Outlander’s Book-to-TV Adaptation Might Become the Blueprint to Follow

Jenna selfie

It is always a great fear of book lovers to be wary of any book-to-screen adaptation of a series they love. In fact, it is quite impossible for any book fan to truly love a show or movie because something is always left out of the screenplays as it is being adapted. Instances include Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, the Harry Potter series, Game of Thrones, and many, many more.


However, this reader has happened to find a show that really embodies the words upon the monumental pages of the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon, and really loves the way the story is coming to life every week.
If you’re unfamiliar with Outlander, here’s a very short summary: a WWII nurse is on vacation in Scotland in 1946, she is transported back in time two hundred years, and has to learn to live life as an outsider in the world she stumbled into. (Of course, there are many more details than that, but I can’t give it all away or you won’t want to watch the show!)

I have to give props to the crew at Starz for doing such a spectacular performance, and for allowing the author herself to have a lot of say as to what is detrimental to the plot-line, and what can be cut. They have done a splendid job of depicting many details of the scenes of Gabaldon’s bestseller: the locations, the dialogue, the costumes, the kilts! It is all there.

One thing the Starz folks got right was the people who would portray these characters, and bringing them to life.

Photo: Starz
         Photo: Starz

The actors who were chosen for the roles of Claire Beauchamp Randall, Jonathan Randall, Dougal Mackenzie, and the always favorite Jamie Fraser are spot on. I admit, I was very leery of the choices at the very beginning of filming when the cast was announced, but like any true novel fan, no one is ever good enough to play the beloved roles you have cast yourself when reading. (I really do think that Domnhall Gleeson and Kelly Macdonald would have made fine choices for the leads of Claire and Jamie, but I am very happy with the directors’ choice of Caitriona Balfe for Claire and Sam Heughan for Jamie.)

Of course, there are little nuances that have been removed that I had been looking forward to; however, like all book-to-screen variations there will always be something left out much to the reading audiences’ dismay. Unfortunately, there are very few things we can do about that, but one being going back and reading the novels and assuring ourselves that the beloved series won’t turn out like that of the Southern Vampire series True Blood on HBO. (Talk about taking creative licensing with a lot of the plot-lines.)

I can see great things ahead for this series, which has already been signed for its second season. Just knowing what happens next really makes waiting an entire week a nail-biting endeavor in patience. But I know that all this waiting is for the best, especially when it comes to the sparks between the lead characters.

This Geek definitely suggests adding it to your Fall line-up as Outlander has a little bit of everything for everyone: history, fantasy, romance, and mystery. It is well worth the time to watch.

Stay tuned because Outlander airs on the Starz network Saturday nights at 9pm.

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