Happy birthday, Nell Hudson: The one good trait in Laoghaire (yes, there’s one!)

Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ /

Happy birthday, Nell Hudson!

I know what you’re going to tell me! All Outlander fans hate Laoghaire with a passion. There’s no way she can have a good trait. Well, to celebrate Nell Hudson’s 30th birthday, that’s exactly what I’m going to delve into.

You see, there is one good thing for Laoghaire. It’s all about her children.

Laoghaire is the mother of Marsali and Joanie, two young ladies that are nothing like their vindictive, obsessive mother. While Marsali did initially gain Laoghaire’s hatred for Claire, Marsali soon learned the truth. That doesn’t stop her from loving her mother, but it also means she loves Claire at the same time.

But what does Laoghaire have to do with this? How does Laoghaire have a good trait?

Laoghaire is protective of her daughters

One thing we got to see during Outlander Season 4, Episode 7 was Laoghaire’s kind streak. It’s there around the right people.

She’s a kind mother to Joanie, just wanting the best for her daughter. She misses Marsali so much, and she wants to see her grandchildren. Laoghaire is vindictive, but that doesn’t stop her from being a good mother.

Remember that this is a time when women were viewed as property. The only way they would be able to survive on their own is if they came from money and had that money in their own name in some way. It may have been through having a lucky father (who had no sons) or being a widowed of a wealthy man.

Women needed the support of others. Laoghaire wanted to make sure her daughters were provided for. And while she went about it in the wrong way with Jamie, her heart was in the right place for her daughters.

I can honestly say I don’t know what I’d be like living in that time with two daughters.

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She was kind to strangers

Outlander Season 4, Episode 7 also gave us a look at the kindness Laoghaire could offer. We even saw a little of that in Outlander Season 1 when Claire first appeared at Castle Leoch. Laoghaire was initially nice to Claire until she felt threatened.

In “Down the Rabbit Hole,” Laoghaire takes Brianna in. She has no idea who Brianna is or who she is related to. At first, Laoghaire just sees this female traveler on her own and in danger.

We get a chance to see the goodness that Laoghaire does have. If we’d only met her in this episode and had no idea what she had done to Claire and Jamie, there’s a chance we’d have liked her at first. Of course, she ruined it when she learned who Brianna was.

I have to give it to Nell Hudson. She portrays the two sides to Laoghaire so brilliantly. She switches between the kindness and the viciousness so quickly. It’s a skill not many actresses will have.

And while none of this makes up for what she has done (although I will say I have a little bit of sympathy for her when she was 16, but not when she’s older), there is one good trait there.

Next. Turning the tables on the Laoghaire hate. dark

Happy birthday, Nell Hudson!