The Umbrella Academy: Who is Jennifer and what is the ‘Jennifer incident’?

Justin Min as Ben Hargreeves in Umbrella Academy
The “Jennifer incident” has something to do with the old Ben’s death and new Ben, too. Pic credit: Netflix

Warning: This article contains spoilers for The Umbrella Academy Season 3.

Viewers know two things about the new Ben Hargreeves in Season 3: He’s alive and a total jerk.

This timeline’s version of Ben features a gnarly scar across his eye and an attitude to match. Though he is skilled, he is also overly confident to the point of arrogance and quick to temper. However, the new Ben also has a fear of missing out and wants to be loved and respected by all of his siblings.

When Luther gets the chance to talk to the new Ben one-on-one, he mentions something about Ben’s death and “the Jennifer incident.” For viewers of the show, this was the first real detail about the circumstances of Ben’s death aside from his age and year of death.

What is the ‘Jennifer incident’?

As far as what the “Jennifer incident” is, the show hasn’t elaborated yet.

The most we know about it is that the “Jennifer incident” resulted in Ben’s death in the Umbrella’s original timeline, per Luther’s recollection.

However, fans learn a little more later when Viktor takes a breather in Ben’s room, which is filled with beautiful paintings, giving a lot of hints that this timeline shares some similarities with the first one.

Ben’s room teases at info about Jennifer

Upon entering Ben’s room, Viktor looks around after noticing several paintings.

The paintings share many similarities, as they are often just one color, they show the face of a girl or young woman, and they all have the name Jennifer written on them.

Though Viktor wouldn’t have been on the mission, Viktor likely knows how Ben died in his timeline, and the pictures give some significant clues that Ben met Jennifer in both universes.

Ben never elaborates on this during this season either, though it seems he has a special connection to Jennifer, whoever she is and wherever she is.

It’s possible that the first Ben, the one who died, was selfless enough to sacrifice himself on the horrible mission that went wrong. Since this new Ben seems to be a little more selfish and self-assured, perhaps he came across the same Jennifer but didn’t risk his own life to save her.

The number of paintings indicates that it’s something that Ben thinks about often, regardless of what happened. Hopefully, Season 4 will reveal all regarding Ben’s initial death.

The Umbrella Academy Season 3 is now streaming on Netflix.

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