|“||Heed my warning: Do not proceed for this room can be your sanctuary or it can be your grave.||”|
— Jigsaw's final warning for Strahm[src]
Design and Function
This trap was located in a secret room inside the abandoned Gideon Meatpacking Plant. It was a cube-shaped glass box which was suspended from the ceiling by two metal bars. On the bottom of the cube was a hole for the victim's head. While the test subject could easily be trapped in the cube, the person couldn't free himself without help due to the brim of the hole being lined with rubber that laid tightly around the victim's neck. Suspended from the ceiling as well were two bottle-shaped water tanks with two tubes that were put through the top of the cube. Once the game began, the cube would quickly fill in with water, thereby inevitably drowning the victim. This trap wasn't meant as a test itself but rather as an execution device to punish the victim that failed his task in a previous test. (Saw V)
|“||Hello, Agent Strahm. If you're hearing this, then you've finally found what you've been looking for. But is the discovery of my body enough? Or will your insatiable hunger to uncover the truth push you deeper into the abyss? Heed my warning: Do not proceed for this room can be your sanctuary or it can be your grave. The choice is yours.||”|
— Peter Strahm's tape[src]
The victim of this trap was Peter Strahm, a special agent investigating the serial killer case of John Kramer, better known as the Jigsaw Killer. Therefore, he was targeted by the killer himself and had to face a test on his own. By following the clues left for him, Strahm had ultimately managed to find John Kramer's hideout at the abandoned Gideon Meatpacking Plant. Thereby, he found the corpses of John and his apprentice, Amanda Young, after their deaths at the hands of Jeff Denlon, one of their victims. Upon entering the room with the corpses, Strahm was threatened by Jeff with a gun and therefore shot him in self-defense, killing him. When he went further into the room, he found the humiliated corpse of another victim, Dr. Lynn Denlon, Jeff's wife. As he was too distracted, Strahm didn't notice how Detective Mark Hoffman, John's other apprentice and future successor, approached him from behind and locked him up inside the room along with the corpses. Seconds later, the lights in the room were turned off. Strahm attempted to open the door. However this attempt remained a failure. Therefore he tried to call the police, but this attempt failed as well as he had no signal. While looking for another way out, he eventually noticed the outlines of a hidden door as they glowed green due to a special fluorescent color. Upon opening it, he discovered a hallway and a tape recorder hanging from the ceiling. The tape, recorded by John Kramer, told him to stay where he was until the police arrived. However, Strahm refused to do so, and entered the secret hallway behind the door, leaving the dead bodies behind him. Eventually, he reached a room at the end of the hallway. However, only moments after he went in, he was attacked by a disguised Hoffman, who had been waiting for him and injected him with an anaesthetic. Moments later, Strahm passed out. Afterwards, Hoffman put him in the Water Cube in the same room.
When Strahm woke up again, he immediately panicked when he realized that his head was trapped in a glass cube. Frightened by the situation, he screamed for help and tried to free himself. While looking around, he noticed two tubes inserted through the top of the cube, which were connected to two water tanks. Moments later, after searching his pockets for anything useful, he saw all of his possessions on a barrel before him. Therefore, he tried to escape the cube by brute force, when suddenly, the cube began to fill with water. Realizing the dangerousness of the situation, Strahm further panicked as the water level increased quickly. After a matter of seconds, the cube was filled entirely. However, at this moment, Strahm finally found his pen in his pocket. In a last desperate attempt to survive, he rammed the pen in his throat, removed the ball pen refill and thereby successfully perfomed a tracheotomy on himself which enabled him to breath. Minutes later, he was found by the police and a team of paramedics, who saved him from the trap and took him to the Saint Eustace Hospital. (Saw V).
As the Metropolitan Police Department secured and searched the entire building, they discovered the many corpses of Jigsaw's victims. All of them were sent to the morgue for their obduction by Dr. Adam Heffner and the Water Cube was sent to the evidence room. (Saw V, VI, 3D).
Eventually, the Jigsaw murders came to an end. However, Jigsaw had a lot of admirers who praised him for his philosophy. One particularly passionate admirer of his work was Eleanor Bonneville, a pathologist working for the Metropolitan Police Department. At one point, she bought a building which she used as a studio and a storage for several replicas of Jigsaw's traps that she built on her own with materials she bought from the internet. Among these replicas was also one of the Water Cube.
Ten years after the murder series had come to an end, new victims turned up all around the city. Eventually, Eleanor and her mentor, Dr. Logan Nelson, were both suspected to be responsible for the killings by Detective Halloran, who investigated the case. Therefore, he ordered Detective Keith Hunt to follow and observe the two of them. Eventually, Eleanor showed her studio to Logan, who was apparently shocked and told her to get rid of the replicas as soon as possible. Unnoticed by them, Keith took numerous photos of the studio and showed them to Halloran.
Use in other Media
A trap which looked very similar to the Water Cube could be seen in the video game Saw II: Flesh & Blood. During his series of tests, Michael Tapp, another victim of Jigsaw, came across this trap. By the time he found it, the unknown victim of the trap, who was strapped to a wheelchair, had already met his demise. However, the box was filled with acid instead of water. As there was no instruction tape found in the closer environment, it is unknown how the victim was supposed to escape this trap.
- Strahm's pen was an important prop in Saw IV. Ever since his introduction, Strahm was seen in almost every appearance nervously clicking his pen to relieve stress. In the trap scene in Saw V, that plot point paid off.
Public Execution Trap • Pain Train • Horsepower Trap • Lawnmower Trap • Bobby's Trial • Suspended Cage • Silence Circle • Impalement Wheel • Hangman's Noose • Wisdom Teeth Combination • Brazen Bull • Sentry Gun Trap • Cyanide Box • Reverse Beartrap