Murtagh Fitzgibbons Fraser, Jamie’s godfather and all around good guy, has been an Outlander fan favorite character since Season 1—he’s so popular, in fact, that the character was saved from being killed off. In the books, Murtagh dies at the Battle of Culloden, depicted in the TV show in the Season 3 premiere. In the TV show, he surprised book fans when he popped back up at Ardsmiur Prison, and later in the New World in Season 4.
The Outlander cast and creators were at New York Comic Con this past weekend to tease Season 5. One of the hottest topics of discussion was the fate of Murtagh, given that his character has gone off book… literally.
“The writers have done such a great job—I can’t reveal too much about Season 5—without a roadmap of tying things together,” said Duncan Lacroix, who plays Murtagh. “I think, personally, it’s kind of ramped up every season for me, so it’s gotten juicier and juicier. I think certainly the best work I’ve done on the show you’re gonna see next season.”
Last season saw Murtagh getting closer to Jamie’s Aunt Jocasta, a storyline given to Duncan Innes in the books, and also acting as leader of the local, revolutionary regulators. The Season 4 finale ended with Red Coats showing up at Jocasta’s door to deliver a letter to Jamie: It’s apparently time for him to prove his loyalty to the crown… by hunting down and killing Murtagh Fitzgibbons. #awkward
Sam Heughan (Jamie) doesn’t seem too worried about it: “It’s interesting because this character was obviously created by Diana,” he said in the panel, “but the writers have really gone with it and I think Duncan made Murtagh… he’s really brought him to life. We all want a Murtagh in our lives.”
“The reason we did bring Murtagh back is because we love Duncan so much, and we didn’t want to let him go,” added Outlander executive producer Maril Davis.
What did book author Diana Gabaldon have to say about this? “When I kill them, they stay dead,” said Gabaldon when asked which of her book characters she would bring back from the dead. “No offense to Murtagh or Duncan, he should have stayed dead.”
That being said, Gabaldon chose Murtagh, Angus, or Rupert as characters she would bring back if that were the kind of thing she did. “I liked Geillis,” Heughan said. Gabaldon’s answer: “Geillis… are you sure she’s dead?”