Spoilers for Episode 3 of Outlander Season 3. Outlander fans know from the Season 2 finale that Frank Randall is dead in 1968, but that doesn't mean they were prepared to see Frank die on Outlander during the Season 3 episode "All Debts Paid." But what else could have followed that massive blowout between Claire and Frank other than his death? After Frank reveals that he wants to get a divorce from Claire and move to England with their daughter Brianna and his lover Sandy, he ends up in a car accident where he dies. It's soap opera levels of drama. And his death comes hot on the heels of Black Jack's death at the Battle of Culloden. With his two characters officially very dead on the show, that could mean no more of the extremely talented actor Tobias Menzies in Outlander.
While Frank is dead at this point in the chronology of the show, there's a chance he could still be present on the TV series through his letters. As the Season 2 finale showed, he continued his correspondence with Reverend Wakefield after he moved to America with Claire and that holds true for the book series that the TV show is based on as well. For example, in the fourth book of Diana Gabaldon's series, Drums Of Autumn, (spoilers!) Roger finds a letter to the reverend that gives Frank's side of the story in his marriage to Claire. Another letter of significant importance comes up in the eighth — and latest — Outlander book, Written In My Own Heart's Blood. For what it's worth, Black Jack also appears in other Outlander books after his death, but let's focus on the far superior Randall for now.
Frank is also a character — not just through letters — in the Outlander novella, A Leaf On The Wind Of All Hallows, which tells the real story of how Roger's parents died in WWII. So while it will depend on how closely the Starz series continues to follow Gabaldon's books, there are opportunities to use Frank in flashbacks. However, Menzies is a busy actor and with both of his Outlander characters being dead, it may be time for him to move on to other things rather than make himself available to show up in an episode every now and again, right?
Well, before Season 3 premiered, Menzies pretty much confirmed he won't be returning in the Variety podcast, "Remote Controlled." When he was asked, "It's your goodbye tour, right?" He said, "Yeah, both characters are burned off in this season," and discussed how he'll miss the show. Menzies also said that Frank and Claire's marriage is only covered in the first three episodes of Season 3 and later noted that he couldn't speak to later episodes in the season. That means Menzies most likely won't be showing up in any other Season 3 episodes now that Frank is dead.
If the loss of Menzies upsets you — even though the loss of his character Black Jack is the exact opposite of upsetting — Outlander executive producer and creator Ron Moore gave some hope about the potential of Menzies returning to TVGuide.com at the ATX Television Festival in Austin back in June. "You never know. We've talked about it," Moore said. "There's always the possibility of flashing back and revisiting him in either role if we had a reason to. Diana [Gabaldon] in subsequent books kind of touches back to Frank for various reasons. We might do that. It really depends on how we break that in subsequent years."
While Menzies was pulling double duty on Outlander, he managed to make time for his recurring roles of Edmure Tully on Game Of Thrones and Dr. Harries on Catastrophe. He also was in the miniseries The Night Manager and some films, including Underworld: Blood Wars, so he has been known to balance quite a few projects at the same time. So although Menzies already has other shows and movies in the works now — like the AMC series The Terror and the horror film Carmilla — don't completely rule out the possibility that Frank Randall could return in a flashback.
And even if that day doesn't come, fans of Outlander will make it through knowing that Frank's death brings Claire and Jamie one step closer to reuniting.