‘Have You Seen The News? He Was Right About Everything’: Reddit’s Conspiracy Community Mourns Dale Gribble Voice Actor Johnny Hardwick

One of the internet’s largest skeptic forums mourns the loss of their unofficial figurehead
‘Have You Seen The News? He Was Right About Everything’: Reddit’s Conspiracy Community Mourns Dale Gribble Voice Actor Johnny Hardwick

Yesterday morning, it was reported that Johnny Hardwick, comedian, writer and actor most famous for playing Dale Gribble on King of the Hill, passed away in his Texas home at 64 — or so they want you to think.

In all animated sitcom history, few characters are as synonymous with the bunker-building, tinfoil hat-wearing, pocket-sand throwing community of conspiracy theorists than Hank Hill's endlessly argumentative yet touchingly tender neighbor. Dale didn’t trust any government or media entity further than he could throw sand into their eyes, but he trusted and loved his friends and family deeply — and no one loved Dale more than the real-life skeptical exterminators and libertarian bounty hunters who saw themselves reflected on the lenses of his aviators. 

In a post mournfully titled, “We Lost a Compatriot,” Reddit’s /r/conspiracy community eulogized Hardwick and his most famous character. When the government finally releases images of those aliens we know they’re hiding from us, we hope they look a little bit like Joseph. 

“Pouring out some pocket sand tonight because we lost a real one,” the top commenter proclaimed to the Venn diagram intersection of conspiracy enthusiasts and King of the Hill fans, which looks suspiciously like a circle. “RIP Mr. Shackleford,” another soon added.

The original poster explained his grief in his submission statement, writing, “Dale may have been a parody, but he was our representation in popular media. Let’s take a moment and reflect on how Dale opened a younger generations eyes to conspiracy.” However, someone who definitely isn’t a CIA plant cracked, “Unironically identifying with Dale Gribble is so f-ing funny man, lmao.”

Many users echoed OP’s sentiment that the character was their entryway into the world of chemtrails and NASA cover-ups, with one noting, “I’ve had so many awesome memories of this show. Dale made me the conspiracy nut I am today.” 

“Decent and well-crafted humor is indicative of truth, and it’s this strange relationship that we all instinctively understand. … Perhaps if this world wisens up, we could all laugh together just how ridiculous these globalists, cabalists, whatever title they are referred to, was all just a giant glaring joke of a stain on humanity,” one particularly loquacious skeptic said of Dale’s (and Hardwick’s) impact on the world. “RIP, thank you for nurturing critical thinking people through humor, in a world desperate to oppress or ignore that very inquisitiveness.”

One user was confused at the community’s conflation of Hardwick to the character he developed and played, asking, “He was a voice actor. What do we know about his true opinions?” To which another replied, “Ya we get it. But he’s the actor who gave us a voice.”

Another succinctly summarized, “Global warming is a hoax.”

Scroll down for the next article
Forgot Password?