|Episode(s)||Deus Ex Machina, Orientation, Lockdown, The Man from Tallahassee, The Brig|
|Played By||Kevin Tighe|
Anthony Cooper is the biological father of John Locke. As an adult, Locke is conned by Cooper into donating a kidney to him. Cooper eventually ended up on the island, and is imprisoned by "the Others".
Cooper ran the conning circuit in his twenties and thirties, and conned a woman, Mary Ford, into giving him a large amount of money. In response, Mary's husband killed her and himself. Their son, James, retained a grudge against "Tom Sawyer" (one of Cooper's many aliases throughout the years). Cooper is an avid outdoorsman, enjoying hunting, fishing, and scuba diving, among other things.
He later conceived a child with a woman named Emily Locke; his son John was placed in several foster homes. Years later when John was an adult, Cooper’s kidney begins to fail; it was then that he met up with Emily again and convinced her to participate in a scam that would trick John into sympathizing for him and donating his kidney.
When Emily makes contact with Locke she informs him that he was immaculately conceived; doubting what he has heard, John hires a private detective to gather information about his parents. When presented with Anthony’s information, John visits Cooper’s house to visit his estranged father; it was there that Cooper set his scheme in motion. Cooper claims that he wasn’t even aware of John’s existence until a year after his birth, and that Emily had disappeared from his life for a year, and then suddenly returned informing him that John was placed up for adoption and that she needed money. Cooper created the illusion that he and John were good friends, and that he had bonded with him. When he misinforms John about the time to visit him, John discovers Cooper’s condition when he is being treated on a dialysis machine.
Anthony’s plan becomes a success when John offers to donate his kidney to him; when the procedure is complete, Cooper returns to his home under private care and John awakens to find him nowhere to be found. Cooper would cease all contact and communication with John from that time on. John would frequently park his car outside of Cooper’s house as a constant reminder of what he had done. Cooper found it quite humorous at first, however; after he moved to his new house, and John continued to arrive, Cooper began to be annoyed by this. On one of the many days Locke would arrive to Cooper’s house, he finally broke his silence and paid a visit to Locke outside of his house. When Cooper requested to know what exactly it was Locke wanted; he was met by Locke’s response of wanting to know why he betrayed him. Cooper responded that Locke wasn’t the first person he’d ever conned; Locke needed a father figure, and Cooper needed a kidney, and that’s what happened. When Cooper exited the vehicle, he coldly told Locke not to return, informing him that he was not wanted.
Cooper fakes his own death to escape being killed by Jimmy Bane and his associate. John Locke and Helen are the only two people to attend his staged funeral. Locke finds Cooper still alive and Cooper asks him to retrieve $700,000 he has conned in a retirement fund scheme. When Locke retrieves the money, he brings it to the Flightline Motel, where Cooper presents him with his share of the money, to which Locke states that he didn't do it for the money. Helen arrives at the motel and slaps Cooper for doing everything that he did to Locke, and then suddenly storms out at the sight of Locke and Cooper together. Cooper proceeds to the cab that is waiting for him, but before he leaves, he watches his son propose to Helen, and get rejected. Cooper then leaves the motel.
After Locke was confronted by a man named Peter Talbot who informed him that Anthony, who claimed himself to be "Adam Seward", had become involved with his mother, he requested Locke's help in the matter. When Locke confronted Anthony about ending things with her, Anthony obliged and stated that he would call off their upcoming wedding. However, when Peter ended up dead, Locke confronted Anthony accusing him of being the one who murdered him. When Anthony said that she had called off the wedding because she couldn't deal with it, Locke grabbed the phone to call her to confirm, but as he was doing so, Anthony pushed Locke out of his eight story window, paralyzing him from the waist down.
It is unknown how or when Anthony Cooper made it to the island, however, he was captured and imprisoned by "the Others", and kept strapped to a chair inside a locked room. When Ben and Richard arrived in the room where Locke was being held, Ben explained how by blowing up the submarine, he actually made his dream come true, he brought Locke to the mysterious room, and let him look inside to see Anthony strapped into the chair.
In "The Brig", Ben tries to force Locke to kill his father by issuing him an ultimatum - unless Locke can kill his father, he is not ready to understand the secrets of the island. Locke is unable to, though is then secretly passed a file of information on Sawyer by Richard Alpert, from which Locke realizes that Cooper is the man who conned Sawyer's mother, which led to the murder-suicide that left Sawyer an orphan. Knowing that he can use Sawyer to kill Cooper instead, he imprisons the old man in the brig of the Black Rock, and brings Sawyer to him, locking the two of them in together. As the two men talk, Cooper explains how he reached the island, believing they are all dead and this is some sort of after-life. He mentions cons and Sawyer slowly realizes the connection - and the identity of the man in there with him. The truth is exposed, and Sawyer forces Cooper to read the note to the original Sawyer that he has carried on him since a child, which Cooper derides and tells him he has no remorse for the incident, before ripping the letter to pieces. In rage, Sawyer murders Cooper by strangling him with a metal chain. Locke then takes his body to Ben to prove he has killed his father, and that his issues before the island are now over.
In the alternate timeline created by the nuclear explosion at The Swan Station, Anthony Cooper remains a con-man, and his actions still led to the death of James Ford's parents, albeit a year later than in the original timeline. Ford, a policeman in the alternate timeline, is still pursuing Cooper and maintains plans to kill him as he told Miles in the episode "Recon".
In the episode "The Candidate", Locke tells Jack Shephard that Cooper was a "great father" and during their relationship, John received his flying license. He wanted Cooper to be his first passenger and during this first flight, they crashed. This crash led to John Locke being paralyzed from the waist down in the alternate timeline (as opposed to being pushed out of a window by Cooper), and it also led to Cooper being in a vegatative state.
A photograph of Cooper and Locke together can be seen on the wall of Locke's cubicle in the episode "The Substitute". It is unknown if Locke and Cooper really shared a good relationship, or if the crash that destroyed their lives happened during a "long con" to get Locke's kidney.