Benjamin Linus is a long-time resident of the Island and a leader of the Others. Though often a calm, eloquent antagonist, Ben's insecurity and jealousies sometimes brought out a petulant, reckless side. He remained, however, an expert manipulator, a liar and a murderer, and he served as a main adversary for much of the series.
Ben came to the Island a polite, quiet eight-year-old, the son of an abusive DHARMA Initiative janitor. He met the island's natives, who healed him after a prisoner he freed shot him, and he remained in touch as he grew and worked for the DHARMA Initiative. Ben eventually helped these "Hostiles" kill the Initiative members, and he later ousted and replaced their leader, Charles Widmore. As their new leader, Ben tried to solve the Island's pregnancy issues, and he raised an adoptive daughter, Alex, as one of the Others.
In 2004, Ben developed cancer, but the crash brought a surgeon, Jack Shephard. After entering the survivors' camp as a prisoner under the name Henry Gale, Ben kidnapped Jack and manipulated him into operating. He also met John Locke, who threatened his leadership, and Ben's older rival Widmore meanwhile sent a ship to the Island to capture him. A mercenary from the boat killed Alex thanks to Ben's negligence. To protect the Island, Ben moved it, letting several survivors escape and leaving Locke as his successor.
He spent the next few years on the mainland, and though he failed to kill Widmore's daughter as promised, he eliminated much of the man's organization using Sayid, a survivor who escaped. He murdered Locke, who'd come to retrieve those who'd left, but he continued Locke's mission and returned the survivors to the Island. There, the monster judged him for Alex's death and took the form of Locke, convincing Ben to kill Jacob, the Island's protector. Confidence and power lost, Ben became the survivors' apologetic ally. Hurley became the new protector, and Ben served for years as his advisor.
After death, Ben was a teacher of his previous 'daughter', Alex. As his acquaintances from the Island moved on, he chose to stay behind to work out his issues.
Before the crash
Ben Linus was born on December 19, 1964, early in his mother, Emily's, third trimester. Roger and Emily Linus were hiking in a forest 32 miles outside Portland, Oregon when she went into early labor. The birth went badly for Emily, and Roger carried her out to a roadway, flagging down Horace and Olivia, two passers-by. Ben lived, but Emily died, her last words a request that Roger name the child Benjamin. (Podcast) ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Horace, a DHARMA Initiative mathematician, got Roger a job as a janitor, bringing him and Ben to the Island in 1973. The Initiative routinely faced attacks from hostile natives, and Roger, now an alcoholic, neglected his son. Ben did make one friend on the Island - a young girl named Annie. On Ben's ninth birthday, Annie carved two dolls, likenesses of the two children, and Ben kept them for the next 30 years. That same night, he saw his mother's ghost in the jungle. He later packed his belongings and went out in search of her, and he came upon Richard Alpert, one of the Hostiles. Richard was intrigued to learn Ben had seen someone who'd died off the Island, and he said Ben may be able to join the Hostiles one day if he was patient. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Three years later, Ben thought he found his chance when he heard that DHARMA had imprisoned one of the Hostiles. Ben brought the man a book and food (earning Roger's abuse) and later broke him out of his cell, setting fire to a van to distract those watching. But the prisoner turned out not to be a Hostile at all - he was Sayid, a time traveler from Ben's future, and he shot Ben in the jungle, leaving him for dead. Other time travelers who had infiltrated DHARMA, worked to rescue the boy. Jin brought him back to the Barracks, Juliet operated on him and Kate donated blood. When it became clear that they could not save him, they brought him to Richard. The boy was healed in the spring of the Others' Temple. The experience robbed him of his recent memories and changed him forever. According to Richard, from this point on, he would "always be one of us". ("Namaste") ("He's Our You") ("Whatever Happened, Happened")
With DHARMA and the Others
Ben likely remained at the Temple while the Island was evacuated for an emergency. While there, he met the Hostiles' leader Charles Widmore and learned that despite Richard's words, he was not yet fully an Other. For at least another decade, Ben would remain with the DHARMA Initiative, eventually becoming a "workman" like his father. But he remained in touch with the Others, and when Widmore ordered the Initiative eliminated, Ben sided with the Hostiles. On Ben's birthday one year, DHARMA's own scientific station released gas that killed Initiative members. Ben killed his father personally with a separate gas canister, responding to years of ill-treatment. Richard offered to retrieve Roger's body, but Ben declined. ("Follow the Leader") ("Dead Is Dead") ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Though he'd helped defeat the Others' enemies, Ben still answered to Widmore, and the two maintained a rivalry before and after the Purge. In 1988, Widmore ordered Ben to kill a french woman who'd crashed onto the Island. Ben discovered she had a baby girl and spared them both, kidnaping the baby and bringing her to the Others. Widmore initially ordered the baby killed as well but eventually relented and allowed Ben to raise her. Widmore had a daughter of his own with a woman from off the Island, and when Ben discovered this some years later, he had Widmore exiled and replaced him as Leader of the Others. ("Dead Is Dead")
Leader of the Others
Like Widmore, Ben frequently traveled to the mainland, developing a wide network of resources and several identities. Yet he restricted most of his people from leaving the Island and used deception and secrecy to control them. Ben found himself a victim of secrecy as well - despite being the Others' leader, Ben never got to visit the Island's Protector, Jacob. Jacob communicated only through Richard and sent Ben instructions and lists. ("The Economist") ("The Man from Tallahassee") ("The Incident, Part 1")
Instead of Jacob's larger goals, Ben focused the Others on how pregnancy killed Island women, much as it had once killed Emily Linus. Pregnancy fears left him overprotective of his now-teenage daughter, who grew to resent him. ("The Brig") ("I Do") In 2001, the Others recruited a fertility specialist, Juliet Burke. Ben shadowed her devotedly, his feelings for her an open secret on the Island. According to his therapist, Juliet reminded him of someone from his past, and when she began an affair with the therapist's husband Goodwin, Ben grew jealous and confined her to the Island. According to Ben, the Island had healed Juliet's sister of cancer and could take back that gift if she left. But in September 2004, Juliet discovered a cancerous tumor on Ben's own spine, shaking her faith in Ben and Ben's faith in the Island. ("I Do") ("The Other Woman") ("One of Us")
After the crash
On September 22nd, 2004 on what should have been an ordinary day, Ben did not attend the book club hosted by Juliet due to their altercation. However, he was summoned outside when a small tremor was felt in the Barracks. He left his house, glancing left and right for a few moments before looking to the sky. As the Others join Ben in looking to the sky, they hear a load roar and shriek as they witness the crash of Oceanic Flight 815. Immediately taking action, he ordered Ethan and Goodwin to the mid-section and tail-section crash sites respectively. During this time Juliet, Goodwin and Harper shared nervous eye contact all knowing that this was Ben's way of punishing Goodwin for his romance with Juliet. He hoped that he would die on the dangerous mission ahead of him. He told them to act as shocked survivors, to listen, learn and not get involved, requested lists to be presented in three days and sent the two men away. In this midst of all the chaos, he still approached Juliet and nonchalant guessed that he was out of the book club. He then asked Juliet to follow him. ("A Tale of Two Cities") ("One of Us") ("The Other Woman")
Ben took Juliet on a walk to the Flame station where they met Mikhail who was watching the feed of news reports of Oceanic Flight 815 and creating the in-depth files on the survivors. He asked Mikhail to uplink him to Richard in Acadia Park. Telling Juliet he was hurt when she called him a liar, he asked her to note the date of the newspaper on the screen, 22nd September. The camera then showed Rachel and her infant son playing in the park, showing that he didn't lie and she was alive and well. A teary Juliet gripped the screen with joy, but Ben coldly turned off the screen telling Richard to return soon. Juliet began to beg once more for Ben to allow her to return home but he refused, saying she still hadn't concluded his work. When Juliet pleaded that her work was becoming impossible, Ben refused to listen, saying there might even be a mother on the plane. ("One of Us")
Three weeks after, Ben invited Juliet to a dinner party under the pretence that it would be a group dinner, but it turned out to be a private date between the two. Ben thanked her for being so good with Zach and Emma and Juliet questioned whether they should be with them, and not with their mother in Los Angeles, but Ben replied that they were on the list "and who are we to question who is on the list." The idyllic evening was broken when Juliet mentioned Goodwin, wondering when he would be returning. In a bid to make her jealous, he reported that Goodwin couldn't return just yet and that he was making a case for a woman named Ana Lucia to join their society - hinting of an inappropriate relationship between the two. Ben finished with "there is no reason for him to hurry back, but his assignment will be over soon."
Later, Ben came to see Juliet in her lab where she was reading Jack's file provided to her by Mikhail. Ben had something on his mind and didn't seem overjoyed when Juliet told him of Jack's surgical skills, especially against tumors. Telling her that Tom and Pickett had been tracking the tail-section survivors' movements, he told her that they found something. Ben then showed her Goodwin's dead body, still impaled on the stick that killed him and told her there were no witnesses when she asked him what had happened. Tearful, Juliet asked Ben if he sent Goodwin away to die after Ben revealed that he knew of the affair. When Juliet asked why he showed her this, he replied, "After everything I did to get you here, after everything I've done to keep you here, how can you possibly not understand... that you're mine?" Those last words filled Juliet with hate and fear. He allowed her as much time as she needed to grieve her lost lover. ("The Other Woman")
44 days after the crash, Walt Lloyd was kidnapped from his father's raft and taken to the Hydra Island where he was kept in Room 23 after Jacob's instruction to do so. Sometime during his stay there he caused an alarm to ring and Ben, flustered, arrived to find Juliet outside. He then learned that none of his people wanted to go inside and they all feared Walt. When Ben said that he was just a child, Juliet took him outside and, to disprove his point, showed him a variety of dead birds by the boarded window. ("Room 23")
Sometime later, around 49 days after the crash, while Paulo was hiding the diamonds in the Pearl station, Ben and Juliet entered, forcing him to hide in the toilet. Unaware of Paulo's presence, Ben had the monitors switch to a feed from the Swan station where he showed Juliet 'Shephard' for the first time. By this time, their relationship seemed very distant and hardly the same from the day they first met. Juliet questioned how they were going to get Jack to do the surgery, and Ben replied that they would exploit what he was emotionally invested in and they'd use 'Ford' and 'Austen' to do just that, and they'd have Michael lead them to the Others. They left unaware Paulo had heard the whole exchange, but nonetheless he did not tell anyone what he had heard. ("Exposé")
Days 58–67 (Season 2)
Ben was captured by Danielle Rousseau in a net trap. She handed him over to Sayid on November 18, 2004. Danielle shot Ben with a crossbow during an escape attempt, after which he was kept prisoner in the armory of the Swan station. Danielle said Ben would lie for a long time before he told the truth and handed him over to Sayid, presumably to be tortured.
As a prisoner, Ben claimed to be Henry Gale, a wealthy miner from Wayzata, Minnesota who crashed onto the Island with his wife Jennifer in a hot air balloon. Sayid and Locke did not believe his claims, but Jack was more open-minded to the possibility that he was telling the truth. "Henry" further claimed his wife had died of a mysterious sickness, a story he maintained even during a brutal interrogation by Sayid. During this interrogation, Sayid became ever more suspicious of "Henry's" story when he didn't know the exact details of his wife's burial and, still grieving the loss of Shannon, Sayid began beating him, telling him "you would remember!" The three men decided not to disclose the captive's existence to the rest of the group, though Sayid decided to tell Charlie about Ben's presence, and Eko and Ana Lucia later discovered him as well. ("One of Them")
Eko, who seemed to believe that Ben was one of the Others, confessed privately to Ben that he had killed two of them during his first night on the Island and that he was very sorry for what he had done. He punctuated this by cutting two outgrowths off his beard with a large knife.
Ben could hear events in the Swan outside his prison in the gun vault and was therefore aware of the tension between Locke and Jack. Using this knowledge, he attempted to manipulate Locke into feuding with Jack by telling him that he appeared to be in Jack's shadow. Locke became angry enough to take out his rage on objects at the Swan, foreshadowing future manipulations of his behavior toward Jack. At one point, Locke seemed to become aware that his mind was being played with. He angrily grabbed Ben by the shirt and tossed him back into the armory. ("Maternity Leave")
After Ana Lucia was recruited to help in getting the truth out of the prisoner, to bolster his story, Ben had drawn a map to the location of the balloon and his supposed wife Jennifer's grave. After a group left to follow the map, Jack and Locke allowed Ben out of the armory for some breakfast where his mind games continued as he professed to the two that, if he was one of them, he would have a team ready to ambush the search party. This worried Jack and Locke and was made more uncomfortable as Ben finished with "I guess it's a good thing I'm not one of them, huh? You guys got any milk?" ("The Whole Truth")
Later that day, there was a lockdown incident at the Swan station, and Locke, whose legs had been pinned under a blast door, was forced to enlist "Henry" to push the button. Locke did not witness what happened as the lockdown ended, though Ben told him he did not push the button and nothing happened. Meanwhile, Sayid, Ana Lucia, and Charlie followed the map and found the site exactly as described, but Sayid was still sceptical. He exhumed the corpse and discovered not a woman, but a man identified by his driver's license as Henry Gale. Shortly thereafter, the search party returned and revealed that the man they knew as "Henry" was an impostor and an Other; the real Henry Gale was dead and buried. ("Lockdown")
Sayid tried to get Ben to answer questions about the Others, but Ben said his leader would kill him if he did. Sayid almost executed Ben but was stopped by Ana Lucia. Ben looked shocked when Ana Lucia referred to Tom as his leader and said, "Him? He's no one! Nothing!" He referred to his true leader only as "Him," saying he was a great man. In protest to his captivity, Ben refused to eat, drink, or speak for two days. He told the survivors that the Others would never give them Walt in exchange for him and caused Locke to question his beliefs when he claimed he did not push the button. ("Dave") ("S.O.S.")
Later, Ben tried to strangle Ana Lucia, accusing her of killing two good people and telling her that Goodwin had tried to convince the Others that she was worthy of being on the list. He also strongly implied that Goodwin would never have tried to kill her. His attempt to strangle Ana Lucia was thwarted by Locke, who later neglected to tell Jack about the incident. Locke eventually revealed the information, but only when it seemed too late after Ana Lucia had gone to murder Ben. However, shortly after Michael returned to the camp, he murdered Ana Lucia and Libby, then released Ben. Ben appeared to leave no tracks as he escaped. ("Two for the Road")
Ben's actions as he directed the Walt exchange at the Pala Ferry pier made him appear to be the leader of the Others. He mildly reprimanded Tom for not wearing his beard. He told Michael that while he was unhappy with the deal his people had made with him, they had gotten "more than we bargained for" when Walt had joined them. When asked by Michael, "Who are you people?" he replied, "We're the good guys," reiterating a sentiment that had been expressed by various members of the Others. Finally, he told Michael that he would never find the Island again even if he tried, echoing his claim as a prisoner at the Swan that even God could not see the Island. ("Live Together, Die Alone, Part 2")
Days 68–91 (Season 3)
On Hydra Island
The Others escorted Jack, Kate, and Sawyer to the Hydra station. There, Tom told Kate to shower and gave her a dress to wear, then took her in handcuffs to the beach to have a nice, civilized breakfast with Ben. Ben said the reason for this was that he wanted her to "feel like a lady" and to have "something to look back on" over the next two weeks, which he promised would be "extremely unpleasant." Later, Ben witnessed Jack overpower Juliet and confronted him outside his cell. When Jack attempted to open the underwater door Ben retreated back out the hallway, locking both Jack and Juliet inside. He later congratulated Juliet on interrogating Jack. ("A Tale of Two Cities")
Ben watched the activities of Kate, Sawyer, and Jack on video surveillance monitors in the Hydra. As he was monitoring the feeds, Juliet entered the room carrying soup for Jack. Ben quipped, "You never made soup for me." Colleen entered and told Ben that Sayid had found the decoy village and had a sailboat. Ben ordered Colleen, in no uncertain terms, to recover the boat and bring it back.
Later that day, Ben visited Jack in his cell. He commented on the irony of the situation, as less than a week ago, Ben had been a captive and Jack the captor. He introduced himself as Benjamin Linus and lied, saying that he had been on the Island his entire life. He told Jack that if he cooperated, he would take him home when the time came. Jack was skeptical. Ben then revealed that the Others were in contact with the outside world, and proceeded to detail real-life events that had happened during their time on the Island, such as Christopher Reeve's death and the Boston Red Sox winning the World Series. Jack did not believe him, so Ben showed him a video of the winning game. He finished by saying, "That's home, Jack. Right there, on the other side of that glass. And if you listen to me, if you trust me, if you do what I tell you, when the time comes, I'll take you there. I will take you home." ("The Glass Ballerina")
Ben's depth of control became even more evident when he interrupted Juliet's conversation with Jack, ordering her to come and assist him. Juliet had just told Jack that she and Ben "make decisions together," but it appeared this was not the case, much like the situation with Jack and Locke while Ben was being held in the Swan.
When Sawyer was planning on escaping once more from his cage, another side of Ben's character emerged: an aggressive side. Sawyer's escape plan involved an electric shock to himself and whichever Other would be standing in the puddle he created. It was Ben who was moving closer to the puddle, but Sawyer's plan failed; Ben had turned off the electricity. Ben asked Sawyer his age and weight, then jumped into the cage and beat him with a baton to the point of unconsciousness.
Ben watched in one of the Hydra's rooms as Matthew stuck a needle into Sawyer's chest, mentioning that he hated needles. When Sawyer regained consciousness, Ben showed him a caged rabbit bearing the number 8 on its back. Ben proceeded to shake the cage violently. This frightened the rabbit, which quickly went limp. Ben told Sawyer that the rabbit had a pacemaker, and that now Sawyer did too. He gave him a special watch that would begin beeping when Sawyer's heart rate exceeded 125 bpm. If it went above 140 bpm, his heart would explode. Ben then told him the same fate would befall Kate if Sawyer revealed what the Others had done to him. ("Every Man for Himself")
The next morning, Ben took Sawyer for a walk up a steep path. They exchanged mild banter, and then Sawyer's heart monitor began to beep due to the exercise. Sawyer asked if Ben brought him up there just to kill him, and Ben revealed there was no pacemaker at all. He told Sawyer that the rabbit was only given a sedative and wasn't actually dead, because the Others aren't "killers." Ben said he did all this because the only way to earn the respect of a con man was to con him.
Finally, Ben and Sawyer reached the top of the mountain. From their viewpoint, they could see an island about two miles offshore. Ben told Sawyer that the island on which they stood wasn't the same Island he and the other survivors had come to call home. Thus, he showed Sawyer that even if he escaped, there would be nowhere to run. ("Every Man for Himself")
That night, Ben took Jack to Colleen's funeral. He was dressed in a white smock shirt, as were all of the Others, in what seemed to simulate a traditional Viking funeral. Jack asked about the symptoms of Ben's tumor, referring to X-rays he had seen earlier. Jack dropped the issue when Ben pretended that he didn't know what he meant. At the funeral, Ben asked Juliet why she had told Jack about the X-rays, to which she replied, "I didn't tell him they were yours. But I guess you did," implying that Ben had just confirmed Jack's guesswork.
As Juliet fed Jack breakfast, Ben burst in and demanded to talk to Jack. When Juliet pressed him, he said they needed to be alone because of "doctor-patient confidentiality." Once alone, Ben told Jack that he'd had a great plan to "break" him and wear him down so that he would do whatever he was told. However, he said that plan got "shot to sunshine" when Jack saw the X-rays and figured out that Ben was dying. When Jack asked if Ben wanted him to save his life, Ben replied, "No, I want you to want to save my life." When Ben asked if Jack was religious, Jack turned the question back on him. Ben replied, "Two days after I found out I had a fatal tumor on my spine, a spinal surgeon fell out of the sky. And if that's not proof of God, I don't know what is." ("The Cost of Living")
When Ben realized that he needed surgery within the week, he asked Jack about the prospect of performing it. At first, Jack seemed willing, checking that they had the necessary equipment. But then Jack said that this behavior was all a ploy to get back at Ben for the way he had been treated. Ben reacted unemotionally to the news that his tumor would become inoperable within a week, though clearly he was inwardly shaken. When Jack refused to do the surgery, Ben told Jack he was disappointed, to which Jack replied that at least he wouldn't have to be disappointed for very long.
Soon after, Jack explored the observation room in the Hydra and saw Kate and Sawyer after they'd had sex. Ben walked in on him and tried to bait him, saying, "If I were a betting man, I would have picked her and you." He knew that the sight of seeing Sawyer and Kate together would make Jack want to get off the Island; Jack, now angry, agreed to do the surgery.
All seemed to go well for the first leg of the operation, but then Jack purposefully made a slit in Ben's kidney sac. He told Juliet and Tom that Ben would die within an hour if the damage was not repaired. Now Ben was Jack's hostage and he demanded that Kate and Sawyer be set free or he would let Ben die. ("I Do")
Later, Ben awakened while still on the operating table and seemed to understand his situation as a hostage, even conceding that Jack had outplayed him. Apparently, he also heard Jack tell Tom that Juliet had wanted him to "make a mistake" in surgery so that Ben would die. Ben asked for a private conversation with Juliet, after which she left the operating room and announced that the Others had to let Kate and Sawyer leave. Having confirmed the safety of his friends, Jack put Ben back under anesthesia and completed the surgery. After nicking an artery and enlisting Tom's help in Juliet's absence, Jack successfully removed the tumor but suggested it be tested for malignancy. ("Not in Portland")
Shortly after his surgery, Ben developed an infection around his stitches. Jack initially refused to help Ben any further, but later agreed to treat him in exchange for him commuting Juliet's death sentence, which she had received for killing Pickett. Ben agreed to this, but ordered that Juliet be marked instead. Along with Jack, he accompanied the rest of the Others to their home on the main Island, as their location on Hydra Island was no longer secret following the escape of Kate and Sawyer. ("Stranger in a Strange Land")
At the barracks
Around this time Ben found out that Charles Widmore finally found the location of the island. He sent Tom to New York City to find Michael and send him as a spy aboard the freighter that would be leaving from Fiji. ("Meet Kevin Johnson")
Upon returning to the island, Ben was seen playing a game of chess with Jack. Ben commented that if Jack were ever to leave the Island, the day would come when he would want to return. Jack responded, saying, "Never," to which Ben said, "I've learned never to say never." After talking some more, Ben made a move to win the chess game. He looked up at Jack and said, "It was a nice try though." ("King of the Castle")
About a week later, Locke showed up at the Barracks and confronted Ben, who was still debilitated and confined to a wheelchair. He was thankful to Locke for blowing up the submarine so that he would not have to let Jack and Juliet go. He also promised to reveal the secrets of the Island to Locke, and started by showing him that the Others had Locke's father, Anthony Cooper, in captivity. ("The Man from Tallahassee")
Later that night in his secret room, Ben made a phone call to the freighter, pretending to be Walt. He seemed shocked when Michael said he had activated the bomb. He went on to say in a war he will do what he has to do to win, but he will not kill innocent people, commenting that the others did not ask Michael to kill Ana Lucia and Libby, but that he did it on his own. He then told Michael to get him a list of names of everyone on the boat, destroy the communications equipment and then the engines, telling Michael that if he did so he could "consider himself one of the good guys." ("Meet Kevin Johnson")
Ben accompanied the Others as they vacated the barracks, but not before sending Juliet on an undercover mission to infiltrate the beach community. He told her that he would see her again in one week. ("One of Us")
After leaving the barracks
When the Others deserted the Barracks, Ben brought Locke along. After they reached the ruins, he demonstrated to Locke that he could walk with a cane and told him that it was due to his presence. He also told Locke that he must kill his father in order to fulfill his potential. That night, he tried to get Locke to do just that, giving him a knife and showing him his father tied to the ruins. Locke was unable to commit murder, and the next morning Ben told him the Others were leaving him and his father behind. He said they would leave a trail Locke could follow, but that he shouldn't bother unless he came carrying his dead father. ("The Brig")
Two days later, on his birthday, Ben realized that his tape recorder was missing. Unknown to him, Locke had stolen it and given it to Sawyer. Before he could deal with this, Locke walked into the camp bearing his father's dead body. Ben told Locke about Jacob and Locke demanded to be taken to him. Ben refused, saying he was the only person who had ever seen Jacob. Locke accused him of lying to everyone. Mikhail appeared with news of the arrival of Naomi, interrupting Locke and Ben's conversation. Locke announced that Ben would be taking him to see Jacob before doing anything else. Ben tried to put him off with Mikhail's news, but Locke, in order to regain priority, beat Mikhail senseless. Ben could not rouse any of the Others to help Mikhail as he was being beaten by Locke. Ben finally agreed to take Locke to Jacob. Before their departure, Alex gave Locke a gun as a "birthday present" to her dad. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
The two men crossed a gray ash border that surrounded Jacob's cabin. Ben told Locke to put his flashlight away, saying, "He feels the same way about technology as you do." He knocked on the door, announcing their presence to Jacob. Ben began to speak to an empty chair, claiming Jacob was sitting in it. Locke, believing Ben to be insane, started to leave, but stopped as a deep voice said, "Help me." He turned and asked Ben to repeat what he had just said. Ben had not said or heard anything, and realized that Jacob must have spoken to Locke. Locke pulled out his flashlight, causing Jacob to react in outrage. Ben tried to calm him but was thrown across the room in Jacob's fury. Locke then left the cabin, with Ben close behind. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
The next day, Ben led Locke to an open pit filled with the bodies of the DHARMA Initiative. Ben told Locke that he wasn't born on the Island, and that when the DHARMA Initiative couldn't live peacefully with the natives, the natives began to purge the Island of the Initiative with his help. He then shot Locke, sending him into the pit, and demanded to know what Jacob had said to him. Locke told him Jacob's words: "Help me." Ben was wounded by this, and left Locke to the mercies of Jacob. ("The Man Behind the Curtain")
Ben returned to the Others' temporary camp and thanked Alex sarcastically for giving Locke the gun, knowing what her real intentions were. He then ordered Richard and Pryce to conduct the planned raid on the survivors' camp a day early, telling them to kidnap all of the women and kill all of the men stupid enough to get in their way. When Richard questioned this course of action, Ben said he was following Jacob's orders. ("Greatest Hits")
That evening, while writing in his diary, Ben was informed by Greta and Bonnie via radio that Charlie had reached the Looking Glass station. Ben ordered Mikhail to travel there and kill Charlie, and attempted to contact the crew in charge of the raid. He was not able to reach them, as they had turned their radios off in preparation for their attack on the camp. Ben was contacted later by Tom, who informed him that the raid had gone awry and that several Others were killed, but that Sayid, Jin, and Bernard had been captured. Ben ordered Tom to threaten to shoot Jin to make one of the captives talk. Bernard broke down and Ben learned that Juliet and Karl had leaked the information about the raid. He also found out that the destination of the survivors was the radio tower.
Ben commanded Richard to take the Others to the Temple while he went alone to the radio tower to stop the survivors. When Alex demanded to go along, Ben didn't put up a fight. At a stop during the journey, Alex confronted Ben about his treatment of Karl. He explained that his actions towards Karl, including keeping him in one of the cages and later in Room 23, were motivated by his fear of her getting pregnant. When Alex questioned why he couldn't just let Jack and the other survivors escape the Island, his only answer was, "Because I can't!" ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 1")
Upon encountering the survivors, Ben persuaded Jack to talk with him alone for five minutes. Once alone with Jack, Ben alluded to his own past role in the purge and warned Jack that contacting Naomi's boat would result in death for everyone on the Island. He quickly realized that Jack was unmoved by his revelation, so he radioed Tom with orders to kill Sayid, Jin, and Bernard if Tom did not hear back from Ben in one minute. Ben gave Jack that minute to fetch Naomi's radio and give it to him. Jack refused, and gunshots were heard over Ben's radio. Jack punched Ben in the face several times and dragged him back to the survivors. Ben fell to the ground, and Alex came toward him with concern. Ben noticed Rousseau watching Alex, and introduced them to each other as mother and daughter. ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 2")
Led by Rousseau with a rope tied to his bound hands, Ben was forced to accompany Jack's group to the radio tower. Once Rousseau's transmission was turned off and Naomi got her phone to work, Ben again pleaded with Jack not to attempt to contact Naomi's boat. Jack wouldn't listen, but Ben's wish was partially granted when Locke threw a knife into Naomi's back in an attempt to stop the communication. When Ben tried to convince Locke to kill Jack in order to prevent the phone from being used, Rousseau silenced him by elbowing him in the face. Jack made the call. ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 2")
Days 91–100 (Season 4)
Now bound to a tree, Ben watched as his daughter and Karl had a picnic. He tried to convince Rousseau to take Alex and get as far away from Jack's group as possible. When he referred to Alex as his daughter, Rousseau punched him again, citing that Alex was not his daughter. Ben said nothing as he watched Naomi crawl away. Later, he watched Kate pickpocket the satellite phone away from Jack, but again said nothing. Jack and Rousseau hauled Ben along with them into the jungle to find Naomi. When Jack discovered that he had followed the wrong trail and that Kate had taken the phone, Ben worked Jack into a rage by pointing out each of the mistakes he had made. He told Jack he said nothing because he "owed him one" for the beating he had received earlier. Jack and Rousseau turned back, dragging Ben behind them on their way to meet up with the other survivors. When they arrived at the cockpit, tensions escalated among the assembled survivors with regard to the intent of the freighter people and the group began to split into separate factions. While being dragged by Rousseau toward Locke's group, Ben took the opportunity to needle Jack one more time by asking his permission to go with Locke. Jack let him go, telling Locke, "He's all yours." ("The Beginning of the End")
Locke told his group they needed to visit a cabin before moving on to the barracks. When Hurley said he thought the cabin was in a different direction, both Ben and Locke were surprised, though Hurley covered himself by saying he thought they meant the plane's cabin. Ben tried to talk to Alex, but she ignored him and Karl told him off. He tried to manipulate Sawyer, saying that he wouldn't have a chance with Kate once they were rescued. Sawyer beat him and wanted to kill him, but was stopped by Locke. However, Locke changed his mind after Ben stole a gun and shot Charlotte, who had just arrived on the Island. Fortunately, she was wearing a bullet-proof jacket. Locke was about to shoot him, despite Alex's protests, when Ben offered him information. Locke asked what the Monster was, but Ben said he didn't know. He did reveal that he knew Charlotte's name and entire history, and had the same information on the other members of her team. He went on to say that they were on the Island in search of him. When asked how he knew this information, Ben said he had a spy working on the freighter. ("Confirmed Dead")
Ben refused to share the identity of his spy, knowing that this piece of information might well be the only thing keeping him alive. Having not found the cabin in its previous location, Locke's group continued to the barracks. ("The Economist")
At the barracks
Ben returned to the barracks as a prisoner, and Locke left him tied to a chair in the rec room, where he briefly confronted fellow captive Sayid (with Sayid noting that the day he trusted Ben would be the day he had sold his soul). ("The Economist")
He was later moved to the basement of his own home by Rousseau during the night. The next day, Locke made him breakfast and demanded he tell him everything about the freighter and the people on it. Ben remarked that Locke must be desperate, having to seek help from Ben after Jacob abandoned him, which made Locke upset. Later, Kate brought Miles to the basement, where he told Ben that he would say Ben was dead for $3.2 million. Miles told Ben he had one week to comply to his demand. ("Eggtown")
Some time later, Harper appeared to Juliet in the jungle, claiming Ben needed Juliet to go to the Tempest and stop Charlotte and Daniel from releasing the toxic gas. She also told her that Ben was exactly where he wanted to be, and refused to explain how Ben knew anything about the events elsewhere on the Island or how he was managing to issue commands from his captivity. Juliet hesitantly proceeded to the Tempest, but when she arrived, Charlotte and Daniel insisted they were trying to prevent Ben from releasing the gas, which would kill everyone on the Island. The gas ended up not being released, and it remains unclear who was the real cause of the crisis. ("The Other Woman")
Around the same time, Locke brought him a dinner with cooked rabbit. Ben asked Locke if the rabbit was numbered, to Locke's confusion. He then said that Locke was a leader, and that his people would begin to get restless if Locke did not develop a plan, which Ben always had. Locke asked Ben (to Ben's surprise) if that plan involved getting $3.2 million. Ben then made a deal with Locke. After showing a cassette tape of Charles Widmore beating an unknown Other, he stated that Widmore was in charge of the freighter, and that he wanted to exploit the Island. He then stated that he would tell Locke who the person on the boat was if Locke would simply give him a limited freedom. Locke agreed, and Ben presumably told Locke that his spy is Michael. Afterward, Ben was seen walking outside by Sawyer and Hurley. When questioned by them, he merely stated that he'd see them at dinner. ("The Other Woman")
Later, Locke organized a meeting with the entire group, during which Ben revealed that they must protect him because the freighter people's orders are to kill everyone else on the Island after they capture Ben. He also revealed to everyone that Michael is his spy on the boat, much to their shock and anger. After the meeting, Ben asked Alex, Karl, and Rousseau to stay behind and go to the Temple using a map he drew for them. Though at first reluctant, they eventually agreed after some persuasion by Ben. Once in the jungle however, Rousseau and Karl were shot and Alex saved herself by screaming to her unseen assailants, "I'm Ben's daughter!" ("Meet Kevin Johnson")
The next day, Locke and Sawyer told him of a mysterious phone call where a voice repeated the code "14J" over and over. While being held captive by Keamy, Alex, at the order of Keamy, disarmed the Sonar fenceusing a distress or emergency code that alerted the barracks of an intrusion. A now frightened Ben revealed that Widmore's people had crossed the Sonic Fence and must be right on their doorstep by now. He and Locke barricaded themselves with Hurley and Aaron in Ben's house, while Sawyer engaged the mercenaries in gunfire, trying to save Claire and the others. ("The Shape of Things to Come")
The door bell rang and Miles entered the house with a walkie for Ben to speak to Keamy. Ben revealed he knew many details of Keamy's past and said he knew exactly what kind of man Keamy was. Angered, Keamy called out for Alex and told Ben he was going to kill her. Ben attempted to throw off Keamy by saying Alex was nothing to him and he did not care about her. Despite his words, Keamy killed her anyway.
In a state of shock, Ben mumbled "they changed the rules" and ran into his secret room, locking Sawyer and Locke out. Inside, he opened another hidden door. It is unknown exactly what he did inside, but he appeared as though he summoned the smoke monster the same way he summoned it in Dead Is Dead. When he came back out, visibly dirtier than before, he told everyone that when he said so, they had to run out of the barracks. He looked out the window and saw the smoke attack Keamy and his team. Ben's people went outside where he told Locke he would catch up to them after he said goodbye to his daughter.
Later, Ben told everyone they were going to see Jacob and Sawyer decided he had heard enough from these "wackos". Sawyer left, attempting to take everyone with him, but Locke and Ben argued that they needed Hurley. Sawyer gave in and Ben told Locke and Hurley to follow him. ("The Shape of Things to Come")
After leaving the barracks again
That night, Locke woke up from a dream to find Ben staring at him. Ben stated that he used to have dreams. They then continued on. They came upon the mass grave, and Locke explained to Hurley about Ben's massacre of the DHARMA Initiative; however, Ben denied this and stated it wasn't his decision. Meanwhile, Locke began rummaging in the grave. Ben reacted with shock when Locke found the corpse of Horace Goodspeed. Horace's pocket contained a schematic of Jacob's cabin, as well as a map to it. Upon reaching the cabin, Locke entered alone, because Ben believed that his own 'time' had passed. While Locke was inside, Hurley and Ben awkwardly split an Apollo Bar. Suddenly, Locke exited the cabin, stating that Christian Shephard told him to move the island. ("Cabin Fever")
The next day, Ben, Locke and Hurley arrived at a pile of rocks. Ben dug up a box hidden under it. He took out a mirror and began communicating with someone on top of a very large mountain. The three then continued to the Orchid. When they arrived, Ben saw that the mercenaries had already arrived. He gave Locke detailed instructions on what to do once inside the Orchid. Locke asked how Ben expected him to get around the mercenaries, to which Ben replied, "How many times do I have to tell you, John? I always have a plan." Ben then walked out into the open, surrounded by the mercenaries. He stated his name to Keamy, who put his gun to his head before knocking him out. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 1")
Ben was taken to the helicopter by Keamy's men, but he was soon rescued by Kate, Sayid, and Richard. He then returned to the Orchid to help Locke find the secret elevator down into the real station. Before heading down with Locke, he told Jack that he and his companions were free to take the helicopter off the island if they wished.
Inside the station, Ben opened the "vault" that DHARMA used to experiment with time-manipulating properties and started filling it with metallic objects in order to short it out and destroy it, so that he could access the space underneath the station. Before he could do this, Keamy emerged from the elevator, still bleeding from the wounds he'd received from Sayid and Richard. Keamy told Ben and Locke about the dead man's trigger attached to his arm (designed to set off a massive bomb on the freighter if Keamy's heart stopped) and then proceeded to taunt Ben by describing Alex's death. Ben stabbed Keamy to death, not caring that in doing so he was causing the deaths of everyone on board the freighter. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 2")
After blasting open the back of the "vault," Ben changed into a DHARMA Initiative parka and prepared to head into the space underneath the station. He told Locke to leave the station and find Richard, claiming that whoever moved the Island would not be able to come back. He then climbed through a narrow rock tunnel, down a long ladder, which collapsed causing Ben to heavily gash open his arm, and into an ice-encrusted cave filled with what looked like ancient carvings. Inside the room was a large frozen wheel that seemed to be part of some sort of mechanism beyond the cave wall. Before turning the wheel, Ben looks upwards, and utters "I hope you're happy now, Jacob". Sobbing, Ben started turning the wheel, and he soon became enveloped in a bright light. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 3")
After moving the Island
2005–2007 (Seasons 4 and 5)
Thrown through time and space, Ben woke up lying supine on the sandy earth in the middle of the Sahara, wearing the DHARMA parka, his right arm bleeding, his teeth chattering, and with cold steam evaporating from his body. He was held at gunpoint by two Bedouins, but he quickly disposed of both of them. He traveled to Tunisia and asked for a room under the name Dean Moriarty, telling the clerk he was a preferred customer, indicating he'd been there before. He also asked what the current date was, which was 10 months from the time he left the island. Ben noticed Sayid making a statement about his wife's death on the television in the lobby.
Ben then traveled to Tikrit, Iraq, where he spied on Nadia's funeral, which was also being watched by Bakir, an agent of Widmore. After Sayid spotted and confronted him, Ben revealed evidence suggesting that Bakir had murdered Nadia in California. When Sayid asked how he escaped the Island, Ben lied and said he used Desmond's sailboat. Not long after this, Ben confronted Bakir in an alley. Soon after their conversation began, Sayid shot Bakir from behind.
Ben attempted to part with Sayid at this point, but Sayid insisted while Ben objected. Sayid offered Ben help in getting revenge against Widmore, saying "Who's next?" Ben said he'd be in touch, and while walking away, he smiled to himself about having recruited Sayid as an employee and hitman. ("The Shape of Things to Come")
Eventually, Ben went to Widmore's penthouse in London to confront him directly. Ben found Widmore in bed, haggard and with a half-empty bottle of scotch at his bedside. Widmore asked whether Ben was there to kill him, and Ben stated that he was unable to kill Charles (for some unstated reason that both of them apparently knew). Charles claimed that the island belonged to him—that it had always belonged to him—and that Ben had "stolen" it. Ben then told Charles that he planned to avenge Alex by killing Charles's daughter, Penny. Charles revealed that he had hidden Penny somewhere, and stated that the race was on to see whether he could find the Island before Ben could find Penny. ("The Shape of Things to Come")
From the Tikrit meeting on, Sayid continued to work for Ben as a hitman to eliminate a number of persons from a list, including Mr. Avellino and an "economist". While on assignment for Ben to kill the "economist", Sayid ended up killing Elsa in self-defense. After Sayid showed some remorse for killing Elsa, Ben suggested that the people Sayid was being sent to kill were not good people and that Sayid's "friends" would be in danger if these people were left alive. Ben then told Sayid that he had another name for him. When Sayid responded that "they" now knew he was looking for them, Ben simply responded, "Good." ("The Economist") Several assassinations later, Ben met Sayid in Moscow after the latter had eliminated Ivan, supposedly the last of Widmore's associates that posed a "threat" to the Oceanic Six. Ben congratulated Sayid on his good work and told him to go out and "live his life." ("He's Our You")
Due to his surveillance on all the members of the Oceanic Six, which he claimed was to keep them safe, Ben became aware that Locke had left the Island. He spotted him with Matthew Abaddon in New York, after Locke had met with Walt at his high school. Some time later, Ben tracked them down at Helen's gravesite in Los Angeles, and shot Abaddon several times, killing him. Locke, however, escaped the scene.
A short time after this encounter, Ben arrived at Locke's hotel room, walking in on his would-be suicide by hanging. He admitted to killing Abaddon but cited that Abaddon, as Widmore's employee, was extremely dangerous. He tried to persuade Locke that Widmore was using him to return to the Island. Despite Locke's admission that he was a failure, Ben convinced Locke not to go through with it, stating that Locke had no idea how important he was, and that he still had work to do. Ben said Locke had convinced Jack after all, because of a ticket he booked, and that he could convince the others too. Ben consoled a tearful Locke and suggested that there was still hope in getting the others to return. Locke thanked him for the help. Locke then told him that once they had gotten everyone, they should go to see Eloise Hawking. After hearing this name, Ben's demeanor instantly changed to a cold one. He admitted knowing Hawking and suddenly attacked and strangled Locke, killing him. He then set up the scene to look like Locke had actually committed suicide, cleaning the place of evidence and removing his fingerprints from the scene. He took Jin's wedding ring and, upon leaving, said: "I'll miss you, John. I really will." ("The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham")
The next day, Ben visited Sayid in Santo Domingo at a Build Our World relief project and told him about Locke's death, implying he was murdered by Widmore's associates seeking retribution for Sayid's assassinations. Ben urged Sayid to kill the man waiting outside the mental facility housing Hurley, but Sayid refused. ("He's Our You")
Some time later, when Jack broke into Hoffs/Drawler Funeral Parlor to view the body of Jeremy Bentham (aka John Locke), Ben was there as well. He asked Jack when he had last spoken to Locke and what Locke had said to him. He then told Jack that he could only return to the Island if everyone who had left returned together. He suggested that he could give Jack some "help" in getting Kate to talk to him again and that he had some ideas about how they might find the Island again. When Jack seemed about to leave, Ben told Jack that Locke, too, needed to be returned to the Island. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 3")
While moving Locke's body, Jack asked Ben how this all happened, and Ben replied "It happened because you left, Jack." Ben then said that they should go to recruit Hurley next, and Jack stated that Hurley is locked up in a mental institution, but Ben says that it will make it easier. However, when they looked at the news and saw that he had broken out, Ben seemed dismayed. ("Because You Left")
The two of them temporarily moved Locke's body to a motel, where Jack shaved his beard, and Ben flushed away his pills. Ben took a mysterious wrapped package from a hiding place in the air vent and placed it in his bag. Ben arranged to pick up Jack in six hours, and left the motel. He went to a butcher store to meet Jill, who confirmed that Gabriel and Jeffrey had checked in, which pleased Ben. He left Locke's body there under her protection.
Shortly after Jack phoned him to tell him Hurley's father had delivered Sayid to him. Ben easily put two and two together and realized Hurley was staying at his parents' house. He went to visit Hurley at his house and attempted to recruit him to return to the Island, but Hurley was reluctant after what Sayid told him: that whatever Ben tells him to do, do the opposite. Hurley ran outside, away from Ben, and was arrested.
Having failed to recruit Hurley, he went to a church and met Ms. Hawking there. She told him that he only had seventy hours to bring everyone. Despite Ben's panicked protests, she told him if he doesn't, "Then God help us all". ("The Lie")
Ben traveled to St. Sebastian Hospital where he met with Jack and Sayid. As Jack departed he told him, after meeting Kate, to meet up with him at Slip 23 at the Long Beach Marina. Ben ominously told Sayid there was no time for "dirty linen" and the two of them drove to a car park where they met Dan Norton. Norton told Ben that, because of a lack of evidence against him, Hurley would be released from jail the following morning. When Sayid asked about Norton, Ben told him that Dan was his lawyer.
Ben and Sayid arrived at the dock to meet Kate and Jack. Kate quickly and correctly deduced that it was Ben who was trying to take Aaron away from her; he coldly justified this by telling her that Aaron is not her son. ("The Little Prince")
Without warning, Sun, who had been following them carefully, emerged from her car and pointed a gun at Ben, claiming he was responsible for Jin's death. Ben denied this, claiming Jin was not dead and he could prove it if she came with him for a 30 minute drive. She reluctantly agreed; Ben took Jack and Sun to the church. On the way, Sun and Jack discuss their hatred for him and he angrily pulled over. He shouted at them, claiming he had been protecting them, and if they knew the extent of what he had done for them they would not stop thanking him.
They later arrived at the church, where Ben gave Jin's wedding ring to Sun and apologized he couldn't give it to her until now. Ben said that Locke gave it to him. When Jack pointed out that Ben had previously told him that Locke had not visited Ben, Ben replied that that was correct: He had gone to see Locke. Moving toward the church, the group met Desmond who asked Ben if they were also looking for Faraday's mother. Ben, seeming slightly stunned, silently entered the church along with Sun, Jack and Desmond. Ben saw Eloise Hawking, and told her he could only get 4 of them on short notice, to which Hawking replied "Let's get started". ("This Place Is Death")
Hawking lead the group down to the basement of the church and into the DHARMA station called the Lamp Post. Ben claimed to have never heard of it, but Hawking believed he could be lying. While at the Lamp Post Ben and the others learned the exact way to get back to the Island: on Ajira Airways Flight 316.
After Jack had a private talk with Hawking he found Ben sitting in a pew. Ben told Jack that Sun left and he would pick up Locke's body soon. Ben related the story of Thomas the Apostle to Jack, explaining how he could not be convinced of Jesus's resurrection until he had touched his wounds with his own hands. He ended stating, “We’re all convinced sooner or later, Jack.” He then left, telling Jack he had a loose end to tie up. ("316")
At the marina, Ben phoned Charles Widmore to let him know he was about to kill Widmore's daughter, Penelope. As Ben walked to the boat, he was spotted by Desmond. Ben shot Desmond, though not fatally, and kept walking. He explained to Penny the reason he needed to kill her. When baby Charlie walked out, Penny begged Ben not to hurt her son. Ben lowered his gun and Desmond tackled him from behind, heavily beating him and throwing him into the water. ("Dead Is Dead")
A drenched and bloodied Ben called Jack from a pay phone, asking him to pick up Locke's body at the butcher shop where he left it, because he had been "delayed". He became the last person to arrive on Ajira Flight 316, much to the dismay of Hurley. On the flight, Ben sat next to Jack, reading a copy of Ulysses but gave Jack privacy to read Locke's suicide note, not before promising Jack it wasn't his fault that Locke committed suicide. Not too long after, the plane was filled with bright light taking Jack, Kate, Hurley and Sayid with it, and the plane crashed on the Island. ("316")
Back on the Island
2007 (Season 5)
Immediately after the crash-landing of Flight 316 on Hydra Island, Ben informed Frank and Sun in the fuselage of the plane that the others were "gone." Ben, who had mostly stayed isolated from the other Ajira survivors, snuck off from the group. He quickly realized he was being followed by Sun, and told her that he was off to find an outrigger to get them back to the main Island, and invited Sun along with him. At this point Frank emerged from the jungle and told Sun not to trust Ben. Sun replied that she had to, and the three set off to find the outriggers. Upon arriving at the spot where the canoes were hidden, Sun knocked Ben unconscious with an oar. Frank then asked Sun why she would do that if she trusted him, and Sun replied, "I lied". Frank and Sun left Ben unconscious on the beach and proceeded to use the outrigger canoes to get back to the main Island. ("Namaste")
Later, Ben was brought to an infirmary inside the Hydra station. At an unknown time after the crash, one of the passengers of Flight 316, Caesar, brought a resurrected John Locke to see the injured survivors, who recognized Ben as the man who killed him. ("The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham") Not long after, Ben woke up to see Locke alive and well sitting at his bedside and was welcomed back to "the land of the living." ("Whatever Happened, Happened")
Ben told Locke that he had to travel to the Barracks to be "judged". Locke was skeptical, and insisted on accompanying him. Ben then traveled out to the beach, where he spoke to Caesar about Locke, confiding that he did not believe Locke was on the plane, and may be dangerous. Caesar told Ben that he "has his back," and showed him the shotgun he had taken from Ben's office. Later, Caesar confronted Locke, who was preparing the outrigger to set sail. When Caesar reached for the shotgun to stop Locke, Ben produced it from his own pack and shot Caesar in the chest.
Soon after, Ben and Locke left for the main Island. When they arrived at the Barracks, Ben saw a shadow in his old house, in what used to be Alex's room. Worried, he ran in to see who or what it was, and encountered Sun and Frank. Sun said that an old man named Christian told them to wait there for John Locke. Sun did not believe this was possible, since she knew him to be dead, but Ben showed her Locke, alive and well, out of the window. Sun presented Ben with the photo of the DHARMA recruits in 1977, and she expressed surprise that Ben did not know that her friends were in the DHARMA Initiative.
After this, Ben went downstairs to summon the Monster in order to be "judged". Locke observed that the Monster had not yet appeared, but said he knew where it was. They trekked through the jungle with Sun to the Temple, where Locke proposed they enter from underneath it. Before they went in, Ben told Sun to apologize to Desmond for him if she ever sees Desmond again.
While inside, Ben admitted to Locke that he was summoning the Monster in order to seek penance for Alex's death. Ben then fell through a weak spot of the floor, where he discovered a room with pillars covered in hieroglyphs and a large engraving in the center. Out of vents at the base of the engraving crept a column of black smoke that encircled him, and his torch was extinguished. Through this, Ben relived the capture and death of Alex, after which the smoke vanished and his torch was re-ignited. Suddenly, a manifestation of Alex appeared behind him, to which Ben apologized to for her death. 'She' initially appeared to accept his apology, but quickly pinned him against a pillar by his throat and told him aggressively to follow and obey Locke, warning him that she will hunt Ben down and kill him should he harm Locke. A frightened Ben agreed, and Alex disappeared. Afterward, he was met by Locke who extended a vine to help pull him out of the hole. Ben told Locke that the Monster let him live. ("Dead Is Dead")
Ben and Sun followed Locke to the Others' camp where they saw Richard. Ben told Sun that Richard was like an "advisor" and has had the job for "a very long time." Locke then asked Ben to join him and Richard on a journey. When Ben wondered if Locke didn't trust him around his former people, Locke informed him that he wasn't afraid of anything he could do anymore. They then went into the jungle. When they arrived at the Beechcraft, Ben witnessed Locke telling Richard that he must tend to the time-traveling Locke, and tell him to bring the others back to the Island. While Richard does this, Ben was astonished how Locke knew when to be here. Locke said that the Island told him and surprised Ben by saying he knew that Ben had never seen Jacob.
The three then returned to camp, where Locke made a speech to all the Others present that he was going to see Jacob, and he would like them all to come with him. The Others were excited by this, but Richard admitted his worry to Ben, that Locke would be a problem in the future. Ben responded by telling Richard "Why do you think I tried to kill him?" The next morning, Locke and the Others left to find Jacob. Ben then told Locke of Richard's thoughts, that seeing Jacob made him uncomfortable, but then reaffirmed his allegiance to Locke's quest: to reunite with his friends in 1977. Locke told Ben he's not interested in reuniting with his friends and revealed that his true intentions, much to Ben's shock, were to kill Jacob. ("Follow the Leader")
During the journey Ben explained to Sun that while John was 'the leader' of the Island, he still answered to Jacob, and that the title of leader is "incredibly temporary". He admitted too that he had never personally met Jacob. He had a conversation with Locke, who was curious why Ben hadn't told Richard about his plans to kill Jacob. Ben recounted to John that his "dead daughter" had told him to follow everything that John said. John seemed pleased at this revelation, that with Ben following his orders he would not have to convince him, and told Ben that it would in fact be him who was to kill Jacob. Ben later sat alone at the beach camp, when Locke approached him to ask him a question. Ben quipped sullenly that he was a Pisces (in fact a lie, he is a Sagittarius) and John asked him what had really occurred on the day when Ben first took Locke to the cabin. Ben solemnly admitted that he had in fact pretended, that he had talked to an empty chair, and was surprised when things started flying around the room. He admitted that he was genuinely embarrassed, that as leader, he had never actually met Jacob. He then ultimately declared to Locke that he was a liar; "That's what I do." Ben then asked Locke why he wanted him specifically to kill Jacob, and John replied that in spite of his loyal service to the Island he was given cancer, his daughter was killed, and eventually banished - and the question really should be, why wouldn't he want to kill Jacob? ("The Incident, Part 1")
After finally arriving at the remains of the statue of Taweret, Sun asked Ben what had happened to the rest of it, to which he replied it was like that since he arrived on the Island. Locke then told Ben to come with him to see Jacob, something which Richard protested furiously at, stating that only the leader could see Jacob. Locke ignored this and proceeded inside that statue with Ben. Inside the caverns under the statue, Locke asked Ben if he would be able to go through with killing Jacob, promising change once Jacob was gone. He offered Ben a knife, which Ben silently took.
The two of them entered Jacob's room, a fire burning brightly in the center. Ben examined a weaving on the wall, and from the shadows Jacob spoke his first words to Ben, asking if he liked the weavings. Locke ordered Ben to do what he had asked, but Jacob quickly added that regardless of what Locke had told him, he still had a choice as to what he did, offering him the chance to leave. Ben, tearful, mockingly rejoiced that finally Jacob had decided to stop ignoring him.
As Jacob listened, Ben recounted that for 35 years he had lived on the Island, during which he had heard Jacob's name repeated over and over, had been brought his instruction, had been given slips of paper and lists, and all throughout he had never questioned any of it, that he "did as [he] was told." When Ben had dared to ask to see Jacob himself, he was always told he had to wait, to be patient, whereas when Locke asked, he was brought directly. Ben, moving in closer, emotionally demanded of Jacob "What was it that was so wrong with me? What about me?". Jacob paused and sardonically asked "What about you?". Ben nodded, as if he finally understood, then lunged at Jacob, stabbing him in the chest repeatedly. At this point, Jacob touched Ben. Jacob fell to the ground as Ben stood in shock, soaked in his blood. Ben watched as Locke pushed Jacob's body into the fire and it caught aflame. ("The Incident, Part 2")
2007 (Season 6)
After Ben murdered Jacob, the Man in Black sent him to fetch Richard, who responded by dragging him to the spot where the real John Locke lay dead. Bram forced him back into the statue soon after, where the Man in Black revealed himself as the smoke monster. After attacking Bram's group, the man left with an unconscious Richard, leaving Ben with Frank, Sun and Ilana. The group took Locke's body to the survivors' graveyard, and Ben spoke at an improvised funeral, apologizing for murdering his rival. ("LA X, Part 1") ("LA X, Part 2") ("The Substitute")
The group arrived at the Temple during the smoke monster's attack. Ben left to find Sayid and discovered that he had murdered Dogen and Lennon. Ben fled and caught up with the rest of his group and explained what he'd seen. Ilana, now suspicious, asked Miles to read Jacob's last thoughts and learned that Ben had killed him. The group traveled to the beach at Ben's suggestion, where Ilana shackled Ben and held him at gunpoint, demanding that he dig his own grave. Ben vainly sought help from Miles, but someone else arrived with assistance: the Man in Black. He released Ben, pointed him toward and stashed gun and suggested he join the Man. Ben reached the gun and turned it on Ilana but took the opportunity to explain why he'd killed Jacob. Ilana forgave him and invited him to stay with her. Ben accepted, and he tried to help the others at the camp. Jack, Hugo and Richard arrived, and Ben stood away during the reunion, looking out of place. ("Sundown") ("Dr. Linus")
Ben found Sun knocked out in the jungle the next day, and he had to argue to Ilana that he wasn't the culprit. Ilana died soon after, as as the group traveled to the Black Rock, Ben mused on how long any of them would live once the Island had finished with them. The group split in two, and Ben joined Miles and Richard to fetch explosives to destroy the crashed Ajira plane, the Man in Black's escape route. They took days to reach the Barracks. Once they did, they passed over Alex's grave, and Ben thanked Richard for burying her. They retrieved the explosives, then discovered that Charles Widmore and a friend were in Ben's house. Ben sent them into his secret room for safety and walked out to meet the Man in Black, who offered Ben the island in return for his help. Ben gladly led him to Widmore, and when Widmore began divulging secrets for fear of Penny's life, Ben shot him. Charles, said Ben, would not get to save his daughter. ("The Package") ("Everybody Loves Hugo") ("What They Died For")
Ben followed the Man in Black, offering to kill others for him. But he secretly kept a walkie talkie in his pocket, planning to stay in touch with Miles and Richard. The pair arrived at the well where the Man had kept Desmond, and the Man revealed he planned to use Desmond to destroy the Island. Sawyer arrived to rescue Desmond and knocked Ben to the ground, and a conversation with the Man in Black revealed the plan to be literal - the Man in Black wanted to sink the Island. The group met Sawyer, Jack, Kate and Hurley, and they walked together toward the Heart of the Island. Ben stayed some distance away with most of the group, and when the Island began to shake, a tree started falling down toward Hurley. Ben pushed Hurley out of the way and the tree pinned him down instead. The others managed to free him after some time, and Ben reached the cliff just in time to see Jack kick the Man in Black off. Sawyer and Kate decided to head for the Ajira plane, but Ben said he'd "go down with" the Island if necessary. He walked with Jack back to the Heart, where he witnessed Hurley's induction as Protector. He and Hurley lowered Jack into the Heart and raised Desmond in his place. Hurley, overwhelmed with his new role, asked Ben to advise him. Ben accepted the position.("What They Died For") ("The End")
As Hurley's Advisor
Under Hurley's orders, Ben left the Island at some point to "tie up a few loose ends." One of his destinations was the DHARMA Logistics Warehouse in Guam, where two DHARMA Initiative members, Hector and Glen, continued to load and send out periodic resupply drops to the Island. Ben told them of the previous disbandment of the DHARMA Initiative and informed them that they would no longer be needed for the drops, giving them both severance pay. Agreeing to answer one question from each of them, Ben told them of the automated nature of the supply drop system, the fact that the Island was constantly moving, and showed them the Hydra Orientation film before departing.
At a later date, Ben traveled to the Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute to visit Walt, who was committed their under the name of Keith Johnson. Apologizing to Walt for previously having him kidnapped, Ben told him that he was special, and that he had "work to do," including helping Michael. Ben led Walt back to the parked DHARMA van, where Hurley was waiting for both of them. The three then departed for their journey back to the Island. ("The New Man in Charge")
In the flash sideways world, both Ben and Roger lived on the Island briefly because Roger still worked for the DHARMA Initiative. At some point they left the Island, but it is not clear when. Ben later received a doctorate in modern European history and came to be a high school European history teacher at Washington Tustin High School in California.
History Club canceled
While in the teacher's lounge, Linus discovered that someone had left used coffee grounds in the coffee pot, and angrily began lecturing the surrounding teachers. He soon noticed John Locke, a wheelchair-bound substitute teacher, and introduced himself. ("The Substitute") Some time later, the school's principal, Donald Reynolds, forced Ben to oversee detention after school. Ben objected, stating that he needed to meet with the school's History Club during that same time period, but Reynolds was dismissive about the club. Back in the teacher's lounge, Ben and another teacher, Dr. Leslie Arzt, complained to each other about Reynolds. Locke overheard them and suggested that Ben be the principal since he seemed to actually care about students. Ben was intrigued by the suggestion.
At home caring for his elderly father that night, Ben complained to him about feeling like a "loser" at his job. Roger remarked that he had hoped for so much more for Ben and wondered what would have happened had they stayed with the DHARMA Initiative. Alex Rousseau, one of Ben's best students, showed up at his door, wondering why Ben didn't show up to the History Club meeting. She wanted help studying for her AP exam, and Ben agreed to meet with her before school the next morning.
The next morning, Alex told Ben a story about overhearing Reynolds and the school nurse having sex in an office. Seeing an opportunity, Ben asked Arzt to hack into the nurse's email account to look for evidence of the affair. Some time later, Ben confronted Reynolds with the evidence and threatened to expose him unless he resigned and nominated Ben as his successor. Reynolds responded by showing Ben an email from Alex in which she asked Reynolds for a letter of recommendation. Reynolds threatened to deny the letter if Ben went through with his plan. Ben ultimately relented, choosing Alex's future over his own. He did, however, get Reynolds to let him go back to working with the History Club. ("Dr. Linus")
Running into Desmond
At the end of a school day, Ben became suspicious of Desmond Hume, who was watching the people exiting the school. Although the man said that he was planning to enroll his son there, Ben remained wary. Seconds later, Desmond suddenly sped up his car and rammed it into John Locke before speeding away before anyone could identify him. Ben rushed to the side of the injured Locke and tried to keep him conscious as others went to call for help. ("Everybody Loves Hugo")
Ben accompanied Locke in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Having only met Locke recently, he didn't know who was next in Locke's kin and had forgotten his first name. Locke mumbled that his name is John and he was going to marry Helen Norwood. Ben assured him that he was still going to marry her. ("The Last Recruit")
After Locke's recovery, Ben saw Desmond at the school again, preparing to run Locke down again. Ben ran in front of the car, as Desmond started it and refused to let him hurt Locke again and shouted for someone to call the police. Desmond insisted that he was not trying to hurt Locke, but help him let go. Ben asked who he is and Desmond asked "Do you want to know who I am?" and proceeded to beat Ben violently. As he was being punched, Ben had a flash of remebrance of Desmond beating him at the marina in LA. Desmond then left. ("What They Died For")
At the infirmary, Kim Kondracki treated his injuries and he was visited by Locke. Ben told Locke what happened and Locke prepared to call the police, but then Ben told him what Desmond said about letting go and that he strangely believed him. Locke hung up the phone, after hearing this. ("What They Died For")
Deciding to stay
Alex met Ben in the car park after school, surprised that anyone would want to hurt "the nicest guy ever". She didn't want him to drive home, while wearing a sling, so she insisted that her mother, Danielle, give him a lift. Danielle introduced herself and insisted that he join them for dinner. At the Rousseau's house, Danielle tells Ben that Alex's father died when she was two and Ben has been the closest thing Alex has had to a father. ("What They Died For")
Later on, under unknown circumstances, Ben remembered his past life.
Ben, despite now becoming fully aware of his previous life, decided not to move on, stating, "I have some things I still need to work out." Sitting outside the church as everyone continued to gather there, he apologized to John Locke for killing him. Ben admitted that he was not special, and was selfish and jealous because Locke was. Locke told him sincerely that he forgave him. Ben was visibly moved; he told Locke that his forgiveness meant to him more than he possibly could know. As Locke rolled away, Ben insisted that he didn't need the wheelchair anymore. Locke then stood up triumphantly, told Ben goodbye, and walked into the church.
Later, Hugo Reyes came outside, saw Ben and invited him in. Ben declined, saying "I'll stay here for a while" hinting that he wanted to stay and spend more time with Alex. Hugo then commemorated Ben on his job as his Number Two, to which Ben replied, "And you were a great Number One, Hugo." This interaction hints at the two having a long relationship together on the Island as its leaders; a much more harmonious relationship than that of Jacob and the Man in Black. "I'll see ya," Hugo tells Ben, as he enters the church to move on. Ben remained in this place for an undisclosed amount of time. ("The End")
Benjamin Linus has taken on various names to cover up his identity.
- Henry Gale – A reference to Dorothy Gale's uncle Henry from The Wizard of Oz, but also the name of a balloonist who crashed on the Island. The school principal in the Stephen King novel "Carrie" (the subject of the Others' book club meeting on Sept. 22, 2004) was named Henry Grayle.
- Dean Moriarty – The name of a free-wheeling character in Jack Kerouac's novel On the Road, reportedly based on Neal Cassady. ("The Economist") Alternatively, "Moriarty" evokes Professor Moriarty, Sherlock Holmes' nemesis and widely considered fiction's first "supervillain," creating the archetype of the brilliant criminal mastermind.
- Ben has a number of fake IDs and passports in his secret room.
- Ben used the name "Walt" to contact Michael on the freighter.
- Ben was the sixth character to ever have a flash-forward and the first who was not onboard Oceanic Flight 815 to get one.
- Ben was the twenty-fourth character to ever have a flashback.
- Ben is one of 22 main characters to have their names appear in a soundtrack title.
- Ben's episode count is 59 as of "The End", making him the character with the most appearances who was not on Flight 815.
- Ben appeared in eight episodes as a guest star before being promoted to main cast.
- One of his appearances was made solely by his flash sideways counterpart. ("The Last Recruit")
- Ben is one of the seven characters to have a flashback, a flash-forward and a flash sideways episode centered around them. The other six are Hurley, Sayid, Kate, Sawyer, Sun and Jack.
- Ben is one of only two characters to be members of four out of the five major factions on the Island, the DHARMA Initiative, the survivors, the Ajira survivors, the Others and the Kahana crew. Ben wasn't part of the Kahana crew, though was part of the four others. Miles is the other character to be a part of four major Island factions.
- Ben has never met Boone, Shannon, Pierre, Nikki, Paulo, Daniel and Christian. However, he has met the rest of the main characters.
- It is highly likely that Ben saw a dying Libby after Michael had released him from the Hatch.
- Ben met Jin when he was a young child. ("Whatever Happened, Happened")
- It's highly likely that he has met Pierre Chang at the DHARMA Initiative, since he spent much time there.
- Paulo saw him from the bathroom of the Pearl, but they never formally met.
- Ben has been seen to visit six of the ten known DHARMA Initiative stations: the Swan, the Pearl, the Hydra, the Flame, the Orchid and the Lamp Post. However as he was leader of the island for a significant amount of time and had connections with all the other stations it can be strongly assumed he has visited at least most of the others if not them all.
- When Ben asks Jack to pick up Locke's body, he tells him it's at the corner of Grant and Hayes. Named after president's Ulysses S. Grant and Rutherford B. Hayes, "Ulysses" is the novel Ben read aboard Ajira 316, and Rutherford is the surname of 815 survivor Shannon Rutherford.
- Ben commonly uses a 16" telescopic baton as a weapon.
- In a way, Ben is the cause of both his parents' deaths.
- He says that he hates needles, although he may have said this as part of conning Sawyer. ("Every Man for Himself")
- Juliet told Ben about his tumor the day before the crash. ("One of Us") However, 72 days after the crash, Ben told Jack, "Two days after I found out I had a fatal tumor on my spine, a spinal surgeon fell out of the sky." ("The Cost of Living")
- Ben's tumor was on his L4 vertebra.
- On Ben's passport, part of the serial number reads "HNSO", which is similar to Hanso.
- When given a copy of The Brothers Karamazov by Locke, Ben asked, "You don't have any Stephen King?" ("Maternity Leave") Three months earlier, Ben had displayed a dislike of one of King's novels, Carrie, to Juliet. ("One of Us")
- The story of The Brothers Karamazov revolves around four brothers who murder their father.
- In "Through the Looking Glass", Ben's eyes change from green when he is talking to Richard Alpert, to a greyish-blue when he is talking to Jack.
- His use of the alias "Henry" in Season 2 earned him the nickname "Benry" among some fans.
- The vehicles that were used in the opening scene of "The Man Behind the Curtain" could inform the year of Ben's birth:
- An anonymous source associated with the production claims that he was ordered to get cars 1963 or older for the Portland scene.
- The green car appears to be a Dodge Dart two-door Hardtop '65 (the rear lens, front hood, and grille are different from '63 and '64 models)
- In the Season 3 DVD commentary for "The Man Behind the Curtain", it is explained that Ben, as leader, and Richard Alpert, as someone who nominates the leader, keep each other in "check" by having the power to pick each other's replacement on the Island.
- Also in the commentary, the producers describe the battle between Ben and Locke as being a multi-chapter showdown for the title of "Master of the Island".
- At the barracks, Ben's study prominently features preserved moths in framed displays. At least one of these was taken with him to the ruins.
- Both Ben and Locke were born prematurely and named by their mothers, who had the same name, Emily.
- The piece of music Ben is playing in "The Shape of Things to Come" is "Prelude in C-Sharp minor" by Sergei Rachmaninoff.
- Ben shows many signs of being a sociopath: excessive lying, manipulation, kills with no guilt or mercy, has few emotional attachments to anyone, claims Juliet is his "property."
- Ben has been assaulted more than any other character in the show. He has a tendency to be brutally beaten by someone for various reasons, such as the torture received from Sayid in "One of Them', the passionate pummeling unleashed by Jack in ", Through the Looking Glass, Part 2, the angry assault from Sawyer in "Confirmed Dead" , and the beating dished out by Desmond in "Dead Is Dead".
- Ben has stabbed someone to death in a finale twice. (Martin Keamy and Jacob)
- Ben appears to believe in God. He took the fact that a spinal surgeon felt out of the sky, shortly after he found out he had a fatal tumor on his spine, as proof that God exists.
- Though he could, as always, be lying.
- Ben is a compulsive liar, but any time he gives "his word", he holds to it, no matter what.
- Ben declares that if the Island is going to sink, he will go down with it. This is a traditional attribute of a sea captain, to go down with his ship, and refers to the role in which Ben sees himself as leader of the Island.
- Also Ben has no family or friends that we know back in the real world. The island is all he has and he sees no point in returning to the real world. ("The End")
- Ben is one of nine male main characters alive at the end of the series, not counting the flash sideways.
- In the Bible, Benjamin is the youngest son of Jacob and Rachel.
- With her dying breath Rachel called him, Ben-Oni (which means "son of my trouble") but Jacob called him Benjamin. 
- In Roman Catholocism, St. Linus was the second pope and a direct descendent of St. Peter.
- The feast day of (Pope) Saint Linus (commemorating his death) is September 23.
- In Hebrew, Ben translates as "Son" or "Son of". Also, the first appearance of the name LINUS is in reference to the "son of Apollo, the Sun God." Apollo accidentally killed this son in a contest. Therefore, his name could be translated as "The Son of the son of the Sun God."
- In classical Greek mythology, Linus was a god-gifted musician who taught Heracles how to play the lyre. The original Linus was a lyre expert. Ben Linus is an expert liar.
- His pseudonym and supposed way of coming to the Island refers to the children's book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum. "Henry Gale" is Dorothy Gale's Uncle Henry in the popular 1939 film adaptation of the book (the original books never mention Henry's surname), while the hot air balloon refers to the Wizard himself, who landed on Oz (and subsequently left it) in a hot air balloon. This analogy could be taken one step further by assuming that "Henry", like the Wizard, was the "man behind the curtain", i.e. the real leader of the Others, while previously we were led to believe that Tom, or to a greater degree Alvar Hanso, was in charge. Interestingly enough, Ben Linus was also the keeper of the submarine, the only way off the Island. In Ozma of Oz, the third book in Baum's Oz series, Uncle Henry is ordered by his doctor to take a vacation to Australia. He and his niece Dorothy depart on a steamship and, during a storm, Dorothy is blown overboard with one of her uncle's hens. She and the hen are washed ashore to a place that Dorothy guesses is some sort of "fairy country", as Oz has no seashores.
- In Treasure Island, by Robert L. Stevenson, Ben Gunn is a half-crazed man. Ben had once served in Flint’s crew but was marooned alone on the island three years earlier.
- See the theories section for more possible (unconfirmed) name references.
- Sterling Beaumon played the role of Young Ben in "The Man Behind the Curtain", "Namaste", "He's Our You", "Whatever Happened, Happened" and "Dead Is Dead".
- For fan theories about these unanswered questions, see: Benjamin Linus/Theories
- Why was Ben on his own near the Swan when he was captured by Rousseau?
- What was his role in the planning of The Purge?
- What is the nature of the Rules regarding his feud with Charles Widmore?
- How did Widmore having Keamy murder Alex "change the rules"?
- How did the rules prevent Ben from killing Widmore in London?
- What changed that allowed Ben to kill Widmore on the island?
- How did Ben know of the existence/usage of the frozen wheel?
- How long did Ben and Hurley live for once Hurley became the Island's Protector?
- How did Ben know that Sawyer, Juliet, Miles, Hurley, Kate, Daniel, Jin, and Sayid were trapped in 1977?