Outlander is the perfect escapism in these times, and here's why

The release of Outlander season six comes at the best possible time.

In recent weeks, how many of us have wanted to step into an ancient stone circle and be flung somewhere else?

I’ve been doing just that. Vicariously, through Claire Randall Fraser.

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Season six of Outlander has just arrived on Starz, in timing that deserves a chef’s kiss.

Caitriona Balfe as Claire Fraser in Outlander (Starz)
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It arrives in a world hit by plague, war and a cost-of-living crisis. We have never needed it more.

Viewers can escape from all that with Claire as she tumbles – Alice in Wonderland-like – through the time-travelling rocks of Craigh na Dun.

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The first series is particularly good at scooping you up and carrying you away to the Scottish Highlands, and embroiling you in the messy affairs of its characters.

Don’t get me wrong, Outlander is far from light – it covers tough subjects from rape, torture, addiction and war.

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Caitriona Balfe wears a ribbon in support of Ukraine with Sam Heughan at the Season 6 premiere of Outlander in Hollywood (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)

But it’s almost comforting to worry about Claire and Jamie’s troubles (of which there are many) instead of those in the real world.

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I know for many, including myself, there is a sense of helplessness, dread and despair at everything going on.

The situation in Ukraine brings a daily onslaught of truly heart-breaking news, and the threat of world war.

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Outlander’s lead actors Sam Heughan and Caitríona Balfe have even spoken out against the Russian invasion.

“F*** you Putin”, wrote Balfe on Twitter after Russian troops bombed a maternity hospital in Mariupol.

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Heughan has called on western leaders to do more to help Ukraine, writing: “We are just letting this happen. Shame on us.”

It’s important to be aware of what’s going on, to speak out against it, and to do what we can to make change, whether that’s writing to your MP or donating to humanitarian appeals to help Ukraine.

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But, in times like these, we also all need a bit of escape and a bit of cheering up.

Like a bubble bath for the soul, I highly recommend getting snuggled up on the sofa and sticking on an Outlander episode.

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As the opening credits song goes, you will be transported "over the sea to Skye”.

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