Are you grinning yet? I can’t tell you how happy it made me to see Duncan Lacroix credits listed for the upcoming Outlander 405 episode, “Savages”. Many of us have been pinning for our favorite godfather and all out best man to have at your side. As was done in season 3, Murtagh has been wrapped up in mystery, and seriously kept under wraps. Duncan dropped his Twitter account earlier this year. There were many rumors it was hacked, and many fans had speculation as to him marrying Jocasta. I think with all the pressure on about keeping his character under wraps, the huge fan base he had, and the fact that Twitter can drive anyone nuts, we lost him in the media and contact with his fun rants and musings. Never fear, he resurfaced on Instagram and you can get a few tidbits from him on his explorations. Let’s hope he’ll have an interview with a journalist in the next week after the episode, or even post some BTS from the filming.
So, where has he been? If you recall in last season’s separation from Jamie (Sam Heughan), Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix) and the other Ardsmuir Prisoners were shipped off to the Colonies for indentureship to serve out their terms. Being indentured means you work effectively as a slave, similar to Jamie’s situation at Helwater, but under less desirable conditions. Indentureship was also used as a way to buy passage to the New World. In essence, it’s another form of slavery and servitude without pay. You are a servant for 14 years with no real control on your life.
In this season, we have seen Jamie Fraser come to the colonies, procure a land grant, and as he mentions to Fergus to start looking for the Ardsmuir prisoners to see if they have survived and can settle the land, no real mention of Murtagh. As a matter of fact, Jamie doesn’t seem to give the man much thought. Very odd for a life long companion and godfather, wouldn’t you say? Or is that true, is he suppressing an urge due to other obligations, or a feeling that he let his kinsman down? It is possible the writers wanted to build up the suspense and keep viewers focused on the developing Brianna and Roger storyline. However, with a relationship such as this, why has Jamie not brought up finding Murtagh sooner, he only references his men from Ardsmuir? Two of them, Lesley and Gavin found Jamie in Edinburgh. What kept Murtagh FitzGibbons Fraser from finding Jamie again? This episode promises to show the hardships of the colonies even more intensely.
Knowing Murtagh as we do, with all this hardship and separation from Jamie, and the fact the man would be in his 60s by this point, would he have survived? Many did not live past 30 years. With his personality, he may have gotten into some trouble in his indentureship, had more years added on. He could have come out of it so scarred from everything that staying and becoming a Mountain Man would be the best answer, it’s as close to his Highlander sensibilities as you could come in the American Colonies. BTS fan filming capture in Cumbernauld last winter showed what appeared to be Lacroix in just such a “rig out”, white hair and mountain attire. Will he have gone a bit native, maybe even have an Indian family? Perhaps he has finally found someone he could settle with. We hope he just brings himself to Fraser’s Ridge.
This episode promises some serious conflict. Book readers will know of the tragedy that faces Claire. Claire spends a great deal of time trying to heal others, and work with the Cherokee (Tuscarora healer in Book), Adawehi/Nayawenne(book) (Tantoo Cardinal), to understand the plants in the area. She also seeks to help a German family with tragic results. This leaves Claire in Fear for her family’s life.
The Frasers and Young Ian spend a great deal of time building on the common ground they have been trying to establish with the Indians, and Jamie starts showing his talents for acquiring language. Characters are mentioned in the IMDB listing that coincide with the tragedy that is about to roll out. The aftermath of it will make it very difficult for Fraser’s Ridge. Which is why Jamie’s adamant about getting Ardsmuir prisoners settled on the ridge to help to fight off conflict and make up to them all the terrible tragedy that befell them.
Jamie’s omission of outright looking for Murtagh may have been due to having to get himself established and making his family safe. The man has been occupied. It is not that he doesn’t think of Murtagh, he does too much. Would Murtagh have even survived this long? And how will he find him?
Jamie and Young Ian begin the quest to find some of Ardsmuir’s prisoners in 405: Savages. Get a fresh box of tissues out. Murtagh is the one to defend those he loves, we know he will.
Other possible appearances: Book readers know that we are revisited in Drums of Autumn by none other than Lord John Grey, with young Willie in tow. There may be just too much going on in this episode for this scene, and it well deserves to play out in it’s own episode, possibly the upcoming 406: Blood of My Blood, or 407: Down the Rabbit Hole.
Airing on Sunday, December 2, 2018 at 8PM EST 5PM PST in the US on Starz®, at Midnight Drop on December 2 for the Starz App ( 9PM PST). The show then airs on Amazon Prime UK on December 3, 2018. In Canada on the W Network.
Episode 405: Savages on IMDB
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