In recent years, Starz has made strides in the competition among fellow premium cable networks Showtime and HBO thanks to a unique lineup of series garnering critical attention as well as praise from fans. The variety of shows at home at the network include crime drama Power, pirate epic Black Sails, and horror comedy Ash vs Evil Dead. Additionally, Starz is home to Emmy-nominated sci-fi/romantic drama Outlander, based on the best-selling series of novels by Diana Gabaldon.
Adapted to TV by Ronald D. Moore (Battlestar Galactica), Outlander follows Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe), a nurse from the 1940s who falls through ancient standing stones and winds up in 15th century Scotland, where she meets Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan). The pair get married and fall in love - in that order - and are forced to contend with English soldier Jonathan "Black Jack" Randall (Tobias Menzies). In season 2 of Outlander, the couple attempted to prevent the Battle of Culloden between the Scottish Highlanders and England's forces, but were unsuccessful. Now, new photos from season 3 of Outlander tease the dreaded battle.
EW debuted a series of new photos from the Battle of Culloden as it will be depicted in season 3. Season 2 followed dual timelines, one leading up to Culloden, and one of Claire taking place 20 years after she had traveled back to her home time - pregnant with Jamie's child. The season concluded with Jamie sending Claire home so as to avoid Culloden, and, in the 1960s, learning Jamie survived the battle. As Balfe told EW, “For the first few episodes, we’re going to show the parallel journeys that Jamie and Claire took during their 20 years apart from one another.” Take a look at the photos:
Outlander has focused on the Battle of Culloden since season 1 began introducing the Jacobite rebellion. However, despite all the efforts of Jamie and Claire in France during season 2 as well as their tactics once they returned to Scotland, the finale left off with Jamie preparing to enter battle. Now, for season 3, executive producer and showrunner Moore spoke to EW about the choice to portray the Battle of Culloden, which is largely skipped over in Gabaldon's novels:
“We are playing more of [the Battle of Culloden] out on camera. It just felt like we have been promising it for a while. We should give the audience some sense of what happened on that moor.”
Certainly, given all the lead up, fans will be excited to see the battle play out, as additionally indicated by Heughan: "It felt like everyone was really desperate to get into this battle. This is a big part of our culture and our history.” Still, the battle - as well as the 20-year journeys of Jamie and Claire - will only be included within the opening episodes of season 3. As fans of the series know, Outlander will be adapting the third novel of Gabaldon's series, Voyager, for season 3, which takes Jamie and Claire on a globetrotting adventure to the Americas, and later Jamaica. So, there will be plenty more action and adventure in season 3 of Outlander beyond the Battle of Culloden.
Outlander will return for season 3 on Starz.