‘Outlander’ Recap: Season 7, Episode 2 “The Happiest Place on Earth”

15 Min Read

Following Thomas Christie’s confession and Claire’s subsequent freedom, Jamie and Claire return to the Fraser’s Ridge this in this week’s episode of Outlander but things won’t remain calm for long. Let’s jump in to this week’s biggest moments in episode 2 “The Happiest Place on Earth” which takes place several months after episode 1.

Alan Christie Tells the Truth

Fresh from gathering herbs in the nearby woods, Claire spots a familiar figure at Malva and her baby’s graveside. Claire makes her way over only to find Alan Christie, whom the ridge hasn’t seen in months, kneeling next to the grave with a loaded pistol at his side. He’s clearly distraught and tells Claire that he loved Malva more than anything, she was his. As he talks, it becomes clear that this was more than a sibling attachment and Alan confesses that the baby was his. He’d been raping Malva for years and when she got pregnant she began sleeping with other men in an attempt to hide that he was the father. She believed one of those men would marry her, but Alan suggested she frame Jamie in the hope he would give her money to disappear and they could run away together. However, in the days leading up to her death Malva told Alan that she couldn’t frame Jamie. She loved Claire too much and couldn’t stand to see betray her. Malva was headed to their house the day she was killed with Alan on her heels begging her to change her mind. He told her he loved her but she said she didn’t love him. At that confession, Alan slit her throat and left.

After finishing his story he grabs the pistol and attempts to shoot himself but Claire manages to wrestle it away. Alan begins to say he can’t live without Malva but is cut short by an arrow to the back straight into his heart. Ian, having heard the whole story, shot him. “He’s right. He cannot live,” Ian tells Claire. They realize how trapped Malva was in her situation, but quickly head to the woods with shovels to bury Alan before anyone can see. Of course, there’s rustling behind them and Mrs. Bug finds them digging a whole with Alan’s body nearby. Mrs. Bug believed him to be evil immediately and though she doesn’t know the story, she knows Claire and Ian and agrees Alan must have deserved it. She takes up a shovel to help them.

Brianna and Roger Welcome Amanda

Born a little early, Claire helps Brianna through the birth of her new daughter. She and Roger welcome a baby girl and debate her name while Claire and Jamie congratulate them. Roger suggests Amanda which is latin for “she who is loved” and Brianna whole heartedly agrees.

A few weeks later, a very pregnant Lizzy reads out the printed announcement of Mandy’s arrival in Fergus’ paper. Her full given name is Amanda Claire Hope Mackenzie and Brianna jokes that she’s already famous. As they visit on the porch, Jamie carries Mandy around the stables to show her the newborn foal that is to be her mount when she’s older. He promises to teach her how to ride as she grows up. Later, Claire spends time with Mandy in the surgery, showing her the various objects and cooing that if Mandy wants to, Claire will teach her all about medicine and train her to become a surgeon. Claire lovingly touches Mandy’s tiny fingers and notices a slight tinge of blue in her fingernail beds. She carefully lays Mandy down in her basket and grabs her instrument to listen to Mandy’s heart. Upon hearing her heartbeat Claire swears just as Brianna enters the room and asks what’s wrong. Claire looks heartbroken as she meets her eyes.

Claire, Jamie, Roger, and Brianna gather where Claire breaks the news that she believes Mandy has patent ductus arteriosus. It’s common in babies who are born early, like Mandy, and means that the ductus arteriosus which is a valve that allows blood to skip oxygenation via the lungs while the baby is in the womb didn’t close. Upon birth this valve is meant to close and blood will flow to the lungs for oxygen, however in Mandy that didn’t happen. Brianna, already crying, asks if it’s fatal and Claire sadly tells her that it probably will be and it’s just a matter of time. The blue tinge in her nails is an early sign as is the wheezing Roger says he heard but thought nothing of. Brianna asks if Claire can do anything for Mandy but she can’t, not in this time period. She does know someone who could help though.

That night Roger frets to Brianna over whether Mandy can even travel through the stones and if they can given their last attempt failed. She tells him that she’ll take Mandy and he can stay with Jemmy to continue his training as a minister. He’s rejects this immediately. They are a family and his family will always come first, they travel together. In their own room, Claire thinks through how she could perform the surgery herself but admits she’s not a heart surgeon and simply doesn’t have the skill or tools in this time. Jamie invites her to pray with him even though he for Mandy and she agrees.

The following morning Jamie dangles a stone over baby Mandy as Brianna rocks her and comments that she seems to like it. Roger then asks Jemmy if he can hear the stone and Jemmy confirms that he can and also surprises everyone by saying Mandy can too. He tells them that she said so herself and returns to playing. With that seemingly settled they all agree to head to Wilmington to acquire enough gemstones for all four to make the trip.

A Wilmington Run In

Jamie, Claire, Brianna, Roger, Jemmy and Mandy all reach Wilmington and split up to acquire lodgings and food. After visiting the bakery Brianna spots Lord John Gray on a street corner with a young man. She quickly crosses to greet him and discovers that she’s face to face with her half-brother William. She plays it down as he introduces himself as William Ransom. From across the square Jamie spots the three of them talking and catches Lord John’s eye. They nod at each other and Jamie drinks in the sight of his son before moving on to the inn. Brianna is happy to have met William who tells her he’s arrived to help fight in the conflict brewing in the Americas. She wishes him well and William heads off leaving Brianna and Lord John alone. Brianna tells him she thinks William should know the truth about Jamie and confesses that she thought Frank was her father until Claire told her the truth. She assures Lord John that she loves both her fathers deeply and didn’t replace Frank with Jamie at all. Lord John vehemently disagrees with telling William the truth though.

Later that night, Jamie decides to visit Lord John in his room. Jamie tells him he’s looking for a gemstone for Brianna and Lord John mentions her opinion about William’s parentage. It’s not long before the conversation turns to Jamie’s involvement with the Sons of Liberty. They nearly fight over it, but Jamie says he fears that they need to sever all connection until the war is resolved. Both are teary eyed at the thought and Lord John offers Jamie the gem that Jamie took from the island 20 years ago. He’s carried it all this time and he wants Jamie to have it for Brianna. Jamie accepts it and says even though they won’t be speaking he will remain Lord John’s most humble friend. With tears in bot their eyes, Jamie departs.

Back in their rooms, Roger reveals that he bought three items with gemstone in them and they’ll need just one more. Jamie says they don’t and hands over the stone from Lord John. With that he asks Brianna to take a walk with him. Outside they are surrounded by fireflies as they walk through a wooded area and she jokingly says it reminds her of Disneyland and she describes the magic of the place for Jamie though he struggles to understand it all. He then asks if living in his time is a disappointment to her, but she assures him it is no such thing and he is the magic in her life.

Through the Stones Once More

The family arrive at the nearest stone circle, Ocracoke. They all share tearful goodbyes as Jamie and Claire kiss Mandy and hug Jemmy reminding them they love them very much. Brianna tells Jamie how much she loves him though he is at a loss for words and choked up by tears. Claire asks Roger to look after Brianna and says he felt like family from the moment they met. Jamie tells Roger he wouldn’t trust his daughter and the babies to anyone other than Roger, and Roger says it’s been his great pride to call them family. Claire and Brianna say their goodbye as Claire notes that she once went through the stone to save her baby and now Brianna is doing the same. Finally, the four give one last look to Jamie and Claire before heading straight for the stones and passing through. Upon seeing them leave, Jamie tells Claire that if it wasn’t for her he would simply choose not to go on anymore.

Safely back home on the ridge, Jamie stares at the ceiling while Claire lays next to him. She suddenly tries to initiate intimacy but can’t. He asks her what’s wrong and she admits that she feels like they’ve lost their whole family. Fergus and Marsali, Brianna and Roger, all the babies. Jamie remarks they’ve also lost Murtaugh and Faith, Jamie will likely never see his sister again. Claire completely breaks down and he holds her encouraging her to grieve those losses and he’ll be there for her when she’s done.

Danger on Fraser Ridge

A few weeks later, life seems to slowly be moving on for Jamie, Claire, and Ian though she still finds herself saddened by their leaving even knowing they aren’t dead just in another time. Just after nightfall, Claire returns to the house to find the door open. Noting nothing amiss she closes it when someone strikes a match in the other room. She turns to find Wendigo Donner there who begins demanding that Claire explain why he wasn’t able to cross through the stones. He escaped the army, went to the stones drunk, and woke up still in this time. She tells him he can’t be drunk and has to keep a clear head, thinking about where he wants to go in order to “steer” the travel. Wendigo demands she hand over her own gemstones so he can try again, but she tells him there are none. Wendigo’s men drag Jamie into the room at that point, and he tells her the deal is he gets the gemstones and the men can take whatever they want. They begin smashing things in the surgery, chemicals and vials mixing on the ground. One opens the cabinet with ether and shatters bottle after bottle. Claire warns them not to breathe it in but Wendigo is frustrated and begins to strike a match in the dark room. Claire screams for him not to do that. From outside the house, the surgery and half the house explodes into flames.

Outlander airs Fridays on STARZ at 8 p.m. ET and is available on the STARZ app beginning at midnight.

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By Brianna
Brianna works full time in the publishing industry, passionately building books to bring to the masses. Her first fandom was Harry Potter, which she joined at age 11. Her love for books took her abroad to earn her Masters Degree at University College London, after which she lived in New York City, and now resides in Austin. She loves all things fandom including Supernatural, Doctor Who, and more. Ever the introvert, she can usually be found reading, playing with her dog, listening to music and practicing yoga. Brianna joined the Nerds and Beyond staff in 2018 where she unites her love for all things "nerd" with her passion for writing. Find her on Twitter here: @bookbag09
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