Outlander Screen vs. Page Review: Episode 1

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follow link For years I was worried that any attempts at moving the Outlander series from the page to the screen was going to undermine the integrity of the story. I am glad last night’s premiere on Starz proved these thoughts wrong. This review and those to follow will focus heavily on comparing the books to the episodes and will contain spoilers for both. [Photo courtesy of Starz]

source link Claire Randall (Caitriona Baife) is seeking normalcy after the horrors of World War II only to have her life turned upside down again. She has been separated from her husband Frank (played by Tobias Menzies) for five years and their honeymoon in Scotland is their chance to reconnect.  During the trip, Frank investigates his family tree, a pursuit which leaves Claire feeling isolated.These opening scenes in the book are filled with spoken and between the lines tension. Their experiences in the war have changed their personalities and their views on the future.

http://havanatranquility.com/daeso/6435 On screen, although minor details are sacrificed for time or altered, evidence of conflict between Claire and Frank still comes across. Frank becomes so focused on the project that she resorts to seduction to turn the focus back on their relationship. She doesn’t want to become the professor’s wife, but a woman with her own career in medicine. 

see Claire’s journey to the 18th century starts with an an odd palm reading and ends with stepping into a stone circle after witnessing a Druid ritual. Claire’s feelings of weightlessness and disorientation were depicted in the episode as similar to a severe car crash. The lack of sci-fi time travel special effects keep the original drama of the scene in the novel without sacrificing visual impact.

click here The visuals of Highland fighters confronting British soldiers in the woods enhanced the drama of Claire’s entry into the 18th Century. The first person she meets is is the incredibly threatening Black Jack Randall. The decision to have Menzies play both Frank and Black Jack solidifies Claire’s confusion about the past. She has a feeling they are connected but it is a mystery that won’t be solved right away. One of the Highlanders finds Randall and attacks before he can harm Claire. Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan) is suspicious of Claire but is also concerned Randall will try to harm her again. The Highlanders claim her as a captive as they flee to their stronghold. 

http://vitm.com/eawfNW-3H4g4nb5a8G6g0_3b2D5k3789/ The Outlander pilot overall set the tone for a rare well crafted adaptation of a novel. I am looking forward to seeing how the next episode will portray the people and environment of Castle Leoch.

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