James Ford (Josh Holloway) from "Lost" is a con artist stranded on a mysterious island after a plane crash. Commonly known by the alias "Sawyer", a name he adopted after the con man responsible for his parents' deaths, he is initially hostile to his fellow crash survivors and unwilling to count himself among the community. However, his ability to read people and his early acquisition of a gun make him a valuable asset to the group, and over time he becomes more integrated, eventually assuming the leadership role after a smaller group of survivors are thrown decades into the past. While stranded on the island, Sawyer forms romantic bonds with fugitive Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly) and later doctor Juliet Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell). His antagonistic relationship with the group's leader, Doctor Jack Shephard (Matthew Fox), provides much friction in the early days after the crash, although the two eventually grow to respect and appreciate one another.
Prior to the plane crash, Sawyer maintained a living of conning women out of large amounts of money, while at the same time continuing his search for the original Sawyer, whose con job resulted in a murder/suicide that orphaned young James. He traveled to Australia to follow a false lead, which resulted in accidentally killing the wrong man; afterwards, a shaken Sawyer boarded Oceanic 815 to return to Los Angeles. However, the plane went off course and crashed on a mysterious island, where the survivors were left stranded.
Sawyer initially set himself apart from the other crash survivors while simultaneously making them dependant on him: his hoarding of personal belongings scavenged from the plane resulted in other survivors needing to barter with him for necessities. He feuded with Jack and with Sayid Jarrah (Naveen Andrews), an Iraqi ex-soldier, and antagonized the rest of the group with insults and derogatory nicknames.
Eventually, Sawyer began to integrate into the group out of necessity. He struck up friendships with Michael Dawson (Harold Perrineau Jr) and Jin-Soo Kwon (Daniel Dae Kim) as the trio built a raft together to seek rescue. When hostile natives destroyed the raft and the group returned to the survivors' camp, Sawyer took up his antagonistic role again, provoking hatred and anger from the others.
Jack, Kate, and Sawyer spent much of their time on the Island orbiting around each other, as both men had strong feelings for Kate and she for each of them. Eventually, Juliet joined the complicated relationship, originally competing with Kate for Jack's heart but eventually falling for Sawyer.
Sawyer's leadership potential was finally fulfilled when he, Juliet, Jin, and two members of a group that had come to the island to destroy it, became trapped in 1977 and integrated themselves into a research community studying the bizarre effects of the island. Sawyer took over as leader of the quintet and eventually rose to leadership in the research community as well. When Sawyer's group were finally reunited with other members of their original group -- namely Kate, Jack, Sayid, and Hugo "Hurley" Reyes (Jorge Garcia) -- Sawyer was reluctant to give up the role of leader to Jack and persisted in trying to keep control of the situation.
After Juliet died while attempting to return the remaining survivors to the present, Sawyer divided much of his time between seeking revenge against Jack, who he blamed for the event, and punishing himself for letting it happen. While this was happening, a war was forming on the island between two forces using various groups for their own ends; Sawyer declared his allegiance to neither group and continued to pursue escape. Eventually, Sawyer faced his own guilt over Juliet's death and joined the other survivors in saving the island and leaving for good.
Sawyer remains one of the most popular characters of "Lost", with The Lost Blog readers electing him the undisputed favorite. His combined charm, good looks, and brash attitude have earned him a devoted fan base. The popular appeal is not unearned; throughout six seasons, Sawyer is one of the most active and plot-important characters. His quest to put his traumatic past to rest and his slow evolution from antisocial survivor to respected leader are one of the show's best-handled storylines.
"I saw a guy lying there with an ankle holster, so I took the gun. Thought it might come in handy. Guess what. I just shot a bear!"
"New sheriff in town, boys. Y'all best get used to it."