I think it’s tough for guys today in our culture. Look around. (And before I get jumped on about how tough it is for women, yes, saying it’s tough for guys does not deny the hardships for women, it’s just not what I’m talking about right now.)
This even shows up in the making of Outlander – Ron wanted to be careful not to make Jamie seem like too much of a hero, but there was no such “cap” on the character of Claire. This didn’t come from nothing, this is a social reaction, which makes a ton of sense. I say we stop the swinging pendulum and become fully self-actualized without feeling the need to emasculate or defeminize anyone. Wouldn’t that be amazing?
There’s a reason millions of women love Outlander, and yes, Jamie. We do like heroic, chivalrous, behavior. It doesn’t mean we are needy or want to downplay our own strengths. Part of Diana’s genius is showing us what is possible in two healthy balanced very masculine and feminine characters. May life imitate art in this instance!
Check out this beautifully done video by lolilie, where we see Sam portraying Jamie, the hero we all know and love. Claire is no shrinking violet, mind, they take turns being heroes; sometimes they’re both heroes at the same time, and sometimes neither is a hero. Such is the nature of life, and people.
Seeing Jamie as a hero doesn’t make me feel weak or like I have something to prove, it actually makes me appreciate my own man, and the subtle ways he is a hero, every single day.
Thanks Diana, Sam, Cait, lolilie, and the army of people it took to make this very cool tribute to our Jamie and Claire…
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Thank you, I totally agree.
Part of the reason that Ron wanted Jamie not to be too much of a hero may be that the books are , for the most part, told from Claire’s point of view. The story is hers, not Jamie’s. I often notice that non-readers have no idea that the story really centers around Claire. After reading the first three books in 1999, it took me many years of being single to realize that I was looking for someone who lived up to Jamie. Despite the story being Claire’s, Jamie takes over in the books and even more so in the series. Capping his portrayal sort of keeps that in check. Well, partially in check at any rate!
Thank you for for making the video and writing this beautiful tribute. Thank you Diana for writing these amazing books. What an awesome look of how two people can love each other in a man and woman relationship.
Well put. It’s too easy to get sucked into The conversations on some other outlander forums which bemoan that Jamie seems to play second fiddle to Claire in the series. But he definitely comes across as both strong and chivalrous as these clips so so well. And if anything, I think Claire, as portrayed by Cait , sometimes comes across as more delicate than Claire in the books (or as Diana herself comes across, for that matter ). But that’s OK, because both Sam and Kate do convey The strength,intelligence,passion loyalty and yes,flaws that we so love in the book characters. What I do wish the series scripts and editing would do better, is convey Jamie’s faith, his knowledge of classical literature and his ability to inspire loyalty and trust in others, but hopefully we will have eight more seasons in which he can demonstrate these,because it is these qualities,Along with everything else, I believe, Are what made Claire choose to stay with him in the past, and to risk the stones to go back to him.
The truth is Jamie has a millennial sensibility. He was invented by a woman now in her sixties. (believe he might be based on her husband who was before his time.) Jamie is very masculine, strong and action oriented but he is kind, gentle, forgiving, playful and he talks about his feelings. These characteristics are possible in the character because we know he had a loving authoritative father and a loving mother. Because of this he is able to love Claire and is open to change when he sees a good reason to do it.
Having read the comments I do absolutely agree with you. I suppose that somewhere Diana Gabaldon has a close relationship with her husband. She can portray a “real” man as we all dreamt of when teenagers or a little older. Strong, loving, tender, decisive, clever, handsome with a touch of romantism and being naturally funny and boyishly playful! Is that corresponding? Waaooow! More or less like my husband! He was my hero! So seem to be Jamie. And Claire must be his perfect match. If she was like Laoghaire – cannot spell that name right – Jamie would not have been the man he is. He is a strong man and needed a strong wife. Murtagh said that one day to Claire “He needs a woman, not a girl”. Both heros in the books and in the series.
This is the best show I’ve seen in year, and I’m 54. Have my kids addicted to it now!!. I will fall apart if it ends.
You hit the nail on the head Courtney. My sentiments exactly when you speak about the heroic characteristics of Jamie and how you recognize those traits in your man. Reading the Outlander books and watching the series doesn’t make me wish I was Claire. It makes me appreciate and recognize those traits in what I already have with my husband and cause me to aspire to be the best I can be in the true form and fashion as my Creator intended. Thank you for this posting.
I absolutely agree with you. That’s what the books and series did for me too. Made me appreciate my lovely husband and understand more about marriage.
Same here. Aren’t we the lucky girls!
I love the fact that they love each other for the good and the not so good. They accept each and don’t try to change each other no matter what. I didn’t have that and I really don’t think too many relationships and marriages have it either.
This is what makes the books so wonderful and loved by so many. Theirs in the relationship I wanted so desperately…acceptance of me for who I am. Diana gives this to us so beautifully.
So well said, thank you! I couldn’t agree more.
Amen! I, too, feel bad for men these days. But I also see a difference in the post 9-11 generation. Unlike Millennials, boys are boys and the girls likewise — celebrating all the gender differences that make them uniquely strong. Same for the book characters . . .
Thanks for making this tribute to Jamie. I agree totally. It’s rough for th the guys. Jamie let’s his feelings shoe bad and good sad or happy. Loved it!
What makes Jamie so appealing to me, and probably to most women who have read the books, is his ability to express his feelings in words. I have never met a man in real life who could do that. Many of the most memorable quotes from the books are his words, and typically my heart melts every time I read them. Jamie is more than a classic hero. He is a man of extraordinary depth of character, with a strength that comes from his heart and soul. It’s impossible not to love Jamie. Claire is one lucky woman!
The words said by Jamie are written by a woman, Diana, and summed up nicely in a poem I heard written by a man. It stated, ‘ she wanted me to love her, the way she would love her, if she were me. ‘ I grew up reading romance novels, watching love stories but until I became a mature woman who realized real love has a day to day existence that takes real men and women heroes to LIVE it for years.
beautifully put courtney!
I agree with everything you said. We all have our strengths and weaknesses, and sometimes as couples, we change places at times and take turns taking the heat or acting like arses. Together we are a unit to be reckoned with. If we don’t have each other’s backs, then what are we doing? Life is a dance and sometimes I lead, sometimes he does, but when we’re in unison, then we are able to glide across the floor. And I have to say that my husband enjoys watching Outlander as he adores Scotland and its people, and yet i doubt if he’s enjoying it as much as I do. This Jamie/Sam phenomenon has even taken this 69 year old Californian lass by surprise. My husband is handsome, and smart and everything I want in my life, yet this fantasy of Jamie, kilts, beautiful Scotland and everything that makes up Outlander has somehow rekindled my sex drive for my husband in a wonderful way. Yes, looking at Sam on screen just makes me weak in the knees at times and I sigh a little sigh, but its not real. It’s akin to the huge crush I had on Paul McCartney when I was 16. Even though i was lucky enough to attend 3 Beatles concerts, I knew that was as close as I was ever going to get. But still it was fun to fantasize about him taking me in his arms. And for some strange reason, my husband gets it and he loves the way it’s sparked our love life even more than it has always been. I call that a win-win situation. And one more thing, I’m just about to turn 70 and I’ve decided that I’m going to join Sam’s “My Peak Challenge” because I want to take better control of my body and get as healthy as I possibly can be going into the next phase of my life, so I am giving the membership to myself for my birthday on April 8th, while at the same time helping out a worthy cause at the same time. Plus I’ll get to watch Sam work out too! Thank you for your great blog, i really enjoy how you write.
Long comment on basic text. I enjoyed it because I am 80! Seeing a man like Jamie/Sam and the right corresponding wife Claire/Caitriona together makes me feel happy. My husband passed away some 8 years ago. He was a kind of hero to me, even when he was sick and almost gone. He had accompanied me during almost 50 years, always present and strong when needed and I had been at his side when necessary. A complete and total relationship. I think he would not have enjoyed OUTLANDER because he was too discrete and sometimes shy when sentimental scenes appeared in a film. But I could see his eyes blinking… Thanks to Diana Gabaldon, Ronald D. Moore and the whole cast and crew, and all the actors. But of course, special thanks go to Jamie and Claire. And I have to admit a weak spot for Mutragh…
Suzie, You really hit the nail on the head!! I’m approaching 60 and my relationship with my hubs has never been better! This series (books and TV) is pure magic. Jamie and Claire’s relationship just fuels the fire and gives us all the strength and passion we can use to strengthen our own marriages. I am swept away…
Thanks Anne! I thought surely I can’t be the only one who gets steamy watching Claire and Jamie and I think my husband does too. He has definitely notched up the sexiness! Now, if I could only get him in a kilt!
Glad to hear I’m not the only one!
You sound so much like me, it’s scary. I am 70 and Outlander has changed my relationship with my husband – our sex life is so improved, it couldn’t be better had we gone to a sex therapist, and yes I owe it to this show and what it has taught me about a man-woman relationship. I had to laugh too at what you said about Paul McCartney – I was the biggest Beatle fan ever, truly obsessed with Beatles, but that obsession found another outlet in the guise of Jamie and Claire – long live Outlander!
Gee, I can’t believe how long ago I wrote this, I was only 69! And now I am 71 and have been in MPC for almost 3 years now. I still love Paul McCartney too! But most of all my relationship with my husband still seems to flourish and I can give a lot of that credit to Sam and Cait, the series and the books ever so wonderfully written by Herself!
This story has great power because of what love does to people, it makes us sacrifice and work towards the best in someone besides ourself, it has shown me the sacrifices that my husband has made for me and made me want to do more for him. We are loved, in spite of our flaws, by a mighty God and if we have an amazing extra gift, a loving husband or wife. Great piece.
Well said! I totally agree!
This is what sets Outlander apart from all other romances in my opinion. I was so tired of one character overwhelming the other( mainly the man over the woman) . Thanks for this article. They are both great characters and this is a great tribute to Jamie.
I love Jamie and Claire, I love Outlander! Can not wait until it comes on again!
Beautiful! I love the show because the actors play their characters so brilliantly, that we can actually feel their emotions. I compare it to a thrill ride, especially the parts of the show that aren’t especially pleasant to watch. Humans like to be scared when they know they’re safe (thrill rides, haunted houses at Halloween, ghost tours, etc.). On the opposite end, who doesn’t love to feel love? I’m willing to bet there are many who watch who have never known the love portrayed by these characters, and it feels oh so good! The show lets us experience so many things; friendship, loyalty, bravery, fear, despair, and the list goes on. There aren’t too many shows out there that do this so well.
The story is the story of JAMIE as told by Claire. The writers have been tainted by the lie that women are being abused??? Sorry but I am a veteran of the burn your bra war and we won equality with that. Anything else is a lie perpetrated by Hollywood and politics for those voters who dont read history.
Jamie is supposed to be the hero. Warrior..Laird..Lover..wise…accomplished. His wife an equal match but from another time. I resent and am insulted by in the insinuation that I am intimidated by a strong man. Sorry but I find nothing attractive in a woman. I might like her hair or dress but not her. Find me the man DG wrote about in her books. In fact all of them. I happen to love men. If I wanted time with female friend I would ring one up. Wake up Hollywood…..you may like girlymen but real girls like real men.
Amen! Well said!
Beautiful words and video. I’d love to learn how to make vids this good!
Another Cheryl here. I wonder if all those posting in 2017 feel the same way now. I definitely feel Jamie has been placed in the “secondary” place in the show. S4 ,to me, gave Claire the dominant place. I missed them both being seen as partners with neither dominating. Even the publicity phots always seemed to show Claire “above” him. He’s disheveled and shes perfectly dressed. I think those pictures reflect what has happened on TV. I’m looking forward to Droughtlander as it will give us all a break. Our feelings can mellow like good Whisky and we will have a new S5 to put us back on an even keel and ready for more!