SPOILERS!!! Amysterious illness will strike, and it looks like the devious Malva Christie (Jessica Reynolds) may be making her move, according to a promo for the upcoming sixth episode of Outlander Season 6!
The new, 30-second preview for episode 6, which is titled “The World Turned Upside Down,” shows a deadly disease spreading among the inhabitants of Fraser’s Ridge—and Claire (Caitriona Balfe) appears to be one of its victims. Malva takes the opportunity to try and seduce Jamie (Sam Heughan)—who we know won’t be tempted—but that doesn’t mean there might not be ramifications for the Frasers.
Season 6’s previous episode, “Give Me Liberty” (which premiered on Sunday, April 3) focused on Jamie’s shifting allegiances from the British crown to the colonists, who are meeting in secret and plotting rebellion. Viewers were excited by the return of fan favorite character Lord John Grey (David Berry), as well as Aunt Jocasta (Maria Doyle Kennedy), and a surprise appearance by Bonnie Prince Charlie (Andrew Gower) in flashback. Roger (Richard Rankin) gets a little too close to the widow Amy McCallum, which Malva also uses to her advantage. Finally, there’s another time traveler in town! But just who he is, is yet to be seen.
With the eight-episode Season 6 quickly wrapping up, we can expect things to come to a head with Malva soon—maybe even in the next episode. It does look to be a difficult one to watch, with an epidemic of illness and death of a “world turned upside down” that audiences may recognize only too well. Hopefully, the writers will offset this dark turn of events with something to keep our spirits up… maybe? We can only hope.
Is there an Outlander Season 6 episode 6 promo preview?
Yes! The trailer for “The World Turned Upside Down” opens with Roger asking after some missing villagers. Claire, Brianna (Sophie Skelton), Malva, and Lizzie stop by their cabin to look in on them, only to see vultures circling and a dreadful smell coming from the place. “Something’s dead nearby,” Malva says. They find the couple deceased, and Claire says she’s not sure why. “Don’t touch your faces,” she warns, clearly suspecting a contagious disease.
We then see a line of newly filled graves. While standing in front of them, Jamie tells Claire, “You look a bit like a ghost, Sassenach,” before she faints into his arms. “She’s burning up,” Brianna says. Jamie sits by her bedside, clearly worried for her. Has she caught the same disease that’s affected the others? Malva then brings Jamie a drink by the fire. “You seem a fine gentleman to me,” she says. Ugh, Malva, he’s clearly married and in love! What are you up to?
Through her haze of sickness, Claire sees Malva touching Jamie’s cheek. This girl clearly has a nefarious plan, but what that is, we don’t know. Jamie best watch his back, though, as he is clearly part of it.
What happened on Outlander Season 6 episode 5?
“Give Me Liberty” heightened the tension around the coming war, with Jamie finally taking a side. We didn’t see Fergus (César Domboy) or Ian (John Bell), who were the focus of episodes 3 and 4 respectively. But episode 5 did mark a return for some favorite characters—including a surprise appearance by Bonnie Prince Charlie. The teaser scene before the opening credits took viewers back to Scotland, June 1746, two months after the Scottish defeat at the Battle of Culloden. A woman, who we later find out is real-life Scottish heroine Flora MacDonald, escorts the prince in disguise, talking her way past Redcoats onto a boat bound “over the sea to Skye,” as Outlander’s theme song goes, an island from which he will make his escape to France. We love throwbacks like this because it helps tie together the different times and places the show has gone. But what this scene has to do with Season 6, we don’t yet know. Interestingly, this week’s interpretation of the theme song is unique to this episode, as it’s sung in Gaelic over scenes of Charles’s fateful boat trip.
Back in America in the early 1770s, Jamie and Claire are in Wilmington for an event for Flora MacDonald, who really did end up settling in North Carolina. But as in real life, Flora was on the loyalist side, backing the British crown. Jamie meets with a leader of the Sons of Liberty, a rebel group he’s considering joining. At the fancy party for Flora, Jamie and Claire meet old friends: Lord John Grey, with whom they have a somewhat tense exchange—maybe because the governor has asked Lord John to spy on Jamie and see where his loyalties lie—and Aunt Jocasta. They also meet Flora herself.
In a humorous scene, Claire, Aunt Jocasta, and Flora enjoy smoking some hemp flower, which Claire says will help Jocasta’s eye pain and Flora’s nerves for her speech. Claire, though, can’t resist sneaking a little sniff of ether as well, though. In her speech, Flora professes peace among the colonists and the crown. Lord John later talks with Jamie, revealing that the governor is suspicious of him; Jamie is clearly torn about how to address his changing allegiance with his old friend. But, they are interrupted with news of a riot in town: The printer who Jocasta tasked with printing flyers for Flora’s event is being attacked. Jamie and Lord John rush in to protect his shop, making it seem as though Jamie is a loyalist after all.
Jamie confronts Aunt Jocasta about backing Flora’s event. In addition, she’s bought Fergus a print shop in New Bern, supposedly because he missed his work at the shop in Edinburgh; but, as Jamie accuses her, really to print loyalist material for her. Even more importantly, we learn that Fergus and Marsali (Lauren Lyle) are planning to relocate to New Bern—a huge loss for viewers, as we don’t want to see them leave Fraser’s Ridge!
Jamie and Lord John have it out, with Jamie revealing he’s siding with the colonists; Lord John doesn’t really understand their cause, but accepts that he and Jamie will once again find themselves on opposite sides. Lord John tells Jamie the British soldiers know about the Sons of Liberty meeting that evening and will ambush them to arrest the members. But when Jamie shows up to the meeting, he’s told he’s not welcome because he defended the printer. Jamie makes a good argument, though: That freedom should be about being able to express opinions, no matter if others disagree, without fear of violence or suppression. He proves his loyalty by warning them about the soldiers, and the men leave before the British arrive.
Meanwhile, Roger is spending too much time with the widow Amy McCallum, helping her finish her cabin. Although Brianna doesn’t really think Roger’s up to anything, she’s concerned that Mistress McCallum is coming to rely on him too heavily instead of looking for a new husband—and that she might be the one who cast a love spell in the woods, using rocks in a circle and human fingers (eww!), hoping for Roger’s affections. (But who do we know whose mother was supposedly a witch? Hmm…)
Later, Roger catches Malva in a passionate exchange with another villager, Obadiah Henderson. Malva shows her true colors for the first time, telling Roger if he reveals to her father what he saw, she’ll say she saw him kissing the widow. When Roger denies that ever happened, she says people will believe her. Wow, Malva. Just wow. Roger holds his tongue about Malva, but asks single Mr. Henderson to start looking in on the widow instead. Brianna then reveals to Roger she’s pregnant. Congrats to the couple!
Then, in one of the eeriest scenes this season, we see that Malva has hidden a decomposing body in a hut (where did she get this guy?) and is cutting off his fingers. So she was the one casting the love spell—but for who?
In the last scenes of the episode, Claire hears someone whistling a modern tune—she blames it on the wind, but then we see someone in a jail cell definitely whistling the song, and holding a stolen gem. As Outlander fans know, gems are usually required for time travel—but who is this time traveler, and where is he planning to go?
Are there any Outlander Season 6 episode 6 spoilers?
Book readers will know that there is definitely an epidemic of dysentery coming to the show—and indeed, Starz‘s one-line synopsis of the episode reads, “A dysentery epidemic strikes the Ridge.” Dysentery is, in fact, an extremely contagious bacterial disease. Let’s hope Claire stocked up on her homemade antibiotics.
However (spoiler ahead!), those who’ve read the books will also know Claire may or may not have the same illness—someone (who could it be?) may have taken the opportunity to make Claire sick, maybe even with the intention to kill, so it would seem as though she perished in the epidemic. Only Doctor Claire herself would probably be able to tell the difference, after all.
As for Malva, who tried to come on to Jamie in the preview, her character’s downward turn seems a shame, as she began with such promise: a willing apprentice and strong young woman facing off against her repressive father. “We start off with a very innocent, eager to learn, she’s got the world in front of her,” Reynolds said in a behind-the-scenes Starz video from the set. “She thinks this is her chance to blossom and become a woman potentially like Claire—and then lots of stuff gets in the way and gets in the mix.”
Maybe we shouldn’t speak too ill of Malva: After all, she does clearly have a very dysfunctional family and endures beatings from her abusive father, Tom Christie (Mark Lewis Jones). So maybe her actions with Jamie that we see in the episode 6 preview—and what book readers know of her further plan—really stems from desperation and trauma. Reynolds has described her character’s storyline as tragic as well. “I think ultimately there is a lot of tragedy,” Reynolds told TV Line. Malva’s “had a rough past, but there are moments where she does get carried away, and maybe isn’t always the most morally sound person…[things] get a little bit creepy, a little bit weird.” A little bit?
Outlander book author Diana Gabaldon gave Parade.com a clue to Malva’s character as well when she told us the meaning behind her name. “I found the name entertaining–especially because of the Latin root, meaning “evil/bad,” Gabaldon said. Tune in to “The World Turned Upside Down” on Sunday, April 10, to see what Malva has in store.