Well, that was unpleasant.
Think of a stranger approaching you and saying, “In six days, I’m going to hit you with a metaphoric train, but the train will be naked, oiled with lavender, and buggering you. But in a lovingly gross manner.”
That’s sort of what just happened. Aside from wearing a dress one Halloween (okay, maybe three, and I’ve never felt prettier), I don’t have a great deal of experience with being a feminine object of desire. Jack Randall’s obsession with the physical nature of Jamie transcends gender, and it’s even worse than I’d imagined. He wants him as a thing, not a human, and it violates every principle we hold dear in a relationship between two people.
There are additional elements to this little horror story, one of which is the brooding stench of that rat-addled shithole the English call a prison. It’s cloistered and grotesque, and it made the entire byplay of Jamie’s torture even more believable. If you don’t hate English justice after this episode, you might be into the rough stuff. Just sayin’.
One of the reasons this episode made my skin crawl (emphasis on the one) is the nature of Jamie’s violation. Ask yourself this question: what is the most egregious thing that happened in that hour? Is the the psychological torture? The rape? The manner of the rape? What about the dereliction of duty by a supposed officer of the Crown? What about the other men in command at Wentworth?
There are many bad players here. The implied element of the rape scenes– such as Jamie’s bloody mouth– are layers of stink on a already vile process. I cannot fathom the effort necessary for Sam to allow himself to be treated in that manner. Tobias is, by all accounts, a nice guy. Imagine being asked to sodomize someone on camera, but, you know– just pretend. That’s a heluva way to make a paycheck. You’ve got to have some fairly stern metal in your spine to walk away from days of shooting such a scene and not be permanently altered.
There’s another issue about violation that might be even more squeamish. What is the most invasive manner of rape? I suspect that the answer is quite different for men and women. This episode, if you could actually watch it, makes one confront three or four types of terror; each act is a litmus test for what our own personal fears might be. Depending on your own personal demons, I suspect that once again, we all have a different opinion about what incident resonated as the worst. Ask your spouse/partner/bestie what made their stomach turn, and you get a window into their own strengths and weaknesses. That’s the mark of cinema that transcends torture porn, and becomes a commentary on the relationship between humans.
Now, on a lighter note, many Outmanders have reveled in our own eye candy– notably Cait and Laura ( with apologies to both actresses and their lovely genetic makeup)– but thanks to the blending of Claire’s face with Jack and his creepy ass long hair, I suspect that our appetites for Claire have been, ahh, limited, at least temporarily.
So, while the ladies of the fanbase can move on, it will be some time before Outmanders can, as we say, return to our previously scheduled programming.
My sincere apologies for milking that joke. I know both talented actresses would be stiff with rage at such a cheapening of their talent– and I say that with complete honesty. In no way should this complete be viewed as stroking their egos.
I have some other issues to address, but that will require another blog, so until next week, here is your assignment:
1) Avoid all dungeons.
2) Avoid all psychotic sadists with hair like a 1970s arena rocker.
3) Do not enter even glance at any lavender based products.
4) Don’t put stuff up your butt while someone tells you they only want what’s best for you and if you loved them it would be okay and why won’t you kiss me back, Jamie? Or something like that.
Cheers for now!
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