TV ReviewsOutlander Season 3 Episode 12: The Barka Review

JasonDecember 4, 2017

The ghosts of the past return for both Claire and Jamie in a very good second-to-last episode of the season with plenty of new twists and turns that our two main characters must navigate through.

Synopsis: The Artemis finally reaches Jamaica bringing Jamie and Claire that much closer to their goal. During a lavish ball on the island, the Frasers encounter old allies, as well as former adversaries who threaten to derail their mission. (IMDB)

Writer: Luke Schelhaas

Director: Charlotte Brändström

Rating: TV-MA

Running Time: 64mins

Before the credits begin, the episode features Young Ian in a sort of flashback scene of when he was taken captive by the pirates a few episodes back. Aboard the Bruja, the men, who are looking for the treasure chest, take Young Ian and say that “The Barka” will want him alive. Time passes and we see that Bruja has now arrived in Jamaica and Young Ian is thrown into a jail cell and learns from the men inside that “The Barka” takes the men there one by one and are never seeing again.

After some time, Young Ian is then brought before “The Barka”, who is actually Geillis Duncan, who was presumed dead back in season one of Outlander. Definitely a shock, especially her first appearance in this episode as she’s bathing a pool of goat’s blood…super creepy! Geillis is pleasant to Young Ian and invites him to eat cake and drink some tea, with the tea actually being a truth sermon. She then pulls inform out of Young Ian, learning that the treasure box he was stealing was actually hers and that she is looking for the third sapphire stone that is missing from the box (the one that Jamie took out of it when he first came across it). Under the influence of the tea, Young Ian informs Geillis that is uncle Jamie Fraser will be searching for him and that Geillis seems to welcome her reunion with him.

Switching back to Claire and Jamie, the pair have finally arrived in Jamaica, ahead of Captain Leonard’s men. They quickly begin to look for clues on Young Ian’s location, searching through the local slave trading markets for answers. There, they learn that most of slave on-board the Bruja were sold to new governor of Jamaica and that this new governor is having a ball tonight. This gives Jamie the idea of attending the ball to see if the slave knows of Young Ian’s fate. Meanwhile, at the slave market, Claire, horrified by buying / selling of slaves causes a scene and ultimately ends up becoming an owner of a slave named Temeraire. Having no desire to keep the slave, Jamie and Claire want to free Temeraire and will one day (when the time is right). Now, however, they ask Temeraire to help them while they attend the governor’s ball.

So, Claire and Jamie attend the governor’s ball, with Fergus and Marsali attending as well along with Temeraire, who goes off (under Claire and Jamie’s wishes) to ask the governor’s slave for any type of info about Young Ian. At the ball, Jamie is suddenly surprised to learn that the new governor is actually Lord John Grey. Both Jamie and Lord Grey are shocked at this reunion, but are nonetheless pleased to see each other again. Speaking in private, Lord Grey informs Jamie and Claire of how he got this post in Jamaica and also of Willie, Jamie’s natural born son, who is fine and healthy. There’s kind of a awkward feeling as Jamie and Lord Grey speak, which Claire notices, but this reunion is a bit touching between the two men.

While Jamie and Lord Grey catch up, Claire also see a ghost from her past or rather ghosts. The first one is the two-fortune teller couple of Archibald and Margaret Campbell (who she met back in Edinburgh a few episodes back), who, unbeknownst to Claire, are in the employ of Geillis. Early on in the episode, Geillis is talking with the Campbells, instructing on how she needs the third sapphire stone to complete a prophecy reading. During this conversation we also learn the treasure box belonged to Dougal Mackenzie and that was passed down from generation from generation.

Claire then comes Geillis, who is also attending the governor’s ball.  The two time traveling females catch up, with Geillis informing Claire of how survived being burned at the stake. In a nutshell, she was with child at the time of the trial and was also allowed time for the child to be born, while Dougal then bribe the guard watching her to trade Geillis for a false body. After the battle of Culloden and hearing of Dogual’s death (she believes he died on the battlefield and not by Jamie’s hands), Geillis found a new man of a plantation owner in Jamaica, who soon passed away and she became Miss Abernathy. Claire then informs Geillis about her and Jamie’s current situation on the whereabouts of Young Ian. Playing the fool, Geillis says she doesn’t know where he is, but will don anything in her power to help them.

Geillis, coming across Jamie then meets Lord Grey and is stunned to see that he now has her lost sapphire stone in his possession. Desiring to have it to complete her prophecy, she devises of a plan and uses Archibald and Margaret Campbell to perform their fortune teller performance for the governor’s guests, with Geillis soon persuading Lord Grey to have his fortune read. Using a person item of his (i.e. the sapphire stone), Margaret tells Lord Grey of his fortune, which is really the prophecy that Geillis desires. Its cryptic message is a bit confusing, but Geillis seems to have a vague grasp on what its meaning and soon departs for Rose Hall.

The episode ends with the appearance of Captain Leonard arriving at the Governor’s ball. Fergus informs Jamie and Claire of this news and the pair flee the governor’s estate. However, not before they’re inform by Temeraire, who ask some of the governor’s slaves, that Young Ian was kept on aboard with the Bruja and delivered to Miss Abernathy at Rose Hall. This, of course, means that Geillis lied to Claire about Ian’s whereabouts (but we the viewers already knew that). Jamie and Claire then begin their journey to Rose Hall to confront Geillis, but are cut off by Captain Leonard and his men, who arrest Jamie for his crimes (the murder of a exciseman and of sedition). This leaves Claire left distraught and got between her dilemma….to continue her journey to Rose Hall (to find Young Ian) or to go after Captain Leonard and rescue Jamie?

All in all, this was a very interesting episode featuring a slightly awkward reunion between Jamie and Lord John Grey as well as a mystery to the sudden appearance of Geillis (and her ultimate endgame plan), setting the stage for the finale. What will happen? What does Geillis hope to achieve? Will Jamie be freed from Captain Leonard? Will Young Ian be rescued by Claire? Whatever happens, the next episode is going to be one heck of a finale….

9.0 Out of 10

If interested, check out my movie blog @ Jason’s Movie Blog for my reviews of current movies.

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