When the Others pack up and leave the Barracks, Kate is knocked out, only to wake up in the jungle handcuffed to Juliet. Back at the beach, Hurley tries to convince Sawyer that it’s in his best interests to change his deceitful ways.
|Written by Damon Lindelof & Elizabeth Sarnoff
Directed by Karen Gaviola
A few months after she killed her stepfather and escaped from custody, Kate got stranded in Iowa and became friends with Sawyer’s old flame Cassidy Phillips after a chance encounter while Cassidy was running a scam. Recognizing a kindred spirit, Kate confessed the truth about herself to Cassidy, and told her she’d come to Iowa to see her mother, Diane Jansen, even though she knew her mom would be under surveillance 24/7 by the Feds. She wanted to know why her mother betrayed her, choosing Kate’s abusive stepfather Wayne over her. Cassidy offered to help Kate, and orchestrated a meeting between the two of them at the diner where Diane worked. Kate asked her mother her question, but Diane replied that for good or bad she loved Wayne, and Kate had murdered him in cold blood. And she didn’t do it for her mother, she did it for herself. She allowed Kate to leave without alerting the nearby Feds, but warned her that if she ever saw Kate again, she would yell for help without hesitation. Diane effectively severed all ties between them, and Kate was left a stunned, emotional wreck. Kate later pledges to Cassidy that she’ll never forgive her mom for turning her in.
Juliet brings Kate something to eat in the Others’ rec room, but Kate sees her coming and tries to attack her. The attempt fails; Juliet takes her down easily, and then leaves her alone.
The next morning, Kate is visited by Locke, freed from his captivity, who informs her that the Others are leaving the Barracks because the location is no longer a secret, and he’s going with them. He says he tried to convince them to take her too, but they refused, and she, Jack, and Sayid have to stay behind. Kate tries to find out what’s happened to Locke to make him think that his place is with the Others, but he isn’t willing to explain.
Later in the day, Kate hears activity outside and watches as the Others pack up their belongings. To her horror, they put on gas masks as well, and then one of them tosses a smoke grenade inside the rec room and locks her inside. Though she tries to fight it, it’s no use and she passes out. When she wakes up, she’s startled to find she’s out in the middle of the jungle — and handcuffed to an unconscious Juliet. She sees that Juliet has a pocket knife clipped to her, and takes it. But Juliet wakes up and grabs Kate’s hand, demanding to know what she’s doing here with her. Juliet realizes she needs to earn Kate’s trust, so she lets her have the knife. Juliet claims that she was knocked out the same way Kate was. Kate tries to pick the handcuffs’ lock with the knife, but can’t. Juliet is very upset to learn that her people packed up and left home without her. Kate insists that they go back to the Barracks to look for Jack and Sayid.
At the beach camp, Hurley informs Sawyer that the survivors have decided that his recent behavior is the last straw, and they’re planning a vote over whether or not to banish him from camp. He suggests that Sawyer may be able to make amends, but Sawyer isn’t interested and tells him to go away. Sawyer later tries to prove to himself that he can fend for himself and get his own food, but is frustrated to realize that he can’t. So he asks Hurley to help him, and as a start, Hurley makes him apologize for calling him names.
At night, Kate searches for a trail, hoping it will lead them back to the Barracks. When Kate asks why the Others would handcuff the two of them together and drag them out into the jungle, Juliet’s answer is that “Ben has a thing for mind games.” It starts to rain, and Kate wants to keep moving because she’s afraid the trail will be washed away. But Juliet argues, saying that Kate has no business going back for Jack, because she ruined his chance to leave the island by returning for him after he expressly forbade her to do that very thing. Kate punches Juliet, and they tussle; this time Kate gets the upper hand and accidentally dislocates Juliet’s shoulder. As she tries to apologize, they suddenly hear the telltale sounds of the smoke monster about to appear. They run until they reach what looks like the same patch of trees inside which Kate hid from the monster back in “Pilot, Part 1.” Juliet keeps asking what the monster is, implying she’s never encountered it before, but Kate shushes her. The monster slowly approaches them and peers intently at Juliet, flashing her repeatedly with a very bright light. But then it suddenly retreats, for no apparent reason.
Kate and Juliet wait a while in their hiding spot, hoping that the monster has gone. Juliet asks again about what it is, but Kate has trouble swallowing the notion that Juliet has never seen it before. Juliet informs Kate that this was the fourth time her shoulder has been dislocated, so it wasn’t entirely Kate’s fault. They argue again about Jack and why he told Kate not to come back for him; Kate believes it’s because Jack didn’t want her to get hurt, but Juliet tells her that Jack did it because he was suffering from a broken heart, having witnessed her sexual encounter with Sawyer in Sawyer’s cage. Juliet then forces Kate to pop her shoulder back into its socket.
They wait in their hiding spot until morning, and then set out for the Barracks once again. While they walk, Kate states her belief that Juliet’s observation of Jack having a broken heart is based only on her own opinion, and not anything Jack said to her. Juliet doesn’t refute this, but suggests that she knows Jack a lot better than Kate does. The smoke monster returns and they run until they reach the sonic fence surrounding the Barracks. Kate tries to keep the two of them from entering, but Juliet insists that the fence is off. When Kate tries to pull her away from the fence, Juliet surprises her by retrieving a key from her pocket and unlocking their handcuffs. She then runs inside the sonic fence and enters an access code, activating it. She gets Kate to run inside the fence as well, just before it turns on. While Kate is ready to keep running, Juliet stands her ground, watching as the monster approaches. But when the smoke monster reaches the now-active fence, the fence is effective at keeping the monster out. Kate realizes how much lying Juliet has been doing and angrily confronts her. Juliet admits that the Others don’t know what the monster is, but they know that the sonic fence works against it. She also admits that the Others really did leave her behind, gassing her the same way they did Kate. She concocted this entire scheme of forcing herself and Kate to work together, so that Kate might be convinced not to leave Juliet behind the same way the Others did.
At Hurley’s urging, Sawyer takes Claire an extra blanket and shows an interest in Aaron. Claire is amused at his attempts to be nice, even though he all but bungles the effort. The next morning, Sawyer targets Desmond, trying to assist with Desmond’s boar-hunting efforts. When Desmond manages to kill one, Sawyer triumphantly returns to camp and roasts it for everyone. Charlie devours his piece of meat, complimenting Sawyer, but Sawyer is shocked to learn that Charlie knows nothing about a meeting to vote on Sawyer’s status within the group. Sawyer confronts Hurley, accusing Hurley of conning him into being nice to everyone. But Hurley says it was never about conning him; he believes Sawyer should be the group’s temporary leader, and to do that, he’ll need to do some damage control. Sawyer’s incredulous at the suggestion that he should lead anything, but Hurley points out that Jack, Locke, Kate, and Sayid are all gone at the moment, so everyone wants to look to Sawyer to take the reigns, if he’ll let them. Sawyer reluctantly accepts this new role, carving up the boar and handing it out to everyone.
Kate and Juliet arrive at the Barracks and Kate finds Jack inside his house, unconscious. She wakes him and explains the situation. Kate apologizes, saying she should have listened to him and not come back. Jack asks if Juliet left with the Others, and Kate says that they left her behind too. Jack says they have to go back to camp, after Juliet retrieves Sayid, the four of them set off for the beach. Sayid doesn’t want Juliet to come, but Jack points out that she was left behind just like they were, implying that Juliet is one of them now.
- Where are the Others planning to go now that they can no longer live at the Barracks?
- What was the smoke monster doing when it flashed its bright lights at Juliet? Was it reviewing her past the same way it did Eko’s about a month earlier?
“Left Behind” is the sixth Kate-centric episode of the series.
“Left Behind” isn’t a bad episode, even though the flashback storyline was another typical Season 3 snoozefest. I even liked the notion of Kate and Juliet being forced to work together, and the bottleneck that would put on their issues with one another. I especially like that despite all she’d done, Juliet never backed down or apologized, always seeing herself as just as much of a victim of Ben’s machinations as the Oceanic survivors (even though she never says as much). But did we really need for the two of them to fall into a great big mud pit? It’s the equivalent of the periodic “shirtless Sawyer” scenes, and it always frustrates me to see storytelling of Lost’s very high caliber stoop to that sort of pandering.
I did like the Hurley/Sawyer scenes, and the way Hurley once again instinctively knew what was in the best interests of the group and acted on it. I liked that he got the upper hand on Sawyer, and that Sawyer fell for it. And I especially liked how, looking back on this now after Season 5, Sawyer did not easily slip into the role of leader here. But in Season 5, after three years’ experience in his leadership role among the Others, it suited him surprisingly well. Clearly it was a slow transition with a steep learning curve, and that process began in this very episode. But I love that he grew and changed enough to eventually become really good at it.