In Saw (2004) Dr Gordon and Adam were locked up in a room together. Dr Gordon, as we find out, is supposed to kill Adam in order to prevent his family from getting killed.

Adam, however, is never really given a chance to escape. At the end, Jigsaw says to Adam, "The key to that chain is in that tub". If we recall what Jigsaw really does, he gives people the chance to live by ironically escaping their situation, so why doesn't Adam have a chance to escape?

If we consider that Jigsaw is not a "murderer", as mentioned in the movie, then why does he allow two "innocent" people to die? We have Adam and Amanda's "dead cell mate" which were very much both alive. why did they die unnecessarily without a chance to live?

Dr Gordon was told more than once to kill Adam and even given a hint with the cigarette and the blood, but Adam was never given a chance to live, so what was his crime? We hear that Jigsaw calls Adam a voyeur, but is that not exactly what Jigsaw is himself, a voyeur?

I suppose the question is, why the ambiguous exceptions to the MO of jigsaw with Adam and Amanda's "dead cell mate"?

  • Doesn's the title question spoil that Adam dies?
    – Oliver_C
    Oct 30, 2016 at 12:36
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    @Oliver_C "Adam" is pretty vague. "spoilers are allowed here and may be out in the open. Read at your own risk." per movies.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic
    – MmmHmm
    Apr 2, 2017 at 16:23

7 Answers 7


I agree that Adam has two chance and he wasted both. The first one was the hacksaw. First he broke his own in hurry. If he has valued his life even he could have taken the step that Dr Gordon has taken.

Let's see the second chance given to Adam again. Just in the end - Saw get up in the room and take out the makeup from his head. He told Adam the key is in tub and Adam remembers he lost the key when he woke up. The keys might be in tube. But instead searching for the keys he pick the empty gun and shoot it on Saw. I think that is where he waste his second chance.

  • +1 for the fact that Adam did get a hacksaw and he could have sawed his own leg off, but unfortunately I think that Adam was simply there to assist the Dr and it's just a plot hole. Jan 3, 2016 at 2:21
  • I see the Saw 3 after giving the answer and I understand your question that time. Please mark it as answer if you are agree. Jan 3, 2016 at 9:41
  • @DustinDavis: The existence of two saws directly contradicts the notion that Adam was not given any chance. You are correct, however, that Adam was not explicitly told what he needed to do in order to escape; so I do agree that the game centered on Gordon. But Adam was not doomed.
    – Flater
    Oct 1, 2018 at 8:17

I know this is bringing up an old topic, but I think people tend to miss one key detail... When Zepp comes into the room, before sliding the door open, there is a distinct unlocking sound.

Even if Adam immediatly got the key and unlocked his chain, he still would have been stuck in the room until Dr. Gordon's game was over (6 PM or until dead). So, either way, Adam living was dependent on Dr. Gordon failing.

Did he have a chance to live? Yes... but it was out of his hands. I also feel like Jigsaw would have helped him if Adam didn't try to shoot him in the end.... They made a point to show Jigsaw waiting for Adam to check the bathtub (presumably, so he could show Adam out and give his "redemption" speech)

  • +1 for this, but...if he has a chance to live, but it's not in his power to control it, then does he really have a chance like the other contestants? Sep 29, 2018 at 23:10
  • Is this a distinct lock unlocking sound? Or could it be the sound of a latch unhooking? (given the industrial sliding door, metal latches are quite common). Those latches could also be opened from either side; unless there is specific proof that the inside had no handle? Do you have a picture by any chance?
    – Flater
    Oct 1, 2018 at 8:15
  • Also, if it is an actual lock that needed to be unlocked from the outside, and you use that to conclude that Adam was not given a chance to escape, then you must invariably conclude that Gordon wasn't given a change to escape either - which renders the entire game in violation of Jigsaw's rules.
    – Flater
    Oct 1, 2018 at 8:19
  • @Flater - youtu.be/5iVEjcAUtXg - watch from 3:10 on. No handle on inside. Perhaps it was a latch being lifted and not a physical key - but, either way, they were locked in the bathroom. For your second point, I never said that. Adam's chance was Gordon failing at his. One can reasonably conclude that Zepp was instructed to unlock the door after 6 (otherwise, Jigsaw couldn't get out either)
    – Scott
    Oct 6, 2018 at 16:57

Yes, I'll keep this simple. Amanda was supposed to put the key around Adam's neck, but Amanda just put it on Adam's chest. Jigsaw told her to but she didn't. So that's another way he could have lived.

  • 1
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    – John
    Oct 30, 2016 at 0:56

All these theories make sense, and I've got another one. It could be worthless but here goes nothing: I reckon Adam never had a chance to survive.

Like if you remember, the whole point of Lawrence and Adam being there was that, if Adam dies, Lawrence'a family will survive. But if Gordon didn't kill Adam, Zepp would kill Alison and Diana.

But Adam killed Zepp. So if you think about it, that part of the deal was never met, meaning that Adam had to die because Lawrence didn't kill him and the whole Gordon family survived.


  • Thank you for assisting the community. It may not apply here, but ideas for framing an answer may include describing your sources along with a synopsis of what they said, and/or adding links to the resources and visuals you’ve found. I hope you enjoy participating.
    – John
    Nov 1, 2016 at 19:42

Did Adam have a chance to live?


To be precise he had two chances :

  1. Keys: He left the keys in bathtub. So while trying to free himself, he can even have the chance to get the keys, which he missed.

  2. Hacksaw: There were two hacksaws; one for each. Fair chance.

Adam and Amanda's "dead cell mate" (Donnie Greco) were both have chances to get out alive but it wasn't fully in their hands. Amanda's cell mate can always be saved if Amanda fails in cutting him. Similarly Adam's fate were in hands of Lawrence and Zep. If both fails or he cut his feet before Lawrence and Zep can kill him, he can be freed.

And for the innocent part Doctor Lynn obviously is more innocent than Adam. And Donnie Greco is supposed to be Amanda's Drug dealer from original script. He doesn't give his weird task to criminal only but to those who lost their path in living their life in a right way.

Related Read: Why did Jigsaw kidnap Lynn Denlon for his operation in Saw 3?

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    But he didn't know the keys were in the bathtub, no?
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Oct 5, 2015 at 12:52
  • @NapoleonWilson That's why I don't think he had a chance to live. As far as the hacksaw, yeah, he could have done that but there was no mention that if he escaped the chain, Zep would let him go. We only know that if Dr Gordon did not kill Adam before 6 that they would both die and so would Dr Gordon's family. Oct 5, 2015 at 15:54
  • @DustinDavis as i said in answer Adam and Donnie Greco's chance were more dependent on others.
    – Ankit Sharma
    Oct 5, 2015 at 15:56
  • The problem I have is that there was no way for Donnie to get out. You're saying only if Amanda decided to not get the key or if she didn't get to it in time. That gives Donnie 0 chance to save himself because he couldn't even talk since he was sedated. My original question to this is why? Jigsaw doesn't work that way as proven in a sequel when he tells Amanda that she is just killing people and not giving them a chance to live. Oct 5, 2015 at 18:37
  • @DustinDavis What chances did even jigsaw provides? Are not they based on compromise of other's life always? Amanda just straight killed the victims , even the surviving ones. But Jigsaw gives opportunity to his victim.
    – Ankit Sharma
    Oct 5, 2015 at 18:43

I believe Adam wasn't left for dead since the police were already on their way and they would want to see all the crime scenes. It doesn't matter if Dr. Gordon didn't tell the location, they could find out via phone ping or blood tracks. I mean, the neighbors were involved already and Lawrence was very wounded, he couldn't cover up the location of the torture room. Adam probably made it out alive with help from the police, unless the police themselves didn't want to help which I doubt since there is DNA evidence of the Jigsaw killer to be found in that room! When Jigsaw said "game over", I believe he meant that this particular game was over and it is true, since Zap died. My opinion: Adam survived. Until I saw the sequel.

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    – Community Bot
    May 4, 2022 at 23:25

Adam could have survived by shooting the chain off his foot with the gun jigsaw had and ask Gordon for the bullet and Gordon could have sawed his foot off - they both could have lived.

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