About the twelfth episode of the Outlander TV Series, Season One:
Well, we seem to be getting a lot of interesting reviews on Episode 12 —which is All Good, to be sure. I just want to make one thing clear, before drawing your attention to a couple of interesting ones: To wit, Black Jack Randall is not a homosexual.
He’s a pervert. He’s a sadist. He derives sexual pleasure from hurting people, but he’s not particular about the gender of a victim. (Personality, yes—gender, no.)
I see reviewers assuming that he told Jenny repeatedly to turn around, during their encounter in a flashback—and they assume it was because he’s gay. Actually (and obviously, I would have thought…), it’s because she’s looking at him and laughing, and he finds this unnerving.
If you look at his behavior throughout the book (and I emphasize book, though it’s almost the same in the show), he’s shown as attacking four people: Jenny, Jamie, Claire, and another prisoner at Fort William (who we don’t hear about in the show) named Alex.
Two men, two women—he’s an equal-opportunity sadist. However, given his position (garrison commander) and the structure of the culture he’s in, he has much easier access to male prisoners, whom he can torture at leisure. But he’ll take women when he can get them—vide his reaction to finding Claire wandering around by herself.
(In the Scottish Highlands, communities were small and tight and people really didn’t move around that much. Women didn’t often live on their own; they went from their fathers’ hearths to their husbands’ and pretty much remained in or near their homes and weren’t wandering around unprotected. Claire is, which is why she draws so much unwholesome interest.)
OK, that said, here are a couple of interesting reviews; I particularly think the Nerdist one is worth reading:
And here’s a brief comment by Tobias:
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