Beneath the streets throughout Ciudad Eldorado runs a labyrinth of sewer tunnels. When the Schwartz was temporarily shut down in 1947 in a period of political unrest, first violinist Augustine Walthoven disappeared into the sewers for two years, wreaking havoc at night in the streets of the capital city. His occasional sightings were deemed to be the hauntings of his ghostly apparition.
Kuhler was neglected and abused by his parents; shunned and mocked by his peers throughout his childhood for being “different.” Consequently, he often acted out to gain attention from his family and classmates. When he saw the 1943 film version of Phantom of the Opera at age 11, Kuhler immediately identified with the scarred character of Enrique Claudin (played by Claude Rains) who retreats to the sewers of Paris, unleashing a reign of chaos and terror upon the Paris Opera House.
Kuhler was fascinated by the sewers of Paris in the film Phantom of the Opera (1943) and Vienna in The Third Man (1949).