Outlander's mid season finale was certainly a shocker - especially considering that Claire is gradually assimilating to life in 1700s Scotland where her resolve is tested repeatedly. Though her running departure to the stones (which, talking about it now took her a stupidly long time) helped snap her out of the real life hunky Highlander fantasy to find her way back to Frank, with every day she spends in the past, the more she wants to stay there. Who could blame her really? But as Outlander continues to romp over the moors and heaths, will it hold this kinetic energy it has acquired? Or will it start to tumble down? This week's episode, The Reckoning, is a little bit of an overstated title for what the episode actually is.
The biggest shock of the episode, that's reverently spoken about on the Internet when it happened was the punishment itself. In a time period where husbands could place their hands violently against their wives, it is both appalling and terrible to see Jamie - our white knight - exact it this way. The striking element of the scene, that would bristle most modern day audiences is the comedic element that it is played with. As Jamie giggles somewhat, as he brings his belt down on Claire's bare buttocks, it is this tentative portrayal that leaves us wondering how the modern(ish) woman will react. And believe me, she definitely regains control in the best way.
Added to Jamie's past love exacting mystical revenge against Claire, The Reckoning does much to set up the growing fight in Scotland and it'll be a brand new atmosphere that will lift Outlander to one of the most excellent shows on television. Although Claire and the audience have stepped backwards from her journey back to Frank - the life lead in the Castle and the forces against them all will make the show tantalising. Incredible, passionate and with excellent performances - Outlander is now a must see show.