Harry S. Robins, known as "Hal", is a voice artist and screen writer. Robins is best known for his vocal work in the Half-Life series of computer games. He is also a prominent member of the Church of the SubGenius as Dr. Howland Owll. In that persona he voiced the narrator in Arise! The SubGenius Video and made brief appearances in Grass. His official title within the church is "Keeper of Church Secrets".
He can be heard on KPFA on a show called 'Puzzling Evidence' that started back in 1982. His description of the radio show:
- "Deranged “edits” segue into a cascade of echoing glossolaliac madness, the voicing of lyric ruminations from the free-falling brains of disintegrating personalities. And some people, demented individuals, obsessively record every word and squealing sound effect. Of course, you may just hate it."
Film and television
He appeared on a television show, The Conspiracy Zone, for two seasons in 2002, on now-defunct TNN, in which he was the announcer and made several on-camera appearances. He also appeared as one of several underground comic experts in the documentary film, God's Cartoonist: The Comic Crusade of Jack Chick.
Literature and comic books
Robins has been a comic book artist and cartoonist, appearing in R. Crumb's Weirdo magazine and various comic books, including Legal Action Comics II and Alien Apocalypse 2006. Many of his horror comics were anthologized in Grave Yarns. He also wrote and illustrated The Meaning of Lost and Mismatched Socks published by Frog, Ltd. (a division of North Atlantic Books), which will also publish the forthcoming (Fall 2006) Dinosaur Alphabet. His work also appears in popular trading card sets, including Dinosaurs Attack by Topps, and Tune In For Terror from Monsterwax Trading Cards.
The Church of the SubGenius
As Dr. Howland Owll, Robins contributed to The Book of the SubGenius and Revelation X: the "Bob" Apocryphon. His short story "The Smoker from the Shadows", which was nominated for an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America, appears in the anthology Three-Fisted Tales of "Bob". He also contributed to the SubGenius comic book, "Bob's" Favorite Comics (a rarity, of which most copies were burned in a warehouse fire). In addition, Robins' work appears in the 2006 SubGenius book, Psychlopaedia of Slack: The Bobliographon.