Hey, y’all! I know I’m still behind, but I’m trying to catch up, so let’s jump right into this review, shall we?
We start off with Jamie meeting with the governor of North Carolina, signing his deed to Fraser’s Ridge, which is a whopping 10,000 acres of land! I looked it up; that’s 15 square miles! I failed to mention this before, but it was discussed in “America the Beautiful” that Jamie making this land deal with the governor could prove to be detrimental. When the American Revolution comes in the next few years—and it will come—the governor may consider Jamie to be on the side of the British since he accepted this deed, which means he’ll have to fight for them when the war starts. As we all know, the British lose the war, and the folks that were British sympathizers ended up losing the land they had…if they even survived.
The governor asks Jamie if he’ll has any other settlers coming to the property, and Jamie tells him he has his best man (Fergus) putting out the word. The governor warns Jamie to be careful who he lets on his land, considering that there’s “regulators” protesting against the tax collectors, and even some of the lawmen are stealing the tax dollars when policing the radicals. I have a feeling this will be an important piece of info later on.
Before setting back out to Fraser’s Ridge, Claire goes to get some provisions. Marsali tells her that she would’ve packed some food for Claire herself, but thanks to her morning sickness, she can’t even think about anything edible. Marsali appears to be sad, and Claire asks her what’s wrong. It turns out that she misses her crazy ass mama. I have to be honest, even though I can’t stand Laoghaire’s nasty ass, I totally get where Marsali is coming from. I’m damn near 40 myself, but whenever I feel sick, it’s so comforting to have my mom nearby. Claire comforts Marsali, and tells Jamie that when she was pregnant with Brianna, she desperately wanted her mother there with her. Claire worries about Brianna and sometimes wonders if she should’ve stayed with her. Jamie tells Claire that when they were separated, he held on to her memory to keep him going. He says that Brianna will do the same thing.
The family leaves for Fraser’s Ridge and starts setting up posts around the property boundaries. While doing so, Jamie steps in some animal poo (gross), and Ian wonders what creatures may be roaming in their neck of the woods. Claire informs him of the mountain lions and bears that might be in the area. Just then, the Fraser/Murray family receives a visit from the Native Americans themselves…some smokin’ hot Native Americans at that.
Jamie, never letting his guard down, drops his knife and shows them that he’s all about peace. They men ride off, but they return a few days later, saying something to him and the others in Cherokee. I’m sure it was something along the lines of, “Get off our land! We were here first!” Later that night, Claire confesses to Jamie that she feels like the Native American ghost she saw a few nights before may have been warning her that they’re not supposed to be on that land. Jamie insists that the ghost brought them to the area and that the mountain spoke to him. They’re right where they’re supposed to be. He just wishes he could communicate with the Cherokee to let them know that they mean them no harm. Claire suggests making a gesture of goodwill to them. Jamie agrees and and says that he’ll talk with Mr. Meyers in the morning.
When they go to sleep that night, they hear some rustling in the woods. At first, they think it’s the Cherokee coming back, but when their horse returns seriously wounded with scratches, Claire deduces that it’s a bear. Jamie sees Mr. Meyers the next day and tells him what happened. Mr. Meyers says that the Cherokee have been talking about tskili yona (pronounced “scheely yonah”) for the last few weeks, which is Cherokee for a bear that’s a bit more than the average bear.
Old heads like me understand that reference. 😉😉
Some time later, the Cherokee are meeting for some type of ritual. Nearby, the Fraser/Murray clan is turning in for the night, when they hear yet again another noise outside. When they head outside to check it out, they see Mr. Meyers outside, mauled by a bear and hanging on by a thread. The only thing the poor man is able to do is repeat the words tskili yona. Claire rushes him in their makeshift hut, shifting instantly in doctor mode. Jamie goes out to find the bear. Meanwhile, the Cherokee ritual shows a medicine woman smoking a peace pipe and reciting a type of chant, while the others dance as if they were bears.
While Claire’s trying to save Mr. Meyers, she notices a bite on his neck and realizes that what’s been harassing them all this time wasn’t a bear at all. At that same moment, Jamie is attacked by the true culprit: a man dressed as a bear. Jamie and the man fight, and thanks to the fact that he disarms Jamie right away and is armed himself with a knife and fake claws, he has the upper hand right off the bat. As they’re fighting, Jamie notices one of his property posts nearby, and he manages to run from the dude just long enough to get to the post and pry it from the ground. As expected, the bear-guy rushes Jamie and falls on the sharp end, which impales him through the chest. Ouch.
Jamie takes the body to the Cherokee and greets them as Mr. Meyers instructed. The hottest one out of the tribe—I’ll just call him Hot Guy—asks Jamie in English if he killed the faux bear. Jamie tells them that he did, and the dude wasn’t some type of mystical bear; he was just a man. Hot Guy replies that they knew he was just a man. A while back, he raped his wife and that’s against Cherokee custom, so they banned him from their village. The dude’s harassed them ever since, and basically lost his everlovin’ mind in the process. Jamie asks if there’ll be anymore trouble from the tribe. Hot Guy tells Jamie that death follows white men. Jamie assures him that his family has come in peace.
Thankfully, Mr. Meyers survives his attack, and the Cherokee people visit the Fraser/Murray family to let it be known that they can co-exist in peace. They’ve even bestowed the name “Bear Killer” to Jamie (Ian got a kick out of that!). I swear, this man has too many doggone names. Jamie invites the Cherokee to eat and the medicine woman tells Claire that she had a dream about her, and that Claire will grow to be a wise healer, with a great deal of medicine to cure the sick. She also tells Claire that death comes from the gods and “it” will not be her fault. Claire is understandably confused.
Later on, Jamie, Claire and Young Ian continue working on Fraser’s Ridge, as well as their new home. In a very sweet scene, Jamie carries Claire over the threshold of their unfinished house, describing how the finished product will look, blissfully unaware of the tragedy that will befall them.
A year has passed, and Roger is still sulking over his botched proposal to Brianna. In a moment of nostalgia, he pulls out the drawing that an artist sketched of himself and Brianna while at the Scottish Festival, and he also reads a bit of the book Bree gave him a as gift. The book is about Scottish people that settled in North Carolina during the early colonial days, and in it, there’s a passage that gives some information about Fraser’s Ridge. Roger hits up the author, and within a few weeks, she provides him with documents detailing Claire and Jamie’s time together on their land. Roger decides to call Bree with his newfound info.
Brianna, who’s still in Boston (with a foxy black roommate with the perfect ’70s ‘fro), is happy to hear from Roger (apparently, she’s told her roommate all about him, too…proof that Brianna has strong feelings for him…although he wants to act a damn fool), and she’s even more psyched to learn that her mother found her biological father. However, when Roger gives the news to his childhood friend Fi—who knew about Claire traveling through time all along—she gives Roger other documents revealing that Claire and Jamie die in a tragic fire on Fraser’s Ridge a few years after they find each other!!!
Roger tries to make another phone call to Brianna to give her the bad news, but her roommate, Gail, drops a bomb on him. Brianna traveled to Scotland to “visit” her mother. Sorry y’all, but I have to post another GIF for this revelation.
Yep, that ’bout sums it up.
This episode was…decent. The first time I watched it, it didn’t really hold my interest until the “bear” started wreaking havoc on the family. The second time around, I found myself slightly more invested in the story, but it’s still not exactly hooking me into it. However, we’re coming up on episode five now (once again, I know I’m behind), and Ms. Brianna decided to walk her rump through those stones and enter an era she’s not familiar with (reading about something and experiencing it firsthand are two different things), so things should start to pick up very soon.
I can’t wait to see Jamie’s finished house. They show a glimpse of it in the opening credits, so I know it’s going to be nice, but I want a full tour. I also can’t wait for Brianna to be reunited with her mom and meet her father for the first time. That’s really gonna be interesting. From what I’ve heard, Roger will go through the stones himself to find his woman, so these next few episodes should be chock full of drama, and hopefully I won’t feel like I’m watching a TV series as an assignment for my history class. By the way, I’m really feelin’ those Native American men. Be still, my beating heart. ❤️❤️
—Written by Nadiya
How did y’all feel about “Common Ground”? Was it a great episode, or just average? Do you think Jamie will be able to keep Fraser’s Ridge? Will Brianna and Roger find them in the 1700’s and save them from the fire? What do you think about Brianna going back in time? Do you believe The Frasers and the Native Americans can truly live in peace? Are you psyched to see Jamie’s new house? Let me know in the comments section!