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June 19 2016 @ 11:40 am
Possible explanation for lower ratings  
I know sireesanwar regularly mentions the fact that the show seems to be losing viewers as it goes along. My gut instinct has always been that with this season, because the focus has been more on plot and less on sex, it was going to lose people.

In the books, there are regular interludes of Jamie-Claire romance, but given the complexity of the actual PLOT of the story in Dragonfly in Amber (and other books going forward -- Outlander was actually a very simple, rather straightforward tale), there had to be less focus on those sorts of moments given the limited time available to tell the story. And I think a lot of people who mostly just really loved the intimacy between Claire and Jamie in season 1 (and naked Sam hotness) and in the books, were going to be sorely put off. I read a number of online episode recaps from different media sources, and while the majority of reader comments are very positive, there are always a good number of people who post things like this (From the ep 211 recap on Variety):

In the books, Claire and Jamie were making out no matter where they were – so far this season has been low on showing good sex and they need to have it before the season ends, or else it will be an incredibly boring season!

It's not just non-book readers who feel that way -- the person who posted the above comment obviously read the books. I think one's desire/willingness to stick with the show is going to be largely dependent on if you love the books primarily for the Jamie-Claire love stuff, or if you enjoy them primarily for all the other stuff -- the history in particular. That is my main attraction -- in fact, I often sort of skip over the more intimate stuff in the books because I'm more interested in the main action/plot.

I am always so tempted to reply to comments such as the one above with a suggestion that if they're only into this for the sex, maybe they should just go download some porn or something. Yes, the chemistry between Sam and Caitriona on screen is marvellous and truly does justice to the Claire-Jamie relationship in the books, but these books have hugely complex, detailed plots. If you're going to condense 1000+ page historical action novels into 13 one-hour episodes, something has to take a back seat. I think they've done an admirable job in showing how the Claire-Jamie relationship has evolved this season -- it's simply not necessary to have a sex scene between the two of them every episode -- nor do they have the luxury of time for that.

Anyway, that is my theory.
ride_4ever (or Ride_Forever: seen it both ways): Outlander - some like it Scotride_4ever on June 19th, 2016 07:24 pm (UTC)
Good post! ♡
Jo Ann: Out: J above C kissing heryeuxdebleu on June 22nd, 2016 06:11 am (UTC)
I love the historical parts, too, and if they showed excessive sex scenes, I think that would be boring.
Jill aka Josireesanwar on June 28th, 2016 07:30 pm (UTC)
I agree with you. Jamie and Claire are in love but not every episode has to be about sex. Admittedly, a squeeze or kiss here and there wouldn't go astray. I did like that in the recent episode 212. They arrive in camp and Jamie kisses her goodbye to go talk to the commanders. Love isn't always about overwhelming passion. The fact that they want to kiss each other goodbye is a great sign in their relationship.

And you are right, there are many things to go over.