Outlander is a breathtakingly beautiful historical fiction drama that tells one of the most romantic stories we have seen on-screen. The love between Jamie and Claire is palpable in every scene. Part of why the show is so successful is in great part to its incredible female lead in Caitriona Balfe - who plays Claire Fraser. Claire Fraser is, of course, the WWII nurse who travels back in time while in Scotland at the standing stones of Craigh Na Dun. Once back in time, she finds herself in the world of a Highlander clan where she meets Jamie Fraser. They fall in love over the course of this story, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Caitriona Balfe plays the part of Claire with poise and grace while perfectly showing her vulnerability when necessary. Even better, she exudes strength and modernity in the role of the 40s-era nurse who wound up in 18th-century Scotland. While we love the character of Claire Fraser, there are still things about her that are flawed. Some of the things we wouldn't imagine tolerating under normal circumstances, but because she is such a beloved and strong female character, we tend to overlook them.
Even the minor problematic traits she has are easily ignored due to all of the amazing things about her as a person. It's perfectly understandable that we knowingly ignore certain problems with Claire, but maybe we should at least acknowledge them every so often.
Outlander fans, it's time to read about the 25 Things Wrong With Claire We All Choose To Ignore.
25 Claire Is Very Stubborn
Claire from the very beginning has been known as a very strong, independent, modern woman. Which is definitely something we can applaud.
But there are times her independence and strength turns to pure stubbornness and gets her and those around her in trouble. How often did she refuse to see things for what they were for the time period she found herself in? There were multiple times she could have tried to see it from a different person’s perspective instead of letting her stubborn ways get the best of her. She just couldn’t bring herself to do it.
24 She Fell In Love With Jamie - While Married To Another Man
Here’s the thing - we all love Jamie. We absolutely could not imagine a world where Jamie and Claire didn’t end up together. It would honestly be blasphemy if it had gone down that way.
However, Claire falling madly and deeply in love at an alarming rate while still married to another man - her first husband, Frank, would ordinarily be a bit hard to swallow. We get the circumstances led to their sudden marriage to help keep her safe, but falling for Jamie didn’t necessarily have to happen. Especially when Frank was still sort of in the picture.
23 She Left Bree For Jamie
Okay, so we know Bree encouraged her to do this but it’s pretty hard to imagine a mother leaving her only daughter - presumably forever - to find her true love once again. Of course, it would be a near impossible decision to make if we were in Claire’s shoes, but the fact she seemed to agree to this so quickly was jarring.
We know she obviously missed Bree during their time apart before Bree met with them in North Carolina in season 4, but it’s still hard to figure out how she made the decision to leave her in the first place so easily.
22 It Took Her Twenty Years To Try And Find Jamie
On the other side of the coin, it’s also quite baffling that it took Claire so long to pursue finding out what happened to Jamie. She hadn’t done this since she first came back through the stones because of Frank. But with her being so madly in love with Jamie, even if she hadn’t wanted to or been able to go back to his time, wouldn’t she still want to know if he truly died that day on the battlefield in Culloden?
We know Claire loves Jamie with every fiber of her being, so why did it take a run-in with Roger Wakefield to get her on track with finding where Jamie is in the 18th-century?
21 She Warned Geillis Even After Suspecting Her Of Ending Her Husband
Before the infamous witch trial episode, Claire had her own suspicions about her new eccentric friend, Geillis. She was well aware she practiced witchcraft, but also suspected that she had used these practices to end the lives of both her own husband, as well as Dougal’s wife.
This was because Geillis and Dougal were carrying on a relationship and Geillis was with child.
Even though Claire strongly believed Geillis had done something to her own husband, she still went off to warn Geillis of the upcoming witch trial to help her get out of there. Not that anyone should be put through something that horrific, but why would Claire still be so loyal to her dishonorable friend?
20 Claire Gets Jealous Over Jamie And Laoghaire (A Lot)
There is no denying that Laoghaire is one of the most hated characters on Outlander. The young girl who fell for Jamie before he married Claire was positive Claire had put a spell on Jamie to make him fall in love with her - literally.
This led to Laoghaire accusing Claire of witchcraft. But Laoghaire continued to be a thorn in the sides of Claire and Jamie off and on throughout the series.
While we understand Claire’s disdain of Laoghaire after all they’ve been through, we don’t understand the moments she seems jealous of her. Jamie has always loved Claire and Claire only. He never felt that way about Laoghaire, so what’s with the jealousy?
19 She Wouldn’t Let Jamie Duel Black Jack Randall Because Of Frank
Black Jack Randall is hands down the vilest character to ever be on the Starz series. He enjoys harming people, most notably Jamie and Claire. His obsession with Jamie led to a brutal attack on the Scotsmen at the end of season 1 and permanently scarred Jamie both literally and figuratively.
So when they were in France and Jamie had a chance to duel with Black Jack, it was disappointing that Claire stopped him. All because she didn’t want him to end Randall’s life in fear it would cut off his lineage to Frank, her first husband.
At this point, she had chosen Jamie and left Frank in the rearview mirror. We get she didn’t want to end his life, but shouldn’t she have at least considered Jamie’s need to rid himself of the man who hurt him on multiple occasions?
18 Claire Can Be A Hot Head
Along with Claire’s strong and stubborn nature, she also has the tendency to be quite a hot head when she wants to be. She lets her anger take over and gets into fights with not only Jamie but many different important people such as Dougal or the other Scots she is surrounded by.
Obviously, it’s understandable that Claire loses her temper now and again. But she does it so often and usually with little information to go off of to make her so angry, that it can be alarming and even off-putting at times.
17 She Doesn’t Listen To Jamie When He Knows Better
Jamie Fraser’s main goal in life is to love Claire and keep her safe. He would do absolutely anything for her - and has. So it has never made a lot of sense when Claire disregards Jamie’s warnings after he has explicitly told her how things work in 18th-century Scotland.
Time and time again, Jamie tries to teach Claire the nature of being a woman during his time in Scotland, to no avail. Claire still decides to always do things her own way, which more often than not, gets herself and Jamie in trouble.
16 She Tried To Go Back To Frank After Falling In Love With Jamie
This is one of those scenarios where it’s hard to find what the actual right thing to do was. Should Claire have gone back to Frank instead of staying with hunky Jamie? Or did she make the right call in choosing Jamie over her first love Frank?
She chose a new love over everything she once knew with Frank. But before she made the incredibly difficult choice, she debated for a long time about going back to Frank. In fact, after she was attacked by Redcoat Soldiers, she nearly went back through the stones to Frank. The unfortunate thing about this was she was already falling head over heels in love with Jamie. So it’s sad that she potentially would have given that up for stability with Frank.
15 Claire Played A Part In The Comte’s End
The Comte St. Germain was a nefarious foe the Frasers came across during their time in France. Their status as enemies began after Claire informed onlookers publicly of the Comte’s ship being infested with smallpox.
They had many run-ins that caused turmoil for both parties, but in the end, it was Claire who got the last laugh. The King of France used Claire’s “powers” as La Dame Blanche to determine who was guilty of sorcery, she determined it was the Comte. He ended up drinking poison and his life was effectively over. While it makes sense that Claire would want this since the Comte was an evil man, she probably shouldn’t have stooped down to his level.
14 She Sometimes Forgets Her Actions Have Consequences
The time-travel aspect of Outlander can be confusing sometimes. It’s not even the main part of the storyline after a while, so it becomes increasingly hard to follow the actual rules of the space-time continuum.
But there are times that the actions Claire takes while back in time seem like they should directly affect the future. Yet, it doesn’t seem to even be a thought in Claire’s mind that that could happen. She takes action first and thinks about consequences later, which is not always the smartest road to go down.
13 She Regularly Forgets She's In The 18th-Century
One of Claire’s greatest strengths is also one of her greatest weaknesses. She is a fiercely independent and strong woman who basically doesn’t take crap from anyone. But this also is a serious problem for a woman in 1740s Scotland.
Women were looked at quite differently than they were in the 1940s, which is Claire’s original time. Being a modern woman who doesn’t answer to men was not only frowned upon but basically forbidden. So the fact that Claire ignores this and does what she wants leads to many terrible occurrences that could have subverted.
12 Claire Has Kept Secrets At Important Times
A lot of times on drama shows, there are instances where if someone had just spoken up and talked to another character, they would have saved themselves a lot of trouble. Claire has done this on numerous occasions.
She kept her knowledge of Black Jack Randall’s survival from Jamie while in France, and then she kept Bree’s assault a secret from him in season 4. Both of those examples prove that if she had just talked to Jamie one on one and confided in him, they wouldn’t have so many problems created from it.
11 She Conspired With Jamie To Get Rid Of Bonnie Prince Charlie
All throughout season 2, Jamie and Claire’s goal was to stop the Jacobite Rebellion from happening so that they wouldn’t eventually end up on the battlefield at the Battle of Culloden. This was to save all of their friends and family from their sure finales.
When they finally arrived at the fateful day at Culloden, they knew they were running out of options. They started to come up with a plan to end the Bonnie Prince Charlie’s life with poison. They, of course, don’t follow through with it. But not before Dougal hears everything…
10 She Assisted Jamie In Eliminating Dougal
When Dougal walked in on Jamie and Claire conspiring to poison Prince Charles Edward Stuart, he immediately became furious. He unleashed this fury on Jamie and Claire, and soon became entwined in a fight to the end with his nephew, Jamie.
It eventually got to a point where Claire could help Jamie end this fight, and did so by helping stab Dougal with a dirk and ending his life on the spot. Obviously, the Frasers didn’t have much of a choice if they wanted to make it out of there alive, but it was intense to see Claire end the life of another - again.
9 Claire Agreed To Never Speak Of Jamie Once She Returned To Frank
In the season 2 premiere of Outlander, we quickly learned that Claire had somehow returned to her own time and reluctantly went back to Frank. After a tense discussion over where she’d been and her tale of falling in love with a Highlander, Frank agrees to take her back and to raise her child with Jamie.
As long as she didn’t ever bring him up again. She agrees to this, albeit sadly, and doesn’t speak of him ever again with Frank. While we understand she felt helpless and like it was the only way, we can’t imagine agreeing to never speak of our true love ever again.
8 She Imagined Jamie When She Was With Frank
We know that Claire was in immensely difficult circumstances and there really was no rulebook to go by when you’ve time traveled and fallen in love with another man, only to return to your first husband once again.
But the fact that Claire would still imagine herself with Jamie while with Frank to the point that Frank noticed is really hard to wrap your head around. At least, for Frank’s sake, it is. The poor guy just wanted his wife back and she couldn’t be in the moment with him even once. It just served to cause even more strain on their already fragile relationship.
7 Bree And Claire’s Relationship Was Seriously Strained
Before Claire and Bree connected and understood each other on a different level when it was revealed who Bree’s father was, there was a lot of tension between the mother/daughter duo. Bree was always much closer with her father, and Claire never really attempted to make that difference.
Claire always seemed to keep Bree at arm's length due to her significant resemblance to Jamie. It’s understandable it would be hard to see the spitting image of the man she loves so dearly in her daughter, but she should have made more efforts to have a closer relationship with her sooner.
6 She Lied To Bree About Who Her Father Was
All of Bree’s life, she believed Frank Randall was her biological father. He raised her as such, and Claire never told her otherwise. Even with her shocking red hair, she had no reason to believe any other man was her father.
But in reality, Jamie Fraser was her biological father. Claire never told her, which you could argue was because of how hard to believe the story was, but she should have been honest with her daughter about her lineage instead of Bree finding out spontaneously on her own. It would have saved them quite a lot of turmoil.
5 She Can Be Selfish
Don’t get us wrong, Claire has had plenty of moments of complete selflessness throughout the series. Whether it’s when she is healing the wounded and ailing or caring for those she loves on an emotional level, she has shown her empathy plenty of times.
But Claire also has moments where she is a bit selfish. She lets her love for Jamie cloud her judgment and all of her decisions are based around what would be the best option for themselves rather than the greater good. It’s understandable but not the best quality.
4 Claire Is Hypocritical
In season 3, there is a specific moment that Claire learns that Frank is having a relationship with another woman. She’s mortified to learn this on the night of her graduation from medical school.
She seethes at this information but her anger is completely irrational, not to mention hypocritical. Claire is holding onto her love for Jamie and is no longer even close with Frank because of it, yet she’s angry and possibly even jealous that Frank is carrying on a relationship? It just doesn’t make a lot of sense and shows she can be a hypocrite at times.
3 She Kept Frank In A Broken Marriage
Once she learned of Frank’s relationship, Claire should have let him go instead of carrying on their charade for Bree’s sake. Plus, Claire knew that deep down, Frank still loved her and was likely holding out hope for a reconciliation.
But instead, they stayed married for years after that. She was in the position of having to be the one to end things, but she never took that step until everything boiled over into a heated argument that would have dire consequences.
2 She Fought With Frank The Night He Met His End
No one could ever know when it will be a person’s time to leave this Earth. So it stands to reason that Claire had no idea what would happen after her intense argument with Frank.
But when Frank and Claire started arguing over Frank leaving her and taking Bree with him to England, everything got out of hand. Frank angrily left and later got into a horrific car accident. He didn’t make it out alive.
While Claire may have felt guilt over the incident, it was a serious tragedy that possibly could have been prevented. And more than that, Claire, unfortunately, can’t take back the things she said before the accident.
1 Claire Jumps To Conclusions Sometimes
This is another trait of Claire’s that causes more harm than good. Several times throughout the series, she has interactions with other character’s that ends up creating more drama because they don’t have a simple conversation.
Claire, in turn, will jump to conclusions that are not actually factual at all. Like the time she assumed Dougal was taking more money than he needed for rent for nefarious reasons when he was just supporting his cause of the Jacobite Rebellion. She just needed to talk to someone calmly about it instead of assuming the worst.