When it comes to Outlander’s Jamie Fraser, there are only two women in the entire world who would place his happiness and life above their own. That’s right, Claire Beauchamp and Jenny Murray have both proven they would move heaven and earth to ensure Jamie’s safety. It’s just a shame that they have no other common ground.
It’s no secret that Jenny and Claire aren’t exactly the best of friends. They butt heads every time they meet – whether it’s about how Lallybroch’s ran, Claire’s secrets, or Jamie’s well-being. If we are all being honest, the two women wouldn’t even talk to each other if it wasn’t for Jamie. Don’t believe it? Keep reading to discover the 10 reasons why Jenny and Claire aren’t real friends.
10 A Cold Reception
Typically, when your brother, who you haven’t seen in years, returns home with his wife, one thing you can do is act cordially towards the woman. After all, she’s probably feeling a little uncomfortable and nervous. Did Jenny do this? Nope. Instead, Jenny wasted no time in making her feel uncomfortable, calling Claire a “trollop.”
Although Claire was offended, she decided to let this slide and tried to bond with her sister-in-law. However, Jenny remained cold and aloof with Claire, despite the English woman trying to help her mend the strain with Jamie.
9 Claire Hasn’t Told Jenny She’s A Time-Traveler
Claire will never be as close to Jenny as she would like to be since she has kept a huge secret from her. When Claire and Jenny first met in season 1, Jenny believed Claire had the sight after Jamie told her about Claire’s ‘inklings.’ Ultimately, Jenny trusted and followed Claire’s advice because Jamie trusted her premonitions (“The Search”).
However, any progress made was undone by season 3 when Claire turned up 20 years later alive and well. Although Claire couldn’t exactly tell her the truth, Jenny’s feelings are as justified as she said she would have liked to have known she was alive. Jenny also adds that she knew Claire was hiding something from her (“First Wife”). It will be another 10 years after this before Claire tells the Murrays the truth.
8 Upheaving Jenny And Ian’s Life
While Jenny didn’t exactly give the warmest welcome to Claire, you couldn’t help but sympathize with the housewife when Claire and Jamie upheaved her life. Before Claire and Jamie arrived at Lallybroch, Jenny was content with her life. Everything was running smoothly on the estate and she was about to welcome her second child.
However, Jamie and Claire’s return threw a spanner in the works as they caused trouble for the Murrays. For instance, Jenny berates Claire for not consulting her on the McNabb situation, especially since she had an arrangement placed for the young boy (“Lallybroch”). She also scolds Claire for underestimating her compassionate nature. If Claire continued to judge her without getting to know her, there would be no point in creating a friendship.
7 Their Opposing Personalities
Everyone knows that Claire and Jenny haven’t always seen eye-to-eye but that’s mostly because they have opposing personalities. Where Claire is calm and collective, Jenny is stubborn and fiery. Where Claire is compassionate and considerate, Jenny is a lot more selfish.
The only thing they have in common is the unconditional love they had for Jamie – and even then they differ on what is best for him. An example of this can be seen in “First Wife,” where fans saw the sisters come to blows when Jenny accused Claire of making Jamie unhappy and not being good enough for her brother.
6 A Bit Of Competition
One reason why Claire and Jenny could never be real friends is that they are also rivals. Whether it’s in the books or on the television show, you can’t help but feel an underlying tension between Jenny and Claire whenever they meet.
The first time fans saw it was when Claire usurped Jenny’s role as the Lady of Lallybroch. Fans have also seen the women compete over Jamie, with Jenny becoming jealous that she wasn’t the only woman in her brother’s life anymore. Obviously, the women are going to come to blows since Claire is basically replacing Jenny in every aspect – which has caused an underlying resentment.
5 The Laoghaire Incident
Another reason why Jenny and Claire would never be real friends is the fact that Jenny holds no loyalty to Claire. While Jenny was unaware of Laoghaire’s role in Claire’s witch trial in the books, in the show it was a different matter altogether. As soon as Jamie came to rescue Claire, she told him everything – including how Laoghaire orchestrated it all.
Since Jamie and Jenny have a close bond, Jamie likely told her about what happened to Claire during the witch trials. If this is true, then Jenny had disrespected Claire by encouraging Jamie to marry Laoghaire. Jenny even admitted she saw Claire’s ghost at the wedding and yet did nothing to stop it. If anything, her loyalties would always lie with Jamie.
4 The Laoghaire Incident 2.0
Not only did Jenny encourage the match between Jamie and Laoghaire but she also decided to stir the pot between Claire and Jamie when she told Laoghaire of her brother’s return. Keeping with the episode “First Wife,” Claire was taken aback to find Jamie had become step-father to Laoghaire’s children.
As Claire was coming to terms with the new information, she soon finds that Jenny had told Laoghaire of their return. Ian then accuses his wife of stirring up trouble because of her feud Claire. Ultimately, he is proven right as Laoghaire ends up shooting Jamie in the arm after trying to kill Claire. Although it was her fault, Jenny doesn’t apologize for her part in it all.
3 Book Jenny’s Reaction To Claire’s Return
While Jenny and Claire ended up clearing the air after Jamie was shot on the show, this was different in the books. After Laoghaire shot Jamie in Voyager, Claire admits that Jenny is still holding a grudge against her and she could tell by one reason alone. The soaps.
When Claire is tending to Jamie’s wound, she finds that Jenny had left a soap for her to use. She notices Jenny has selected a scented soap, traditionally one she reserves only for guests and not her family. This leads Claire to believe Jenny is making a statement against, which suggests another reason why the pair can’t be real friends.
2 Keeping Bree’s Identity A Secret
While Jenny is shown to have a strong bond with Bree in the books, this is also completely different in the show. Due to a scheduling conflict, Donnelly couldn’t be part of season 4, meaning Jenny has yet to meet Brianna. However, the writers implied an underlying issue would be brewing in Claire and Jenny’s friendship, considering the housewife didn’t know she had a niece.
While Ian was delighted to meet Brianna in “Down the Rabbit Hole,” he implies that he and Jenny didn’t even know she existed. Considering Jenny and Claire had a heart-to-heart before the surgeon left, Jenny’s not going to appreciate that Claire didn’t tell her she had a niece. If Claire was keeping secrets this important then the couldn’t be real friends.
1 Calling Claire Heartless
While Jenny hasn’t had a lot of scenes in the show, she has proven to have a central role in the novel. In An Echo in the Bone, Jenny makes another reappearance after Jamie and Claire return home with Young Ian. Here, they were surprised to find Ian on his death bed after contracting consumption at Tolbooth.
While they are also there, Claire decides to tell the Murrays the truth about her origins. However, due to Jenny’s skeptical nature, the older Fraser still believes Claire to be a witch and begs her to heal Ian. When Claire tells her she couldn’t, Jenny turns frosty and calls Claire heartless. The fact that Jenny still holds disbelief about Claire proves there is a lack of trust between them, which means they can’t be true friends.
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About The AuthorA writer, reader and tv fanatic, Kayleigh enjoys reading movie news and your film reviews. She has attained an Undergraduate degree in Creative Writing and is also the creator of the film and television blog ‘The Critics’ Corner’.
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