In many ways, Caitriona Balfe is Claire Fraser. Once a delicate fashion model who worked for some of the most luxurious brands in the world, Caitriona took the character of Claire and both completely incorporated her, and made it her own. Even for fans of the books who had their own pre-conceived idea of how Claire should look and act, it became hard to imagine the character without Caitriona popping into their minds.
And bringing a character to life is not an easy task! Especially one that is already beloved by thousands of people who have read the source material. But nonetheless, Balfe made a stellar job, and she became the Claire Fraser we all deserved. Let's look a little bit deeper into this, and check out 10 mannerisms from the book that the actress completely nails.
With a fiery temper that doesn't have time for any sort of nonsense, Claire would always require an exclamation to portray her feelings. And we need to praise both the actress and the show writers for making a point to include Claire's favorite exclamation from the books in the show.
"Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ!" is the character's preferred way to showcase impatience, disbelief, and annoyance. So much so that Claire says it over fifty times throughout the books. And Caitriona's delivery of it is always on point!
9 Ahead Of Her Time
In the books, it's clear from the get-go that Claire is a woman completely ahead of her time. A strong personality paired with years and years in a war environment is the perfect recipe for a strong-headed, independent woman who doesn't like to take orders from anyone. This was something Caitriona would have to showcase in both centuries.
And portray it, she did! From her disapproving looks to her refusal to accept the gender-roles that society wanted to force upon her, Caitriona did a beautiful job of providing the audience with one of the most important features of Claire's character.
8 Putting On A Brave Face
When you spent six years as a war nurse, you're bound to become a brave individual who knows how to deal with extremely tense situations. Claire is a woman who not only went through that, she also wen through being sexually assaulted, leaving her husband to die, and raising a child with a man she didn't love.
Claire's bravery is one of the staples of her personality, which would be incomplete without her displays of consistent courage and ability to look pain in the face and destroy it. Or, in the very least, live with it. This is yet another core point that Caitriona nailed and deserves to be praised for.
7 Fiery Temper
It's pretty clear to anyone who watches fice minutes of Outlander that Claire isn't here for anyone's nonsense. Literally, she will look at anyone who tries to boss her around or tell her how she should behave and what she should do and walk away laughing. Only after she tells them to go to hell, of course.
Even when it comes to her husband, Claire will speak her mind and defy him when need be. And Caitriona's acting skills shine every time her character is put in a situation like that. The best part? Her daughter Brianna clearly inherited her mother's personality and amplified it to an almost annoying degree.
6 Stubbornness Is The Word
Here is a word of advice to any men that might potentially cross Claire's path: she will not take orders from you. Claire's stubbornness can actually be frustrating at times and create some serious disasters along the way. Fans are all here for her defying the ones that need to be defied, but sometimes she needs to take a step back.
But obviously, she doesn't. And Caitriona was quick to pick up on that, because every single time she needs to portray one of Claire's "I will get my way" moments, she knocks it out of the park.
5 The Hands Of A Healer
One of the best things about Claire is that she knows how to keep her fiery temper and stubbornness away when it's time to perform. At her core, Claire is a healer, a nurse, a doctor. And all of these things demand a professional person to keep their cool even through the most pressure-inducing circumstances.
No matter what her surroundings are, when Claire is healing, she's healing. Her hands are steady, her head is focused. Whether it is amputating a leg, or pulling out a tooth, she won't break a sweat. And Balfe clearly learned just how to make that translate into the screen.
4 A Forehead Touch
When it comes to physical characteristics, Claire's hair is her most dominant feature. It's wild and curly, and it's a fantastic nod to the mane of a lion. Because if there is one animal that Claire can relate to, that's a lion. And every time she ties her beautiful locks, they're bound to escape a little bit.
Noticed how she often uses the back of her hand to brush her forehead and keep those stray hairs at bay? That's classic book Claire and a beautiful detail that adds even more dimension to the character of Claire, one that Caitriona once again nails.
3 Husband Or Not, I Don't Care
There is a particularly interesting moment in the books when Claire tells Jamie "go to hell, Jamie. Go directly to hell. Do not pass Go. Do not collect two hundred dollars". Aside from the hilarious Monopoly reference, this is one of the many ways we understand the couple's relationship, and how Claire's nature won't be tamed just because she's married.
Even though we missed out on this brilliant piece of dialogue on the show, we still had plenty of moments when we saw Claire being Claire. Disagreeing with Jamie, telling him like it is, insulting him...you know, Claire things. Claire things that might was well be Caitriona things.
2 Pass The Scotch
Three things that Claire loves: Jamie, Brianna, and alcohol. Okay, this almost makes her sound like a deranged addict, but that's not where we're going with this. Claire Fraser can handle her liquor, thank you very much! And she loves it.
Thankfully, the show made a point to display Claire's love for alcoholic drinks, and Scotch in particular. It's not extremely in your face, but it's there. And it's just one of those small, yet great details that add dimension to the character. Plus, it makes book lovers happy!
1 Motherly Love
While Claire's relationship with Brianna was always somewhat strained due to obvious circumstances, one can never doubt her deep love for her daughter. Claire might be a stubborn, fiery woman, but she has motherly instincts that will scare away the scariest of beasts.
Even when she was dealing with a young Fergus, you could see that her heart was, in many ways, destined to be innundated by motherly love. It's things like these that show the softer side of Claire, and Caitriona managed to present her character with all the shapes and dimensions she deserves.