First, I want to tell you I know the answer to most of these as the books would answer them but I want to look at these questions like I've never read the books and actually see what we can make of what Outlander has told us so far. Here are the questions:
All great questions, let's see if we can come to some reasonable conclusions without referencing the books, not that I don't love my books but the show is bound to be a bit different and there are show watchers who just don't want to be spoiled.
Q1: Time Travel
I don't know that they've fully explained this on the show. What we have learned is that it was 1946 when Claire traveled back in time to 1743. That is around 203 years. Or an approximation of it. But when Claire returned to the future, in episode 213 Dragonfly in Amber, it is 1746 and she returns to 1948. That is only 202 years. So which is it?
Wait. Let's talk about the other time traveler in the room. Geillis/Gillian. She goes through the stones in 1968 and clearly travels back more than 203 years because she's there before Claire. We don't know if she got there 1 or 5 years before but if she got there 5 minutes before then she went back 225 years. Clearly she was there enough time to establish herself and seduce Arthur Duncan into marriage so I'd guess 230 years.
How the hell does this time travel work? Well, I'm going to guess it doesn't take you through time 5 years or even 5 minutes since it seems to be a large jump through time so far. But you have to wonder if Geillis's time jump had something to do with her killing her husband. Honestly, I don't want her to be right about that and clearly Claire didn't need a death to travel. And then there is Geillis/Gillian's notebook?
And Claire herself tells us Gillian believed you needed a human sacrifice and gemstones to protect and guide. So does this mean a gemstone is needed to control the distance of your travel which would explain Geillis large jump. And remember Claire actually had Jamie's father's ring when she went through to come back to the future and it appeared the stone was missing, which we all would think means it just fell out but what if traveling destroys it or something? And yes the first jump was 203 but was if it was less than a full year making it 202 and change? Does this mean if you don't try to steer you're looking at 202-203 years?
So far, I think the idea here is that you jump a large distance. Though I do wonder if Geillis knows how to jump smaller or if she is only guiding herself back farther so she'd get there before Culloden which seems likely. But this leads us to the next question...
Q2: Can history change?
I heard a fan say the idea was that Claire going through time actually made the Battle of Culloden fail. I don't think this is true. One could definitely argue that Jamie and Claire's interference with Charles and his finances could have led to the later poverty of the Jacobite Army but I feel like we should point out another part of history that happened regardless of their interference. Frank.
Claire realizes after Wentworth that BJR's death means no Frank, or at least she assumes so. She doesn't dwell on it then until she gets a second chance to save Frank. So we see in France how she doesn't want the duel because she so sure it could end BJR's line effectively removing Frank from the timeline and possibly preventing her from being in Scotland where she time traveled and then met Jamie. IE no Frank no J&C.
Jamie is willing to go along with this simply because he wants Claire to be able to flee to Frank if necessary. But then after BJR's perverted actions, Jamie (rightly) challenges him to a duel and wounds him supposedly so he can't have children, or at least I think we are supposed to assume that. So that means no Frank, right?
But Frank does exist because Alex is actually Frank's biological six-times great-grandfather and the only reason Frank doesn't know that is because Mary weds Jack because Alex was dying and then Jack died at Culloden according to the timeline. This seems to be the actual history. Mary clearly wanted Alex, though it could be said without Claire's influence Sandringham may have arranged a match between Mary and BJR which also seems unlikely. I think Frank didn't have all the fact so inherently Claire was wrong about Frank's line. But if BJR had died earlier Frank's family line may have been vastly different.
Either way, Frank always comes about. But I think it would have happened the same way no matter what. This is speculation. So the real question is does history happen no matter what or can you change small things and not something like a battle which has many players?
Hm. I don't think we have enough information for a decision here.
Q3: When will Claire be?
When will Claire be should she go back to the past? Great question which I think links back Q1. Remember Claire went 203 years into the past and then 202 years forward with a gemstone which Geillis believes guides you. Granted Geillis is a little on the nuts side of things but she might just be right considering the large jump in time she made. And there is the possibility it wasn't 203 years but seemed that way. Or it is possible having that stone on her hand the second time controlled the time jump somehow?
I personally think Claire should recreate her journey from 1746 to 1948. It was 202 years and if it has been 20 years then it is probably a good idea to see if she can find Jamie 20 years later. So if I was jumping though time to find Jamie (I wish.) I would find a gem maybe even whatever was in that ring and go through hoping it works.
First, I do think Roger, Bree and Claire need to make sure Jamie survived that long.
Q4: Will Frank return to Outlander?
Honestly, why not? I mean I have no idea what the writers are doing but I suspect they are going to tell us about the time Jamie and Claire had apart from each other. We have to learn about her relationship with Frank, her time becoming a doctor, and Brianna's relationship with Frank. Plus we need to know what happened to Jamie after the battle. If we don't find out anything about this stuff... then what is the point in separating them.
I would even suspect we might see Frank in future seasons as well because he was a huge part of Claire and Brianna's lives. I'm not a Frank fan but the man raised Bree and he is part of the story.
Q5: Did BJR die at Culloden?
Well if we are looking at show evidence we could refer to whether or not history can be changed. According to Claire he was to die on April 16, 1746 at the Battle of Culloden. If he went into battle that day then I would assume yes, on the premise that it is hard to stop or control something like a battle with all those players, since Jamie and Claire didn't seem to be able to stop history. But the dilemma is that BJR knows. He knew the date of his death because Claire told him and then he knew a battle would be fought that day. It is possible the man saved his own neck and removed himself from the battlefield just to save himself.
But would you think a soldier like BJR would flee a battle to ensure his survival especially since it seemed like he loathed himself in The Hail Mary?
I think the real answer is we'll see next season. This one is a little hard to guess at. But I vote Murtagh runs him down. That would be so satisfying.
Q6: How does Bree feel about Jamie?
Bloody hell. Who knows! First, she seemed to be rather angry about the whole thing, and I find her anger justified. No one wants to find out their parents have lied about their paternity for their entire life. Plus she clearly loved Frank or "Daddy" as she called him. It wouldn't be an easy thing to find out.
But in then, she actually wanted to know everything about Jamie minus the whole time travel part. And now that she knows the time travel is real, I would assume she just wants to find everything out. Considering we know Frank is dead and Claire wants to go back; one would think she wants to know more before her mother isn't there to tell her. Though I can see her being torn because of how much she loved Frank.
I guess we'll find out.
Q7: How much will Bree and Roger be in S3?
I do think this is up to the writers but we can make some assumptions:
I'm going to say a bit. It might not be a lot but I think there will be some. Maybe an episodes worth of time spread throughout the season?
Q8: How long is droughtlander?
So according to Ron Moore, they are busily writing the episodes now. He believed they would start filming in late August or early September. I want to say they started shooting S2 in April of 2015 and we had to wait until April of 2016 to watch.
Everyone from the Outlander production team is telling us that Droughtlander won't be as long. The droughtlander between Season 1A and Season 1B was 6 months but I don't think they stopped filming once they started with 1A. The gap between S1B and S2 was 11 months for a total of 17 months.
But if you consider the length of time it took them between Season 1B and Season 2 it is possible we'll be seeing Season 3 in the Fall 2017?
I honestly think they are telling us it won't be 17 months but it is very possible it will be approximately a year maybe less though I'm hoping they actually take a little time and make the show great rather than rushing.
It would be a remarkably good idea if they waited for Game of Thrones to finish off it's last season considering Outlander is moving to Sundays. We don't want it competing with GOT and if they wait until GOT ends then maybe we can snag some of their viewers.
Either way, I wouldn't be surprised if we waited at least a year from the end of S2.
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