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Complete Guide to Starz Channel's OUTLANDER Season 1 Cast Interviews, Episodes, Video, Kilts & More!

Maj Canton - February 11, 2016


Season 2 Premiere Of




The OUTLANDER series, based on the best-selling books by Diana Gabaldon, spans the genres of romance, science fiction, history, and adventure in one epic tale. It follows the story of Claire Randall, a married combat nurse from 1945, who is mysteriously swept back in time to 1743. Upon her arrival, she is thrown into an unknown world where her freedom -- and her life -- are threatened. But when she is forced to marry Jamie Fraser, a chivalrous and romantic young Scottish warrior, a passionate relationship is ignited. Now, Claire's heart is torn between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.






On Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Starz released new key art for the highly-anticipated second installment of the Golden Globe®-nominated STARZ Original series OUTLANDER with the tagline, “The Etiquette of War.” Adapted from Diana Gabaldon’s international best-selling books and executive produced by Ronald D. Moore, the second installment of OUTLANDER returns on Saturday, April 9th at 9pm ET/PT.


The world of OUTLANDER is incredibly different from book one and the new key art celebrates those differences. Whereas the first installment’s art was set on a hillside of the rugged Scottish highlands, this new art invites us in to the opulence and intrigue of 18th century Parisian society.
The key art depicts Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan) surrounded by (left to right) Mary Hawkins (Rosie Day); King Louis XV (Lionel Lingelser); Louise de Rohan (Claire Sermonne); Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix); Le Comte St Germain (Stanley Weber) and Prince Charles Stuart (Andrew Gower). Claire and Jamie are attempting to change history, by stopping the battle of Culloden, through flattery, manipulation and politics. The Frasers are fighting this war – not on the battlefield – but in the courts of King Louis. While the original image was about Claire and Jamie being thrown together, this new art shows them united in their mission, fighting for their future together and the fate of Scotland itself.
The key art was shot by photographer Jason Bell.


The second installment will be 13 episodes and is based upon the second of eight books in Diana Gabaldon's international best-selling Outlander series, entitled "Dragonfly in Amber." Instead of swords and guns, Claire and Jamie are armed with political savvy and the finest 1700s Parisian fashion as they embark on their new mission -- infiltrating the French aristocracy and rewriting history. Book Two of OUTLANDER begins as Claire and Jamie arrive in France, hell-bent on infiltrating the Jacobite rebellion led by Prince Charles Stuart, and stopping the battle of Culloden. With the help of his cousin Jared, a local wine merchant, Jamie and Claire are thrown into the lavish world of French society, where intrigue and parties are abundant, but political gain proves far less fruitful. Altering the course of history presents challenges that begin to weigh on the very fabric of their relationship. However, armed with the knowledge of what lies ahead, Claire and Jamie must race to prevent a doomed Highland uprising and the extinction of Scottish life as they know it.


Starz also released a first look at their teaser art, shot on location in Scotland by photographer Jason Bell, featuring OUTLANDER couple Claire and Jamie on the steps of Versailles. The new image gives viewers a taste of what's to come in this next chapter -- old world lavishness mixed with a sense of new world urgency.



Starz announced it has cast actress Sophie Skelton (@skeltonsophie) as Brianna (Bree), Claire and Jamie's daughter. "Strong-minded and intelligent beyond her years (traits inherited from both her mother and father), Brianna has a distinctly scholastic mind-set and a healthy dose of Fraser stubbornness."




Earlier, "Outlander: Original Television Soundtrack, Vol. 2" was released on CD and digital formats on September 25, 2015.  The soundtrack contains original music and period-accurate song adaptations by McCreary from across season one of the Outlander television series, with a focus on the last eight episodes.  In response to demand from fans, the album also includes "Wool Waulking Songs" – a pair of traditional folk songs performed on camera, a cappella, by Outlander cast members.  In addition, the album features a new folk recording by renowned Gaelic singer Gillebrìde MacMillan. 

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Starz announced they cast Dominique Piñon as Master Raymond, a small kindly apothecary, who is a mysterious healer with a great deal of knowledge regarding secret matters, both political and occult. Though generally viewed with suspicion by his contemporaries, Master Raymond forms a special bond with Claire. The network also released this photo of Piñon:


The second half of Season 1 began on Saturday, April 4, 2015 at 9pm ET/PT on Starz with eight new episodes, completing the 16-episode first season.

When we left Claire, she was in the clutches of Black Jack Randall again, having been captured by the redcoats as she made a daring attempt to reach the stones at Craigh Na Dun, and hopefully return to her life in the 20th century with her beloved husband, Frank. According to Moore, this is where things get even more interesting. "At the end of the first half of the season, we're caught between Frank and Jamie. There's that moment at the end of the wedding episode where she looks at the two rings on her fingers and realizes that she's trapped, caught between two men, and wonders what she's going do? But when she had an opportunity to leave, she takes it, which says a lot about where she is in her relationship with Jamie. In the second half of the season, as she comes to terms with being in the 18th century, she has to figure out, what does it mean to be married to Jamie Fraser? How will that affect her?

"In the first half of the season, her goal was clear: get back to the stones and go home. In the remaining episodes, it's unclear. She's not sure what she wants to do anymore, and she's groping for an answer throughout the second half."

An Uncomfortable Justice

But first Claire needs to deal with the consequences of her decision to make a run for it. "When Claire disobeys Jamie and breaks her promise to stay in the glen, it causes a huge tumult. She put all these men's lives in danger, and now she has to face the aftermath of that," Moore explains. Jamie's upbringing taught him that this kind of transgression must be addressed by means of physical punishment, which might be traditional among his Highland clan, but does not sit well with his new bride – or with many readers of Gaboldon's series.

Caitriona Balfe, who plays Claire, admits it took some time to come to terms with this controversial plot twist. "It's tough as a modern woman to determine how you feel about it," Balfe says. "On one hand you can rationalize that for a man of that time it was an acceptable form of justice. But then your mind immediately screams, ‘there is never an acceptable form of justice that involved beating.' And that's how Claire feels. She finds it very hard to wrap her mind around what the man that she's fallen in love with is about to do. There's so much disbelief. And so Claire fights back and gives as good as she gets for as long as she can. And that's something that I had a very strong idea about: As Claire, I'm not going to stop fighting. Claire is never a victim, and she never gives up. She never lies down and takes it." 

Love Forces a Person to Choose

The early episodes focused on Claire's self-preservation as she came to terms with her strange situation – falling under the protection of the MacKenzies and her role as a healer to the Clan, adjusting to the status and expectations of women in the 18th century and missing Frank and her life in the 1940s. Not to mention her run-ins with the cruel "Black Jack" Randall, the prominent British Army Captain stationed in the Highlands, who is Frank Randall's ancestor and bears a striking resemblance to his great-great-great-great grandson. And while the remaining episodes continue to tell the story of the nascent Jacobite rebellion against the British crown, and delve into superstition and Clan politics, Moore says the main focus is on how Claire and Jamie figure out what married life is going to be like for them. "They've had a unique relationship because when they got married, it wasn't even their idea," Moore explains. "It was forced upon them suddenly. And then they had their long wedding night where they got to know each other for the first time and developed feelings for one another. They are still trying to find their roles as a couple."

"After Jamie punishes her, Claire has to become very honest with herself and honest with him," Balfe says. "And he does the same. It's the beginning of them laying down the geography of their hearts. They have this incredible row, and she says to him, look, if I'm going to stay here, and if I'm going to be your wife, than this is who I am. And this is what you need to know. And this is what I'll accept and not. And he does the same. It was important that even though she may not have been able to accept what he did, she had to come to an understanding of his reasons for it, and that allows her to find a way to forgive him. And that's when they really get to know each other and truly marry each other. They give each other their bond, not under the duress of Dougal's plan or for any political reasons, but because they've decided that they love each other and they want to do it. And we explore what it means for the two of them to stay together, rather than get together."

Coming Home

One glance at the opening credits and you realize that OUTLANDER is a stunning visual tribute to the beauty of Scotland, and establishing those iconic images has been a priority for the entire production team. But the bulk of that work falls on the location and art departments, who are committed to bringing to life the world fans have imagined for years. And there is no setting that has captured fans' hearts more than Lallybroch, Jamie Fraser's ancestral home, and the place he brings Claire to commence their life as husband and wife.

"Claire has known how important Lallybroch is to Jamie for such a long time," says Balfe. "He always had this dream of bringing her home as the lady of Lallybroch, but Claire has a lot of apprehension about this: In the 1940s, the idea that she was going to become a housewife was sort of terrifying to her. In a strange way, going back to the 1740s helps her find her purpose, being useful as a healer full time. During the war, life was on the edge and exciting, and now she finds herself in the same position. It's a confusing time, but Claire slowly realizes that this is the first time she's really had a proper home since she was a very small girl And there's a great moment where she just kind of starts to settle in and realize that, oh, maybe this is actually what I've wanted all along. And then very quickly that rug is torn from under her feet again."

A Lasting Bond

OUTLANDER is also introducing some new characters, from the flamboyant Duke of Sandringham, played by Simon Callow, to the duplicitous members of the Black Watch, which Moore describes as "the Scottish version of the Mafia – they go around and extort people for protection money, but sometimes help them out as well." Two characters close to Jamie's heart also have prominent roles in several episodes – his sister Jenny, who has been running Lallybroch in his absence and her husband Ian Murray (played by Steven Cree). "Ian is Jamie's best friend going a long way back," Sam Heughan, who plays Jamie Fraser, explains. "They fought together in France, where Ian lost his leg. When Jamie sees him again, Ian is a changed man – he can no longer live the life that he wants to live, as a mercenary, a fighter, a hired arm. He's a settled man. He's a grownup. And that's what Jamie faces as well – he has to grow up. He can't always live this life of adventure."

And Jenny, who made an appearance in episode 102 (when Captain Randall first encountered Jamie, and whipped him at Lallybroch) is a force of nature brought to life by Irish actress Laura Donnelly. "It's wonderful to be stuck in between these two strong characters," says Heughan. "Jenny doesn't back down and Jamie certainly doesn't back down. And there's a real standoff between the two of them, and it can be quite fiery. And for once, Claire is the mediator, not the one that's in the midst of the fight. It was really nice to see another side of Jamie, not just the husband or the young warrior; he's a brother. And he feels responsible for what happened to his sister, and he guilty that he's left her to fend for herself." 

But it's the partnership of Claire and Jenny that is truly formidable, once they get past their differences; in fact EP Maril Davis calls them the "'Thelma and Louise' of the 18th century. They're independent and they go after what they want, which was not something that was expected of a woman at that time."

Davis believes the reason the OUTLANDER books and now the series resonate with so many women is that the protagonist is such a strong female character. "Women want to be Claire. There's a sense of fantasy fulfillment in how she was able to step right into the action as a healer when she arrived in this strange world."

"Claire's strong nature and the fact that she won't back down are the reasons she's survived and can succeed in this world," Davis says. "When you think of all the people she goes up against – Colum, Dougal, Murtagh, Black Jack – she stands up to all of them. She has such a strong sense of self, and it's also why her relationship with Jamie works – traditionally, he would be used to a woman staying behind at home, but because Claire insists on going where he goes, and insists on being an equal partner, they face tremendous challenges and adversaries together."

Geillis Duncan is another strong woman who is a central character in these episodes and in Claire's new life. While Geillis, played by Lotte Verbeek, is Claire's first friend when she arrives in the 18th century, she quickly realizes that she can't really trust the mysterious woman. "Even though she's dying to confide in someone, she's smart enough to know that she has to keep her cards close to the vest," says Davis. "And when the women are charged with witchcraft, Claire is outraged because she can't abide by the injustice of it all. While she knows that her friend Geillis has done a few things that might convince people she is a witch in this time period, Claire expects a fair trial. And she's not confident that they'll get a fair trial even though Claire knows she's innocent."

The Battle for Jamie's Soul

The first season, like Gabaldon's first book, ends with a devastating confrontation, when Black Jack Randall's obsession with Jamie Fraser reaches a horrifying conclusion. "Jack has been fascinated with this young Highlander for quite some time" Moore explains. "And in the second half of the season, he finally finds a resolution to that. He's also been interested in Claire – he knows that she has some kind of secret, and he's equally determined to get to the bottom of that. He gets to deal with both Claire and Jamie in a very graphic and intimate way, to get his information from both of them."


We've assembled a complete guide to OUTLANDER with character descriptions, episode guide, behind-the-scenes and making-of facts, links to more detailed information, video trailer, and more.

Q&A Interviews with OUTLANDER Cast, Creator & Executive Producers


Character Descriptions


CLAIRE RANDALL (Caitriona Balfe)


Claire is a modern woman of 1945, a strong-willed and quick-witted former British Army nurse who served on the frontlines in WWII.  While on a second honeymoon in Scotland with her husband Frank, she is mysteriously swept back in time to the year 1743.  Upon her arrival, she is immediately thrown into an unknown world where her freedom and her life are threatened. When she is forced to marry Jamie Fraser, a chivalrous and romantic young Scottish warrior, a passionate affair is ignited that tears Claire's heart between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.




Armed with sheer grit and enduring strength, Jamie is a strapping young Scottish Highlander with a complicated past and a disarming sense of humor. When Claire Randall, a married combat nurse from 1945, is mysteriously swept back in time to 1743, Jamie is forced to marry her to save her life. Intelligent, principled and, by 18th century standards, educated and worldly, Jamie has a tenderness and compassion that stand out in contrast to his contemporaries. A natural leader of men, he has no political ambitions or desire for battlefield glories. Instead, he wishes to remove the price on his head and return to his family's ancestral farm.


FRANK RANDALL (Tobias Menzies)


Claire's beloved husband Frank is an intellectual and an academic. He served in British Intelligence section MI6 during the war, and was responsible for sending men on dangerous missions, some of whom never returned.  With the war now over, he's looking forward to a new career as a historian at Oxford when his wife mysteriously disappears in the Highlands.




A Captain in the English Army back in 1743, Jack has been posted in Scotland during a time when rebellion is in the air. As an officer in an occupying army, he's seen and done terrible things in the undeclared war in the Highlands.  Jack is capable of monstrous acts, which he justifies to himself as being necessary to enforce British rule. He's also a sadist who finds joy in the torment of others – a secret side of himself that he loathes, but cannot escape. Randall has an unhealthy obsession with Jamie, who manages to run afoul of him more than once during the series – a dark, twisted game of cat and mouse.




A skilled and experienced warrior, Dougal is the War Chieftain of Clan MacKenzie. His older brother Colum is the ruling Laird, but Dougal is his loyal right hand and the true muscle.  He is courageous on the battlefield and is feared by many; the kind of man who will get what he wants, no matter what (or who) stands in his way. Though an artful tactician, he sometimes lets his temper and impetuous nature get the better of him. Unlike his brother, Dougal secretly supports the rebel Jacobite cause against the British, and works to raise funds to restore a Scottish King.




The Laird of the MacKenzie clan, Colum is Jamie's maternal uncle and brother to Dougal.  Colum suffers from what is known in the 20th century as Toulouse-Lautrec Syndrome, a degenerative disease that renders his legs immobile at times, and fills his days with a great amount of pain. Unable to rule by brawn, he must rely on cunning and intellect to lead his clan. Not surprisingly, there is a quiet sadness about him, as he must depend on his brother Dougal to be his enforcer. But above all, he is insightful and stern; a strong leader who secretly fears for the future of his clan and its leadership.


GEILLIS DUNCAN (Lotte Verbeek)


The wife of the procurator fiscal and a good friend to Claire, Geillis' advanced knowledge of herbs and plants cause many to believe she is a witch. Geillis is a master manipulator, able to get her husband - among others - to bend to her will.  She is also smart, sexual, and mysterious - the kind of character you know you can't trust, yet who continues to draw you in.




Mysterious and dark, like a vulture lurking in the background, Murtagh dutifully watches over his godson Jamie. Although a reserved man, he's very loyal, and lives his life by a strict code. And he's more than happy to let his reputation, and if need be, his fists do the talking. Like his fellow clansmen, he is skeptical of Claire at first. But he eventually warms to her because, as always, he'll do whatever is best for young Jamie.




A loyal member of Clan MacKenzie; Jamie's second cousin. Rupert is an angler who is always looking for opportunities - he just can't stand to pass up a good raid. He's also known as a bit of a sex fiend. Rupert is Dougal's right hand man; Dougal has power and Rupert wishes he did as well. Rupert is happy to cast a watchful eye over Claire and report back to Dougal, but at the same time it's nothing personal; Claire is just a means to an end for him, a way to win points with Dougal.


ANGUS MHOR (Stephen Walters)


Another member of Clan MacKenzie, Angus is a hard drinker who's always looking for a fight. Although less verbal than Rupert, Angus has no problem speaking up when needed, especially if it's about "those damn English!" His hatred for the Brits is palpable, and as far as he's concerned Claire can go right back where she came from – dead or alive. Rarely seen without a bottle in his hand, Angus is nonetheless an extremely skilled fighter, and a loyal clansman, making him an asset to both Colum and Dougal.


NED GOWAN (Bill Paterson)


A quirky lawyer from Edinburgh with a taste for adventure. Ned has worked for clan MacKenzie for years, beginning with Dougal and Colum's father, then playing legal aid to Colum when he took over as clan Laird. At first Claire welcomes this chatty addition, glad to have someone to talk to. But it quickly becomes evident that Ned is subtly trying to poke holes in Claire's story. Charming and cunning at the same time, this barrister is affable enough, but remains loyal to his clan.


WILLIE (Finn Den Hertog)


Young and skittish, Willie is a member of our Highlander group who's always trying to prove himself. Loyal and always with the best of intentions – if Dougal's the alpha wolf, Willie's the omega and bottom of the hierarchy.




Jamie's older sister, she shares many of the same strong characteristics of her brother. Stubborn and quick-tempered, Jenny is also smart, experienced, and skilled, running Lallybroch (the Fraser ancestral home) when Jamie is away. Jenny is married to Ian Murray, they have one child (Wee Jamie) and a second child on the way.


IAN MURRAY (Steven Cree)


Jenny's husband and Jamie's best friend since childhood. Ian lost part of his leg during combat in France but that hasn't held him back in his life. He is very close to his wife and best friend and welcomes Claire into the family.




A young girl of 16 who is attracted to Jamie, Laoghaire is blonde and fair, with the kind of natural, girl-next-door beauty that could get you in trouble. At first she seems shy, harmless, mousey even, but eventually we see her vengeful side.


MRS. FITZGIBBONS (Annette Badland)


This quick-witted woman is the glue that holds Castle Leoch together. Dry, sarcastic, and never one to hold her tongue, Mrs. Fitz is the first one up in the morning and the last one to go to bed at night – her work is never done.




This amateur historian and genealogist is Frank's advisor in 1945. He is also the vicar of an Inverness parish, and plays an important role in the lives of both Claire and Frank.


MRS. GRAHAM (Tracey Wilkinson)


Reverend Wakefield's druid housekeeper. A dramatic woman with an eye for the unknown, including reading tea leaves. She predicts Claire's "love of two men."


MRS. BAIRD (Kathryn Howden)


Seen in 1945, this easy-going woman is the owner/manager of the bed and breakfast Frank and Claire stay at after the war. She is nosy to a fault, making everything her business, but she is also extremely kind and welcoming to both Claire and Frank.




This squat, powerful man is the "Master of Horse" at Castle Leoch. A bit gruff, and definitely a man's man, Alec shows Jamie the lay of the land at Castle Leoch's stables.




Letitia is the wife of Clan MacKenzie's Laird Colum MacKenzie, and mother to Hamish. As the spouse of the most powerful member of the clan, Letitia plays the role of both matriarch and caring mother. A strong woman in her own right – the type of powerful ally Claire, or anyone, would love to have.


HAMISH MACKENZIE (Roderick Gilkison)


Handsome with red hair, Hamish is the son and heir to Laird Colum MacKenzie; although rumors abound that he may actually be another man's son. He is rambunctious and spirited, with a child's understanding of the power Colum has – power that one day could very well be his.




The Duke is about as opulent and flamboyant as they come in the 18th century. With a propensity for all things beautiful, the Duke rarely hears the word no.  We learn, like many men of power during this time, he has his hands in a few different cookie jars.


FATHER BAIN (Tim McInnerny)


This cranky, set-in-his-ways priest from Cranesmuir accuses Claire of witchcraft. He appears hell-bent on sending Claire, and her "evil ways" packing.




Claire's "Uncle Lamb"; an archeologist who raised Claire in various locations around the world. He was a large influence in Claire's life, shaping her into a strong, independent, competent woman from a young age.

Episode Guide

If you want to know nothing about the episodes at all, skip this section. Provided by Starz, this episode guide includes general episode descriptions and specific plot details.


Episode #1: "Sassenach"
Debut: SATURDAY, AUGUST 9 (9-10pm ET/PT)
While on her honeymoon, WWII combat nurse Claire Randall is mysteriously transported back to 1743 Scotland, where she is kidnapped by a group of Highlanders - and meets an injured young man named Jamie.

Episode #2: "Castle Leoch"
Debut: SATURDAY, AUGUST 16 (9-10pm)
Claire is taken to meet the Laird. As suspicions about her grow, Claire befriends the mysterious Geillis Duncan. When the clan discovers her medical skills, Claire goes from guest to prisoner.

Episode #3: "The Way Out"
Debut: SATURDAY, AUGUST 23 (9-10pm)
Claire decides to use her medical skills to aid her escape from Castle Leoch - with Jamie's help, she tends to an ill child. During an evening's entertainment, a story gives Claire hope for her freedom.

Episode #4: "The Gathering"
Debut: SATURDAY, AUGUST 30 (9-10pm)
As the Castle prepares for The Gathering, Claire plots her escape. But after a dangerous encounter with a drunken Dougal and an unexpected run-in with Jamie, her plans are dashed.

Episode #5: "Rent"
Debut: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 6 (9-10pm)
Claire joins the MacKenzie rent-collecting trip. To her horror, Dougal uses Jamie's scars to gain sympathy for the Jacobite cause. Claire recalls that a defining moment in Scottish history is fast approaching.

Episode #6: "The Garrison Commander"
Debut: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 13 (9-10pm)
Claire's unexpected meeting with a British general turns tense when Captain Jack Randall arrives. Claire finds herself alone with Randall - a dangerous man determined to uncover her secrets.

Episode #7: "The Wedding"
Debut: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 20 (9-10pm)
Claire and Jamie are thrown together in marriage, but as their emotional and physical relationship unfolds, deeper feelings arise. Claire is ultimately torn between two men in two very different times.

Episode #8: "Both Sides Now" (mid-season finale)
Debut: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 27 (9-10pm)
Frank desperately searches for his missing wife, while Claire tries to come to terms with her new marriage. Claire is faced with an emotional quandary as a life-altering opportunity presents itself.

Episode #9: "The Reckoning" (mid-season premiere)
Debut: SATURDAY, APRIL 4 (9-10pm)
Jamie and the Highlanders rescue Claire from Black Jack Randall. Back at the castle, politics threaten to tear Clan MacKenzie apart and Jamie's scorned lover, Laoghaire, attempts to win him back.

Episode #10: "By the Pricking of My Thumbs"
Debut: SATURDAY, APRIL 11 (9-10pm)
Jamie hopes the newly arrived Duke of Sandringham will help lift the price from his head, while Claire attempts to save an abandoned child.

Episode #11: "The Devil's Mark"
Debut: SATURDAY, APRIL 18 (9-10pm)
The crowds have gathered around the thieves hole, and it is time for the accused to take the stand. Claire and Geillis have been arrested for witchcraft and due in court. Jamie manages to rescue Claire, but not before she discovers a secret about Geillis's past. Tweet using #OutlanderTrial

Episode #12: "Lallybroch"
Debut: SATURDAY, APRIL 25 (9-10pm)
Reunited, Claire and Jamie make their way to Lallybroch – Jamie's family home. Reality quickly sets in, and old wounds are reopened between Jamie and his sister, Jenny.

Episode #13: "The Watch"
Debut: SATURDAY, MAY 2 (9-10pm)
Jamie finds himself between a rock and a hard place when a redcoat deserter from his past resurfaces. Claire tends to a laboring Jenny while Jamie and Ian join The Watch on an ambush, resulting in devastating consequences.

Episode #14: "The Search"
Debut: SATURDAY, MAY 9 (9-10pm)
Claire and Jenny set out to rescue Jamie from his redcoat captors. When Murtagh joins up, Jenny returns home to her family while Claire and the Highlander employ unorthodox tactics to send word to Jamie. When word finally arrives, the news is not what anyone had hoped for.

Episode #15: "Wentworth Prison"
Debut: SATURDAY, MAY 16 (9-10pm)
Jamie awaits his death sentence at Wentworth Prison, while Claire and the Highlanders desperately search for a rescue plan.

Episode #16: "To Ransom a Man¹s Soul"
Debut: SATURDAY, MAY 30 (9-10pm)
A plan is put in place to attempt to free Jamie from Wentworth Prison where he is once again being held by his tormentor, Black Jack Randall.





The triangle between Claire, Frank and Jamie is the center of the drama, but there is another romance developing on screen. EP Ronald D. Moore describes "Outlander" – both the books and the television series – as a love letter to Scotland. "That's why it was so important to shoot it here. This country has a particular quality to it. There is a particular quality to the light, the grass, even the trees. The landscape itself is a character in the show." Shooting in Scotland presented its own set of logistical and production challenges. To accommodate a production of this scale, it was necessary to convert an unused electronics factory into a state-of-the-art studio complex. Located in Cumbernauld, close to Glasgow, the studio facility has two soundstages measuring 17,000 and 10,000 square feet, an armory, a props warehouse, a design studio, a carpentry shop and complete post-production facilities.


On the other hand, the relatively untouched countryside is uniquely suited to solve many of the demands associated with the sweeping story that spans two centuries and set in locations ranging from a World War II battlefield and a 1940's-era bed and breakfast, to 18th century castles, fortresses, prisons, villages and taverns. The "Outlander" production team has utilized some of Scotland's most iconic locations as they bring Claire's journey to life, including:


Doune Castle: A magnificent late-14th century courtyard castle that boasts a 100-foot high gatehouse and includes a splendid Lord's Hall. It serves as the exterior for Castle Leoch, the seat of Clan MacKenzie where Claire is a guest in 1743.


The Royal Burgh of Culross: A medieval village known for its red-tiled buildings and cobblestone streets. It was founded by St. Serf around 550 AD, and is today maintained by the National Trust for Scotland. Culross stands in for the town of Crainsmuir, the village outside Castle Leoch.


Blackness Castle: Perched alongside the Forth of Firth, this forbidding fortress has served as a garrison barracks, a state prison and an ammunition depot. It was built in the 15th century and hasbeen Crown property since 1453, when it passed into the hands of King James II of Scotland. In "Outlander," Blackness is used as a fort where the English are stationed.


Hopetoun House: Built between 1699 and 1707, this estate is one of the finest examples of 18th century architecture in Britain and features some of Scotland's best examples of carving, wainscoting and ceiling painting. "Outlander" used interior and exterior features of the estate. Scottish actor Sam Heughan, who plays Jamie Fraser, could not imagine the series being based anywhere else.




Creating a realistic representation of the period is a driving passion throughout all elements of the production. "One of the selling points of the book is its authenticity, and I wanted to capture that," EP Ronald D. Moore says. "As a storyteller and a producer, I want the audience to believe in the world we're creating. Fundamentally, if they believe this is a real place with real people (even if it's a fantastical world), then you can take them anywhere you want to go. "We try not to wink at the audience. We're not making it campy. We went out of our way to say, ‘you know what? We're not going to reinvent the 18th Century. We're not going to try to make it cool and hip for today's audience. We're going to present it as it was. And we're going to try to convince you that this really happened to this woman, that this is a real journey.'

  "There's a lot of research each individual department does. We have a historian, who reads every script and every outline and gives notes back to the writers. We also have a full-time herbalist who specializes in the medicine and herbology of the time. We also have a Gaelic tutor, who teaches the Highlanders who need to speak Gaelic. So from soup to nuts, the whole show is very focused on trying to sweat all the details in every way that we can.  



While the heart of "Outlander" is a love story, its setting lends drama and adventure to the series. "We go to a very tumultuous time in history," EP Ronald D. Moore explains. "In 1743, Scotland is part of the United Kingdom, but it's a restless country. There have been a couple of uprisings against the English crown at this point. There is a lot of fighting around the edges as the Jacobites are trying to restore the Stuarts to the crown of England. This is the world Claire steps into, with Redcoats and a military presence throughout the country. 

  It's not an open rebellion yet, but that is coming. There will be a second rising of the Jacobites, which will end this whole drama. The English will massacre the Highlanders at the battle of Culloden and will go on to decimate the Highland culture. Claire is entering a world that is doomed; these people, this land, the culture
she becomes part of will be wiped out in a short span of time. She's stepping into the last moments of this particular culture."



Although the first season of Outlander features beautiful locations from all over Scotland, Production Designer Jon Gary Steele believes the most iconic image will be Castle Leoch, the seat of Colum MacKenzie, Laird of Leoch, and Claire Randall's first destination after she arrives in 1743. Many scenes were shot in and around Doune Castle, a late 14th century courtyard fortress. But even more of the action takes place inside the Great Hall, a room meticulously constructed to bring the drama of Diana Gabaldon's epic love story to life. Steele describes the Great Hall as elegant, yet primitive.


"We looked at a hundred different pictures of European great halls to see which direction to go," Steele remembers. "I wanted it to feel Scottish and to be kind of opulent but have an edge. The wood paneling has been basically flamed torched, and then brushed so it looks like it's 200 years old before you even stained it. Everything in the room is stone and wood." Working with EP Ronald Moore, Steele created a backstory for his castle. "We wanted it to look like it has been in Colum's family for hundreds of years, handed down through the generations. There's very little furniture, it's sparse basically benches, big tables, and lots of candles. It's not a nice little cozy home. It's a castle, with all of the drama that would happen in a castle."One exception to the austerity of the Castle décor can be found in Laird MacKenzie's room, where the walls are covered in tapestries that depict scenes of the Scottish landscapes. "His disability means Colum is a bit cocooned," explains Set Decorator Gina Cromwell, who commissioned the wall hangings for the series. "The tapestries are pictures of forests and things he can't get to anymore, so in way it's his opportunity to experience the outdoors."




If possible, Costume Designer Terry Dresbach's research on what an authentic 18th century Highlands wardrobe would entail was even more painstaking – the lack of source material created a real quandary. She found volumes and volumes on fashions during the same era in France, Russia and England, but Scotland? "Not a lot," she says. During her research, Dresbach did learn that one of the most iconic elements of Scottish cultural history is about as fanciful as Claire's trip through the stones. "It didn't take long to find out that the tartan is a highly contested piece of history. There's not a lot known about what actually Highlanders wore. 


There aren't a lot of paintings of actual Highlanders that are painted during that time but there are paintings by the Victorians who found everything about this period of time very, very romantic. They gave us clan tartans, the Victorians. The idea that this clan wears a bright red tartan, this clan wears a purple one, this one wears a yellow one, is very contested." What's not disputed? Even back in the 18th century, Scottish men wore kilts. And so do the men of "Outlander" – in fact, each of the actors has brought their own style to how they tie their kilt. "Each of them has found their way that they feel comfortable." Dresbach explains. "Graham MacTavish (Dougal MacKenzie) wears his in an almost ornamental way, while Grant O'Rourke (Rupert) ties his in the traditional way that poor people did, using a leather thong rather than a pin to hold it in place. Sam Heughan often wears his with the back down."

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