|Type||Religion / Commercial|
|Headquarters||Ivywood Hills, Pacific Bay, U.S.|
|Enemies||Pacific Bay Police Department|
|Appearance(s)||Criminal Case (s2):|
The Young and the Lifeless (first member )
Wild Wild Death (first identified)
Dead Carpet (last )
The Utopian Cult is a religious movement featured in the second season of Criminal Case. The cult emerged in the storyline during the events of Wild Wild Death, gradually causing mayhem for the Pacific Bay Police as the story progressed, until it was finally put to an end in Dead Carpet.
Headquartered in Pacific Bay's Ivywood Hills, the Utopian Cult is a now-dissolved malevolent religion often referred to as an infamous cult in Ivywood. The cult promised eternal life and endless fame for a fee, as a result of which it became increasingly popular among celebrities.
The Utopians were not to be trifled with as they could do just about anything for their own benefit. They would discourage their own members to question their actions as doubting their orders and being too inquisitive was something intolerable from the cult's perspective. Moreover, it became clear later in the story that the Utopians would not take kindly to members who wanted to leave them, as intimidation was not their only resort to ensure that a member did not leave the cult under any circumstances.
Theories claimed that the Utopians practically controlled Ivywood, not to mention the fact that they would frequently apply a sadistic brainwashing scheme to achieve what was best for business.
Events of Criminal Case
Following the closure of movie producer Horace Foster's murder investigation, Russell Crane deduced that an infamous cult known as the Utopians were liable for Gaston Dumas's brainwashing in the previous case and thus wanted to conduct an inquiry about their activities. Chief Marquez, however, ordered the team of Frank Knight and the player to inquire into Horace's mansion for a possible break-in before all.
A thorough investigation in Horace's estate suggested that the thief committed the break-in only to leave a cryptic card inside with the text, "To the one who has betrayed us. May all the Stars judge his soul. For they'll watch over us until the Planet is cleansed of the darkness." Thanks to Russell's expertise, Frank and the player discovered that the one liable for the break-in was Brett Nolan, the lead actor of Horace's last film project The Ornery Die Last and a Utopian who—with the help of the card—evidently wanted to make sure the stars would not allow Horace's soul to come back since the movie producer had allegedly betrayed the cult.
Brett was not very happy with having his card taken away from Horace's mansion, but dropped a bomb when he revealed that Russell was raised as a fellow Utopian but had "betrayed" the cult—driving the police team to a state of darkness.
Back in the police station, Russell was infuriated after being informed by Frank about what Brett bubbled out to him and the player during the conversation earlier on. Things would only get worse for the profiler when his father, zealous Utopian Jupiter Crane, made an unexpected appearance, requiring the player to search for a contract he made with Abitbol & Sons Studios to rewrite the script for Horace's The Ornery Die Last. Despite not being very fond of his father, Russell agreed to accompany the player in returning the restored contract to Leo Brooks—the accountant responsible for writing a contract for Jupiter. During a short conversation, Leo informed Russell about the Utopians practically controlling Ivywood—making the profiler mentally unstable by the minute because of his despise for their hostility, which was the main reason as to why he left the cult.
Russell went back to the police station to lambaste his father for manipulating the player, to which Jupiter responded that the Utopians only wanted to erase their trace of involvement in Horace's film project in order to avert being hit with a murder scandal, but Russell went off-topic by bubbling out that Jupiter let the Utopians ruin his childhood—suggesting that the profiler was now consumed with vengeance. Russell firmly believed his father was hiding something from him, thus making a promise that he would expose the Utopians' true identity no matter the cost.
In the aftermath of socialite Lindsay Bannister's murder investigation, Russell was asked by Chief Marquez to follow the player in investigating film star Dick Shakespeare's strange behavior. The investigation led Russell and the player to come across a brainwashed Dick and then his journal, which would confirm the profiler's suspicions of the Utopians brainwashing other people, although he felt that this was not enough evidence to bring the cult to justice. Russell then had to question Hubert Bannister about the cult's brainwashing scheme, but Hubert, as a loyal Utopian, refused to answer honestly.
Meanwhile, Frank helped retrieve a stolen rare diamond with the help of private detective Eduardo Ramirez. This led to the arrest of a self-proclaimed European Count and a femme fatale, both fellow Utopians; the latter, however, was later released on bail thanks to Hubert, her husband.
All Russell now needed was more evidence to prove the Utopians guilty of a brainwashing scheme in order to shut them down for good.
Rex Logan—a famous actor and vocal Utopian—was found melted to death with acid on the set of Warzone Pacific, a sci-fi movie which was supposed to star the victim if it was not for the unexpected turn of events. The team of Amy Young and the player commenced a murder investigation as they eventually incriminated the killer to be Daniel Lambert, the co-star of Warzone Pacific and a fellow Utopian.
During his statement, Daniel expressed how Rex was untalented and was not fit to star in any film project, continuing that Rex abused his Utopian faith to get the lead role for Warzone Pacific, which prompted the co-star to label the victim as a traitor to the Utopians. In addition, he wanted Rex gone so that he could have some time to shine in Ivywood, not to mention that he wanted to make the Utopians proud. Furthermore, Daniel felt that the victim was not well-synchronized with the cult's faith. So, to fool the player, he stole a bottle of acid from the prop room, threw it at Rex when he and the victim were alone on the set, and configured the corpse to resemble the Utopian statuette of "Adel"—a legendary Utopian figure who, according to a Utopian mythology, was accused of betraying his brothers and breaking the teachings of the cult's faith. Daniel thus fled the scene, hoping that the acid would destroy the evidence.
As the statement came to an end, Daniel was taken to trial, where he was issued a 30-year jail sentence for grand homicide.
|The threat letter addressed to Susan (left).|
Susan after being brainwashed (right).
Hours following the indictment, an anonymous threat letter addressed to actress Susan Blair was found. After tedious hours of analysis, Russell deduced that the letter was sent to Susan by none other than the Utopians (the profiler had received a similar letter for leaving the cult years ago), in spite of the actress being a recent member of the cult. This prompted Russell and the player to rush to Susan only to find her brainwashed; this marked the third time someone was found brainwashed in the exact manner. The actress was evidently brainwashed by the Utopians to ensure she would not leave the cult under any circumstances.
Furthermore, Lucy Armstrong—a costume designer and fellow Utopian—was caught in the middle of the cult's plans to prepare for the upcoming annual Ivywood Film Awards. Russell was thus forced to quiz his own father about this subject. Thanks to Jupiter's "involuntary help", the profiler managed to find a flyer of the Awards ceremony at the nearby drive-in theater; the player unraveled the scribbled part of the flyer to be a brainwash order intended to take place at 8 p.m. at the Ivywood Awards, also bearing a note to have a certain gossip columnist replace Rex as the ceremony's host. Therefore, the duo did not hesitate to quiz the columnist, who also happened to be an enthusiastic Utopian, but could not get the vital piece of information they yearned for.
The findings made Amy nervous as the year's Ivywood Film Awards was rapidly approaching, and prompted Russell to make a promise that he would get to the bottom of the cult's brainwashing fiasco and stop it at all costs.
Hours after the indictment of an actor and a fellow Utopian, the Utopians found themselves on thin ice.
It all started when Russell was reported missing by the Chief. All Hannah Choi knew was that Russell had gone to investigate the Colosseum set of Margaret Hatchman's unfinished epic film Legacy, grounds for Amy and the player to find out whether or not the profiler was abducted. Chief Marquez's fears came true as the team found Russell held hostage by a lion tamer and Utopian member named Brad Belinsky, who threatened to kill Russell unless the police allowed him and the profiler entrance to the symphony room. Amy correctly assumed that Brad was brainwashed (by none other than the Utopians) to kill Russell, but the profiler pleaded with Brad to release him so that Amy and the player could escort the lion tamer to the symphony room themselves. Russell was attacked by Brad during his investigation, but remained unscathed after his rescue.
Afterwards, Amy and the player opted to investigate the symphony room on behalf of Russell, who returned to the station after his kidnap. The player found a locked briefcase, unlocking it to find a paper containing a brainwashing plan using ELFs (extremely low frequencies). Both Amy and the player could not understand as to why the Utopians would use ELFs to brainwash people, so they gave the evidence to Russell for examination.
After tedious hours of analysis, Russell made a major finding. The fine-tuned ELFs came from the television antenna and were intended to be used to brainwash people. The profiler also suggested that human brains could be wiped clean and reprogrammed with those frequencies. Extremely low frequencies are waves that cannot be heard, but can be felt. The plan was patented by the Utopians and they had a plausible reason to take Russell to the symphony room for fine-tuning of the ELFs to brainwash people with a certain movie that would air during the upcoming Ivywood Film Awards ceremony.
Since a music composer named Hannah Simmer was the Utopian with perfect hearing, she was liable for much of the brainwashing scheme with a single document alone.
Accordingly, Amy and the player placed Hannah under arrest for the kidnapping of Russell and for the brainwashing conspiracy with the Utopians. The music composer knew that her leader pleaded with her not to fight, so she warned the police that the Utopians perfected the brainwashing process, citing that the Utopians would fulfill a prophecy kept secret by the cult. After the composer's arrest, Russell could not help but worry about the Ivywood Awards a step further due to the shocking revelation about the Utopians' brainwashing scheme. Russell also showed fear for the lives of those who would be watching the ceremony on live television, knowing that the only way to stop the brainwashing for good would be to bring forth the infamous cult's leader to justice before all.
|Maggie (left) and Chief Marquez (right) in their|
Following the indictment of Lizzie Dion, Chief Marquez—after giving a thought to the revelation from the previous case—attempted to have the upcoming Ivywood Film Awards canceled as a precaution to prevent the notorious Utopians from brainwashing millions of viewers watching the ceremony. Russell opted to interrogate his father about the identity of the cult's leader (and eventually put him in temporary custody due to suspicion) while Frank decided to check up on the set of a big-budget film for any clues leading to the same direction.
Soon after, things would turn upside down for the police: Maggie O'Mally was found brainwashed, and just moments later, the trio of Frank, Russell, and the player assembled in the station only to discover Chief Marquez in a brainwashed state. Frank immediately suggested the player to partner up with Russell and find the one liable for this shocking turn of events while he guarded the helpless Chief.
|The implicating evidence.|
With the player's field expertise and Russell's psychological skills, the individual responsible for the brainwashing of six people (including Maggie and the Chief)—and also for the planning of a terrorist attack scheduled to take place at the Ivywood Awards—turned out to be none other than Holly Hopper, a familiar Utopian and gossip columnist.
After being cornered by Russell and the player, Holly, in a rather quick and suspicious manner, admitted her brainwashing fiasco before taking a moment to claim that she had succeeded to her predecessor as the Utopian leader seven years prior to the present day. However, she would not let the police take the cult down without a fight: the self-proclaimed leader of the Utopians then "shot herself to death" in a bold attempt to resist arrest and to protect her cult, taking her brainwashing secrets to the grave.
Moments after the disastrous event, Russell insisted that the player keep an eye on the imminent Ivywood Awards ceremony just in case the Utopians still had something in mind—though he would find a cure to heal Chief Marquez from the brainwashing effects in due course.
With the Ivywood Film Awards scheduled to get under way in just a few hours, the notorious Utopians—even without Holly in the picture—were ready to implement their devilish scheme: to recruit new followers and fulfill the "Prophecy" through a brainwashing attack intended to affect millions of viewers watching the ceremony's live broadcast, by simply replacing the original tape with that of a certain brainwashing film.
Hours before the ceremony, however, movie producer Tyler Snakes was found dead at the entrance of the Awards Theater, looking as if he suffocated to death. Ironically, Tyler was a Utopian as well as the person in charge of supervising the Awards ceremony, and given that no human being would just drop dead like that, the inquiring team of Amy and the player immediately shipped Tyler's corpse to coroner Roxie Sparks for autopsy. Shortly afterward, the duo had to subdue the television room of the Awards Theater which the Utopians had supposedly reserved to execute their brainwashing attack. Also, with the help of Hannah, the location of the Utopian temple was exposed for investigation.
As the investigation progressed, Hannah managed to retrieve a text message—not to mention a call—sent by Holly to Tyler just moments before his death, thereby deducing that Holly's suicide was nothing more than an act. Hannah would also intercept Holly's call on the victim's phone from the Ivywood Heights Hotel, only to find the gossip columnist dressed up as a socialite to keep a low profile. The cover did not work very well as Amy and the player were wise enough to expose Holly right on the spot before sending her to the interrogation room at once, where the columnist disclosed that she had to lay low for a while and that all it took to make sure that happened were some special effects to stage her suicide (which consisted of a good make-up artist, and two friends disguised as paramedics).
In the middle of the case, Amy was unexpectedly found in a brainwashed state, forcing Russell to take over her place for the remainder of the investigation. Russell proved his determination by eventually helping the player find the weapon used to off Tyler: a poisoned cigarette.
Soon enough, in spite of the twists and turns, the police force had to deal with during the investigation, Tyler's killer was incriminated to be a femme fatale and fellow Utopian named Velma Bannister.
During the moment of her arrest, Velma offered a smoke to the player as a condition to have her rights read while she waited for her husband's lawyers to arrive. In a smart move, Russell then asked the femme fatale to refrain from smoking—especially with poisoned cigarettes, like the ones she had given to Tyler. Velma then proceeded to state that the police had nothing against her—but Russell continued his manipulative demeanor, pointing out that everyone admired Velma's persistence, unlike Tyler, who had the guts to reject her and bruise her ego immensely. This striking insult by the profiler pushed Velma to the limit, causing her to finally admit that she was indeed responsible for Tyler's death—though her actual motive was to gain access to the TV room of the Awards Theater.
Velma believed she could "save" Ivywood from the Utopians' brainwashing plan even though she knew this would contradict what her cult desired: she wanted to use her own recording instead of the intended one the Utopians wanted. However, Tyler was in charge of broadcasting the Awards ceremony and Velma needed access to the TV room by any means necessary in order to replace the Utopians' tape with hers, leaving her with no choice but to take him out of her way. As the statement came to an end, Russell and the player shipped the femme fatale to trial.
In court Velma cited the fact that she had to use her charm all her life to seduce people to get what she wanted, and the older she became, the more difficult it got, as she believed that there was always going to be someone younger and more beautiful than herself, with Tyler making her realize that her powers were slowly fading with age. However, Velma refused to be uglier than someone else, so she ultimately decided to take the Utopians' brainwashing plan to her own hands by poisoning Tyler to death, replacing the Utopian-standard brainwashing tape with a brainwashing tape of her own so that people would have to obey her and also worship her as the most beautiful woman in Ivywood—and to love her forever. Fame was what Velma yearned for, although she knew that the brainwashing effect could be nullified by a cure and that her fame would not last forever. Hearing enough, Judge Dante finally sentenced the femme fatale to 18 years of hard time for the premeditated murder of Tyler Snakes, not to mention forcing the Judge and the court members to miss out on the Awards ceremony.
Following the indictment, Russell and the player had to interrogate psychiatrist Trevor Neuman, a Utopian who was liable for inventing the brainwashing method for the cult. Trevor admitted that he created the brainwashing technique, but felt that there was no way to reverse its effects, which Russell refused to accept. So the player had Trevor arrested for being a part of the illicit scheme prior to checking the TV room for the brainwashing tape. The player succeeded in finding the tape and Hannah had to give her all to deliver the psychological cure, thus healing Chief Marquez and Amy (not to mention Frank and Roxie who had unknowingly watched the accidental airing of the brainwashing tape) by fluke and luck. Hannah would also make sure the cure get aired on all the channels worldwide, in an effort to save each person—including Jupiter—under the effects of the brainwashing.
With Ivywood psychologically cured, Holly was arrested for good. Furthermore, Chief Marquez praised the player's skills before the Utopian temple was checked for one final time in order to ensure no additional threats ensued. Luckily, there were no more threats. Meanwhile, Russell and his father finally settled their differences after all the years of separation and hatred. The Chief was also impressed by the player's leadership in her absence (per Amy's reports), so as a reward, she opted to transfer her entire team to the district of Rhine Canyon.
- The cult is most likely based on Scientology, a real-life religious movement created by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard.
|Organizations in Criminal Case|