Yesterday, we alerted you to our investigation into Brian Wilson's strange relationship with someone called The Machine. We have since received many leads about the identity of the Machine and just what it all means.
Here is one thing we did not learn:
The Machine is a joke based on the character in 8mm that goes by the same name. We didn't learn this because we already knew this. We put a clip from 8mm in the video. But thanks to everyone who emailed a plot summary of the film.
And here are some things The Machine is most likely not:
The Machine is not a tribute to this old Yeah Yeah Yeahs EP track. Then again, that song could be an homage to 8mm...
The Machine is in no way connected to Brian Wilson's post-save crossed-arms gesture. According to this guy, "It is apparently an odd mixture of something about his christian religiousness, something about his late father, and something about a brand of clothing."
The Machine is probably not connected to defunct San Francisco metal band Savage Machiine. The belief that he is based primarily on the egregious misspelling of Machine as Machiine.
The Machine is most likely not related to '80s wrestler Ax of the WWF tag-team Demolition. Despite all this evidence furnished by reader Adam:
An anonymous reader sent a picture of Jason and said that he was 95 percent sure that he was The Machine. However, he doesn't seem to have the same type of frame as The Machine we saw pass behind Wilson during his Cheap Seats segment. (See the above pic.)
The Machine is probably Pat Burrell. Several readers emailed in claiming that Pat Burrell was The Machine. It's the most likely theory we've received. Burrell signed with the Giants at the end of May. His nickname with the Phillies was "The Machine," and a popular line of t-shirts featured a picture of Burrell with the tagline "Man or Machine?" A reader told us: "I've heard from pretty reliable sources that Pat Burrell dresses up as The Machine, in full gimp decorum before games," and hearsay is better than nothing in a situation like this. Additionally, according to the After Elton comments section, Burrell and Wilson are currently roommates. This last bit of information, along with The Machine's Burrell-y build, leads us to believe that they are in fact one in the same. Until more information comes to our attention, we think it is pretty safe to say Burrell is the Machine, and the Machine is Burrell. This guy agrees.
Is this the end of The Machine investigation? Only time, or more appearances from The Machine, will tell.
UPDATE: Pat Burell confirmed as The Machine [The Fightins]