Outlander: Review: Series 1 Episode 13: The Watch

Outlander 1.13Jamie’s secret is threatened as Claire helps Jenny…

Douglas Henshall dominates this episode of Outlander as one of the best drawn guest characters in the series, a well written and played man of many facets. He imbues McQuarrie with such an unpredictable nature that you really are not sure which way he’s going to jump particularly when he learns the “truth” about the disappearance of one of his men. I’m really hoping that this isn’t the last we see of him.

From various comments online, it’s clear that this episode deviates significantly from the original Diana Gabaldon novel (that’s why it’s called an adaptation!), but having not read that since it first came out, I can only judge on what happens on screen. It’s an episode in which not a lot actually happens – if you think about it, McQuarrie could have been at Lallybroch to deliver Jamie to the Redcoats based on what we saw at the end of episode 12 – but we get a chance to see Jenny and Claire bonding during the birth, and Jamie see possible futures. His vision of a life with Claire and children is rudely dispelled by Claire’s talk of being infertile (although presumably that could be Frank rather than her?), and McQuarrie does present an interesting promise of battle, murder and sudden death…

Hopefully, though, this will bring to an end the constant talk of a price on Jamie’s head, and bring Black Jack back into the fray…

Verdict: Although it could have benefitted by being pared back by a further 10 minutes or so, The Watch moves the story forward into the season endgame. 7/10

Paul Simpson

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