Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” is just about that. Claire and Jamie’s world as they built it turned upside down in the blink of an eye, finding a new way to break our hearts. Time for a review!
Here we go!
NEVER PLAY WITH A WOMAN’S HAIR…
But how is it possible that everything fell apart in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down?” We knew that Malva was evil and that she was planning something sinister but… we didn’t imagine this betrayal. Claire took Malva under her wing, trusting her as her apprentice and trying to help her and Malva repaid her affection by making her sick and trying to destroy her marriage.
At first, it’s clear that Malva’s plan in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” is to kill Tom and Claire or at least make her sick enough to try to seduce Jamie. And she almost got to kill her.
I will never forget Jamie’s rictus of terror at seeing her like this, so still, so lifeless. His worst nightmare is losing Claire and he felt that he was living that nightmare…and he felt that if that happened, he didn’t have the strength to go on. Not without her.
And Jamie’s reaction to the haircut…he doesn’t like it at all, he hates it, because wild curls are part of Claire, they’re as rebellious and fierce as she is, they’re a symbol of her personality and everything he loves about her. He loves running his fingers through her curls, feeling their softness, and seeing them change color over time…but the important thing is that she’s alive and well.
The important thing is that she’s still breathing and she never looked as beautiful as she does now. Her curls will grow back but the most important thing now is that he can feel her heart beating under his hand.
That’s why he cries, he cries with relief, he cries for all the pain that he didn’t allow himself to feel, he cries for the hope that he felt. He cries because he also came back to life. And we love Jamie Fraser so much right now, that our hearts could burst.
What Malva didn’t count on to carry out her plan is the love that Jamie feels for Claire. I have a feeling that Malva never witnessed true love and has no idea how it looks. I think that Malva’s experience is that seduction and youth are weapons that she can easily use to get what she wants… and that no one will resist. So she tries it out with Jamie. And Claire sees it.
She’s confused, in the middle of fever, almost on the verge of consciousness, and tries to convince herself that nothing is what it seems…but she sees her. Claire sees Malva close to Jamie, stroking his back, getting closer… Of course, Claire’s dream is true: there is a snake in her house.
When Malva throws her lie in Claire and Jamie’s face in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down,” the taste of betrayal soon hits Claire’s palate. But not for Jamie, if not for Malva. How could she do this to her? Why? She always treated her with kindness, tried to teach her everything she knows, supported her in her aspirations, and made a place for her in her house, in her family… and Malva betrays her in this way.
Because Malva is the only one who betrayed her. Because of that dream and despite it, Claire knows instinctively that it’s all a lie. It has to be. Jamie wouldn’t blame Claire if she believed Malva, not after everything she says and they way things look. But Claire doesn’t, she can’t. They went through too much together to believe her. Because if she believes it, it would mean that everything she and Jamie have is a lie.
She gave up her whole life for what they have. Brianna did the same and so did Roger. She loves him and chose him over everything. Claire can’t imagine that this is all a lie, she’s not ready for it, and she never will be. And she knows she doesn’t have to be because what they have is the most real thing she’s ever felt or had in her life.
Jamie and Claire have been through a lot of trials together…and Claire knows Jamie more than she knows herself. She, therefore, knows that he couldn’t do it, that he never would, no matter what Malva says. Claire knows it’s a lie. She’s hurt by Malva’s betrayal and what they will lose because of it but she is not worried for a second about Jamie. She has unshakable faith in him.
“WHO THE HELL IS MARY MACNAB?”
And Jamie admires that faith so much…it’s the same faith that he has in her. But she also makes him feel guilty because he did betray her once, not with Malva, but still he… feels like he did. And he can’t stand that she doesn’t know, much less after what she just confessed to him.
He always felt guilty for not telling her but, after what happened with Laoghaire, he didn’t want to risk losing her again and everything seemed so insignificant with her in his arms and back with him… that he ended up burying it in the back of his mind and did not tell her.
So an apology is in order, it’s just that this is the worst possible time. Jamie is apologizing and just now he refused to because he wasn’t guilty of anything. This makes Claire flinch. Is it possible that he…? Was she wrong and what they have is a lie? Did she sacrifice everything…for nothing? The terror that we see in her eyes at this moment in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” is felt in the air and gets into our bones.
Is this the end? Nothing could be further from the truth. When Jamie confesses to Claire about Mary, and how and when it happened, Claire feels a mixture of relief, jealousy, frustration, and anger. Of all the moments…Jamie decides to tell her then and with those precise words that made her…goodness, Jamie needs to take a course on when to break the news!
Claire doesn’t blame him or Mary for what happened. Claire understands that Jamie only held on to Mary to try to feel something, to try to feel that he was alive. After all, didn’t she do the same with Frank? They were both dead in life, barely half alive, and needed to try. They both needed to, at least, attempt to feel comfortable, to feel that they could go on without each other, just to feel something.
But that didn’t happen. Not really. Mary gave Jamie the comfort he needed but it was just that fleeting moment and Claire never got to feel anything real with Frank after Jamie. But it was the only thing they both could do.
That doesn’t mean that Claire doesn’t feel jealous or that she doesn’t feel a pang at the thought of Jamie caressing another woman…but she can understand it, and rationalize it. Claire, as Jamie did with Frank, can understand how things turned out, they were both separated and thought they would never see each other again. Claire was sure that Jamie would never betray her and she was right, he never did.
The foundation on which their love is built is too solid for anyone to threaten it, especially someone like Malva. But we feel that things, to paraphrase Claire, are going to get worse before they get better. As we discussed in the previous episode, Claire now needs the ether to calm her nerves, she doesn’t know or can’t do it any other way. And when she used it in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” something happened with Malva.
DREAMS AND REALITIES
We don’t believe for a second that Claire killed Malva. That dream she had with her was a hallucination, Claire’s fears and demons rearing their ugly head in a restless dream caused by everything that was happening. But something is real: Malva went looking for her. She called out Claire’s name and headed towards her house but why? After everything that happened between them, why would she risk looking for her? It had to be for something important.
But Malva didn’t arrive on time. Someone attacked her before she could talk to Claire. And, despite what it may seem, Claire was not the one who did it. It was someone else but who? And why? It’s clear that Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” made everything so confusing on purpose so that even Claire would think that she is to blame for Malva’s death but we didn’t fall into the trap for a moment.
Our heads spin trying to figure out who and why someone killed Malva, but one thing we are sure of is that it wasn’t Claire. We can only wonder, will everyone be as sure as we are?
TRAUMA AND DOUBT
Despite Claire’s unwavering faith, we can’t blame Bree for having second thoughts in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down.” She’s seen her parents together and how they just fit because they were born to be together. Bree knows that her parents are soulmates and that neither of them could ever love anyone else, much less betray each other.
Bree has never seen two people that love each other so much, overcome so much and chose each other every day as they do. But Bree also thought the same thing with Frank and Claire. You see, I always thought that Frank and Claire’s decision to pretend to be together to raise Bree was really bad. Precisely for this.
She grew up living a lie, not only about her origins but also about the relationship between her parents. When she was little, in her innocence, she thought that her parents loved each other but, as she grew older, that image of the ideal family began to crack.
Suddenly, Bree realized that her mother wasn’t happy and took refuge in her work because she didn’t love Frank, she realized that Claire wasn’t the only woman in Frank’s life. Brianna realized that her parents were not happy. And that left a mark on her, a trauma that she had no time to overcome or process.
Bree believed the fairy tale they created for her and it turned out to be a lie. That made trust an issue for her and she didn’t trust her instincts.
Brianna rationally knows that, as Roger tells her, Jamie and Claire’s relationship cannot be compared to Claire’s relationship with Frank. She also knows that her father loves her mother in a way that goes beyond this world. Bree knows that if there is a life after this one, her father and her mother will continue to love each other in it. She also knows that her father is an honorable man who would never fail her mother in that way.
But the trauma she couldn’t process rears its ugly head through a voice that keeps repeating to her “you thought the same thing about Claire and Frank, what if…?” And, for her life, she can’t help but have a small, irrational part of her that doubts the veracity of what Jamie says.
Bree feels guilty about it, for doubting her father like that, but she can’t help it. It’s not rational, but that’s the trauma for you, it’s not meant to be rational. Brianna, in her heart, knows that what Malva says is a lie but she doesn’t trust her instincts because she already did it once… and it was all a lie.
She was wrong. Isn’t it logical to think that she may be wrong now too? So she feels that she has to double-check here and think of all the possibilities, even though it pains her to think of them. And I like that Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” did this, highlighting the trauma that Bree didn’t process and how it affects her daily life, even though she doesn’t even realize it.
“YOUR FATHER IS A GOOD PERSON”
Roger is the voice of reason at this point in Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down.” Outlander season 6 established the character that Roger was always meant to be and it was about damn time! Roger listens to Brianna understandingly, not judging her but not letting the doubts caused by her trauma sink deep into her. He fights her doubts and her bad thoughts with the reality of the situation. But, above all, he is there, right next to her, supporting her, not letting her fall.
Roger’s love, respect, and admiration for Jamie are printed all over his face. What he knows is that Jamie is a good person and that’s…huge coming from Roger. Jamie turned him over to the Indians and he went through hell because of him. But Jamie also went to rescue him when he realized his mistake, allowing his nephew to make the exchange for him. Jamie accepted him as the son of his house, as part of his family.
Roger understands why Jamie did what he did, he thought he was doing justice for his daughter, protecting someone he loved. And Roger understands because he would have done the same. So he doesn’t hold a grudge against Jamie for what happened.
Staying in the 18th century allowed Roger to really get to know Jamie. And he realizes what a good man Jamie is and that he’s capable of giving everything to the people he loves, including Roger. That’s one of the many reasons why Roger looks up to him.
And the relationship between these two is the glow-up we needed in Outlander season 6. More scenes of them, please and thank you!
“NO ONE CAN HELP ME, NO ONE CAN SAVE ME”
Malva’s rumor spreads at breakneck speed across the Ridge and becomes a fact to everyone who lives there. Soon, everyone on the Ridge forgets that Jamie and Claire not only gave them land to work and a roof over their heads but gave them and their families home, protecting them in any way they could.
The people of the Ridge are a bunch of ungrateful people who forget that Jamie is a good person and that he and Claire don’t deserve to be turned away…but that’s just what they do. Malva is the main culprit for this, but Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down” makes us wonder why. I mean, what is Malva looking for with this?
It could easily be what Roger imagines it to be – land, riches, and a handsome, good man by her side – but we have a feeling it’s something more. It’s clear that Malva is evil and always had bad intentions. But her brother Allen was the one who encouraged her to speak in the House when Claire was looking at her questioningly and Jamie was in her presence, almost as if she didn’t want to say a thing.
And it was also Allen who approached, vigilant, just when Malva was crying uncontrollably and it seemed that she was going to tell Claire something important. “No one can help me, no one can save me.” What did Malva mean by that? Malva faked a lot of things but those tears…those tears seemed genuine, real, and disconsolate.
It’s almost as if Malva didn’t want to betray Claire’s kindness and she desperately wants to confess something to her, seek help… but she doesn’t see a way to do it. It’s clear that something happened to Malva and that is the reason why she invented the lie about Jamie… and her brother knows it. Maybe she was raped and her brother wants to take advantage of it?
That, of course, doesn’t excuse or justify Malva, but it can help us try to understand her.
Other Stuff In Outlander 6×06 “The World Turned Upside Down”
- Claire’s slap to Malva resonated even on Mars. I neither confirm nor deny that I screamed when it happened.
- Roger and the genuine love he has for Claire have me.
- You have to be very magnanimous to treat the person who has just destroyed the life of your family so well. Too magnanimous…Claire should stop thinking of others so much by offering help to Malva and think of herself first.
- Jamie Fraser is still the King of Men for a reason.
- THAT cliffhanger. Things are going to get even worse…
- Can we have an episode of just Jamie and Claire loving moments? I mean, I would watch an eternity of that.
- Claire doesn’t look bad in garçon style but one of the reasons why I will never forgive Malva is for what she did with her hair.
- We finally know why Malva looked at Jamie’s scars and also where she gets her bones from (the corpse of the Sin Eater) and it’s even scarier than we thought.
- How was Malva able to poison Claire using the knowledge she taught her? I don’t know why but that makes me livid. It feels like a new level of betrayal. When I think I can’t despise her more…
- Claire has precognitive dreams and I love it! If she only learned how to interpret them…
- Tom’s reaction to seeing Claire’s new look… it’s clear that he doesn’t want her without her curls. Because it doesn’t feel like her… and he likes her.
- Jamie and his poor choice of words and moments…
- Ian and Claire’s conversation…I love it! He loves his uncle and his aunt and he would never forgive himself if something or someone hurt them because of him. And Claire is there to ease his heart, even though hers is broken.
- The scene where Claire tries unsuccessfully to save Malva’s baby is heartbreaking. She was thinking of Faith at the time. I have no doubts here.
Outlander season 6 airs Sundays at 9PM ET on STARZ.