I would have enjoyed Season 2 more than I did and probably the same can be said for future seasons. RDM and Starz are going to take their product where they think it has the biggest audience and if that emphasizes other aspects over the J&C relationship than that's the calculated risk they've chosen to take, and maybe it's the correct choice for their objectives.

    I guess the thing I come away with is that we still have the books and we were treated to a wonderful Season 1 that met our expectations for our Jamie and Claire. Everything else may not be as good but we can still try to enjoy the TV series, only with tempered expectations.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EbonyRaptor
      I totally get your point. It's, of course, hard to "unread" the books. I do work hard, though, at recognizing they are two different mediums and that each has to present information differently. I also agree that it's about managing expectations. They created a certain message with season one and then hyped it up before season two---that EW cover alone suggested more Jamie and Claire time was on the way; the various interview references to the honeypot. But then they actually presented a very different version than the hype. They're already being very careful about season 3 in what they say--making it clear that the reunion will not take place for several episodes, that we're going to see a fair amount of backstory on Frank and Claire....and I assume Jamie in the cave and (it pains me to type it) Laoghaire. So I'm on the page of tempered expecations too. It's still damn fine acting and a great story.

      Delete
  45. Great, spot on writing Janet.

    I have been very disappointed with S2 and the lack of intimacy J&C displayed.
    That lack of connection, the lack of the quiet moments and small conversations, the diminishing of Jamie and making Clarie the strong leader and giving key thoughts and line that should have been Jamie's to Claire all are things that took the joy out of this season.

    Along with the other scenes already listed I think we could have also done without most, if not all of the Foxs Lair. We never saw the Young Fox again so why waste our time with him? That way would could have had significant time at Lallybroch and maybe been able to feel a little more like Claire truly had a reason to long for, and come back to, Jamie 20 yrs later.

    I think there are a couple of things that make me feel like dumping the show altogether. One is continually being told to put the book down or remember it's an adaptation. Then two sentences later we're being told they had to do [whatever] that way because it's in the book. RDM et al need to chose to play it one way or the other.

    The other thing I am tired of hearing is now we are seeing maturing characters... grown up love. It feels like they are playing into every sitcom troup of now we're married we don't have sex any more, we don't talk anymore... 'he' just reads the paper and 'she' just shops... they just roll their eyes, say funny one liners and wish they were young again. Stereotypical television, but as we all know that is not our J&C. As it has been said much better in this thread, that attitude is an insult to the characters and to those of us who are fans.

    Finally I just want to throw in here, as much as the costumes were to die for and the sets were breathtaking, I would not miss any of it for a minute if they would have skipped all that splendor and gave me the story I loved.

    RDM has made it a point to say often that he doesn't listen to fans. So I don't hold out a lot of hope that S3 will be any better. I am to the point where if S3 goes down as it sounds like it might, I *will* just go back to my book... and cancel Starz. Outlander is the only thing I ever watch, and yet I pay extra for that channel year round.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, yes and yes! I find the comments that suggest book readers are incapable of dealing with the TV version super annoying and condescending. Ditto for those on the production team who've suggested we're prurient for taking note of the lack of sex and intimacy--two different but important things, people--in the second season. You're right when you say going down that road makes Jamie and Claire's relationship a stereotype--the exact opposite of what they portrayed in season one that brought them such acclaim and also the exact opposite of what DG created in the books. I'm rereading Drums right now and J and C are still evolving, still equal loving partners and, yes, still having sex.

      Delete
  46. OMG! I could not agree more with you about Season 2. Where was the passion? Really, where was it? The writers certainly shortchanged the character of Jamie this season and when they did write for him, it wasn't the Jamie we know and love. Having said that, I will always continue to watch the TV show.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not giving up either. They would really have to something awful for me to abandon the show. That said, I hope they give Jamie back his mo-jo and allow Claire and Jamie to be front and center of the reason the show even exists!

      Delete
  47. OMG! I could not agree more with you about Season 2. Where was the passion? Really, where was it? The writers certainly shortchanged the character of Jamie this season and when they did write for him, it wasn't the Jamie we know and love. Having said that, I will always continue to watch the TV show.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes I will watch too--which I guess they know. We diehard fans are going to keep going. But boy oh boy I hope they get back on track for Season 3!

      Delete
  48. Hi Janet:

    I'm coming a little late to the party as I just found your summary today for the first time. I had to comment because I 100% agree and felt just as you did. I didn't really feel the show got going until episode 5 when BJR reappeared and even then it was spotty after. That episode finally showed some real emotion between J & C so missing till then. I watched season 1 and loved it before reading the books. I may not have read the books at all were it not for season 2 missing all the things in season 1; the passion/love story between J&C. I tell you this so you know even from a non book reader (till mid season 2) I did not really like the second season compared to 1. Season 2 left me being so confused as to what was happening. So I read DIA (which I loved as I see others here were not so thrilled) and it kept me watching season 2 anticipating some things to happen on the show (that never did unfortunately). As to sex scenes I too wanted it more similar to the books and season 1, but I realize it must be hard to film as actors. I have seen interviews of them discussing how they had to lock themselves in a room all day and how awkward they really are. And with cable TV leaving much less to the imagination than regular TV can, perhaps that all has an influence on the lack of sex in season 2? I hope they find a happy medium so we get the passion/sex (at least a semblance of it) and love between J & C in Season 3. I do hope they stop with giving Claire all the good ideas that book Jaime had and even his lines. I got the sense in the books he was showing her the way of his time while the show changes made her look smarter and he was just following along. Of course, she came from the future and was smart, but she had to learn the way of the times from him and he seemed to be endlessly explaining this to her in the books making her realize why she shouldn't do or say something. I found the book more realistic in this way. When the show had him in PTSD for so long it felt like he was following Claire around in the first episodes and took away from his character. It just dragged on too long and he was not coming across as warrior Jaime in the book or of season 1. I think Sam is such an amazing actor and really hope they give him his due in Season 3. He will be separate from Claire so he will have time to shine on his own. I love Cait too. But,I often wondered since Cait received award nominations for season 1 if it was why they chose to give her even more of the lines. I don't mind seeing a little of Frank in season 3 because of 20 years she had with him but hopefully no more than the book - please. I think we need to see it wasn't such a good relationship and thus how she pined for Jaime. I think Jaime has a lot more going on in his 20 years and I would like to see that. But will anxiously await their reunion and forward. I hope Season 3 is as good as the book or at least season 1. Good writing will be needed like in season 1. They already have an excellent acting cast. Fingers crossed and excited to see it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Renee
      Voyager is one of my favorite of all the books--there is so much good material there and they really could do a wonderful job of both showing Jamie and his development/heartbreak and Jamie and Claire's wonderful reunion. What a love story! I worry they will get off track and make too much of the Jamie and Laoghrie story....but we shall see. That print shop scene had better be done right!

      Delete
  49. Just came across your blog today flitting through Outlander stuff on the web.

    Here's a question I have. Why can't we demand a better product from Starz and Ron Moore? Why do we have to be satisfied with either the books or the TV show as told by Moore and co.??? Why can't it be a mix that celebrates the voice and perspective of a female character on TV? I think it's sad that Starz thinks it can't sell the show based on that and have to broaden their audience to more men. It's even more sad that the women involved with the show are going along with it. Then they complain about there not being enough female stories on TV!

    Last June when Anne Kenney and Maril were on Twitter, I sent Maril a series of tweets about the J&C bond through lovemaking being the soul of the show and that it was missing in season 2. She did not like my tweets at all. She was dismissive of me in her replies, insinuated I was complaining about the lack of sex, and annoyed that fans weren't appreciative of all the hard work and long hours in arduous conditions they put into the show. She then begged off and ended our Twitter exchange. I lost a lot of respect for Maril that day. She knew damn well what I was talking about, but chose the party line instead of just being honest about the changes made in season 2.

    What I hope for season three is everyone gets the hell back on FOCUS and remember they're telling the story of Jamie and Claire. It's not about money, awards, making careers, shipping, or avoiding risque love scene. IT'S ABOUT THE STORY.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hannah
      I do think the powers that be kept trying to suggest that those of us who complained about the lack of intimacy and sex were somehow prurient and not getting the point.....I couldn't disagree more. That's selling us short about our analytical abilities. It was always about the relationship; sex is just one way Jamie and Claire showed us their relationship. It wasn't the only part. But all that intimacy was lacking in season 2 and that's just a fact. I'm hoping they get back on track in season 3. The book certainly offers plenty of wonderful material. Fingers crossed!

      Delete
  50. It is sad if the creators really aren't aware what might have been missing between season 1 and 2?? Did they realize it wasn't as well received? I'm sure they work hard and I cannot imagine how difficult it is to make, but it seems the majority felt a big change from season 1 and 2. Was it writing, directing, storyline changes, editing??? Whatever the powers that be or whoever was in charge in season 1 got the show right but something went off a bit in 2. I'd like to think they listen to fans if its majority.

    The show didn't seem to get the awards nominations this year; maybe there's a reason?? I love the actors and I think they do an award worthy job, but the acting was not the problem it was other things with the story, I think. I hope they can bring back the magic of season 1. I really want the show to do well. They don't have to get detailed with the visuals on the intimate stuff. Just give us a idea it's there and the attraction and closeness it brings these two characters and strengthens their bond. They have a ton to cover in the second part of Voyager. They will have to leave things out, but as long as we feel a connection to the two main characters and don't get things like the foxes lair where we get a second here or there of things just so they touch on the book but doesn't seem to flow or make much difference. I heard they hired some new writers maybe that will help?? I agree the book offers plenty of good material and it would be great to see them stick close. I just so want to see these books played out in the same spirit as the books. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oops, I meant the SHOW played out the same spirit of the books.

      Delete

    2. great spell caster
      i want to thank God for using DR MARVIN as my source of saviour after 2year of joblessness and my lover left me alone for 2 years,Have just been heart broken until i go in contact with DR MARVIN after i saw a ladies testimony on how she was helped by this same DR MARVIN,So i decided to get in contact with him and when i told him all my problems he laughed and said this is not a problem that everything will be ok in 3days time.Exactly the 3rd day my ex lover called me i was shocked and what surprise me the most was that a company i applied for over 4month called me and said i should resume work as soon as possible.Am so grateful to dr trust if you wish in contacting him MARVINLOVESPELL011@GMAIL.COM or is cell number +2349059897314. He do cast the spell as following

      Delete
  51. Life is good when you have your love ones around you, I am saying this because when i had issues with my lover i never seen life as a good thing but thanks to Dr. AGBAZARA of AGBAZARA TEMPLE, for helping me to cast a spell that brought my lover back to me within the space of 48hours. My husband left me for another woman after 7YEARS of marriage,but Dr.AGBAZARA help me cast a spell that brought him back to me within 48hours. I am not going to tell you more details about myself rather i will only advise those who are having issues in there relationship or marriages to contact Dr.AGBAZARA TEMPLE through these details via; ( agbazara@gmail.com ) or call him on Whatsapp: +2348104102662

    ReplyDelete
  52. Well, I'm coming at this rather late in the game, but wanted to say you hit the nail on the head. It's a love story, period. If the focus isn't on that, their sacrifice, endurance over 20'years of trials and unhappiness, and their ultimate reunion simply won't have the tremendous emotional wallop that the books provided. I just re-watched (binged, actually) the final 6 episodes of Season 2. The finale did make up for a lot of the emotion and passion that was lacking. One major problem, which only became more glaring on a second viewing: the actress playing Brianna cannot act, certainly not at the level of the rest of the cast. She sticks out like a drama student who belongs on a CW vampire show. She has zero chemistry with the actor playing Roger, and at no time was she convincing as Claire's daughter. She is a lovely girl, but repeating lines like "You're so like him" and copper colored hair does not a Brianna make. Maybe they should send her to acting school for the duration of Season 3, or just have her study her exemplary cast mates in action.

    ReplyDelete

Back to Top