James Ford, better known by the alias "Sawyer", and later as "Jim LaFleur" is a fictional character on the ABC television series Lost played by Josh Holloway.
Sawyer was born on 18 February 1968, he was initially portrayed as a conniving, overly sarcastic handsome flirt who keeps stashes of washed ashore items. His flashbacks typically depict a more sensitive side to him, juxtaposed against acts of betrayal and theft. He has a romantic interest in Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly), which is particularly prominent in the beginning of the third season. In the fourth season he develops a more heroic side, becoming protective of Claire Littleton (Emilie de Ravin) and sacrificing his chance to escape so his friends can in the season finale. In the fifth season, Sawyer quickly acclimates to his brand new role as group leader and is shown to fall in love with Juliet Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell). Sawyer is the show's primary anti-hero. TV Guide selected him as the 16th greatest television character ever, as well as the 21st greatest hero.
Sawyer was born in Jasper, Alabama in 1968 as James Ford. When James was eight years old, his parents were conned by a man under the alias of "Tom Sawyer"; as a result, his father killed both his mother and himself. On the day of the funeral, Jacob expresses his condolences to Sawyer, even as he is writing his 'I am going to find you' letter for the conman who took his family. At the time of his parents' death, James and his family were living in Knoxville, Tennessee according to the letter Sawyer carries. James claims to have dropped out of high school, but has a "high school transcript." James vows to avenge his parents' deaths by searching for the original Sawyer, but finds himself in financial difficulty; he adopts the profession and alias of the man responsible for his parents' death, then uses his looks and charm to seduce women and divide families, thus, "becoming the man he was hunting." His favourite con would be to wake up next to his victim and pretend to be late for an important meeting; as he rushes to get ready, his briefcase will spill open, revealing large bundles of cash the woman "wasn't supposed to see." He then uses her interest as a means of getting her or her rich spouse to invest in a large, but fake, business deal. On one occasion, he carries out this con up until he sees the targeted couple has a child, and bails on the deal in order to spare the child the same torment he went through.
On another occasion, Sawyer carries out a "Long con" (large-scale con) on a divorced woman named Cassidy who is known to be less gullible than his usual victims. He sets up the usual con and spills his cash over the ground, only this time with fake bank notes. Cassidy realizes he's trying to con her from the moment he spills the money, and tells him his con wouldn't have worked because she received no money after the divorce. Instead of being mad, however, she asks him to teach her his profession. After learning a few basic tricks, Cassidy soon asks Sawyer to pull off a long con. He tells her such a con requires money, and she reveals she actually received $600,000 from her ex-husband. He pretends to begin a long con, using her money to set it up, but in fact he simply plans to take the money. However, she has begun to grow on him, and he wavers on his con. While visiting the diner of Kate's mother, his partner (played by Kevin Dunn) forces Sawyer to resume his con on threat of death. He goes back to Cassidy and tells her that he has been conning her, and warns her of a car parked outside. He stuffs the money into a bag and tells her to leave with it, and he will take the blame. When she runs off, he takes the real money (having given her fake bank notes) and returns to the car, actually empty.
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