Outlander Season 5, Episode 8 recap: Is Roger alive?

Brace yourselves, Outlander fans, this is an emotional one.

Outlander returns from its one-week hiatus with the answer to the burning question on all of our minds–is Roger Mac alive and well? And to answer that question, yes, he is alive. But well? Not so much. The episode picks up from where we left off, showing the body that everyone believes to be Roger’s taken down from the tree. It seems like a lifeless body, but once they removed the cover from his face, we learn that it is a barely alive Roger.

He’s taking short, quick breaths, but there is life in him still! Unfortunately, while Roger did survive, he’s not completely okay. He has PTSD from the whole ordeal, which is shown through silent film flashbacks of every moment.

The silent film touch was a stroke of genius on Outlander’s part and really exemplified how Roger could only convey his thoughts through that medium. For him, it was a silent film of horrors that temporarily robbed him of his voice.

But a little time jump shows Roger’s throat, and the surrounding muscles have healed up pretty nicely. However, he still can’t speak, or rather, it seems like he doesn’t want even to try.

He’s pretty messed up from everything still, and somewhere in his lost, quiet external appearance, Roger is seen questioning his very being and the worth of his life.

This week’s episode of Outlander is a heavy one for this reason. Throughout the episode, Roger experiences panic attacks, depressive episodes, and is very reserved with everyone. At some point, Brianna urges him to return to them. He does eventually, but the path to get there is unexpected.

And speaking of unexpected, guess which Outlander character from the past is back? None other than Ian–Jamie’s nephew! We last saw him in season 4 amidst the whole “rescue Roger” mission. Ian decided to hang back with the Mohawk tribe, but now he’s back, and he’s back for good. He’s lost his wife, and he’s emotionally grieving her loss.

This bodes well with Roger’s mental state, given he’s struggling in his own way too. The hope everyone has is Ian can help Roger, and maybe Roger will start talking again. It sort of does work, in its own weird way. But first, we must witness Roger standing on the edge of a cliff–dangerously close to the end of a cliff. It is incredibly worrisome, but given how Roger has been through the entire episode, it wasn’t unreasonable.

Luckily, instead of taking his own life, Roger pulls back from the edge after see Brianna’s face upon closing his eyes. It’s the one anchor he has to his life, and it’s strong enough to bring him back. Thankfully! This fleeting, profound moment, coupled with a conversation Roger has with Ian, is enough to bring our Roger back.

Brianna is more than relieved to see her husband back to normal, but it comes with a caveat. He’s no longer the man she once knew. Yes, he’s still madly in love with her, and things haven’t changed there, but something has sparked within him. I think this sudden emergence of courage will come in handy when we inevitably see the return of Stephen Bonnet.

Sadly, Outlander lost a beloved character in the last episode, and this week, we bid him farewell alongside Jocasta and Jamie. It’s a tough moment to process and get through, but even though Murtagh is gone, he is certainly not forgotten.

Did you enjoy this week’s episode of Outlander? Tell us your thoughts below!