The character of Sayid has gone down quite a dark path since we met him on the beach. Even though he was a torturer in the Gulf War for the Iraqis and he had done things that he regretted in that job, Sayid Jarrah felt like a good man.
After “He’s Our You,” that case is a much more difficult one to make.
Sayid believed that he figured out what the purpose was for him to return to the Island. It initially seemed like fate, because, to Sayid, he was grabbed by a bounty hunter who was returning him to Guam to face justice for the murder the man on the golf course at the beginning of the “Economist.” That was why he was on the same flight as Kate, Hurley, Jack and Sun. And Ben.
You could see Sayid knew he was screwed. He tried to get Ilana to change flights, but she refused. Then, when he wound up in a Dharma jail cell with a 12-year old Benjamin Linus bringing him sandwiches, Sayid knew what date was telling him.
He had to kill Ben.
The old time travel problem of “would you kill baby Hitler” falls into play here. Sayid sees Ben as one of the most evil men he has met, even going as far as to lay genocide at his feet. Sayid has to believe that if he killed Ben before the kid has a chance to become the mass murderer that he does become, that the world will be a better place.
For a minute, I thought that Sayid was going to change his tune. When he saw young Ben getting manhandled by Ben’s father Roger, Sayid stood as if he wanted to intervene on behalf of the boy. Maybe he could take the boy under his wing and change his attitude in that manner.
No. Not this Sayid, who has convinced himself, mainly thanks to older Ben’s manipulations, that he is a bad man, and who was a born killer. So, once free and on the run with young Ben, Sayid shoots him.
Of course, Faraday told us that whatever happened, happened.
Of all the characters on the show, Sayid has taken the darkest turn since we met him. He is a long way from saving.