Diana Gabaldon On The Casting Of The Christies In 'Outlander' Season 6 — They're "Exactly Right"

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Diana Gabaldon On The Casting Of The Christies In 'Outlander' Season 6 — They're "Exactly Right"

The Christie cavalcade is coming to Fraser's Ridge, and while Jamie and Claire may have mixed to very bad feelings about this, there is a silver lining to their arrival. In an interview with The Dipp, author Diana Gabaldon approved of the actors playing the Christies in Outlander next season. Now, that doesn't mean anyone — neither the woman who created them nor the audience — will approve of all that the Christies do in Season 6, but at least they have Gabaldon's blessing.

Sam Heughan had already teased that fellow Ardsmuir inmate Tom Christie and his daughter would be coming to the Ridge. But the recent Christie casting announcement revealed that Mark Lewis Jones, Jessica Reynolds, and Alexander Vlahos would be the ones behind the roles of Tom, Malva, and Allan Christie, respectively.

There may be other new characters that haven't been officially announced by the Starz team yet (people like Major MacDonald, Bobby Higgins, and Amy McCallum for instance?) but when discussing the new actors, Gabaldon says, "All of them I've seen have been really great." She calls out Lewis Jones and Reynolds in their roles of Tom and Malva in particular. "Those two actors are just exactly right for their parts and doing so well," she says. "And they have wonderful chemistry with Sam and Caitriona [Balfe]."

Although book readers know all about the many many predicaments that the Christies put Jamie and Claire through in A Breath of Snow and Ashes (even if you blocked a few out), Gabaldon can't confirm which storylines will make the cut for Season 6. (She also hasn't seen all of the scripts yet.) But she did refer to one small scene that she saw in the "dailies" (unedited footage) that will do a lot to establish the relationship between Claire, Jamie, and Tom.

"I saw the first daily including [Tom], which was one where Claire is doing surgery to repair a gash in his hand and Jamie comes in to watch," Gabaldon says. "It's a brief scene, but fairly intense because of blood, stuff like that."

(In the Season 6 behind-the-scenes video that Starz shared in March, there was some footage of Claire working on Tom's hand, but notably without Jamie.)

Beyond saying the show "stuck very close to the source material" (I can hear the faraway cheers from the book readers already), she says she was "totally amazed" by Lewis Jones's interpretation of the new character. "He's very self-contained," she says. "It is just wonderful. There's sparks in every direction."

In the scene from A Breath of Snow and Ashes, Tom doesn't appreciate Jamie seeing him in a weak and vulnerable position. There's a bit of a leadership struggle between them (something Heughan and Lewis Jones have both hinted at) and they had a fraught relationship in their past at Ardsmuir, which Claire knows all about.

"Having seen that one scene, I found him on Twitter and sent him a direct message. And I said, 'Man, you have got Tom Christie cold,'" Gabaldon tells me. "Because he did. You could tell just from that one scene he understood who this guy is."

Whenever Season 6 comes out, it will be important to remember that the actors behind the Christies are nothing like their onscreen counterparts. But hey, isn't it reassuring to know that they are going to be very good at playing bad?

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Images: Starz

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