by Diana Vaccarelli
*If you haven’t viewed this episode yet be warned this review may contain spoilers!*
The finale of season 3 of Outlander, entitled “Dragonfly in Amber,” flashes forward to the 1960’s and finds Claire and her daughter Brianna visiting Scotland where Claire reveals the truth about Brianna’s father.
- The performances were the best part of the finale. The Actors continue to totally inhabit their characters – or maybe it’s the other way around. Caitriona Balfe delivers her best performance to date as our heroine Claire, exhibiting all the passion and guilt Claire feels about leaving her husband Jamie so subtly yet intensely that you can’t help but feel her pain. Sam Heughn pushes himself as Jamie. As he faces the fact that he has to let her go for her safety and the safety of their unborn child, you experience his readiness to give his life for them on any kind of battlefield, real or meteaphorical. The introductions of Brianna (Sophie Skelton) and Rodger Wakefield (Richard Rankin) are perfection. Skelton and Rankin are just as they appear in the Outlander books, and as a devoted fangirl I couldn’t help but be glad of the casting.
- As much as it pains me to say this, the writing of this finale did not live up to that of last season. Written by Matthew B. Roberts and Toni Graphia, the episode felt rushed, especially during the main emotional moment of our two leads saying goodbye to one another. The going back and forth between times was also confusing because there was no clear visual transition.
- One of the most touching emotional parts of the book was left out of the episode. It’s when Claire and Jamie carve each others initials into their thumbs to forever remember each others touch. I really missed that part. I know I’m being a little too picky because of course scenes have to be cut (no pun intended) for time, but to me that’s a key moment in the books and I was looking forward to seeing it.
Like all shows, Outlander had its ups and downs this season, but over all I found it far more moving and emotionally complex than any other show on TV. Starz recently announced that it has given full season orders for books three and four in the Outlander series, so instead of saying a weepy goodbye to the show, I’m already excitedly preparing to say hello to all the fine episodes to come!
Happy TV Watching!
Diana Vaccarelli is the TVWriter™ Critic-at-Large and, in case you haven’t noticed, a HUGE Outlander fan. Learn more about her HERE