James Cole
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Quotes for
James Cole (Character)
from Twelve Monkeys (1995)

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Twelve Monkeys (1995)
[James Cole found a spider and knows he's got to take it with him, let's it crawl over his hand while deciding what to do with it]
Jeffrey Goines: You know what crazy is? Crazy is majority rules. Take germs, for example.
James Cole: Germs?
Jeffrey Goines: Uh-huh. In the eighteenth century, no such thing, nada, nothing. No one ever imagined such a thing. No sane person, anyway. Ah! Ah! Along comes this doctor, uh, uh, uh, Semmelweis, Semmelweis. Semmelweis comes along. He's trying to convince people, well, other doctors mainly, that's there's these teeny tiny invisible bad things called germs that get into your body and make you sick. Ah? He's trying to get doctors to wash their hands. What is this guy? Crazy? Teeny, tiny, invisible? What do you call it? Uh-uh, germs? Huh? What? Now, cut to the 20th century. Last week, as a matter of fact, before I got dragged into this hellhole. I go in to order a burger in this fast food joint, and the guy drops it on the floor. Jim, he picks it up, he wipes it off, he hands it to me like it's all OK. "What about the germs?" I say. He says, "I don't believe in germs. Germs is just a plot they made up so they can sell you disinfectants and soaps." Now he's crazy, right? See?
[James Cole finally takes the spider into his mouth, Jeffrey Goines is either too deep into his talk or unimpressed by this and continues his talk as if nothing happened]
Jeffrey Goines: Ah! Ah! There's no right, there's no wrong, there's only popular opinion. You... you... you believe in germs, right?

James Cole: Look at them. They're just asking for it. Maybe the human race deserves to be wiped out.
Jeffrey Goines: Wiping out the human race? That's a great idea. That's great. But more of a long-term thing. I mean, first we have to focus on more immediate goals.

James Cole: Oh, wouldn't it be great if I *was* crazy? Then the world would be okay.

James Cole: I'm here about some monkeys.
Jeffrey Goines: Monkeys?
James Cole: Monkeys. Yes. Twelve of them.

James Cole: I'm looking for the Army of the Twelve Monkeys.

James Cole: All I see are dead people.

James Cole: This is a place for crazy people. I'm not crazy.
Dr. Owen Fletcher: We don't use the term "crazy," Mr. Cole.
James Cole: Well, you've got some real nuts here.

Dr. Kathryn Railly: If you don't turn yourself over to the police, they're going to, to kill you, then they're going to shoot me too because I'm going to be the accessory to murder.
James Cole: You're all gonna die.
Dr. Kathryn Railly: Nobody is going to die! You're not going to save the world, okay? You're delusional. You've made all this up out of bits and pieces in your head.
James Cole: No.
Dr. Kathryn Railly: Yes! Let me give you an example. You know Jeffrey Goines. You were both patients at County Hospital at the same time.
James Cole: Jeffrey Goines was a fruitcake!

James Cole: She's not honey babe, she's a doctor. My psychiatrist. Understand?
Charlie the Hotel Clerk: Whatever gets it up for you, Jack.

James Cole: I am insane. And you are my insanity.

Dr. Kathryn Railly: Wh-wh-where are we going?
James Cole: Philadelphia.
Dr. Kathryn Railly: That's more than a hundred miles! We can't...
James Cole: That's why I can't walk there.

Louie: Where'd they send you?
James Cole: 1990.
Louie: '90! How was it? Good drugs? Lots of pussy? Hey, Bob, you do the job? You find out the big info? Army of the 12 Monkeys?
James Cole: I was supposed to be 1996.
Louie: Science ain't an exact science with these clowns but, they're getting better. You're lucky you didn't end up in ancient Egypt!

[first lines]
James Cole: Jose - psst! Jose, what's going on?
Jose: Bad news, man
James Cole: Volunteers?
Jose: Yeah. And they said your name.
Jose: Hey, maybe they'll give you a pardon, man.
James Cole: [sarcastic] Yeah, that's why none of the volunteers come back. They all get a pardon.

Dr. Kathryn Railly: What is the matter with your leg?
James Cole: Got shot.
Dr. Kathryn Railly: Shot! Who shot you?
James Cole: I don't know. It was some kind of war. Never mind. You wouldn't believe me anyway.

James Cole: [handful of bloody teeth] This is how they find us, by our teeth.

James Cole: I want the future to be unknown. I want to become a whole person.

Geologist: [after James Cole informs the scientists that he was sent to the wrong year] What did you do with you time Cole? Did you waste it on drugs? Women?
James Cole: They forced me to take drugs!
Microbiologist: Forced you? Why would someone force you to take drugs?

James Cole: [In 1990, James is being interviewed by a panel of mental health doctors and trying to explain the situation] 1996 is the past too, listen to me!
[the panel of doctors look at James with skeptical expressions]
James Cole: What I...
[James realizing this isn't going very well]
James Cole: ... what I need to do is make a telephone call. I can straighten this all out if I can make a telephone call.
Dr. Owen Fletcher: [Very skeptical] Who would you call? Who would straighten everything out?
James Cole: The scientists. They'll want to know they sent me to the wrong time.
[Dr Fletcher just nods]
James Cole: I can leave a voice mail message that they monitor from the present.
[Panel has mixed facial expressions]
James Cole: Can I just make one telephone call please?

"12 Monkeys: Pilot (#1.1)" (2015)
Dr. Cassandra Railly: What's your name? You know mine already.
James Cole: Cole.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: All right... Cole, let's talk about this.
James Cole: Nothing to talk about. You don't know who Leland Frost is. That means they sent me back too early.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: What do you mean "too early"?
James Cole: Too far back in the past.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: This is the present.
James Cole: No, this is the past. 2043 is the present.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: You think you're from the future. Okay, why did they send you back in time, Cole?
James Cole: About four years from now, most of the human race is gonna be wiped out by a plague, a virus, that it's because of a man named Leland Frost. I have to find him.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: You saw my lecture. Okay, listen to me, Cole. I know you really believe these things, but they're not real.
James Cole: [shows her a watch] I'm not crazy. I'm not crazy.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: That's just like mine.
James Cole: It's not just like yours. This is your watch... from my time, your future. This is your watch.

James Cole: You came.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: I had to see if you were real.
James Cole: Here I am.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Here you are. You know, you're late.
James Cole: It's not an exact science.

Katrina Jones: Mr. Cole, you are welcome to spend the rest of your life right here on the floor of this cell. That's one option.
James Cole: What's the other one?
Katrina Jones: Depends. Do you believe in fate?
James Cole: Sure... Fate, karma, Santa Claus. I'm very spiritual.
Katrina Jones: Spirituality is just science we don't understand yet. Call it what you will, but something led you and me to this moment.
James Cole: For what?
Katrina Jones: A mission... one for which I believe you were destined.
James Cole: Who are you?
Katrina Jones: Jones is my name. You're going to help me change the world, Mr. Cole.

James Cole: How long was I out?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Almost three days.
James Cole: What?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Whoa, no, whoa, hold on. You're not exactly 100% yet.
James Cole: Ugh.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Although you do heal fast, like, unusually fast. You're lucky. The bullet passed clean through. You know, the one you took before you... disappeared.
James Cole: Splintered.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Is that what you call it?
James Cole: That's what they call it. You believe me now. You don't think I'm crazy?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: No crazier than I am. I mean, I just sewed up a bullet wound I saw you get two years ago. I don't know what I believe, but... you're here.
James Cole: Okay. All right, we got to move.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: W-whoa, hold on. Cole, you've just been shot. Your body has been traumatized. You need time to recover.
James Cole: No, no, no. I don't have time.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: But I just need a second here.
James Cole: We got to go. No, no, no, we don't have a second! We have to...
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Stop! You have no idea what the last two years have been for me. It's been three days for you, but it's been years for me.
James Cole: Listen, Dr. Railly...
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Yeah, it's not really doctor anymore. It's kind of hard to keep your practice when everyone thinks you're a lunatic. Now, you asked me to be here, and I am... but I have a lot of goddamn questions.
James Cole: You're right. It's been a long time for you. You deserve some answers.

James Cole: Mmm. Oh, that's good. If I lived in this time, this is all I'd eat. Cheeseburgers, every meal.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: Hey, we need to come up with a game plan for when we find Leland Goines.
James Cole: We find him, I kill him. That's it.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: No! No, you can't just walk in there and murder someone.
James Cole: 1 for 7 billion? That math works for me.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: That might not solve the problem. Whatever this guy's done to create this plague might already be under way. No, let's say you stop him, how will you know if the future is changed?
James Cole: Oh, we'll know. I'll be erased.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: You mean you'll... You're gonna die?
James Cole: No, it's... It's not death. It's something else. It's... this me will never have been from that moment forward. It's complicated. It's okay - I knew this was a one-way trip coming in.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: And then what about the future?
James Cole: It'll be rewritten into something better. Plague will never have happened. My time will be gone. Trust me, there's nothing there worth saving.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: You look good.
James Cole: Thanks. You, uh... You look like the women we used to see in old magazines.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Which magazines?
James Cole: I mean, uh... you look... clean.

Aaron Marker: So how do you know each other?
James Cole: She bought me a cheeseburger.

James Cole: I had him. Why'd you stop me?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: I told you, you can't just kill someone.
James Cole: He's already dead! Don't you understand that? Everybody is already dead. You are already dead because of him! 7 billion people dead. I had a chance to stop him.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: What just happened?
James Cole: Something comes back in time, comes in contact with itself, Mother Nature doesn't like it when you rearrange her furniture.

Leland Goines: You can't kill me, Cole... 'cause that would you'd... you'd have no reason to come for me in the first place.
[Cole guns him down]
Dr. Cassandra Railly: He's dead. But you're still here.
James Cole: No. No, no. That doesn't make any sense. That doesn't make any sense. He...
[shouts at Goines]
James Cole: How is that possible?
[in a calmer tone]
James Cole: How is that possible?

Katrina Jones: Mr. Cole, did you find him?
James Cole: Yeah, I found him.
Katrina Jones: Then you failed your mission. You were to eliminate him before he could release the plague.
James Cole: Leland's dead. I killed him, just like you wanted me to. You were wrong, Killing him didn't change anything. There were others. There were always others?
Katrina Jones: "Others?" Others, who? Mr. Cole, who?
James Cole: The Army of the 12 Monkeys.

Katrina Jones: Do you believe in fate?
James Cole: Sure. Fate, karma, Santa Claus. I'm very spiritual.
Katrina Jones: Spirituality is just science we don't understand... yet.

James Cole: Hold on to this. We are going to need it again, about one minute ago.

"12 Monkeys: The Red Forest (#1.6)" (2015)
Alternate Katrina Jones: Your Dr. Railly was murdered - shot in 2015.
James Cole: They must've killed her after I splintered.
Alternate Katrina Jones: Looks like her death was the point of divergence. Somehow, her absence must have caused the plague to be released a year earlier in Chechnya. She must have been very important.
James Cole: She was. She is.

James Cole: You buried me?
Alternate José Ramse: I watched you die. We stumbled upon this place together. Soldiers beat the hell out of us.
James Cole: Yeah, that happened.
Alternate José Ramse: You took a hit. You never woke up.
James Cole: That didn't happen.

James Cole: I need to use the machine.
Alternate José Ramse: If I fire this thing up, it's gonna drain us. We're not gonna have any power left.
James Cole: I can undo all this - put things back the way they're supposed to be.
Alternate José Ramse: These people, they depend on me. I gotta look out for their future.
James Cole: There is no future. "Whatever the world is now, it doesn't have to be this." Remember? I can change it.
Whitley: You're not actually considering this. If you turn this thing on, we'll bleed the core out. We'll be done. We can't survive.
Alternate José Ramse: Maybe we're not supposed to.

James Cole: Something's different with the plague, I don't know what - Chechnya, Operation Troy...
Aaron Marker: What?
James Cole: ...Cassie plays a role somehow.
Aaron Marker: Operation Troy? How do you know about that? That's classified.
James Cole: Where I come from, it's history.

James Cole: You still don't believe me, do you?
Aaron Marker: I believe that this cult is real, but, no, I don't think you're Marty McFly.
James Cole: Who?

Aaron Marker: I spent my entire career putting bullshit sound bites into other people's heads. Cassie's the only person who ever filled me with anything. I can't lose her again.
James Cole: I got a buddy, back in 2043. Always says this thing: Everybody's got two wolves inside them. Both of them are starving. The one wolf is anger, envy, pride. The other one's truth, kindness. Every day they tear each other apart. But it's not the better wolf that wins. It's the one you feed. Cassie feeds the good one.

José Ramse: Good to have you back.
James Cole: Thanks, brother.
José Ramse: You look like shit.
James Cole: Take a look in the mirror.

[last lines]
James Cole: You know, the other you told me to ask you about the cost of all this, the sacrifice. Every time I splinter, it feels like I'm being ripped apart from the inside. If I stay, I'm not coming back, am I?
Katrina Jones: If you succeed, does it matter?
James Cole: No. But if I don't?
Katrina Jones: James. You and I, we're breaking the unwritten rules of the universe. But time, it's going to take what it's owed. Eventually, it will kill you.
James Cole: How many jumps have I got left?
Katrina Jones: Not as many as I'd like.
James Cole: Is there enough?
Katrina Jones: It has to be.

"12 Monkeys: The Keys (#1.7)" (2015)
James Cole: Listen, I want to tell you something. It won't make any sense to you now, but it will the next time you see me.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Okay. Okay.
James Cole: It's the Keys. Huh... I couldn't tell you before, because I was too embarrassed. It's the Keys in Florida. I saw a... picture of a... beach there in a magazine once. That's where I'd go.

Adam Wexler: The Army of the 12 Monkeys.
James Cole: You know them?
Adam Wexler: CIA monitors groups all over the world. I always liked the weird ones. I remember him. A briefing. Cryptic. 1987. A war with the Yakuza in... Tokyo. Place called The White Dragon.
James Cole: 1987. Leland said... What do they want? Why a plague?
Adam Wexler: Death, time, rebirth. Monkeys. Like hours on a clock.

Adam Wexler: Maybe a plague is precisely what the world needs. The liars die out. The living forget the lies. Society's great reset switch.
James Cole: It won't reset anything. Just turns us all back into animals.
Adam Wexler: I expose the truth to the world, and for that, I have been labeled a traitor. A monster. Maybe I should upload this plague to the masses. An analog solution for a digital problem. Give 'em a real virus this time. It'll be chaos, but then, order. Tell me, Cole. What about this world is worth saving if they would risk extinction to swat a fly?

Adam Wexler: You know, the CIA can murder and lie with impunity, in exchange for what? Order? Progress? Cell phones and the illusion of safety?
James Cole: I don't know what your deal is. But if you or anybody else who's infected walks outta here alive, it's over. For everyone.
Adam Wexler: I never thought that I would meet anyone more nihilistic than me.

Adam Wexler: Why are you so willing to die?
James Cole: I got it comin'. Other people don't. Order from chaos, it isn't real.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: Cole?
James Cole: I'm here. I'm still here.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Okay.
James Cole: I'm glad I got to know you, Cassie.

[last lines]
Dr. Cassandra Railly: What do you think will happen, when this is over? I know you say that the future will be saved and that you won't exist, but... what do you think happens? To you?
James Cole: I don't know. Wind up a better me in a better place, I hope.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: And what is that, that... place? What does it look like to you?
James Cole: [chuckles] I was in foster care, when I was little. The other kids used to have this game they'd play, talking about where they'd go if they could go anywhere. Exotic places, mostly, just stupid kid stuff.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Where was your place?
James Cole: [from Cassie's memory] "It's the Keys."
[Cole grunts; a soft rumbling starts]
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Cole, wait.
James Cole: What is it?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Goodbye.
[he splinters]

"12 Monkeys: Lullaby (#2.8)" (2016)
Jennifer Goines: Did you ever think of maybe doing something, but not doing it?
James Cole: I'm getting pretty tired of hearing you talk in circles.
Jennifer Goines: You're tired of hearing me talk in circles? I'm tired of you going around in them.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: I did what you asked me to do. I shot you several times.
James Cole: So did I.
Katarina Jones: Oh, I must be bulletproof!

Jennifer Goines: What needs to be done, first and foremost, what needs to be done to save the world, Cole?
James Cole: Get you to stop talking?

Dr. Cassandra Railly: What do you think Jennifer really meant?
James Cole: She said time knows Jones invented time travel, and it needs her to do it.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Did she also tell you that time has a long, white beard and a list of commandments - "Thou shall not splinter and kill the creator of time travel"?

James Cole: I remember this one time. Ramse and I were kids. Bumped into this group of guys coming out of a gun store. They were much older than us. There was five of them - just armloads of guns. They had these... green boxes of ammo at their feet. And they saw the two of us, out in the open, broad daylight. And they just lit us up. And we thought we were dead. Not a single bullet hit us. We thought it was some kind of miracle. Now, there's two ways to look at that story. The way I like to look at it: it wasn't our day to die. God or time, whatever, didn't want us to die. Thinking like that helped us through some hard times, believing that... there's something out there helping you out.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: What's the other way to look at it?
James Cole: Remington makes blanks. And they come in a green box.

James Cole: [Cole gently presses Cassie's hand] Cassie.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: You and I both know that we're gonna lose so much before this is over.
James Cole: I'd rather have that moment and lose it than die never having had it at all.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: You say that now. But it's the losing that haunts us.

"12 Monkeys: The Night Room (#1.5)" (2015)
James Cole: [about the grotesque remains of a human body] What the hell is that thing?
Jennifer Goines: The origin... of my father's virus.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: Notice anything weird about that place?
James Cole: I'm from the apocalypse. Everything here looks weird to me.

James Cole: You should get some rest.
Katrina Jones: So should you.
James Cole: Yeah, I never really sleep before a jump. Ramse and I usually knock a couple back. It's become a kind of pre-splinter tradition.
Katrina Jones: Now I know why our calculations are off. It's the alcohol in your bloodstream.

José Ramse: What the hell is wrong with you? Listen. I get that you're in a rush to delete yourself.
James Cole: Easy, man.
José Ramse: That one's in a mad dash too. You guys are being reckless.
James Cole: Look, we're getting close to the end of this thing, okay? If she's right about tomorrow...
José Ramse: All right. We'll never have happened. I get it.
James Cole: Yeah. And you won't be around to hear me say 'I told you so'.

James Cole: Ramse and I, we, uh... we had rules for ourselves. Never kill in anger, only for self-defense. And that became food and shelter. There was one day we raided this farmhouse. And there was this... old couple. The husband went down easy. But the old lady, she, uh... she was quick. She got a knife in me before I... And, uh... so I did it. She, uh... she looked up at me, and she smiled. Like she forgave me! And I never knew it before that moment. That was what I wanted.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Forgiveness?
James Cole: [nods] I don't deserve it. I know that. But still, ever since, that's what I've been rushing towards, you know, just trying to make everything make sense. And that's what this is. You know, if I can... if I can fix this. If I can fix it... then all of it won't have been for nothing.

Dr. Cassandra Railly: You're willing to do what is needed and I'm not. I can't. I just want to heal people. Fix things.
James Cole: That's good. You don't wanna be like me.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: No.

"12 Monkeys: Immortal (#2.6)" (2016)
Samuel Ramse: [shoots his Dad and Cole with rubber bands] Got you. You're both dead.
José Ramse: Nice job, buddy.
James Cole: You're supposed to be watching my back, man. You're high-fiving the enemy?
Samuel Ramse: Dead means no talking.
José Ramse: Oh, man, I think I got a flesh wound.
James Cole: Avenge me, brother.

Kyle Slade: You're not worthy. You're just like the others. You were meant to protect me.
James Cole: Only from a paradox.
Kyle Slade: I'm The Immortal. I'm not supposed to die.
James Cole: Everybody dies.

José Ramse: You follow her to Slade, wait till the Messengers come, and we take him out.
James Cole: We?
José Ramse: You're all leap, no look, little brother. You're going to get yourself killed.
James Cole: My hero.
José Ramse: It's either that or Jonesey sends me back in time to save your ass again.
James Cole: You're crazy about me. Just admit it.

José Ramse: Coffee's not bad.
James Cole: [drinking a Tab] I'll stick with this. This is good.
José Ramse: You ever had coffee?
James Cole: Yeah, I used to make coffee all the time when we were scavs.
José Ramse: That wasn't coffee.
James Cole: What do you mean "that wasn't coffee"? What was it? Seriously, what was it?

James Cole: Listen, man - you know I love...
José Ramse: Oh, what are you doing?
James Cole: What?
José Ramse: You don't say that.
James Cole: Say what?
José Ramse: You never say that.
James Cole: No, I was gonna say, I love whisky, and we should go find some and drink it.
José Ramse: No you weren't, you were gonna declare your undying love for me, brother.
James Cole: Don't flatter yourself, okay?
José Ramse: I heard you.
James Cole: You're emotional right now. I heard that happens to new parents.
José Ramse: Listen, I'm not being emotional. You're being an asshole.
[both laugh]
José Ramse: [quietly] Me too.

"12 Monkeys: One Hundred Years (#2.3)" (2016)
Dr. Cassandra Railly: This is a relationship I will never understand.
James Cole: You should hear what you just said.
Deacon: Oh, you're sore about us? I trained her to survive, just like I trained you. I'll tell you something - she's got a lot of talent.
James Cole: Except for that blind spot when it comes to pieces of shit like you.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: What is that suppose to mean?

[James has arrived in 1944 ahead of Cassie]
James Cole: Hey, you want to sit down, grab a drink or something? I've been drinking whiskey sours. You ever have one of those?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Oh, my God. You like it here.
James Cole: What's not to like?

[an FBI agent is asking James about his - alleged - time in the war]
James Cole: Listen, I really don't want to talk about it.
FBI Agent: As former G.I.s, we have an obligation to share our stories here.
James Cole: Listen, ass-hole, I'm just trying to have a drink.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: [butting in] There you are, James!
Dr. Cassandra Railly: [to the agent] Is my brother troubling you?
FBI Agent: Not at all. I just wanted to hear about this Seventh he was stationed with, what with him being a war hero and all.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: [matter-of-factly] My brother was in the Philippines, in '42.
FBI Agent: [taken aback] Bataan?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: He fought the Japanese for three months straight, before he was taken prisoner and forced to march 60 miles from Mariveles to San Fernando. When he finally escaped, he was shot twice, including... down there. So you will forgive him if he doesn't want to share his stories.
FBI Agent: I'm sorry, kid. Goddamn Japs. No hard feelings?
James Cole: No hard feelings.
[he shakes the man's hand and leaves with Cassie]
James Cole: Why did it have to be "down there"?

"12 Monkeys: Resurrection (#2.11)" (2016)
James Cole: Sometimes you got to lose to win.

Emissary: [about Jennifer] Mother won't leave. There's something wrong with her. She's been saying a lot of strange things lately.
James Cole: Sounds like regular Jennifer to me.

[Jennifer is dying]
Old Jennifer Goines: My Daughters need a Mother. Find a me who needs Daughters.
James Cole: Resurrection.

"12 Monkeys: Divine Move (#1.10)" (2015)
James Cole: Look, I know this is hard for you to understand...
Aaron Marker: No, I get it. The world is ending. You're a time traveler who doesn't know what he's doing.
James Cole: Back off.
Aaron Marker: You got her killed!
James Cole: And then I got her back!
Aaron Marker: Yeah, how many times're you gonna be able to do that? How many times does she have to die before you figure your shit out?
[Cole stands up]
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Cole.
Aaron Marker: You don't know. Do you?
Dr. Cassandra Railly: Stop it!
Aaron Marker: You're right about one thing. The future's pretty bleak, if you're all they got.

Katarina Jones: Where's Ramse?
James Cole: Tell me he won't get hurt.
Katarina Jones: Why would that matter if you are successful?
James Cole: Because getting Ramse killed can't be the last thing I do here.

[last lines]
Katarina Jones: James. Mr. Ramse survives the jump, he's going to try and stop you.
James Cole: And when he does, I'm gonna kill him.

"12 Monkeys: Arms of Mine (#1.13)" (2015)
[first lines]
James Cole: Where are you right now? Somewhere warm? Safe? Next to someone you love? Now, what if all that was gone, and the only thing you could do is survive? You would, right? You'd try. You'd do things - horrible things. Until you lose that last thing you have left: yourself. But what if you could take it back? All of it? A reset switch? You'd hit it, right? You'd have to, even if you didn't want to. Because sometimes the choice isn't even yours. It's fate.

Aaron Marker: You're no savior, Cole. You're just a savage.
James Cole: You want to know what makes a savage? Seeing shit no kid should ever see and then doing the same thing to survive. I was just a boy, watching the world die, alone. Now I know who I have to thank for that.
[he punches Aaron in the face]

[after Ramse has been critically injured, Cole helps him up]
José Ramse: [groggy] What're you doing?
James Cole: No one has to die. We'll find another way. We'll find another way.

"12 Monkeys: Paradox (#1.12)" (2015)
Katarina Jones (2015): You must be Mr. Cole.
James Cole: Jones. But how... You knew. You've always known me.
Katarina Jones (2015): It appears so. But maybe your 'always' and my 'always' are not the same.

James Cole: How long was I asleep?
Aaron Marker: You've been in and out of it for the last few days. I wouldn't exactly call what you were doing 'sleeping'. I've seen boxing matches that looked more restful.

Matthew Cole: The only failure...
James Cole: ...is giving up.

"12 Monkeys: Fatherland (#2.10)" (2016)
José Ramse: You know, we're always a step behind. For once, why don't we take the fight to them?
James Cole: Look who's all leap and no look now.
José Ramse: You know what the difference is, brother? I earned it.

Agent Robert Gale: Nefarious characters seem to coalesce around you like bum hairs in a drain.
James Cole: That's colorful.

"12 Monkeys: Tomorrow (#1.9)" (2015)
[Jones shows Cole the "machine"]
James Cole: The hell is that thing?
Katarina Jones: That is our salvation. The virus is not yet done with us, Mr. Cole. It will mutate, again and again, until not even the immune are left standing. There's only one way to end it. And you are the key. I want to send you back, to stop the plague before it ever happens.
James Cole: That's impossible.
Katarina Jones: Nothing is impossible. Difficult, yes. Dangerous. Not impossible. But there will be a price. If we are to reset time, all this before you will vanish. This world will cease to exist. This dark time must be sacrificed, to restore a brighter one. We have no other choice. And if all this disappears, so, too, shall we. And you and I, we will start anew. All humanity depends on us. But they will never know what we have done. And I'm grateful for that. So tell me, Mr. Cole. Will you help me?
James Cole: Go to hell.

James Cole: I watched the world die, Ramse. Everyone. I watched her die.
José Ramse: It's meant to happen, brother. She's always gonna die.

"12 Monkeys: Primary (#2.2)" (2016)
[Katarina turns on a radio]
James Cole: What is that?
Katarina Jones: Music, James. And more to the point: it's a broadcast. Shortwave. From somewhere out there! What you and Dr. Railly did in 2016, changed things. Here: our records show that some of the quarantine zones didn't fall as quickly as before. So there were more survivors. Human lives spared, because we dared to challenge fate! Do you know what that is? It's hope, Mr. Cole.

James Cole: I was sent back in time to kill a man. That was supposed to fix everything. It didn't. So I killed more people. Nothing changed. And then I saved someone. Someone who should've died. And *that*, that is what changed things. It's the only thing that's ever made any difference.

"12 Monkeys: Shonin (#1.11)" (2015)
James Cole: I should've killed you when Deacon told me to.
José Ramse: I should've killed you when we were kids.

[last lines]
James Cole: They were one step ahead of us the whole way. Now I know why.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: How?
James Cole: I know who the Witness is.

"12 Monkeys: Hyena (#2.9)" (2016)
Jennifer Goines: Tell me what happens. How does this end?
James Cole: There are many endings.
Jennifer Goines: Which is the right one?
Future Jennifer: [from Cole's memory] The right one...
James Cole, Future Jennifer: ...is the one you choose.

"12 Monkeys: Yesterday (#1.8)" (2015)
[last lines]
James Cole: The virus. It got out?
Aza: Of course. There's been a plague, all over the world.
James Cole: What year is it? What year is this?
Aza: 2017.
James Cole: No, when they tried to pull me back I jumped two years.

"12 Monkeys: Atari (#1.4)" (2015)
James Cole: Maybe things happen the way they do for a reason.
José Ramse: If that's true, then why undo it at all?

"12 Monkeys: Cassandra Complex (#1.3)" (2015)
James Cole: [teaching Cassandra to shoot] That's good. You're steady. First time I shot a gun, the kickback knocked me on my ass. You're steady.
Dr. Cassandra Railly: That's because I'm tougher than you.
James Cole: [chuckles] I believe that.

"12 Monkeys: Emergence (#2.4)" (2016)
José Ramse: [in 1944] Almost time.
James Cole: [to the FBI agent] You're gonna want to see this.
Dr. Adler: [in 2044] Katarina! Katarina, it worked, he did it. Mr. Ramse placed the ad and gave us the encrypted coordinates.
Katarina Jones: Lock into these. Let's bring them home!
[in 1944, Ramse, Cole and Cassie are waiting to splinter back to the future. Ramse disappears first]
Dr. Cassandra Railly: [to FBI man] Yeah, you won't forget it.
[disappears as well]
James Cole: H. G. Wells.
[chuckles, and vanishes into thin air]
FBI Agent: Holy shit.