When Jack refuses to operate on Ben, Kate is told that Sawyer will die unless Jack changes his mind. On the main island, Locke and Sayid debate the cause of Eko’s death.

Written by Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse
Directed by Tucker Gates


At some point during her life as a fugitive, on the run from Marshall Edward Mars, Kate — going by the pseudonym Monica — fell in love with a police officer named Kevin Callis, and the two eventually married. But try as she might to live a perfect, happy life, the entire affair was built on a lie, and the whole thing eventually unraveled. It began after Kate made a call to Marshall Mars, informing him that she didn’t want to play their game anymore. To her surprise, Mars agreed that if she could stay put and stop running, he would leave her be. After a scare one morning when she thought she might be pregnant, the reality of what she was doing crashed in around her, and she ended it. She knocked Kevin out by putting something in his drink, and then confessing the truth to him when he couldn’t do anything about it, before going on the run once more.


After being allowed to take a look at Ben’s medical files and x-rays, Jack determines that Ben’s spinal tumor will be inoperable in about one week. Ben says that he’s ready to proceed immediately, but Jack informs him that he intends to let Ben die by not performing the urgently-needed surgery.

Immediately following Eko’s death, Locke decides to bury him right where he died, to spare the rest of the survivors the anguish of yet another funeral. Locke leaves with Sayid to retrieve some shovels, and when they’re alone, Locke tells Sayid that it was the smoke monster that killed Eko, and that Eko died for a reason though he doesn’t know what that reason is yet. When Sayid points out that they don’t seem to be headed for the beach camp, Locke assures him they are — after a quick detour. It turned out that Locke just wanted to get Eko’s “prayer stick” to bury alongside him. Locke later presides over a brief funeral, after which he spots one of the inscriptions on the stick, which reads “Lift up your eyes and look north. John 3:05.” Locke seems to have a revelation when he sees those words.

Danny Pickett shows up at the cages to take Kate to work duty, but says that Sawyer has the day off. When Kate refuses to go without him, Danny relents and allows Sawyer to come. At the worksite, an alarm goes off warning of a breach in the compound. The breach is soon revealed to be caused by an extremely distraught Alex, who’s desperately looking for someone, and asks Danny to talk to Ben. When one of the Others grabs Alex and drags her away, she shouts at Kate not to believe anything the Others say to her, because they’re planning to kill Sawyer, just like they killed Alex’s boyfriend.

Later, Kate overhears Juliet telling Danny about an acceleration in their plans. Juliet then approaches Kate and asks her to put a hood over her head and come with her. Kate’s unconvinced until Juliet points out that Danny is going to kill Sawyer, but Kate can do something to save his life if she goes along with Juliet’s request. She agrees. Juliet takes her down to Jack’s cell, where the two communicate between the plexiglas wall. It’s the first time they’ve spoken since they were abducted, and it’s a raw, emotional moment for them both. They fill each other in on their respective situations, and then Kate pleads with Jack to do the operation on Ben or Sawyer will be killed. But Jack refuses to give in, and calls for the Others to take Kate away.

When Kate is returned to her cell, Sawyer is brought back in too by Danny, and Danny warns him that he’s going to die tomorrow. When they’re alone, she fills Sawyer in on her meeting with Jack and what the Others have asked him to do. Sawyer agrees that Jack shouldn’t do the surgery, but Kate becomes angry that Sawyer is just putting on his usual pretenses, pretending not to care about himself or anyone else. She climbs up out of her cage again and breaks open his, but he finally tells her what he recently learned from Ben: they’re not on the main island, and there’s nowhere for them to run to. He says he couldn’t bring himself to tell her because it would have destroyed her sense of hope, and she kisses him passionately in response. In an act of desperation, their passion quickly turns to sex. Afterwards, Sawyer proclaims his love to her.

Jack’s intercom comes to life again, and a voice tells him that his door is unlocked. He walks out of his cell, finding the facility empty, and finds his way into Ben’s monitoring room. One of the screens shows a close-up of Kate and Sawyer’s post-coital embrace, and Jack takes a long, hard look at the sight. Ben enters quietly behind him, and offers his condolences for losing Kate to Sawyer. Jack decides on the spot that there’s nothing left on the island for him, so he tells Ben he’ll do the surgery tomorrow morning if Ben agrees to let Jack leave the island for good. Without hesitating, Ben agrees.

The next morning, Jack and Juliet scrub in for the surgery, and an unspoken subtext between them indicates that Juliet has no idea if Jack intends to abide by her wishes and end Ben’s life on the operating table. Inside, Ben asks Juliet if Alex asked her about him, but she says that they’ve lost track of Alex after she was “taken home” last night. After Ben is under anesthesia, Jack makes his first incision, with Juliet assisting and several Others looking on. When he sees that Jack has started the surgery, Danny exits the building with one of his cronies, complaining about Ben’s decision to put his life in the hands of “one of them,” pointing out significantly that “Shephard wasn’t even on Jacob’s list.” They find that Kate’s escaped her cage, and as it begins to rain, they tell her to step aside so they can get at Sawyer. Inside the surgical bay, Jack makes a sudden incision when no one’s looking, and then knocks out the only other person in the room besides Juliet. He calls out to Tom, who’s watching from the observation room above, explaining that he’s made an incision in Ben’s kidney sac, and Ben will die if it’s not stitched up in the next hour. He orders Tom to come into the room and bring a walkie-talkie. Outside, Kate and Sawyer try fighting for their lives, but the two Others gain the upper hand. Just as Sawyer’s about to be killed, Tom calls into Danny’s walkie-talkie and tells him to give the walkie to Kate. Danny argues but Tom convinces him to hand over the walkie. Danny does so, and Jack informs her that she has an hour’s head start before the Others come after her and Sawyer. He asks if she remembers the story he told her the day they crashed on the island while she was stitching him up. She says yes. Once she and Sawyer are safe, Jack tells her to radio him and tell him that story to prove that she’s really safe. Kate doesn’t want to leave without him, but he screams at her to run.

  • The exact date is unknown, but Kate’s marriage occurred somewhere between the beginning of her life as a fugitive, and her trip to Australia, where she was captured by Marshall Mars.
    Question: When was Kate married? [1.16]]
  • Kate married a police officer named Kevin Callis, whom she loved deeply.
    Question: Who did Kate marry? [1.16]
  • Kate left Kevin when the weight of living a lie finally became too much to bear, after she almost wound up pregnant.
    Question: Why didn’t Kate’s marriage last? [1.16]
  • In addition to her childhood friend Tom Brennan, Kate also loved the man she married — Kevin Callis.
    Question: Who was Kate in love with in her past? [1.16]
  • The source of the list appears to be someone of great importance, named Jacob.
    Question: Who or what is the source of the list used by the Others to know who to abduct from the tailies’ camp? [2.07]

  • What was Locke thinking when he read John 3:05 on Eko’s stick?
  • Who is Jacob? Is he the leader of the Others that Ben referred to while he was being held in captivity by the survivors?

“I Do” is the fifth Kate-centric episode of the series.

My memories of this episode are colored with frustration due to the way it was handled on ABC. The first six episodes of Season 3 were shown as a “pod” in the fall, and then the show went on an extended break until January, leaving fans feeling dissatisfied with the right-in-the-middle-of-the-action cliffhanger at the end of “I Do.” Looking back, the whole thing plays a lot better than I remember it, and I particularly enjoyed seeing Jack turn the tables on the Others at the end, taking charge and barking orders. Matthew Fox played that moment with such righteous anger; it’s definitely a highlight of Season 3.

This episode marks the first time that Jacob’s name is ever uttered.