Outlander Fan Tales – Valerie

Valerie lives in Pennsylvania with her husband of 40 years.  She is a big fan of the show and appreciates not only the actors, but the whole of the production team. She has finally convinced her husband to give the show a go. So now, they can enjoy the show together and they hope to travel to Scotland one day.

Here is Valerie’s story.

I was born in Ohio, and when I was 2 years old, my family moved to Brazil, where I grew up.  I returned to the US for college, where I met my husband, in Kentucky.  We married one week after graduation and moved to Pennsylvania. We have four wonderful children who are all married and have given us seven precious grandchildren.  I was a stay at home mom for many years and since 2011, have worked as a teacher’s assistant in learning support at a middle school.  I am so grateful for my family, and to have a job where I can help students learn and grow. This summer and fall has been so busy.  I spent time with my out of town family (three daughters and their families) over the summer.  Now, our schools are open (I work at a middle school, grades 6-8) and we are all learning how to navigate with a new system in place in this “new normal”.

Outlander is exquisite, from production to cast and crew. I was introduced to the series about three years ago by my son and daughter-in-law, who were watching the first season and as they say “…the rest is history!”, as I am completely enthralled!  I have not read the books by Diana Gabaldon but I do appreciate her incredible talent and how she has created such wonderful characters.

I have never been so addicted to a show, and belong to three fan Facebook groups. It is great to see how Outlander is such a worldwide phenomenon!  I love posting videos/photos and being able to add interesting information and insight. There is such a camaraderie and understanding how much we all love Outlander!  I enjoy watching behind-the-scenes videos and the interviews with the cast.

I have seen the show multiple times and now I have begun again watching season one while simultaneously listening to the Outlander podcast.  For Season One, Ron Moore watches each episode in real time while providing great insight on how an episode was written and filmed.  I am always amazed at the commitment and care that the producers and writers give to each episode.  They are completely invested in excellence and it is so evident!`

Valerie enjoys the official Outlander podcast and revisits the earlier episodes with Ron Moore

I’m in awe of Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe and it is really because of them that I am hooked on Outlander. The trust they have in each other and the way they can command a scene with just a look, they transport us and make us believe in Jamie and Claire in every single episode!   They are incredible actors and they also, from all I have seen of them outside the show, are wonderful people.  I cannot imagine any other actors in their roles as Jamie and Claire and I wish for them every success in their professional and private lives. I am so glad Sam and Cait are now producers of the show, which is wonderful for all of us, their audience!

Terry Dresbach deserves so much credit for her vision for the costumes of Outlander.  Her understanding of period costumes, the textures, colors, and presentation of realism is evident in every scene. She is an artistic costume genius!

It was sad to see Terry Dresbach leave the show

Trisha Biggar has continued the excellence  in season 5.  Jon Gary Steele is beyond incredible in his set designs.  The care and meticulous work he does is a feast for the eyes.

Costume designer Trisha Biggar supervises last minute adjustments to Bree’s wedding dress
Production designer Gary Steele puts the finishing touches to the streetscape for Claire and Franks Boston home

Bear McCreary and his music…what a genius!  I love the way he changes the theme song each season to fit where Jamie and Claire are…each one is beautiful and haunting!

Season 5 soundtrack is available now

Last month, my husband finally agreed to watch Outlander with me.  We both love history and travel so I knew he would enjoy it…and he did!  So often he would pause the show to look up some information about kings, history of Scotland, locations here in the US, etc.  There was one episode with a shot of Oxford, where Roger was teaching, and they showed a view of Roger looking out the window over Oxford. My husband had to rewind and pause it, go to his photos, and show me that he had taken a photo from the exact same balcony where the shot was taken!  Sometimes it took so long to get through the episode but I wasn’t about to complain…it was so fun watching him see the show for the first time!

We hope to visit Scotland one day.

(Editors note – hopefully Valerie and her husband will get to Scotland and see some of these wonderful, iconic Outlander locations)

Doune Castle was Castle Leoch in Outlander Season 1
Culross Palace was used for many scenes in Outlander

 

West Kirk Churchyard in Culross (famous for its lily-of-the-valley!) was used in Outlander Season 1

What can I say… I’m totally smitten!   The key to Outlander, to me, is the commitment to excellence from everyone involved, and the care they take for us, the audience.  Thank you for creating and bringing to life this amazing love story!

Andrée Poppleton

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