Among the many secrets of the world- Stonehenge, the lost city of Atlantis, Justin Bieber’s tattoos– foremost for me is WHERE IS MURTAGH? Seriously, where is this beautiful man?
I make no secret of loving one Murtagh FitzGibbons Fraser. He’s a bit surly but also a bit of a softy. He has an awesome beard. He loves Jamie and respects Claire. He has a thing for French maids. He’s the best third wheel ever.
But Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ, where is he? Since Murtagh died in the novels at Culloden it’s really anyone’s guess what the writers plan to do with him. So allow me, if you will, to divulge my top five theories:
(Spoiler alert- there are some references to the novels at the end of this article but I will warn you first)
1. He is living as a free man somewhere in the American Colonies
Having finished his indentured servitude, Murtagh is perhaps working a respectable trade and has set up a reasonable life for himself somewhere in the American Colonies. This could set up a storyline where Jamie and Claire run into him by happenstance (let’s go into this blacksmith…OMG IT’S MURTAGH!) or they could seek him out intentionally having learned of his freedom. I would gladly watch a whole “let’s go find Murtagh” episode. Just saying.
2. He is still indentured or imprisoned
My least favorite theory. But if Murtagh tried to run away or broke the law at any time during his servitude he could very well still be indentured or imprisoned. Would this set up a plot for Jamie to potentially rescue him? Hmmm…hard to say. It would be a major deviation from the novels to add in so many new storylines, but anything is possible in the writer’s room. And I would watch it.
3. He is elsewhere within the British Empire.
We know the prisoners of Ardsmuir were supposed to be sent to the American Colonies but that certainly isn’t a guarantee that Murtagh is there. Considering the enormous reach of English colonization in the eighteenth century, Murtagh could be in the West Indies, Australia, Africa, or India. Admittedly, this is probably less likely considering the majority of our story next season will be in North America and production constraints likely wouldn’t allow for too many extra locales. But can we petition now for a “Murtagh in Australia” spin-off?
Edited: someone has pointed out that Murtagh in Australia is pretty unlikely considering English colonization didn’t begin until the late 1780s. My apologies! I’m still holding out hope for that spin-off, though
4. He is back in Scotland
The American colonies of the 1700s- rife with mosquitoes, malaria, and humidity- might not be a place Murtagh wants to hang around. His servitude complete, he hightails it back to Scotland and we find him grumpily and happily at home amid the heather. Again, I find this a bit less likely considering the whole purpose of keeping him alive is (presumably) to have him reunited with Jamie and Claire. We need to get this band back together, ASAP. Which brings me to my final theory…
***SPOILER ALERT FOR THIS LAST BIT. SCROLL DOWN IF YOU NEED TO***
5. He has become another character.
Or, rather, another character has become Murtagh. My personal speculation is that the writers will eliminate the character of Duncan Innes and have Murtagh fulfill that role instead. Having both of them, in my mind, would be superfluous as they serve similar character functions. Plus, a Murtagh-Jacosta match would fit somewhat neatly into his history— Murtagh did love Ellen MacKenzie Fraser and the novels allude to how much Jacosta and Ellen physically resemble each other. If my suspicions hold true I think we might see Murtagh as early as Episode 401, with him present at the hanging and his past provided to us through some narrative exposition.
Okay, spoiler bit over. So what does everyone think? To what theory or theories are you subscribing? Do you think Jamie already knows where he is? Where do you think Murtagh will fit into Season 4? Wherever you are, Murtagh, the story will only be improved upon your return. Hurry back, you gorgeous, grumpy man.