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TV Snapshot: 'Lost' in the undertow of grace

In the Dr. Linus episode of Lost, Illana has chained Ben to a tree and forced him to dig his own grave because he killed Jacob—who was like a father to her. After the Smoke Monster (who now looks like Locke) sets him free, she chases him into the jungle, where Ben finds the gun Fake Locke told him would be there. He grabs it, turns around and points it at her. She puts her gun down, raises her hands up, then after a pause, drops them.

Illana: What are you waiting for?

Ben pauses, anguish written all over his face.

Ben: I want to explain.

Illana (exasperated): Explain what?

Ben: I want to explain that I know what you’re feeling.

Illana: No, you have no idea what I’m feeling.

Ben: I watched my daughter Alex die in front of me. And it was my fault. I had a chance to save her. But I chose the island—

He pauses, the pain of the memory on his face—

Ben: —over her. All in the name of “Jacob.” I sacrificed everything for him.

Ben lowers his gun.

Ben: And he didn’t even care.

Illana looks at him, and Ben looks away, remembering.

Ben: I stabbed him. I was so—angry…confused…I was terrified that I was about to lose the only thing that ever mattered to me—my power. But the thing that really mattered was already gone. I’m sorry that I killed Jacob—I am. I do not expect you to forgive me because I can never forgive myself.

Illana: Then what do you want?

Ben: Just let me leave.

Illana: Where will you go?

Ben (with tears in his eyes): To Locke.

Illana: Why?

Ben (voice catching): Because he’s the only that’ll have me.

Illana looks away then looks right back at Ben.

Illana: I’ll have you.

She picks up her gun and walks back the way they came. Ben stands there, stunned, starring after her. Then he slowly takes a step, then another, following her.

Ben shuffled after her, as if sucked in by the undertow of her grace.

--Doc Jensen, Entertainment Weekly

One of the best scenes--if not the very best ever--in Lost. And an amazing image of the power of forgiveness and grace.