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Riley Keough to outdo Elisabeth Moss for most hypocritical Scientologist?

[Riley Keough and Elisabeth Moss]

Yesterday, Deadline announced that Riley Keough will be joining Dakota Johnson to star in a limited television series based on an upcoming memoir of a woman who escaped the “Children of God” cult.

Johnson will play the Children of God escapee who will team up with her friend, played by Keough, to “investigate and document contemporary cults existing in America today.”

Oh, where do we start.

For the last few years you’ve no doubt seen media outlets wonder how Elisabeth Moss, who grew up in Scientology, could play Offred in The Handmaid’s Tale with a straight face. Having grown up in a totalitarian organization known for forcing young women into abortions and exerting extreme control over its members with psychological indoctrination, Moss’s Emmy-winning turn in the Hulu series based on Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel about extreme patriarchy must have required some serious cognitive dissonance on Moss’s part.

At one point, we pointed out how much Moss’s lines in the series resembled the kinds of testimony that Scientology Sea Org members had given to the FBI about the horrific conditions in Scientology’s secretive compounds.


If Moss heard the questions being raised about her performance, she made it pretty plain that she didn’t care.


Keough is the daughter of Lisa Marie Presley and, like Moss, grew up in Scientology, as her mother did. A few years ago we wrote about Lisa Marie’s attempt at a showdown with Scientology leader David Miscavige that took place in October 2014, and that she made it quite plain to the rest of her family that she was through with the church. It had been obvious for a few years that Lisa Marie was pulling away from Scientology, and our sources told us that after her showdown at the Flag Land Base in Clearwater, Florida, she not only left but also pulled out her mother Priscilla and her daughter Riley.

The next year, 2015, Lisa Marie was on the warpath and engineered one of David Miscavige’s biggest public relations debacles, when it was revealed that he was paying private investigators $10,000 a week to follow his own father, Ron Miscavige. Ron also wrote about Lisa Marie’s disaffection in his 2016 book, “Ruthless.”

Since that time, however, Lisa Marie has been through the wringer as her marriage to musician Michael Lockwood turned into a bitter divorce and custody battle.

And in the meantime, we were hearing that Riley had gone back into the church, which appeared to be confirmed last year with Riley’s choice of close Scientologist friends.

Priscilla denied that she’d left the church in a press report, and as for Lisa Marie, it’s hard to know where she stands today.

Then, disaster struck the family as Riley’s younger brother Benjamin Keough ended his own life with a firearm, and in his mother’s Calabasas home on July 12 (fortunately Lisa Marie wasn’t there at the time). He was only 27 years old.

We reported the next day that before he killed himself, Ben had told a close friend that he was struggling with life after Scientology. “Ben had been talking about how fucked up kids get in Scientology,” our source told us.

It was the first thing that came to our minds yesterday when we saw the news that his sister Riley will be playing a character “investigating cults” in America.



In the press release cited by Deadline, Dakota Johnson noted how thrilled she was to be working with Keough. But that’s understandable. They’re longtime close friends, and Dakota at one time dated Danny Masterson’s younger brother Jordan, another lifelong Scientologist.

We sent a note of congratulations to author Bexy Cameron yesterday, whose memoir about growing up in the Children of God will be turned into the TV series. And we asked if one of the groups Riley’s character will end up investigating will resemble Scientology.

We’ll let you know if she gets back to us.


The Chynna syndrome

Meanwhile, in more useless news from the world of celebrity, we wanted to bring you up to date on the latest from Chynna Phillips and Billy Baldwin.

A couple of weeks ago, we told you that Chynna, the daughter of musician John Phillips and an evangelical Christian in Southern California, had become a YouTuber and oversharer. On Memorial Day, it turned out, Chynna and her husband actor Billy Baldwin had spent the day with Chynna’s half-sister Bijou Phillips, who is married to Danny Masterson. Chynna, Billy, and Bijou recorded a brief YouTube video on Bijou’s back patio at her Santa Ynez home, and we found it relevant because they discussed Danny’s throwback, overbearing style with women. And they did so just days before the lifelong Scientologist actor was charged criminally with raping three women who were Scientologists at the time of their attacks.

We were grateful that Chynna, the oversharer, had provided us a glimpse of how Bijou perceived her husband.

Now, in two more recent videos, Chynna has made more notable admissions.

On Sunday, more than a week after we had featured her in relation to her brother-in-law’s rape case, she posted a 24-minute exposition revealing that she too had been the subject of a sexual assault as a young woman, and believed that her attacker had drugged her. (Masterson is suspected of drugging his victims.) But as an evangelical, she said “Once you come to Christ that stain is taken away by his blood. It is removed forever, completely completely forgotten.”

Was Chynna suggesting that Danny Masterson’s victims accept Christ and move on? The timing did seem rather odd.

And then Wednesday, Chynna revealed in a new video that she and her husband have tested positive for Covid-19.


We hope they recover quickly.


Source Code

“The Fifth Invader Force came in to use this area, and the name of this solar system is Space Station 33. They started to use this area without suspecting that the Fourth Invader Force had been there for God knows how many skillion years, had been sitting down, and they have their installations up on Mars, and they have a tremendous, screened operation…Now, as I say, this sounds science-fictiony. Well, don’t let it sound science-fictiony to you, because the truth be told, it’s not science fiction. In the first place, it’s not fiction, and it really isn’t very closely resembling what you read and call science fiction. Science fiction is just a very chimerical sort of a picture of it. Space is wild. There aren’t any writers down here and there’s no audience down here that could take real stuff about space. It’s wild!” — L. Ron Hubbard, October 30, 1952


Overheard in the FreeZone

“The statement: ‘I support Biden/Harris’ is an admission of out-tech and out-ethics and probably a symptom of dementia. Wog democracy votes for those who are going to exterminate them. Of course Democrats might say they are well-intended, but the bank makes them vote for the ones who kill them. I understand politics as a Scientologist.”


Past is Prologue

1997: Martin Ottmann posted an article from Scientology’s Celebrity magazine, in which the Los Angeles Police Department praised Scientology. “In time of rising violence where police officers literally risk their lives on a daily basis, they deserve the support of groups who have the purpose and dedication to get youth on the right track — free from drugs and crime. The Church of Scientology is one group which, in respect and appreciation of Hollywood’s police officers, have constantly given their support. In recognition of this support, Celebrity Centre International was recognized by the California Police Activities League (PAL) as the ‘Organization of the Year for 1996’ for ‘their outstanding contribution to their community through the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Hollywood PAL.'”



Random Howdy

“When people say they got some good out of Scientology, I think to myself, ‘Yeah, telling your problems, fantasies or opinions to anybody, including hookers and homeless people, makes everybody feel better…derp!.’ This blog is my ‘auditing’.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Masterson’s demurrer denied Oct 19, arraignment delayed to November 2.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay’s sentencing set for October 29 in White Plains, NY delayed to January.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Jan 12 in Los Angeles

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition for a writ of mandate denied Oct 22 by Cal 2nd Appellate District.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Nov 6 (motions to compel arbitration)
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Oct 19: Feshbachs still considering further appellate relief.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Second amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, awaiting verdict.

Concluded litigation:
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.


SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks

The Australian Seven News network cancelled a 10-part investigation of Scientology and its history of dirty tricks. Read the transcripts of the episodes and judge for yourself why Tom Cruise and Tommy Davis might not have wanted viewers to see this hard-hitting series by journalist Bryan Seymour.


After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and coming November 1 to Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society. Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in a weekly series. How many have you read?



[TWO years ago] Scientology hails study vindicating its rehab program — so we take a closer look
[THREE years ago] Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard as a cop in Los Angeles: What’s the real truth?
[FOUR years ago] Scientology will go after your kids with its quack ideas on drugs — even at a Christian school
[FIVE years ago] At the end of our journey, we offer thanks to this website’s supporters
[SIX years ago] Scientology outside the official church: ‘I’m quite happy with the world the way it is’
[SEVEN years ago] Clearwater Tent Showdown: Scientology Reportedly Getting Ready for Events Next Week
[EIGHT years ago] Another Scientology Victory: Photos of Marc Headley’s Roof Being Repaired!


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,105 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,609 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,129 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,149 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,040 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,347 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,215 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,989 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,793 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,109 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,675 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,594 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,762 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,343 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,604 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,642 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,355 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,880 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,410 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,961 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,110 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,430 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,285 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,404 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,760 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,063 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,169 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,571 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,443 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,026 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,521 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,775 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,884 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on October 30, 2020 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2019 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2019), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists | GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice | SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts | Shelly Miscavige, 14 years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


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