Outlander Television

Outlander: “Free Will” Review

Outlander Season 5 2020
Image Source: Variety

Synopsis:

The growing Regulator threat forces Jamie, Claire and Roger to embark on a mission to raise a militia.

 

This episode went down a very strange road, and in some ways I liked it, and in others, I didn’t. The opening of the episode, gave me strong vibes from Season 1 because we got some nice narration from Claire, which I’ve missed in past seasons. I miss knowing what goes on inside the character’s heads, and I feel like it always adds a nice element to the storyline. Also, we got a great moment between Jamie and Claire, when Jamie returns from his travels. What I and many other fans have noticed, is the nice parallel between Season 2, when Jamie says his calman geal prayer to Claire while she is sleeping, and now we have Jamie praying over Claire, in a similar manner, but using the Latin phrase, deo gratias. I really like how the writers are giving us throwbacks to past seasons. They end up having a conversation about how Jamie has to start recruiting men, and Claire doesn’t miss a beat, when she makes clear, that she’ll be by Jamie’s side. This also recalls a lot of what has happened in the past. War has come upon them, and Claire always wants to be by Jamie’s side. For the most part, she is, but then we had the battle of Culloden, and that’s when things went astray. I think this time, Claire is making it clear to Jamie, that she’s not leaving his side again. And thankfully, he knows that he needs her by his side as well.

Now, this is when things start getting iffy for me. Jamie, Claire, Roger, and their recruits, head out to find more soldiers, and while they’re at their camp, they stumble across Josiah and what we find out, is his twin brother. We find out that they have run away from their owners, and Jamie wants to pay for their freedom. This is when I thought the storyline went off course. Could this episode really be all about these non-important characters? Apparently, but in a weird way, I liked the tone the episode continued in. We’ve seen dark episodes before, but nothing like this. This was more like a horror movie, and I kind of liked it. I just didn’t like that this plot was unnecessary. It did show great teamwork from Jamie and Claire and we got some deep conversations from them about the future. We yet again got introduced to themes of abuse and torture, and all I could really think about was Jamie’s own history with the subject. We got a throwback to Jamie getting his brand mark removed, we saw revenge from Fanny’s storyline, and I think this all hit home with Jamie and Claire. This also made Claire reveal to Jamie, that she wants Bree, Roger, and Jemmy to return to their time. I was kind of surprised that she and Jamie didn’t talk more about it, but I guess that conversation was for another time. Lastly, I’m not sure what to think about Jamie killing Mr. Beardsley. It seemed a little out of character for me, but maybe, it’s just because we never really see Jamie kill people all the time. He has done it before, like with Randall and Dougal, but in those cases, it was for protection, and definitely with Randall, it was for revenge. In this instance, I guess it made sense since he didn’t want this man to suffer, but maybe in his eyes, he was completing Fanny’s revenge. This man had been nothing but bad, so if he didn’t want to get treated by Claire, why should he suffer? All, in all, it was a strange episode to me, because it was very out of character, but at the same time, I think the writer’s tried to infuse elements from past seasons. I just hope that we get back on track with the main plotline, and we can start to move the story along.

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