What better place to start than with the oldest of all "dead celebrity replaced by impostor" conspiracies. This one initially started circulating in 1967, when it was rumored that Paul McCartney was killed in a car accident involving his Aston Martin. A few months later, The Beatles fanzine assured the world that the story was false and everything went back to normal ... for two years.
The story came roaring back to life in 1969, when a student writing for the college newspaper at Drake University in Iowa (of course) published an article with the provocative headline "Is Beatle Paul McCartney Dead?" That was followed a few months later by another article, this time from the University of Michigan newspaper (again, as you'd expect), which reported on a litany of supposed clues and hints on Beatles albums that seemed to imply that Paul really was dead.
Here are a few highlights:
- In the final section of "Strawberry Fields," John says, "I buried Paul."
- The way the individual band members are arranged on the Abbey Road album cover is meant to represent a funeral procession, with Paul playing the role of the deceased.
You totally see it, right?