Ben Linus (Michael Emerson) has been on the island since he was eight years old when he moved there with his father, Roger Linus (John Gries), an alcoholic, who went there to work for the DHARMA Initiative. He never knew his mother as she had died giving birth to him. Ben was educated on the island and after meeting Richard Alpert (Nestor Carbonell) he began showing interest in a group of people known as the "Hostiles."
When Ben was 12 he tried to join the Hostiles but was shot by a time traveler named Sayid Jarrah (Naveen Andrews), who had come there to kill him. Ben had to be taken to the temple to be healed. This caused him to lose his memory. Ben would later work for the initiative while being aligned with Charles Widmore (Alan Dale) and the Hostiles. After the Purge when Ben kills his abusive father and the destruction of the initiative comes to fruition, Ben would overthrow the leadership of Charles Widmore and become the new leader of the Others. Although most people on the island never experience illness, Ben develops a tumor on his spine and is worried about the implications of it.
When Oceanic Flight 815 crashed on the island, Ben was leading the Others. After a few encounters with the survivors Ben is captured and kept prisoner. Ben tells them he is Henry Gale and made up a false tale for the survivors. Michael Dawson (Harold Perrineau), who makes a deal with the Others, helps Ben escape and while Jack Shephard (Matthew Fox), Sawyer Ford (Josh Holloway) and Kate Austen (Evangeline Lilly) are prisoners of the Others, Ben is able to persuade Jack to remove the tumor from his back.
Ben tries unsuccessfully to stop the survivors from contacting a freighter. He knows there are mercenaries on the freighter who were sent there by Charles Widmore to kill him. Ben sends all of the Others to the Temple for safety but Ben himself is captured by John Locke (Terry O'Quinn) and Jack successfully contacts the ship. Mercenaries come on the island, attack the barracks, and kill Ben's adopted daughter Alex Rousseau (Tania Raymonde) while Ben is forced to watch. Ben and Locke go to Jacob's (Mark Pellegrino) cabin and are told that Ben must go to the Orchid Station and move the island. Ben has to give up his leadership over the Others and leaves John Locke as his replacement.
Time traveling, Ben ends up 10 months into the future in the Sahara Desert and finds that some of the survivors have also gotten off the island. When Ben finds John Locke, he kills him, and uses his body to go back. When he gets there, he has to face the monster's judgment for the death of Alex. The Man in Black (Titus Welliver, Terry O'Quinn, Ryan Bradford), posing as the dead John Locke, uses Ben to kill Jacob. Afterwards, Ben joins Ilana Verdansky's (Zuleikha Robinson) group and they move to the temple. Miles Straume (Ken Leung), examines Jacob's ashes and declares that it was Ben who killed him. Ilana, upset, forces Ben to dig his own grave. Ben tries to reason with Ilana because he was being manipulated by the Man in Black. Ilana accepts Ben's remorse and he is allowed into the group.
Ben is an integral character on the series and provides a common thread between the groups on the island. Often unsure but always dedicated to the life he has there, Ben makes many sacrifices to protect the Others, and the survivors.
"I'm telling you, making that call is the beginning of the end."
"I remember that plane breaking in half like it was yesterday."