Season: 1–6, Episodes: 108, Faction: Survivors
Katherine Anne Austen, more commonly known as Kate, was one of the survivors from the crash of Oceanic Flight 815. Before the crash, Kate spent years fleeing the law after killing her abusive father. To achieve her goals, she would commit several other crimes and would turn to bank robbery, assault and seduction.
On the Island, she became an integral member of the survivors’ society, forming strong bonds with Jack and Sawyer and also becoming close with Claire and Sun. Resourceful, quick-witted and mysteriously reclusive, she participated in many missions while attempting to hide her troubled past from the rest of the survivors.
Kate was captured by the Others along with Jack and Sawyer, but she eventually escaped the Island with five other survivors. Kate went on trial for her various crimes and accepted a ten-year probation order. She was briefly engaged to Jack, but his drug and alcohol problems ended their relationship. She also raised Aaron Littleton as her son, but she finally decided to return to the island to rescue his mother, Claire.
Once she returned to the Island, Kate was stranded in 1977 with the other survivors. She worked for the DHARMA Initiative and saved a young Benjamin Linus’s life. She then time-traveled to 2007, where she found an “infected” Claire. Kate joined the Man in Black’s side, but she did not trust him. She helped Jack to kill the Man in Black and then escaped the island with Claire. Jack and Kate were reunited in the afterlife and moved on with their friends.
4×01 – The Beginning of the End
Kate, like the rest of the survivors, was elated by the prospect of finally being rescued. But Naomi disappeared, and she and Jack disagreed over which trail to follow. She and Jack split up to both find Naomi and herd the survivors, but when Kate hugged him and told him to be careful, she also stole Jack’s phone. A man called Minkowski on the phone while Kate tracked Naomi, who attacked Kate till she convinced her that Locke had acted alone in the stabbing. Naomi then died, and Kate met the other survivors at the cockpit.
Sawyer followed Locke’s group to the Barracks, disappointing Kate. She and Jack reminisced then followed a helicopter’s sound to an apparent rescuer, Daniel Faraday. (“The Beginning of the End”)
4×02 – Confirmed Dead
They agreed to find the other members of his team, first Miles, who feared they’d killed Naomi. Kate explained what happened and took him to her body to convince him. Sayid and Juliet then arrived and disarmed Miles. They discovered a beacon from the third member, Charlotte, revealing Locke had her, then found Frank, the helicopter’s pilot. Kate and Daniel carried Naomi’s body to the helicopter. (“Confirmed Dead”)
4×03 – The Economist
Kate joined Sayid and Miles to the Barracks to retrieve Charlotte, after Jack told her that Sawyer would protect her from Locke. Hurley there posed as a prisoner and said the others had left. They split up to search Ben’s house, and when Sawyer approached her, she warned Sayid. Sawyer and Kate talked about “playing house,” and she stayed in the Barracks when Sayid left. (“The Economist”)
4×04 – Eggtown
Fearing the rescuers knew the police sought her, Kate asked to speak to Miles, and when Locke refused, she tricked Hurley into revealing his location. Miles asked her to bring him to Ben, and Kate turned to Sawyer, who distracted Locke till she could bring him there. Miles revealed the freighter knew of Kate’s record, and Locke ordered Kate to leave the Barracks by morning.
Sawyer let her stay with him, but when he expressed extreme relief at learning she wasn’t pregnant, Kate rejected his advances and decided to leave for the beach. Sawyer noted that she’d likely return the next time Jack rejected her, and she slapped him. (“Eggtown”)
4×06 – The Other Woman
On the walk back, Kate encountered Daniel and Charlotte, who knocked her unconscious. Jack and Juliet found her, and they went to the Tempest. Once they returned to the beach, Kate stayed suspicious and shared her doubts with Sun. (“The Other Woman”)
4×07 – Ji Yeon
Kate later drew Sun a map to the Barracks when she and Jin decided to defect. (“Ji Yeon”)
4×09 – The Shape of Things to Come
A few mornings later, she expressed concern when she found Jack taking painkillers. (“The Shape of Things to Come”)
4×10 – Something Nice Back Home
Jack’s “stomach bug” turned out to be appendicitis. Kate carried him to the tent where the operation would take place, and Jack remarked that it wouldn’t be the first time she was his nurse. He asked Kate to hold a mirror so he could watch his surgery. His pain upset her though, and Juliet ordered her out. Juliet later told her that Jack loved her and kissed Juliet to vainly prove he didn’t. (“Something Nice Back Home”)
4×11 – Cabin Fever
A helicopter dropped a satellite phone to the beach, landing on Claire’s tent. (“Cabin Fever”)
Jack and Kate followed the satellite phone, running into Sawyer, Miles and Aaron. Kate returned to the beach, learned of the mercenaries’ plan and went back for Jack.
The Others captured her and recruited her to help them ambush the mercenaries. (“There’s No Place Like Home, Part 1”)
She approached Keamy’s men and pretended the Others were chasing her, letting them attack the mercenaries by surprise. She then freed Ben, who let her board Frank’s helicopter with Sayid, Sawyer, Jack and Hurley.
Sawyer jumped out of the helicopter to save fuel, but he first kissed Kate and whispered a secret request. (“There’s No Place Like Home, Parts 2”)
They landed on the freighter and Kate took Aaron from Sun, who had already arrived. Jack pulled her back into the helicopter before they could fetch Jin, telling her that he would not leave without her. The freighter exploded. The chopper ran out of fuel and ditched in the ocean, but they were able to use a life raft before they were picked up by Penny’s boat. They set out for the island of Membata and eventual rescue. (“There’s No Place Like Home, Parts 3”)
After the Island
The coast guard took the Oceanic Six to Hawaii, where no family or friends came to meet Kate. At a press conference, she claimed she’d given birth to Aaron on the island, and though reporters showed disbelief, she started raising him as her own.
She kept in touch with the other survivors, attending Jack’s father’s funeral, which Aaron’s unknowing grandmother also attended, and Hurley’s surprise birthday party. (“There’s No Place Like Home, Part 1”)
5×11 – Whatever Happened, Happened
She also fulfilled Sawyer’s request in giving financial support to his daughter, whose mother, Cassidy, Kate had met years before. Kate confided in Cassidy, and the two met regularly over the next three years. (“Whatever Happened, Happened”)
4×04 – Eggtown
Kate went on trial for her numerous crimes. The prosecution called her cancer-stricken mother as their “star witness,” but Kate’s supposed death had softened her, and she agreed not to testify if Kate let her see her “grandson.” Kate refused, but her mother skipped testifying regardless, and Kate took the prosecution’s new deal of ten years probation and confinement to California. (“Eggtown”)
4×10 – Something Nice Back Home
She later became romantically involved with Jack, who’d testified for her, once he agreed to see his nephew, Aaron. He moved in with her, and she accepted his marriage proposal. But visions of his dead father and Kate’s visits to Cassidy, which brought up Jack’s issues involving infidelity and Sawyer, led to her finding Jack drunk and alone with Aaron one night. They argued, and Jack walked out. (“Something Nice Back Home”)
Locke visited Kate sometime after this, asking she return to the island. She refused, even when Locke told her that everyone on the island would die. She asked him if he had ever been in love. (“The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham”)
She later dreamt one night that Claire warned her against bringing Aaron to the island. (“There’s No Place Like Home, Part 3”)
About a month later, Jack insisted they return the island. She met him at the airport and she was surprised by his disheveled appearance. They shared an intimate moment, but when he said returning to the island would protect Aaron, she slapped him and left. (“Through the Looking Glass, Part 2”)