Bob Rebadow

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Robert Rebadow is a fictional character from the television series Oz, a drama series on HBO that portrays a maximum security prison and follows the lives of the inmates in the prison. He is portrayed by George Morfogen (and Elyas Khan in flashback scenes of his first murder and failed execution).[1]

Character overview[edit]

Prisoner 65R814. Convicted September 9, 1965 - Murder in the first degree. Sentence: Death. Commuted to life.

Bob Rebadow is one of the oldest inmates on the show and a prominent member of "The Others", the group in Oz which generally stays away from trouble and gang related warfare. His age as well as experience in Oz makes his interactions with several other inmates dynamic; some see him as a mentor, others a survivor, and a few a vulnerable old man.

Rebadow was a young architect sometime in the mid-1960s. With a child on the way, he was planning a large-scale architectural project. Rebadow committed his crime at a business lunch where he was displaying his blueprints to his business partner who laughs and mocks his designs. Enraged, Rebadow stabs his partner in the neck with his salad fork, killing him. In spite of the abrupt nature of the crime, Rebadow was still convicted of premeditated murder and sentenced to death in the electric chair. During Rebadow's execution, there was a power surge (attributed to the Great Northeast Blackout of 1965); the execution was botched and Rebadow was admitted to the medical unit for the injuries he sustained during the botched electrocution. During his stay, the death penalty was abolished and his sentence was commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Following Rebadow's release back into general population, he began claiming that he now received regular visits from God. Although written off as insane, Rebadow now possesses a certain mystic knowledge about everything going on in Oz, and in some instances even knows private details about prisoners' lives of which he had no prior knowledge.

In episode 2 of season 5, in a conversation with Miguel Alvarez, Rebadow makes references to his past, explaining the differences between his and later generations, during which he alludes to growing up when "18 year olds went off to war" and being scared as "landing craft hit the beach," perhaps alluding to his own military service.

Rebadow is one of only five regular Oz inmates to survive the entire run of the show. The other four are Miguel Alvarez, Ryan O'Reily, Tobias Beecher and Arnold "Poet" Jackson. He is also notably one of two prominently featured inmates to have been in Oz prior to the opening of Emerald City, and survive the entire run of the show, the other being Arnold "Poet" Jackson.

Season 1[edit]

In season 1, Rebadow is one of the 50 inmates let into Emerald City, an experimental cell block in the Oswald Prison. Rebadow spends his time listening to what "God" has told him and seems to know all of the events occurring in Oz ambiguously proving his supposed theory on what God has told him. Rebadow knows so much that the COs threaten him over his knowledge about the frame-up of inmate Jefferson Keane. Later Rebadow is attacked by young inmate Kenny Wangler, a move that angers Unit Manager Tim McManus. When a riot led by Muslim inmate Kareem Said breaks out, Rebadow stays low avoiding the COs wrath in the recapturing of Em City.

Season 2[edit]

As the inmates are moved to Gen Pop, Rebadow rooms with Tobias Beecher in James Robson's cell as Alvah Case investigates the riot aftermath. When Em City is reopened, Bob and three other inmates form the group "The Others" as designated by Tim McManus. While in Em City, Rebadow becomes cell mates with Agamemnon Busmalis and the two form a friendship, possibly because they are both much older than the typical Oz inmate. Busmalis is known for digging tunnels and begins to dig in their cell. Rebadow also receives news that his grandson Alex Jr. is dying from leukemia and his dying wish is to visit Disneyland. At the suggestion of Biker inmate Jaz Hoyt almost every inmate group donates to send Alex Jr. to his destination- to the point that Rebadow's family can afford to send him. However, despite the enormous generosity of the inmates and staff, Rebadow admits to McManus that he is ashamed of where the money came from and requests that the donation to his grandson remain anonymous. Later two Aryans find out about the tunnel and take the cell from Rebadow and Busmalis courtesy of CO Karl Metzger. Under Rebadow's orders, the tunnel collapses and kills the two escaping Aryans and Busmalis and Rebadow get off as McManus deems them as being threatened and non-violent, unable to maliciously cause harm to the bullying younger inmates.

Season 3[edit]

Rebadow generally lies low in this season, watching while Vernon Schllinger taunts Busmalis on for a while, making Busmalis eat the food Schlinger spits in. However, his health starts to catch up with him as he passes out in the cafeteria and wakes up to find out he has diabetes. Now, fearing his own mortality, he finally gets over his shame and requests a visit from his son and grandson, both of whom he had never seen before (and kept a lie with his mother that he was dead, rather than telling his family he was imprisoned all this time). As a sign of love and appreciation, Alex Jr. gives him the hat he wore at SeaWorld, the trip in which Rebadow raised the money to send him to.

Season 4[edit]

In season 4 Rebadow reluctantly enters into an alliance with new Latino inmate Enrique Morales and, under Morales's orders, murders Latino head Raoul "El Cid" Hernandez. Instead of feeling remorse as he expected, the murder makes Rebadow feel "alive". In exchange for the murder, Rebadow asks that Morales grant him the authority to commit another murder. Morales, confused by Rebadow's request, has no need for the offer but agrees to give Rebadow protection. That day during lunch, Rebadow has visions of machine-gunning the entire populace of Oz to death; later that night, Rebadow attempts to murder his cell mate Busmalis. In the aftermath of the attempted murder, a physical exam of Rebadow revealed a brain tumor affecting the region of the brain which controls aggression. Once removed, Rebadow returned to his old self.

Season 5[edit]

Alex Jr.'s condition gets worse, and his only hope is a bone marrow transplant. Due to a unique genetic makeup finding a suitable donor is very expensive, but Rebadow receives another communication from God telling him the winning numbers in an upcoming Mightyball lottery drawing. He asks Dave Brass, a guard recently back at work after a crippling injury, to buy a ticket for him. Brass does, but when the winning numbers come true he disappears, keeping the money for himself. Not giving up, Rebadow asks McManus to search the prison population for a donor and one is found, but he refuses to go through with the operation. At his wit's end, Rebadow tries to arrange for a faith healer to visit Alex, but his family won't allow it. After a brief power outage, Alex's life support fails and he dies. Rebadow bitterly comments that the power to the chair that was going to kill him finally came back on, except his grandson was sitting in it, due to the years that have passed.

Season 6[edit]

Depressed about his grandson's death, and at the suggestion of Busmalis, Rebadow asks McManus to transfer his job from the dress shop to the library. McManus accepts and transfers Rebadow to the prison library. The new librarian, Stella Coffo, believes that reading can change anyone's life for the better. Rebadow quickly begins to fall in love with her due to their mutual maturity and passion for literature. With an optimistic look on life, he convinces Busmalis to get back together with Norma Clark. His optimism soon turns sour when he discovers that Stella has breast cancer and feels that he is being robbed of a second chance at happiness. At the end of Season Six, he is relieved that Stella's breast cancer operation was a success leaving the series open to possibility of a romance between them.

Murders committed[edit]

  • Norton Pratt - A real estate developer stabbed in the neck with a meat fork in 1965 over dinner for criticizing Rebadow's architectural designs. Rebadow was sentenced to death. During his execution, there was a power outage. Rebadow's sentence was commuted to life in prison. Pratt's name was revealed when he had a convocation with Agamemnon Busmalis.
  • Raoul "El Cid" Hernandez - Stabbed in the neck. Rebadow made it look like self-defence, on order from Enrique Morales.


  1. "Elyas Khan as Young Bob Rebadow in HBO Series Oz".

External links[edit]

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