What's the plot of Outlander season 5?
Loosely based off of The Fiery Cross, the fifth book in the Outlander series, Season 5 picks up in North Carolina where the action of Season 4 left off. What sets the book apart from others in the series is that it doesn't actually involve any time travel -- rather, the entire book is spent in the American colonies from the years 1770 until 1772. The novel is set against the backdrop of the Regulator Movement in North Carolina, a rebellion that was a precursor to the American Revolution. As Claire puts her modern medical knowledge to use in Fraser's Ridge, Jamie must balance protecting his family and maintaining his land.
Notably, Jamie's also currently on the side of Redcoats. "He's actually on the opposite side of where his allegiance really is and his loyalty lies, but he knows he needs to do it," actor Sam Heughan told Parade. "He needs to do it for his family and for his tenants. He has to secure this land and make it a safe place for them, so he goes in league with the British. For Jamie, that's a pretty hard thing to do."
Further complicating the matter is the fact that Murtagh, who doesn't survive until this point in the books, is still alive. Moreover, Jamie's been tasked with hunting him down. "Personally, it's kind of ramped up every season for me," actor Duncan Lacroix said at the show's 2019 New York Comic Con panel. "I think the best work I've done is in this season."
Meanwhile, Brianna and Roger are still dealing with the fallout of the events of Season 4, with Roger and Jamie's relationship still strained after Jamie beat Roger thinking he was the one who had raped Brianna. If the books are anything to go by, it doesn't look like Roger is going to get a break this season either -- per Vulture, at one point in the novel, he gets hanged (don't worry, he's okay). Brianna has to deal with her own trials as well. Executive producer Maril Davis told fans at the show's New York Comic Con panel that Brianna is still "dealing with the ramifications of [Bonnet's] attack" during Season 5. In The Firey Cross, Bonnet returns and attempts to kidnap Brianna and her son, leading to a standoff.
Past just summarizing The Firey Cross in its entirety (not even necessarily a productive task, given that the continuity of the series has already somewhat diverged from the books), there's not much else we know about Season 5. At the series' NYCC panel, Gabaldon did share that her favorite scene in the upcoming season included the phrase "fucking bastard snake," so we've got that to look forward to!