|“||I hadn't just survived. I was reborn. This was my life!||”|
— Bobby talks about his supposed survival of a Jigsaw trap[src]
He was portrayed by Sean Patrick Flanery.
For most of his life, Bobby Dagen was an average man and the husband of Joyce Dagen. However, his life changed one day when he sat in a bar with his best friend, Cale. While passing their time, they watched a TV report about a woman named Joan, who had managed to survive a trap set up by an infamous serial killer known as Jigsaw. During the interview, Joan told her story of survival to the public, stating that she wished the same experience for everyone like her as it had made her stronger. Furthermore, she claimed to be grateful for her horrendous game, despite her grudge against Jigsaw. Upon hearing her story, Bobby was impressed by the way these experiences changed the survivors' perspective on life. Cale assumed that these people would be able to get rich with their stories if the events they went through wouldn't leave them mentally unstable.
Eventually, Joan's story and Cale's suggestion inspired Bobby to make up his own story of surviving one of Jigsaw's games. To become rich and famous, he wrote and published his book "S.U.R.V.I.V.E. - My story of overcoming Jigsaw," in which he told his readers how he supposedly survived a deadly trap set up by the Jigsaw Killer and how his life developed afterward. To make it more believable, he scarred his pectoral muscles because, according to his story, he had to insert two hooks into his chest muscles and had been forced to hoist himself up to a platform to escape Jigsaw's trap. While Cale became his manager, he also hired Nina, a publicist, and Suzanne, a lawyer, who supported him despite their knowledge of Bobby's story being a lie. Furthermore, Bobby even lied to his wife, who believed his story and supported him as well.
One day, he organized an autograph session for the promotion of his book. On that occasion, he made acquaintance with Sara, a young woman who admired him and his book. Not knowing that his entire story was a lie, Sara claimed that while reading the book, she could feel everything Bobby supposedly went through and thanked him as the book also changed her own life in some way. After Bobby signed her copy of his book, she left the session. The next visitor was a man named John Kramer. Unbeknownst to Bobby, John was actually the Jigsaw Killer. When talking to Bobby, John hinted at his knowledge of the truth behind his story but was interrupted by Cale when Bobby had signed John's copy of the book. John thanked him for the autograph but gave him the book cover of his copy, which showed a photo of Bobby, claiming that he wouldn't need it anymore as they knew each other now. After that, he left the session. (Saw 3D)
Within the next months, John revealed his true identity to the public and eventually died six months later at the hands of Jeff Denlon, another one of his victims. Even though the games continued after his death, Bobby went on with his lie undaunted and soon organized a national tour, thereby attracting even more public attention. At one point, he was invited for an interview by Donna Evans, the host of "Daybreak," a reality show. During the interview at the Stage 6 Studios, she asked Bobby about the attention he got due to his tour, during which he promoted his book. Bobby responded that he was quite overwhelmed and flattered by the great public response to his story, stating that it pleased him if his story helped other people. Donna also asked him about his experience in the trap. In a dramatic speech, Bobby told her how he had escaped by inserting two hooks into his pectoral muscles and hoisting himself up to a platform. While he had been close to accepting his impending death, he eventually decided to fight for his life as in this moment, something inside him started to grow "from the bottom of his soul." Impressed by his dramatic story about what he called his rebirth, Donna thanked him for the interview and further promoted his tour. (Saw II, Saw III, Saw 3D)
After the interview, Nina asked Bobby why he didn't kiss his wife after his speech, as discussed earlier. Bobby responded that he had been afraid to seem unauthentic if he acted excessively emotional. Nina, however, insisted on him showing his love for his wife, calling it the "heart of the story." Suzanne, on the other hand, agreed with Bobby, stating that too much emotion might cause his performance to feel like pandering, but was quickly rebuked by Nina who was annoyed since the public relations were her job. To cool the situation down, Bobby admitted that he had made a mistake. Cale, however, told him that he had done nothing wrong. When Bobby shared a private moment with his wife afterward, she further encouraged him and stated that the people would feel that his story was real. Cale then interrupted them, reminding Bobby of a meeting with a self-help group for Jigsaw survivors the next day. Moments later, Bobby and the others left the studio. (Saw 3D)
As scheduled, Bobby attended the group's meeting the next day, accompanied by Joyce, his crew, and a camera team that recorded the session, which took place in a local church. During the meeting, Bobby listened to the stories of the other survivors, including a woman named Sidney, who had been forced to kill her boyfriend, Alex, to escape one of Jigsaw's traps. However, she stated that Alex had frequently battered her and said that her game was the first time she took action against him. Therefore, she was rebuked by Simone, another survivor, as Alex had to die for Sidney to leave him, and then told her about her own game, during which Simone had cut off her left arm. Afterward, she spoke to Bobby and asked him why he had brought a camera team with him to film their conversation. Bobby responded that he wanted to illustrate the fact that the traumatic experiences that each one of them had been forced to endure could have a positive outcome, like a new perspective on life. As Simone attempted to contradict him, Bobby interrupted her, showing an understanding and respect for her anger, and told her to take a look at the other survivors, who had all managed to find something positive in their horrific experiences.
In yet another one of his dramatic speeches, he encouraged them not to be ashamed of their experience but to be proud of having been able to survive. While doing so, he unbuttoned his shirt and let the others take a look at his self-inflicted scars. Furthermore, he talked about the value of beloved people, which he, according to himself, had never appreciated before his martyrium. He introduced Joyce to the group while kissing her and declaring his love for her. He was, however, interrupted by Dr. Lawrence Gordon, another survivor, who, unbeknownst to Bobby, was an accomplice of Jigsaw and knew about his lie. Therefore, Gordon sarcastically mocked him and his "remarkable" ability to get something positive out of his horrifying experiences. Bobby, however, tried to act confident and thanked him. Gordon and the other confused members of the group applauded him, showing their gratefulness of being part of his story. (Saw 3D)
After the meeting, Bobby and his crew were about to leave the church when Cale asked him to talk to him alone. Therefore, Joyce went on ahead with Bobby's driver and told Bobby she'd wait for him in the car. Once they were alone, Cale asked him about Dr. Gordon, the "creepy guy with the cane" as he called him. Bobby, however, assured him that Gordon was harmless and had been attending these meetings longer than he did. Cale believed him and told him to rest for a while. Furthermore, he praised him for his performance at the meeting. Bobby then left the church and was confused when neither his wife nor his driver were at the car. Moments later, he was attacked and subdued from behind by Detective Mark Hoffman, the successor of Jigsaw, who covered his face with a pig mask. Afterward, he took Bobby to the abandoned Clear Dawn Psychiatric Hospital, where he had prepared a deadly game for him. (Saw 3D)
Shortly afterward, Bobby woke up again and found himself trapped in a large, cylindrical metal cage in a dark room. Immediately afraid of his situation, he screamed for help. In an attempt to free himself, he repeatedly tried to kick off the bottom of the cage when suddenly a TV turned on in front of him, showing the infamous mechanical ventriloquist puppet used by Jigsaw to communicate with his victims. The doll introduced Bobby to his game and confronted him with the fact that his stories about surviving a trap had been nothing but lies. At the next moment, the TV showed Joyce, trapped at an unknown location with a chain around her neck. Distressed and in fear, Bobby begged Jigsaw for mercy. However, only seconds later, a 60-minute-timer was activated and started to count down. The puppet told Bobby that he'd have to face a series of tests to gain access to his wife, whom he had lied to as well, and who would die if he didn't manage to finish his game in time.
As the tape ended, the lights around Bobby turned on, and the cage was moved into an upright position and suspended several feet above the floor by a pulley system. As the cage was lifted up, two grated platforms with several large spikes attached to them were released and fell to the floor right beneath the cage. Bobby noticed a lever hanging from the ceiling and pulled it, thereby causing the bottom of the cage to fall off. Bobby, however, barely managed to hold onto the bars of the cage. Knowing that he'd be impaled by the spikes beneath him if he let go of the bars, Bobby began to swing back and forth until he was finally able to jump off and landed on the floor beyond the spikes, ungently but relatively unharmed. Thereby, he noticed another TV, showing his wife screaming for help in her trap. Bobby quickly picked himself up and tried to open the front door. However, as it had been secured by a chain, he had no other choice but to move forward on the path his abductor had planned for him. Upon looking around, he saw the words "Start your life anew" written on the steps of a staircase in red letters. The steps led up to a door, which had the words "Understand your problems" written on it. Realizing that this was the right path, Bobby went through the door, thereby recognizing the written messages as the headlines of the chapters of his book. Upon moving forward, he noticed a red line drawn on the floor, which showed him the way ahead. (Saw 3D)
As he followed the line, Bobby eventually reached another door with the words "Redefine your priorities" written on it. He carefully opened it and entered a storeroom. As he closed the door behind him, the light in the room turned on, revealing Nina, who was trapped in the room and screamed for help. She had been strapped to a chair and was surrounded by a large metal ring with four metallic posts, each one armed with a pointy metal rod aiming at her throat. Upon noticing Bobby, she begged him for help. He immediately tried to free her from the contraption, which prevented her from moving away. As this attempt remained unsuccessful, Nina further panicked. Moments later, Bobby saw the words "Play Me" written on the wall along with a red arrow pointing at a tape recorder. As he started the tape, he was introduced to his first actual test. The tape referred to an X-ray before him, which showed the key to Nina's trap that was hidden inside her body. It was, however, attached to a fish hook. Bobby had 60 seconds to pull a fishing line, to which the hook and the key were attached, out of Nina's stomach. Otherwise, the four rods surrounding her would approach and pierce her throat. However, they would also move forward each time the decibel level in the room rose above a whisper, killing her even sooner.
Despite the warning, Nina further panicked and started to scream once the tape ended. Bobby quickly pressed his hand onto her mouth and told her to be quiet while also trying to comfort her and calm her down. However, when he started to pull on the fishing line, she screamed in agony, as the hook tugged at her esophagus. Once more, he pressed his hand onto her mouth before attempting to pull out the key. Nina tried to stay calm, but couldn't do so for long and started to scream yet again. Bobby shut her up once more and frantically begged her to be quiet. However, as the time quickly ran out, he had to pull even stronger, thereby causing even more pain. Additionally, Nina coughed and spat blood in his face. Nonetheless, she told Bobby to go on. As he did, she began to scream again, but as they didn't have much time left, Bobby didn't try to shut her up again and instead went on until he finally pulled out the hook, which had a piece of Nina's flesh hanging from it. Bobby quickly tried to unlock the device. However, the timer went off, and the rods impaled Nina's throat, killing her in the process. Shocked by what had just happened, Bobby yelled at Nina's corpse that she only needed to shut up. After a few moments, he managed to calm down again and continued his way. Upon leaving the room, Bobby suddenly found a copy of his book lying on a bench. As he took a look at his autograph, he realized that it was the book he had once signed for John Kramer himself. (Saw 3D)
Bobby went on and soon came across the next door, which had the words "Verify your self-worth through commitment" written on it. When he entered the room, he immediately heard a woman crying. Thinking it was Joyce, he called for her, but soon realized it was Suzanne when the light went on. Suzanne had been strapped to a plate, which was horizontally mounted to the center axis of a large metal wheel. Bobby asked her if Cale was trapped somewhere as well. However, she only further panicked and yelled at Bobby to free her. As he tried to remove her straps, a large cylindrical cage, similar to the one he woke up in, burst through a window. Inside the cage was Jigsaw's puppet, which provided the instructions for the next game. To save Suzanne, Bobby had to step into a machine and lift a heavy weight to close a circuit for the time of 30 seconds. If he didn't manage to accomplish the task, the wheel would slowly turn and move Suzanne into an upright position until her eyes and mouth would be pierced by a contraption with three metal rods positioned before her.
After Bobby had received his instructions, the wheel started to turn. Therefore, he quickly stepped into the machine and lifted the two bars, to which the weight was attached, to the highest point. However, in doing so, four spikes pierced his obliques, two on each side of his body. Bobby tried to endure the pain, but eventually, let go of the bars. He repeatedly tried to lift the weight again and was, thereby, able to close the circuit for a few more seconds. However, just before the game ended, he found himself unable to hold on any longer and dropped the bars. Therefore, Suzanne was killed by the rods with only a few seconds left on the timer. After witnessing her death, Bobby left the machine and hesitantly approached her, looking at her body in horror and disbelief. However, as his game wasn't over yet, he went on to look for his next test. (Saw 3D)
Upon following his way, Bobby reached the next door with the words "Ignore your detractors" written on it. When he entered the long dark hallway behind it and yelled for his wife, the door suddenly slammed shut behind him. As Bobby was unable to open it again, he prepared himself for having to face another test. Moments later, the lights turned on, enabling him to see that he was several feet above the ground floor as the hallway's floorboards were missing, except for a series of destroyed beams, arches, and wooden planks. On the other side of the corridor, he saw Cale, who had a mask on his face, which made it impossible for him to see anything around him. As Cale started to panic, Bobby tried to calm him down and asked him if he knew where Joyce was, which he denied. Instead, he further panicked and begged Bobby to help him. Bobby told him not to move, as most of the floor was missing. As he looked around, he quickly noticed a tape recorder attached to the wall next to him. Therefore, he told Cale to be quiet and started the recording. The tape introduced him to his next test and informed him about the rules. Bobby had to help Cale to walk over several wooden planks to get as close to him as possible. At the same time, Bobby had to find his way to a key hanging from the ceiling and somehow get it over the last span between him and Cale. If he didn't manage to give him the key within 60 seconds, a winch at the ceiling would be engaged, causing Cale to be hanged by a noose around his neck.
As the tape ended and the timer started to count down, Cale frantically yelled at Bobby to save him. Bobby managed to calm him down and told him to listen to him precisely. He then instructed his friend to move to the right where he had to step on the first plank. While guiding him forward, Bobby tried to climb over the beams to get to the key. After reaching the end of the plank, Cale had to walk over another one lying on the first one. However, thereby he accidentally knocked off a bottle, which fell down to the floor beneath him, causing him to panic even more. After a while, Bobby was finally able to calm him down, telling him that it was merely the sound of the breaking bottle he had heard. He then instructed Cale to walk over the next plank. However, as he did it, the plank broke, and Cale was barely able to hold onto another plank nearby. Bobby told him to hold on and then jumped forward onto a stone arch. From there on, he carefully tried to grab the key, while Cale managed to pull himself up on the plank. Just as he reached the end of his path, Bobby obtained the key. With only a few seconds left, Bobby told Cale to cup his hands together close to his chest so that he could catch the key. However, when Bobby finally threw it towards him, Cale dropped it as his hands were shaking, causing it to fall down to the ground floor. Realizing that his death was inevitable now, Bobby watched in horror as his best friend was pulled up and hanged by the noose. (Saw 3D)
When Bobby finally went on, he walked down a staircase where he saw the words "Value your loved ones" written on a wall. The stairs led him to a small room. As he took a look around, a TV turned on before him, enabling him to see Joyce, who screamed for help. As she could see and hear him as well, they were able to talk with each other. Bobby wielded his hands before a camera and promised Joyce to save her. Joyce begged him to hurry. As he looked around, searching for a tape, the screen suddenly switched to the puppet, which introduced him to the next game. It informed him that the heavy metal door before him was the last obstacle between him and his wife. To open it, he had to enter a four-digit combination. The necessary numbers had been etched onto his two upper wisdom teeth. To help him, the puppet referred to a chart hanging on the wall. This chart showed him which teeth to pull and in which order to enter the digits.
When the tape ended, the screen switched back to Joyce. Bobby told her he didn't want her to watch his game and turned away from a camera. Then, he grabbed a pair of pliers lying on a table in the middle of the room and began to pull his teeth out. While screaming in agony, Bobby struggled with himself but was soon able to remove both of his teeth, enabling him to read the numbers: 5693. Thereby, he managed to open the door. Not having much time left for his game, Bobby quickly went on to finally save his wife. (Saw 3D)
As he ran through the hallways, he came across another inscription on a wall, reading, "Embrace every day as if it is your last." A few steps further, he finally reached Joyce, who was still chained to her trap in the center of a big hall. He apologized to Joyce for what she had to endure. She, however, was relieved to see him. As she begged him to help her, he immediately ran towards her but was held back and briefly paralyzed by an electric fence surrounding her. Moments later, a TV turned on, showing the puppet once more. The doll confronted him with his dishonesty and told him that he had to overcome the game that he had described in his book. To save his wife, he had to pierce two hooks, which were attached to a pulley system, through his pectoral muscles. Then, he had to hoist himself up to the ceiling, where he had to connect two extension cords before the clock expired.
When the TV turned off, Joyce asked Bobby what the puppet had meant by referring to his dishonesty. Therefore, Bobby remorsefully admitted that he had never been in a trap before. Shocked and angered by this, Joyce condemned him for his lie and started to cry. However, when Bobby told her that his love for her had always been genuine, she reciprocated his feelings. After that, Bobby took off his shirt and, despite the vast amount of pain, inserted the hooks into his chest muscles, before he began to pull himself up with the chains. As he hoisted himself up, Joyce frantically encouraged him and told him to hurry. Bobby pulled himself up further and further and, thereby, finally reached the cords. However, just as he grabbed them and tried to connect them, his muscles could no longer support his weight, causing him to fall down several feet to the floor. With only a few seconds left, Joyce desperately yelled at him.
Moments later, the timer went off, and the platform, to which she was chained, was lowered down. Then, two arching walls emerged from the sides of the platform and joined together above her at the halfway point. Finally, a funnel-shaped dome sprang up from the front of the platform, thereby entrapping Joyce in what appeared to be a giant oven. Seconds later, fire erupted from all sides of the oven's exterior. Bobby tried to get through the electric fence to save his wife but collapsed due to the electric shock. While bursting into tears, he was forced to watch while Joyce was slowly and painfully roasted alive before him. (Saw 3D)
Bobby Dagen was a greedy and dishonest man, evident by the lie he had created for the sole reason of gaining wealth and fame. During his public performances, he always acted in a dramatic and exaggerated, yet charming way to convince everyone of his story, suggesting that he was a highly self-confident person. To protect his secret and make his story as believable as possible, he even lied to his wife and scarred his chest.
Nonetheless, he deeply and genuinely loved Joyce and his friends and endured great pain throughout his test to save them, even though it was all in vain. He showed great remorse and anguish for his actions, especially for lying to his wife. Because she had also been targeted for his misdeeds by Jigsaw, Bobby blamed himself for her imprisonment.
- Bobby is the only protagonist who failed to save anyone throughout his entire game.
- A deleted scene from Saw 3D shows a conversation between Bobby and Cale in the bar, during which they plan their lie after watching Joan's story on TV. Their dialogue in this scene suggest that it was actually Cale who came up with the entire plan and also hired Nina and Suzanne to help them.
- It is currently unknown what happened to Bobby Dagen after his game. According to Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan in the DVD commentary of Saw 3D, an early version of the ending would have shown Bobby taken to the hospital after his test and meeting Dr. Gordon there.
Appearances and References
|Saw||Saw II||Saw III||Saw IV||Saw V||Saw VI||Saw 3D||Jigsaw||Spiral|
|Full Disclosure Report||The Scott Tibbs Documentary||Saw: The Video Game||Saw II: Flesh & Blood|