Adapted from Diana Gabaldon’s hugely successful book series, time travel TV show Outlander will soon begin filming in Scotland. Here, Outlander superfan Jennifer Townsend introduces Jamie and Claire to those unfamiliar with the novels and predicts great things for their transition to the small screen.
So what is it about Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander that incites obsession among its millions of fans?
Aside from the lust-factor around Jamie Fraser (just you wait, you Outlander virgins!) and attention to historical detail, it’s the characters themselves. Not only will you find yourself regarding them like intimate friends and family, but you’ll become truly and emotionally invested in their well-being as you immerse yourself in the various plotlines.
And don’t be surprised if you mayhap find yourself speaking in 18th century Scots’ brogue, ken? Och, dinna fash yerselves, it’s verra harmless…
At the heart of this compelling historical fiction is the sexually-charged chemistry between a Scottish Highlander, Jamie Fraser, and a WWII Army Nurse, Claire Randall. It begins in 1945 and 1743 (post WWII and pre-second Jacobite Rising in Scotland). Without giving any spoilers away, Claire finds herself accidentally thrust back in time, separated from her husband by 200 years.
She is in constant danger as both the Brits and the Scots think she is working for the other, or perhaps even France, as a spy; Jamie Fraser is one person who trusts her. All she wants to do is get back to her time and husband, yet the longer she remains in the past, the more you want her to stay there with Jamie.
Jamie Fraser is a complex character with many layers: loyal, protective, smart, humorous, handsome, tall, strong, chivalrous, vulnerable yet commanding…a born leader. And then there’s Claire: strong-willed, intelligent, beautiful, thinks fast on her feet and has a gift for healing and medicine, which comes in handy in the 18th century.
I know with every fibre of my being that Outlander can match/surpass the success of Game of Thrones, the HBO original series based on George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice & Fire books.
There are good guys to root for, bad ones you wish you could kill with your own bare hands, plenty of violence, lots of sex, passion and romance. The story is unpredictable, there are plot twists and revelations that evoke visceral reactions (I found myself literally shaking during certain passages, especially in the later books).
It will translate beautifully to the screen.
Having Outlander made into a cable TV series rather than a feature film is the best possible scenario. Sixteen episodes to cover the first book/season will absolutely do the characters and their plotlines justice.
Outlander fans everywhere are rejoicing at Producer Ron Moore’s recent statement:
“We’re at pains to really follow the books,” he says to assure concerned readers. “One of the great things Starz said to us early on was, ‘We love the books, we think they are great so let’s make the [show] for the people who love the books. Let’s make it for the fans of the books first and trust that anyone who doesn’t know the material will get swept along in the story like everyone else does.’ Nobody ever says that,” Moore laughs.
“Typically studios and networks just say, ‘Yeah, we don’t really care about the book. We bought it for the cover or whatever…’ and then dispense with it very early on [in the process]. This was the rare time when everybody said this is great material and we like the story and these characters so let’s try to get as close to the books as possible in the show and that’s what we are doing.”
That’s all Outlander fans want; to see the story brought to life in the flesh, and lots of it, ken?
Jennifer Townsend is a Writer/Blogger from Connecticut, USA, best known for her <cough> healthy and completely normal addiction to Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. She is the Owner/Administrator of OutlanderFan.com.