Outlander fans itching for more of Roger and Brianna finally got their wish!
As much as we love Claire and Jamie, there’s no denying we’ve been looking forward to spending more time with Roger and Brianna in the 1970s. The good news is this week’s episode of Outlander serves as a great jumping off point with regards to where Roger and Brianna find themselves at the beginning of season 4.
When we first check back in with Roger, he’s in the midst of selling off his house just before heading back to America where he’s been invited to play at a Scottish festival. It’s a huge honor, but we all know it’s the cherry on top of the proverbial cake that is getting the chance to spend more time with Brianna.
It’s been lovely to see snapshots of their blossoming romance over the course of the past few seasons, but one of the best parts about the “The False Bride” as an episode is is the way it allows the viewer to spend some good, quality time with Roger and Brianna. It’s nice to see how the pair play off of each other — even in the smaller moments like during the road trip while they’re exchanging bants over a chocolate malt and some fries.
It’s a trend that carries on into the scenes at the Scottish festival where it’s incredibly clear that Brianna and Roger are pretty infatuated with one another.
Unfortunately, the honeymoon phase wears off quite abruptly when things start heating up in Brianna’s cabin. Roger and Brianna may care deeply for each other, but it soon becomes clear that they envision their relationship escalating at completely different speeds.
Things come to a head when Roger makes the spontaneous decision to propose and Brianna says no.
When we caught up with stars Sophie Skelton (Brianna) and Richard Rankin (Roger) at the Outlander press junket in Los Angeles earlier this month, the actors gave us some great insight into the mindset of their characters at the beginning of this season.
“At Christmas they were talking about making new traditions and they seemed quite settled and happy with each other. You think everything is all hunky dory with them but unfortunately time [and] distance can take its toll on a relationship,” Rankin told Hypable. “You maybe start to become a little bit unsure of whether or not Roger and Brianna’s relationship is gonna survive that kind of test. I think it’s a great place to pick them up because there are challenges to that aspect of them which I think only get heightened as we continue forward in season 4.”
We’ll definitely have to keep watching if we want to find out how Roger and Brianna’s story arc ends this season. Though our favorite present day couple meet up again the next day during the burning of the stag, they don’t really leave things on the best of terms.
When Brianna explains that she’s not sure if marriage is for her, Roger doesn’t take it as well as she’d hoped he would.
In past seasons, we’ve seen Brianna struggle to come to terms with Claire’s complicated history when it comes to Frank and Jamie, but one thing the show hasn’t touched on much is the way the truth directly affects Brianna’s outlook on her own life.
Though the conversation between her and Roger during the last night of the Scottish festival is brief, it gives us a great insight into Brianna’s headspace and where she’s coming from.
As for Roger, while it’s definitely old fashioned of him to put so much weight on Brianna’s virginity, one thing that is understandable is his disappointment over the knowledge that Brianna may never want the happy ending he envisions for them.
When we spoke with Skelton, she revealed that one of the things she enjoys most about the way things play out in The False Bride is the fact that it offers up opportunity for viewers to see things from the perspective of both characters.
“One thing that’s really cool about that scene is that neither one of them is right or wrong. you can kind of agree or disagree with both of their points of view and I think their heads are just in very different places— both for very legitimate reasons,” said Skelton.
Additionally, Skelton also pointed out that while Roger and Bree don’t see eye to eye on the matter, their reason for lashing out at one another is born of a common thread.
“I think both of their arguments come from a very loving place. I think they love each other a lot— they’re just not very good at saying it. I think it’s almost a very defensive thing and they both feel very hurt in the moment and just don’t voice that very well,” explained Skelton. “They’ve both just been rejected in some way. Brianna has sort of put herself out there as a virgin, as a woman in quite a vulnerable way, and Roger has tried to handle that like a gentleman and tried to therefore take the next step to which Brianna says no. Obviously he feels from a very vulnerable place.”
If you’re curious as to where Roger and Brianna go from here, you’ll have to tune in to the rest of the season. Both Rankin and Skelton are keeping tight lipped on the finer details of what’s coming next for their characters collectively and separately.
That being said, they did leave us with a few minor teases to hold us over until the next time we catch up with Brianna and Roger.
First and foremost, fans can rest easy in knowing that we will get to spend more time with both characters over the course of Outlander season 4.
“This is kind of the one we’ve been waiting for,” said Skelton. “There’s a lot of Brianna and Roger that we’ve sort of held back on, and this is kind of where the characters will come into their own.”
Finally, if this episode taught us anything, it’s that Roger is incredibly proud of his MacKenzie roots. And if we know one thing about the MacKenzies, it’s that there are some very distinct personality traits that tend to run in the family.
“As the season moves forward, you start to see that MacKenzie blood is part of what makes Roger, Roger,” teased Rankin. “As he starts to get put through the ringer a little bit you start to see a very different side of him. There’s an evolution to that character that hearkens back to his ancestry and where he came from — it’s a side to him he never would have imagined.”