- Entertainment and Media
Outlander Series : Television and Book
Unless you have been living under a rock since the Fall of 2014 you have seen the ads and write ups on the “Outlander” television series and book series. Like many of you I had never heard of the Outlander series or Diana Gabaldon. However, after being bombarded with ads in magazines and seeing write ups about the series daily on my internet feed I decided to see what all the hype was about. I was skeptical as I decided to take the plunge and bought the first book in the series. Now of course I began with the book because that is what any normal “book loving” person would do. “Book lovers” always read the books prior to watching the movie or television series because we all know the book is always better. Also, us “book lovers” want the option to state that the book was so much better than the movie so we sound slightly more educated than others.
"Outlander" the Book Series
I was surprised to find that the first book in the “Outlander” series was written in 1991! Hell, I was only 11 years old when the first book came out. My first thought was why has it taken until 2014 for someone to make a television series out of this book if it was so amazing!! I soon found that the book was about a woman named Claire Randall who travels through time from 1942 to 1742 to the Scottish Highlands. She soon falls in love with a Scottish highlander, Jamie Frasier, and finds herself facing a very big dilemma. Claire is forced with the decision of staying in 1742 with her hot, muscular, affectionate, intelligent, and all around perfect guy or going back to 1942 to her blah husband who seems okay but really is just good for a big yawn. Decisions… Decisions… Who to pick... Who to pick… Well obviously it was a no brainer and Claire chooses the Scottish Highlander Warrior, Jamie Frasier, who is too perfect for words and thus the Outlander series turns into an 8 book series spanning from 1991 to 2014.
Needless to say I’m a sucker for a good love story and when the author Diana Gabaldon threw in a whole lotta sex that helped too. I mean come on…I’m a middle aged mother of three so the added excitement is needed. However, do not get me wrong. The “Outlander” series is not your “Fifty Shades of Grey” because Diana Gabaldon actually has TALENT. However, if I’m being completely honest, I was of course a fan of “Fifty Shades of Grey” but in my defense I was 6 months pregnant with my third child and hormonal as all hell when I read the three part series but…. the “Outlander” series has so much more than just the sex. It’s historical, romantic, heart wrenching, and even very gruesome at times. In fact, it does seem like Ms. Diana Gabaldon has issues with violent sexual relationships and interactions because in every one of her stories there is some type of rape or sexual assault taking place. A very vivid and descriptive rape occurs in the first book and then many more rapes in the following seven books. In fact, if a character makes it out of Diana Gabaldon without being raped or with having someone attempt to rape them then they are having a good day. The character may have still ended up dying or bleeding to death but at least all of their orifices made it out of the book in one piece.
I read all eight of Gabaldon’s “Outlander” book series in less than two weeks, which is a feat that I am very proud of especially since each one of Gabaldon’s books average over 800 pages long. These are not little novels. These are full blown epics. So anyone could tell I was hooked. Too be honest there were many times I did find myself skimming through Gabaldon’s books because she writes about various characters but in all honesty, I didn’t give a damn about all those other characters, I just wanted to get to Jamie and Claire for goodness sake. She could have left out a lot of the back story of the other less interesting characters and focused more on Jamie and Claire for my personal taste but even with my periodic skimming I had become addicted to the Scottish hottie in the books and now I wanted to see how the wonderful character of Jamie Frasier would pan out on television.
"Outlander" the Television Series
Promptly picking up the phone and having my cable company instantly install the cable network showing the “Outlander” series, I found myself just as in love with the television series as I was with the books. In fact, I think I may actually be more in love with the television series because the series has done such a good job of including the great parts from the book and the show has eliminated the slower or more boring parts from the books. In addition, Sam Heughan was magnificently cast as the perfect in all ways Scottish Highlander Warrior Jamie Frasier. I cannot think of another time when an actor was so perfectly made to play a role. Sam Heughan was born to play the character role of Jamie Frasier and he has owned it in every way. Of course Heughan is hot, muscular, beautiful, okay okay I could go on and on about his abs and body etc… P.S. if you love Heughan’s body as much as I do I recommend watching episode seven “The Wedding”. However, if you want to see Heughan’s beautiful and masterful acting abilities, which he definitely does have take a look at episode 9 “The Reckoning” after Heughan’s character rescues Caitriona Balfe’s character, Claire Frasier aka Claire Randall. When the two are exchanging words Heughan and Balfe have an amazing chemistry and an uncanny ability to let the viewer feel their characters feelings. Then of course there is the final episodes of season one where Sam Heughan and the rest of the cast have to plunge deep into Gabaldon’s sadistic rape scenes that the author loves to include so much in her heartwarming novels. Needless to say let’s hand Heughan a damn Emmy please and while we’re at it throw in a Golden Globe and just for shits and giggles an Oscar too. This man is amazing and I wonder where he has been hiding most of his life because the actor, Sam Heughan, was born in 1980 so in Hollywood standards he is not a young buck anymore but thank god someone finally found this gem of a man because this boy can act his heart out.
So in closing with the chance of sounding like a fanatic teenager who is obsessed with the latest YA novel or TV show… OMG you totally have to read all of the “Outlander” books and for the love of god upgrade your cable and start watching the “Outlander” television series! It is truly one of the best written, best acted, and best television shows I have ever seen in my life. Yes, I realize I just used best three times in a row but the television show and books are really just the best! Sprinkled here and there with some sex scenes, and dabbling in some twisted shit, but always pushing the boundaries and taking the viewer on a journey.