Terry Dresbach

Outlander Costume Designer

Reply To: Dragonfly in Amber: Book Discussion and Show Expectations

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#8192
toriamae
Participant

I’m about a million months late for this (and to the forums….the whole forum thing makes me happy though as I am incapable of expressing myself intelligently in 140 characters.)

I find Brianna a fascinating character and after reading how many of y’all aren’t so keen on her, I realized how much of it was inference based on my mother’s tales of growing up tall and at the same age. So, here’s what I infer:

1. Brianna was teased a lot as a kid. I don’t know any woman who’s 6′ or taller who isn’t. My mother is that height and the same age as Bree and tells stories of having her clothes ruined (one kid in her class wrote “jolly green giant” on the back of an outfit her mother had just made!)

2. Which parent was “there for her” when that happened? Frank. Not Claire. When she came home from school crying because she was teased, he was the one she talked to. And he didn’t tell Claire. He would have LOVED that her career choice was taking her out of the loop on Bree’s life. I just think he’s a bit petty like that.

3. Bree talks about all the stuff she did with Frank growing up. So, even on weekends, which parent was she hanging out with? Not the one who taught Sex Ed at her school, that’s for sure.

And while I didn’t grow up in that day and age, I can very easily imagine in that time that Bree would have resented her mother for working, for not “being there” and because her career choices contributed to her being picked on in school.

Now, Bree grows up. And kids who are picked on in school generally are either broken by it or cop an attitude because of it.

All of that to say, I never considered Bree any more than a response to her environment.

And that’s in part why I am so eager to see who plays her.

Casting her shorter/smaller than she was written in the books changes the character to my view.

Also, accentuating this stuff would show a side of Frank and Claire that is not in the book (I don’t know if DG realized when she wrote this how much tall girls are picked on! She seemed to exoticize the height thing.) But my analysis of the books at least is that her height, and the likely realistic ramifications explains who she is pretty well. Even though most of this stuff would come out in Voyager, the casting either sets the stage for it or doesn’t.