Outlander Season Two Episode 10 Review: Prestonpans

 

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If I was a mess this week watching Outlander, god knows how I’m going to survive the finale. Knowing the rebellion is going to fail is going to make watching everyone head off for war incredibly painful.

  • Philip John directed this week’s and last week’s episode, and he’s done a brilliant job. I hope he directs more episodes in the future. The battle sequence wasn’t like other battle sequences I had seen before, and the battle being clouded with fog heightened the uncertainty the characters and the audience were feeling in the moment. The opening shot of the single soldier was fantastic. The slow motion and the sound effects were used brilliantly, and created the perfect tense moments.

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  •  Fergus had some of the most heartbreaking scenes this episode, having to watch the men go off to battle while he was left to tend the fires with Claire wasn’t what he thought he should be doing in war, and he sneaks off to join the battle. Along with the shots of Battle , the moments of Fergus clutching his knife in terror as what chaos surround him was a powerful scene, and horrible to see the shock and pain Fergus gets from seeing the reality of war.

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  • I like how the audience felt sympathy for both sides, the sights of the massacred British soldiers demonstrated the horrors of war that both sides had to endure. Dougal’s murder of the British soldier we met last season trying to help Claire was unexpected and sad to watch. Of course the Scottish and the characters have every reason to hate the British army, but outside of the brutality  we’ve seen committed from characters like Randall, this episode showed that many were just men serving their country as they were taught. Jamie’s pissing contest with the British soldier showed not only a much-needed comedic moment, but also a nice human moment between two men outside of their obligations to war just having a laugh together.

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  • Noticeably a lack of Claire this episode, but her scenes were still important and affecting. It showed the pains the women endured, simply having to wait for the men to return, hoping their loved ones would be alright, never knowing how badly wounded the soldiers they treated would be. Claire’s speech to try to keep them busy and focused was a nice moment, I wouldn’t mind seeing more of that later this season.Sam Heughan was incredible this week, Jamie’s role as a leader in war fits the character perfectly and it’s great to see Jamie in a better place in a role he suits so well.
  • “You’ve won a battle but you will never win this war”- couldn’t help but be reminded of a similar  line Robb Stark gives in Season 3 of Game of Thrones, “I’ve won every battle but I’m losing this war”.

 

  • Prince Charles’s weaknesses are truly on display this week, not that we didn’t know already that he wasn’t a strong leader to command such a rebellion, but his inability to make choices and understand the Scottish men around him highlight how doomed this rebellion was. I’ve said it before, but there should be a drinking game for whenever he says ‘Mark me’.
  • The second Claire said goodbye to Angus and Rupert you knew one of the them was going to die, but having Rupert appear to be mortally wounded but then having Angus suddenly die was so unexpected and heartbreaking to watch. Angus was a loved character on the show, and his return last week was so joyful. I’m disappointed we didn’t get to spend more time with the character this season, but it’s not surprising in a big battle episode that the writers wanted to kill a character off. Even with only 50 losses for the Scottish in the battle, it demonstrates how every life lost has devastating emotional consequences. As Claire holds Angus as he dies, it brings the story back to the first line of the episode. with Claire thinking

“How many men had I seen killed in war?”

“Far, far too many”.

Until next week,

Sarah

 

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