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Cafe5to2 Waitress
 Post subject: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism

Missing since: 07 Jul 2009
Notes left: 294
Last seen at: Silent Hill - Downpour
Whelp let's get into it!

As far as symbolism goes with the monsters there are a couple I'm not too sure about.

The Doll - I'm assuming is the fragile relationship between Murphy and his wife. Murphy destroys the dolls by Breaking them, much like he broke the relationship between himself and his wife.

Prisoners / Juggernauts - Not sure I feel there is a whole lot of symbolism with them. I thought they were pretty lazily put together since it seems right now it only symbolizes Murphys time in prison.

Screamer - Has to be symbolism of his wife. Manifested anger from being thrown in prison / divorce. She is also seen later in the game cradling an invisible baby which is pretty much the monkey wrench in my "Charlie is adopted" theory.

Weeping Bat - Really not sure. Seems like another location monster.

Wall Monster - Manifestations of the murder Murphy has committed.

Hammer Man - Judge and Executioner.

Howard - He reminds me of alessya / devil from the Silent Hill movie. He's obviously not good because he knows what's going on and decides not explain / be vague but he's not bad either because he guiding Murphy in the direction he needs to go to find the truth.

----

I really want to know what's up with the Orphanage / Mysterious girl. They are really mysterious.

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Just Passing Through
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 16 Jun 2009
Notes left: 125
For the Weeping Bats I remember the developers saying they symbolized solitude and confinement.
There was a theory I read on the Dolls that I really liked about how the Doll would symbolize guilt and the shadows symbolize revenge, and how the shadows (revenge) distract Murphy from the real threat, the Doll (guilt).


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Cafe5to2 Waitress
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism

Missing since: 23 Jun 2011
Notes left: 161
Last seen at: Silent Hill
The monsters sucked this game. Not only were there a small handful, but they were over-used. The prisoners were only there for the prison level, just like the nurses were for the hospital. There wasn't much creativity into designing the monsters.

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Brookhaven Receptionist
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Dec 2009
Notes left: 856
Last seen at: New York
The SH Champion wrote:
The monsters sucked this game. Not only were there a small handful, but they were over-used. The prisoners were only there for the prison level, just like the nurses were for the hospital. There wasn't much creativity into designing the monsters.


Yeah, I agree. It's got just a small handful of so-so monsters, the main problem is they're over-used. That's my main problem. With SH2, you also had a very small handful of monsters but they were used within the context of the game much better IMO. I didn't have a HUGE problem with the monsters, as they are one of the few gripes a have with the game. Everything else was surprisingly good. But damn, the monsters were more effective in Shattered Memories.

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Cafe5to2 Waitress
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 30 Mar 2006
Notes left: 215
I was actually very happy with the Dolls. I looked at them in a more literal/sexual/prisoner context. They look like blowup dolls, Murphy even comments on it in the Centennial building. Now when you compare them to the prison backstory the Shade version of the doll is more like a memory of women from when your in the slammer. You "beat it" out but it just keeps coming back, where as if you have the woman (doll) you can stop remembering the closeness of a woman and actually be with her.

$0.02

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Cafe5to2 Waitress
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 29 Jan 2008
Notes left: 265
I was pretty okay with all of the monsters on a design basis and mechanic basis. The dolls were pretty damn creative, in terms of how they're fought, and if you don't have the UV light when you encounter them it is pretty damn scary. I found the most monstrous in line with past titles to be the Weeping Bats, though.

As far as symbolism goes and placement, yeah, they definitely didn't feel quite Silent Hilly enough but it's difficult for me to place why. Originally my friend and I were thinking they were too human and I can still agree with this on terms of the prisoners especially (they look STRAIGHT out of The Suffering) but then I realized that can't quite be it. Partly, yes, but not the whole reason. I'm still struggling to decide what it is about them that's off putting as far as Silent Hill goes but it might be the fact that literally all of them have eyes. In most cases, when there's humanoid monsters, even if their body shape is completely intact, there's something missing and dehumanized about them for a lack of facial features. This isn't true for ALL Silent Hill monsters, in particular the nurses (in the first and third games the nurses all had normal faces and even the doctors in the first game did too).

As far as symbolism goes, I'm still thinking but I am REALLY fond of the theory Dark Shadow mentioned for the Dolls. That seems to fit really well. A friend of mine also read somewhere that people were thinking the Screamers represented "murder victims and prison sirens" and I'm inclined to directly disagree. I don't have a specific theory myself on their symbolism, but what is in the first post about them seems to make a hell of a lot more sense than that.

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Gravedigger
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 27 Sep 2009
Notes left: 491
I really liked the dolls, the screamers were interesting, those prisoners can go screw themselves. Hated that enemy design wise. I honestly went "Wait, seriously? This is an enemy?" when I first encountered one.

Hammer man looks way too much just like a guy in a suit, and being able to actually play as him and all that shit just...ugh. It's like if you took Pyramid Head and removed any sense of subtlety.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
Dolls-Symbolize the broken relationship between Murphy and Carol, and their shadows show that he is blind to his guilt (since they're invisible unless in UV light).

Weeping Bats-Symbolize Murphy's desire to be isolated and on his own.

Minions/Juggernauts-Symbolize Murphy's fear of prison. They're both also restrained on their faces, showing how Murphy has been locked away in prison and he's also restrained by his guilt. Their twitching heads and manic actions could also show Murphy's manic desire for revenge against Napier.

Screamer-Probably symbolize how his wife is angry with him and their ability to grab onto him show that he's not free from his guilt.

Wall Corpses- Symbolize how Murphy is restrained by his guilt and lacks freedom from it.

Bogeyman
-Symbolizes Murphy's constant judging of others (He tells JP he never killed anyone who 'didn't deserve it'), as well as Napier and Sewell's judging of those they killed, which is why the Bogeyman shifts between their faces in the Monastery after Murphy kills him. The Bogeyman also symbolizes Murphy's desire to find the truth, and defeating him 'broke the cycle', showing that he was free from his guilt.

Howard-I think he serves as a sort of character like Louis is to Jacob in Jacob's Ladder . They both give the protagonists advice about overcoming their guilt and 'freeing your soul.'

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My Bestsellers Clerk
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 06 Nov 2011
Notes left: 401
Here's my analysis...ises...iss...is...whatever.

In my view, every monster in the game is a representation of things from Murphy's past pushed into the molds of prison and jail-like themes.

Screamer has decaying and mangled skin and basically shows Carol and Murphy's dead relationship (it looks like a dead body). The hands and attacks seem to relate to the fights they must have had. The action of holding onto Murphy is also representative of how he can't escape his guilt. The sirens and screams of this monster almost allude to a victim's screams, a police/prison siren, etc. I think it's worthy to note how angry and nagging the Screamer is (lol, nagging wife).

Dolls are my favorite. In relation to a prisoner's mind, they may appear to symbolize the action of mentally seeing women as sex objects. "Dolls" reminds me of sex/pleasure dolls or barbie dolls. They may be images of Murphy's repressed sexual desires in jail. Add to the fact that they look like trampy hookers (look at the original concept art! Tell me that's not a prostitute?!?!!?), and you have the manifestation of sexual aspects. Could Murphy have been sort of a misogynist? The appearance and attacks of the dolls suggest so, in my opinion. In relation to Murphy's life, they may represent his wife and their relationship, the shadows being aspects related to the Screamer's symbolism of Carol's anger towards Murphy and his guilt.

The Weeping Bats--symbolism for revenge as well as the mentality of a prisoner? The developers commented that the appearance is in relation to one who has been locked up in seclusion for a time. I see the symbolism as the revenge aspect of most of the characters in the game, sneaking up, attacking, running away/flying back up to the ceiling. Very stealthy, tall, etc. The upper body is extremely stronger than the thin legs, all of the weight is on its own shoulders. Interesting to note. The thing only has one eyeball, too, which reminds me of seeing thing from one view only and note through the eyes of others (another factor of revenge/grudging).


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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
teosoleil wrote:
In my view, every monster in the game is a representation of things from Murphy's past pushed into the molds of prison and jail-like themes.

Screamer has decaying and mangled skin and basically shows Carol and Murphy's dead relationship (it looks like a dead body). The hands and attacks seem to relate to the fights they must have had. The action of holding onto Murphy is also representative of how he can't escape his guilt. The sirens and screams of this monster almost allude to a victim's screams, a police/prison siren, etc. I think it's worthy to note how angry and nagging the Screamer is (lol, nagging wife).


That could be true. If you look at the concept art for it, you see a normal woman and then her monstrous form (screamer). Perhaps this plays on that?

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My Bestsellers Clerk
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 06 Nov 2011
Notes left: 401
^ I believe so. I hope to Samael that the monster designer for Downpour didn't intend for the creature on the right to be used as a monster, while the woman (Carol) on the left was originally intended to be used as a character. That would've ruined any researched-required symbolism. Maybe there was originally an intention to have the monster transform or something? Either way, I'm still unhappy with the concept art as well as the end monsters :\


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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
^Correct me if I'm wrong, but is that really supposed to be a picture of Carol or even concept art of her? If so, that would be pretty nice info! I'm not sure if I know of a real official picture of her. I've seen concept art with unknown women, but it never states if it of Carol, a scrapped character, or what.

I think that Screamer concept was super rad and freaky. I think the current one is kind of...(I think I said this before) like Michael Jackson (No offense to Michael, I love ya man!).

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Just Passing Through
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 08 Jan 2012
Notes left: 64
Last seen at: California
Aerith Gainsborough wrote:
^Correct me if I'm wrong, but is that really supposed to be a picture of Carol or even concept art of her? If so, that would be pretty nice info! I'm not sure if I know of a real official picture of her. I've seen concept art with unknown women, but it never states if it of Carol, a scrapped character, or what.

I think that Screamer concept was super rad and freaky. I think the current one is kind of...(I think I said this before) like Michael Jackson (No offense to Michael, I love ya man!).


I think it is her.
[Reveal] Spoiler:
In a flash back she is in bed in the hospital after giving birth to charlie

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
^
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Oddly, I didn't see that flashback. I must have missed it or overlooked it.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Jun 2009
Notes left: 2868
^It's kind of a subliminal flash, so I don't blame you for missing it.

I have an idea involving the orphanage. I think it symbolizes a return to Murphy's past. It's where he deals with his own guilt and anger by fighting the Bogeyman. The extras gallery confirms that Murphy grew up in an orphanage, but I don't think that it literally means he grew up at St. Maria's. For Murphy, an orphanage would represent beginnings, so it would be the perfect symbolic setting for exploring the events that led him on the path to prison and then to Silent Hill.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
^Yeah, I pointed that out in a thread, actually. He doesn't seem very familiar with Silent Hill, so maybe he's not even from there at all. Either way, he was an orphan. I was thinking, maybe that child they were mentioning in the orphanage that had the lobotomy done and used idiosyncratic language and was very isolated...maybe that's supposed to symbolize Murphy's current state. A lobotomy can sometimes cause one's mind to become a blank slate, so maybe that shows that Murphy doesn't know the truth. Also, the isolation fits him, as he seems to be a very isolated person and very reserved in manner. I'm just throwing ideas out there.

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SHH Cult Subscriber
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 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 10 May 2006
Notes left: 652
Last seen at: San Luis Obispo, CA
Keep in mind that the monsters could be an abstract representation of Anne's past as well. The Bogeyman is a prominent monster that Murphy seems to have no part in creating, and I believe it was entirely imagined by Anne without any conscious/unconscious reflection on part of Murphy.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
^Possibly, but as for the Bogeyman, the Bogeyman isn't just Anne's monster, it's also Murphy's. The Bogeyman is about judgment, and both of them have judged others and wanted revenge. The Bogeyman for Murphy is Napier and Sewell, but for Anne it's just Murphy. It changes depending on the person. Now, Anne could be the influence for the Bogeyman appearing, perhaps, since she's present, and she's taking an emotional toll on Murphy with her constant 'beating' on him. She could, quite possibly, be an essential part to his guilt coming out, but I'm not sure, though. I mean, we don't find out that she has any link to Murphy's past until the very end.

Sorry, I'm rambling!

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SHH Cult Subscriber
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 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism

Missing since: 26 Apr 2009
Notes left: 3219
Axel_98 wrote:
Prisoners / Juggernauts - Not sure I feel there is a whole lot of symbolism with them. I thought they were pretty lazily put together since it seems right now it only symbolizes Murphys time in prison.

I'm also not that much of a fan of this enemy, but it's not like things haven't been lame in terms of symbolism or meaning before. Fear of bugs, anyone?

Quote:
Howard - He reminds me of alessya / devil from the Silent Hill movie. He's obviously not good because he knows what's going on and decides not explain / be vague but he's not bad either because he guiding Murphy in the direction he needs to go to find the truth.

I don't think Howard is "not good", exactly. My personal theory until I get more information one way or another is that he was once a regular person that got involved/trapped in Silent Hill, and he has since become "part of" or "stuck in" the town in the way that Lisa was in SH1, and in the same way that Lisa stayed in SH to be tortured all the way up until SH3, I think Howard is stuck "delivering mail" (in a not literal SH-y sense) for the town, as he is now "part" of it. Or something. I dunno, I'll think more on this later. I'm honestly looking forward to hearing a lot of people's opinions on Howard here. Although this isn't really the right topic for it.


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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Monster / Character / Location Symbolism
     
         
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Missing since: 05 Jul 2010
Notes left: 3339
Last seen at: Kentucky
^Someone brought up the theory that perhaps Howard and Ricks follow sort of how Ending C goes, and that both of them are trapped in Silent Hill because they haven't yet finished their business there. I forget the thread, though. While that could be true, I kind of think they're both merely apparitions.

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