"Outlaws" is the sixteenth episode of Season 1 of Lost. Sawyer becomes convinced that a wild boar has a personal vendetta against him after it ransacks his tent and attacks him in the jungle. Meanwhile, Hurley and Sayid try to help Charlie come to terms with what he did to Ethan. Flashbacks in this episode center around Sawyer's time in Australia and his hunt for the real Sawyer.


Previously on Lost[]

  • At St. Sebastian Hospital, Jack confronts his father Christian about a botched surgery that killed a woman and her unborn child and accuses him of being drunk during the operation. At the board meeting, Jack tells the hospital's directors he believes his father's intoxication directly led to the woman's death. ("All the Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues")
  • After his torture by Sayid, Kate visits Sawyer with the letter he showed her. She tells him that she knows that the letter was not written to him but by him: his father killed his mother and then himself after being conned out of their money by a man named Sawyer. ("Confidence Man")



Young sawyer

A young James listens to what his mother tells him.

As a child, Sawyer is placed under his bed by his mother. She tells him not to come out from under it, no matter what. He lays there and hears a gunshot from outside the room. The door opens, and a man enters. Sawyer’s father sits on his son’s bed and shoots himself.


Years later, Sawyer enters a hotel room with a young woman, named Mary Jo. They kiss, but before they can continue, a man reveals himself. Sawyer recognizes him as Hibbs and ushers Mary Jo out. He threatens the intruder, due to some apparent history between the two. Hibbs offers Sawyer a document to make them “even for the Tampa job." Hibbs explains he has found the "real Mr. Sawyer," the man who conned Sawyer’s parents and caused his father to shoot his mother and then himself. Hibbs tells him the man, now named Frank Duckett, is in Australia.


Sawyer is given a gun. (promotional still)

Arriving in Australia, Sawyer heads out to the harbor to acquire a gun from one of Hibbs’ contacts. The man warns Sawyer that "you never know yourself until you point a gun at a man," and if he finds that he is not the killing type, there is no refund.

Sawyer heads to a shrimp stand, where Duckett is working. He loads his gun and has a perfect opportunity to kill the man. But after engaging in conversation with the man, Sawyer finds he cannot go through with his plan, and Frank turns around to see nothing but a car driving away. Sawyer heads to a bar, drinking shot after shot, and meets Jack's father, Christian Shephard. The two chat, and Christian mentions his trademark saying, "that's why the Red Sox will never win the World Series." He also talks about his son who hates him, and that Christian is truly more proud of him than his son will ever know. Christian says one phone call to his son could fix everything, but he is too weak to do it. Sawyer says that his business in Australia would ease his suffering, and so Christian convinces him that he must do it.

1x16 duckett sawyer

Sawyer shoots Duckett.

At night, torrential rain hits as Duckett puts out the trash. Sawyer watches him from his car and pulls out his gun. He walks over to Frank, says “Sawyer,” and shoots him in the chest. He pulls out the letter he has carried since he was a child and begins to read it. However, as he says “Dear Mr. Sawyer,” Duckett’s response of "Who?" causes him to stop. Sawyer realizes that Hibbs has lied to him; Duckett was merely in debt to Hibbs, and Hibbs tricked Sawyer into being his free mercenary. Before he dies, Frank’s last words are that "it’ll come back around." A stunned Sawyer stares at what he has done.

On the Island[]

Day 29

1x16 sawyer 2

Sawyer wakes to find a boar in his tent.

Sawyer wakes up to find a boar ransacking his tent. He chases it into the jungle, but before he returns he hears whispers. Among them are the faint words "it’ll come back around."

Day 30

The next morning, Sawyer tries to salvage items from the wreckage left by the boar. Sayid arrives to mock him, and Sawyer asks him about what he heard when he was returning to camp after being kidnapped by the French woman. Sayid speaks about the whispers, but Sawyer shrugs it off when asked if he heard them too.

In the jungle, Kate returns a gun to Jack that she had borrowed. Jack mentions there is just one gun left to get back, and Sawyer has it. While Jack does not mind, Kate is adamant she can get it. Meanwhile, at the caves, Claire tells Charlie that she has started to remember things through dreams about him. Her attempts to reach out to him don't seem to work, however, as Charlie brushes off her offer of going for a walk together.

1x16 sawyer 3

The boar knocks Sawyer into the mud.

Sawyer is tracking the boar in the jungle when he once again hears whispers, and again hears "it’ll come back around." The boar then appears behind him, charging straight ahead. Sawyer tries to run, but the boar knocks him to the ground in the mud.

Back at his tent, Kate is enjoying herself as Sawyer tells her about what has happened. He is convinced that the boar is harassing him, and he grabs his gun to take revenge.

Further down the beach, Hurley and Charlie drag Ethan’s body to an area where he can be buried. Hurley asks Charlie if he is all right, but he does not respond. Hurley heads for Sayid’s tent, saying he thinks Charlie might be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, as he has recently shot and killed a man.

1x16 kate

Kate plays "I never" with Sawyer.

Kate catches up with Sawyer in the jungle, highlighting his complete inability to track the boar. She offers to help him in return for carte blanche, a blank check. If she wants anything from his stash in the future, she will get it, no questions asked. Sawyer reluctantly agrees. As night falls, the two make camp, and Sawyer offers Kate some liquor from the plane if she will play a game of "I never" with him. The two then ask each other a number of questions, revealing a lot of sensitive facts, such as that Kate was once married. The game ends dramatically, however, as both drink when on the topic of “I never killed a man,” revealing that they both have, at a point in their past. Sawyer says it looks like they have something in common after all.

During the night, Sawyer dreams of his childhood, hiding under the bed. Instead of his father in the room, however, he sees a boar and hears "it’ll come back around" once again.

Day 31

The next day Kate wakes him up, saying he is shaking. They realize that the camp has been attacked by the boar for a second time, but that it only destroyed Sawyer’s items and left Kate's untouched. Locke finds them, saying he was looking for plane wreckage and thought he would come and say hello. They tell him about the recent events, and Locke talks about a dog that appeared to his foster mother after her daughter died. The pet stayed up with her, sleeping on the daughter’s bed every night until his mother died. Kate asks whether he thought it was his sister, but Locke says what mattered was his mother's belief in it.

1x16 charlie sayid

Sayid tries to help Charlie.

Sayid finds Charlie by the shore, and Charlie soon understands why he is there. Charlie says he feels no guilt over what happened, as it was to protect the survivors from an evil man. Sayid tells Charlie about the first man he killed, and how he woke up every night after for a long time before he could accept what he had done. What happened with Ethan will be with Charlie for the rest of his life, and Sayid says that he is not alone, whether he pretends he is or not.

Sawyer and Kate manage to find the boar’s wallow and discover a baby hog. Sawyer waves the boar in the air to attract its parent, much to Kate’s disgust. She shouts for him to let the defenseless creature go, and on his refusal, she kicks his leg, causing him to trip and release the piglet. She tells him to find his own way home and walks away.

1x16 sawyer 4

Sawyer decides to spare the boar.

Continuing his search, Sawyer finally comes face to face with the adult boar. He pulls out his gun, ready to shoot, but decides he cannot kill it. The similarities between the boar and Duckett in his past are not lost on Sawyer, and when Kate reveals herself again, Sawyer says, "it's just a boar." He heads back to camp.

At the beach, Charlie finds Claire, offering to take that walk with her now. The two head off along the beach, as Charlie finally confront his feelings about killing a man. Elsewhere, Jack is chopping wood when Sawyer arrives with his gun. He eventually hands it over, and when Jack says, "that’s why the Sox will never win the Series," Sawyer remembers Christian saying the same thing in Australia. He realizes the son Christian spoke of was Jack, but says nothing.


  • Sawyer's first name is revealed to be James when he is talking with Frank Duckett at the shrimp stand.
  • The Boston Red Sox had won the 2004 World Series by the time this episode aired, but it had not yet occurred at the time that the events of this episode take place, according to the timeline.
  • This episode is Rated TV-14-LV.

Production notes[]

  • This episode was the first of the final nine episodes after the show was picked up for an entire season after the initial 13 episode order.[1]
  • Emilie de Ravin becomes a full series regular in this episode. Previously, she had only been credited when she appeared. Her contract was adjusted as ABC gave the show a full season pickup, ordering the nine additional episodes needed to complete the season order.[2]
  • Ian Somerhalder (Boone) and Maggie Grace (Shannon) did not appear in this episode.
    • This is the first time either character has been absent.
  • Daniel Dae Kim (Jin), Yunjin Kim (Sun) and Harold Perrineau (Michael) appear without speaking lines.
  • This episode marks the first appearance of the first raft.

Cut material[]


Locke says the tail came off over the water.

  • The line that Sawyer hears in the whispers, which he earlier heard from Hibbs, was to have been "I was going to pay."[3] The line would have played repeatedly in whispers throughout the episode.[4][5]
  • Sawyer's dialog with Mary Jo would have suggested that he was running a con similar to the one from "Confidence Man" on her. Hibbs was to have been missing a part of one finger, a mystery to be explained in a later episode. He would have challenged Sawyer to define a "shrimp truck," and Sawyer would have done so successfully, supposedly costing Hibbs a bet.[6]
  • When Claire approached him, Charlie would have been fashioning a shovel for Ethan's corpse from a golf club, to Hurley's consternation. Hurley would have shared a few awkward words with Claire.[7] Hurley's later conversation with Sayid would have clarified that Hurley had mistaken "chemical attack-related illness" with post-traumatic stress disorder.[8] When Sayid approached Charlie at Hurley's urging, Charlie would have jokingly called coconut-shelling a backup profession in case musical tastes changed by the time they were rescued.[9]
  • Claire's Doctor's Visit: Claire would have had a scene with Jack discussing her amnesia.
  • In claiming to search for salvage from the crash, Locke would have correctly stated that the tail section had crashed over the water. Sawyer would have asked for more details about his reincarnation story, and Locke would have said that if the accident had been his mother's fault, his sister would have returned as a "much meaner dog" - a joke that would have resonated seriously with Sawyer, who feared Duckett had returned as a mean boar.[10] He and Kate would have discussed the story in a later scene.[11]
  • A Deal's, A Deal: Kate would have tried to cash her carte blanche, asking Sawyer for his gun as she'd told Jack she would, explaining why Sawyer offered it to Jack in the final scene.

Bloopers and continuity errors[]

Muddy Sawyer

A fence is visible in the background.

  • When Charlie and Hurley are burying Ethan, the blankets of the corpse move up and down which makes it appear Ethan is still breathing.
  • During the game of "I Never," the amount of liquid in Sawyer's bottle of alcohol changes, being almost empty halfway through the game to being full again toward the end despite drinking from the same bottle all the way through.
  • When Sawyer falls in the mud after being chased by a boar, a wire fence is clearly visible in the background. In the bonus feature "Lost on Location: The Trouble with Boars" it can be seen that this scene was filmed inside a fenced-in enclosure.
  • When Hurley is talking with Sayid, he says that Charlie shot Ethan four times, when in fact it was six times.
  • As Sawyer exits his car at the shrimp shack, he opens the cylinder of his revolver to verify it is loaded. He then spins the cylinder which produces a mechanical-ratchet noise. Since the cylinder is open, it is disengaged from the revolvers lockworks and would not make such a sound.
  • As Sawyer is watching Frank Duckett take out the trash from the shrimp shack, he checks the ammo in his gun. This time, he opens the cylinder the opposite way he has opened it every other time.
  • Contrary to the popular saying, "shrimp on the barbie," Australians call shrimp "prawns." However, Frank Duckett was an American so he could have made a cultural mistake.


This episode introduces a new theme for Claire that appears on the Season 1 soundtrack as "Thinking Clairely." It also introduces a related theme that characterizes James's quest to find the original Sawyer, and another motif related to Sawyer's search for revenge. The episode also introduces a new suspense motif, and it closes on a new theme.


Recurring themes[]

Literary techniques[]

  • Sawyer killed Duckett in order to try to get away from his past and tried to do the same on the Island. However, he realized that killing the boar wouldn't help him escape his problems and left it alone. (Juxtaposition)
  • In his past, both Hibbs and Christian Shephard indirectly or directly goaded Sawyer on to kill the "real Sawyer," and he impulsively did. On the Island, Kate went with him and actively persuaded him not to kill the boar. (Juxtaposition)
  • Sawyer will later find and kill the "real Sawyer" while on the Island, revealed in "The Brig". (Foreshadowing)
  • Both Jack and Christian use the phrase "that's why the Sox will never win the World Series." Ben would later prove his access to the outside world by showing Jack footage of the Red Sox winning the 2004 World Series. (Foreshadowing)
  • Kate reveals that she was once briefly married, later shown in "I Do". (Foreshadowing)
  • Christian tells Sawyer that one phone call could "fix" his strained relationship with Jack. (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Sawyer, a conman, was conned into killing a man by Hibbs. (Irony)

Cultural references[]

  • Boston Red Sox: Both Christian and Jack say, "that's why the Red Sox will never win the World Series." The Boston Red Sox are a Major League Baseball team; they did not win a World Series title from 1919 until 2004, overcoming a 3-0 deficit to the rival New York Yankees, during their post-season run.

Storyline analysis[]

  • Sawyer's dad kills Sawyer's mom and himself. (Crimes)
  • Sawyer kills Frank Duckett. (Crimes)

Episode connections[]

Episode references[]

  • Jack reminds Kate that she kissed Sawyer to try to get Shannon's inhaler back. ("Confidence Man")
  • Sawyer asks Sayid what he heard in the jungle. ("Solitary")
  • Sayid says that the boar have left the area. This is what John told Jack. ("Hearts and Minds")
  • Hurley says he thinks Charlie is suffering from PTSD from killing Ethan. ("Homecoming")

Episode allusions[]

External links[]