Here’s the beer for Episode 2. Jen said there would probably be some English Stuff in this episode and given that the only beer made in Scotland at the liquor store we stopped at was a “no hop” beer made with berries and twigs and tears of brewers who have wasted an afternoon, I figured going Basic Brit would be okay.
Anyways, last thing’s first. Because we watched the episode OnDemand, we got the ‘extras’ bit with Ron Moore revealing that the castle where this (and many more) episodes was filmed at the Grail Castle from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. This news has completely colored my memory of the episode, but since nothing really happened that’s okay.
After some credits that show two flavors of Old Timey-ness, we rejoin our heroine who has died of hypothermia because she’s only wearing a slip. Jamie dumps her frozen corpse into the plentiful mud of the Grail Castle where it is loaded into a catapult to await the English.
Oh, wait, no. Instead of freezing to death in the cold and wet, Claire survived thanks to Jamie’s throbbing body heat (thus making him Team Jacob). She still gets dumped into the mud, though. Luckily Mrs. Padmore from Downton Abbey is on hand to take a shine to her. “Oh! Another mouth to feed and more work for me!” That people are so willing to help out Claire really bugs me. She acts like a Time Snob through much of the episode and, were I the wobbly-ankled laird of a Highland castle, would have been fed to the pigs long ago.
Time travelers, swan’n about, think’n they own the fook’n place!
Padmore spends two, maybe three hours wandering around to find Claire’s prescribed herbs that she needs to tend Jamie’s wounded shoulder. At least, I assume it’s 2-3 hours as later scenes of gathering tend to be slow rambles full of exposition. Anyways, we get the herbs, boil the sponge, then re-boil the sponge because Claire is overcome by the sight of the scars on Jamie’s back (completely forgetting that the show opened with her dealing with the ragged meat that used to be a soldier).
Jamie takes this opportunity to launch into a tale of how Black Jack, a character we first met a’sneering and a’raping, is totally not a nice guy. Again, this raises the issue of why he was not killed when he was alone in the woods by the Scots Ninja when he had the chance. But anyways, Ole Rapey made Jamie motorboat his sister. This was followed up by a flogging and then more rape. We knew Black Jack was a Bad Guy the moment we met him, but now we’re doubly sure, so pipe down with the #notallofficers thing.
The flashback ends and Jamie gets his hot compresses and Claire goes to bed. In a nice, big bed. By herself. Again, why are people being so nice to her? Do they know she’s a Main Character? “Our lives were naught but toil, but harken a heroine! Now we will go from background drudgery to full plot-driven panic!” Padmore wakes her up, gives her two spoonfuls of broth (Claire, who gets nude again, really needs more broth. Maybe a fried snickers or seven too.) and gets her dressed in a scene that was written for my mom. Look at the garb! The costuming! The attention to detail!
We then get a flashback to Claire, Boring Brutus, and the Rev at a pub while, in an effort to liven up the table, Boring regails all with tales of interrogation techniques. Woo, fun times.
Claire is taken to see Wobbly Ankles, the lord of the castle. She pokes around his books and tries to make up a Totally Legit story about how she came to be wandering around the woods pretty much naked based on a high school knowledge of French history. Of course she makes herself a noble! Of course she expects people to help her! Of course she lies badly, why would any of these pasties know anything? SHE’S A FUTURE SUPERWOMAN!
She manages to completely bungle any attempts at being a smooth operator, mainly because she insists on presenting herself as a noble. If she had gone with a story about being, say, a merchant’s wife who doesn’t know much about what’s going on, she would not have to worry about being fact checked by an actual member of the nobility. See, nobles actually paid attention to other nobles, so you couldn’t just make up a new family. Wobbly Ankles had a room full of books and I bet one of them was a book of The Peeridge.
Claire figures her Web of Lies has ensnared Wobbly and he says he can get her back to Inverness via a tinker’s cart in five days. They really talk up the tinker. It’s all anyone can talk about. THE TINKER IS COMING IN 5 DAYS REPENT YOUR RUSTED POTS. Claire’s problem is that she doesn’t have a flashback to Ole Boring Hubby until after an HBO-style Awkward Dinner where she lies unconvincingly, menaces the safety of her host’s lineage, and gets da-runk. “Don’t do all the things you just did,” drones Boring from the past of her future. “Too late BARF,” moans Claire.
Claire decides to keep a low profile and does that by “helping out” Mrs. Padmore by foraging for roots and tubers. This explains why medieval food was so bland as it must have taken ALL DAY to pick one thing of parsley what with the standing looking over majestic vistas and drawn out conversations with the wacky-eyed locals. But before she can get to the Wacky Eyed Witch, she hangs out with Jamie, who greets her in the usual manner by wounding his shoulder. Claire has also picked up a follower in the form of Non-Union Ren Faire Jack Black Impersonator.
Anyways, there’s a witch who is going to be Claire’s frenemy. “You’ll poison people with that,” she says as Claire pokes at a mushroom. “ACTUALLY, parts of it are good for staunching blood from shoulder wounds,” Claire one-ups. “Oh yeah? Well THAT plant is good for abortions,” the witch replies. The two stare at each other and start to make out.
Apparently, Claire is good at makeouts because the Witch is totally her bestie at some court thing later on. It’s some sort of moot where Wobbly Ankles gets to decides cases while his brother, Jamie Hyneman from Mythbusters, stands by. The Witch translates what the hell is going on for Claire. Again, people keep helping Claire for no reason! I have to insert off-screen makeouts to make any of this make sense. People have given her fancy clothes, jewelry, food, and probably a horse or something just because she has straight teeth and no rickets.
One of the cases that Wobbly has to try is about some blonde girl named Leghair? She doesn’t show some farmer dude any respect? Anyways, she needs to be beaten. BECAUSE THE PAST. Jamie, who is at the fete and has not wounded his shoulder in some time, steps forward to take the beating in her stead. Jack Black then slowly punches Jamie for like 5 hours before ending with the BIG SHOULDER FINALE.
Claire gets to tend to Jamie’s wounds again and we learn that Blonde Leghair is Mrs. Padmore’s granddaughter, so I guess he was doing her a solid. Either that or Jamie is starting to like the pain. It makes him feel alive, man.
Oh, at some point Claire totally pissed off the guy from Mythbusters (Mythbrother?) by boasting that she gets to ride with the tinker so nyah nyah nyah. I forget when this happened because Claire spent most of this episode being an ungrateful brat whose only use is healing shoulder wounds.
Unlucky for Claire, then, that there is a shortage of shoulder wound healers at Grail Castle! So after teasing us with a single shot of the tinker we’ve heard so much about (Claire orders him to wait for her when summoned by Wobbly – that’s no way to treat a tinker, gurl) she’s told SIKE YOU GET TO STAY HERE WITH US IN THAT DUNGEON YOU AND YOUR BORING HUSBAND ATE OUT IN EARLIER IN THE FUTURE. Claire flips out and cries as Wobbly and Mythbrother leave her in her new basement realm.
Claire then immediately sets to work on scratching a note to her future self on the wall OH WAIT NO SHE DOESN’T BECAUSE