202 redirects here. For Jacob's candidate with that corresponding number, see Harggus.

"Adrift" is the second episode of Season 2 of Lost and the 27th produced hour of the series as a whole. Occurring at the same point as the previous episode, emphasis shifts to Kate and Locke's perspective and what happened to them before Jack joined them down inside the Hatch. Meanwhile, Sawyer and Michael try to come to terms with what happened to them on the raft.


Previously on Lost


Michael insists on fighting for custody.

Michael visits his lawyer about fighting for custody of Walt. The lawyer says giving up Walt for adoption so Brian Porter can become his legal father would mean Michael would have no rights at all. Michael wants to fight all the way, but the lawyer tells him the proceedings will cost a lot of money, asking if he's sure. Michael is adamant, however, that he is going to get his son back.

A hearing takes place between the Michael and Susan Lloyd, accompanied by their lawyers. Susan's lawyer begin to nitpick at Michael's history as a father, culminating in the conclusion that "for someone who wants to retain his parental right, you don’t know very much about your son." Michael, however, stands firm that he is Walt’s father.

Michael says his farewells to Walt.

At another conference room, Susan speaks to Michael alone. She says she thinks Michael will win in court, but cannot understand why he is doing this when he is not involved in Walt's life and could never provide what she could. She pleads for Michael to let Walt go, and hands him the adoption forms.

At a park, Susan and the toddler Walt arrive to meet Michael. Michael finds it hard to call himself Walt's father but hesitatingly tells Walt that he will have a great life with his mother and Brian. He also promises that "your daddy" loves him very much and always will. Before leaving, he gives Walt a toy polar bear, asking Susan one day, at least, to tell him who it was from.

On the Island

Locke is "forced" to push the button.

At the Hatch, Locke shouts down the shaft for Kate, who has vanished. Tying himself a line of rope, Locke heads down after her. Locke reaches the bottom of the shaft and wanders around to discover he is in fact in some kind of concrete bunker. He removes his shoes and tiptoes further inside. He finds a kitchen and discovers Kate dazed on the floor. A man suddenly appears behind him, holding a gun, and asks Locke, "Are you him?"

Claire finds the statue.

Locke pretends that he is indeed "him." However, when the man asks, "What did one snowman say to the other snowman?" and Locke can't answer, he realizes Locke is lying. The man orders Kate to tie Locke up, but Locke says Kate should be tied up because she is a fugitive and is the more dangerous one. The man allows it; Locke ties Kate's hands but also hides a pocket knife in her trousers. Kate is then locked inside a darkened room by the man.

Jack, waiting at the caves, decides to follow Locke and Kate to the Hatch. Claire and Charlie watch from afar, but Claire suddenly notices a Virgin Mary statue in his bag. Charlie brushes it off as nothing important.

Gagged with her hands tied tightly behind her back, Kate attempts to free herself, but the bindings on her hands are tight. Kate maneuvers her arms in front and uses the pocket knife to free herself. She finds a light switch, discovering that she is actually in a pantry full of food with "DHARMA" labels. She notices a ventilation shaft, but before she climbs up, she spots some Apollo candy bars on a shelf and cannot help eating one. Moving up inside the vent, she begins to crawl through. Nearby, Locke is explaining to the man about the plane crash. He says his name is Desmond, and asks how many of the survivors are sick. A buzzer begins to sound. Desmond orders Locke up, takes him to a computer and tells him to enter the numbers 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, and 42 and to press "Execute." Locke hesitates but does as Desmond tells him, and the buzzing stops and a timer on the wall resets to 108:00.

Kate finds a pantry full of food.

Jack shouts for Kate and Locke; Desmond observes him through the Mirror Scope he has set up. Kate see Jack through an air vent, but Desmond plays loud music and Jack can't hear Kate call out for him. Desmond confronts Jack, ordering him to drop his weapon before Jack realizes that he knows the man.

On the raft

Sawyer emerges from the water after the attack on their raft. He manages to grab some wreckage and gets to Michael before he drowns. However, Michael is still not breathing.

Sawyer begins to perform CPR and manages to revive Michael, but is forced to restrain him to stop his struggling for Walt. He refuses to give up shouting even though the fishing boat the kidnappers used is long gone.

Michael and Sawyer on their raft pieces.

Meanwhile, Sawyer screams for Jin, and Michael asks Sawyer if he feels guilty for making them fire the flare. The two argue, and Michael orders him to get off his raft, but not before they hear noises and are attacked. Sawyer’s bleeding shoulder has attracted a shark. Sawyer decides to try and swim for another piece of raft wreckage after his argument, managing to hold on to a small piece. As Michael looks on, Sawyer tells him he was trying to save Walt when he was shot, contrary to what Michael may think about him saving himself.

Some time later, Sawyer decides to pull out the bullet in his shoulder with his bare hand, as Michael insists he will not be able to do it. Nevertheless, Sawyer is successful, coldly asking Michael for a Band-Aid afterward.

Still struggling at sea, Sawyer surmises that the kidnappers' boat was too small to travel far, so it must have come from the island. Sawyer reminds him that Rousseau had said that the Others were coming for the child, and while at the time they believed this meant Aaron, Sawyer believes they were after Walt all along. Michael splashes water at Sawyer for saying his son’s name, causing Sawyer’s piece of wreckage to break apart. He returns to share Michael’s section, and the two grudgingly sit together.

Michael and Sawyer find that the current has brought them "home."

Michael and Sawyer discover one of the pontoons from the raft, which is much sturdier than their current piece of wreckage. Handing Michael the gun, Sawyer heads after it. The shark emerges from the ocean and Michael violently fires four rounds, venting his rage. Both manage to get to the pontoon, and they lie down exhausted. As the sun rises, Michael promises to get back his son as the two realize that the current has brought them back to the Island. "We're home," adds Sawyer. The two wash up on shore and immediately hear Jin. He runs out to them, shouting. They finally realize he is saying "Others!" as a group of strangers carrying weapons ominously appear, advancing on the three.


Octagon logo found on the tail of the shark.

  • A DHARMA Logo can be seen branded on the tail of the shark that attacks Sawyer and Michael.
  • The mats in the cabinet where Kate was kept have octagonal holes like the DHARMA Logo.
  • When Michael is talking to his lawyer, we get a very brief glimpse of the World Trade Center towers.
  • This episode is rated TV-14-V.

Production notes

  • The episode was originally going to be a Sawyer flashback. StarTrek.com announced that Jolene Blalock had been cast and that some scenes were partially shot before being scrapped in favor of a Michael-centric episode. It is unknown if filming was completed, but some pictures surfaced online in July 2008. One of them has Kevin Dunn, who played Gordy in what would be the eventual Sawyer flashback episode in Season 2, "The Long Con".
    • In an interview with Variety in April 2009, Carlton Cuse explained why the Sawyer flashback was dropped from this episode:

This happens all the time in both film and TV, scenes or storylines are shot that just don’t work out as you hoped. We’ve been fortunate to have a really high success rate on Lost. In fact, that was the only time we dumped an entire storyline. No fault of the actors — it just wasn’t properly conceived. We have no plans to put it on the DVDs because unlike most deleted scenes, which just don’t fit into the body of a particular show, this storyline was not at the quality bar we have for the show.

  • Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje makes his debut as Mr. Eko; he becomes a regular in "Everybody Hates Hugo". He does not have any lines.
  • Bernard, Cindy, and Libby were portrayed by extras in the final scene when attacking the raft survivors. This could have been done for budgetary reasons as to not pay the actors for a full episode or because they had not been cast yet in the case of Bernard and Libby. The most different is undoubtedly Bernard's extra who has a mustache and looks nothing like him.
  • This is the first episode not to credit Malcolm David Kelley (Walt), although his name will be restored to the main cast for his guest appearances this season.

Bloopers and continuity errors

  • In the previous episode, as the second verse of "Make Your Own Kind of Music" is playing, you can briefly hear Kate shout to Jack. In this episode, she is shouting as the chorus of the song plays.
  • Jack's first lines to John in the hatch are slightly different than in "Man of Science, Man of Faith".
  • The shot of a young Walt holding Susan's hand before and after Michael gives him a toy polar bear is exactly the same.
  • While adrift on the sea, Sawyer tells Michael that Rousseau said the Others were "coming for the kid", connecting this to their capture of Walt. However, Rousseau did not reveal that she had heard whispers about the Others coming for the boy until she had kidnapped Aaron and taken him to the source of the black smoke, after the Raft had already set sail. The only two people she told were Sayid and Charlie.


This episode introduces a motif for the tail section survivors and a theme that plays during discovery scenes.


Recurring themes

Cultural references

Literary techniques

  • Sawyer and Michael are brought back to the Island by the currents, and discover that Jin has been there for some time as his hands have been bound by "the Others". (Plot twist)  (Cliffhanger)
  • Despite the fact that the raft had been traveling for a day and a half at night, the currents still carry Michael and Sawyer back to the Island, the place they were hoping to escape from, and the place that they now wish to return to, in order to rescue Walt. (Irony)
  • In keeping with the title of the episode, both sets of events shown in this episode present Michael at times when he is "adrift" in his life, with no sense of direction or purpose, other than "get Walt back". In his past, this spiritual emptiness probably continued until the events of "Special"; in the present, he finds his way back to solid ground, giving him a solid direction and purpose again. (Juxtaposition)  (Symbolism)
  • Desmond asks Locke: "Are you him?" In Michael's flashback, Susan tells him to "let him [Walt] go." (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • When Locke tells Desmond their plane crash was 44 days ago, Desmond pauses on the thought. (Foreshadowing)

Episode connections

Episode references

  • Locke tells Desmond that Kate is a fugitive. ("Tabula Rasa")
  • In the flashbacks, Michael is still recovering from being hit by a car. Susan's lawyer also refers to the fact that all his medical bills were paid for by Susan. ("Special")
  • Sawyer says Rousseau said the Others were coming for the child. ("Exodus, Part 1")
  • Michael and Sawyer discuss Walt's kidnapping. ("Exodus, Part 2")
  • The events in the Swan are the same as those in the previous episode, this time from the point of view of Locke and Kate. ("Man of Science, Man of Faith")

Episode allusions

  • Before they left the island, Walt asked Michael what would happen if a shark attacked them on the raft. ("The Greater Good")