Outlander Returns: Why Jamie and Claire are the Best Couple in Books and TV!

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The second season of Outlander premieres this Saturday and I. Am. So. Excited. Jamie in a kilt! Action! Adventure! Historical intrigue! The best sex scenes on TV! And did I mention Jamie in a kilt?

Gabaldon-Dragonfly-in-Amber-220x332I’ve been an Outlander fan since I first read Diana Gabaldon’s series back in high school. I love every novel in the series, but Dragonfly in Amber, the book this new season is based on, has always been one of my favorites. Claire and Jamie are crazy in love, expecting a child and wondering if they have the courage to change the future. But nothing ever goes as planned, and the two face even more challenges than they did in book one. Still, if any couple can make it through the coming angst, it’s Jamie and Claire. They prove over and over again that they love and respect each other and that they’ll always choose one another, no matter the circumstances. Which is why they’re currently my favorite couple on TV right now (Sorry “Olicity!” You know I’ll always love you.). Here are five reasons I can’t get enough of Jamie and Claire in the books, and why you should definitely be tuning in for the new season Saturday, April 9.

  1. Chemistry for Days
OUTLANDER - Season 1 - Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe) andn F Jamie Fraser (Sam Heugan) - Photo Credit: Nick Briggs/Sony
Nick Briggs/Sony

Avid readers are always a little skeptical when their favorite book series makes it to the screen. Will they screw up Jamie? Will Claire’s hair be curly enough? Will the love story be able to transcend the page? Well, I can assure you, it has. When Sam Heughan was originally cast as Jamie, fans were concerned about his shorter height — Jamie is famously tall — and naturally blonde hair. But they didn’t need to worry. He perfectly captures Jamie’s mix of strength and sensitive diplomacy. Paired with Caitriona Balfe as Claire, the two have so much chemistry I’m surprised they haven’t blown up a set piece yet. They sparkle together, seem to genuinely like each other, and are basically perfect in their roles. It probably doesn’t hurt that they spend so much time naked together.

Which leads me to…

  1. Those Bedroom Scenes

Look, this show is as close to softcore as TV can get. This is not me complaining, trust me. Once Jamie and Claire get together, they average about one steamy sex scene an episode. And I’m not talking about the sexfest that is Game of Thrones or the cut-to-the-window variety we see on network shows. No, these two make love, and it’s sexy, attentive and sometimes so intimate that it makes me blush. I often feel like I just got caught watching something I wasn’t supposed to, the intimacy of the scene transcending the medium of television.

They’re not the typical romance we see on TV. Jamie isn’t calling all the shots, or introducing Claire to pleasure for the first time. Claire is actually the more experienced of the two, and makes no apologies for her love of sex. She’s the one instructing Jamie (at least in the beginning) and their love scenes run the gambit of emotions: loving, angry, fun, etc. It’s extremely realistic and nice to see Jamie and Claire be equal partners in the bedroom, just as they are in their daily lives.

  1. Mutual Respect

It’s not only about a roll in the hay for these two, either. They also talk to each other, and, maybe more importantly, listen. One of Claire’s biggest struggles with living in the past is feeling like she’s powerless as a woman. But Jamie never makes her feel that way, instead offering her respect, comfort and the space to do what she thinks is necessary. He also understands her calling toward medicine and encourages her to practice, despite the time period and her expected role as a wife. They are true partners, ones who aren’t seeking to out-manipulate or to toy with one another. It’s a level of maturity (and reality) that we rarely see in couples on TV, and typically even in books.

  1. Overcoming A Tortured Past


A part of why Jamie and Claire are so perfect together is how they face the hard times as a team. Most of their relationship has been a hard time, actually, and so far the couple has had to deal with multiple assaults, imprisonment, lies, separation, torture, etc. It’s not the best way to start out a marriage, particularly when that marriage was forced on you by a manipulative relative (or essentially, a warden). But they are true soulmates, ones who can problem-solve together and who can rely on one another in a world where they trust no one else. When Jamie comes to Claire, he’s a fugitive in hiding, lost from his family. Claire is also lost, stuck 200 years in the past and unable to trust anyone around her. The two become each other’s ports in a storm, recognizing that this will be the main person they can lean on while they try to navigate their pasts and their futures. Though they each have a lot of trauma to work through, they always do it side by side.

  1. The Best is Yet to Come

I’m not going to spoil anything, but there’s a reason the second book is my favorite Gabaldon tale. If the season follows the book at all, then we’re in for a wild, sexy (but still loving and respectful) ride. I can’t wait to watch how the show handles Jamie and Claire living the high life in Paris, or what happens when they start messing with destiny. Again, no spoilers, but rest assured that this season is going to be awesome.

Convinced? If so and you haven’t caught up yet on Season 1, it’s now available on Starz. I implore you to binge watch as much as possible before the new season airs April 9 at 9 PM EST!

Rachel Carter grew up surrounded by trees and snow and mountains. She graduated from the University of Vermont and Columbia University, where she received her MFA in nonfiction writing. She is the author of the So Close to You series with Harperteen. These days you can find her working on her next novel in the woods of Vermont.

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