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Dr. Jack Shephard is a fictional character on the ABC television series Lost played by Matthew Fox. Jack is the leader of the crash survivors and the main character of the series. He is the antithesis of John Locke (Terry O'Quinn) and the love interest of both Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly) and Juliet Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell). He is also the half-brother of fellow crash survivor Claire Littleton (Emilie de Ravin). He is often the rival of Sawyer (Josh Holloway) for both leadership of the survivors and the affections of Kate.

Biography

Prior to the crash

Jack is born into a successful family, with aspirations of following in the footsteps of his surgeon father. Jack attends Columbia University and graduates medical school a year faster than any of his classmates. Despite Jack's giftedness as a physician, he is haunted by his broken relationship with his father, an alcoholic whom had previously told Jack that he did not have what it takes to be a hero, as he would be unable to cope with failure. Early in his career as a spinal surgeon at St. Sebastian Hospital, Jack operates on a young girl and accidentally severs a nerve sac in her spine. Following a brief panic, his father urged him to count to five, after which time Jack regained focus and repaired the damage. While initially embarrassed that his father had undermined him during his first solo procedure, Jack later regards this as a pivotal point for him as someone in a leadership position, learning that fear is real, but it can only be allowed to affect him for a short period of time in order to regain control of a situation. Immediately after the operation, Jack has an exchange with Jacob (Mark Pellegrino), in which their hands touch briefly.

Jack later operates on Sarah (Julie Bowen), who had been involved in a car accident. Speaking to Sarah before the operation, he vows that despite the high likelihood of her becoming a paraplegic, he would "fix her." After the operation, during a tour de stade to relieve stress, he meets Desmond Hume (Henry Ian Cusick) for the first time. Returning to the hospital, Jack is surprised to discover that Sarah can move her toes. Following her recovery, the two marry. Sometime later, their marriage deteriorates and Sarah has an affair. Jack becomes obsessed with finding out the identity of Sarah's lover, even accusing his father and physically assaulting him at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. Jack is arrested and bailed out by Sarah, while his father relapses back into alcoholism, having achieved fifty days of sobriety.

Jack retreats to Phuket, Thailandmarker for months and becomes romantically involved with Achara (Bai Ling), a secretive tattoo artist with a supposed unique gift of seeing a person's true self. Achara calls Jack a great leader who is angry and lonely as a result. Jack demands a tattoo of his description; Achara reluctantly agrees, but warns that there will be consequences. The next morning, Jack is mysteriously beaten by locals and banished. Jack returns to the United States and resumes his surgeon duties. On one occasion, he relieves his father during an operation; however, his drunken father had already cause irreparable damage to the pregnant woman and the unborn baby is lost. Christian initially persuades Jack to sign a report and ignore his intoxication, but Jack changes his mind, exposing his father as a chronic alcoholic and shattering Christian's career. Two months later, Jack's mother Margo (Veronica Hamel) orders him to find and return Christian, who had exiled himself in Australia. Jack travels to Sydneymarker and discovers that his father has died of a heart attack from his alcohol abuse. Jack boards Oceanic Airlines Flight 815 bound for Los Angeles on September 22, 2004 with his father's casket in the cargo hold of the plane.

After the crash

Season 1

On the island, Jack plays a key role in the survival of his fellow survivors in the immediate aftermath of the crash, instructing others to help those with injuries. On their sixth day on the island, he rescues Boone Carlyle (Ian Somerhalder) from drowning but feels guilty for being unable to also save Joanna Miller. The survivors almost immediately look to Jack as their leader; however, he is reluctant to embrace the position. Deprived of sleep, Jack begins to chase what he believes are hallucinations of his father in the jungle. He finds his father's coffin in the caves, but it is empty. Still struggling to cope with demands of him by the castaways, he meets fellow survivor John Locke (Terry O'Quinn) in the jungle, who provides some guidance for Jack's leadership. He gives a speech on how they are going to live on the island and informs them of the caves; one part of his speech — "live together, die alone" —would come to be a mantra of him and occasionally, other survivors. However, during an argument with Charlie Pace (Dominic Monaghan), he is caught in a cave-in. Charlie comes to his rescue, and helps him escape. Since then, Jack deals with the survivors' illnesses up until Claire Littleton (Emilie de Ravin) and Charlie's abduction by Ethan Rom (William Mapother). Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly) and Jack follow Ethan's path until they find and save Charlie.

Later, Locke brings an unconscious Claire to Jack. Jack fills her in about the events since the flight. That night, one of the survivors, Scott, is murdered by Ethan, and with the guns from the briefcase, and Claire as (willing) bait, Jack, Kate, Locke, Sayid and Sawyer set a trap. Ethan enters the trap, and Jack is forced to fight him and subdues him. Although the plan is to keep Ethan alive, a vengeful Charlie fires four rounds into his chest and kills him with a gun that Jack had dropped during the fight. Later, Locke brings a critically injured Boone to the caves, and Jack and Sun work into the night to try and save him. The next morning, Jack informs Shannon of her brother's demise.

The next day, Sayid Jarrah (Naveen Andrews) takes Jack to the hatch, discovered by Locke. Later one morning Danielle Rousseau (Mira Furlan) arrives at the beach to warn the survivors that The Others are coming, and tells them more of her own story. Later, a column of black smoke is seen in the distance. Jack and the others show Rousseau the hatch, and tell her of their need to open it, perhaps with dynamite. Rousseau offers to take them to a wooden shipwreck, the Black Rock, which is a British slaving ship that was found inland on the Island. She takes Jack, Kate, Locke, Hugo "Hurley" Reyes (Jorge Garcia) and Dr. Arzt (Daniel Roebuck) to the Black Rock, in order to gather some dynamite. They eventually make their way to the Black Rock. Rousseau departs, and Jack, Kate, and Locke enter the ship through a hole in the side. While attempting to handle some of the volatile dynamite carefully, Arzt triggers one of the sticks and blows himself up. The remaining survivors leave the ship with several sticks of dynamite. On their way back to the hatch, Locke is attacked by a cloud of smoke, but Jack and Kate save him by throwing dynamite down the hole into which Locke is being pulled. They later arrive at the hatch, and manage to set the dynamite up on the hinge, and set it off.

Season 2

Jack declines to descend the hatch, telling Locke and Kate not to enter. After they disobey his orders and enter, Jack follows after them, where he discovers Locke being held hostage by Desmond, who had been living in the hatch for the past three years. He shows the three of them an orientation video, but flees when Kate damages the computer. Following Desmond's departure, Jack and Locke set up a rotating shift for certain survivors to enter the code into the computer. One day, while Jack and Kate spend a day playing golf, they encounter Mr. Eko carrying a critically injured Sawyer. They take them into the hatch, where Jack plots revenge for Shannon's death, but changes his mind when he learns more about the accident.

Jack finds Locke unconscious in the hatch armory. As he enters, Michael Dawson (Harold Perrineau) confronts him, armed with weapons as he leaves to search for his son. Jack, Locke and Sawyer pursue him, only to encounter the Others, who hold Kate hostage and ransom her for their weapons. Jack, enraged with Kate, ignores her during their return to the beach. Meanwhile, Danielle reveals that she caught a member of the Others. Jack, Locke and Sayid bring captured man, named Henry Gale (Michael Emerson), into the hatch and interrogate him. During the subsequent interrogations, Gale toys with Jack and Locke's grudge, frequently pitting them against each other, before Sayid, Ana Lucia and Charlie expose Henry as an imposter.

Jack and Kate decide to approach the Others to trade Henry for Walt Lloyd (Malcolm David Kelley). They find a wounded and exhausted Michael who stumbles from the bushes. As Jack asks Sawyer for the guns, he learns about Ana Lucia's intention to kill Henry. Jack, Kate, Locke and Sawyer rush to the hatch to discover Ana Lucia dead, with Michael and Libby (Cynthia Watros) severely injured from gunshot wounds. Following Libby's death, he agrees to follow Michael to the Others' camp. The group departs the next day, having been cautioned by a wary Sayid that Michael may be a traitor. On the way to the camp, Jack, Kate, Sawyer and Hurley are surprised and gagged and taken to the pier in restraints. Hurley is freed and ordered to return to the survivors as a warning, and Jack witnesses Michael and Walt leaving the island aboard a boat.

Season 3

Jack finds himself held in a room with a glass wall, where he is questioned by Juliet Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell). Jack refuses to cooperate with her or Ben (aka "Henry Gale"), almost flooding the hatch. On his second day as captive, Juliet seeks his medical expertise to operate on Colleen, but she flat lines and dies on the table. After attending the funeral, Ben reveals that he wants him to operate on him, to which Jack refuses. Juliet wants Kate to talk to Jack to ask him to do the surgery or they will kill Sawyer. After seeing Kate and Sawyer together in the cages, he reluctantly agrees. Under Juliet's secret instruction, during the operation Jack deliberately slices open Ben's kidney, and holds Ben hostage until Kate and Sawyer escape. After a discussion with Juliet and Ben, Jack resumes and completes the surgery. He succeeds in sparing Juliet execution for killing one of her own, and is taken back to the Others' barracks.

Jack appears to have bonded with some of the Others during his time there, particularly Juliet. When Kate attempts to rescue him, Jack warns her that he is under surveillance, and later admits that he has struck a deal to go home. However, Locke thwarts his plans by destroying the submarine. Later, Jack is knocked out by nerve gas, and is later found by Kate. Noticing the barracks completely abandoned, Jack, Kate, Sayid and Juliet return to the beach. Jack remains protective of Juliet, and intervenes whenever Sayid attempts to interrogate her. Later, Jack and Juliet learn of the arrival of Naomi Dorrit (Marsha Thomason). Soon after, Jack and Juliet head into the jungle to seek Rousseau's help, and ask her to retrieve some dynamite.

Upon returning to the beach, Jack and Juliet walk in on a camp meeting, who are now aware of Juliet's purpose for being amongst them. However, Jack leads them into the jungle the next day to reveal their true intentions; to rig the targeted tents with dynamite in order to destroy the Others when they invade the camp the following night. Jack allows Sayid, Jin-Soo Kwon (Daniel Dae Kim) and Bernard to remain behind while he leads everyone else to the radio tower. They witness the plan backfire that night, but Jack insists they press on. He eventually encounters Ben and Alex (Tania Raymonde) in the jungle, to which Ben tricks Jack into thinking that Sayid, Jin and Bernard are dead. Jack takes Ben hostage again, and takes him with them to the tower. After Locke apparently kills Naomi, Jack uses her satellite phone to make contact with her freighter.

Season 4

They eventually meet the other survivors at the cockpit; Jack attacks Locke and aims a gun at his head. When Kate returns with news of Naomi's death, Locke explains that they need to hide, some of the survivors, head off with Locke to hide in the Barracks, Jack and Kate stay to wait for the helicopter.

When it arrives and a Daniel Faraday (Jeremy Davies) parachutes out, Jack and Kate run into the jungle and meet him. When he and Kate discover a metal case from Daniel's helicopter containing HAZMAT suits and gas masks, Daniel admits that rescuing them is not their primary objective. Jack, Kate, and Daniel then go to meet one of Daniel's teammates, Miles Straume (Ken Leung), who immediately draws his gun on Jack and accuses him of killing Naomi. When Jack and Kate take them to Naomi's body, Miles accepts that Naomi was killed by Locke. They then pick up the signal of a third teammate, Charlotte Lewis (Rebecca Mader), whom Locke has taken prisoner. They find the team's pilot, Frank Lapidus (Jeff Fahey), who takes them to the helicopter. Miles reveals to Jack, Kate, Sayid, and Juliet that their real mission is to find Ben. Later, he and Juliet pursue Daniel and Charlotte when they run off to find the Tempest.

Juliet convinces Jack and Kate that Daniel and Charlotte just saved their lives. Later, Juliet explains to Jack that a war is coming between the freighter crew and Ben, and that she believes that Ben will win. Later, Jack begins to suffer from mysterious stomach pains, while he and the other survivors discover a body that has washed ashore. Faraday claims that it is the body of the Kahana's doctor, Ray (Marc Vann). Jack, still suffering from his stomach pain, then forces Faraday to reveal that the Kahana's crew never had any intention of rescuing the survivors.

In the next episode Something Nice Back Home, Jack falls ill with an appendix about to rupture. Juliet claims she has to perform basic surgery on him, and he agrees. The surgery is a success, and as Juliet sews the wound up, Kate chats with her while Jack is asleep. Juliet reveals to her that Jack kissed her, but he still loves Kate. Kate thanks her for saving his life, and exits. Juliet then tells Jack she knows he is feigning sleep, to which Jack responds by merely opening his eyes, a solemn expression on his face.

Later on, Jack refuses to listen to Juliet about being stationary and gets food. Then, a helicopter flies above, dropping a bag and a satellite phone in the process. This is Lapidus's message telling the survivors to hide, but Jack misinterprets it; he thinks they are to follow the chopper. He heads off with Kate. They encounter Sawyer, Aaron, and Miles, learns what happened to Claire and the true motives of the freighter, and the groups split. Jack and Sawyer head off to face Charles Widmore's assault team and rescue Hurley, while the rest returns to the beach. Jack is determined to get all his survivors off the island. The two then arrive at the Orchid Station, where Jack once more argues with Locke regarding the island. Locke orders that should Jack truly leave: he should lie about the entire plane crash incident so as to protect the island. Ben arrives to proceed moving the island with Locke, and at the same time wishes Jack a safe journey home. Jack, Hurley, and Sawyer go back to the helicopter, where Martin Keamy (Kevin Durand) and his team have already been defeated by Ben's team. Five of the Oceanic Six, as well as Lapidus and Sawyer, fly off the island without looking back.

The chopper heads toward the freighter, but a bullet hole on the side of the aircraft causes a fuel leak. Sawyer, wanting to take off the extra hundred pounds to allow the chopper to say airborne, kisses Kate, making Jack somewhat jealous. Sawyer then jumps off into the ocean and swims back to the island. Jack promises Kate they will return for him.

On the freighter, Desmond tries to prevent the chopper from landing, since there is a time bomb on the ship. Jack helps pump fuel onto the chopper, but only a limited number of people can go on. The ship explodes, seemingly killing Michael and Jin, leaving Sun-Hwa Kwon (Yunjin Kim) distraught. The chopper then starts to swerve, and then attempts to land on the island, according to orders by Jack. But the Island disappears, and the passengers take refuge on an inflatable raft. Hurley remarks Locke succeeded on moving the Island, but Jack angrily disagrees. When Penny Widmore's (Sonya Walger) rescue ship arrives, Jack orders everyone to lie about the crash, just as Locke told him to do. When Kate is skeptical, Jack claims he will do all the talking. They spend a week on the ship, and then the Oceanic Six head off towards another island inhabited by villagersmarker. Before leaving the ship, Jack jokes to Lapidus that he hopes that he will never see him again. He also gives a fond farewell to Desmond, repeating the latter's catch-phrase "I'll see you in another life, brother." As the survivors make their way towards civilization, Jack exclaims, "Let's go home."

After the Island

After reaching shore, Jack agrees to a press conference since the Oceanic 6 were all aware of the cover story. Jack reunites with his mother and begins a relationship with Kate. Kate was raising Aaron as her own. The relationship ends when Claire's mother comes to visit him and tells him that Claire was on Flight 815. There he was told that Claire's father was Christian Shephard, which made Claire Jack's half-sister. Due to Aaron being his nephew, he wasn't comfortable being around Aaron any longer.

Sometime after leaving the Island, Jack is mixing a drink in his apartment, when he sees a car chase on television. He recognizes the pursued as Hurley. Shortly after that, Jack goes to Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute to check on Hurley's mental condition and starts playing a game of HORSE. Jack asks Hurley if he was "going to tell." Jack then gets his coat and proceeds to leave. Hurley then apologizes to Jack and said that he was sorry that he went with Locke instead of him, and Jack accepts his apology. Hurley finally asks Jack if leaving the Island was a mistake since it keeps calling to him, and Jack responds, "We're never going back!" Hurley then says, "Never say never, dude."

Jack takes the stand as a character witness in Kate's trial and testifies that she saved him and eight others including the surviving Oceanic Six. He becomes very emotional on the stand and under cross examination by the prosecution says that he does not love Kate anymore. After Kate's mother refuses to testify against Kate, she is released on a plea deal and is leaving the courthouse when she is confronted by Jack. Again, emotional, he says that he was lying under oath and that he still loves her. She asks him if he wants to follow her, come by for a visit, but he makes an excuse to get to the hospital but he asks if she would be willing to go out with him. Kate gives an exasperated look and tells him that he has to see her son. However she does tell him to come over whenever he feels like seeing her and the baby.

Later, Jack has gotten over his hesitation, and is seen living in a relationship with Kate. He is also acting as a stepfather for his nephew Aaron, showing that Jack changed his mind about not wanting to see the child. Later, he asks Kate to marry him, which she happily accepts. A series of mysterious events then happen. While visiting Hurley again, Hurley claims that he has been having talks with Charlie, who left a message for Jack. The message is "You're not supposed to raise him", apparently referring to Aaron. Later, while leaving work, Jack briefly sees his father in the waiting room of the hospital. Thoroughly distressed, Jack asks one of his colleagues to write him a prescription for the drug Hurley is taking, Clonazepam (brand name Klonopin), which she does. Jack is seen starting to take pills and drinking. He later confronts Kate, who has been acting mysterious, and she admits that she is doing favors for Sawyer, who is still on the island. During this argument between the two, Jack, by accident, blurts out that Aaron is not even related to Kate, which Aaron overhears. Jack then leaves in shame.

Sometime later, John Locke ends up in the hospital where Jack Shephard works, after being in a car accident. Locke tries to convince Jack to return to the island by telling him that bad things had happened since leaving the island and that it is Jack's fault for leaving. However, Locke was unsuccessful at the time. It isn't until sometime later that Jack realizes they all have to return to the island. Shortly after this Locke dies, under the alias of Jeremy Bentham.

Three years have passed since leaving the island and Jack is now separated from Kate and has become a drug-addicted alcoholic. He has sunk into despair, desperately trying to get back to the Island to help the people on it as Bentham told him to do. While on a plane, he finds Locke's obituary in a newspaper, and is obviously deeply disturbed by it. Once he has landed, he takes his car and drives up on a bridge. He looks at the obituary again, and starts to cry. He gets out of the car and climbs on top of the ledge of the bridge, meaning to jump. Just before he can jump off the bridge, however, a car crashes and he rescues a woman and her son from the wreckage. Back in the hospital, he encounters his pregnant ex-wife, Sarah, since her name was still listed as his Emergency Contact. The next day, Jack wants to perform back surgery on the woman from the car accident, but the Chief of Surgery, Dr. Hamill, gently rebuffs him and tells him to rest at home.

Jack then goes to a funeral of Locke and is the only person to show up. He chooses not to view his body. Later he attempts to fill a prescription for Oxycodone; however the prescription is out of refills. Jack pulls out a new prescription and after reviewing it, the pharmacist tells him that he cannot prescribe medicine for himself. He then unsuccessfully tries to explain that it was written for him by his father, also a doctor. She again refuses to fill it. Visibly frustrated, Jack staggers out, knocking over several displays in the process. He then returns to the hospital and steals several small packages of Oxycodone. Confronted by Dr. Hamill, Jack is informed that the woman has awoken from her surgery and had divulged the reason for the accident: she saw a man standing on the bridge railing, about to jump. Upon being accused of being drunk, Jack tells the Chief to get his father so that he can see which Shephard is more drunk.

Jack leaves angrily and returns to his apartment, a mess with dozens of maps of what appears to be the Pacific Ocean and many items that are marked "Oceanic". He then calls Kate, asking her to meet him at the airport. After meeting Kate, he tells her about the funeral, and she claims that there was no reason for her to be there. He then explains, out of nowhere, that he has been flying across the Pacific Oceanmarker every Friday, and coming back, (using a "Golden Pass" provided by Oceanic Airlines), hoping that the plane will crash. Distraught, Jack tells her that it was a mistake to leave the island, that they "were not supposed" to leave the island and that they have to go back. She disagrees and, crying and visibly distraught, comments that "he's going to be wondering where I am" and gets back into her car and drives off into the night. A passenger jet soars off overhead as Jack yells after her "We have to go back!" Kate then stops her car, gets out and begins to yell at Jack for abandoning her and Aaron. She tells Jack that Bentham visited her as well and heard what he had to say, but she knew he was crazy and did not take his advice. She says that there is no reason to go back, and then departs, leaving Jack alone.

Later, Jack breaks into the funeral home from before and opens the coffin containing the body of Locke, but he is interrupted by Ben. Ben tells him that he heard about how Jack had been flying and trying to crash on the Island, and that this is "Very dark, Jack". He tells him that this won't work because [the survivors] all have to "go back together". He also asks Jack if he has spoken to "him", and Jack said he did and told Ben what Bentham told him. Jack also responds by saying it would be practically impossible to get the other survivors together, but Ben says he can help. Just as the two are about to leave, Ben reminds him that they will need all the survivors to go back including Locke's body.

Return to the Island

Season 5

Now convinced of the need to return to the island, Jack forges an alliance with Ben. Shaving his face clean and coming off his medication, Jack then prepares to attempt to persuade the rest of the Oceanic Six to return.

When Sayid is attacked and tranquilized, Hurley brings Sayid to Jack, who treats him in the hospital. Jack recognises that Sayid's attacker has Kate's address in his pocket; Jack meets Kate and warns her, whereaupon he learns of the apparent plot to take Aaron from Kate. The truth is later uncovered when he, Kate, and Sayid meet Ben, who reveals he was behind the scheme in order to convince Kate to go back to the island. Jack is horrified, and protests his innocence. Furious, Sayid departs; having believed Jack to be in league with Ben's plan, he warns Jack he never wants to see him again. Kate also leaves.

When Sun prepares to kill Ben, Ben states that Jin is alive and he can prove it. He drives to see Daniel Faraday's mother (Eloise Hawking), and during the trip, Sun repeats her threat to kill Ben if he is lying. Jack tells Sun that if she doesn't do it, he will, after what happened to Kate. Arriving at the place where Eloise is, Jack and Sun are shocked to find another DHARMA station, the "Lamppost". Eloise explains that the purpose of the station is to predict the location of the island as it is "always moving", leaving brief windows of entry; furthermore, she reveals to Jack that Ajira Airways flight 316 will pass over the entry window and he and his friends must be on the flight. Eloise then tells Jack in private that Locke committed suicide so as to be a "proxy" for Jack; a substitute for Jack's dead father. She tells him that to return to the island, the conditions must match those as three years ago as closely as possible. She then says that Jack must give Locke something of his fathers, which at the time means nothing to him.

Returning home, Jack discovers Kate in his room, and she asks if he is still going. The two then kiss and sleep together. The next day Jack boards Ajira Airways Flight 316 to Guam along with Kate, Hurley, Sun, Ben and a handcuffed Sayid. Flight 316 is piloted by none other than Frank Lapidus.

Then there is turbulence and a flash of light that struck the plane.

1977

Jack wakes up in the jungle, and finds Hurley and Kate nearby. They are discovered by Jin who takes them to Sawyer and they are reunited. Sawyer explains it is 1977 and he, Jin, Faraday, Miles and Juliet have joined the Dharma Initiative. Sawyer pretends that Jack, Kate and Hurley were new recruits from the Sub and they join the Dharma Initiative. Jack learns of Sawyer and Juliet's relationship. The next day Sayid is found in the jungle and Sawyer lets everyone think he is a hostile. Sayid shoots the 12 year old Ben Linus and Jack refuses to save his life so Sawyer and Kate take matters into their own hands and save Ben by delivering him into the clutches of Richard Alpert and the Others.

When Daniel Faraday returns to the Island, he reveals his plan to reset the survivor's history by detonating a hydrogen bomb, Jughead, beneath what will soon be the Swan Station. If he is successful, then Flight 815 will never crash. Believing this to be his destiny, Jack agrees to aid him in his mission. However, this plan is put in jeopardy when Daniel is killed by Eloise Hawking. Knowing that Daniel was her future son, she agrees to help Jack detonate the hydrogen bomb.

With the help of Hawking, Sayid and Richard Alpert, Jack locates the hydrogen bomb and is preparing to transport the nuclear core of it to the Swan Station. Sawyer, Kate, and Juliet confront him about his decision. Jack tells Sawyer that one of his motives for resetting history is because he lost Kate. Sawyer is enraged with Jack's reasoning, and starts a fistfight to stop Jack. However, Juliet intervenes, and everyone agrees to tentatively accept Jack's plan of action. With their help, Jack manages to drop the bomb into the Swan Station, but with no visible effect. His plan destroyed, Jack has no choice but to flee from the ensuing carnage as the Station falls apart of its own nature.

However, Juliet is sucked into the wreckage, where she finds the undetonated hydrogen bomb, and strikes it with a rock until it detonates, leaving the fate of the survivors open to speculation. In 2007, when asked by Sun, Richard Alpert told her that "he watched (her friends) all die".

Personality

Throughout the series, it has been stated numerous times that Jack is a natural leader. This has been demonstrated many times by his ability to think quickly and analyze crisis situations. Jack intentionally represses many of his emotions of fear and anxiety, usually in order to remain strong for the other crash survivors, as he is the one they turn to during crises. Initially, he rejects claims of many of his fellow survivors, such as Rose Nadler and John Locke, who believe they are on the Island for a reason and that the Island has mystic properties. He does this to not give his fellow survivors false hope. On the Island, Jack also seems to repress his deep love for Kate Austen, which he has only twice ever fully admitted to, and even then only once in a very emotional tone of voice. However, after escaping from The Island, Jack and Kate admit their love, move in together, and raise a child.Jack's habit of repression sometimes does flare out, usually in his propensity to become violent when he is enraged. He is also prone to become highly obsessive and willing to do anything to help the survivors, even if it's to his detriment. Jack is deep down a very caring person and has sacrificed himself for his crashmates several times. After being rescued, he sinks into alcoholism and drug abuse out of severe depression. He blamed himself for leaving almost all the fellow survivors behind while he was safely rescued. This leads to his delusions that his father is still alive and a suicide attempt, which indicate that Jack has not been completely able to cope with what happened on the island. Digital Spy's Ben Rawson-Jones marked a "difference in the characterisation of Jack [who] has become known as the trustworthy, honest type since Oceanic Flight 815 crashed, so his blatant lies about the island under oath were definitely dramatic."Rawson-Jones, Ben, (February 24, 2008) "[http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/cult/a90097/s04e04-eggtown.html S04E04: 'Eggtown']", ''[[Digital Spy]]''. Retrieved on June 16, 2008. After being rescued, seeing visions of his father, and being visited by John Locke, Jack's outlook underwent a fundamental change. He began to believe in fate and destiny. When Juliet asked Jack why he had returned to the island, Jack told her "because I was meant to". Jack's personality still retains his self-confidence, assuredness, and change which can be likened to resemble the position of John Locke in the period when Jack was the leader, but this time Sawyer is the one doing the calculating and leading. == Development == In the original outline of Lost, Jack was going to be killed halfway through the first episode. Lost creator [[J. J. Abrams]] was interested in [[Michael Keaton]] for the role, as Abrams wanted to work with him. However scripts were never even sent to him, as the character was made into a regular, and Keaton wasn’t interested in a series. The producers felt that if the audience became attached to the character during the first episode, and then he was killed, they might resent the show. His death was meant to shock the audience so they would never know what would happen next. The role ended up going to Matthew Fox, who was “very excited” about it, as it was the genre and tone he was looking for."Before They Were Lost". ''[[Lost (season 1)#DVD release|Lost: The Complete First Season]]'', [[Buena Vista Home Entertainment]]. September 6, 2005. [[Featurette]], disc 7. === Tattoos === For story purposes, the tattoos on Jack's arm read: "He walks among us, but he is not one of us." Revealed in "Stranger in a Strange Land", the ninth episode of the third season. [[Matthew Fox (actor)|Matthew Fox]] however has had these tattoos since before he started on ''Lost''. The producers considered putting make-up over them, but instead, decided just to keep them and fit it in with the plot.''[[Lost (TV series) DVD releases#Season 2|Lost: The Complete Second Season – The Extended Experience]]'', [[Buena Vista Home Entertainment]]. September 5, 2006. [http://www.amazon.com/dp/customer-images/B000FIMG68/?index=1 Back cover]. According to Assistant Professor Xinping Zhu of [[Northeastern University]], the tattoo is made up of four [[Chinese character]]s from a poem written by [[Mao Zedong]] in 1925, and the [[Kataeb Party|Lebanese Phalangist]] symbol. Fox's tattoo translates to "Eagles high up, cleaving the space".{{cite web |url=http://www.ece.neu.edu/~xzhu/lost_tatoo.html |title=Meaning of Tattoos on Jack Shepard (Matthew Fox) 's Left Arm in ABC Show "LOST" |accessdate=2008-07-24 |last=Zhu |first=Xinping |coauthors= |date= |work= |publisher=Electrical and Computer Engineering Department of [[Northeastern University]]}} On Fox's forearm is the [[5 (number)|number 5]], which he got while working on ''[[Party of Five]]'' along with another cast member.{{cite web |url=http://www.tvsquad.com/2005/09/24/watercooler-talk-jacks-tattoos/ |title=Watercooler Talk: Jack's Tattoos |accessdate=2008-07-24 |last=Segrest |first=Jen |coauthors= |date= |work= |publisher=[[TV Squad]]}} In an interview, Fox said that for him, getting a tattoo was a "pretty intense experience", and something he would not do in the "spur of the moment". He thought Jack having tattoos was a "really cool idea".{{cite web |url=http://www.lostpedia.com/wiki/Official_Lost_Podcast_transcript/February_27%2C_2007 |title=Official ''Lost'' Podcast transcript/February 27, 2007 |accessdate=2008-07-24 |date=2007-02-27 |publisher=[[Lostpedia]]}} Since Fox used tattoos to represent memories or meaningful events in his life, the writers took a similar approach when dealing with Jack's tattoos.{{cite web |url=http://www.tvsquad.com/2007/02/28/lost-audio-podcast-recap-february-26-2007/ |title=''Lost'' Audio Podcast Recap: February 26, 2007|author=Martell, Erin|accessdate=2008-08-14 |date=2007-02-28 |publisher=[[TV Squad]]}} == Reception == ''[[BuddyTV]]'' praised Matthew Fox's lead role performance in "[[Through the Looking Glass (Lost)|Through the Looking Glass]]" as "Emmy worthy"Dahl, Oscar, (May 29, 2007):[http://www.buddytv.com/articles/lost/lost-season-finale-thoughts-fr-6993.aspx|Lost: Season Finale Thoughts from a Non-Expert]" ''[[BuddyTV]]''. Retrieved on July 6, 2007. ''[[The San Diego Union-Tribune]]'''s Karla Peterson praised Fox's work in "[[Something Nice Back Home]]",Peterson, Karla, (May 2, 2008) "[http://weblog.signonsandiego.com/tvtracker/archives/022862.html ''Lost'': 'Something Nice Back Home']", ''[[The San Diego Union-Tribune]]''. Retrieved on May 6, 2008. ''[[The Palm Beach Post]]'''s Kevin Thompson "thought [that] Matthew [Fox] did a nice job conveying a wide range of emotions—scared, haunted, frustration, jealousy, just to name a few" in the same episode.

Matthew Fox won a Satellite Award for Best Actor in a Dramatic Television Series for his role as Jack in 2004. He was nominated for a Golden Globe in 2006 for Best Actor in a television series - Drama and a Television Critics Association award in 2005 for Individual Achievement in Drama. He has also won two Saturn awards, including Best Actor on Television in 2005 and Best Actor in a Television Program in 2007.

References


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