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Whatever the Case May Be
Season 1
Episode 12
Air Date January 5, 2005
Writer(s) Damon Lindelof
Jennifer Johnson
Director Jack Bender
Flashback Kate Austen

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Prev: All the Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues
Next: Hearts and Minds

Kate and Sawyer discover a suitcase while swimming, and the objects inside become the objects of obsession for the two. Sayid and Shannon attempt to make sense of Rousseau's documents.


Kate is out climbing trees for fruit when she runs into Sawyer. They walk through an unexplored part of the jungle, hear the sound of running water and come into a clearing to find a waterfall. They climb to the top and dive into the water to find that this lagoon is not as perfect as it looked. On the bottom, still strapped to their airplane seats, they find two bodies. Horrified, they surface, but Sawyer wants to dive back down and see if he can find any valuables. Kate spots a silver Halliburton case, which she brings up and claims as her own - however, she doesn't have the key, which leads Sawyer to believe otherwise. Kate attempts to act as if the case doesn't matter to her and hands it over to Sawyer.

Back at the beach, people scurry to salvage their belongings as the tide comes up and threatens the fuselage. Jack presses Sayid for information regarding the French woman. Sayid explains that he has to translate the maps and papers in order to make sense of anything. Meanwhile, on another part of the beach, Shannon interrogates Boone as to where he's been - he's been leaving everyday at sunrise and returning after dark. Boone claims he's been out looking for Claire and tells Shannon she's been absolutely useless.

As the sun sets on another day, Kate sits by the campfire, obviously disturbed that Sawyer has the Haliburton case and whatever it may hold. We FLASHBACK to find Kate at a bank, opening a new account, when three armed men enter and order everyone on the ground. Robber #1 tells the Bank Manager to open the money cage before people start getting killed.

Back on the island, Kate sneaks up on Sawyer in an attempt to lift the case out from under his legs. But Sawyer wakes up and grabs Kate in a leg lock. Kate gives him a head butt and escapes. She demands Sawyer hand over the Haliburton, but in typical Sawyer fashion, he refuses, now very intrigued by what this case means to Kate.

The next day, Sayid approaches Shannon as she lies on the beach sunbathing and requests her help in translating the papers he took from the French woman, Rousseau. And while she suspects Boone may have put Sayid up to it, she agrees to try in order to prove herself useful. Meanwhile, Sawyer attempts to pick the lock on the Haliburton. Michael and Hurley tell him how futile it is, but Sawyer claims he can pick the lock on anything. Michael tells him the only way to open it would be to hit it with something hard - like the axe…

…which Boone carries through the jungle, where he meets up with Locke. After convincing Locke that no one saw him take the axe, they head off on an unknown mission.

Sawyer attempts to smash the Halliburton open on a rock, but much to his frustration it still won't crack. He climbs to the top of a tree and drops it on some boulders. Suddenly, Kate comes sneaking out of the woods and grabs the case. Sawyer climbs down and gives chase, eventually catching up and tackling her to the ground. Sawyer promises that if she tells him what's inside the case, he'll hand it over. But Kate remains silent as we --

-- FLASHBACK to the bank, where the robbers are getting violent. A customer near Kate attempts to take out Robber #2, knocking his gun loose and sending it skidding across the floor, landing at Kate's feet. The customer yells at her to pick it up. Kate fumbles with the gun and claims she doesn't know how to use it. Robber #1 grabs her and forcefully leads her into the back room, where we learn that they are in cahoots together when they lock lips in a passionate kiss.

Back at the caves, Kate approaches Jack to ask for his help in getting the Haliburton from Sawyer. Kate suggests they dig up the Marshal's body in order to get the key from his wallet. She tells Jack that the case contains four, 9-millimeter guns, which would be dangerous for Sawyer to have in his possession. But Jack knows there's something more to the story - there always is with Kate. He senses there must be something very important to her in that case and agrees to help her on one condition - that once they get the key, they open it together.

This leads to another FLASHBACK to the back room of the bank, where in order to make it look good, Robber #1 slugs "Maggie" across the face. He pushes her out to the front and puts a gun to her head, threatening to pull the trigger if the Manager doesn't hand over the keys to the cage. The Manager finally gives in and they march him over to the money.

On the island, Kate and Jack continue digging, revolted by the stench. They reach the Marshal's body, where Kate reaches into his pocket and lifts out his wallet. She opens it, but drops it immediately when she sees that it's crawling with maggots. After Jack picks it up from the ground, he's quick to realize that Kate palmed the key. Angry with her for continuing to lie to him, Jack takes the key from her.

At the beach, Shannon continues her attempt to translate the papers, but Sayid is growing increasingly frustrated - the equations don't relate to her translations. All of the translations seem to be poetic or coded. Shannon suggests that the French woman may have been crazy after sixteen years alone on the island, which is why nothing makes sense. Sayid feels asking for Shannon's help may have been a mistake and when he verbalizes his regret, she picks up and leaves in a huff.

Meanwhile, Jack threatens to stop administering antibiotics to Sawyer if he doesn't give him the Haliburton. Sawyer reluctantly hands it over, but not before asking if Kate divulged the contents, to which Jack can only shake his head "no." Jack brings the case back to Kate and they begin to open it together, as agreed, when we --

-- FLASHBACK to the cage, where Robber #1 pockets bundles of cash. The Manager argues to let "the girl" go. But Robber #1 has different plans. He reveals that "the girl" is the mastermind behind the heist, before taking off his mask and aiming his gun at the Manager. Kate quickly spins and disarms Robber #2, leveling that gun on Robber #1 - "We said nobody gets hurt." But when Robber #1 continues advancing toward the Manager, Kate is forced to shoot him in the leg. The other Robbers react and each takes a bullet from Kate. Kate turns to the Manager and demands the keys to a particular Safety Deposit box. Robber #1 writhes on the ground, incredulous that Maggie would set them up. Kate responds, "My name's not Maggie". She gets the Manager's keys, and with her customer key, opens the box. Inside she finds a small green envelope.

Back on the island, Jack and Kate are about to open the Haliburton when Jack asks Kate if there is anything she wants to tell him first. When Kate says nothing, Jack proceeds to open the case. He pulls out the guns, the ammo and an envelope marked 'personal effects'. Kate takes it and opens it to find the smaller green envelope, which we recognize from the bank. She pulls out…a small toy airplane! Jack asks if that's what she was looking for and demands to know the truth. Kate claims the plane belonged to the man she loved, then breaks down and admits it belonged to the man she loved ... and killed. Angry and confused, Jack repacks the other contents into the case and leaves.

On the new beach, people have settled around scattered campfires for the evening. Shannon approaches Sayid and tells him that she realized the words from the papers were lyrics to a song… "Beyond the Sea." And as Shannon sings the hauntingly beautiful song in French, we pull back to reveal Boone, watching from the shadows.

At a separate campfire, Kate stares at the toy plane with a tear in her eye.

Memorable QuotesEdit

"Me Kate, me throw rock."

- Sawyer

"What? You smell blood on the wind?"

- Sawyer

"It belonged to the man I loved . . . it belonged to the man I killed!"

- Kate

Background InformationEdit

  • As part of a recurring theme, "815" is the safe deposit box that Kate needs access to.
  • The computer movie about fish Shannon mentions is Finding Nemo
  • The song Shannon sings is Charles Trenet's "La Mer".

Dramatis PersonaeEdit

Guest StarringEdit