SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses Episode 7 (Titled “The Ballad of Roger Mac”) of Starz’s Outlander Season 5, as well as the book series on which it is based. Please proceed with caution if you have not yet viewed all available episodes and wish to avoid spoilers.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, the latest episode of Outlander saw the tragic demise of Murtagh (Duncan Lacroix). Then, the episode ended on an even more tragic note. However, it was something already predicted by fans of the Diana Gabaldon book series on which the Starz adaptation is based, according to Vanity Fair.
Episode 7 closed with the discovery that Roger MacKenzie (Richard Rankin) had been hanged. His wife, Brianna (Sophie Skelton), along with her father, Jamie (Sam Heughan), and mother, Claire (Caitriona Balfe), came across the horrific scene after searching for Roger.
Earlier in the episode, Roger had been tasked with visiting Murtagh in an effort to prevent the battle that would lead to huge casualties among the Regulators. During his trip there, he came across a distant relative of his, Morag MacKenzie (Elysia Welch). Stopping to chat with her, he gives her a brief hug, at which point her husband discovers them and accuses Roger of misconduct with his wife.
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This is very close to what happens in the Outlander books. After this misunderstanding, Roger is mistakenly hung but, according to Bustle, does not die. Thanks to an incorrect hanging procedure, he manages to survive. There are dire consequences for him regardless and this results in him being unable to speak.
Gabaldon acknowledges in the fifth book, The Fiery Cross, that she’s thankful to the doctor who gave her the “technical advice on how to hang someone, then cut his throat, and not kill him in the process.”
So, will this happen in the TV series?
According to Vanity Fair‘s article, it appears that Roger will survive. However, the wording used by Outlander‘s showrunner Matt Roberts is vague. He insists that Roger’s upcoming storyline will “give the book fans what they want, just not the way they expect it.”
This sentiment is also echoed by Heughan as he described the upcoming episode as being something “quite stylized” but also giving readers something that they are “not expecting.” Skelton also suggested that this might not be the end of the character when Outlander returns.
“You’ll see the family bringing the body down from the tree,” she told Collider.
“Brianna is frozen in her spot for quite a while until Claire calls her over while she’s trying to see if she can save what’s left.”
Once again, it not revealed outright that Roger survived his hanging. However, it gives fans hope while they wait for Episode 8.