Outlander: The Birds & the Bees

"I know it's a surprise, but we'll explain it all later."

The best episode of the season.

Awkward, realistic, and so funny. Jamie finally met his grown daughter while he was outdoors pissing against a building, and mistook her for an aggressive hooker. And somehow, the scene had every bit of poignancy it could possibly have. Sam Heughan and Sophie Skelton did a lovely, lovely job with this scene.

Jamie looked totally scruffy, too, because we don't usually get to prepare for life's big moments. Brianna also looked rumpled after the horrible night she'd just had, and of course, both of them cried. Much like Claire's arrival in "A. Malcolm," Bree was prepared, while Jamie just got one of the biggest shocks of his life.

And I really loved every scene with the three of them finally together for the first time. Like the family dinner with essentially three generations around the table: Jamie and Claire, Bree and Ian, with Murtagh in the grandfather role. Ian's easy acceptance of his newly arrived cousin. Bree asking Murtagh for embarrassing stories about Jamie as a child.



The bee hunt was lovely, too – a hunt with no blood or death. What a life-affirming father/daughter activity and so sweet, pun intended. It gave Jamie and Bree time alone to talk, to get to know each other, to try to set a course for their new relationship. Interestingly, I also liked all of the discussion about Frank. It certainly made sense that Jamie and Bree would be thinking about him in this situation. And the transplanted bees were a metaphor for Bree herself, transplanted to a new time and place, adjusting to life in a different century with a father she never knew.

Of course, Claire picked up on the fact that something was wrong with Bree, and guessed that she was pregnant. It would have been bad enough if Bree was just dealing with losing Roger, the possibility that he had returned to the twentieth century without her. The fact that the baby is almost certainly Bonnet's makes it so much worse.

And here is where it all went off the rails.

Yes, I totally understand why Bree wasn't able to talk about what happened to her, especially while adjusting to this brand new family situation she has found herself in. But because Lizzie saw the bruising and blood and Bree arguing with Roger, because Roger arrived at the worst possible moment... this sort of "lack of communication" plot contrivance was more than just inconvenient. It was infuriating. Jamie could very well have killed Roger because no one told him the truth.

And now what? What will Ian do with Roger? Whatever it is, it won't be good.

Couldn't they have just been happy for awhile?

Bits:

— This was the first time Sophie Skelton was in the same frame as both Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe, and I was impressed by how much she looked like she could be their daughter.



— Turns out Bree is a good shot – because of Frank.

— Whiskey-making. An interesting family activity.

— A "bree" means a disturbance in Gaelic.

— Roger took a couple of gem stones from Bonnet in lieu of pay. Smart thinking.

— Claire thinks Lizzie has malaria.

— How long until Jamie finds out about Bonnet?

Quotes:

Jamie: "What do you want here, lassie?"
Brianna: "You."
Jamie: "Sorry, lass. I'm a married man."

Jamie: "She's..."
Claire: "Our daughter."
Jamie: "Brianna. Your cousin."
Claire: "I know it's a surprise, but we'll explain it all later."
Ian: "When it comes to you, Auntie Claire, I've learned it's better not to ask too many questions."

Claire: "We could make sure we're never in the cabin the Sunday before January twenty-first."
Jamie: "Every year for a decade?"
Claire: "Make a holiday out of it."

Give me strange time traveler problems for a hundred. Jamie is right that they haven't had luck changing history until now, that it undoubtedly won't be so simple.

Brianna: "Reminds me of Daniel Boone."
Jamie: "A man you ken from your time?"
Brianna: "I don't know him, only of him. And no, he's… actually, he's alive now."

Murtagh: "You've suffered enough pain in your life. I'm glad for you, lad."

My favorite episode of season four by far, except for the ending. Four out of four bees,

Billie
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Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.

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