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How 'Doctor Who' Inspired 'Outlander': A Journey Through Time & Space

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How 'Doctor Who' Inspired 'Outlander': A Journey Through Time & Space

Any Outlander fan worth their salt knows that 18th-century, kilt-wearing Scottish Highlander Jamie Fraser can do a lot of things... but time travel isn't one of them. Yet, once upon a time in TV land, there was an 18th-century, kilt-wearing Scottish Highlander named Jamie who could time (and space) travel. It was this Jamie on Doctor Who who inspired Outlander author Diana Gabaldon when creating her novel and iconic character.

Gabaldon reveals how the British sci-fi series influenced Outlander in the very first answer on her website's general FAQs page. "Well, I happened to see a Dr. Who rerun in a weak-minded moment, and was taken by a minor character — a young Scotsman from 1745, who appeared in his kilt," Gabaldon writes. "'Well, that's fetching,' I said. 'Yeah, why not? Scotland, eighteenth century.'"

Outlander fans know all about the appeal of a man in a kilt. And the kilt that caught Gabaldon's eye in Doctor Who belonged to the character Jamie McCrimmon, who was the "companion" (the Doctor Who-approved term) of the time-traveling alien Doctor on his adventures.

Gabaldon has created a legacy with her character Jamie Fraser. But classic Doctor Who did have a hand in launching the intricate Outlander universe. Let's go back in time — whether through the stones or with the TARDIS — to see how it all began.

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