7 Things We Learned From 'Outlander's PaleyFest 2020 Panel

Outlander PaleyFest panel
Paley Center

Outlander fans will be waiting a while before they re-enter the 18th-century world of Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire Fraser (Caitriona Balfe), but thankfully Paley is easing some of the tension with their recent PaleyFest LA panel.

Moderated by TV Insider's own Kate Hahn, the discussion — which is viewable via the Paley Center for Media's YouTube — revealed plenty of Season 5 secrets and hints about what's to come in Season 6. Participating in the panel were stars Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Sophie Skelton and Richard Rankin along with author Diana Gabaldon and executive producers Maril Davis and Matthew B. Roberts.

The Starz series follows the harrowing time-traversing love story of Jamie and Claire Fraser who were brought together under unusual circumstances when she accidentally travels back in time from the 1940s to the 1740s where she meets her future highlander husband.

Together they reflected on some of Season 5's biggest moments including Claire's deeper dive into the medical world, varying filming styles, the challenges of grieving and much more. Below, we take a look at some of the most interesting tidbits revealed, including some Season 6 hints. For the full conversation, check out the panel below as well.

Outlander, Season 6, TBA, Starz

 

outlander season 5 claire
Starz

Getting Medical

When asked about Claire’s surgery and Season 5’s medical scenes, Balfe was extremely complimentary towards the show’s onset medical consultant. “It’s really fun that you sort of get to create this little world for Claire, especially when we were doing all of the penicillin stuff,” Balfe said of working in the Fraser’s Ridge surgery room. “It just helps you so much as an actor when you have such a rich environment to step into that feels so real … and we also have an incredible advisor,” Balfe added. “She’s been with us from the very beginning,”  Balfe continued to say of the onset consultant. “When we had to do the tonsillectomy she was incredible about walking me through all of that.”

outlander season 5 jamie
Starz

Jamie's Loss and Growth

In Season 5, Jamie endures the loss of his godfather Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix) during the battle at Alamance, “For me that was a really big moment, and I think for Jamie it was a huge moment,” Heughan said of the storyline. “The repercussions are felt for many episodes afterwards,” he added, elaborating that Jamie’s run-in with a snake leads to “a really strong moment where Jamie has to confront his own mortality.”  Heughan did that with the help of the makeup department as he gushed, “We had these really amazing prosthetics that we used throughout that story.”

Outlander Season 5
Starz

Bree's Closure

When it came to Brianna’s own struggles in Season 5, Sophie Skelton shared that her character isn’t in any imminent danger anymore after the death of her abuser Stephen Bonnet (Ed Speelers). “She can, for all intents and purposes, live her life,” Skelton said. “Obviously, I’m sure there’s moments where it will seep in again, but there is some element of healing there,” she added of the trauma her character endured at the hands of the pirate.

outlander season 5 roger
Starz

Filming Roger's Episode

In the Season 5 episode, “Famous Last Words,” Roger (Richard Rankin) nearly dies by hanging and the journey is depicted through a series of silent film-styled sequences. The standout installment was interesting to film as Rankin joked that it was a stunt double who went through the hanging before he revealed how some of the shots were created. “The hardest thing to shoot, I think, all season, was they had this special lens … it’s a really really long sort of narrow lens,” Rankin revealed of when shooting for the hanging took place. “We shot that a lot, and that was quite difficult to shoot … and trying to tell that story from a really confined space with this lens literally about five centimeters from your eyeballs, that was quite tricky.”

Outlander season 5
Starz

Claire's Thanksgiving Dream Sequence

In the Season 5 finale installment, Claire endures extreme abuse and enters a disassociation state which plunges her into a dream sequence that includes a ’60s era Thanksgiving gathering. When asked if the dream sequence was filmed before or after Claire’s trauma, Matthew B. Roberts revealed, “We shot a little chunk of after the abduction, and then we went in for like a week and a half in the modern house.” Balfe added that, “The actual night shoots we did was after that.”

Outlander Season 5
Starz

Staying in the Past

When Skelton was asked about Bree’s presence in the past, despite belonging in the 1960s, she revealed that her character is staying for family and that following Claire’s kidnapping and assault, it’s even more reason for her to stick around. As for where that could head in Season 6?  Roberts teased that the Fraser family has always put themselves out there in different situations and this time will be no different. But along with putting yourselves out there, you also put yourselves at risk. He said people should expect joys, drama, suffering, tears and more.

Outlander season 5
Starz

More From Season 6

Along with hinting at “something new” for Roger and Brianna, executive producer Maril Davis said “Jamie and Claire, their love deepens; Roger and Brianna, they have their own journey… and Caitlin [O’Ryan], who plays Lizzie, has a great story.” Fans will have to tune in for the already confirmed season once the show finally arrives, but rest assured, the entire cast is more than ready to get back to work once COVID-19 restrictions on production lift.