Why were the initials cut from Outlander Season 3?

Photo credit: Outlander/Starz Image acquired via Starz Media Room
Photo credit: Outlander/Starz Image acquired via Starz Media Room /

Eagle-eyed fans recently spotted the initials carved into Claire and Jamie’s hands in Outlander Season 3 deleted footage. However, none of this was included in the series and showrunner Ron D. Moore explains why.

Many Outlander fans were upset that Claire and Jamie’s initial carving scene wasn’t included in Season 2. “Dragonfly in Amber” has a beautiful moment in the final scenes, as Jamie sends Claire back through time to safety. They carve their initials into each others’ hands, so they have something to remember each other by forever.

Showrunner Ron D. Moore admits that while it wasn’t included in Outlander Season 2, there’s always been an intention to include it elsewhere. Season 3 was one of the planned spots, and that’s why there are scenes in the deleted footage from the season based on “Voyager.”

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So, why didn’t the initials make the cut? Well, there’s a scene where the two carve their initials. In the end, it wasn’t something the showrunner was happy with, so the scenes ended up on the cutting room floor. He didn’t explain why the scenes were cut out; just that they didn’t work.

Since the carving scene was cut, the initials had to be cut out of other scenes. This didn’t happen with those that weren’t used, but these deleted scenes were included in the DVD and Blu-Ray. The eagle-eyed fans quickly spotted them, because epic fans will always look out for these small inclusions.

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Caitriona Balfe admits that she was shocked the scenes were cut, and not just cut from Outlander Season 3. She admits this was a moment that worked perfectly where it was (any “Dragonfly in Amber” fan will tell you the same) and it’s hard to add that elsewhere. It’s hard to make the scene fit elsewhere, but so iconic and important to fans that the showrunners want to make it work.

"It’s sort of in a really organic place in the book and it sort of fits where it was supposed to be. I think it’s difficult sometimes when you’re trying to shoehorn something into another moment, but you know, it’s also a fan favorite.–Caitriona Balfe"

However, Balfe did admit that it wasn’t entirely surprising the scene was cut. So many scenes are filmed and not all will make it to the finished piece.


Sam Heughan has said that he was happy the deleted footage was there. It’s proof to the fans that the showrunners are trying to add it in, even if it’s in a different part of the story.

"I think I was quite excited for the fans to see that because they wanted it from before, but you know, it may make an appearance somewhere else.–Sam Heughan"

While fans may not be completely happy with the decision to change Outlander Season 2, all that is now in the past. There’s no point continuing the argument of “well, they should have done it then” since nobody can go back in time. The showrunners are trying to add it in and that’s why many spotted it in the Season 3 deleted scenes.

Next: Could Outlander Season 4 bore the Claire and Jamie fans?

Did you spot the initials in the deleted footage? Where do you think it could work moving forward? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Outlander Season 4 is currently filming. Like Claire and Jamie on Facebook for more updates about the series.