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Dr. Juliet Burke (née Carlson) is a fictional character on the ABC television series Lost played by Elizabeth Mitchell. Her character was introduced in the third season premiere.

Character's background

Prior to arrival on the island

Before coming to the island, Dr. Juliet Burke lived in Miamimarker near her sister Rachel's apartment. Juliet was working for her ex-husband Edmund Burke as a fertility scientist at Miami Central University. While there, Edmund bullied an acquiescent Juliet and flaunted his sexual conquests. Despite her docile nature, Juliet, alluding to her ends justify the means philosophy, was performing unauthorized experiments on her sister, Rachel. Rachel's reproductive system had been ravaged by chemotherapy, rendering her sterile. Juliet was attempting to restore her fertility.

In 2001 she was approached and offered a job with Mittelos Bioscience. Alleging her ex-husband would never allow her to leave, Juliet jokingly asserted that she would not be able to accept the job offer unless he were hit by a bus. When Juliet returned home, her sister revealed to her that she was pregnant, prompting Juliet to locate and inform Edmund. After receiving the news, Edmund stepped off the sidewalk and onto the street, only to be hit by a bus. Edmund died from the injuries, and the representative from the company who had interviewed her earlier, Richard Alpert, showed up at the morgue with Ethan Rom. They expressed their condolences and again asked her to join their company. Juliet accepted. Soon after this, Rachel's cancer went into remission.

Upon arriving for her new career at Mittelos, Juliet became surprised at the amount of secrecy involved — not even knowing the location of where she would work. Juliet then entered a van and was driven to an airfield, where Richard Alpert gave her orange juice that he admitted was filled with tranquilizer. Sensing reservation on Juliet's part, Richard revealed that her expertise as a fertility specialist — especially her miraculous treatment of her sister — was the reason for her recruitment, promising that there were things on the island that she could only dream about. Persuaded, Juliet drank the juice and quickly fell unconscious.

On the island, prior to the crash

Juliet awakened aboard the Others' submarine, strapped down for safety. She was freed by Ethan and then disembarked to the island where she met Ben. A week after she arrived on the island, in mid-September 2001, she began therapy with the Others' resident psychologist, Dr. Harper Stanhope. Their first discussion was cut short when Ben presented her with a newly furnished house in the Barracks. Juliet was very appreciative, but protested that she was only going to be on the island for six months. Ben brushed off this fact. Later, in the Staff, she met Goodwin, who was attempting to find ointment for a chemical burn on his arm. It later became apparent that Goodwin was Harper's estranged husband.

For the next three years, she treated pregnant mothers per Ben's orders, but with uniformly fatal results. At some point she also began an affair with Goodwin. Harper later found out about their relationship, and confronted Juliet in one of their sessions. However, instead of being angry at Juliet, she offered her a warning. If their relationship did not end, then there will be consequences, not from her, but from Ben. It was then made clear that Ben has a crush on Juliet.

Later she was discouraged by the lack of results in her work, but was forced to remain on the island "until her work is done." Juliet sought to return to her sister Rachel, but Ben revealed that her cancer had returned — she would be dead before Juliet arrived. However, he promised that if Juliet stayed, he would cure Rachel's cancer. She accepted this, but became suspicious of Ben when she discovered his spinal tumor on an x-ray. She then confronted him, upset over his deception about no one on the island getting cancer. She tearfully asked to go home to her dying sister — whom she believed was never going to be cured — but Ben refused to let her go, creating hostility.

The next day, a distraught Juliet prepared to host a book club when she was visited by Amelia. Just as she was about to show her the contents of a hidden envelope, the rest of the book club arrived. While discussing Carrie, Juliet and the rest of the Others witnessed Oceanic Flight 815 breaking up in the air and crashing on the island.

Following the crash

Immediately after the crash, Ben sends Ethan and Goodwin to investigate the crash and infiltrate any survivors. After exchanging a meaningful look with Harper, it becomes apparent to Juliet that Ben sent Goodwin in order to get him out of the way. Ben then takes Juliet with him to see Mikhail at the Flame, who opens a live satellite connection to North America, where her seemingly healthy sister is shown playing with her now two-year-old son, Julien. Juliet breaks down crying and begs Ben to let her return home, but again Ben refuses.

Several weeks later, Ben invites Juliet to his house, under the pretense of having a dinner party, however, it turns out to be a date. Juliet asks Ben about Goodwin, and Ben attempts to sow discord between the two by implying that Goodwin is interested in a relationship with Ana-Lucia Cortez. Ben also gives Juliet his thanks for how she has consoled tail section survivor's Zach and Emma. Several days later, Ben leads Juliet into the woods and they eventually come upon Goodwin's impaled corpse. Juliet is deeply distressed, and accuses Ben of wanting Goodwin to die. Ben does not deny this, and Juliet asks why he wanted Goodwin to die. Ben becomes upset, telling her that she should know why. He goes on to state that it is because "You're mine." His attitude then abruptly changes, and he informs Juliet that she should take as much time as she needs with the corpse, and leaves her alone, even more distressed and upset.

Later, Juliet and Ben enter the Pearl station, where they watch Jack from one of the monitors. Juliet mentions that she thinks Jack is cute. She soon questions Ben's motives for the planned kidnapping of Jack, to which he reveals his methods of persuasion. They leave shortly after, leaving behind a radio, which is picked up by Paulo.

When Michael is in captivity, Juliet visits him and informs him that the Others have granted him a boat to leave the island. She also comments on how Walt is "special." Later, Juliet tells Ben how dangerous Walt is becoming when he does something in "Room 23". Ben tells Juliet that he's only a child, but Juliet then takes Ben to a pile of dead birds and tells him that no child would do that.

Season 3

Juliet is assigned to interrogate a captured Jack in the underwater section of the Hydra station. At first, Jack refuses to cooperate, almost flooding the room, but Juliet manages to break through to him. She mostly brings him his food, but when she is called in to operate on Colleen, she soon seeks Jack's help. Colleen dies, and Juliet attends the funeral, where Ben asks her why she showed Jack his x-rays. When she is told to convince Jack to operate on Ben, she plays Jack a video of her holding up cue-cards, telling Jack to "accidentally" kill Ben during surgery. When a desperate Jack holds Ben hostage during surgery and angrily reveals Juliet's plan, she claims Jack is bluffing. Ben wakes up during surgery and bargains with her to help Kate and Sawyer escape in exchange for her freedom off the island. She finds them held at gunpoint by Pickett, and kills him on the spot. She is then tried for her crime, but via a deal made by Jack, is spared execution by Ben. Instead, she is marked on her lower back and treated by Jack before returning to the barracks.

Since returning, and after the capture of Kate and Sayid, Ben instructs her to infiltrate the survivors' camp in order to gain information on Kate, as well as other potentially pregnant women. She is then handcuffed to Kate and placed in the jungle, where she pretends to have been gassed and abandoned with her. However, after being chased by the "Monster", Juliet unlocks the handcuffs, and shuts out the "Monster" using the sonar panel fence. The two return to camp, where Juliet frees Sayid. She migrates with the survivors soon after, under the protection of Jack. However, en route to retrieving medication for Claire, she narrowly avoids an interrogation from Sayid and Sawyer, and manages to help Claire. Juliet also takes Sun to the Staff station upon learning of her pregnancy, and uses the equipment to perform a scan on her fetus; she confirms that she conceived on the island, and informs her that she has until her second trimester, in roughly two months. Soon after, Juliet confesses to Jack about her purpose for being in the camp.

Later, Kate informs Jack and Juliet of Naomi's arrival, prompting them to leave abruptly. They find Rousseau in the jungle and form a plan. When they return, they discover that Sawyer has played Juliet's dictophone to the camp, revealing the notes she made on Sun's pregnancy. She then reveals that the Others intend on invading the camp and abducting the pregnant women. Juliet and Jack lead the camp into the jungle to demonstrate their plan to defeat the Others. However, when Karl arrives to warn them of their immediate arrival, Juliet discloses information on the Looking Glass station, used for blocking outgoing signals, before heading off to the radio tower with the majority of the camp. After witnessing Sayid's plan backfire, Juliet gives Jack a kiss before parting and joins Sawyer in his rescue effort on the beach. After Hurley runs over one of the surviving Others with the van, Juliet corners Tom while Sawyer unexpectedly shoots him in cold blood.

Season 4

In the season premiere, Juliet along with Sayid, Sawyer, Bernard and Jin, question Desmond about the warning Charlie had given before he died. However Hurley interrupts and questions Desmond of Charlie's whereabouts and Desmond tells them all that Charlie had died leaving the castaways devastated. Juliet is later present when Jack confronts Locke for the killing of Naomi and when the survivors split into two groups. Some survivors such as Sawyer, Hurley and Claire go with Locke to the barracks because they believe that the people arriving at the Island will not rescue them. However, the majority including Juliet remain with Jack in hopes of getting rescued. Juliet, along with Sayid, disarm Daniel and Miles who had Jack and Kate at gunpoint. Later, Frank figures out Juliet was not on the plane and asks her where Ben is.

When Faraday and Charlotte disappear without note from the camp, Juliet and Jack run into the jungle in search for the newcomers. Juliet is confronted by Harper — her former therapist — and ordered to kill Faraday and Charlotte, accused by Ben of heading to The Tempest chemical station, to kill everyone on the island. Juliet and Jack find Kate on their road to The Tempest, but as Jack treats Kate who was tied up and knocked unconscious by Charlotte, Juliet vanishes and pursues the two freighter people on her own. She finds them executing their mission in the station, and takes Faraday at gun point, just until Charlotte attacks her. When it turns out they are securing the station to prevent Ben from killing everyone on the island, she leaves them alone. Upon reuniting outside — and discussing the threat posed by a possessive Ben — Juliet and Jack share a kiss.

Once it was revealed that Jack was suffering from appendicitis, Juliet operates on him. Following the operation, Juliet reveals to Kate that they kissed and that the kiss was only for Jack to prove to himself that he didn't have feelings for someone else. Once Kate leaves, Juliet tells Jack that she knows he is awake and that he has overheard the conversation.

Later, when Daniel is evacuating people to the Kahana by Zodiac, Juliet chooses to stay behind until everyone is safe. Later, Sawyer emerges from the ocean and encounters her on the beach, drinking a bottle of rum. He asks her what she is celebrating, and she replies that she is not celebrating, and motions to a billow of smoke over the ocean. Sawyer then asks "Is that our boat?", and Juliet replies "It was." Moments later, she disappears along with the rest of the island and its inhabitants when it's moved to its new location.

Season 5

Juliet remains with the Flight 815 survivors after the Island is moved, eventually staying with Sawyer and a few others after being separated from them during an attack by The Others. Juliet and Sawyer bond, which leads to Juliet deciding to stay with the other survivors once they join with the Dharma Initiative in the 70's. Over the next three years, she and Sawyer fall in love and develop a relationship, and are living together by the time Jack, Kate, and Hurley return.

Once their cover is blown, Juliet and Sawyer attempt to flee Dharma. They are captured, and set to be shipped back to the mainland, but escape when they learn of Jack's plan to destroy the Swan Station before it can be completed.

Through flashbacks, it is revealed that Juliet's parents divorced when she was a child, telling her and her sister that they still loved each other but were not meant to be together. Juliet later repeats this reason to Sawyer, believing he still has feelings for Kate. She decides instead to help Jack, hoping that if his plan works that she will never meet Sawyer and thus never lose him.

When the magnetic forces beneath the Swan become unstable in "The Incident", Juliet is struck by a loose chain and pulled into the hole that has been drilled. Sawyer and Kate attempt to save her, but Juliet lets go to avoid having Sawyer and Kate die with her. Before she does, she admits that she loves Sawyer more than anything. Juliet survives the fall, and - in the very last scene of season 5 - uses the last of her strength to strike the nuclear device Jack threw in earlier until it explodes.

Reception

Maureen Ryan of the Chicago Tribune declared Juliet the "Best female villain of the fall of 2006", saying that up until the third season she thought Benjamin Linus (Michael Emerson), was the "most chilling villain" on Lost, but that Juliet is even scarier.Entertainment Weekly describes "scheming Juliet" as a "captivating minor character". BuddyTV Senior Writer Jon Lachonis commented that Juliet's centric episode "One of Us" was "perhaps the most perfect episode of Lost ever produced, bar none." In this same review, he complimented Elizabeth Mitchell on her portrayal.

Elizabeth Mitchell submitted the episode "One of Us" for consideration on her behalf in the category of "Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series" at the 2007 Emmy Awards.

References

  1. DarkUFO Blogspot - Lost Mobisode, Episode 4
  2. DarkUFO Blogspot - Lost Mobisode, Episode 5
  3. Aubry D'Arminio, "TV on DVD," Entertainment Weekly 1026 (December 19, 2008): 58.


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