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OUTLANDER 3x9: The Doldrums

Superstitious sailors, seasickness, and plague, can really put a damper on an exotic rescue mission.

OUTLANDER 3x9: The Doldrums

Previously on Outlander: Claire found out Jamie was also married to Laoghaire, and now he has to pay her alimony. They send Young Ian swimming to Selkie Island after Prince Charlie’s treasure, but he’s captured by pirates. Claire is unsure if she and Jamie still belong together.

We join the Frasers ready to board the Artemis, in search of Ian. Uncle Jared helped them secure passage with the agreement that Jamie serve as Supercargo, which shouldn't interfere too much with him retching his guts out. They believe Ian was abducted by the Portuguese ship, Bruja, which is headed for Jamaica.

Jamie vows to not set foot in Scotland again without Young Ian. Which is for the best, since Jenny would probably kill him on sight. After the ship has set sail, Fergus appears on deck with Laoghaire’s oldest daughter Marsali, who claims they’re married (actually just handfast, and not yet consummated). Jamie is insistent that Marsali be put ashore and escorted home at their next port, but she says she’ll just lie and claim Fergus bedded her. So, Laoghaire will likely kill Jamie on sight as well. To make sure the marriage isn’t consummated, Jamie insists she and Fergus stay in separate cabins, and therefore he and Claire will have to sleep apart as well.

Jamie’s seasickness makes him pretty pathetic and convinced he’ll be dying at sea. Claire gets started treating injured seamen, but is frustrated by their many superstitions. The Frasers are invited to dine with Captain Raines, but Jamie is too busy puking, so Claire goes alone. Raines tries to explain the sailors’ superstitions to Claire, and why it’s important that they not be questioned, which mainly comes down to keeping things running smoothly on the trip, whether one believes in them or not. Mr. Willoughby has been administering acupuncture to cure Jamie’s seasickness, but they were keeping it a secret, in order to spare Claire’s pride, since her ginger tea wasn’t doing the trick.

Jamie lectures Fergus about his impetuous marriage. Fergus claims to have told Marsali the truth about his past, although maybe left out some previous dalliances. Jamie wishes he hadn’t lied about their courtship, and even after Fergus tells Marsali about the lassies he’s been with, which she’s fine with, Jamie still won’t give his blessing.

The ship loses wind and they quit moving for weeks, which of course, the sailors blame on bad luck. They’re running short on water and rations. The sailors decide to figure out who didn’t touch the lucky horseshoe at the start of the voyage, and they’ll just toss that person overboard. Raines thinks he’ll have to let them do it, or there’ll be mutiny. Jamie says he won’t allow any of his men tossed, but the sailors are sure that Jamie’s man, Jonah, from the Ardsmuir days (who IMDb identifies as Hayes?), is the responsible party. Jamie barely saves Jonah from going overboard. There’s about to be a fight, when Mr. Willoughby launches into his life story, which successfully distracts the crew. Right after Willoughby dramatically tosses his written story into the ocean, the wind picks up, and the voyage continues.

The Artemis then encounters a British man o’war that is signaling they want to board. Raines believes the ship is shorthanded and will try to press into service any British subjects. Captain Thomas Leonard, of the Porpoise, appears to be about 17 years-old. His ship has suffered a devastating plague outbreak. Claire thinks she knows what it is and can help, but Jamie doesn’t want her to go to the ship. But she’s been inoculated against typhoid and insists on going. The conditions the sick are being kept in are miserable and revolting. Claire gives Leonard instructions on how to care for them and contain the outbreak. She agrees to help get them started, but Leonard absconds with her, so she can continue to help them. But it’s fine, because he sent word to Raines, that they’ll provide accommodation for her until she can rejoin the Artemis.

Kilt Drops: 1

A ship full of sailors cannot be an easy place to get it on, but Jamie and Claire manage to find a way.

Wit and Wordplay

“A woman’s bare breasts calm an angry sea.”
‘I beg your pardon?”

“Daddy may think you’re a wise woman, but I still think you’re a whore.”

“What’s a eunuch?”
“I’ll tell you later.”

Sasse-WHAT?

- How about those fun new drums in the title theme? I think I need an umbrella drink!

- The show seems to be choosing to exclude some of the racist incidents that Mr. Willoughby is subject to in the book, as well as having Claire always address him by his given name. Don’t get me wrong, I really don’t wish to watch anyone being subjected to that, but does it seem a bit dishonest on the part of the show?

- Fergus and Marsala brought a trunk of clothes from Lallybroch, including Claire’s clothes from when they lived in Paris. Apparently, Jamie couldn’t part with those memories of her. How useful do we think Parisienne fashions will be on the high seas?

Next week: Shockingly, Jamie is not chill about his wife being kidnapped. Claire faces obstruction aboard the Porpoise.

Kandis Seaver's photo About the Author: Kandis read adult fiction as a teenager and now makes up for it by reading all the YA she can get her hands on. (The swoonier, the better!) She lives in Austin, where she enjoys Wonder Woman collectibles, livetweeting everything, and cocktails with her FYA book club pals. She has never stopped watching Veronica Mars.