This week’s post-episode round-up includes interviews with Sam Heughan, Caitriona Balfe, Sophie Skelton, Matthew B. Roberts, Lauren Lyle, and Richard Rankin. Only excerpts are below, so please click on the links for each article to read them in their entirety. As always, be aware of spoilers for “Between Two Fires” and upcoming episodes.
SyFy Wire: Outlander Cast Breaks Down Their Favorite Season 5 Episode 2 Moments | SYFY WIRE
EW: ‘Outlander’ producer explains why the tar and feathering scene was necessary
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The tar and feathering scene was intense. What kind of research did you do on that?
MATTHEW B. ROBERTS: We pulled up the more contemporary photos of people in the early 1900s and late 1800s, old photographs of people who were tarred and feathered. It was horrific when we were going through these. Once again, one of the things we usually start with is how to make it as real as possible. What can we do? Will it look right? What will the audience reaction be? Do you really want to look at something like that? We questioned all these things and we don’t want to be gratuitous, but it also has to play. And what’s happening on screen has to affect the characters, not the audience. So if the characters need to see it and feel it, then we feel like we should play it. It’s not just a gratuitous moment to cause shock and awe for the audience. So we needed this tar and feathering to happen for the sake of Murtagh. The horror is there for the residents of Hillsborough. So later in the story when Jamie sees it for the first time, he’s affected by it, like, ‘wow’ in the sense that Jamie has seen a lot, but… this isn’t a war in the sense of a man being shot with a musket. This is someone being tortured. Jamie knows that firsthand. It has an effect on him because I don’t think Jamie would do that to another man, so there’s an internal conflict for Jamie.
Obviously Stephen Bonnet is the new villain. Would you go as far to say is that he’s even meaner than Black Jack?
I never wanted them to be the same and they’re not the same in the book. You don’t want to have a carbon copy of Black Jack. I think Black Jack had different sensibilities. He believed in duty, honor, loyalty to the crown, and responsibility to being a good soldier. He was not just a sadist. He was obsessed with Jamie loving him. That’s what made that dynamic. Bonnet, to me, is a person that was affected by his upbringing. He was orphaned and treated badly and lived off the streets and was never loved. He was a product of that, whereas we can’t say that about Black Jack. One of the questions I’ve always asked about Bonnet, and I’ve talked to Ed Speleers about this, is if Bonnet was raised in a happy family, raised by the Frasers, what would he become? Who would he have been? That’s the struggle for Bonnet. He was a product of his environment and he had to become this chameleon. We’ve talked about Ted Bundy like that. People were super shocked that it was Ted Bundy who was the serial killer because he was charismatic, he was articulate, he was fun … and then all of a sudden you go, ‘holy crap, he’s a psychotic killer.’ That’s the thing that about Bonnet. Roger hangs out with them during a journey across the sea. They have moments where it feels like if he wasn’t a killer, they would be friends. And it’s up until Bree gets raped where you really go, okay, this guy’s just evil. But in his mind, he was just doing a transaction with a prostitute because there was an unescorted female in a tavern asking to make a deal over a ring. I’m not saying it was right, what he certainly did was absolutely wrong, but in Bonnet’s head, he’s right. And that’s the thing about Bonnet. Everything he does, he feels like he’s doing for a good reason. And that’s what makes him so scary, is that he justifies it to himself.
Oprah Mag: Outlander‘s Lauren Lyle on Claire and Marsali’s “Between Two Fires” Moment
“Women at the time would just have to do things like that,” the Scottish actress says of the bloody butchering chore. “She’s also a seamstress, so she’s very skilled with her hands. She’s smart, and she’s got gumption.”“Claire can trust that Marsali will be able to come in and cut up bodies, and deal with autopsies,” Lyle explains. “And, despite being a woman of God and of the time, Marsali has always known that Claire’s some sort of white witch. There’s something a bit…more to her.”“This is probably Marsali’s biggest season in terms of development as a person. She’s gone from when we first met her as a young girl that runs away for love and goes on a huge adventure, and then is face-planted into a world she didn’t expect.”“You really get to know who Fergus and Marsali are independently, and what they each bring to the relationship,” Lyle says. So what’s next for the new surgeon apprentice on Fraser’s Ridge? Lyle will only say this: “Marsali has to take her place as a family member that saves lives— and potentially takes some.”