The Minds of Billy Milligan
'The Minds Of Billy Milligan
is the true story
of a man with multiple personalities
, written by Daniel Keyes
Abused since childhood
by a sadistic stepfather, Billy Milligan "went to sleep"
and created twenty-three other personalities to cope with life. Many of the personalities expressed extraordinary talents for languages, medicine, or painting, while others were petty criminals and thieves whose crimes got the others into constant brushes with the law. Still others were children incapable of dealing with adult life.
To control the chaos, three of the dominant personalities—Arthur, Ragen, and Allen—took over the major tasks, assigning each of the other personalities goals and duties based on their individual talents. Personalities who did not contribute or who were seen as threats to the stability of the whole were declared "undesirable" and banished from holding the consciousness.The Ten
- William Stanley Milligan: The original, unfused personality.
- Arthur: The Mean Brit. Intellectual, controls who gets to "take the spot".
- Ragen Vadascovinich: The Yugoslavian Papa Wolf. Has Super Strength and controls the spot while Billy is in jail.
- Allen: The Con Man. Responsible for talking himself out of whatever mess the other personalities have gotten themselves into.
- Tommy: The Escape Artist. Has a vast knowledge of technology. Sometimes mistaken for Allen.
- Danny: The Shrinking Violet who Does Not Like Men after being Buried Alive by Billy's step-father.
- David: The Empath. One of the few child personalities, his role in the "family" is to be basically a human shield.
- Christene: The Cheerful Child.
- Christopher: Christene's older brother. Plays the harmonica.
- Adalana: The affection-starved lesbian. Keeps house and writes poetry. Later turned out to be a Sympathetic Rapist.
- Philip: The thug. Has a strong Brooklyn accent.
- Kevin: The small-time criminal.
- Walter: The Australian. Fancies himself a big game hunter.
- April: The bitch. Her only ambition is to kill Billy's stepfather.
- Samuel: The Jew. The only religious personality.
- Mark: The workhorse. No initiative. Takes care of monotonous labour.
- Steve: The egomaniac. Makes fun of others with mocking imitations.
- Lee: The Class Clown. His belief that nothing is sacred gets him into trouble.
- Jason: The pressure valve. Screams and throws tantrums to let off tension.
- Robert: The daydreamer. Although he dreams of making the world a better place, he doesn't have the ambition to actually do so.
- Shawn: The deaf child. Assumed to be retarded. Makes buzzing noises to feel the vibrations in his head.
- Martin: The snob. Puts on airs and wants things without earning them.
- Timothy: Worked in a florist shop until a Depraved Homosexual made advances that frightened him. Went into his own world.
The system slowly spiraled out of control, finally shattering when "Billy" was arrested for the abduction and rape of three women. Adalana, a lesbian personality, claimed responsibility for the rapes. In a landmark decision, Milligan was found not guilty by reason of insanity, the first and only multiple ever to be found so in a felony case. Originally sentenced to a mental institution, legal arguments broke out as to whether he deserved prison for his crimes. Meanwhile, doctors frantically worked to fuse his personalities. They were temporarily successful, but when Milligan was finally moved to prison, the fusing broke apart, with the personality Ragen stepping forward to protect the children for a final time.
Milligan served his prison sentence and was eventually released. Legal and financial issues caused him to move to Japan, where he still resides. Keyes and Milligan published another book, The Milligan Tapes
, released in Japan. The Milligan Tapes
have not yet been released in the United States due to laws preventing criminals from profiting from selling the rights to their stories. A screenplay titled The Crowded Room,
based on The Minds of Billy Milligan,
has been in production since the 1990s, with such names as James Cameron
, Joel Schumacher
, and Leonardo DiCaprio
attached, but has remained in Development Hell
due to rights issues.The Minds Of Billy Milligan provides examples of:
- Abusive Parents: Chalmer is a particularly horrifying example.
- American Accents: Philip has A Brooklyn accent, and April has a Boston accent.
- Berserk Button: Anybody who dares try to hurt Christene will feel Ragen's wrath.
- British Accents: Arthur speaks in an upper-class British accent. Christopher mocks him with a Cockney accent.
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: Ragen.
- Cheerful Child: Christene.
- Depraved Homosexual: Timothy had an encounter with one.
- Escape Artist: Tommy.
- Feminine Women Can Cook: Adalana.
- Freudian Trio: Possibly,
- Arthur, the cool-headed Brit (Superego).
- Ragen, the hot-headed Papa Wolf (Id)
- Allen, the fast-talking Con Man (Ego).
- I Just Want to Be Loved: Adalana.
- Jerkass: Some of the personalities, specifically Philip, Kevin, Steve, and Martin.
- Jerk With A Heartof Gold: Tommy, who, while being antisocial, unsympathetic and has trouble controlling his temper, seems to genuinely care for the child personalities.
- Justified Criminal: Ragen regularly robs criminals in order to feed the "family". Then, of course, there was the wheelchair incident.
- Morality Pet: Christene, for Ragen.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Adalana. Ragen also has a tendency to do this.
- Papa Wolf: Ragen.
- Quintessential British Gentleman: Arthur. At one point he runs away to England, bys a bowler hat and an umbrella, and proceeds to horrify the native-born Englishmen.
- Revenge Against Men: April.
- Revenge Before Reason: April again.
- Robin Hood: On one occasion, Ragen steals a wheelchair to help a poor child.
- The Face: Allen generally does all the talking for the "family", due to his fast-talking and sharp mind.
- The Mean Brit: Arthur has a tendency to be this.
- The Spock: Arthur.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Adalana.