silent hill 2 . plot analysis
written by Da Dood
"If you ReaLly want to sEE Mary, you shOUld just DiE.
But You mIght be hEadiNg to A diffErent place than MARY, James"
-- Neely's Bar, Alternate
SPOILERS NOTE: The key elements of this theory are based on several
facts that occur near or right in the end of the story. So, don't
consider this to be a plot guide... it's more of a plot analysis.
GAME VERSION: This file covers every single fact seen in the
original version of the game (PS2), not on Greatest Hits / Restless
Dreams versions (I do not own them).
COPYRIGHT STUFF: Well, this is all known. If you want to publish
anything from my analysis or the doc itself, just contact me and I'll
be glad to help you out. :)
NO BASHING: I am not, in any way, trying to bash or kill anyone's
theories with mine. This is just one more theory, it's just a new way
(among several) of looking and understanding this story, giving it an
entirely new meaning. OK?
UPDATES: I'm not a big fan of that incredibly dull five-page
"updates" section that plagues most FAQs and guides, so I simply list
dates of my three latest changes or improvements in the very last
lines of the guide. If huge changes happen, don't worry, you'll be
C O N T E N T S
I ............... What you'll find here
II .............. Introduction
III ............. Damn Freud
IV .............. It's all in James' mind
V ............... Monsters
VI .............. Character Analysis
VII ............. Story Analysis
VIII ............ Endings
IX .............. FAQ
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
What you'll find HERE
Welcome to my Silent Hill 2 Plot Analysis! :) The main objective of
this document is to give this beautiful story a new focus. This focus
can be exemplified with the quote above the Intro Notes: that our
dearest protagonist James Sunderland did not kill Mary for love. He is
a "murderer", who stopped loving his wife as he found out that she
would die from an incurable disease -- and he would lose the one thing
he was after.
To understand and keep track on this theory is easy: you just need to
know what happened in the plot twist near the end of the game - that
James killed Mary. That's all.
To keep it short: It's a simple theory.
I N T R O D U C T I O N
Your regular protagonist James Sunderland gets trapped in his own
nightmare when he suddenly finds out that his wife Mary sent him a
letter. Not a bad marriage issue - the thing is, Mary died three years
ago. Here are the letter contents:
"In my restless dreams, I see that town. Silent Hill.
You promised you'd take me there again someday...
But you never did. Well, I'm alone there now...
In our 'special place'... Waiting for you..."
James decides to visit that town, looking for some clues that may help
him solve this puzzle. Why would his wife send him a letter, being
dead for three years now? His love for the late wife drives him to a
nightmare, where he will face his worst fears. His love...
Was it really his love? Michaelis dictionary (c) 2003 says:
"L.ove (lat amore) 1. Type of feeling that drives people to what they
consider beautiful, full of dignity or grandiosity; 2. Grand affection
from a person to another; 3. Affection, great friendship, spiritual
connection; 4. The object that simply represents this affection; 5.
Benevolence, careness, sympathy; 6. Tendency or instinct that drives
animals to reproduction; 7. Sexual desire; 8. Ambition; 9. Cultuation,
veneration; 10. Charity."
So... how to define James' love? In this document, I'll tell you why
did James Sunderland kill his wife in a bad way. I am going to show
you that there is a total selfish side in James, and the kind side
James portrays in the story is nothing but a (notice the quoting)
"false personality" (more about that later). There are indications to
that, and we're about to look at them in a simple, understandable way.
To define love in Silent Hill 2, we are going with number 7.
This theory will explain why James' love for Mary didn't exist.
Don't panic, though!
D A M N F R E U D
You know, I never liked that guy. I almost always slept in Freud
classes at college. But that guy said something that sticked to my
mind ever since I heard it: "Men and women lead their whole lives
around their basic needs", which is true. As I learned in general
Psychology classes, a normal human being has basically four physical
needs to fulfill during his whole life: the need to eat; the need to
sleep; the need of shelter; and the need of pleasure (Freud's
The basic concept of a NEED is a bit auto-referencial: if one human
being has been thrown out of one of his needs, you could say that he
won't ever live happily -- or won't live at all.
Of course, we must consider how sheer happiness can be defined by one
of the other needs. Like someone that feels happy eating. Well,
everyone feels happy eating... it's just that, for some people, this
happiness surpasses any other. So, instead of going out with his
girlfriend on Saturday night, the man spends the night eating -- and
loving it. Also, you must assume that every single person in the world
is unique and has their own ways of reaching a state of happiness. I,
for example, am truly happy while playing Silent Hill. A football
player that gets happy playing that sport would just laugh at me and
wouldn't believe. Happiness is a personal issue.
Understanding that, we can move on to James' needs.
We can tell for sure that he's not starving. We can also be certain
that he lives in a nice home, with a hot shower and warm blankets.
Now, remember: the fourth need is called "pleasure". Our James, here,
takes the subject too seriously. This is the basic topic of discussion
in this theory: To him, pleasure IS physical pleasure. To him, love is
defined number 7. Why? Because of his actions. Because of every single
item that will be analyzed during the document. You will see that his
love for Mary was nothing but an unknown cover for simple human
needs... and he got tricked by keeping with that.
Poor James. Guilt ate him all over.
I T ' S A L L I N J A M E S ' M I N D
Another thing that we must put as certain is that all happenings in
the game are nothing but James' self-punishment for Mary's murder. We
cannot tell for sure whether James really experienced all of that or
if he's lying unconscious on a bed in a hospital, dreaming all of this
(unlikely)... but it's sure that his troubled mind is the master of
almost every bizarre creation in this story.
If you have any problems with that, just think logically: for example,
James finds a mannequin wearing his dead wife's clothes in the
Woodside Apts. Well, unless someone wore that same outfit in the same
way as Mary (impossible), we can tell for sure that James' mind - with
physical aid of Silent Hill's powers - created that there.
Another example to clear this thought - James faces two extremely
weird areas in the game: the Labyrinth and the Hotel. The Labyrinth is
showing us that James' mind is going through changes, as if he was
just about to find out something really important - notice that the
place has no physical coherence with anything, just like the Prison's
wacky hallways that precede the Labyrinth. His mind is [finally!]
working. The Hotel appears as it was then, when James visited with
Mary. Later then, we see the Hotel as it almost really is today (save
for a few "Silent Hill-y" remarks).
After clearing that this whole story is a product of James' actions,
needs and of his own mind, we must come up with the game's prime
issue. I mean, I set that his principal needs are the physical ones...
but in which meaning? To confirm that AND to link the answer with the
concept of love used in this game (sexual desire), we must analyze
this game's monsters. After all, they are all creations of James'
M O N S T E R S
Well, the concept of a monster is well-known. Something, usually with
a disturbing form, stalking or scaring someone for no apparent reason.
Every single monster of this game has a little meaning hidden behind
its forms and ways. The man (men) who created those monsters didn't
want just to make them look weird. He (they) wanted to make them
fragments of James' psyche.
Now, we are going to study these monsters to understand what is the
*main issue* of James' troubled trip to Silent Hill. We're going to
confirm the principal subject implied in this game. When you reach the
middle of this section, it'll be more than obvious. I am not going to
analyze the cockroach, as it has no relevance to the story.
The king of all popular monsters in the series, Pyramid Head makes a
difference by his weird looks - he has a metal-something covering his
head, and walks funny (maybe drunk). These looks are there to resemble
executioners from a long time ago -- they never showed their heads, as
if they had nothing to do with the killing; they're just postmen
delivering the message. The weirdest thing about Pyramid Head is that
he's supposed to represent... James Sunderland. PH is always shown
doing something wrong -- killing Maria (a representation of Mary) all
the time and performing serious sex crimes. His metal-something for a
head could represent James' shame and guilt, too. Think of the potato
sack. You could say, in a short sentence, that Pyramid Head
exaggerately represents James' true personality.
aka Lying Creature or Straight-Jacket, the Demon Patient represents
simply a trap, a prison - for James or Mary. They might represent
Mary's disease condition. Primarily, because the jacket thing is
something present in illness conditions (normally mental, but
Brookhaven isn't there for nothing). Finally, because it's something
that she is trapped to, that she won't ever recover from. They could
also represent James' psychological condition: a mental prison that'll
end up consuming him. Also, I see them as female, as we encounter
Pyramid Head raping one of them (no discrimination there, just the
deduction of James' sexuality implied to Pyramid Head's actions).
Probably the clearest sexual reference of the game. The mannequins
here are simply two female legs glued to two female legs. There's our
first start to how James' physical/shallow needs surpass his so-called
love for Mary: on the place where you get the Flashlight, you bump
into this regular mannequin model (whole body, no head) that clearly
points James' sexual desires. Note: the mannequin is wearing Mary's
clothes. See where I'm going? Plus, the mannequin is another monster
raped by Pyramid Head, which makes James' true nature even stronger.
Nurses are a tradition in Silent Hill games. In SH2, particularly,
they come with a different treat: no faces. Just their bodies and
heads, but no faces; another woman-object reference.
The Mandarin, known as previewed Closers from SH3 (I don't see that),
are plain chasers. They might represent the perseverance in James'
purpose in Silent Hill - to reach for a certain (wrong) goal. Theirs
is to kill; James' is to find Mary. The only unique thing about them
is that they're trapped in a level that they can't go through (the
ground). They will always be on the under level and won't ever
acchieve their objectives - kinda like James.
Well, everyone's tired of saying that, but Angela's papa represents
sexual obsession. Now, try not to look at his side before the "bed" or
"door" or "frame" thing. Try looking UNDER it. Now imagine Angela
looking at that. It's a door, a rectangle-shaped wood piece made for
Angela not to see her dad -- but, still, get raped. This represents
her pain in being abused by a loved one. Now where does that fit into
James' mind? Because, roughly and considering the conceptual basis of
this theory, James is the same as her father (Angela even says that to
him). He just didn't force Mary at any time. He's not a sexual
predator, but he's moved by the same need. It's still there.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
I will analyze the bosses in the story part. I analyzed Pyramid Head
because he is the main antagonist, supposed to represent James. With
the main monsters analyzed, we can tell for sure that the principal
issue in this story, the one that we'll use as a link to finally
understand James' actions, is called S*E*X. Notice that you mustn't
take things literally: having a main theme being "sex" does not mean,
in any way, that James is a sexual predator or a nature-born pervert.
It means that this was the way that the developers found to base
James' motives and tell him why he doesn't love Mary. It's a simple
representation of a superficial being. They're not saying: "James, you
wanted to rape Mary!"; they're saying: "James, you're a rather shallow
person.". Connect that with James' murder and you've got yourself the
whole theory basis.
After confirming James' main issue in the story, let's take the main
characters in the game and cross-info their personalities and actions
with the aforementioned issue. Don't blink in this section, as it is
the most important in the whole analysis.
C H A R A C T E R A N A L Y S I S
You'll see here that every single character in this game has a
sexual, selfish or shallow issue behind their masks. Even Laura, but
it's not exactly her fault. I'm going to briefly list who are those
characters and what are their main objectives in Silent Hill. Then,
I'll analyze those objectives in the story section, crossing info
learned in the game's happenings with the characters' personalities.
Simple as that.
Please note that I didn't "prove" or indicate anything yet. Take these
descriptions below as if I already had written the whole analysis and
got to 'those conclusions' about each character. I will, however,
"prove" (I use quotes because this is just a theory) everything during
the next section, the Story Analysis. These descriptions below should
stay in your head as you read the analysis, because they are the main
** IMPORTANT: If I were a teacher, I would hand every single person
that reads this document a piece of paper, containing the information
below about each character -- to keep track of the analysis. That's
important, as the theory is understood like this:
1 - You'll read the story analysis (next section);
2 - You'll confirm every single item with the descriptions below.
To talk more 'practical': I would select the brief section below and
print it, to avoid going back to this section all the time amd
comparing every single piece of info with every single character,
damaging your patience level (?). Or, easily enough, copy/paste it to
a new doc and just alt+tab them during the story analysis. It's simple
and easy. :) I strongly recommend one of those because there might be
a point in the analysis where you will read my arguments and forget
what they mean to the theory, and say "why the hell is the guy saying
To make things easier, right after the character analysis section
there's a PRINT POCKET VERSION of the descriptions, for print or
copy/paste. So, please, keep the character analysis in your hands all
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
* WHO IS HE?: A recently middle-aged man that just killed his wife out
of selfishness, to have his life back. He couldn't stand the fact that
she was sick and ending his happiness (which are defined by his
needs... which are defined, in this game, by physical pleasure and
shallow smiles... which, in the game, is represented by sexual
incidents and caricatures). He is not a two-dimensional character, nor
a serial killer. He's not a sexual predator. He's just selfish, he
simply wants what is best for himself. He murdered once (well, twice)
for reasons of his own, that we are not exactly supposed to judge, but
understand. He did treat his wife as an object, but didn't realize
that until she got sick. He realized that Mary was not as perfect as
he would like her to be. After he killed her, he hid that gruesome
personality behind this kind man - through a fairly common process
known as "memory repression", who would do anything to be with his
* WHY IS HE IN TOWN?: He is in Silent Hill to receive self-punishment,
or: to learn the truth. He felt guilty for what he did - even though
he wanted to kill her - and deserves to learn the truth. James
accidentally created a wrong "side", of a caring man that just wants
his wife back... and Silent Hill will uncover this personality as he
advances in the story and realizes what he did. James is ashamed of
his true self.
To make it short, James is in Silent Hill to receive punishment for
murdering his wife. Plus, he needs to remember two things: that he
commited that act of murder and that this personality he's showing is
* WHO: The lovely and innocent wife got sick and died years ago (or
one week ago, depending on your story views). She didn't exactly die
from the disease, she was murdered by her own husband. She thought
James was acting strange around her during the disease. Mary was a
happy woman who didn't want to die at all. Of course, she wanted the
pain to end... but she didn't want to die like that.
* WHY: She's in Silent Hill (not literally, mind you!) to prove James
that he commited a gruesome act AND that he didn't treat her well (he
was not a good husband). Using a different method, she will make James
understand that he has lost her by dividing herself in two different
entities: Maria and Laura. Maria stands for Mary's wild and 'James-
like' side (the one that he finds perfect) and Laura stands for her
innocent and pure side (add annoying to that). Maria is there to show
James the truth (about his personality and the murder) and Laura is
there to treat him bad, to tell him that he was not a good husband and
to trick James. To hate him, simply.
To make it short: Mary is in Silent Hill divided into two entities:
Maria and Laura; to prove James that he commited a gruesome act, that
he is not the way he's acting (both Maria's missions) and to tell him
that he didn't really love his wife (Laura).
* WHO: Maria is James' perfect version of his wife Mary. Maria is what
James wanted Mary to be all along: beautiful, wild, naughty, slutty
and fun - just for him, of course. She has different clothes and hair
from Mary (proof that James is shallow and noticed only that about
Maria in the first place) and has a totally different personality.
* WHY: She is in Silent Hill to prove James that he is a murderer and
that he did not love Mary at whole -- he just loved one side of her,
the side that he could have fun with: Maria. In other words, to reveal
his true self and make him remember or acknowledge that he treated his
wife as an object. The James that is in Silent Hill (the false one,
the kind one that he has created to block his memories from the past)
doesn't remember that he killed Mary OR that he just loved her fun
side. She's there to make him remember those, by seducing him and by
getting (yes) murdered all the time, by our dearest Pyramid Head (who
is a representation of James' TRUE, cruel and selfish side). Only,
there's something to teach him now: he created Maria and Laura to
differ the nice and boring sides of his wife. Maria is the side that
he wants to be with. She's always remembering him of the good times
and wanting to touch him. He just didn't expect to see that the side
that got sick IS the fun side, and not the boring one. It's Maria who
starts to get sick along in the journey, not Laura... which points us
that James can't have a perfect Mary -- he would just have to accept
her as she is (as seen in the Maria ending). Maria will make James
understand that yes, he is shallow - but that a perfect person shall
never exist the way he wants.
To make it short, Maria is in Silent Hill to show James the truth
about the murder.
* WHO: Just remember, this is my theory! :) Nothing factual about it.
Little Laura is a creation of Silent Hill in James' quest. His mind-
created Mary divided herself into two different people. Laura got the
annoying and innocent part. She's even portrayed as a child, to assure
James himself that he doesn't want her in his life beside him. There's
a lot of discussions regarding whether Laura is real or not. I believe
she is not real and I will list several reasons for that. They might
convince you or not, but, in order to understand this theory, you must
assume that she's not real. By the way, did you notice that the unreal
characters (Laura and Maria) are the only ones that don't have a last
* WHY: She's in Silent Hill to show James that he hasn't been a nice
husband. She's portrayed in one of Mary's letters as a girl who
doesn't like James at all (with Laura being part of Mary, you should
assume that Mary didn't approve of James' latest actions). She is
constantly being rude to James without even "knowing" him. She does
not trust him, she is there to make James' guilty side appear. She's
in Silent Hill primarily to lead James to his punishment, along with
Maria. Notice that, unlike Maria, Laura is NOT leading James to the
truth. She is there, also, to find Mary (her innocent self led her to
believe that she is real, and that her relationship with Mary did
exist... so she looks for her the entire game. More on that later).
Maria is constantly showing the truth to James, but never does
anything to advance in that concept (she just keeps getting killed and
being "slutty"). Laura does advance in the plot, but without noticing
that - with the letters and the places she run to - including the
Hotel. Laura does not see any monsters because she is invulnerable to
everything - she is Mary's pure side. That fact is there to prove that
if James wanted to have Mary, he couldn't have just Maria. He should
take Laura with him too. To resume, Laura is in Silent Hill to avenge
James' way of treating Mary, by treating him badly and tricking him
all the time. Also, her innocence also made her allow James' new
"personality" to gain her trust, so she treats James a little better
towards the end of the game.
To make it short, Laura is in Silent Hill as a creation of the town,
as Mary's sweet, innocent side. She's there to tell James that he
hasn't been a good husband and to literally hate on him. The thing
about her is that her innocence - by little pieces of evidence
analyzed - led her to believe that she IS real and that she really DID
meet Mary. The memories created for her (plus the letter and James'
hate) took control of Laura. So, she starts looking for Mary.
* WHO: Eddie is a fat man who spent his entire life taking mockeries
from people around him. They call him fat all the time, and Eddie just
kept that unswallowed in his throat. The trigger happens when he gets
to Silent Hill. He starts to kill (or 'just' hurt badly) every person
that tries to mock him, in any way -- including James, who is set for
one of the most stupid lines of the VG world (Eddie: "From now on,
anyone that makes fun of me, I'll kill them, just like that!" James
follows like this: "Eddie, have you gone nuts?"). I could swear that
everytime I hear that, sitcom electronic laughs come right after.
* WHY: The Dombrowski fatty is in Silent Hill to make James meet his
alias in real life -- at least, in attitude. Well, just like Eddie
said, he and James are the same for the simple fact that they both
have been called to Silent Hill because of guilt - in this case, the
guilt of murder. He's one of the 3 live and real people in town --
along with James and Angela. His reason is simple as that, and it's
just to guide James to the truth. Eddie kills for a dumb reason and
James contests that. The tables turn later after the tape, when James
realizes that he and Eddie are the same.
To make it short, Eddie is in Silent Hill to (along with HIS OWN
reasons) help James find the truth about what he did. They're both the
same (murderers) and were called to town for the same reason. Eddie is
one of the 3 real people in SH, along with James and Angela.
* WHO: To me, this character should have been better used in the game.
Angela could be a richer character than even James or Mary. Angela is
a woman who has been sexually/physically abused by her father,
apparently through her whole life. This got her to grow a horrible
vision on life - and men - as years passed by. Angela is scared of
James because she sees the same masculine image as she sees in her
father, as the same _entity_ as her father. Angela - and Angela only -
sees him as a perverted SOB.
* WHY: She's in Silent Hill to give James a real example of suffering,
along with Eddie. Let's remember again: there are two main things that
James finds out in the game: 1 - that he murdered a human being; 2 -
that he takes shallow desires too seriously and, through his whole
marriage, treated his wife as a mere object and didn't even realize
it. While Eddie is there to prove number 1 to James, Angela is in
Silent Hill to indicate the second one. Also, she has the life issue
mentioned above. She has no life to live, so she feels free to make a
choice and kill herself. I believe that, in HER OWN WAY, she is in
Silent Hill to get the allowance to finally kill herself and be in
peace. Her life issue is there to make James notice that Mary didn't
want to die at all -- that she was happy before the disease, and he
shouldn't end her like that. The connection is simple enough: Angela
has reasons to want to die; Mary was happy. Her disease does not equal
the rest of her life. You get Angela's knife to examine and determine
your ending: if you examine it too much, you'll be immersed on this
suicide theme and end up "in water" with the answer figured out.
To make it short, Angela is in Silent Hill to (along with HER OWN
reasons) make James remember that he was selfish throughout the
marriage, and treated his wife like an object, to show him that he did
not love Mary. Plus, she's there to indicate James that Mary didn't
want to die -- because she had memories and a life before the disease.
Angela does have true reasons to wish for death.
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With the section above in mind (if you didn't read it well, read it
again, carefully), keep a copy of that with you (or in your memory,
who knows!) and just cross the information from the whole Story
Analysis with the character info you've got in hands. Here's a little
printable Pocket version of the analysis from above. Good luck! :)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ POCKET ANALYSIS _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
*** JAMES - Murdered Mary in an act of selfishness. He "created" a
false personality (the one seen in the game) to cover his memories
from the happening. This personality is uncovered as he finishes
watching the tape. He is in Silent Hill to be punished (by himself? By
God? By Silent Hill? Doesn't matter) for the murder AND to remember
two things: the murder itself and that he does not have this new
personality or idealistic representation: he treated his wife in a
shallow, selfish way. Especially after the disease started.
Keyword: REPRESSED SHALLOW
*** MARY - Murdered by her own husband, Mary did not want to die. She
was happy before the disease and wanted to continue living. She's in
Silent Hill divided into two entities: Laura and Maria. They're meant
for James to discover that he's a murderer and that he's not like the
person portrayed in the game.
Keyword: DEAD REVENGER
*** MARIA - knows the truth and keeps showing it to James all the time
(getting killed and being slutty), but can't get him to figure it out.
So, she'll need Laura's unintentional help.
Keyword: TRUTHFUL HALF
*** LAURA - created by Silent Hill to tell James that he hasn't been
treating Mary nicely at all; and to mess with him, trick him for that,
portraying her childish ways. In resume, Laura was created to hate
James. Is Mary's annoying and innocent side. Because she was created
with freedom and as a physically real girl with senses and memories,
her innocence led her to believe that her made-up relationship with
Mary is true, and keeps looking for her. Doesn't know that Mary was
murdered. Her innocence ends up helping James to find the truth -- the
places she visit and the things she says and shows him. Her innocence
also allowed James' new personality to gain her trust, so, she treats
James a little better by the end of the game.
Keyword: INNOCENT HALF
*** EDDIE - a real man with real issues. His problems concern people
that mock him all the time for being fat and useless. His solution was
to kill everyone who makes fun of him. He ends up saying that he and
James are the same -- which is true. They are both murderers that were
called to the town to be punished. He is in Silent Hill, also, to
remind James that he too is a murderer.
Keyword: MURDERER II - THE SEQUEL
*** ANGELA - a real woman with real issues. She has been sexually
abused by her father, probably her whole life. She is there to tell
James that he is (basing on _her_ views) a pervert, and to indirectly
show him that she's not like Mary. She does have a reason to want
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ POCKET ANALYSIS _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Got the Pocket Analysis? Then let us cross all that character
information with the ones given in the story chronologically. Let's
make one simple thing clear -- every single fact or character is in
this story to either one of these two things:
1 - To show James that he is a murderer
2 - to show James that his new personality is somewhat false, that he
is selfish and used his wife for shallow needs, as he realized how
love - as he defines it - didn't exist.
S T O R Y A N A L Y S I S
In this section, you'll find every single piece of metaphor and little
references to any and everything. This is the place for analysis of
the game itself, as it goes by. I'm going to list over 50 notes that I
made when playing and studying Silent Hill 2. The order of events is
the same as the game's.
01. JAMES' REFLECTION - Let us start from the first single frame of
animation seen in the game. James already starts the adventure looking
for an answer. A mirror is a sign of duplication or duality
(representing James' new and false personality, created to drive him
away from his acts in the past), but it also can show signs of doubt
and self-analysis. James is uncertain of what is going on since the
02. MARY'S LETTER - "In my restless dreams, I see that town. Silent
Hill. You promised you'd take me there again someday... but you never
did. Well, I'm alone there now. In our 'special place'... Waiting for
you". Spooky, huh? Imagine yourself receiving a letter from your dead
wife. This is the first place where James starts questioning his
sanity ("Dead people can't write a letter"). What's to analyze here?
Well, James thinks he is in Silent Hill to find his dead wife. That's
it. But he is in Silent Hill to take off the mask that he put on, to
hide the fact that he's a murderer, shallow and selfish. After a
little intro on his relationship with his wife (and the mentioning of
the Park as a possible 'special place'), you get to control him again.
You grab the map and go on to the direction of Toluca Lake.
03. CEMETERY TALK - On the first meeting with Angela, you talk about
the reasons why you're going to Silent Hill. She warns you that it's
not safe. Then, she mentions that she is looking for her mother, and
that her father and her brother are missing, too. Notice that during
all of her conversations she says a lot of "I'm sorry", which
practically shows that she is an easy going, passive person. You see
that there's something wrong with her.
04. MONSTER SIGHT - James reaches the streets for the first time and
sees someone walking away. He decides to follow it. Knowing that this
monster is a representation of Mary's disease and its trap onto James
himself, you could see the first sign of his connection with that.
05. RADIO STATIC - When finally facing the first monster in the game,
you get your first weapon and a weird Radio, transmitting only this
weird white static noise. You can hear Mary's voice saying a lot of
unclear blabbering. Among them, you can understand, by deduction,
"James, I'm here", "Waiting for you" and the most important of them:
"Why did you kill me?". This is the first sign that Mary didn't want
to die at all -- and, of course, that James actually killed her. It's
amazing how they easily make you figure out that quote on the second
play -- but never on the first one.
06. MANNEQUIN CLOTHES - You first enter the apartment building and
then a room with a light catching your attention. Here is the first
clear sexual/shallow reference of the game: the mannequin model is
wearing James' dead wife's clothes and holding a Flashlight. The
mannequin has no head, which drives us to the obvious reference of
woman-object. A body without a face is meant for a man without a
heart. Right after that, we encounter the first actual Mannequin
monster (female legs plus female legs, glued). That is, of course, a
live sexual repression: James sees that "person" or "being" as a
double pair of legs.
07. FIRST MEMO - Same room as above. The first memo we get from the
game (not counting the corpse #ed memos, which are merely survival
tips) is the first with plot relevance. I should say that I always get
so nervous in that room that I never noticed the memo until very
recently. The memo is entitled "How to be a happy couple". One of
their tips is to "never turn to another woman", a clear hint for James
to stay away from Maria, because he will never be able to have her
alone. This, also, has intention to warn James that he should never
abandon someone that he loves/that loves him. The thing is: this memo
changes as you beat the game with certain endings. I've chosen the one
that mostly hints to the theory. Gameplay-wise, this is simply a hint
on how to reach an ending.
08. LAURA, 1ST ENCOUNTER - Now that is a bratty little girl. Stupid,
I'd say. Here's the first sign to uncover Laura's unreal condition:
she kicks away James' key for nothing. It's as if she already knew him
(well, she does, but that is because she is one of Mary's halves,
after all). Not only that, she still mocks him ("Ha-Ha!"), as if she
really wanted that and knew exactly what she was doing. She WANTS him
to fail his quest. It's her meaning in the story. This is the first
time when you might actually relate a character's action with the
09. PYRAMID HEAD FIRST SIGHT - You first see Pyramid Head with a
deadly red glow. This is intended for James to deal with his guilt and
his executioner identity for the first time. Notice that PH stands
still and, if you're looking directly at him, you should be standing
still, too. So, it could be just like a big-ass real-time mirror. It's
the first time that James confronts his true personality -- his
murderer/shallow side. Notice, also, that they're separated by what
looks like prison bars.
10. PYRAMID HEAD RAPE SCENE - The first rape scene from Pyramid Head
is meant for James to indicate his true nature self. If our buddy
Pyramid Head represents James, and PH is raping a monster (" who also
has a clear sexual meaning), we can assume that, theoretically, basing
on his actions, James is very little different from a man that rapes a
woman. Well, obviously enough, PH is raping a Mannequin, that had one
of its comrades dressed as Mary just before. Watching Pyramid Head
rape the monster really messes with James' psyche.
11. WALTER SULLIVAN - When you check the garbage downstairs, you'll
find out about this man, Walter Sullivan, who murdered two people and
got arrested. Well, this man claims to have seen a Red Devil, right
before killing himself with a spoon. From this, you could assume
either one of two things: 1 - he saw Pyramid Head and just couldn't
stand being chased by his own guilt... and killed himself; 2 - or,
this Red Devil wasn't Pyramid Head, and he just couldn't stand being
chased by his own guilt... again. The only variable item here is
whether PH appeared or not for Walter. But I believe his actions were
the important thing here, as Walter is like a mix of James (murderer)
and Angela (suicidal). Besides, Silent Hill 4 has already hinted that
the so-called "Red Devil" is part of that story, not SH2's.
12. EDDIE IS PUKING - You find Eddie and, right after that, he claims
not to be guilty of murder -- his first connection with James. He
clearly killed that person in the kitchen and is just dealing with
that. Or denying. We don't get to know anything about him, except that
he does have a lot of food to throw up. He's not from Silent Hill,
just like James. A quote to analyze is: "Something brought you here
too, right?". Notice the guilt in that sentence. After you finish the
game, it gets clear that they both needed to be punished and were
"invited" to town for that.
13. RESORT MEMO - Here is a little reference to James' fate by
creating a false personality to the rest of his life. On the Silent
Hill promotion memo there is a phrase that goes like this: "I hope
your memory last forever". Stupid editor Roger. :) He predicted the
whole thing and doesn't even know it (this is an exaggeration! Don't
take it seriously). The flyer was about Silent Hill's vacation pros,
like spending your time in Lakeview Hotel or the Lake. If you cross
those informations, you get the final area of the game: the Hotel, as
it is in James' memory.
14. PYRAMID HEAD FIGHT #1 - The first boss battle in the game starts
with yet another rape scene by PH. That seems a lot more like oral sex
than penetration, but that's the same cruel act, of course. After
that, you get to fight him. He has this big great knife, which will be
an important analysis item later on in the Labyrinth section. After
some time, a huge SIREN sound calls for Pyramid Head -- this sound
being the most discussed and mysterious of all, ever since SH1. My
vision of the siren, in this game, is merely an evil indicator that
James is the same as Pyramid Head... as, when PH hears it, he goes in
that direction; James hears a less violent version of a siren (a boat)
in the Historical Society and goes for it, too. That is used to
connect James and Pyramid Head once more.
Silent Hill Streets
15. LAURA ON THE WALL - That weird girl comes back even weirder. She
comes saying that "maybe she did kick the key", wanting to make fun of
James. She shows herself even more unreal: when James asks her for a
reason as to why is she in town, she just answers "huh? Are you blind
or something?". She thinks he KNOWS about her purpose in the story,
but he doesn't. The climax comes right now, when you can easily say
that she is NOT real and is a part of Mary: out of nowhere, she just
'launches' the following: "You didn't love Mary, anyway". This might
hint that Laura is in Silent Hill to hate James.
16. MARIA AT THE PARK - So, James gets to their so called 'special
place'. This will be one of the most controversial items in this
analysis: James received a letter from one who he thinks is the love
of his life. He finds Maria, who proves to be the person he loved all
along. So, logically, you could say that the cut letter (the one that
he has in the beginning) was from Maria all along. But, first things
first: James sees this woman that looks exactly like Mary, "only hair
and clothes are different". This is where you notice how shallow James
is. He pictures this woman as a hot girl, with slutty clothes and
weird hair dye. This is not something that he notices only on the
first sight... he keeps going with that thought later on. There's a
few things to analyze in their talking. "I'm no ghost", says Maria.
The woman comes with a whole new personality, a personality that James
wanted Mary to have all along. She is forward. The ghost saying means
that Maria is tempting James to believe that he can have her, to make
him believe that she's real. To make him believe that a woman like her
- a MARY like her - could exist. Or could it? Now, things start to get
weird. As you're about to leave, Maria stops you and accuses you of
abandoning her. This is leading James to the truth, right away --
which is one of Maria's reasons to be in Silent Hill. Now, she asks to
go with him... the argument she uses? The most shallow ever, and it
works: "I look like her, don't I?"... well, it's James. Not only that,
Maria also says the following: "Maybe you hated her", predicting the
truth again. James is going to be fooled, because Maria isn't as
perfect as he thinks.
17. PROTECT HER! - Well, shouldn't be Maria a representation of his
wife Mary? So, your actions on how you protect Maria during this time
being will have influence on your fate. You must protect her in the
streets. If you stay close to her and protect her all the time, the
closure of the game focuses on Maria and how she's cursed to live just
18. BOWLING WEIRDNESS - James hears a conversation between Laura and
Eddie. Knowing that Laura is a creation of Silent Hill, it's perfectly
understandable that she's visible for Eddie, as her personality is
also part of Eddie's dilemma (she curses and mocks him). Also, another
thing that proves her unreal status is the question that she asks him:
"So, why are you here?". She knows about the town. Now, we could
assume that all of that heard conversation is nothing but James'
subconscious. But, let's not do that, it would be a cheap shot. I
believe she really did talk to Eddie, but that doesn't make her real.
She is real in Silent Hill, to those who are called to Silent Hill.
Let's focus on the weird part of that conversation. Eddie asks Laura
if she found Mary yet. So, now we discover that Laura isn't the one
half who knows the truth (she doesn't know that James killed Mary).
The one who knows the truth (and should show that to James) is Maria.
Laura is in Silent Hill with her limitations, to mock James and make
him realize that he wasn't a good, loving husband. She is also looking
for Mary because, in Silent Hill, she gains life as a "real" (at least
physically) little girl, who has a purpose and a memory -- a false
memory, created for James to think about. She's trying to find Mary
because that is her innocent desire in the town: she doesn't know that
she's Mary's half... she just knows that James treated her badly and
is not a nice person. She doesn't know that he killed her, she's just
an innocent child. Laura was created and given life in Silent Hill.
She wants to find Mary not because the town led her to it, but because
those memories implied to her about Mary are constantly messing with
her mind, making her really think that she actually met a woman named
Mary in a terminal patient aisle (which is absurd enough). The town
gave her some evidences that James is a lousy husband, and she ended
up using those proofs to help her claim that she actually met Mary.
Always remember that the truth is held with Maria, not with Laura.
Laura HELPS you to find the truth, unintentionally. She was created to
mess with your life and call you names, in a simple way of puttin' it.
19. HEAVEN'S NIGHT - "What does your mom do for a job?", K. Gordon
asks Maria's son. "She's a stripper in a Night Club!". Now, tell me if
that isn't a work of a DREAM, of a man who fantasizes too much? When
would James want a woman that takes off her clothes to tons of other
men? We don't know him, but that's just a shallow fantasy, a perfect
woman that he would like to TOUCH in a Night Club. Maria is the
essence of the perfect woman for James. It is the fun side that Mary
never gave that much importance. Maria is a woman who just wants to
have fun with James. Heaven's Night is the biggest indication that
Maria is James' sexual fantasy come true.
We get to Brookhaven Hospital by following Laura. She has some
evidence that Mary is there, so she enters there on her own. It's her
first unintentional help to James.
20. MARIA RESTS AT S3 - When James gets at the S3 Room, Maria asks him
to rest for a while. You can see that she starts giving signs of being
sick, which drives us to confirm that James will never have a perfect
Mary. It's interesting to notice her reason to the headache: "It's
just a hangover". She got too much into her personality :).
21. DIARY ON THE ROOF - How did the night come so quickly? Well,
whatever, James looks at this diary on the roof. Here, his selfish
roots are teased: along with some pain words, we read "Can it be such
a sin to run instead of fight?", meaning: James gave up taking care of
Mary and/or he's thinking about ending his own life; and the other
one: "It may be selfish, but that's what I want". No explanations
needed. This is one of the strongest suicide-themed events in the
whole game. It also traces a paradox on Angela's reasons: in her case,
it's not selfish to run. It's wise. You'll see why.
22. JAMES FINDS LAURA... - ... playing with some dolls, focusing on
her innocent side. This is the first time we learn that she never saw
any monsters ("why should I?"). That is because she is Mary's innocent
side, who just wants James to know that he treated her badly. Note
that every time Laura wants to say that he's a bad husband, she just
says it. She doesn't have any line of concept in her thoughts (unreal
nature), no arguments. That's how "robotic" her meaning feels like.
Also, she reminds him of his old personality when she says "You gonna
yell at me if I don't?".
23. THE LOCKED JAMES - Laura tricks him once more into another trap.
Claiming to go look for a letter from Mary, she leads James into a
room and locks him in. Not only that, he faces three monsters that
appear to be inside cages, and hanged... which drives us to the issue
of Mary's death (she died and was trapped in her disease condition,
with James avoiding any care).
24. THE "ALTERNATE" SILENT HILL - Many people believe that James
visits the Alternate world in Silent Hill twice (in the hospital and
on the hotel). I'd have to disagree with that. I'll explain the hotel
part later, but let's focus on telling that this Alternate Silent Hill
is your regular alternate, just like in Silent Hill 1 and 3. This was
not created by James' mind. As much as Harry and Heather live this
alternate SH, it doesn't come from their minds. These are remains of
events in Silent Hill 1 -- why? Doesn't matter to this story focus,
but it would give out a great analysis. If you have any opinions on
that, just send me an e-mail and we'll discuss it. ;)
25. MARIA ON BASEMENT - Maria starts acting like Mary all over again.
With her fragileness and fear, she screams at James for abandoning
her, again (much like on the park, only, this time, she's rude). She
also mentions James' other self issue when she says "Don't ever leave
me alone" and "You're supposed to take care of me". Other than that,
Maria also feels that she must find Laura (without even knowing her,
just to add... which proves their connection). That's simple, in my
opinion: Maria knows that she's not being able to make James figure
out the truth yet. What's her main purpose of being in Silent Hill?
Check your pocket analysis. She's always trying to tell James the
truth, but can't make him figure it out. So, what does she plan? She
wants to follow Laura, as she may help her with that thing. She feels
that Laura may find an innocent way to make James remember that he
killed Mary... which is what happens, since we follow Laura to the
hospital and then on the Hotel -- two of the most important places in
the plot. Of course it's up to Maria to take care of Laura... they are
the same friggin' person. But, if that didn't work, Maria already had
a backup plan. Hint: you're about to get to that loooong hallway. She
did try to show him the truth by being slutty and showing him his true
desires... but she didn't try to show him that he did murder Mary. Not
26. TRICK OR TREAT - One of my favorite parts in the game. The main
conversation is pure "James": about murder and punishment. One of the
questions is about a gruesome murder. I believe this is not directly
relevant to the plot (as the "prize" tells us), but it had a reference
to murder, so I considered important. And, it has our favorite stupid
serial-killer: Walter Sullivan, who's also related to James.
27. PYRAMID HEAD KILLED MARIA! - The first real reflection of James'
unfair murder happens here. In a long, long hallway, you're supposed
to protect Maria from... yourself. Pyramid Head. Now, you may reach
that elevator in time, but Maria ends up being killed. This is Maria's
first attempt of showing James the truth about the murder.
Alternate Silent Hill Streets
28. JAMES GETTING OUT OF BROOKHAVEN - "I couldn't protect Maria. Once
again, I couldn't do anything... Mary, did you really die three years
ago, or is this just your way of taking?". I believe this talks alone.
James is starting to understand something -- that he did not protect
his wife while she was sick. He was not good for her.
29. NEELY'S BAR, ALTERNATE - My favorite quote in the game is the one
found here, and it's the one that mostly explains this theory alone.
"If you want to see Mary, you should just die. But you might be
heading to a different place than Mary, James". This is the perfect
accusation. James IS going to hell for what he did, and will never
find Mary again. Why? Because he did not kill her for love. He killed
her to get his life back. He murdered her. If it had been a simple
"euthanasia", he'd be free, right...? Well, then.
30. THE ABYSS - This is another well-known topic of discussion. We
read this on the "direcktor's" message: "He who is not bold enough to
be stared at from across the Abyss is not bold enough to stare into it
himself". Let's understand this. What the director is talking about
(by the way, one crazy director) is a mask. James did not have the
courage to face the Abyss (the fact that he is a murderer). So, he
ends up fooling himself. James is not able to look into the Abyss
because, in order to do that, he needs to be stared from across it.
Meaning: if James can't be true to his wife or anyone else, he'll
never be true to himself. There are both sides to look at. "Part of
that Abyss is in the Society", he says. Well, this obviously means
"Historical Society" and it's there my next observations -- including
one from the Abyss.
The Toluca Prison
31. THE SIREN (?) - The way to the Toluca Prison starts in the
Historical Society. When we get there, we look at these paintings from
Silent Hill, plus one of Pyramid Head, which indicates that the
executioner's image dates from back when. We hear scary sounds down
the stairs. James decides to go down the stairs. We hear a SIREN
(note: not the same kind as the famous Silent Hill siren). This brings
an even bigger connection to James and PH, referring to them as the
same evil entity -- called on the same way (not through the same
device, but with a loud sound). By the way, the whole infinite stairs
thing is meant to be James' way of facing the Abyss for the first
time. His first step into recalling his true actions.
32. SCREWY HOLES - The place seems to be a prison under the sewers,
judging by all the smelly water that runs around the place. Going
forward, you must follow a sequence of some very doubtful holes to
jump into. I didn't jump in that hole on my first playthrough. I was
scared, I only did it when I saw that there was nothing else to do.
This is James facing the Abyss again. Going under. Jumping into a dark
hole means taking risks to find the truth. Notice that the place
starts to get screwy, with the rooms upside-down or facing other
directions. This is a prediction of the Labyrinth, which shows that
James' mind is changing, and he is beginning to understand that not
everything is like he thought. His mind is finally open.
33. EDDIE KILLED AGAIN - In the prison entrance, we see Eddie holding
a Revolver, a man killed with bullet holes in his head and the fatty
still claiming to have killed him; "he made fun of me". He then pulls
a Laura on James and tells him that he was only joking about having
murdered the man. Which, obviously, is not true. This shows James that
Eddie's nature is not normal, and James starts connecting to him right
now -- when he's beginning to understand stuff beyond reason. Remember
that he just jumped down the Abyss.
34. HOTEL ON FIRE - This predicts the Hotel existing only in James'
memory. The hotel that he enters is nothing but the Hotel as it
existed when he and his wife were there. The painting tells us what
happened to the hotel, to get the conclusion of what does it look like
35. NO MAN'S LAND - Well, this is when James' mind gets really screwed
up. His mind created a literal Labyrinth, from which he must find his
way out. We can tell for sure that this place does not exist in real
life and is only a fragment of James' mind, working on a solution to
the puzzle he's been through. Hence, a mind Labyrinth. The exit will
have him learn something.
36. PYRAMID HEAD'S ROOM - James faces his twin antagonist twice in the
Labyrinth. One of these times are in a round corridor, with the
Mandarin monsters chasing James. So, he goes around that corridor and
enters what looks like a... how to describe this? A psychotic's room.
There are corpses, there are those cages used to wrap the Hanged
monsters in the Hospital, there is a huge fan (as in all SH's) and the
room is red. More importantly, James finds the weapon that Pyramid
Head was using before -- the great Knife. There is the chance for
James to truly understand that he is a murderer just like Pyramid Head
-- selfish and without any feelings attached to said act. On the
moment you read "You got a Great Knife", James faces his greatest
connection with Pyramid Head's existance nature. They're both the
same, so... why not use the same weapons? There's also an interesting
connection - credit goes to an user on the SH2 boards at GameFAQs.com
- between Angela's Knife and the Great Knife itself (the last one
being Pyramid Head's "version" of Angela's Knife).
37. THE CELL CONVERSATION - For James' surprise, there sits Maria at
the prison cell. She's alive and kicking. This conversation is the
most important in the whole game, as it clears James' shallow nature.
Maria points out that she is NOT Mary (to make James believe that she
is real and could be his), making James grow a little hope inside of
him, when she mentions a videotape they made at the hotel. She does
this because it's what the real James wants to come back: real
memories. Maybe, by doing this, she has triggered the Hotel in James'
memory, as we see it. Then, she says like four or five things that
indicate James' shallow self ("I am... if you want me to be"; "Touch
me"; "See... I'm real"; "It doesn't matter who I am"; and the most
obvious one, "I can't do anything through these bars"). One of the
game's lessons (about James' true self) is being taught now. He says
that he'll be right back, which triggers Maria to die again later.
Why? Because he insists on trying to save and protect her. Doesn't he
understand? That's the reason why Mary is so upset with him! He didn't
protect her. There is nothing he can do about that. There is no
turning back. Maria being Mary's representation, she knows that James
won't be back in time to protect her. What happens? She tries to tell
him the truth again -- she dies.
38. THE NEWSPAPER - Dated "today" (not a year ago, nor three years
ago, but today, as in "three years" after Mary's death), the newspaper
tells us a story about this man, Mr. Orosco, who had a history of
drunkeness and violence with his daughter. He died. By the way: isn't
sad to notice that Angela STILL has visions of her father, even though
he is dead? She doesn't even know that he is dead, because she
mentioned him as "missing" in the cemetery. Well, as she just entered
the next room, she must've read that paper. God rest his stupid, cruel
and selfish soul. Now, for the "We hate Dood" part: I don't believe
that Angela murdering her father is relevant to the story. To me, her
theme, her focus, her objective is plain and simply to obtain a permit
to die. Notice that almost all of her conversations with James involve
suicide. But, this is not the time. Anyway: the newspaper could be
interpreted in the following manners: 1) Angela killed her father with
a sharp utensil (Knife), which does _not_ make her a sinner, given the
circumstances. However, it still made her guilty; 2) since the paper
dates from "today", it's a preview of the fight that's about to
happen. Had Angela kept the Knife, things could end ugly and her
reason to be in Silent Hill would be ruined. "And how do you explain
the blood?" Well, the same way that I do about James' letter from
Mary: it appears to guide him towards his destiny. Angela's Knife...
39. THE UTERUS - We enter this room that looks like a coccoon; an
uterus, if you will (those round things remind penetration movements,
don't they?). There is a monster trying to rape Angela Orosco, the
daughter of that man listed above. Well, that's not her dad, as he
died... this is a monster, and Angela sees the monster as her father.
Simple enough. What James sees is a man merged to a door, or a bed.
After you kill the monster, she starts doubting James' integrity:
"What do you want? I know, you're only after one thing"; "You could
just force me, beat me up like he always did"; and ends the
conversation saying "You only care about yourself, anyway. Didn't want
her around anymore. Probably found someone else", which is what really
happened. Angela considers that James is one selfish, perverted man,
and he keeps going with the false personality. You know, you could
easily say that this theory about James' new personality is made-up
(well, it is!), but there _are_ evidences for that: like the Abyss,
Maria's existance and his murder. Now, remember Angela's objective
listed in the pocket analysis. It's the same as Maria's -- to make him
remember that he is not this James portrayed here. But that's ok, he's
about to kill Eddie... :)
40. MARIA DIES AGAIN - That pretty much is all explained in the cell
conversation topic (#037). James' insistance on trying to protect
Maria got him that.
41. CATACOMB - Well, here we see several tombstones for different
people that really existed, like Walter Sullivan - the murderer. Also,
there is a Miriam K. that is labeled as "Traitor" in the stone. If not
that weird, we get to see three empty holes: one for James, one for
Eddie and one for Angela. Also, did anyone notice that the empty
tombstones are only for those who are - according to this analysis -
real characters in the game? There is no tombstone for Maria or Laura.
So you could say "ah, but Laura doesn't have a tombstone because she's
not a sinner!"... and is Angela a sinner? I don't think so. That
tombstone is not there because she did something bad... it's just an
allowance for her to kill herself. Remember that graves relate to
nothing but death. The meaning is unknown. It's like your bed calling
you when you're sleepy. Cruel analogy.
42. EDDIE FIGHT - James reaches Eddie, as he killed some dude that
made fun of him with his eyes. And a few more. James gets crazy.
"James, you can't just kill someone 'cause of the way they looked at
you!", he says. Eddie's response is beautiful: "Don't get all holy on
me, James. This town called you, too. You and I are the same". This
practically puts James in the killer level. Then, the most stupid line
in the history of videogames (well, maybe the "Jill Sandwich" quote in
Resident Evil gets that prize, but this one must come in second):
"From now on, anyone that makes fun of me, I'll kill 'em! Just like
that!". The line is followed with: "Eddie, have you gone nuts?"
(sitcom laughs take place), and the battle starts. Then, we move to
another room (ironically full of "dead meat"), where Eddie says
something pretty cool -- "Doesn't matter if your ugly, pretty, smart,
dumb. It's all the same once yer dead". When James finally kills
Eddie, he just loses it. "I KILLED A HUMAN BEING!", he says. Well,
James, you did kill another one. This happening, along with, like, 41
other ones, exists for you to get in your stupid head that you killed
your wife for a selfish reason and IS a murderer, just like Eddie. :)
Also, notice that the weapon that Eddie is very weak to is primarily
the Great Knife, which puts James in the same level as Pyramid Head
again. If Pyramid Head is one to punish for someone's sins, James had
just punished Eddie like PH, with his own weapon.
Eddie's part in the story ends now. James knows that he's a murderer -
- but he doesn't know that he already _was_ one. That's why Maria's
After that boring boat trip, you finally get to the best part in the
whole game: the Hotel where James and Mary stayed when they were in
Silent Hill. Enjoy, this is the most beautiful area in any SH game. A
message to those who think Laura is real: I'm not trying to bash that,
but how the hell did Laura get to the hotel alone? O.O
43. MARY'S LETTER - Behold, the longest post of the Story Analysis.
Did you notice that Laura has been mentioned too much and appeared too
few? Well, that's the concept of a perfectly well-written character.
We face this little girl for the third or fourth time here, and she's
more sensitive about James -- because her innocence made that happen.
Mary hands a letter to Laura (remember that all the evidences that
Laura gets are made-up - not the facts, the _evidences_, like the
letters -, for her to tell James and frame his actions as an awful
husband... remember, also, that Laura's innocence made her believe
that she's real and those evidences are for HER, not for James). This
letter tells us that Laura hates James for how he has been treating
his wife lately, and the so commented info about her birthday. Also,
this letter doesn't tell Laura that Mary is going to die. It says that
she'll be in a quiet, beautiful place, and that she is just "gone".
Laura's innocence led her to believe that Mary isn't dead at all, and
that she's right there in the Hotel.
Birthday issue: I don't think I should bring this up to the analysis,
since it's been proven to be of great controversy... but, well, it's
more than known that Mary didn't actually die 3 years ago -- she died,
LIEKOMG, last week. As cute and scary as this idea sounds, I DON'T
BELIEVE IT. There, I said it. I don't buy it. One lousy week is a too
short period of time for a person to _develop_ a mental state that
would eventually evolve into memory repression. Besides, Laura is
absurdly unreal to prove us anything about real dates. I've always
considered that she's a manifestation of three years ago - when Mary
supposedly died (notice that she might play a piano that no longer
exists) -, and her innocence tricked her into believing that she
actually turned 8 last week... when it might not be true. "Last week"
could've been three years ago. But... let's leave it at that: I've
offered my view, and I'll tell you that it's irrelevant to the plot
analysis. Because it really is. We're talking about James' actions and
what do they mean. Moving on. ;)
44. THE VIDEOTAPE - That videotape mentioned by Maria appears on a
note in the Reception desk. It says: "Mr. James Sunderland, the tape
you forgot here is been kept in the office, (...)". Then, you find
45. THE ROOM 312 - The long wait is over. After experiencing hell in
the hotel with items on the shelf, we get to the Room 312. It is a
normal Hotel room, with a clear view outside. James watches the
videotape, which shows Mary having her first signs of the illness
(meaning that this was their last good memory, as Mary's sickness
launched ever since) and, of course, James killing her. Now _that_ was
no euthanasia. That was cold-blood murder. You know, maybe I judge
James' actions too much when I say that he is a murderer... it's just
that I can't imagine myself killing someone I love. OR anyone. But,
well, I'm not James, he's clearly a murderer. He suffocates her with a
pillow and we even get to see her struggle a little (the video is not
that clear). What does this mean? Does this mean that he's a pervert?
OHMYGOD! No. It means that James didn't love Mary. That's all. The
whole sex cover-up is there to indicate shallow actions, and to point
James' true selfish nature. A need is selfish. _That_ need is insanely
NOW -> James' world just falls.
His true self is revealed.
And so, Maria and Laura's prime objectives are accomplished here. They
led James to the truth. With a little help of the lucky item, but
whatever. Laura helped him without knowing and he finally made it to
the end of that videotape. He FINALLY understands that he's a
murderer. He finally goes back to his old selfish personality, as he
(as shocked as he was) acted like he really understood all of that.
Meaning: he didn't go berserk "I killed a human being" again. This is
the real James that appeared, now. His guilt for killing someone over
selfishness has finally beaten him. That's why Mary was waiting for
him in the Room 312. For him to find out the truth. To remember the
way he treated her and killed her. He needed their one LAST good
memory to interact with the real evidences of his murder.
Laura enters the room. Destined to find Mary, with hope in her heart,
she hears something from the one man she hates: "I killed her". Now,
Laura plays her part in the story. All she did until now is tied to
this occurance: "You didn't care about her! She was always waiting for
you! Why? I hate you, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you...". She told
James what he needed to hear. Plus, she'll never find Mary again. So,
we can tell for sure that:
Laura's part in the story ends now.
James finally woke up.
46. THE ACTUAL STUFF - After James discovers his true self, after
Laura and Maria's mission are accomplished, James sees the Hotel as it
"almost is" right now: destroyed and soaking wet from the Fire Dept.
The water has runned down to the basement, which is more of a pool
right now (a very badly-designed pool). There are Fire Dept. banners
blocking your way to some rooms. This is simple to understand, as
James has just brought back from his false personality, his "false
world" he created to dodge his past actions.
47. ANGELA'S ASHES - We finally get to see Silent Hill in Angela's
point of view. Destined to walk on the stairs of doom (her home,
probably), she confuses James with her mother. When she feels his
face, she knows it's James. Even so, she talks to him, wanting her
knife back. "Keeping it for you, huh?". "No, I'd never kill myself!".
Of course not. You're a selfish man. Even if you KEPT and examined it
several times, you'd end "in water", which still means a selfish act.
Angela then says: "Will you take care of me? Love me? (James' selfish
thoughts come now. He doesn't want another wife to take care. He
learned his lesson, he wants to be alone now, in peace)... that's what
I thought". Then she goes up the flames, in one of the most beautiful
game scenes ever designed. Did Angela die? Well, I believe so. That's
what she was looking for, from the very beginning. And she had reasons
for that. Living the way she was, the best solution would be to cut
evil from the source.
Angela's part in the story ends now.
48. DUAL PYRAMID HEAD FIGHT - Maria is on a platform, upside-down. Two
Pyramid Heads (two murders, two PHs) are now staring at James, as if
they were just waiting for him, to then do something. Maria screams,
and one of the Pyramid Heads kill her. Again. Then, James just drops
on his knees. Now that he has finally awakened, he understands that
James: "I was weak. That's why I needed you.... needed someone to
punish me for my sins.... but that's all over now.... I know the
truth.... now it's time to end this."
Now, here, we may have a doubt of who was he talking about. I believe
he was talking about both Pyramid Head and Maria, because they were
used to punish him for his sins. Now it was time to end this... and he
did. Why were two Pyramid Heads? Well, that's up to you. Many people
believe that another one showed up in order to punish him for Eddie's
death (like me), others say it's just to make the game cool, others
say it's just to raise his guilty/sinner condition after watching the
whole videotape thing. I believe it's the Eddie one (and it's the most
relevant to the theory). Well, James defeats the PHs and doesn't need
them anymore, because he already took off that mask. He is the old,
selfish James. By the way, the song in this fight is the most
apocalyptical song I've ever heard in my life. Even more apocalyptical
than the "2001: A Space Odyssey" one. After defeating 'em, he gains
two Eggs -- each one representing one of his murders (Scarlet =
recent, Eddie; Rust-colored = old, Mary).
And so, Pyramid Head's part ends now.
49. HALLWAY CONVERSATION - This is the perfect ending for this game,
at least in my opinion. By reading this or not, you should be able to
understand every single feeling and fact in the whole story.
Mary: "What do you want, James?"
James: "I, uh, I brought you some flowers..."
Mary: "Flowers? I don't want any damn flowers. Just go home already."
As far as I understood, Mary got tired of how pitiful she was looking
with the disease (she really was sad knowing she's about to die and no
one has been able to do anything to help her). BUT, also, she was
tired of having James, a husband that doesn't take care of her and
thinks that an action of love in a situation like that is to bring
flowers. Of course that's wrong.
Mary: "James.... Wait.... please don't go.... stay with me. Don't
leave me alone. I didn't mean what I said. Please James.... tell me
I'll be okay. Tell me I'm not going to die. Help me..."
She's desperate. She is begging for him to understand her disease
condition, and that all she needs is James himself. I can't imagine
Mary's face when James left that room; it just makes me want to cry. I
think... a true husband that theoretically loves his wife would never
abandon her like he did. No matter what.
But, on the other hand, you begin to understand James' feelings too.
Imagine yourself entering a hospital room every single day for years,
to see a person that made you happy for so long. That's why I said
that in the beginning of the analysis: you're not supposed to judge
James' selfishness... you're supposed to understand it. This is also
why I didn't analyze the Recording. James had just asked for how long
did his wife have to breathe. It doesn't matter if the doctor
"mentioned" three years of disease. What did matter were James'
feelings at that time, not the clue for "Mary's death time". Those did
not mean feelings of love from one person to another. If he loved
Mary, he wouldn't have given up taking care of her. He said like
someone that cared for Mary... but he did not ACT like that. I still
think it's irrelevant whether she died three years or not, but I just
can't believe that she could have possibly died last week. There's
just too much to cover.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
And so, this brief analysis reaches its end. As I said in the
character section, the conclusions of this story are written in your
pocket analysis (or that section) that you printed (or copied to
another document, or neither). Every fact that has been written here
is confirmed as conclusion in each character's analysis.
What is James? Is he a sexual predator? Absolutely not. Is he a
pervert? Not at all. He's a man who mixed up basic needs and laughter
for love and didn't realize it until life played a trick on him. The
end of this story, the part where it's up to multiple conclusions, is
above. All that comes after, including the last boss, are just meant
for gameplay itself, to give out multiple endings to unlock. I don't
really enjoy studying this, because I feel like one ending might end
up more truthful than the other... and it just hurts to take any of
the conclusions as "canon". You'll see why I said this, right here:
E N D I N G S
To "analyze" the endings, just grab the character analysis (pocket
analysis), check the involved items to gain that ending (below) and
compare them with the characters. This has no relevance to the theory
whatsoever, it's just a fun (and, well, useful) thing to do with your
pocket analysis that you'll surely throw out in the trash. For
instance: in order to understand the "In Water" ending, just look at
what do you need to accomplish during the game (thanks to Matt Clark's
Endings FAQ for those below):
- examine Angela's knife often
- read the diary on the hospital roof
- read the second message to James in Neely's Bar
- stay at low health
- listen to the headphone and hallway conversation
What do we get from that? By examining Angela's knife, James thinks
more and more about Angela's way of taking the suffering: she wants to
kill herself. By examining a suicide weapon, James' chances of killing
himself grow. If you read the diary on the roof, you're going to
notice two messages: "Can it be such a sin to run instead of fight?"
and "It may be selfish, but that's what I want"... both meaning a
leaning to giving up life. Reading the second message at Neely's Bar
gives James a feeling that he doesn't have much to do anymore. He's
about to go to hell, what else should he do? Well, staying at low
health is pretty self-explanatory; you just don't care about your life
anymore. Finally, listening to the headphone and hallway conversation,
your guilt is added to those elements accomplished before, so... James
practically makes his decision to kill himself there.
This is the selfish ending, but it's somewhat fair when we consider
how it's one life for another. It's a noble attitude if James has in
mind the fact that he's a murderer; but, if all he thought about was
that he still wanted to be with Mary, I would call it selfish. Now do
that with the other endings.
- try to return to Mary's cell after she's dead
- stay close to Maria
- revisit the S3 room when she's resting
- make sure Maria receives very little damage
- examine Mary's picture and letter
- bump into Maria
- examine Angela's knife
If you don't feel like doing the thing, I'll explain it. Should you
stay close to Maria and protect her, you are obviously getting a
second chance to take care of your """loved""" one. As we see in the
ending, James really _is_ receiving a second chance; because Maria
WILL start developing Mary's disease all over again. At least, that's
what we're hinted to. So, it's up to him to take really good care of
her this time. He chooses to be happy with Mary's nice and fun side,
even though he knows that she'll end up getting ill. This is the
ending where James really concerns about Maria's health, besides
remembering Mary's best memories together. This is a beautiful ending,
in my opinion. It's the love ending. (Of course, let's hope that James
actually _does_ take care of her this time...! At least he knows the
- listen to the entire hallway conversation
- examine Mary's picture and letter once in a while
- stay always at max health
- stay close to Maria
This is the hard one. By choosing Laura, James realizes, in my
opinion, that Mary was right all along and needed to warn him; even
though it was by Laura. So, by "adopting" the snotty little brat,
James is just accepting a new way of punishment -- to stay with the
side of his wife that he most hated, to the rest of his life. It's
another noble action, but... this is the punishment ending.
So, that's simple, after all: every single ending just depends on
which character did James give more attention to during the whole game
-- Angela, Maria or Mary (Laura).
I don't believe it has any actual relation with the story focus that
Silent Hill 2 gives out, but... let's go. By picking up four items
throughout the game, James will resurrect Mary to start over. That's
completely wrong, in my opinion, from the very beginning: he can't,
won't ever start over with the same Mary. The game has taught us that
guilt consumed James, and bringing back his wife does not change the
fact that he, well, murdered her.
C O N C E P T C L O S U R E
* * * S O O N ! * * *
This is where the concepts I've used in this theory are explained with
relevance to James' quest. You'll see my view on the subject and
understand why did I use that particular idea to draw conclusions on
James' actions. While it's not yet written - might take a while -, you
can take a peek at the themes that shall be used in this new section:
F A Q
Here, I'll post a few questions that usually appear in my mailbox, or
that [somehow] have been brought to my attention. :) They're mostly
related with the nature of this analysis. If you have any other
questions, feel free to send 'em: ren.dood[at]gmail[dot]com.
Q: What is this theory about, after all?
The main concept is simple: James' love for Mary - as he believed
himself - was false.
Q: Are you even majored in Psychology? How can you use Freud?
I'm majored in Advertising & Marketing, and Psychology is pretty
important to study consumers' purchasing and commercial personality
patterns. I've had Psychology for one year, and I'm not exactly a
professional. My reference to Freud - who I don't really "dig", by
the way - was merely a way to direct James' actions closer to a rooted
view on human nature. I could've used any other thinker-dude that had
the slightest degree of human nature study with focus on physical
needs. Not only that, the four needs that I've listed were learned
throughout the course and gathered by myself with proper relevance.
Credit my teacher! :P
Q: May I disagree with your theory?
Of course! Like I mentioned in the beginning, this is just _one_ way
of looking into this wonderful story. This is not, by any means, the
"true" version of events -- it's simply a theory. Yes, I do agree that
the most obvious scenarios (e.g. Angela murdering her father) are more
than plausible; however, considering the _focus_ I've given to the
story, they're irrelevant. I believe that the story has much more to
do with James than we might think.
Q: May I send you an e-mail with my view on the story?
Surely! They're usually my favorites.
Q: Why do you portray James as a sex addict maniac?
I don't. Again, I'll mention it: I've traced a pretty long track to
define James' supposed love for Mary in Silent Hill 2. It travels from
mere survival needs to entertainment and happiness. Sex is just a way
that the _game_ found to tell us that James replaced an idealistic
vision of love - one that he was part of - with his personal, shallow
happiness. It's a simple metaphor. I've use sex as a channeling line
of thought because, well, it's pretty much there. There _are_ tons of
references, and I didn't choose to ignore them. People pity James too
much and simply forget to look at what he did... that, in my opinion,
shouldn't ever happen. Angela, however, sees James as a sex addict
maniac; mainly because she mirrors his sole existence on her father's
actions. Silent Hill 2 is all about characters' actions/consequences,
and not entirely about their personalities, as it's much believed.
Q: Are you aware that your theory contradicts official sources?
Yes. But, for the Nth time, this is only one way of looking at the
story basing on what the _game_ tells us. Therefore, I'm excluding
possible translation mistakes, facts officially disregarded by the
crew, bits of information that might only be found in Japanese
guidebooks and whatever else. This analysis is based on Silent Hill 2
-- the game.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Thanks, Contact and Stuff
I'd like to thank every single person who had the patience to read
this small theory and give me their vote of trust and support. Thank
you very much, I truly appreciate that! Also, I'd really like to
thank Matt Clark for his Endings FAQ... without that, I wouldn't even
be close to listing the endings' points.
INTERESTING FACT: I don't think I've ever written the word
"analysis" so much in my entire life. Or "James". Or "led her to
Silent Hill, its characters, music and every single name mentioned
here are all under Konami's copyrights.
If you want to contact me, no matter what the subject is, just
send an e-mail to ren.dood[at]gmail[dot]com and I'll be glad to
answer every single message. I'm not famous, you know... :)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _
"Well then, everybody... thanks for tuning in!
See you again sometime! Bye-Bye!"
_ _ _ _ _ _ _
November 10th, 2006
July 2nd, 2005
February 21st, 2004 (c) Da Dood