Outlander Season 7 Will Probably Recast a Familiar Character

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Samantha Vincenty
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Photo credit: Robert Wilson
Photo credit: Robert Wilson

To be an Outlander fan is always an exercise in patience, whether you're enduring the year-plus wait between new seasons on Starz, or checking Netflix for season 5 on a daily basis. But at a certain point in 2020, it was easy to wonder if we'd ever see Jamie (Sam Heughan), Claire (Caitriona Balfe), and the rest of the Fraser's Ridge gang on our screens again. The COVID-19 pandemic put Outlander season 6 production on a long pause, and while they've resumed filming as of February 2021, the current Droughtlander remains very real. Fortunately, the historical-fantasy-romance series dropped a morsel of good news on March 14: The show is not canceled; it's been renewed for season 7.

"We look forward to following the adventures of Claire and Jamie in America during the Revolution as well as more time travel during this next season," Starz president of original programming Christina Davis said in a statement announcing the greenlit season. While this renewal isn't quite as exciting as when the network announced seasons 5 and 6 at the same time back in 2018, we're just going to live in the present and look forward to the dozens of fresh episodes that await us...eventually.

Here's what we do know about Outlander season 7's premiere date, cast, and plot.

Outlander's seventh season will have 12 episodes.

As with seasons 5 and 6, we’ll get a dozen episodes in season 7. That’s down from season four’s 13, but hey, we’ll take it.

Is there a trailer yet—or even a release date?!

Goodness, no. But we’ll let you know the minute there is.

The plot is based on the book An Echo in the Bone.

Each season of Outlander is primarily based on a volume from Diana Gabaldon's book series, and season 7 is no exception. An Echo in the Bone is the seventh of eight completed Outlander books. While it was released 12 years ago, a warning for non-book readers: Scroll past this section if you don’t want any spoilers!

On her site, Gabaldon sums up the four main Echo in the Bone plot threads as follows:

Jamie and Claire Fraser are now in the midst of the American Revolution;

Their daughter Brianna, her husband Roger MacKenzie, and their two children, settled at Lallybroch in the 1970′s (finding their feet after their return from the past—but are unaware that that past is just about to leap out at them again);

Lord John Grey and his step-son William (Jamie’s unacknowledged illegitimate son), are embroiled in the Revolution on the British side with William in the army and Lord John on the clandestine side of intelligence; and

Jamie’s nephew Young Ian: his troubled love-life is about to take another sharp left turn.

In the season 5 finale, we see Roger (Richard Rankin) and Bree (Sophie Skelton) attempt to pass back through the stones while tethered to their son, Jemmy. That attempt failed, ostensibly because one or both of them were unable to get Fraser’s Ridge out of their heads when they imagined “home.” Barring a major divergence from the books, that means we’ll see them go back to the future in either season 6 or 7.

The cast will include a new face playing someone you’ve met before.

Heughan, Balfe, Skelton, and Rankin will return as Jamie, Claire, Brianna, and Roger, the network confirms. Given their appearance in the source material, it’s safe to bet that we’ll also see David Berry and John Bell back as Lord John Grey and “Young” Ian Murray, respectively.

We’re most eager to see who’ll portray the all-grown-up William Ransom, the son Jamie conceived during Claire’s 20-year absence, who was raised by Lord John Grey. Last we saw William in season 4’s “Blood of My Blood,” he was played by young actor Oliver Finnegan, so this will be a Fergus-style recast.

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