One of the first projects The Beatles worked on after their manager Brian Epstein died was the TV film Magical Mystery Tour. It depicts the beatles on a caravan trip around England with a cast of eccentric characters, and they just kind of randomly do stuff. It's pretty stream of consciousness and not terribly good. The album, however, has great music on it.
Initially released as a double EP in England, it was expanded to a full album in the U.S., and it included songs from previously released singles that hadn't been included on an album yet. One of the new songs from the movie was the song I Am The Walrus. It's full of psychedelic Lewis Carroll inspired lyrics, many of which seem to make no sense.
One of the clues that people often point to is that some cultures believe a walrus is a symbol of death, though those cultures have no been identified. John sings I Am The Walrus, but on the jacket for the album the song titles is followed by the words "No You're Not!"
If John isn't the walrus, then who is? Could the Walrus death symbol indicate Paul?
During the performance of I Am The Walrus in the film, the band is decked out in their psychedelic finest, including a hand decorated drum head.
The drum head presents another message to their fans: Love 3 The Beatles. Are they letting their fans know that Paul died and that there are only three original members left?
At the end of the song we hear strange voices that appear to be from a Shakespeare play. They say things like "Oh untimely death" and "is he dead?" The band said they randomly pulled in a BBC performance of Shakespeare into the recording, and that it just happened that way. Pretty weird coincidence to have death related lines pop up at that point, huh?
The booklet included with the EP and LP features even more photographic clues. In one photo we see "Paul" seated at a desk. In front of him is a sign that says "I Was". Does that mean Paul WAS alive at one time?
Elsewhere, John is seen walking past a sign that says "The best way to go is by M&D". This allegedly refers to the mortuary that dealt with Paul's body after the car accident.
There's also a photo of a big banquet scene. If you turn it on its side and squint, the scene appears to depict a skull.
Yikes! We also see The Beatles dancing during the Your Mother Should Know sequence. Notice that three of the band members have red flowers on their lapels, but Paul has a black flower. Black is traditionally the color of mourning, so are we supposed to be mourning for Paul?
There's one last clue to be found on the packaging for the album/EP. If you hold the jacket up to the mirror and look at The Beatles' name you're supposed to see a phone number, and if you call the number you are supposed to be able to find out the answer about what happened to Paul. DON'T CALL THE NUMBER, THOUGH! You might end up bugging someone that happens to have the same number. What does that look like, though... 231-7438 maybe?
Clearly, The Beatles were trying to tell their fans something. Could it get anymore clear? Maybe if they put some backwards messages in their music? That takes us to The White Album...