Outlander Season 7 Just Solved a Big Season 6 Mystery

Outlander is back with its season 7 premiere, and the episode solves a lingering mystery, just not the one we expected!

Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe in Outlander Season 7
Photo: Starz

This recap contains Outlander season 7 episode 1 spoilers

Outlander Season 7 begins right where last season left off. Claire is awaiting her day in court to prove she did not kill Malva but rebelling colonists have ground the government in Wilmington to a halt. Jamie, with Ian’s assistance, is determined to reunite with Claire no matter what. Meanwhile, Roger’s seminary training exposes him to an unexpected moral conflict. Let’s recap all the events of the season premiere!

The Murderess

Jamie hasn’t heard from Claire in a long time, but he’s convinced she’s still alive because of their spiritual connection. He decides to go to Wilmington to bust Claire out of jail. Ian is accompanying Jamie and also has enlisted his Cherokee friends to guard the Ridge against thieves.

Claire’s jail cell is dark and creepy. Her cellmate Sadie Ferguson has been waiting at least a full month to answer a charge of forgery. The other inmates say that a trial hasn’t happened in two months because the judges are in hiding from the rebels. There’s no one to administer the trial nor the sentences. The jail attendant Mrs. Tolliver also has no idea about what will happen to the prisoners, as many of the men were called away to defend the British garrison at Fort Johnston. As the women are cleaning their area, some soldiers enter and ask if any of the women are healers. Claire says she’s the healer, while Sadie helps Claire by lying about what charge she’s facing. The soldiers tell her someone needs medical attention, but they do not tell them where they’re taking her. 

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God Helps Those Who Help Themselves

While Claire is still in custody, Bree follows Roger to his ministerial training assignment. The Reverend in charge wants Roger to assist the soldiers and prisoners of war by offering spiritual guidance and prayers. One of the soldiers tells Roger they need weapons, not the Bible. A prisoner of war asks Roger for advice on the battlefield and he replies by quoting Muhammad Ali’s famous adage about floating like a butterfly and stinging like a bee. Unfortunately for Roger, one of the men in this group is time traveler Wendigo Donner, who immediately recognizes the origin of the phrase. 

The mystery of the whistling prisoner who Claire heard in the prison back in Season 6 is finally solved! It was Donner, who had attempted to leave the 18th century because his mission to rally the natives to rise up against the white imperialists ended in disaster. While he could hear the stones, Donner could not successfully pass through. Roger says that you have to focus your mind on a destination but doesn’t know all the details about how exactly the stones work. 

Roger hears his story but he’s not sure about how he can help. Roger tells Bree about his encounter with Donner, and she’s firmly opposed to Roger helping him. She rightfully holds a grudge about Donner failing to stop Claire from getting raped and kidnapped in Season 5. Roger argues that it’s probable Donner froze out of fear and was threatened by the men. He recalls an incident where Stephen Bonnet threw a helpless infant overboard his ship. Bree believes Roger is going to help Donner, despite her rejections, and walks away from him.

Later on, Roger finds Bree to tell her he’s decided he’s not going to assist Donner in his escape plans. He says he’s going to pray for him to help himself get out of the situation. This way he’s fulfilling his ministerial mission without bias and also considering Brianna’s feelings. 

The Prison Ship

The soldiers row Claire out to a boat positioned in the waters off the Wilmington coastline. The ship is Governor Martin’s hideout from angry North Carolinians. Claire’s patient onboard is Mrs. Martin, his wife. Mrs. Martin is pregnant and is suffering from vomiting and sweating. Claire tells her ginger tea for nausea. During Claire’s exam, Mrs. Martin asks her about the rumors of witchcraft and killing Malva’s unborn child. Claire reassures her that she is innocent and the lies are the exact opposite of the Hippocratic Oath she swore. Mrs. Martin is nervous about this pregnancy because she lost 3 children to miscarriage or illness. Claire also reassures her that she’s also suffered a miscarriage.  The governor rejects Claire’s request to sail back to Wilmington to pick up more medical supplies. The British lost Fort Johnston which means they are in danger of losing control of the colonial government entirely. He orders her to stay on the ship until Mrs. Martin gives birth, but does send soldiers with Claire’s supply list. 

Back on shore, Claire’s letter is delivered to Tom Christie who starts to gather the requested materials. Jamie then finds Tom and asks him about Claire’s location as the jail was ruled out. He gives Jamie Claire’s letter, which reveals the location of the ship. The next morning Jamie rows out to meet the governor. Governor Martin rejects Jamie’s proposal to release Claire on bond, and then tells him to gather 200 men to assist the British Army in exchange for Claire’s release. Jamie leaves to figure out what his next step is. 

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Two Confessions

Tom Christie meets up with Jamie again, this time asking him for assistance. He says that he’s going to confess to murdering Malva so that Claire can be released from Gov. Martin’s custody. Jamie is, of course, frustrated that Christie didn’t offer assistance earlier, but he reassures Christie that if he had to give his eulogy he would say that Christie was an honorable but very stubborn man. 

Claire is finally free, but Tom has one more confession to make. After her release, she runs into Christie in town and agrees to meet with him. Christie tells her that his confession is going to be published in the newspaper for all to read. He admits Malva was actually his niece, not his biological daughter. Her mother Mona seduced his brother Edgar, then killed him. He believes Malva was a witch because she made a broth that caused the flux poisoning. Christie also reveals that he loves her, and has been nursing an unrequited crush for years. Later on, Claire tells Jamie about their meeting. Jamie believes that Christie may be confessing to cover up that Brown or another previously unidentified lover killed Malva. Jamie says that Claire should accept his confession as an act of love and forgiveness. Claire doesn’t want Christie to, but it’s too late to stop him.

A Returning Threat

Jamie encounters Brown unexpectedly. Brown says that his militia is ready to fight the Cherokee protecting the Ridge. He also insulted Claire, which prompted Jamie to strike him. The episode fades to black, right as the audience wants to know what happens next. 

Will Brown get the beatdown he rightfully deserves? Will Tom Christie hang for Malva’s murder? Does Wendigo Donner find an opportunity to escape? We’ll have to watch next week’s Outlander to find out!