Cooke is just an overambitious prick, and he's going to get us all killed.

Philip Lem is a Powder Ganger living in Vault 19 in 2281.


Philip Lem was sentenced to imprisonment in NCR Correctional Facility, for a series of thefts at NCR camps. He was an integral part of the prison breakout, but believes the Powder Gangers should turn themselves back in since the gang won't be able to sustain themselves much longer.

Interactions with the player characterEdit

Interactions overviewEdit

General Services Quests
Essential: noIcon cross
Companion: noIcon cross
Plays Caravan: noIcon cross
Merchant: noIcon cross
Repairman: noIcon cross
Doctor: noIcon cross
Rents bed/room: noIcon cross
Starts quests: yesIcon check
Involved in quests: noIcon cross




  • Killing Philip Lem will cause all of Vault 19 to become hostile; even if done stealthily.
  • Philip seems to be the only source of tortiseshell glassesIn-game spelling, punctuation and/or grammarIcon sic in the entire game. Though it appears that he does not always possess these glasses and may have ordinary sunglasses instead.
    • As of patch, he wears regular sunglasses except in the PC version.
  • After completing the quest, Why Can't We Be Friends? (choosing Cooke's side and killing the fire Geckos), Lem will appear reduced to a pile of flesh. And some escaped convicts will say, "Too bad for Lem... Guts were flyin' everywhere..." It is possible to trigger a dialogue with Cooke, after viewing the remains of Lem, in which Cooke admits to the killing.
    • If the aforementioned quest is completed in Cooke's favor, the doors to the Overseer's room where Lem resides will be locked until the last stage of the quest.
  • Though Lem claims that some of the other Powder Gangers in the vault also want to surrender to the NCR, none of them have any comments on that matter. In fact, some will even comment how "spineless" Lem has become.

Notable quotesEdit

  • "I'm a nobody. Just a survivor. Things were well enough until the NCR threw me behind bars."
  • "Cooke is just an overambitious prick, and he's going to get us all killed."
  • "Cooke is planning to use the sulfur to make bigger explosives. Will you check out the caves and see if there's anything you can do? Without access to the sulfur, he'll lose what influence he has left with the men here."


Philip Lem appears only in Fallout: New Vegas.

Behind the scenesEdit

50 Vault-Tec C.E.O.The following is based on unverified behind the scenes information and has not been confirmed by canon sources.

Phillip Lem's name is likely a reference to Phil and Lem, two humorously co-dependent and ethically conflicted scientists from the television show "Better Off Ted".

50 Vault-Tec C.E.O.End of information based on unverified behind the scenes information.