'Outlander' Season 5 Episode 6 sees Roger and Brianna tackle a 'biblical plague'
When the scenes with the smoke being funneled over the fields to stop the 'plague' of locusts played out, it was impossible not to think of our own current 'plague' of coronavirus
One of the funniest lines in this week's episode is Roger Mackenzie (Richard Rankin) lament to his wife Brianna (Sophie Skelton). "When your father left me in charge, I thought I had to mend a fence, wrangle the odd runaway cow. But no, I get a biblical plague."
As Fraser's Ridge is overrun by a swarm of locusts, "Captain" Roger's leadership is called into question as the men of the Ridge worry about their crops utterly destroyed and nothing for the winter. They curse their luck at being stuck with Roger at a time like this instead of the real 'laird', Jamie Fraser.
Jamie and Claire are away, of course, at Jocasta's wedding wrangling with the likes of Phillip Wylie (Chris Donald) and setting up the revenge plan against Stephen Bonnet (Ed Speleers).
It has been a continuing theme this season of Roger earning his stripes, so to speak, after being named "Captain" by Jamie in the first episode. He keeps feeling he is letting down Jamie mucking up the responsibilities he has assigned him.
When in charge of the militia, for instance, he ended up losing the loyalty of the men when he had enough men to charge and overwhelm the Brown clan but he gave up one of his men to settle the clash.
Jamie, thankfully, comes back and sorts things out, even getting the Browns to sign up with his militia. Roger was sent back home to Fraser's Ridge with Jamie telling him that he made him Captain without teaching him what the job meant.
But despite this, Roger felt pressured to not fail him again. This is why it is so heartening to see Josiah Beardsley call him "Captain" or when the men come over to apologize after his scheme to save the crops from locusts works.
When the scenes with the smoke being funneled over the fields to stop the "plague" of locusts from landing played out, it was impossible not to think of our own current "plague" of coronavirus.
As the characters wrapped cloth masks around their faces to avoid inhaling the smoke, it looked eerily timed. How often is a "historical" period drama timely?
But that's 'Outlander' for you. It keeps surprising us every week. The show airs Sundays at 8/7c on Starz. Episodes are available on STARZ, the STARZ app, and STARZ On Demand.