Why did Donner and Otter Tooth's journey go so wrong in the Outlander books?

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Outlander Season 1 -- Courtesy of STARZ

Breaking down Donner and Otter Tooth’s journey in the Outlander books

During the Outlander books, we learn Donner and Otter Tooth were two men with the same goal. At least they thought they were. Along with three other men, they journeyed to the past, but things went terribly wrong.

It’s not clear whether this is something that will come up in the show during Outlander Season 6. The discussions about Donner’s journey to the past may be completely missed out. He’s really only needed for the fire at the Big House storyline, and even then he could technically be omitted if needed for the sake of time.

We’re likely only going to get the details from the books and the official companion books. This is why I do recommend reading the books. There’s a lot the show just can’t possibly fit in. For the sake of a show storyline, the writing works. However, if you want to get to know the characters more, you need the book details.

Why Donner and Otter Tooth went to the past

In the books, the two travel to the past with three other men. Their aim is to prevent the destruction of the Native clans. They think that helping the British win the Revolutionary War is the best way to do that. They need the Native tribes of the time to join with the British to take down the Patriot army.

Except, not all of them had the same intentions. They all needed to think of the same thing with their hearts. And Roger pointed out that there was no guarantee he, Brianna, and Jemmy would end up in the up in the same place if they didn’t bind themselves together with rope during Outlander Season 5, Episode 11.

The men wouldn’t have bounded together with rope. Instead, they traveled through separately and without gems to steer them through. While Donner wanted to head to the 1760s in time for the Revolutionary War, Otter Tooth had other plans. He wanted to head back further in time to prevent the Native tribes from being wiped out by the Colonists.

And this is where things went terribly wrong. Otter Tooth went back too far with a different plan, two men didn’t make it through (they did go missing, which suggests they’re trapped in the stones somewhere), and one man died. Donner was on his own and all he could do was try to fit in to survive. It’s no wonder he took steps just to protect himself and find a way back through the stones!

In short, things went wrong because they didn’t have the same goals. And not all of them made it through time. Without all being together, they couldn’t offer the advice they had and it was all about survival.

Next: Outlander theories: How Claire and Laoghaire could be related

What have you thought about for the side characters in Outlander? What questions do you have as you get to know the various characters? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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