"Whatever Happened, Happened" is the eleventh episode of Season 5 of Lost and the ninety-seventh produced hour of the series as a whole. It was originally broadcast on April 1, 2009. Kate struggles to save a young Benjamin Linus from a gunshot wound at all costs.


Previously on Lost[]

  • Cassidy visits Sawyer in prison and shows him a picture of his daughter. ("Every Man for Himself")
  • Kate helps out Cassidy at a gas station after she almost gets caught conning a man. ("Left Behind")
  • On the helicopter, Sawyer whispers something in Kate's ear and then jumps from the helicopter. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 3")
  • On the Searcher, Kate tells Jack that she wants to take care of Aaron. ("The Little Prince")
  • Kate meets with lawyer Dan Norton at his office, who says that she will lose custody of Aaron. Kate and Jack find that Carole Littleton is his mysterious client. When Jack talks to her, he discovers that she has no knowledge of Aaron's existence. ("The Little Prince")
  • A young Ben introduces himself to Sayid in the holding cell. ("Namaste")
  • A flaming DHARMA van runs through the barracks and crashes into one of the houses. While everyone is distracted by the fire, Ben helps Sayid escape from the holding cell, believing him to be a Hostile, and they flee into the jungle. Sayid is spotted by Jin, and Sayid knocks him unconscious and takes his gun. He shoots Ben in the chest, and then runs off into the jungle. ("He's Our You")




Cassidy is surprised by Kate's visit.

Kate carries an infant Aaron to the door of Cassidy's house. The two women reunite, and Cassidy speaks of seeing Kate on the media coverage of the Oceanic Six. Kate reveals that Sawyer's whispered request on the helicopter was to find Cassidy and his daughter Clementine, and make sure they were cared for. She hands an envelope of money to Cassidy and talks to her about Sawyer, telling her the story of what really happened on the Island. Cassidy says that Sawyer was a coward and only jumped off the helicopter because he couldn't face a future with her (Kate).



Kate kisses Aaron farewell.

Three years later, during the events of "This Place Is Death", Kate leaves the marina where the survivors gathered with Ben and stops at a grocery store to buy milk for Aaron. While at the store, her cellphone rings. Caller ID indicates Jack Shephard. She ignores it but, distracted, she briefly loses Aaron and finds him walking with a woman, who from behind looks like Claire. Kate is reunited with Aaron at the store, and goes to visit Cassidy again. Clementine answers the door, greeting her as "Auntie Kate." Cassidy counsels her that she is scared that Aaron will be taken because she took him. She says Kate kept Aaron to heal her broken heart from Sawyer.

Kate visits Carole Littleton and tells her that she has a grandson named Aaron, that Claire survived the crash and that she claimed Aaron as her own to protect him and because she needed him. She tells Carole that she had checked into the motel and that Aaron is sleeping in a room two doors down. She adds that she's told him she's leaving him with his grandmother while she's away. She then tells Carole that she's going back to the Island to find Claire and bring her back to her son. As Aaron is sleeping, Kate tearfully says goodbye to him and leaves the motel room.

On the Island[]


Jin regains consciousness and finds Ben's bleeding body. He places him in the van and heads back to the Barracks.


Horace explains the situation.

At the Barracks, Horace briefs the gathered DHARMA personnel on the prisoner's escape. When Jack steps forward to ask questions, Horace regards him suspiciously and states that the prisoner must have had help from "one of us" since no Hostiles were seen crossing the fence. Later, Roger Linus approaches Kate and asks for her help operating a winch to move the burned DHARMA van. Roger and Kate seemed to have a connection as they talked. Jin arrives and, as he carries Ben to get aid, Roger sees his injured son and runs after them.


Juliet tries to save Ben.

As Sawyer examines the security monitors, Kate approaches him to ask what happened to Ben. A suspicious Horace arrives and discovers them talking. Horace finds a janitor's set of keys still in the lock of the holding cell. He states that there are only three people with these kinds of keys, including Roger and the new arrival Jack. Seeing that things are spiraling out of control, Sawyer orders Miles to keep Jack, Kate, and Hurley in a house and keep his eyes on them in order not to complicate matters. Sawyer approaches Roger to ask for his keys. Not finding it, Roger says he must've left them at home. Juliet tries to save Ben, but he won't stop bleeding. In a house, Hurley and Miles try to figure out the consequences of Ben's shooting and time travel. Sawyer tries to recruit help from Jack, but he refuses telling Kate that he already saved Ben once, and he did it for her. Jack claims that he's done trying to fix things and now puts his trust in the Island. Kate remarks that she doesn't like the new Jack, but Jack reminds her that she didn't like the old him.


Miles argues with Hurley about time travel.

Kate arrives at the infirmary and donates blood to keep young Ben alive. As Kate and Roger sit at Ben's bedside, he admits that he may not have been "the world's greatest father" since Ben stole his keys because of him.

Inside the house, Hurley is trying to understand the unanswered questions of time travel. Miles explains to him that they are in their present while everyone else are in their past. Hurley wonders why a future Ben couldn't remember that Sayid, the guy who tortured him in the future is the same guy who shot him in his past. Miles has no answer.


Sawyer and Kate bring Ben to the Others.

Juliet is able to stabilize Ben, but can't heal him. Juliet tells Kate that the Others may be able to save his life. She secretly helps Kate load Ben into a van, and Kate drives out to the sonic fence. Sawyer catches up with her and helps her rather than stopping her. He says that he's doing it for Juliet--because Juliet feels it's wrong to let a child die. Juliet bursts into the house, dismisses Hurley and Miles, and confronts Jack as he's getting out of the shower. She asks why he came back and why he refused to help Ben. Jack responds that he was supposed to come back, but doesn't know why yet.

Kate and Sawyer carry Ben into the Others' territory. Stopping by a stream, she tells him about Cassidy and Clementine . They discuss their relationship, and Sawyer says he and Kate would not have lasted. He says he's grown up in the past three years. A group of Others surround them, and Sawyer demands to be taken to Richard Alpert.


Richard takes Ben into the Temple.

The Others escort Sawyer and Kate into the jungle, where Richard emerges. Richard recognizes Sawyer, but asks why Kate is there. After Sawyer asserts that Kate is with him, Richard asks if the boy is Benjamin Linus. Sawyer asks if Richard and Ben have met, which Richard does not respond to. Richard explains that if he takes Ben, the child will not remember any of this, will lose his innocence, and will "always be one of us." One of the Others tries to stop Richard from taking Ben, saying that Ellie and Charles won't be happy, but Richard responds by saying that he doesn't answer to them.


Locke welcomes back Ben to "the land of the living."

After Kate hands over Ben, Richard carries him through the jungle alone. He approaches the wall of the Temple, passing by a large hole in the ground. After a pause, Richard pushes open a stone door and takes him inside.


In the makeshift infirmary in the Hydra, Ben wakes up to find John Locke looking at him. As Ben's eyes widen in surprise, John welcomes him back to "the land of the living."


  • This is Kate's last flashback episode and the final traditional flashback episode centered around an Oceanic 815 survivor.
  • The episode was first broadcast on April 1st, 2009 (i.e., March 32nd), and it shares the central theme of the story March Has 32 Days from Mystery Tales No. 40, the comic book that was one of Richard's items presented to John Locke as a test in "Cabin Fever". In the 1956 story, a time traveler tries to alter history when he relives a day in his own past after struggling with the question of whether it would be possible to do anything differently if he had the opportunity to go back in time, just as Hurley and Miles struggled over the question. In the Summer 2008 ARG, the Lost creators embedded the hidden comment "March Has 32 Days" as a clue in the ARG's first email.
  • This episode title has a grammatically incorrect superfluous comma.[1]
  • This is the second Kate-centric episode title to start with the word 'Whatever', after Whatever the Case May Be.
  • This episode is rated TV-14-LV.

Production notes[]

Bloopers and continuity errors[]

  • In "He's Our You", Ben's wound was on the left side of his chest, seemingly where his heart would be located. In this episode, however, his wound is on the right side of his chest.
  • When Roger asks Kate to help him with the van, right after he tells her to stop the winch the wire cable is shown to be slack when it should have been tight from the pulling.
  • When Kate and Aaron are in the supermarket, and Kate talks to the man handling boxes, the boxes appear to contain Gatorade bottles with the "G" logo, which weren't introduced until early 2009. The events in the episode take place in 2007.
  • When Juliet enters the house in search of Jack, a close up shot of Miles and Hurley shows a glass of orange juice in front of Miles. When the shot switches to show Miles and Hurley standing up, the glass is gone.
  • When Kate goes to donate blood for Ben, Juliet puts the needle in Kate's arm and one second later the whole tubing is full of blood.


The Season 5 soundtrack includes the track "Your Kharma Hit My Dharma" from this episode.


Recurring themes[]

Cultural references[]

  • Back to the Future: Hurley looks at his hand, waiting to see if he disappears. In this movie, Marty McFly's hand starts to disappear as he was being erased from existence because he had interfered with his parents' past, preventing his mother from falling in love with his father. Seconds after this reference is made, Sawyer comes in in a rush calling Jack "Doc", the same thing McFly used to do in the movies when looking for Doc Brown. (Movies and TV)
  • Catch a Falling Star: Kate sings this 1957 song, written by Paul Vance and Lee Pockriss, to Aaron when he is asleep. (Music)
  • She's Got You: When Kate first visits Cassidy, this song by Patsy Cline is playing in her car. Patsy Cline was killed in a plane crash in 1963. "She's Got You" also was heard playing in Kate and Claire's barracks house in "Eggtown", and other Patsy Cline songs have been associated with earlier Kate flashbacks. (Music)

Literary techniques[]

  • The episode is called "Whatever Happened, Happened". (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Sawyer saves Ben's life, only to have Ben threaten to kill him later in life. (Irony)
  • Jack refused to save the young Ben because of who he would become; as a result, Kate had to take Ben to Richard, which is what will make Ben the man Jack hated. (Irony)
  • Cassidy asks Kate if Sawyer, "that son of a bitch" is still alive. (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Juliet says she couldn't "fix" Ben. (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • Sayid, Juliet, Jack, Kate and Sawyer are responsible for the person Ben will become. (Irony)
    • The person Ben becomes is in turn responsible for the choices they made. (Juxtaposition)
  • Sayid shoots Ben to (presumably) prevent Ben's future self from lying and manipulating him and others, or out of hatred or revenge. Richard Alpert tells Kate and Sawyer that if he heals Ben's gunshot wound, he will "lose his innocence", which may account for Ben's personality in the future. (Irony)
  • Jack refuses to operate on Ben this time around. (Juxtaposition)
  • Horace says the person who freed Sayid was "one of us." Richard says the same about the person Ben will become after being saved by the Others. (Regularly spoken phrases)
  • The person who welcomes Ben "back to life" is Locke -- exactly the man Ben had killed. (Irony)  (Cliffhanger)
  • Kate reckons she is not cut to be a mother and gives Aaron back to his family, thus doing the right thing. Later, she risks her life by exposing herself to the Others to save a child's life. (Juxtaposition)  (Irony)
  • Kate and Juliet (who once in their lives loved the same man) decide to work together to save Ben's life. In the flashback, Kate and Cassidy (who also loved the same man before) work together to protect their children. (Juxtaposition)

Storyline analysis[]

  • Richard Alpert says that he doesn't answer to Ellie or Widmore. (Leadership)
  • Rivals Kate and Juliet (who once in their lives loved the same man) decide to work together, as did possible rivals Kate and Cassidy in the flashback. (Rivalries)
  • Juliet, Kate and Sawyer fight to save Ben's life. (A-Missions)
  • Kate reveals to Juliet that she was engaged to Jack off the Island. (Relationships)
  • Jack tells Kate he saved Ben once for her, while Sawyer tells Kate he is helping her saving Ben for Juliet. (Relationships)

Episode connections[]

Episode references[]

Episode allusions[]