Subliminal Tattoos was a journal of comics and alternative culture. Rude was ostensibly the work of four bisexual teenagers, living a "Christian hedonist" lifestyle together, but was eventually revealed to be the sole work of DuPree, who was, at the time, a father and husband in his 40s. One woman struck up a correspondence with a Rude character and was encouraged to start a sexual relationship with DuPree.
In response to a 1995 feud over an intellectual property issue, Sean Tejaratchi (publisher of Craphound) mounted an investigation of DuPree, which revealed a pattern of deceptive behavior. In 1996, Tejaratchi published his findings in the one-shot KOOL Man, which featured input from comics artist R. Crumb and others who reported unpleasant dealings with DuPree.