Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe have bigger concerns than bad weather when the century-spanning Starz series returns in early 2022.
Outlander Season 4 2018

Fraser's Ridge or Winterfell?

On Saturday, Starz dropped the first footage from the sixth season of its century-spanning drama Outlander during the show's panel at New York Comic Con. And from the looks of things, winter has come to the Ridge.

The clip features a snowy North Carolina (but really Scotland where production takes place), some new arrivals on the Ridge, and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan) watching someone nail a sign to a post telling locals to "refuse British goods," before a group of redcoats descend on their home. "It's starting," Claire tells her husband. "The storm, the war, it's almost here."

Outlander Season 6
Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan as Claire and Jamie on 'Outlander' season 6.
| Credit: Robert Wilson/Starz

In addition to the imminent arrival of the American Revolution, Jamie and Claire and their extended family have to deal with the arrival of the Christie family on Fraser's Ridge — and they're sure to shake things up. "You're gonna love them, and you're gonna hate them," said Heughan of the new kids on the ridge during the Comic Con panel. Later adding, "The Browns are very dangerous...they're not very nice people."

And the new arrivals don't exactly have great timing. Claire is still dealing with her trauma from the end of last season and as Balfe pointed out during the panel, that's something that she's going to have to confront head on.

"Claire has always been so good at compartmentalizing everything, she typically puts a lid on things and moves on," explained Balfe. "This is the first time she can't suppress something and this is the first time she really has to deal with what happens. We see her a little bit destabilized. That bleeds into every aspect of her life. As much as she wants to continue on as if nothing had has an effect on every aspect of her life and definitely her life as a healer/doctor."

Rest assured that Jamie is "very aware" of Claire's trauma and "keeping an eye on her," says Heughan, but he does admit that the Frasers begin to see the Ridge community "really disintegrate." He continued, "The war is coming — it always seems to be coming, but it is coming — and Jamie's really having to tread fine line between his loyalties. He knows he's on the wrong side, the British, and at some point he is gong to have to switch sides. It's even harder this season for him because he's being pulled in both directions."

'Outlander' season 6 key art
| Credit: Starz

Elsewhere there's some hardships for everyone favorite young couple, Marsali (Lauren Lyle) and Fergus (César Domboy) too. "You can see him struggling and deciding to drink his way out of sadness," shared Domboy of his character's plight. Lyle adds that Fergus and Marsali are in the "darkest place" they've ever been. "Me and Ces always joke that we're the cool couple that doesn't fight," she said. "Maybe there's one or two fights this season and Marsali's slightly more run off her feet."

As for Young Ian, after his descent into darkness last season, John Bell says his character is in a better place. "He's been through the ringer last season, bless him, but now he's a little bit more mature, a bit more grown. You're going to see that side of him because he's not afraid now to really stand up for what he believes him having had all of these amazing life experiences before hand. I'm excited for you guys to see a little more of maybe what happened to Ian and how he's going use that knowledge of what happens in the future to inform his decisions right now."

Adapted from Diana Gabaldon's international best-selling books, season 6 is based on material from the sixth book in the Outlander series, A Breath of Snow and Ashes. Gabaldon joined the show's executive producer Maril Davis and cast members Balfe, Heughan, Bell, Domboy, and Lyle for Saturday's discussion. Sophie Skelton (Brianna) and Richard Rankin (Roger MacKenzie) were not present, but will return for the show's new season.

Earlier this year, Starz announced the pick-up of the seventh season of Outlander which will be based on the seventh of the eight books in the series entitled An Echo in the Bone. During the panel, Davis shared that they're already in the room writing it and filming will start next year.

Season 6 of Outlander arrives on Starz in early 2022. Check out the teaser and poster above.

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