Sam Heughan Just Gave Fans a Big Update on 'Outlander' Season 6 and It's "Much to Celebrate"

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Sam Heughan Just Gave Fans a Big Update on 'Outlander' Season 6 and It's "Much to Celebrate"
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First, "sing me a song of a lass that is gone ..." and then go ahead and read all of these exciting details about season 6 of Outlander.

The Starz historical drama series, which is based on the ongoing novel series by Diana Gabaldon, has continued to attract millions of fans since first premiering in August of 2014. Now, the popular series is on its sixth season and shows no signs of slowing down. But what will happen to the Fraser family when new episodes come out? Here's all that we know:

When is the Outlander season 6 release date?

Photo credit: Robert Wilson
Photo credit: Robert Wilson

Though no official Outlander season 6 premiere date has been set yet, new episodes are expected to start airing on Starz in early 2022, per Deadline. That said, the first look at Outlander's new season was recently revealed. In the one-minute-long teaser, Claire warns Jamie about the Revolutionary War. "It’s starting — the storm, the war. It's almost here," she says. What's more, fans can expect a 90-minute premiere episode, according to Deadline.

Sam Heughan tweeted on June 1 that filming for the sixth season had wrapped up at the end of May. As he went on to explain in the same tweet, season 6 of Outlander will be comprised of eight episodes, a much shorter season compared to the first five, which had between 12 to 16 episodes each. That said, the actor promised that season 7 would be "extended." In other words, season 7 will include 16 episodes.

The decision to shorten season 6 came as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which has wreaked havoc on many TV shooting and production schedules across the board. "Filming in 2021 has presented an unprecedented set of challenges which led us to the decision to truncate the season in order to bring the fans the most vibrant and dynamic season as soon as possible," Outlander showrunner Matthew B. Roberts told Deadline.

Who will be in the Outlander season 6 cast?

So far, here's who we know will for sure be in the Outlander season 6 cast:

  • Caitriona Balfe as Claire

  • Sam Heughan as Jamie

  • Sophie Skelton as Brianna

  • Richard Rankin as Roger

In addition, the show announced in March a few more cast additions to play the Christie family. Actress Jessica Reynolds will portray Malva Christie, "Tom’s spirited daughter who is captivated by Claire’s work and modern thinking, getting her into trouble with her conservative father."

Meanwhile, Malva's father, Tom Christie, will be played by Mark Lewis Jones. Tom is described as "a fellow Ardsmuir prisoner and devout Protestant who arrives on Fraser’s Ridge seeking a place to settle... though not without some tension." Finally, Malva's brother, Allan Christie, will be played by Alexander Vlahos. Allan is "highly protective of his family as they settle into this new environment."

Are there any Outlander season 6 spoilers?

*Obviously, skip over this section if you want to avoid spoiling yourself*

Season 6 will continue to follow the events of Diana's book A Breath of Snow and Ashes, the sixth book in the Outlander saga. While we already see some parts of the book portrayed on screen — such as Claire's attack and Stephen Bonnet's death — it's expected that we'll continue to see the events laid out in A Breath of Snow and Ashes influence the direction of season 6.

"When we left season 5, the whole family is fractured," Sam explained during the Outlander End of Summer series. "They are together but Claire still has some healing to do."

Photo credit: Robert Wilson
Photo credit: Robert Wilson

Caitriona also agreed and added: "One of the things I am looking forward to seeing is how she copes with all of that and the repercussions of it. How the family as a whole unit heals together or help her to heal. I think that is going to be a really lovely part of the story."

Based on the synopsis of the sixth book, it sounds like we'll get a closer look at the Fraser family as the American Revolutionary War nears.

The year is 1772, and on the eve of the American Revolution, the long fuse of rebellion has already been lit. Men lie dead in the streets of Boston, and in the backwoods of North Carolina, isolated cabins burn in the forest. With chaos brewing, the governor calls upon Jamie Fraser to unite the backcountry and safeguard the colony for King and Crown. But from his wife Jamie knows that three years hence the shot heard round the world will be fired, and the result will be independence — with those loyal to the King either dead or in exile. And there is also the matter of a tiny clipping from The Wilmington Gazette, dated 1776, which reports Jamie’s death, along with his kin. For once, he hopes, his time-traveling family may be wrong about the future.

As Parade points out, there are several other key plot points in the book that may be touched on in season 6, including:

  • Jamie is given a new job that requires him to travel to meet with Cherokee tribes.

  • Claire is wrongly accused of murder after the death of Malva.

  • Roger becomes a minister.

  • Brianna and Roger become parents to a baby girl.

But if Malva does die, Caitriona revealed that Claire and the newcomer will grow unexpectedly close. "Outlander does baddies and villains quite well," the actress told Entertainment Weekly. "[The Christies] aren't your typical villains, which is great and refreshing. Claire and Malva build a great relationship and bond. It's very destabilizing for Claire. It's a really heartbreaking, but a really twisted narrative that they all get embroiled in."

Recently, on the second day of New York Comic Con, Sam opened up about his character standing up for Claire — and the consequences. “You see that Jamie returns with Lionel’s body and has [sought] out revenge for what happened to Claire,” he said, per Variety. “It’s pretty clear that this is only the beginning of an even bigger, deeper animosity between the two. The Browns are very dangerous, and Richard is [an] extremely, extremely dangerous man … You’re going to see a lot more of the Browns and they’re not very nice people.”

How can I watch or stream Outlander?

Luckily, fans of Outlander have several options when it comes to enjoying the drama series. First, Outlander episodes are available when you subscribe to Starz, a cable network you can add to your current TV subscription. Right now, you can sign up and receive three months of Starz for $5 per month. Once you have Starz, the network airs old episodes of Outlander throughout the week (you can check the website for episode timing info).

You can also sign up for Starz via your Amazon Prime Video account — it'll cost you $.99 per month for two months and $8.99 per month after that.

Netflix subscribers can also enjoy seasons 1-4 on Netflix. It's unclear when seasons 5 and 6 will hit the streaming platform. The show is also available to enjoy with premium subscriptions to Hulu, Sling TV, Philo and YouTube TV.

Finally, episodes are available to purchase for $1.99 via Google Play, Vudu, YouTube and Apple TV.

How can I read the Outlander books in order?

While waiting for season 6 to be released, hardcore fans of the saga can keep themselves occupied with all eight books. Diana's ninth book of the franchise, Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, is set to come out on November 23, 2021, but you can preorder it now on Amazon.

See all of her books listed out in order below:

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