Did Donna Kill Ben in OMITB? Why? Theories

Hulu’s ‘Only Murders in the Building‘ season revolves around the death of actor Ben Glenroy, who dies on the opening night of his Broadway debut. As the narrative progresses, Donna DeMeo is revealed as the prime suspect in Ben’s death. However, her role as the producer of Ben’s Broadway debut complicates the situation. In the ninth episode, Charles, Mabel, and Oliver discover some solid clues that strongly suggest Donna may have been behind Ben’s death. Hence, viewers must be wondering whether Donna killed Ben and why she did it. SPOILERS AHEAD!

Donna Likely Killed Ben

Donna DeMeo is introduced in the third season of ‘Only Murders in the Building,’ with actress Linda Emond playing the role. Emond is primarily known for her stage acting work and has received three Tony Award nominations. She is also renowned for playing several roles in the ‘Law & Order’ franchise. Some viewers might also recognize Emond from her recurring role as Michelle-Anne Vanderhoven in HBO’s ‘Succession.’ Her other credits include shows such as ‘The Gilded Age‘ and ‘The Patient.’ In ‘Only Murders in the Building,’ Emond’s Donna is a Broadway producer who finances Oliver Putnam’s new murder mystery-themed play ‘Death Rattle,’ with Ben Glenroy (Paul Rudd) in the lead role.

However, when Ben is killed on the play’s opening night, Charles, Mabel, and Oliver start an investigation to solve the case. In the penultimate episode of season 3, the trio deduces that Ben was poisoned after eating a cookie moments before going on stage. They suspect Donna left the cookie in Ben’s room, knowing he couldn’t resist it after having a bad day. When her first plot failed, Donna pushed Ben down the elevator shaft to kill him. Donna also does not have a solid alibi to prove her whereabouts at the time of Ben’s murder. Moreover, the show has a history of revealing the true culprit in the season’s penultimate episode. As a result, it is almost certain that Donna killed Ben.

Theories About Donna’s Motives

Donna killing Ben Glenroy is a major surprise as she has a lot to lose from the actor’s death. Ben’s death results in the play, directed by Oliver, being stalled. However, as it turns out, killing the play appears to be Donna’s true motive. Earlier in the season, it is revealed that Donna’s son, Cliff DeMeo, is making his producing debut on Broadway with Oliver’s play. While Donna finances the play, it bears her son’s name as the producer. Before opening night, Donna learned about Maine’s scathing review of Oliver’s play. As a result, she realized that the play could end her son’s career before it began.

The ninth episode makes Donna’s motive evident, and it is also foreshadowed in the eighth episode during a conversation between Donna and Loretta. Donna comments about mothers going to great lengths to protect their children, sparking Loretta’s fake confession to protect her long-lost son, Dickie. Therefore, it seems like Donna was motivated by a desire to protect her son’s career. As a result, she killed Ben, the weak link in Oliver’s play, right before the debut show. However, it is also possible that Donna isn’t the only culprit.

Donna poisoned Ben, resulting in his collapse on stage. As a result, the opening night was postponed, and Donna could have fired Ben from the play later and did not need to go to great lengths by killing him twice in one night. Therefore, it is possible that Donna’s motive to kill Ben was something far darker or someone else was responsible for pushing Ben down the elevator. However, Donna almost certainly poisoned Ben, hoping it would delay the opening night and save her son’s career. Whether Donna went the extra distance to murder Ben a second time remains to be seen.

Read More: What Happened to Teddy Dimas? Did Nathan Lane Leave OMITB?