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Here’s the 2024 Scientology Super Bowl ad, this year’s ‘mystery sandwich’

Right at midnight on February 11, the day that the Super Bowl will take place, Scientology revealed its ad for the big game this year. And once again, it’s a mystery sandwich.

In a 1990s court case, Hana Whitfield testified that Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard had said in her presence, “To keep a person on the Scientology path, feed him a mystery sandwich.”

That’s exactly what Scientology’s Super Bowl ads are all about. You won’t learn a thing about what actually happens in a Scientology church, but you will get your inner pilgrim pandered to, grasshopper.

Since 2013, the church has bought local ad spots during the big game to show its slick ads. People in some markets see the ad during the long pre-game show and during the game itself, usually right after halftime and as the third quarter is about to begin. But it has appeared in other spots as well.

Here’s this year’s entry, titled ‘Decide for Yourself.’ This is a 60-second version, but what actually airs during the game will be 30 seconds or less…



Every day millions of people ask…What is Scientology?

Here’s an idea. What if you just take a look?

What if you see for yourself…

Who we are,

What we believe,

And what we stand for.

Our doors are open,

To all people

Of all faiths

In every corner of the world.

So what is Scientology?

Maybe it’s time to look


And decide for yourself.

It’s the same narrator as ever, the same look, the same word salad that adds up to nothing.

And it never fails. Each year, we see viewers go completely nuts over the idea that Scientology has paid to run a short pitch on their TV screens.

Anyway, we expect a lot more incredulity tonight. You’d think people would be used to it by now. Eleven years ago, for 2013’s Super Bowl, Scientology advertised during the game for the first time. Why then? Well, we agreed with Mike Rinder that it was probably a direct result of Debbie Cook asking, in court testimony in 2012, about the money that Scientologists were supposedly paying for publicity campaigns.

Cook was a top former church official and the questions she raised in a famous New Year’s 2012 email led directly to a large exodus of people leaving the church — and no doubt made Scientology leader David Miscavige sit up and take notice. She seemed to have a good point: Scientologists are under intense pressure to fork over huge amounts of money that they are told will be used to “disseminate” Scientology to the larger public. But what did they have to show for it? Where were the TV ads or other means of getting the word out? Only a few months after Cook made that complaint, Scientology aired its first ever Super Bowl ad.

And fortunately for us, the result was eleven more years of hilariously earnest TV ads that resulted in endless mocking on social media each year.

Again, for the press who makes this mistake every year, this is not a national ad spot that, this year, costs advertisers $7 million for a 30-second commercial. Scientology instead buys local advertising spots in select markets during the game. One expert told us they figure it costs the church about $1 million to do it that way. As usual, we’ll be watching Twitter to see where the ad shows this year.

In case you’ve missed them, here are the ads for the previous Super Bowls…

2013’s ad, “Knowledge”…

2014’s ad, “Scientology Spiritual Technology”…

2015’s ad, “Age of Answers”…


2016’s ad, “Who Am I”…

2017’s ad, “Your Full Potential”…

2018’s ad, “Curious?”…

2019’s ad, “Curiosity”…

2020’s ad, “It’s Time To Rediscover The Human Soul”

2021’s ad, “Be More”

2022’s ad, “We are Giants”


2023’s ad, “Live Again”


Technology Cocktail

“Very degraded beings alter-is. Degraded ones refuse to comply without mentioning it. Beings in fair condition try to comply but remark their troubles to get help when needed. Competent higher toned beings understand orders and comply if possible but mainly do their jobs without needing lots of special orders.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1967



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.


THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?


[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH

— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see

[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— The first Danny Masterson trial and beyond

[18] Trial special with Chris Shelton [19] Trial week one [20] Marc Headley on the spy in the hallway [21] Trial week two [22] Trial week three [23] Trial week four [24] Leah Remini on LAPD Corruption [25] Mike Rinder 2022 Thanksgiving Special [26] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part One [27] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part Two [28] Claire Headley on the trial [29] Tory Christman [30] Bruce Hines on spying [31] Karen de la Carriere [32] Ron Miscavige on Shelly Miscavige [33] Karen de la Carriere on the L’s [34] Mark Bunker on Miscavige hiding [35] Mark Plummer [36] Mark Ebner [37] Karen Pressley [38] Steve Cannane [39] Fredrick Brennan [40] Clarissa Adams [41] Louise Shekter [42] John Sweeney [43] Tory Christman [44] Kate Bornstein [45] Christian Stolte [46] Mark Bunker [47] Jon Atack [48] Luke Y. Thompson [49] Mark Ebner [50] Bruce Hines [51] Spanky Taylor and Karen Pressley [51] Geoff and Robbie Levin [52] Sands Hall [53] Jonny Jacobsen [54] Sandy Holeman


Source Code

“That’s a trick I learned from Commander Thompson, by the way. He used to train cats. It’s almost impossible to train a house cat — I mean really train a house cat into doing all sorts of dog tricks and so forth. He used to be able to do that, and he taught me how to train cats when I was a kid. He would wait for the cat to do something and then he’d reward it. And if you don’t think that requires patience! You’re going to wait for this cat to do something that’s going to be totally accidental, and then you’re going to approve of it. Wow! Oh, you can just burn up hours and hours and hours trying to train a cat.” — L. Ron Hubbard, February 11, 1957


Avast, Ye Mateys

“TIME MACHINE ORDERS: I issue a lot of TM orders and queries. Very many of them are routed straight back to me. Those who don’t know what dreadful things happen to their Ethics Files if the TM doesn’t know they have answered the order or query should find out very fast as some Ethics Files must be getting very fat indeed. Those who think they know should check up on it. The PL to refer to is in Vol 0 of the OEC Book.” — LRH Pers Comm, February 11, 1971



Overheard in the FreeZone

“When I was inside the ship and talking to a gray in telepathy, my body was not there, only me. Therefore there is nothing physical that can create sound, or hear sound. A spirit being normally communicates with radio frequencies, so from my experience it was like this entity was literally putting the sound in me. It is much different than hearing sound. So this would be an OT ability.”


Past is Prologue

2002: A letter from the Republic of Germany to the U.S. State Department, posted to a.r.s this week, announced Germany’s intention to instruct Ursula Caberta, head of the Scientology task force in Hamburg, not to respond to a lawsuit filed against her by Scientology in Tampa, Florida. “The subject of the complaint is devoted entirely to the activities of Mrs. Caberta or her staff in Germany in their official capacities as staff of the Senate of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg. Based on the fact that the complaint may only be validly directed to the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, the Federal Republic of Germany, representing the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg in accordance with international law, invokes state immunity and requests immediate withdrawal of the complaint. A court in the United States does not have jurisdiction in the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg in the Federal Republic of Germany, and is not in the position to institute court proceedings there. Die Welt reported on February 16th that a retired Scotland Yard officer spoke to a German business association to praise the drug rehab programs of Scientology. The guests of Henry Randmark, President of the American German Business Club Hamburg e.V., had to wait a matter of minutes before the event officially began. But the wait in the cold was made up for by the a presentation by a retired police superintendent of Scotland Yard about drug crime and rehabilitation, as well as by a buffet. The audience listened to the presentation in amazement as Brightmore glowingly praised the rehabilitation methods of the Scientology cult. People present included US General Consul Susan Elbow and Patron Prince Ferdinand von Bismarck.”


Random Howdy

“I think Tony is taking the day off and that’s just fine by me. Watch some football or somethin’ everybody.”


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


Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Found guilty on two counts on May 31, remanded to custody. Sentenced to 30 years to life on Sep 7.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Next pretrial hearing January 29, 2024.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, motion to strike/anti-SLAPP motions by Scientology to be heard January 9, 2024.
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Forced to arbitration. Plaintiffs allowed interlocutory appeal to Eleventh Circuit.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Discovery phase.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Scientology moves for religious arbitration.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Ordered to mediation.



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 now on Netflix.


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

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. 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?


[ONE year ago] Something big is happening with Scientology in Chicago today: But will Dave be there?
[TWO years ago] Ned McCrink, 1954-2022: The OC Ideal Org’s biggest donor sailed away from Scientology
[THREE years ago] Gretchen Carlson slams Danny Masterson and Scientology ‘arbitration’ to Congress
[FOUR years ago] Another drone’s eye view of the compound where Scientology is keeping Shelly Miscavige
[FIVE years ago] Untouchable? Scientology’s 60-year plan to protect itself from the law
[SIX years ago] Scientology targets the Red Cross in its latest sneaky front group scheme
[SEVEN years ago] What happens when Scientology helps you reach ‘your full potential’
[EIGHT years ago] The disgraced sheriff, the Holocaust survivor, and Scientology’s most unhinged front group
[NINE years ago] These are the superpowers Scientologists are paying big bucks to attain
[TEN years ago] It’s time to wake up our space cooties on Scientology’s New Operating Thetan Level Five!


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Tammy Synovec has not seen her daughter Julia in 2,807 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 3,302 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,817 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,367 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,357 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,238 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,542 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,413 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,965 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,306 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,873 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,792 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,960 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,541 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,802 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,838 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,554 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,118 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,433 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,608 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,159 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,290 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,628 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,483 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,602 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,958 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,261 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,367 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,765 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,641 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,206 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,719 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,973 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,082 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on February 11, 2024 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, 1995-2022 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2022), 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, 15 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


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


Tony Ortega at Rolling Stone


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