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All the Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues
Season 1
Episode 11
Air Date December 8, 2004
Writer(s) Javier Grillo-Marxuach
Director Stephen Williams
Flashback Jack Shephard

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Prev: Raised By Another
Next: Whatever the Case May Be

After Claire and Charlie go missing, two teams set off to find them. Things turn for a worse when Jack receives a threat in the jungle. And Locke and Boone make an interesting discovery.


Picking up right where we left off last week, the survivors react to the information that Ethan was not on the plane manifest. Fearing the worst, Jack and Locke rush out to locate Charlie and Claire. They come across Claire's bag and find a set of footprints with evidence that someone was dragged off. Jack calls to Charlie and Claire, but Locke urges him to be quiet - whoever took them could still be around. While Locke wants to organize a search party, Jack acts impetuously and runs off on his own.

We FLASHBACK—to Jack in the OR, attempting to resuscitate a female patient. The Chief of Surgery enters and orders him to call the time of death. But Jack is determined and won't stop CPR. Everyone in the room can feel the tension between them until finally, Jack demands that the Chief calls it himself.

Back at camp, Locke gathers his gear with the intention of catching up with Jack. Kate and Boone volunteer to go along with him. But when Michael tries to volunteer, Locke tells him that another person would only slow them down. Feeling rejected, Michael threatens to put together his own search party.

Out in the jungle, with little to go on, Jack's search is proving futile. We FLASHBACK to the OR again, as he looks over the dead patient's body. The Chief berates Jack for taking over his surgery. Jack says that he stepped in because one of the nurses told him the Chief's hands were shaking and that he cut into the patient's artery. And we begin to realize just how personal this argument really is when Jack asks, "How many drinks did you have at lunch, Dad?" As their eyes lock, we recognize Jack's dad, Christian.

Back on the island, Locke, Kate and Boone catch up with Jack and realize he's been going in circles. Locke insists that he return to camp and look over Sayid: "You be the doctor, I'll be the hunter." But Jack refuses and follows after them.

At camp, Michael fills up water bottles, all the while complaining to Hurley that Locke treats him like a second class citizen. Walt defends Locke and advises his father to listen to him. Michael doesn't take this too well and in a competitive action, resolves to head south in search of Charlie and Claire.

Meanwhile, the northern search continues, but they're having trouble finding any leads. Locke wants to rest, but Jack insists they push on. Kate follows Jack in an attempt to find out what's driving him so hard. Jack reveals that he feels guilty about not believing Claire when she said that someone was trying to take her baby. Locke calls after them because he's found a piece of tape from Charlie's fingers. It seems that Charlie left them a trail. They follow it hopefully, until Locke picks up the footprints again. Locke wants to follow them, while Jack insists they continue on Charlie's trail. Kate points out that the footprints could be an intentionally misleading false trail. Since she seems to know an awful lot about tracking herself, they split in two - Kate with Jack follow Charlie's trail, while Locke with Boone continue to follow the footprints.

Bored, Walt wanders down to the beach and spreads the news about Charlie and Claire. He runs into Sawyer and suggests that maybe they aren't the only people on the island. While Sawyer brushes him off, he can't help but be disturbed at the thought.

Out on the search, Locke & Boone get to know one another. Boone is surprised to learn of Locke's meager existence in the real world -John Locke was a Regional Collections Supervisor for a box company. Meanwhile, Jack attempts to get to know Kate a little better, asking her to give him something honest for once and tell him where she picked up her tracking skills. Kate tells Jack that her father was in the army and that he taught her about tracking when they would go hiking together. And off that revelation about Kate's father, we go to -

-- a FLASHBACK with Jack's father, who encourages his son to sign off on the death report, which conveniently leaves out the part about his father's mistakes. Jack refuses to sign, insisting that his father was impaired, which is what ultimately led to the woman's death. Jack's father reminds him that he is on the hook too -Jack is the surgeon on record when the woman died. He begs his son not to contradict the report or mention anything about the involvement of alcohol - it would cost him his license. He further appeals to his son's emotions, telling him just what he wants to hear: he's been hard on him to make him the best surgeon in the city. Jack's father promises that it will never happen again and Jack signs the papers.

Back on the island, Sawyer goes to the caves to talk to Sayid. The hostility between them is still palpable and while we think Sawyer may have come for payback, we soon learn he's there to have some questions answered - what did Sayid find while he was away? Sayid shares information of the French woman and her team, but points out that what she said may or may not be true. Sawyer pushes for more information, but Sayid admits that he doesn't have the answers.

Back on the beach, Walt and Hurley play backgammon. The more Walt continues to win, the more his ability to "make things happen" becomes apparent. Hurley leaves in utter defeat and frustration.

Out in the jungle, Locke & Boone are hot on the trail. Locke senses that it's going to rain and warns Boone against impending danger ahead. He tries to convince him to go back to camp. But Boone refuses and follows Locke deeper into the jungle as it begins to pour. Meanwhile, Jack and Kate hear the roar of the monster as we --

-- FLASHBACK - to the hospital, where Jack sees his father conversing with the deceased woman's husband in the hallway. A nurse tells Jack that the man has threatened to sue. Jack watches his father work his persuasive magic and console the husband.

In real time, Jack and Kate run and are separated. Jack slips and slides down a bank into a puddle of mud and hits his head. He looks up to see Ethan standing over him. Ethan orders Jack to stop following him. But when Jack asks who he is and where Charlie and Claire are, Ethan delivers a healthy punch to Jack's face, knocking him back down. He tells Jack once again to stop following him or he'll kill one of his people. Jack attempts to fight him off, but Ethan is too strong and gains the upper hand, telling Jack this is his last warning and knocking him out. Kate finds Jack and suggests that Ethan may have been a hallucination - he fell pretty hard and banged his head. But Jack is sure Ethan was there and is now more determined than ever to find Charlie and Claire.

We FLASHBACK to a medical review board, where Jack's father details what happened during the fateful surgery. Jack can barely stomach listening to his father's lies. When he learns that the patient in question was pregnant, he can no longer hold his tongue and speaks out against his father, revising his statement to include the fact that his father was operating under the influence and severed the patient's artery. Jack's father stares at his son, shocked by this act of betrayal.

Back in the jungle, Jack and Kate come across Charlie, strung up by his neck, hanging from a tree limb. Jack tries to relieve his weight while Kate struggles to climb the tree and cut him down. She finally succeeds and Jack works to resuscitate him. It becomes increasingly clear that Charlie is gone and Kate has to pull Jack away - but Jack won't give up, and after beating on Charlie's chest, he gets him to breathe again.

Back at camp, Michael returns without success, disappointing Walt; Kate tells Shannon her brother is safe with Locke; and Jack tries to get Charlie to talk about what happened - but Charlie is experiencing a sort of shellshock and can only convey that all Ethan wanted was Claire.

Out in the jungle, Boone is ready to turn back, the bravado replaced by fear. But his mind changes when he and Locke make an extraordinary discovery - something metal embedded in the ground - and it's not a piece of the wreckage. Excited, Locke vows to find out exactly what it is.

Memorable QuotesEdit

"Ethan, that Canadian guy, he wasn't on the passenger manifest."

- Hurley

"So a tribe of evil natives planted a ringer in the camp to kidnap a pregnant girl and a reject from VH-1 has-beens. Yeah, fiendishly clever. And why am I getting the evening news from a 6 year old?"

- Sawyer


  • Typically, the resuscitation depicted in the operating room is incorrect. A condition of asystole (flat-line) is cardiac arrest, the lack of a heartbeat. The corrective action for that condition (in this situation) is a battery of drugs accompanied by cardiac compression, usually in the form of chest compressions, but with an open-heart surgery, could be direct caridac massage. The defibrillation by electric shock is only administered when the heart is fibrillation, which is a chaotic muscular action, not resulting in actual blood pumping. The defibrillating shock attempts to cause the heart to resume a normal sinus (wave-like) rhythm. Similarly, the fist-beating that Jack performs on Charlie when attempting to resuscitate him is a manual version of defibrillation called a "precordial thump" that "shocks" the heart through the quick energy transfer.

Background InformationEdit

  • The episode's title is derived from the Pete Townshend album All the Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes.

Dramatis PersonaeEdit

Guest StarringEdit