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Podcast Interviews with Toni Graphia & Mike Barker


Outlander Podcast interviewed Toni Graphia, the writer of episodes 1x05, 1x11, & 1x13. Outlander Cast interviewed Mike Barker, director of episodes 1x11 and 1x12. I suffer through Blake's voice on Outlander Cast for all of you.

Summaries below.


Toni Interview

  • It takes the writers 2-3 weeks to break up the book.

  • The writers try to be diplomatic in splitting up an ep and those who didn't get their first choices in Season 1 got first dibs on the season 2 eps.

  • The writers decide the structure of each episode as a group, then break out to write individually. Then they come back together to edit. Ron does the final polish after that.

  • She thinks it's nice having a small group of writers as she's worked on other shows where there are too many voices in the room.

  • She's already written two scripts for season 2, for episodes 4 and 7.

  • Ira is great at writing BJR, Matt does a great job with Murtagh and Jamie's voices, Anne is great at the romance, Toni loves to write for Geillis and do emotional scenes that make people cry.

  • She says Ron is great at writing 1940's scenes and for Frank (OP: I cannot tell if this a compliment). It was Ron's choice to play up the love triangle.

  • Rent fell into Toni's lap. It wasn't one of her first choices at all. The other writers suggested she view the episode as the story of a girl going camping with all her brothers.

  • Inspiration: She Tivos all shows related to Scotland and likes to watch those before writing. She also drinks scotch and listens to Scottish music while writing.

  • Each writer is in Scotland once per season to supervise the adaptation of one of their episodes and one of someone else's.

  • Woolwaulking is one of Toni's favorite scenes.

  • Why Geillis gave herself up for Claire, in Toni's opinion: 1.) she knows she's doomed, 2.) she is moved by Claire's choice not to save herself at Geillis' expense, 3.) Geillis was upset that Claire hadn't come back in time for a reason. But when Jamie shows up she realizes Claire has come to 1743 for love.

  • Geillis sees it as a sort of personal patriotism to give herself up for Claire. She gave her life for love of her country and love for a friend who herself has found love. She is first and foremost a drama queen and gets to go out in a blaze of glory.

  • Toni was inspired by Homeland when writing The Devil's Mark, namely the episode Q&A. She enjoyed scenes between Jamie and Claire and Geillis and Claire, and liked the idea of so many scenes taking place between just two characters. (OP: I'm just guessing, but it sounds like she originally intended for most of the episode to consist of these types of scenes.)

  • Why does Jamie stay with MacQuarrie instead of going home? He's an army man and would never leave a man behind.

  • Maybe the funniest part of the podcast: She BS'd her way through her interview with Ron for her job on Outlander. She hadn't read the book and just nodded a lot.

  • She's now read the first two books.

  • Explanation for Jenny's reaction to the cheek kiss is simple: Jenny's just not a lovey dovey person.

  • Laura often surprises Toni with her acting choices. She's not one of those people who acts the scene exactly as Toni imagines while writing, but she always manages to make her scenes interesting and wonderful.

Mike Barker Interview

  • In TV, actors are always so used to their characters, and know them better than a director ever could. His method of directing is to ask actors provocative questions that will allow them to step out of their comfort zone.

  • His hardest, most agonizing scene on Outlander: Claire's confession that she's from the future. He was proud of how it turned out, and Sam and Cait's performances.

  • One thing he butted heads with Ron on a bit was the choice to have Geillis carried out of the courtroom. Ron thought it would seem like crowdsurfing at a concert.

  • He thinks that Father Bain was 100% trying to sink Claire with his courtroom dramatics.

  • He filmed Claire going through the stones in two different ways, from her POV and from more of a third person POV.

  • He's become a big Laura Donnelly fan and raved about her acting a bit.

  • He was the one who was tasked with asking Tobias to do full frontal.

  • On Tobias's penis: "Trust me, it's not that little."

  • Sam lost his modesty pouch while filming the scene at the mill. It floated off and no one was able to catch it. He had to do 15 more takes without it, much to Cait's amusement.

  • He's Team Jamie. Sam's handsomeness is dangerous.

Tags: 1x05, 1x10, 1x11, 1x12, 1x13, mike barker, podcast, toni graphia
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