Outlander: Why Jamie and Claire weren't present for their grandson's birth in season 4
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The season 4 finale of Outlander on Starz was a category 4 tearjerker: Young Ian gave himself up to the Mohawk to free a depleted Roger, while Brianna gave birth to a son who may or may not be Roger’s baby. But fans of Diana Gabaldon’s Drums of Autumn — the fourth book in the Outlander series, on which the season was based — couldn’t help but notice a slight omission in the otherwise breathtaking finale. Unlike what happens in the book, Claire and Jamie were not present for the birth of Jeremiah, or Jemmy, at River Run. Instead, Claire and Jamie reunited with Bree after she delivered their first grandchild.
While deep in production on season 5 in Scotland, executive producer Matthew B. Roberts and star Sophie Skelton (Brianna) agreed to break up Droughtlander by answering a few burning questions about season 4 — specifically, why grandma and grandpa totally missed the birth. Here’s what they said!
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Fans were disappointed that Claire and Jamie didn’t get to witness the birth of Jemmy.
SOPHIE SKELTON: I know. I can completely see why. Obviously from the book, that is a beautiful scene, and I think it would have been a lovely Fraser family moment. But I think, luckily we make up for that when Brianna comes out with Jemmy and she realizes that Roger isn’t with them. They have that lovely little family moment there. Unspoken things are said, especially at the dinner table scene when Bree comes back in. The Frasers are really there to support each other.
MATTHEW B. ROBERTS: Once again, in the power structure, the decision was made not to show that. There is always debate in the room. You can debate 100 times about something, and somebody ultimately makes a decision. I never debate whether it’s a right decision or a wrong decision, or whether it’s good or bad. It’s just the decision, and then you fall in line. You turn and make the best show you can.
SKELTON: It kind of resonates today with a lot of modern women. There are single moms, or maybe their parents aren’t around because they passed away. For someone of Bree’s age, I think it shows such strength of her character that she’s sort of surrounded by, not strangers, but people she doesn’t really know. She doesn’t really know Jocasta that well, and Lizzie is relatively new. Phaedra’s new. For Bree to do that alone is, I think, pretty great. It shows how far she’s come from the beginning of the season in terms of growing up, becoming a woman. It also then gives her that moment, just her and Jemmy, when she feels she might not be able to accept him. Then that sort of motherly love comes out of her and she realizes that she can accept this baby no matter who the father is.
Filming on season 5 of Outlander began in April. The next 12 episodes be based on The Fiery Cross, the fifth book in Gabaldon’s best-selling series. The story will continue in colonial America as the Frasers build their new life on their namesake ridge.
Starz has yet to announce a return date.