'Outlander': 7 Burning Questions for Season 3

8:06 AM 7/18/2016

by Sydney Bucksbaum

Here are the biggest lingering questions for when the Starz time-traveling romance drama returns.

Steffan Hill/Starz

After an entire season of knowing that everything Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan) were attempting to accomplish would fail, the season two finale of Outlander actually ended on a hopeful note.

In the final moments of the season, Claire and her grown daughter Brianna (Sophie Skelton) learned from Roger Wakefield (Richard Rankin) in the present day that Jamie didn't die during the Battle of Culloden in the past as was previously thought. Armed with that knowledge, Claire decided that she would go back through the stones and reunite with her second husband and the father of her daughter.

Unfortunately, viewers are going to have to wait for a long time to see that reunion play out onscreen, as the "Droughtlander" has officially begun again. Here, The Hollywood Reporter looks at seven of the biggest burning questions left hanging in the balance that Outlander will hopefully answer come season three.

Note: While some of these questions may already be answered in Diana Gabaldon's third book, Voyager, executive producer Ron Moore has proven several times that he has no qualms about changing the story from the page to the screen. With that in mind, book three spoilers were not taken into account when compiling this list.

  • 7. How Does Time Travel Work?

    Diana Gabaldon has created her own set of rules for time travel on Outlander, and most of them are still a mystery. Geillis/Gillian (Lotte Verbeek) clearly thought you needed a human sacrifice to go through the stones and so she murdered her husband, but Claire didn't kill anyone both times she went through the stones. Human sacrifice can be ruled out, but what are the other requirements for traveling through time? 

  • 6. When Will Claire Arrive in the Past?

    Motivated to go back through the stones to find Jamie, will Claire be able to manipulate her time-travel this time around? Will she be able to go back to the days after the Battle of Culloden, or will she return 20 years after the battle? If it's the latter, will there be flashbacks to those 20 years to show where Jamie has been between the Battle of Culloden and when Claire arrives?

  • 5. Will Frank (Tobias Menzies) Return in Flashbacks?

    When the season two finale began, it was 20 years after Claire returned to the present day, and Frank had already passed away. When season three returns, will there be any flashbacks to show Frank raising Brianna as his own daughter, despite knowing that she was Jamie's? Or is that character gone for good from the show?

  • 4. Will Black Jack (Menzies) Die in the Battle of Culloden?

    Claire knew from Frank's history his ancestor Black Jack was fated to die in the Battle of Culloden, and so she used that ominous information to "curse" him whenever she needed to take him down a peg. But history already failed Claire once by making her think that Jamie died at Culloden. Could Black Jack escape his fate and live past his recorded death date?

  • 3. How Does Brianna Feel About Her True Parentage?

    Now that Brianna knows the truth about Claire traveling through time, and she's seen the stones work their magic with her own eyes, how will she react? Will this knowledge bring her closer to her mother? How will it change her going forward?

  • 2. How Much Will Brianna and Roger Be Featured?

    When Claire goes back in time to reunite with Jamie, will Brianna and Roger's time on Outlander be paused until season four? Or will they still be featured in flashes to the present-day storyline?

  • 1. How Long Will the Droughtlander Last?

    Because Starz renewed Outlander for seasons three and four early, that cut down the length of the production hiatus, meaning season three will premiere earlier than viewers are expecting. But how much earlier?

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