What You Never Knew About John Bobbitt's Ex-Wife Dottie Brewer

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If you weren't around in the 1990s, it's a little hard to explain just how addicted everyone was to sleazy, ridiculous tabloid stories. In a sense, that sort of thing has always been around, but something about the '90s — whether it was media deregulation, unprecedented economic growth, or just the general influence of Bill Clinton — kicked it into high gear. Headlines and news cycles were dominated by the faces of O.J. Simpson, JonBenét Ramsey, Donald Trump (wonder what that guy's up to), and others with dramatic, miserable lives and deaths; television was devoted to the likes of Geraldo Rivera and Jerry Springer tabloid TV. 

But perhaps the news story (or non-news story) that most exemplified the era — aside from Monica Lewinsky, of course — was the story of Lorena and John Wayne Bobbitt.

In reality, the story, though sensational, was a fairly common one: A man allegedly abused a woman for years, and she finally struck back. The main difference here — and what made the story a media sensation — was that Lorena had cut off John's penis as revenge for years of rape and abuse. It was enough to make her a feminist icon (not that she ever wanted the gig) and enough to catapult John into a bizarre life of unearned celebrity, porn gigs, bizarre body modification — and a trail of ex-wives in his wake.

Dottie Brewer was the first woman not to ask about John Bobbitt's penis

The first thing you need to know about John Wayne Bobbitt is that he wasn't mutilated for long. His penis was recovered, it was reattached almost immediately, and by all accounts, it was pretty functional and normal-looking. He even starred in a pornographic film, "John Wayne Bobbitt Uncut," to prove it (though the main reason for taking the role was, of course, money — penis reattachment surgery doesn't come cheap).

This all was true, mind you. Prior to filming his second porno, "Frankenpenis," Bobbitt agreed to undergo penis enlargement surgery — a technique that pretty much never goes well, even under the best of circumstances (via Medical News Today) and apparently resulted in a penis described as looking like "a dented Red Bull can" (via Pajiba).

Given this long and storied history, it makes at least some sense that Bobbitt fell for Louisiana legal researcher Dottie Brewer, as she was (at least as she tells it) the first person he met who didn't immediately ask about his penis. "We talked about his childhood and his life," Brewer told Us Magazine in 2004. "That's what I wanted to know about. Not, 'How's your d***?' He loved that about me. He said, 'You are the first person on the planet to never ask me about my penis'."

They were married — perhaps unsurprisingly — at a 1:30 a.m. ceremony, held at a Las Vegas chapel.

Brewer divorced Bobbitt, wrote a memoir about it, and then seemingly disappeared

In the same US interview, Brewer comments: "The three questions people ask me the most about John are, What does it look like?, Does it work? and, Did Lorena have a reason? My answer is, 'It's ugly, it works and, yes, she did.'" So, now you know.

Brewer and Bobbitt were married for about 32 days before Brewer filed for divorce (because he went after an old flame, she says, although the alleged painful sex with his Frankenpenis presumably didn't help). Unwilling to let her tabloid-cover marriage go to waste, though, Brewer went ahead and published her memoir "This Week I Married John Wayne Bobbitt: Extraordinary Stories About an Ordinary Life" through her own startup company, which she modestly named Billion $ Baby Productions. Copies of it are hard to find now, but Amazon reviews describe it as a mix of stream-of-consciousness memoir, New Age self-help, and dishing about — well, you know.

Press releases for "This Week I Married John Wayne Bobbitt" promised that Brewer was hard at work on her follow-up book, promisingly titled "I Saw Jesus in the Cat Food Bowl," but — tragically — the sophomore work never materialized, and Brewer seemingly no longer has much of an internet presence. Here's hoping that's because that first memoir sold well enough to pay for an early retirement — if not, we hope we don't see her in an ill-advised porno soon.