This chapter traces the genesis and development of the idea in contemporary America, emphasizing once again the contribution of works that were originally intended as pure fiction or perhaps parody, yet supplied ideas that have come to be taken very seriously. The dominance of the political Right and the power of religious fundamentalism favoured interpretations of behaviour that emphasized the presence of objective evil, and charges about sinister cults and conspiracies focused on movements that are generally occult or satanic in nature. The idea of cult killings is traces back to the original Jack the Ripper murders, which occurred in London during 1888, when the failure to locate a perpetrator gave rise to speculation about the powerful forces that might be at work. The investigations were in various ways focusing attention on the violent or criminal activities of real or supposed cults, which were increasingly likely to be perceived as satanic.