Outlander has a Brianna problem?

image: tvline.com

I was going through my saved articles on Google the other day, when I came across this one. I definitely see where the author is coming from, but I don’t agree with everything, and their argument is confusing at times. I’m going to try and make sense of it here.

Let’s rewind to the beginning of this season for a bit. The only reason Brianna went through the stones at all was because she missed her mother. And I mean, who wouldn’t miss Claire? She’s just the right balance of maternal and practically fearless. Brianna probably wasn’t thinking about what living in the past would entail. She was listening to her gut feelings. So when she arrives in the eighteen century, she’s almost totally out of her element. Which is why I have a problem with this:

As I feared, Outlander doesn’t really engage much with Brianna’s cognitive dissonance of suddenly living on a plantation, surrounded by slaves. Much like the show often does with Jamie and Claire, she’s written in a way that attempts to absolve her of any accountability. 

Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, AV/TV Club

Brianna is just trying to learn how to live life in the 1800s, and all she really wants is for Roger to come back to her – not to mention she probably regrets what was said during their brief first fight as a married couple, because at the end of the day, she still loves him.

So, I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect Brianna to examine the conscience of the white man and regret what has happened in history. And anyway, the show obviously wants to focus on Brianna and Roger’s relationship because 1) it’s a really good storyline and 2) Brianna and Roger are basically #relationshipgoals.

And I’m sorry, what’s this about Claire being “written in away that absolves her of accountability.”? If anything, Claire is very aware of history, and perhaps unlike Brianna, she’s never afraid to speak her mind. She literally tells Jamie that she can’t own slaves. And obviously, Jamie listens because he knows that his wife knows what she’s talking about (she’s from the future, for crying out loud), and owning slaves doesn’t exactly sit right with him either once Claire gives him a piece of her mind.

Frank wasn’t exactly a saint …

At the bottom of the article, almost as an afterthought, there was a bit about Frank:

I love when the show shouts out how good Frank was, because if we’re being honest, Frank was a really, really good guy! He handled his wife longing for someone she met while time traveling incredibly well!

Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, AV/TV Club

Don’t get me wrong, Frank really loved Brianna, and that was nice. In the books, their relationship is adorable. It’s only natural that Brianna wouldn’t know how to feel about Jamie at first. But that’s as far as Frank’s relationship with Claire went. If I remember correctly, when Claire came back after going through the stones the first time, her made her burn all of her eighteenth century clothing. He wanted her to completely forget about Jamie. Obviously, she couldn’t do that, and he was jealous. I’m not saying Frank had no right to be jealous, but he could take a page from Edward Cullen’s playbook.

In The Twilight Saga:  Eclipse, Bella kisses Jacob before the battle so that he doesn’t go into it with hurt feelings because she’s going to marry Edward. Edward heard Jacob’s thoughts, of course. When Bella says “I don’t know what happened,” Edward tells her “I do; you love him.”

Maybe if Frank were able to understand that Claire also loved Jamie instead of expecting her to forget about him, they could’ve at least coexisted better.

How do you like them apples, AV/TV Club?


One response to “Outlander has a Brianna problem?”

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