“The Company We Keep” sees the Frasers & the Mackenzies solving issues both military domestic
In “The Company We Keep”, Outlander delivers it’s zippiest, action packed episode in ages. Roger (Richard Rankin) takes the militia to Brownsville. Instead of the warm welcome he expects, the Browns are ready to shoot the entire company. Seems Isaiah Morton (Jon Tarcy) got down with Alicia (Anna Burnett) Brown and they weren’t married. Roger’s idea is to put them off by giving them Isaiah and getting them drunk. When Jamie (Sam Heughan) arrives he’s less fond of this idea than Roger has anticipated.
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In the meantime Brianna (Sophie Skelton) gets a scare that not only is Bonnet back but he’s on to Jemmy. She understandably freaks and has to be talked down by Marsali (Lauren Lyle) in the BFF scene we truly deserve. The Frasers themselves are trying to figure out what they’re going to do with the Beardsley baby before ultimately deciding they don’t need her to feel like a family. All that’s left is to arrange a “love conquers all” happy ending for Isaiah Morton and Alicia Brown and that’s a wrap on “The Company We Keep”!
Whew! That was a packed episode. Let’s see what the roundtable had to say about it!
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – Mother of 2 with a love of books, including the Outlander series. Anxiously Awaiting BEES. No spoilers will be shared, but remember, I know what comes next…
Carole (@cbraunnj) – An obsessive knitter and tv binge watcher who is also a teacher and costumer.
Amanda (@prizedham) – Educator, longtime fan of Outlander and Richard Rankin.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – I don’t take the show seriously, so people shouldn’t take my opinions seriously, but someone usually does.
1. Roger just isn’t have a great time in the 18th century. Was there any winning for him in the situation with the Browns?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – Roger can only sing so much and enough with the origins of words and phrases Rog! Your historical intellect gains you no militiamen here! Jamie probably felt Roger was winning when he didn’t speak.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – Poor Roger, can we start the hashtag now? He and his men may not have survived a shootout with the Browns. I think he made the right choice. Besides explaining the situation to the men before they deserted, I’m not sure there’s much he could have done differently.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – 20th century man caught between a rock and a hard place. As much as he is an intelligent historian, he really isn’t a very good general leader, or captain.
Amanda (@prizedham) – I can see where he shouldn’t have given up his man, but at the same time we know Roger is a peaceful man and he isn’t going to take steps without thinking things through on how to minimize bloodshed. He comes from a time POST-WWI and II where whole generations were lost and disillusioned with war. Just because his decision didn’t quite match up with the times, doesn’t mean it was the wrong choice.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – I think the only time Roger probably felt like he was winning was right before Jamie and Claire showed up. After that he just acted like a whiny disgruntled pelican because Jamie didn’t give a sh*t about his historical expertise.
2. Poor Brianna. Now she knows Bonnet isn’t just back, but that he’s around and he may have even seen Jemmy. Tell us how you felt about her struggle this episode?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – I feel like she’s really keeping it all to herself but little by little the truth of her lingering pain has to come out. Roger is aware of what’s in her mind but her silence about it will become a source of contention. Also, she shouldn’t be left alone on the ridge even if Marsali The Butcher of Fraser’s Ridge is with her. Although, if Bonnet came around, I’m confident Marsali could take him.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – It’s been obvious that Brianna has been struggling with her PTSD all season since she learned Bonnet survived the jail bombing. Maybe she’s even regretting telling Bonnet about Jemmy. I feel awful for her (and bravo to Sophie Skelton for her portrayal). But I think her burden might be lessened if she would share her struggle with her family.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – Brianna’s nerves were palpable across the screen. She is still trying to recover from the rape and all of its aftermath. Now she finds out Bonnet is alive and well and has seen Her Son. I truly feel her fears. And then when Jemmy disappears, I can physically feel her fright, as have so many parents when their child vanished at that moment. When it comes to protecting Jemmy, Brianna is Mama Lion.
Amanda (@prizedham) – I can understand the paranoia, particularly surrounded by darkness around the house when she thought she lost Jemmy. Knowing Brianna, I’m surprised she didn’t set out the minute she was alone to find Bonnet and cut his head off, but she’s a mother now and has to think about her child too.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – Not a huge Sophie fan, I rarely have anything nice to say about her performance, but I gotta admit, she was pretty good in this episode. I could feel Bree’s stress and worry, especially when Jemmy vanished for a moment. I think as a mom it was easy for me to put myself in her shoes and I have had a child get lost in the woods and it was the most terrifying moment of my life. Obviously, Bree’s situation is different, but I think Sophie did a good job of showing us her emotions without really having to say a lot. I feel for her and hope she finds peace soon.
3. Claire and Jamie had so many moments this episode: Seeing them as parents to a newborn! Seeing Jamie sword dance! Conversations with a slightly tipsy Claire. What were your thoughts, and were you surprised they decided not to keep baby Beardsley?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – It was nice seeing them working together and watching their intimacy as partners. These moments are what makes their story a pleasure to watch. I wasn’t surprised that they didn’t keep the baby but relieved. They’re at a different stage of their lives and have all the kids they need. Also I’m still not 100% about Brianna (and then Roger) becoming a part of the Jamie and Claire story of Season 1 and 2 so I was definitely glad they didn’t keep that extra kid.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – I loved the tender and funny moments between Claire and Jamie. It’s always great to see them enjoying the life they’ve made; it was hard won. I always want Claire to keep Baby Beardsley when I read this passage in The Fiery Cross. She never does, hah! I thought the writers might make that specific change, but not this time either.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – Jamie & Claire were so in sync in this episode: A look, a nod, a smile. It was great to see them like this. I didn’t ever feel that they were parents of Baby Beardsley, it was more of keeping the baby safe until they could figure out a plan for her. I never thought that they would consider actually adopting the baby. As for Dancing Jamie, I personally thought that we would see more of the sword dance, from the 4 Aires bowing to the meticulous steps. But there’s only so much that be shown in one episode. As for “Tipsy Claire”, it was a fun moment that gave us emotional intimacy, which is an important part of our couple’s relationship.
Amanda (@prizedham) – I’m not surprised that they didn’t keep the baby. Claire had JUST remarked in the previous episode that this is no world for a baby AND that she wants Bree and Roger to take Jemmy back to the 20th century if they can because it’s not safe here. I’m more surprised that Jamie considered keeping the baby, knowing that their future is supposed to hold a fire and a war.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – The Jamie and Claire moments were the best parts. I think Sam and Cait have fallen into a great groove with each other on screen. The dance was cute and I did love the way Jamie bowed to Claire. I will always love drunk Claire! It was nice to see them having fun and then cap the evening off with an emotional heart to heart was just perfect. Yea, I’d love to see them raise a baby together since they never had the chance, but I’m glad they didn’t keep the baby. They have enough other stuff to worry about and plenty of grandbabies to cure any baby fixes that pop up.
4. The writers made us flip flop on our feelings about Isaiah Morton and Alicia Brown so many times during this episode our heads were spinning! Did you go on as big an emotional journey as we did?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – No. I was too distracted by Jamie and Claire. Also the drama of teen youth has not changed in 250+ years.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – A little. I know the story. It was well done for TV. I think Isaiah explaining that he hadn’t shared a bed with his wife in 2 years touched a specific nerve with Jamie. I especially loved that Isaiah was bold enough to ask Jamie and Roger what they’d do for their women – a reminder of ALL Jamie and Roger had endured to be with their wives. A great touch.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – I really didn’t have an emotional investment in Isaiah and Alicia. I felt bad for Alicia, caught between her father who is planning to sell her in marriage for tobacco and land and her feelings for Isaiah, who already had a wife and had no plans to do the right thing for her.
Amanda (@prizedham) – I rolled my eyes more than I flip-flopped. They tried to compare a man who was already married, though he did not love his wife but was in love with this girl, to Jamie, who has only ever loved Claire, and Roger, who traveled THROUGH TIME and then suffered torture from the Native Americans, to go after Bree. I wish writers would stop trying to make Romeo and Juliet a thing to be sought after.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – I totally thought it was just a bunch of puppy love BS and didn’t really care until the very end when it was clear they really loved each other.
5. In a twist we really didn’t see coming, we found out what happened to the flip side of that paper that Fergus took rather quickly. Were you surprised this was resolved so quickly? Do you think there will be further repercussions from this?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – I feel like there has to be more to this story because this didn’t feel like a resolution at all! Is there gonna be a Witch Trial Part 2 and will Claire be sent to another f*cking barbecue?!
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – Yes, I was surprised and yes, I do not think this is the end of it. Perhaps the Frasers are forewarned?
Carole (@cbraunnj) – I thought there was going to be something about that 2 sided paper. So now Dr Rawlings has a column! I don’t think this going to be the end of this news. Someone is going to use this later on and yes, there’s definitely going to be repercussions.
Amanda (@prizedham) – I knew what was going to happen as soon as he grabbed that sheet of paper. I think that it will probably have something to do with leading Bonnet to the Ridge or people figuring out it was Claire and going after her for her ideas and methods.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – This storyline bugs me so much! Fergus would’ve never just grabbed some random piece of paper off the desk in the first place. It was so out of his character. I think more will come from this mistake and I’m sure Claire will suffer the consequences.
6. Marsali is so intuitive. Tell us what you thought about the Marsali-Bree budding best friend relationship? Is Marsali the secret MVP of Fraser’s Ridge?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – I want to see their relationship develop further over night caps! Marsali is a gem and we all need a Marsali in our lives.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – I loved the talk – I wish Briana had unburdened herself. I think it’s only natural that the 2 women, of an age and both young mothers, would bond. They’re practically sisters.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – Marsali is excellent!! I’m definitely Team Marsali! She’s intelligent, fun, and knows her way around butchering. But best of all, she has good kind soul who’s able to lend an ear to someone who needs it. And that someone is Brianna. This woman needs a BFF and Marsali is just the person.
Amanda (@prizedham) – They are practically sisters, and I’m sure Brianna always desired a sibling and Marsali misses hers. She is absolutely the MVP of the Ridge and it’s no secret. She butchers without a second thought, is fiercely protective and calm, and one day I hope I grow up to be just like her.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – The Marsali-Bree moment was favorite after all the Jamie-Claire moments. Lauren Lyle is a f*@king treasure and must be protected all costs! I thought she helped bring out some of Sophie’s best work yet. Yes, Marsali is the MVP of Fraser’s Ridge.
7. Singing Professor Roger and Jamie are really trying to find their way this season. What did you think of the intellectual approach he’s currently taking in the 18th century, and the current status of his relationship with his father-in-law?
Jordyn (@urbanoutlander) – I kinda understand Jamie’s disappointment in Roger but he was the one who decided to make his bookish 20th century son-in-law a captain of an 18th century militia so if want to point fingers… I’m looking forward to seeing how Roger is gonna up his game and become the man that Jamie wants him to be! At the same time, their tension tickles me.
La’Shay (@Endurance97) – I think Roger can’t help himself. I, for the life of me, can’t understand why Jamie is SO offput by Roger. I mean, I know how it was written, but Jamie is himself educated. You’d think he’d appreciate intellectual discussions with Roger. As for Roger, it seems that his redemption and settling into life in the 18th century is just not gonna happen. A disappointment, for sure.
Carole (@cbraunnj) – I’m definitely seeing a very strained relationship between son-in-law & father-in-law. Jamie is thinking, “Sure the guy can hold a tune but he can’t lead a small group of men.” Roger meanwhile can analyze the meaning of various phrases (now I know what Dutch Courage means!) but it’s still not going to be helpful in a battle. The only thing that works in their favor is their love for Claire and Brianna. But I’m predicting it’s going to be a while before they are in harmony together.
Amanda (@prizedham) – As an educator, I delight in seeing Roger Mac go full professor. Richard Rankin has this certain gravitas to him, an intelligence in his cheekiness that allows him to perform this professorial dialogue. I love that he’s trying to teach others about 20th century idioms, whether they know he’s from then or not. Jamie even, finally, threw out some lines that made you remember he’s supposed to be incredibly intelligent and not just “king of men” with the brag of doing the alphabet in Greek backwards while drunk. I think Roger is still incredibly insecure in his relationship with Jamie, always feeling slighted and then surprised by Jamie’s expectations of him. What more can the man do?! He’s already proven he loves Bree more than anything else in the world! Without realizing it, I think that Claire is getting in the way of any approval because she keeps mentioning how Roger wants to take Bree away.
Jamie (@jamiesrule) – Not a Roger fan at all! But I do feel like the show isn’t trying too hard to make him likeable. He’s coming off as pompous and arrogant with his history lessons. I think once Jamie finds him more agreeable maybe the audience will too. I also understand why they need to show Roger singing, but twice in one episode was too much for me. The dude has been singing in every episode and I’m over it. Over. It!
Final Verdict: We hope “The Company We Keep” is the tight, fast-paced storytelling and moments of connection between Jamie & Claire!
In what might be Outlander’s best episode for Jamie and Claire in seasons, “The Company We Keep” keeps a brisk pace juggling a few different storylines. We’re hoping for more episodes like this, when the essence of the book scenes translate so beautifully to the screen. It’s not that they’re the same. But the essence of the characters are the same.
Another top notch performance by Sam Heughan. He doesn’t even have to try to play Jamie anymore. There were so many “Jamie” moments that leapt off the screen this week it was almost an embarrassment of riches for fans. To be fair, though, we have to find something to criticize. Nice try on that sword dance, Sam.
The whole roundtable agrees: Lauren Lyle as Marsali is the MVP of the Ridge. Marsali. We see you. We feel you. You’re the greatest friend and medical assistant and pig butcherer around. All joking aside, there was something so touching about the way Marsali was there for Bree. She knew exactly what she needed, how she needed it. The best decision production made was to increase her role this season. She started strong and gets better with each episode.
The mystery of what was on the flip side of Fergus’ paper was solved very quickly. So quickly it left us wondering if there will be further reprecussions later down the road. This is Outlander, so we’re assuming there are going to be some issues with Claire later.
Shoutout to Richard Rankin for his singing this week. Personally, this writer loved “Highland Laddie”. Even though our roundtable didn’t love the multiple singing performances, we’re going to chalk this one up to improving Roger likeablility for the people who weren’t on board before.
We admit that there’s a lot less to say about an episode we generally just liked. Keep giving us more episodes like this one, Outlander. The shifts in focus between characters kept us with you from the moment the episode began. As the show has opened up it’s been nice to shift the narrative focus between the different leads. The editing has improved vastly and has been helped by sharper writing and characters behaving in ways much more consistent with their characters. Intimacy between our favorite characters was lovingly preserved. Keep it up, Outlander!