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Ben's Point Is That He Has No Point

posted by Textbook on - last edited - Viewed by 668 users

As others have observed, Ben is a puzzling character. He's the classic underdog, a well-meaning but incompetent loser who's used to being overlooked and under-rated. I, like a lot of players, disliked him and wished quite often that he had died where Mark did and found him useless but I kept him alive in episode 4 because I knew that in episode 5 he would do something awesome to redeem himself and reward you for sticking with him.

Yet of course, he not only dies anyway, but dies in a trivial way and takes Kenny, who was relatively useful, with him. His moment never comes.

Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but is Ben's role to teach us a lesson about the world of The Walking Dead, that people can live short and painful lives without hokey Hollywood moments? Is the point of Ben's life that in Kirkman's world, characters don't necessarily have a point or grand destiny, they just live and die however the dice land?

30 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • @harrisonpink said: The way I always interpret Ben (speaking solely for myself) is that not everyone needs to have a cut and dry "role" to play. Ben's just a person. Real people don't always fit into roles, or serve a specific function. Maybe that's why I like him so much. He's just a boy, but everyone expects him to be a man.

    I get it, but why making him do such stupids things? I understand about the deal with the bandits, but what about the hatchet in Crawford?

  • Removing that hatchet was the dumbest thing I've seen anybody do. Obviously the first order of business was securing the premises, why in the hell would you remove something that keeps the front doors from opening without asking anybody?

  • Previously I called Vernon's betrayal the biggest bum note in the game, but I've come to realise that isn't true - it's Ben and the hatchet.

    Two things:

    i) He's in a hostile environment which has been strategically blocked off to contain zombies. Nobody would casually open doorways that have been deliberately sealed by others.

    ii) Even worse, the zombie crowd that pursued Kenny and Brie, which stays there after they've gone, magically disappears while Ben makes his move.

    It really was quite a transparent attempt at forcing a zombie chase and thus some cheap drama.

  • The character of Ben is a funny one, being that he's one of the few that really mess things up. Like Carl in the TV Series. But, even though he messes up, he's one of the few people left that have still kept their humanity together. And I love him for that.

  • @HiggsBoson2142 said: The character of Ben is a funny one, being that he's one of the few that really mess things up. Like Carl in the TV Series. But, even though he messes up, he's one of the few people left that have still kept their humanity together. And I love him for that.

    +1.

  • @Kaserkin said: I get it, but why making him do such stupids things? I understand about the deal with the bandits, but what about the hatchet in Crawford?

    Because him being a complete average joe that doesn't do anything extraordinary and at the same time doesn't make any mistakes is completely boring. There would actually be no point to his character, and no point focusing on him, let alone bringing him into the story at all. The only way to show his humanity is to show him making the mistakes of an idiot.

  • @JulianAR said: Because him being a complete average joe that doesn't do anything extraordinary and at the same time doesn't make any mistakes is completely boring. There would actually be no point to his character, and no point focusing on him, let alone bringing him into the story at all. The only way to show his humanity is to show him making the mistakes of an idiot.

    The deal with the bandits and leaving Clem in the streets were realistic mistakes, but the hatchet was far fetched.

  • @Zarron said: Unfortunately, by that point, everyone is back together (Kenny cannot not be in your party at that point, only Ben is a variable.)


    So you're saying that if you tell Kenny not to come with you, he comes anyway?

  • That's right. This is why people are complaining about the "choices" being illusory. The game is actually on rails.

  • @hplikelike said: So you're saying that if you tell Kenny not to come with you, he comes anyway?

    You go to the morgue to find Vernon and his group with the people following you at the end of episode 4; then you get back to the mansion and rejoin the group (or just get to there, if everyone came with you)

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