Outlander: 5 Things That Have Changed After The Pilot (& 5 That Stayed The Same)
After some tumultuous and chaotic storytelling, season 5 of Outlander ended with a new equilibrium for our favorite time travelers. Brianna and Roger stayed, Claire and Jamie were reunited, and Marsali made a big decision that could have drastic repercussions in the next season.
It seems like all characters underwent huge growth this season. Especially Jamie and Claire, who faced more hardships than ever. Still, it's nice to see the love and trust they have for one another continues to flourish. It's strange to think there was a time where they hated one another. Even though they still fight like cats and dogs, a lot has changed since the pilot episode...
10 Changed: Claire and Frank's Relationship
The biggest change that has occurred since the pilot is Claire's marital status. As fans know, Claire wasn't always married to Jamie and she didn't live in the 18th century. When the show started, Claire was actually married to Frank and was starting her second honeymoon.
Skip forward five seasons and everything has changed. Frank and Claire's relationship fell apart, he died in a car accident, and Claire is happily married to Jamie. Together, they have three children, Faith, Brianna, and Fergus.
9 Same: Claire's Passion For Medicine
One aspect that fans are glad hasn't changed is Claire's passion for medicine. When fans first met Claire, she revealed she had been a WWII nurse. They also saw that she had an innate need to help others when they were suffering or in pain — including her enemies.
Since then, her compassionate and selfless nature has remained as strong as ever. Not only did Claire go on to become Clan MacKenzie's healer but she also became one of the best surgeons in the country. Now, Claire uses her expertise to advance the medical science of the 18th century.
8 Changed: Gratuitous Violence
When fans saw the excessive war wounds and swordplay in the pilot, they knew that lots of bloodshed and violence awaited. However, no one expected it could be so graphic that they felt the need to turn it off. While the writers have handled storylines, such as Jamie's rape ordeal, with care, some fans have complained that the show can be gratuitous.
A few examples? Mary Hawkins being assaulted and dismissed; Claire being forced to sleep with the King to ensure Jamie's release. Even Claire's recent violation at the hands of Lionel and his men were too much to stomach. While this disturbing violence had been prevalent to the plot at first, many are questioning whether it is now...
7 Same: Claire's Fiery Personality
Another part of Claire's personality that has been consistent since the pilot is her fiery personality — which fans love. When Claire was taken by the MacKenzies, she made it clear that she wasn't your typical damsel in distress. She got on the wrong side of the Scotsmen because she was loud, rebellious, and forthright.
Skip forward five years (or twenty-five in Claire's case) and her passionate nature is still present. Although she still faces sexism and misogyny daily, Claire refuses to allow herself to be backed into a corner, and stands up for what's right.
6 Changed: Not Always In Scotland
One of the most obvious changes to the series has to be the setting. In the pilot episode, it was clear that the show would primarily be set in Scotland. Since Claire had fallen through the stones while she was in Inverness, fans assumed that she would have to remain in the country if she wanted to get back to Frank.
Since then, Claire and her family have learned that there are more time portals across the globe. Although they had a home in France, Claire and Jamie decided to settle in America, where they have become the proprietors of Fraser's Ridge.
5 Same: Jamie's Trust In Claire
When Jamie and Claire first met in the pilot, it was far from sunshine and roses. Jamie had helped keep her hostage and Claire was skeptical of his kindness. However, she was quick to recognize an ally in Jamie when she told him of a potential ambush, and he believed her.
It seems strange that Jamie would instantly place his trust in a stranger but maybe this just adds to their love story. If fans decide to do a rewatch, they will be able to see that Jamie believes everything Claire tells him — no matter how fanciful it may be.
4 Changed: Relationship With MacKenzie-Frasers
While Jamie and Claire's relationship improved after the pilot, so did her relationship with the other members of Clan MacKenzie. When Claire first met Angus and Rupert, they were hostile with her. Angus didn't like the fact that she ordered him around and Rupert was skeptical of Claire because of her heritage.
However, this soon changed once Claire married Jamie. Not only did she earn their respect as a healer but she also proved her loyalty to the clan. Claire was devastated when they died.
3 Same: Meaningful Sex Scenes
Although there is an increasing amount of gratuitous violence in Outlander, the writers have ensured that the positive sides to sex are explored too. For instance, in the pilot episode, Claire and Frank were seen rendezvousing in different places as they began their second honeymoon. Straight away, fans could tell how much they loved one another.
In the seasons that followed, the writers continued to show that sex wasn't always used as a power tool. It cemented the feelings each character had for one another. This was the case for Jamie and Claire, Marsali and Fergus, even Roger and Brianna's (to some extent).
2 Changed: Opening Credits
One of the more notable changes to the show has to be the opening credits. In the pilot episode, the opening title featured motifs and images of Scotland. It was also overlaid by Raya Yarbrough's version of "The Skye Boat Song." As time went on, fans came to realize that the opening credits hinted to the viewers of what could expect from the season.
This was also proven in the later seasons when the opening titles continued to change. In season 2, fans would have seen a Parisian theme; season 3 showed images of the Caribbean; season 4 showed hints of America and the Natives; and season 5 foreshadowed the Battle of Alamance. It's why fans should never skip them...
1 Same: Murtagh Fraser's Loyalty
If there was one person who remained steadfast and true since the pilot, it was Murtagh. Straight from the get-go, fans were able to see that he was one of the bravest and most loyal men they would ever meet. He also appeared to be a respectable gentleman, coming to Claire's rescue when she was accosted by Jack Randall.
As the show progressed, Murtagh quickly became a fan-favorite character. Not only did they love his caring and protective nature but they also enjoyed his relationship with Jamie. It was fitting that he lost his life protecting the ones he loved.