[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers from Saturday night's Outlander. Read at your own risk!]
Jonathan "Black Jack" Randall (Tobias Menzies) is alive — and in France!
Saturday's episode of Outlander delivered the inevitable moment we've been waiting for since episode 2 when Claire (Caitriona Balfe) found out that Randall was alive. His re-emergence and subsequent devastating blow to Claire and Jamie's (Sam Heughan) relationship unfolded over three scenes, each more stressful and heartbreaking than the last.
Part 1: The first sighting
Of course it was Annalise (Margaux Chatelier) who spotted Randall across the courtyard of Versailles. It felt like a punch to the stomach as soon as Claire turned to spot the human embodiment of disgust.
It's the mark of a true villain that just the sight of him made everyone — on and off screen — gasp at first sight of his face. He and Claire entered into a tete-a-tete of very thinly veiled threats. After months, Claire finally confronted the man who made her husband suicidal — the man who tormented him into cheating on her — and she must keep her cool.
With every moment that passed, and every vile sentence that came out of Randall's mouth, you wished another herd of cattle would stampede the grounds of Versailles.
Part 2: Jamie arrives
The cattle didn't show up, but Jamie did. He'd been jubilant since finding out that Randall is indeed alive purely because it means that he can be the one to drive a sword through the heart of his torturer. The immediate fear was that Jamie wouldn't be able to contain his bloodlust and will kill Randall right in front of the king, who luckily showed up before Jamie could get ahead of himself.
In fact, the King Louis (Lionel Lingelser) had a little fun of his own as he made Randall get to his knees and beg for his brother's job back. It felt so good to see it happen, but it was nerve-wracking when you know how Randall reacts to people laughing at him (it usually includes rape, beatings or both).
The tension broke just long enough for Jamie to challenge Randall to a duel. Jamie will get his chance to finally end the man that has haunted his nightmares for months and reclaim his soul after all the horrible things he's been through.
Step 3: The betrayal
Just kidding. The most devastating blow of the whole affair actually came after Randall left the Frasers. Claire sabotaged Jamie's plans to duel and begged him to wait one year before killing Randall. It's a desperate act to try and save Frank's ancestral line — and perhaps the decision that ruins the Frasers' attempts to prevent the Scottish rebellion. Honestly, Claire.
Their fight was a heartbreaking reveal of how far apart they've grown since they arrived in Paris. Jamie reluctantly agreed to her request, but it's clear that what Claire has done is unforgivable. As horrifying as Randall's treatment of Jamie was in the first season, it's his ability to come between Jamie and Claire that makes him the most threatening presence on the show — whether he's on screen or not.
Will the Frasers be able to come back after Claire's betrayal? Moreover, what damage is Randall capable of if Jamie and Claire are further apart than they've ever been? We need a drink just thinking about it.
Outlander continues Saturdays at 9/8c on Starz.
(All GIFs via Giphy)