I’ve been fooled by teaser trailers before, people, but the one for the upcoming episode “Dead is Dead,” has me more excited than Hurley upon finding the food pantry inside the Swan Station. This, "Lost" fans, is one sexy promo.

Now, if you don’t want to see one second of this episode, by all means, skip the promo itself. But it’s sparked ten questions I think should be on everyone’s mind before Darlton unleashes this episode on our unprepared booties. These are not leading questions based upon prior knowledge of events to come. But they are, I think, appropriate to bring to the forefront at this particular juncture. So consider these questions your preview for the Ben-centric episode, “Dead is Dead.”

Whew. Who needs a cigarette?

Onto the ten questions…

Do the “rules” that govern the relationship between Linus and Widmore bear any relation to the “rules” espoused by both Pierre Chang and Daniel Faraday?

In other words, Ben seemed fairly certain that Keamy would NOT shoot Alex, and when Keamy did, it rocked Ben to his core in a way we simply haven’t seen before. Did he think it wouldn’t happen to due the “whatever happened, happened” rule, or a gentleman’s agreement not even Widmore would violate?

If it’s indeed a gentleman’s agreement, who brokered the deal between them?

And, as a corollary, why wasn’t Eloise Hawking involved in said agreement? Seems like she used to be up there in the Others’ hierarchy alongside Charles. But to date, this is the Linus/Widmore War. At best, Hawking is an extremely interested and enigmatic third party.

How did Ben summon the smoke monster in light of Widmore breaking the rules?

I think it’s a fair assumption that the hieroglyphic door inside Ben’s bungalow led to the temple in some fashion. But the mechanism/ritual by which Ben managed to sic smokey on Keamy’s Krew is still unclear.

Speaking of the Temple, why did Ben once refer to it as “the last safe place on the Island?”

Seems really, really unsafe to me. You get dragged in as one thing, and turn into something else once inside. According to Richard, it’s a place where Ben’s going to lose his innocence, as well as key memories of his childhood. Hardly Club Med.

If Ben loses his memories, how does he remember Annie?

Previously, we’ve seen Ben in 2004 holding two wooden dolls constructed by his childhood friend Annie. Let’s put aside alternate timelines for the moment and ask this: does this mean that Ben’s memory loss is acutely localized to getting shot, or does the “pure” memory of her manage to elude the Temple’s brain drain? Or does he simply hold onto the dolls from an intuitive sense they hold some key to his past?

Does the Temple hold the key to understanding the psychology of Cabin Christian/Cabin Claire?

Putting aside my theory that Cabin Christian works for the Army of the Dark, I think it’s fairly irrefutable there are two separate entities running around looking like Jack Shephard’s father. One’s in a blue suit and is largely silent; one’s in brown clothing and is quite the chatty Cathy. Exactly why Christian’s body was not in his coffin has still to be explained. Speaking of bodies in coffins…

Why aren’t we making a bigger deal of Locke coming back to life?

Because, like, this seems pretty super huge. He appears to have come back to life in a way that is unique, and yet we as an audience have largely treated this with a response akin to, “Well, of course he did. They wouldn’t kill Locke.” But they DID kill him. Well, to be precise, Ben killed him. And seemed pretty shocked to see him, smiling, in the Hydra Station a few weeks later. Speaking of that murder…

Why did Eloise Hawking’s name prompt Ben to kill Locke?

If it seems like a season ago that “The Life and Times of Jeremy Bentham” happened, you’re not alone. Not only has a ridiculous amount of shocking plot twists happened since, but Terry O’Quinn has barely been onscreen in the interim. But all signs point to her name as what caused Ben to casually and efficiently strangle Locke. But that’s not the only time he had blood on his hands.

What the hell happened at the marina?

The question that has haunted “Lost” fans since “316.” What happened when Ben confronted some combination of Desmond, Penelope, and Little Charlie? Who, if any, are no longer among the living? Why was Ben injured but alive? This leads to the following, final question…

When Hawking told Desmond the Island wasn’t done with him, was she speaking only of the impending marina incident, or of his literal return there?

For those who subscribe to an alternate timeline created in the aftermath of Ben turning the donkey wheel, Desmond’s insertion into the Island’s past is your best shot. He’s the ultimate “rule” breaker, standing outside the laws of time, physics, and causality. If anyone can smack destiny upside the head, it’s him.

So, there you have it, ten burning questions for your “Lost” brain before what should prove to be a brain-bending hour of television. What questions have been rattling around your head? Leave them below!

Ryan also posts every 108 minutes over at Boob Tube Dude. He invites you to join the hundreds already in Zap2It's Guide to Lost Facebook group. He also encourages you to subscribe to the Zap2It's Guide to Lost Twitter feed.

Posted by:Ryan McGee