Get ready to spend your summer at Fraser's Ridge — Starz has confirmed that the new season of its megapopular period romance Outlander will officially arrive on our screens this June.
The lush and romantic series follows the story of Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe), a World War II nurse transported back to mid-eighteenth-century Scotland thanks to a group of magical standing stones. She falls in love with the handsome Scottish warrior Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan), and the two endure all manner of sorrow, hardship, violence, and joy across time and continents as they struggle to stay together. As Season 7 begins, the Frasers were homesteaders in North Carolina in 1776, the American Revolution looms in the distance, and the family attempts to reckon with where and when they belong.
Like many series, Outlander saw its most recent season cut short by production complications due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (It was also impacted by scheduling issues caused by star Balfe's real-life pregnancy.) Ultimately, it filmed and aired fewer episodes than in previous seasons of the series, disappointing fans and folks behind the scenes alike.
That problem will be rectified in Season 7, billed as a super-sized installment at sixteen episodes. This likely comes as a huge relief for fans, as it means that when combined with the shortened eight-episode Season 6, we're still getting the same number of episodes in the end. Just in a slightly more elongated time frame. Because although the new season officially arrives in June, it's also being split into two halves, and its final eight installments won't air until at some point in 2024. Starz giveth and Starz taketh away, is what I'm saying.
Season 7 will see the returns of several fan favorites, as various time travel shenanigans will presumably allow us to see some familiar faces again. Graham McTavish (House of the Dragon) is back as Jamie’s uncle Dougal MacKenzie, along with Nell Hudson (Victoria) as Jamie’s ex-wife, Laoghaire Fraser; Layla Burns (She Will) as Marsali’s sister, Joan MacKimmie; Steven Cree (COBRA) as Ian’s father, Old Ian Murray; and Lotte Verbeek (The Blacklist) as a fellow time traveler, Geillis Duncan. Kristin Atherton (Waterloo Road) will take over the role of Jamie’s sister Jenny Murray, previously played in Seasons 1-3 by Laura Donnelly (The Nevers).
Several new faces will also be joining the show this year, including Charles Vandervaart (Lost in Space) as William Ransom, Jamie’s grown son; Izzy Meikle-Small (Ripper Street) as Quaker woman Rachel Hunter: Joey Phillips (Doctors) as her brother Dr. Denzell Hunter; and loria Obianyo (Dune) as Mercy Woodcock, a free Black woman trying to navigate life in Colonial America. Rod Hallett (The Last Kingdom) plays the infamous Revolutionary solder turned traitor Benedict Arnold, and Chris Fulton (Bridgerton) is Rob Cameron, a new acquaintance of Roger and Brianna’s.
Season 7 of Outlander is reportedly based on An Echo in the Bone, the seventh in author Diana Gabaldon's popular series of novels. However, it will likely include some events from its predecessor, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, that were left out due to Season 6's unexpectedly shortened length.
Outlander has already been renewed for an eighth and final season, and a prequel series, Outlander: Blood of My Blood, has been greenlit. The show will focus on the romance between Jamie's parents, Ellen MacKenzie and Brian Fraser, though that's unlikely to air before 2024 either.
The first half of Outlander Season 7 will premiere on Friday, June 16. Seasons 1-6 are currently streaming on the STARZ app.