"If it had more time to finish, it would have looked and sounded and acted just like Bennings!"
R.J. MacReady.[src]

The Bennings-Thing was an incomplete Thing which partially assumed the form of Bennings, a meteorologist stationed at U.S. Outpost 31. The creature appeared in the 1982 film The Thing.


Intent on storing the remains of the Norwegian Thing for further study, and unaware of the ongoing cellular activity in the creature, Bennings and Windows move the sheet-covered Things to the store-room on Dr. Copper's orders. As Windows goes off to fetch the keys from Garry, Bennings is left alone to collect his gear from the room. As he fumbles through the equipment, with his back to the creature, a tentacle slowly slips from beneath the sheet.

A short while later, Windows returns with the keys to find a bloody, half-naked Bennings alongside the creature, clutched by several writhing tentacles. He flees, dropping the keys, and quickly returns with MacReady and Fuchs, only to find that Bennings is gone and the supply window has been smashed from the inside. Through the broken window, the onlookers see Bennings' silhouette staggering through the snow at a frenetic pace, evidence that his wounded leg was also imitated in the assimilation process. They chase the lumbering, half-complete imitation of Bennings outside, where it collapses to its knees and is surrounded by the men.

It had time to grab clothes and no more appears bloodied, and its head is fully restored to a human appearance. However, its hands are still "unfinished" and appear extremely malformed, little more than irregular, overlong splinters of bone covered in raw flesh. Revealed, the Thing lets out an inhuman roar, perhaps voicing some kind of frustration that it was detected only minutes before it would have imitated Bennings perfectly.

MacReady incinerates it using a drum of gasoline and a flare. Watched by all the men, the event served as confirmation of the creature's ability to replicate other life forms.

Unlike most Things when revealed, Bennings-Thing attempted no attack on the humans, nor did it initiate a flurry of violent transformation. Also, it collapsed in the snow after only minimal pursuit. This may suggest that a newly-formed (recently-assimilated) Thing has little energy to spare and is easily exhausted, as if the assimilation process itself is very taxing for it. It was in no position to either fight, quickly transform or even run very fast.