Or JUST WHAT DO YOU MEAN, 'ANTICHRIST'??
by Doug M. Saint Clair
It's been a year and a half since the little-known assassination of J.R.
"Bob" Dobbs at the Victoria Theater in San Francisco. Few probably see
that event as having affected world affairs in any direct way; but, as
with the Kennedy and King assassinations, one must wonder -- how different
would the world be now, had those men lived?
At least the public agrees that those were murders, that the victims were
real people to begin with. But the killing of "Bob" Dobbs was judged a
hoax, a "comedy show." 600 people may well have seen a man shot in cold
blood on that San Francisco stage, yet to this day most of them think it
was an assassination satire played out by actors. That, in fact, there
never was a "Bob" Dobbs at all.
It happened on January 21, 1984. It wasn't carried on the network news
orthe wire services. One San Francisco paper reported it... in the
entertainment section. Someone combined art, politics, and occult
demonology in the murder of a powerful man, and then successfuly
publicized it as comedy.
Evidence points in two directions -- both to Dobbs' own cult, The Church
of the SubGenius, and to what he called "The Conspiracy." If, after all,
the two have not since become one.
The origins of the Church are hard to pin down. The printed tracts have
always come from Dallas, but the image of "Bob" can show up anywhere these
days -- spray-painted on buildings, subliminally implanted in music
videos, pasted on bus depots. Even though few of his followers have ever
met him, they have felt compelled to spread his message across North
Whatever else the Church is, it is also disguised as a comedy group. The
underground pamphlets, weird dead-of-night "radio ministries," and
burlesque-like tent show revivals are funny enough -- but between the
lines of Dobbs' deliberately absurd diatribes is a genuine anger. The
humor masks something far more serious and, someone must have felt, more
The 25,000 or so SubGeniuses don't exactly "girdle the globe in a great
Belt of Abnormality," as the Church claims, but the cult is still
spreading faster than, for instance, early Mormonism. In 1983,
McGraw-Hill and the mysterious "SubGenius Foundation" published the
elaborate BOOK OF THE SUBGENIUS , and "Mutant Conventions" started
cropping up around the country, looking more like wild free-for-alls than
anything else. The Church has always presented itself as, among other
things, an excuse to party on the edge, and this may have drawn to its
fold many who would otherwise have shied away from its more radical
Although Dobbs had a small army to do his bidding, he always insisted he
didn't want mindless followers. SubGeniuses were supposed to make up
their own religions, to "pull the wool over their own eyes." He never
promised to save souls; he was a "Short Duration Personal Savior," a sort
of fast-food for the spirit.
But it was already starting to go sour when the "SubGenius World Crusade"
revival was held in San Francisco. The audience was full of what the
Church scornfully calls "Bobbies" -- trendies who wanted to be seen, and
seekers who wanted to be led. Some were only pretending that "Bob" was
real; others probably would have given their lives for him.
The star SubGenius "preachers" and others of the Church hierarchy were
planning to "shoot" a fake Dobbs lookalike as part of the show, supposedly
in an effort to shock the "Bobbies." Witnesses overheard them arguing
over who would get to pull the trigger of the blank gun. But so many
people were carrying real guns backstage, it was difficult for outsiders
to tell "security" from actors. This was unnerving; people tended to
assume the Church was exagerating when it boasted of enforcement branches
like"The Brotherhood of "Bob."
The Victoria Theater was dressed out like a futuristic Nazi beer hall,
with enormous "Bob" posters covering the walls and a metal tub of purple
Kool-Aid at the door from which everyone was supposed to drink. Some
thought this a rather tasteless gesture considering the Church's early
involvement with Rev. Jim Jones and The People's Temple, a relationship
they'd long tried to whitewash.
For the first two hours, the revival was typical SubGenius future shock
entertainment -- feverish anti-establishment jeremiads, healings,
"sickenings," wristwatch-smashings, and other mostly staged violence and
ecstacy. A bucket of pills was sprinkled over the heads of the faithful;
a huge balloon of the Earth was exploded in a grim ritual celebrating the
Apocalypse. The choir sang gospel versions of songs like "Inna Gadda Da
Vida" and "In The Year 2525."
Then"The Rev. Howl" (aka Hal Robins) announced that "Bob" Dobbs was about
to make his first public appearance in 13 years. Hushed murmuring filled
the hall, punctuated by a few sarcastic remarks from sceptics wondering
how good the "lookalike" would be. The curtain started to rise, then
fell, then rose again -- some say they heard the sounds of an argument and
scuffle backstage -- and then, out of the broiling theatrical fog which
hid half the stage, strolled the legendary "Bob" Dobbs.
The crowd was stunned into silence for the space of a heartbeat. It was
"Bob." Then a deafening roar rose up, a roar over which silencer-muffled
gunshots would have been impossible to hear.
It was over in 3 seconds. A tall man later identified as D. Woodman
Atwell (or "Puzzling Evidence," as he was known on his KPFA SubGenius
radio show) dashed across the stage brandishing a small handgun and, as
Dobbs began to wave to the crowd, fired three shots (some heard four) into
Dobbs started to go down, clutching his stomach. But before he hit the
floor, his head was seen by many to suddenly "implode" upon itself, then
splatter outward in a spray of blood. Still waving his gun, Atwell
started to yell into the mike, when Bob Black of The Last International*
slammed an empty liquor bottle against his head and he collapsed. * Black
has since gone into hiding.
The choir and the audience erupted into screams. "The Pope of New York,"
David Meyer (whose armed bodyguards had done nothing to stop Dobbs'
assailant), joined Robins at Dobbs' side, followed by a great crush of
people streaming out from backstage. Reports vary as to what followed.
Reporter Ted Stack, who had climbed onto the stage in the bedlam, later
wrote to a friend that he glimpsed "Bob's" body being hauled further
backstage by three grim, official-looking men, all dressed in black. He
started to follow when yet another black-clad man pushed him back,
flashing some sort of badge at him. When he turned back to the crowd on
stage, he realized that "... another Dobbs had taken the place of the
dead man -- a fairly close lookalike, and definitely alive and breathing.
His chest was covered with ketchup, and he was pretending to be dead."
(From his letter to Dave Rothbell in Dallas.) Stack was suspicious that
no one would acknowledge the switch, but unfortunately, he was killed in a
bizarre auto accident a few weeks before he was scheduled to testify.
As the audience spontaneously began to chant, "Bob" is dead! Long live
"Bob"! Kill the Pinks," Robins seized the mike and launched into an
almost certainly prepared speech about how Dobbs could "never really die."
The Band That Dare Not Speak Its Name performed an appropriately
theatrical ending song, "Sick of "Bob," while director Paul Mavrides
declared the show over and brought the curtain down.
Most audience members streamed out the exits, chattering about what a
"funny show" it had been. Stack, however, and a few others who had been
close to the stage, suffered a nagging feeling of unreality. Said Stack
in his letter, "Everyone acted as if nothing unusual had happened. People
had just seen a man killed, but they were talking about the cast party.
It was like some horrible Hitchcock movie."
Another concerned witness, whose name need not be mentioned here, called
the SFPD and was told not to worry, that they (and the FBI as well) "had
men on the scene." But neither office would acknowledge a killing.
Records showed several arrests after the "performance," but all were
released almost immediately without even being booked.
Two SFPD plainclothesmen who were on duty at the show absolutely refuse
comment. However, one has been quoted as laughing off questions by
saying, "...some of the deadest things are the ones that never died at
Efforts were made to contact Mavrides and SubGenius Foundation
administrator Rev. Ivan Stang in their gargoyle-lined TransAmerica
Pyramid offices. They wouldn't return calls, and had beefed up personal
security with guard dogs and elaborate warning systems. Questions to
Church insiders were answered with furtive, hunted glances or evasive
wisecracks. Attempts to contact choir members revealed that 12 of the
original 15 had either moved away, or disappeared outright. Many had been
using assumed names.
While independent investigators were stymied, there was interest in the
'event' from surprisingly high places. Several large multinational
corporations apparently sent representatives to San Francisco to quietly
look into the shooting. And, although the White House denies it, a secret
investigation was conducted called "The Hinckey Commission," chaired by
Republican Senator Edward Hinckey from Ohio. The Commission adjourned
after only two weeks without releasing any findings, and President Reagan
ordered the testimonies sealed for the next 100 years, but a few
classified documents from the Commission were circulated by "dissident
SubGeniuses" in the Justice Department.
These raised far more questions than answers. Much of the physical
evidence has disappeared. The Victoria Theater had been crawling with
government agents (Secret Service and CIA as well as police, FBI and
attorney Mark Lane), but there was no cooperation between them; each made
off with their own pieces of evidence, like cavemen fighting over parts of
a slain dinosaur. Among the items that disappeared: the guns, the
shells, the Altar, "Bob's" shoes, his pipe, his wallet... and his brain.+
+The body itself, minus the contents of the skull, was confiscated by a
mysterious Dallas "forensic laboratory" and is said to repose in a block
of lucite in the penthouses of an unnamed Dallas skyscraper, preventing
further autopsying with the Russian "Kirlian X-Ray" technology that could
positively identify the corpse as Dobbs'.
The Hinckey Commission decided that Atwell was the only gunman, and that
the first bullet left his gun, tore through Dobbs' abdomen, ricochetted
off the bowl of the giant Pipe sculpture behind him, and split into two
pieces --one of which went straight through his head from a low angle
behind him, while the other bounced off the Golden Calf statue and back at
Dobbs' head from the other side -- "in one ear and out the other," as
someone has morbidly quipped. Atwell's other two bullets lodged inside
the cult leader's chest.
However, investigator William Burke insists several bullets may not have
been recovered by the Commission. One may have been fired from backstage
right, piercing Dobbs' neck and exiting near the Right Sternoid Process.
Another of the head shots could have come from the mouth of the 10' Dobbs
bust, which was certainly large enough to have hidden a man. A search of
the back wall of the theater for imbedded bullets might have helped
determine the presence of such a gunman, but that entire section of the
Victoria was remodeled shortly after the shooting and the wall was
In March the Church itself finally announced that Dobbs had been killed --
but the description was couched in the same tongue-in-cheek style as the
rest of their outlandish "dogma." Members were instructed to send large
donations to aid in "the re-erection of our slain High Epopt." They even
offered for sale a videotape of the shooting
This videotape has been tampered with. (It disappeared right after the
shootings, but inexplicably reappeared two days later.) Two crucial shots
have been removed which might have shown the "body switch" between the
real Dobbs and the actor. Furthermore, 158 frames of the shooting itself
have been digitally altered so that the gory cranial wounds are never
seen, Dobbs' head being duplicated from previous frames and carefully
reinserted over the "bleeding head" shots frame by frame. Other areas of
the frame that may have shown hidden gunmen have also been changed. This
technique requires expensive equipment; whoever altered the tape had fast
access to extremely sophisticated facilities.
The few eyewitnesses who can still be located say they heard more than the
three or possibly four gunshots that are audible on the video soundtrack,
and Atwell shouted several sentences which were also deleted.
Other witnesses? Of the 600 in the audience, 112 are dying of A.I.D.S.
right now. Another 150 cannot be accounted for at all. Most of the rest
refuse comment, or else are emotionally unstable "Bobbies" whose testimony
must be discounted.
There were photos snapped just before and after the shooting; all have
been confiscated. One of the photographers is in a mental institution
after a nearly fatal "accidental overdose." The drug in question was
described as "an unidentified hallucinogen." This tied in with rumors
that the supposedly fictitious mind-altering Church herb, "Frop," was
based on a real though little-known "designer drug."
D. Woodman Atwell -- Killer or Patsy?
Atwell, who had a Naval Intelligence background before joining the Church,
was acquitted by the Hinkey Commission. They concluded that he had been
the victim of a "prank," and had thought the gun was loaded with blanks
when he shot at Dobbs. No attempt was made to ascertain the identity of
Meanwhile, the Church was sued by dozens of people who claimed to be
Dobbs' illegitimate children and wanted in on his will. Psychotics all
over the country were proclaiming themselves to be "Bob", reborn.
There was terrible squabbling and division between the various apostles
and their flocks or "Clenches." Many true believers thought the whole
thing was a set-up to convince "The Conspiracy" that Dobbs was dead, but
schizms broke off. Some factions believed that Dobbs' wife "Connie" had
him killed; Others, that the Nestle Company had wanted him out of the way
of some business enterprise involving Third World infant formula
Coincidences relating to the shooting abounded. Researchers in Texas
compiled a list of the synchronistic events that occurred during or after
There had been a small earthquake in San Francisco just as the Night of
Slack began -- and, simultaneously, a spectacular UFO 'flap' in Ohio. And
at the precise moment of Dobbs' death, his dog was being shot by a farmer
in Missouri for raiding his chickens! Also, a tank of insecticide
mysteriously exploded at U.S. Cyanamid in New Jersey, whales beached
themselves in Cape Cod, and a communications satellite was knocked out by
SubGeniuses continued to report sightings of "Bobs" or "Bob" lookalikes --
always driving past in a car, always winking enigmatically -- and
paranormal manifestations of a mocking "Bad Bob" entity. Some researchers
who tried to delve deeper into this issue were plagued by mysterious
headaches until they were forced to abandon it.
There were strange rumors. Dobbs' right-hand man Dr. Philo Drummond was
reported wandering the streets after the shooting, hysterically screaming,
"Dobbs has won!" -- but sounding, the witnesses said, "as if he were
trying to convince himself of something."
Questions remain as to whether the cult's hierarchy had themselves
believed in "Bob" prior to the shooting. The theory has been advanced
that when the Church Elders realized Dobbs, and not a double, had been
shot, with real bullets instead of blanks, they too had tried to establish
proof but were then frightened by some other agency into dropping the
A private investigator hired by one of the wealthier SubGenius splinter
groups turned up unexpected and disillusioning information on some of
Dobbs' business dealings. The new drug, 'Frop,' was real, but was itself
just a cover... for what, no one has been able to determine. What was
the Church shipping out of the Himalayas? And could Dobbs really have
been trading with South African nuclear power interests?
A check of phone company records showed that Ronald Reagan had been trying
to reach "Bob" for weeks prior to his death, but that Dobbs hadn't
returned his calls. This may help explain Reagan's urgency in setting up
the Hinckey Commission. Dobbs may have possessed information Reagan
wanted either to know, or to keep secret.
Recently, this reporter secured a copy of Dobbs' travel agenda for the
months prior to the shooting. Before arriving in San Francisco, he had
been in South Dakota -- very possibly confering with certain Sioux Indian
"medicine men" said to be his 'advisors.' Before that stopover he had
visited the Church's Maysian jungle settlement called Dobbstown and,
incredibly, the Vatican. Not 3 days before his death, Dobbs had
apparently held a secret audience with the Pope.
Hundreds of seemingly unrelated political events coincide with Dobbs'
travels. The Paris police, who have dealt with the Church on many
occasions, have a file on Dobbs which asserts that massive drug deals
involving secret Italian Masonic organizations and European heroin
connections served as a "cover" for the smuggling of something else -- but
they have yet to discover what was in the blue metal cannisters that Dobbs
shipped from place to place from 1982 through 1984.
It gradually was made clear that Dobbs' non-Church activities included
many diverse aspects of international finance and intrigue, from the White
House and the CIA to Nicaraguan Leftists, from the Howard Hughes estate
and the Mormons to the Mafia, from the Rockefellers and Bilderbergers to
occultists and New Age fascist groups. Dobbs had even financed a secret
Russian expedition into Tibet to investigate certain UFO "landings" and
Whose side was "Bob" on? What game was he playing?
It was the UFO connection that, to some SubGenius fringe groups, made a
lot of the puzzle pieces start to fit. Almost all connected the killing
to the "Illuminati Conspiracy" theory that all history is manipulated by
esoteric secret societies of "Illuminated Ones," who are in turn doing the
bidding of Luciferian entities. Some mix in such outlandish elements as
Hitler's occult beliefs in a superior race of UFO-riding Hidden Masters in
the "Hollow Earth." According to SubGenius Inner Sanctum teachings, Dobbs
infiltrated the Third Reich in 1945 and, after providing America with
information that helped win the war, killed Hitler with his bare hands.
The same Germanic "Thule" religion that Hitler advocated is not far
removed from the classic occult belief system behind the Masonic fronts
that many fringe groups believe control the U.S. Government. As one
cultist wondered in The Stark Fist of Removal Church magazine, "They knew
what Dobbs had done to Hitler -- were they worried what he would do to
This brought to mind "Bob's" unique directives regarding UFOS. Whereas
most New Age groups look upon them as friendly "Ascended Space Brothers,"
Dobbs issued dour warnings about them. If there were a "War in the
Heavens," the extremists suggest, the ETs involved would certainly have
wanted him silenced; he appealed to a crucial audience that could
concievably be enlisted to fight the "Space Brothers."
Perhaps the most disturbing evidence that circulated in the wake of the
assassination are a series of incomplete manuscripts said to have been
stolen by the radical "Angels of Slack" schism from an office in Chicago
belonging to the Trilateral Commission. Crude photocopies of these
documents do bear a Trilateral Commission letterhead, but that would be
easy to counterfeit. Nevertheless, several legitimate researchers swear
that the manuscripts are authentic.
One document purports to be"Bob's" last letter to the Church. It was
dated the day of his death and written on Delta Airlines stationary --
perhaps enroute to San Francisco. If it is not genuine, it is a perfect
imitation of Dobbs' florid, overblown writing style.
Memo to the Churches Jan. 21, 1984
From afar, as in dreams and visions, I have been given to see that which
I must depart from you for a time. Soon, by the hand of one among you, I
shall go to Asgard, home of heroes slain by the Conspiracy, to sip the
nectar of Eternal Slack.
My real Church shall lose its name, while a false church steals it.
During The Time And Half Time my prophets and Fishers of Wallets shall be
persecuted, and Bobbies and pinks shall rule in their stead; but heed not
the False Prophet who comes in my name, and my aspect. BEWARE YE THE
ANTI-ME; for he shall cause great dissention among the Clenches. Follow
none who "follow" me, and say I sex through them alone; this is antislack!
The great Beasts, America and Russia, shall be made to fight by the
trickery of the Great White Brotherhood, which is dmons; and none shall
win but The Conspiracy, in the guise of the Church of the End Times. O,
thou art a stupid people; verily, this Lost Continent of America is like
unto the bastard child of Atlantis, which was smited before ye in its
Slacklessness; for ye know not thine asses from holes in the ground.
But ye shall be saved by the stupidity of thine own Slack. I love the
stupid and the crazy; for they are my customers.
Though this mortal shell be sacrificed to the hate-greased bullets of the
faithless, yet I shall come again in a lunch hour that thou knowest not.
My Pipe and my Frop burn eternal; the flame of my love and sex shall light
thy path unto prosperity. Yea, I shall come into flesh when the lame
general under a moon of flame presses the button of the Kiss of Nuclear
Judgement; and the Sneeze of Wotan shall wash clean the iniquity and the
toxic wastes in the scouring radiations of Divine Love. The pink at heart
shall be smited like unto the snivelling grubs of fecal damnation.
But ye whose names are written in the Book of the Yeti, who were in Eden
before thine birth here on the topmost floor of Hell, where the damned
think they are alive and walking on Earth -- ye shall be as Immune; so I
commission thee to carry this my Seed-Code of the Covenant unto the
nations that thou may earn instant riches on this earthly plane. Sell not
for low thine souls, but hold out for the Highest Price; and the Slack
shall run like rivers of urine down the Path of Least Resistance in thine
lives. For thou art in the Company of the Chosen; the Turning of the Key
which precedes the Œpening of the Doorway which leadeth to the
Kingdom of Slack, IS NIGH. These are the Commandments not of Me, but of
WOTAN, before Whom one so unworthy as I cringes and pees uncontrollably.
I have enjoyed selling you the One True Church of the SubGenius.
J.R. "Bob" Dobbs
This letter, if it is not a prank, must have been in Dobbs' pocket when he
died; there is a bullet hole in the middle of his signature.
Along with the letter is a huge report labeled, "PROJECT MELLOW-BOB".
Bearing no clue to its authorship, it details a plan to kill Dobbs and
place the blame on the original apostles, allowing the Church to be taken
over by "Bobbies" who could then be manipulated by other powers.
These "Bobbie" dupes are to be led by a "resurrected" Dobbs imitation
called "The Mellow Bob." (See exhibit F.) Whether this is a person or
merely a "concept" like Big Brother is hard to determine. The notes say:
"Now that he is risen from the dead, "Bob" has gained new insights that
give him a 'softer' position on "The Conspiracy." He does not condone it,
but believes in peaceful coexistence. Ultimately, he says, The Conspiracy
is just a metaphor for certain faults we all hold, and which we must
someday come to accept as natural. Progress toward a healthier economy
will bring Slack to all mankind.This can happen once the Normal population
has been reduced to a manageable level. Those who bear the mark will be
promised protection, of course."
Also mentioned is the Biblical passage of Revelation 13:13, in which a
False Prophet calls down "fire" from the sky (UFOs?) , thereafter to
"bring life to the Image of the Beast [The Antichrist]... he will suffer
a head wound, and live."
The implication is that someone is staging a false Second Coming.
According to the conspirators, Dobbs wasn't the Antichrist, and in fact
stood in the way of any such would-be world dictators -- but in the right
circumstances, someone like him could become an "Antichrist," ushering in
a hideous world where Crucifixes are replaced by tiny dead "Bobs" hung
from the necks of the enslaved "faithful." The report goes on, about a
One World Religion that would jumble Christianity, the Occult, Communism,
and the decay of the family into Inquisition-like barbarism.
Interspersed throught the manuscript are fragments of prophecy from
archaic religions, and secret reports on CIA-sponsored "ritual sacrifices"
in the crumbling temples of Cambodia (blamed on the Pol Pot)... certain
ceremonies, "...far more sophisticated than The Philadelphia Experiment,"
that are to "...open the Dimensional Portals and let the Elder Gods
There are veiled references to something called 'CHURCH AIR.' Dobbs'
prediction for the arrival of aliens in 1998 ("X-Day") is mentioned, but
there is something planned for this 'Air' just before X-Day. "Human
expectations, raised to their highest among a whole population and then
cruelly shattered, provides the energy of despair on which the Masters can
feed. The Pinks will literally sell their souls for one last gasp of the
Certainly, it is difficult to lend any credence to this bizarre mishmash.
It may well be just an elaborate forgery by disillusioned SubGeniuses. On
the other hand, evidence is overwhelming that there has been a coverup
conducted by persons in high places... and no other motive for the
assassination has been firmly established.
Why was "Bob" targeted? Why not Baghwan Rajneesh, or Sun Myung Moon, or
Kurt Saxon? The Moonies, Scientologists and so forth all give The
Establishment trouble too, and are much better organized than the
One paranoid theory holds that the Church apostles hadn't believed that
"The Conspiracy" they raved about was real until Dobbs was killed...
that, even though they meant to be joking, they were inadvertently blowing
the cover on a real group of evil entities (the so-called "Elder Gods").
When they found out the truth, they were threatened with death unless they
kept their teachings couched in an absurdist, humorous style -- which
would help to discredit more serious research into the darker aspects of
conspiracy theory and the paranormal.
If there really was a secret organization of freedom-fighters in America,
theorists point out, wouldn't it have to start out acting like a joke,
just to survive? And if there really were such things as "evil forces"
trying to establish themselves on this planet, wouldn't they want to look
like a joke too, at first?
Whether one gives any credence to such hypotheses or not, Dobbs' religion
definitely wasn't doing what religions were supposed to do. It was
something the Government couldn't keep track of. They had infiltrated the
Hierarchy to the core, and all they'd found were good old boys having loud
parties, more into their irresponsible idea of "Slack" than revolution or
theology. "Bob" represented something that any totalitarian regime,
secret or otherwise, would want to kill -- the kind of 'illumination' that
the average slob on the street could understand. He had come up with the
first religion that appealed to SINNERS, because he was one of them. His
was a church that made it fun to be a "Good Guy". Dobbs was a "regular
joe," even a bungler, as Chosen Prophets go. But he raved eloquently
about the "Slack" that was daily being stolen from us all by the vast,
secret, all-pervading "Conspiracy" and its "normal" dupes. As bizarre and
cartoonlike as SubGenius theology was, people perversely came away from it
feeling like they had a grip on things. No matter how difficult life got,
they could always depend on the SubGeniuses to be even more twisted than
they were. It gave its adherents a sort of perspective... and with that,
a will to fight.
With this in mind, it would make sense for a "conspiracy" to either stop
the SubGeniuses... or to coopt them.
Only one thing is certain. Whether this "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington"
character was the only religious leader capable of saving the unsaveable,
or just another huckster out to shuck the gullible, or both, he was
sufficiently threatening to someone big that he was killed like a dog --
and the few people who noticed called it "art."
The remaining faithful SubGeniuses are bitter that Dobbs' enemies got away
with killing him so easily. As investigator N. Phelge put it in his
book, Puzzling Evidence in San Francisco, "So much of the truth remained
to be told. "Bob" had barely started. And now the Conspiracy can turn it
[the Church] into a collection of hateful nerdy fan-geeks, then into a
fad, and then...another piece of the Con's master puzzle."
To many investigators who once thought the Church a joke, it's not so
But maybe the more optimistic SubGeniuses are right: that Dobbs is hiding
out somewhere, enjoying a big laugh at the expense of both his enemies and
his followers. If his last letter is to be believed, he knew it was all
coming. It may even have been part of his plans. Perhaps Dobbs knew that
having himself "slain" was the only way to bring the Church back to life.
It had been mired down for a long time, spinning its wheels in a muddy
limbo between poverty and celebrity; McGraw-Hill (an affiliate of The
Trilateral Commission) practically yanked THE BOOK OF THE SUBGENIUS off
the shelves just as it was about to turn into a bestseller. As Dobbs
himself had frequently said, "Death makes the best P.R. agent."
Besides, on the off chance that "Bob" Dobbs was all that he said he was...
...for all anyone knows, he may already be World Overlord.
Exhibit A: PROOF OF DOBBS
While SubGenius Church pamphlets and tracts have been appearing only since
1978, Dobbs -- or someone much like him -- has been leaving hints since
the early Fifties. In hundreds of old ads, it is definitely the same man!
That someone was setting it up even then is unarguable.
Exhibit B: COMPUTER ENHANCED BLOW-UP REVEALS CROUCHING FIGURE
Although Atwell is clearly seen aiming at Dobbs' stomach, at least 4
bullets went through the religious leader's head. The most mysterious
bullet, nicknamed "King Slug" by researchers, entered one ear and exited
the other -- strongly suggesting that a second gunman was hiding behind
the Golden Calf (Circle A in diagram). Possible third gunman is vaguely
seen in Circle B.
Yet a fourth gunman may have been hiding inside the huge "Bob" sculpture
(C). Fingerprinting its interior might provide proof, but during a
suspicious "photo session" it plunged to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Exhibit C: WOUNDS OF DECEPTION
Doug Saint Clair was able to obtain a faded xerox of a classified
Coroner's Report on a certain "John Doe" victim that is almost certainly
Dobbs. (To identify him would have meant admitting the murder had
happened!) Attached to this were ballistics test reports, wound area
pictures, and diagrams of bulletholes on a theater stage, which was also
unnamed in the document.
Exhibit D: D.Woodman Atwell -- Assassin or Dupe?
This photograph of Dobbs' accused killer, sent anonymously to Senator Ed
Hinckey, has been doctored to make it appear as if Atwell held a
long-standing grudge against Dobbs. Researchers believe the background
and figure were staged, and Atwell's head added later, by someone who was
using the disaffected SubGenius Hierarch as a patsy.
Exhibit E: Diagram of Victoria Theater Stage with Probable Bullet
Exhibit F: "THE MELLOW BOB"
Exhibit G: DOES DOBBS STILL LIVE??
(Left)The computer-enhanced enlargement of a photo stolen from CIA files
shows a ruined-looking man being rolled on a wheelchair out a door marked
"Mood Surgery" at some undisclosed government facility. Could Dobbs be
alive, held captive and rendered a living vegetable by some secret branch
of the Conspiracy?(Right) Dobbs, prematurely aged by torture at the hands
of ruthless Conspiracy doctors?
JHVH-1 is mad at me. I'm hiding out here for awhile. He won't look here.
Don't call. -- "Bob"
In April, The SubGenius Foundation recieved this letter on Holiday Inn
stationary. The signature resembles "Bob's", but his reckless scrawl
would be easy to imitate. The letter is probably just another "Bobbie's"
sick idea of a joke.
1. The Conspiracy killed Dobbs; Atwell was their agent and knew the gun
2. Atwell is an innocent patsy; The Conspiracy put real bullets in a gun
which he thought was loaded with blanks. No other gunmen.
3. Atwell was a patsy, but there were 3 other gunmen.
4. It really all a hoax; there never was a "Bob" Dobbs.
5. Dobbs' wife "Connie" got D. Woodman Atwell to shoot Dobbs by
promising him sexual favors.
6. Dobbs himself staged the shooting, using a double -- he's in hiding.
7. Dobbs staged it but accidentally got himself killed instead of the
8. Dobbs travelled back in time from a future in which he had become
World Overlord, and shot himself so that that future would never happen.
9. This article itself is part of a conspiracy to discredit Conspiracy
THE FRINGE GROUPS:
A. Those who don't believe in "Bob"
B. Those who do believe in "Bob"
1. "Bob" isn't really dead; still secretly runs Church
2. "Bob" isn't dead, but doesn't want anything to do with Church
3. "Bob" is dead and won't be back.
4. "Bob" is dead and will be back.
5. "Bob" is dead and will be back, but only this particular group can
bring him back.
6. "Bob" is dead but will be replaced by a "Conspiracy" double
7. "Bob" is a vegetable and is imprisoned by "The Conspiracy"; will be
replaced by a Conspiracy double.
8. "Bob" is a vegetable but still runs the Church.
What of "Bob's" last words?
There are conflicting reports. Ivan Stang claimed Dobbs muttered, "The
Doorway to ... It's opening! You must close it! The Key is..." -- and
then expired. Robins, however, recalled Dobbs mumbling about "...secret
instructions... Stang... must not know."
*The Church constantly pleads poverty, yet rumors persist of their having
purchased huge tracts of land in Malaysia, Bolivia and Brazil, and
establishing Dobbstowns I, II and III in the jungles. Where did that kind
of money come from?