In Defense of the Maria Ending

James got a letter. From a dead person. Oh dear.

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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by AuraTwilight »

As long as morality is adjusable, we should perhaps consider what James did in the first place. Mary was going to die. She was in great pain, and was probably going to be in far more before her body finally gave out. If you saw an animal lying by the side of the road with its guts strewn around it, far beyond help but still awake and in agony, the most decent thing to do would be to put a pistol to its head and end its suffering cleanly and humanely. It could easily be argued that James was, rather than a murderer, a physician of last resort: the woman he loved was suffering, and he put an end to it. If morality can be adjusted to the point that suicide is a worthy atonement, then it can be adjusted to the point that euthanasia is an act of kindness. Either one can lead to a slippery slope, but that is a discussion for another time.
The primary division, here, which you've yet to account for, is CONSENT. Mary was killed against her will, and while we can understand or even justify it, Objective Morality may still deem that act as wrong.

It's generally written off as "Playing God." Mary's life did not belong to James, and Mary did not ASK James to put her out of her misery.
Redemption is obvious, since it is best defined as doing good to balance the scales for one's prior evil.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/M ... qualsDeath

Anyway, you're wrong. Redemption is defined as being absolved of past sins. There's not necessarily a need to do good works to balance any scales. Atonement of character is often sufficient, such as in the Christian faith.

In Silent Hill 2, it is very easy to argue that having resisted the temptation of escape, delusion, or further sin and personal interest, topped with a willingness to die and throw away his life, James has demonstrated a change in character and an absolution of his self-interested mindset. Not absolutely (since suicide is inherently selfish), but enough so as to be a demonstration of remorse over what he did.

In essence, he's committing seppuku.
It has been stated (by me among others) that if James were to leave Silent Hill, adopt Laura, and raise her lovingly as his own, that would qualify as redemption. Whether I think it happened in "Leave" is irrelevant, it doesn't happen in either "In Water' or "Maria".
You're right about the Leave ending. But I would argue that all four endings in the game possess redemptive possibilities. James isn't omniscient, so he doesn't have the ability to look at all his different endings and options and choose the one that would do the most Good to balance out his murder of Mary. It is his intentions that matter, not his deeds; and as the Otherworld demonstrates time and time again, INTENT is all it really seems to care about.
So, redemption is out. But what about atonement? To answer that question, examine the words of Mary herself: "You killed me, and you're suffering for it. It's enough, James." In other words, Mary declared that honor was satisfied, that James misery and guilt were sufficient atonement for his actions. If the offended party says it's enough, it's enough. Additionally, consider what James says next: "Without you, Mary, I've got nothing... now we can be together", which clearly states his motivations. He believes that he has lost everything, and has no reason to go on. He hopes to be reunited with Mary in death, though the warning in Bar Neely's suggests that it may not happen.
Unfortunately, the offending party dropping charges isn't always sufficient with the law of Man, and in many religions, certainly not in the case of God.
To conclude, and hopefully get the topic back on track, "In Water" and "Maria" are similar in a number of ways. Most notably, they both involve James seeking escape from reality. In "Maria", he chooses delusion. In "In-Water", he opts for death. There is no atonement or redemption in either.
I argue the exact opposite, just for devil's advocate. In In-Water, he pays the only currency he has to pay the fine for Mary's murder, and in Maria, he's given the chance of a do-over to make things right, and presumably take care of Maria better than he did Mary.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

The primary division, here, which you've yet to account for, is CONSENT. Mary was killed against her will, and while we can understand or even justify it, Objective Morality may still deem that act as wrong.

1. Mary told James that she wanted to die. James might have interpreted (rightly or wrongly) that as consent.
2. The most objective morality in existence is simple utilitarianism; the greatest good (or least harm) for the greatest number over the longest period of time. James's choices were to allow Mary to live (which would involve great suffering) or see her out of it (which would involve vastly reduced suffering). In thiose terms, James's actions were entirely acceptable. The concept that life, even horrific life, has inherent value is subjective morality, rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition. If your intention is to write that tradition out of the equation and the pagan deities of Silent Hill into it, their subjective morality may differ.

Note, incidentally, that I know as well as anyone that pure utilitarianism is extremely dangerous: it was a central aspect of the Nazi philosophy, and we all know how well THAT worked.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/M ... qualsDeath

And that fatal act of redemption accomplishes something, like (to use the picture as an example) Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader's decision to rescue Luke and kill the Emperor. If he had just let the Emperor fry Luke with force lightning and then chucked himself down the reactor shaft, that might have been atonement, but not redemption.

Under the same circumstances, if James had been killed by Abstract Daddy while trying to save Angela, that would have qualified as redemption. His suicide, since it accomplishes precisely nothing, does not.

In essence, he's committing seppuku.

Seppuku is not redemptive, it is an act of atonement, again because it accomplishes nothing positive. In Japanese tradition, it is typically carried out when a person dishonors himself. They've paid for the crime and died with their honor intact, but nothing more.

Unfortunately, the offending party dropping charges isn't always sufficient with the law of Man, and in many religions, certainly not in the case of God.

Suicide might be mandated in whatever faith the samurai practiced, but the Judeo-Christian tradition is what James would most likely have followed, regardless of his actual faith (if he had one). That tradition condemns suicide. Even in the Old Testament, where divine punishments were frequent and harsh, no one was ever ordered to kill himself. Offenders are generally expected to seek forgiveness. Case in point: Peter vs. Judas. Both sinned, both deeply regretted their actions. Judas killed himself, and remained condemned. Peter sought forgiveness, and was reinstated.

James isn't omniscient, so he doesn't have the ability to look at all his different endings and options and choose the one that would do the most Good to balance out his murder of Mary.

No, James isn't omniscient, but he's not stupid either. Killing himself accomplishes no "Good" whatsoever. It's either escape or self-imposed punishemnt. And since Mary has told him that his suffering is sufficient, and God (as James probably understands Him) doesn't condone suicide, that makes punishment rather unlikely. Especially when you factor in James's final dialogue in "In-Water", which has nothing about punishing himself in it. You are free to interpret it differently, of course.

I argue the exact opposite, just for devil's advocate. In In-Water, he pays the only currency he has to pay the fine for Mary's murder, and in Maria, he's given the chance of a do-over to make things right, and presumably take care of Maria better than he did Mary.

The four endings are so open to interpretation, a person can defend nearly anything. The statement "just for devil's advocate" suggests that you don't believe those arguments any more than I do. ;)
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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1. Mary told James that she wanted to die. James might have interpreted (rightly or wrongly) that as consent.
"You also told me...you didn't want to die..."
2. The most objective morality in existence is simple utilitarianism; the greatest good (or least harm) for the greatest number over the longest period of time. James's choices were to allow Mary to live (which would involve great suffering) or see her out of it (which would involve vastly reduced suffering). In thiose terms, James's actions were entirely acceptable. The concept that life, even horrific life, has inherent value is subjective morality, rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition. If your intention is to write that tradition out of the equation and the pagan deities of Silent Hill into it, their subjective morality may differ.
No moral code is in of itself objective. The only way any moral conduct can be objective if it is somehow cosmic in it's mandate, such as in a hypothetical "God's Law" scenario. And since we're dealing with the hypothetical deities of Silent Hill, we probably can't rely on 21st century humanist thought.
Under the same circumstances, if James had been killed by Abstract Daddy while trying to save Angela, that would have qualified as redemption. His suicide, since it accomplishes precisely nothing, does not.
The endings are so open-ended that we cannot factually state that James' suicide accomplishes nothing. That's exactly what we're debating here; your argument is becoming circular.
Seppuku is not redemptive, it is an act of atonement, again because it accomplishes nothing positive. In Japanese tradition, it is typically carried out when a person dishonors himself. They've paid for the crime and died with their honor intact, but nothing more.
Atonement and Redemption are largely the same thing. A Thesaurus treats them as synonyms. The only distinctions are in the religious senses of the word. But we've already agreed that we're not talking about Christianity or any specific real-world religion.
Suicide might be mandated in whatever faith the samurai practiced, but the Judeo-Christian tradition is what James would most likely have followed, regardless of his actual faith (if he had one). That tradition condemns suicide. Even in the Old Testament, where divine punishments were frequent and harsh, no one was ever ordered to kill himself. Offenders are generally expected to seek forgiveness. Case in point: Peter vs. Judas. Both sinned, both deeply regretted their actions. Judas killed himself, and remained condemned. Peter sought forgiveness, and was reinstated.
The Judeo-Christian tradition is irrelevant in the world of Xuchilbara and Valtiel.
No, James isn't omniscient, but he's not stupid either. Killing himself accomplishes no "Good" whatsoever. It's either escape or self-imposed punishemnt. And since Mary has told him that his suffering is sufficient, and God (as James probably understands Him) doesn't condone suicide, that makes punishment rather unlikely. Especially when you factor in James's final dialogue in "In-Water", which has nothing about punishing himself in it. You are free to interpret it differently, of course.
The ultimate morality of the action is ultimately out of James' hands. Since suicide doesn't effect anyone else, it's basically inherently a morally neutral act, and can only be colored by intent, faith, and the world around you. And the gods of Silent Hill seem VERY "eye for an eye."
The four endings are so open to interpretation, a person can defend nearly anything. The statement "just for devil's advocate" suggests that you don't believe those arguments any more than I do.
I believe lots of things. I just don't want them to get in the way of an interesting argument. :P
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

QUOTE: "You also told me...you didn't want to die..."

Knew that, of course. That's why I added the disclaimer "rightly or wrongly".

QUOTE: The endings are so open-ended that we cannot factually state that James' suicide accomplishes nothing.

True, but we are entitled to our own opinions. My opinion, based on the empirical evidence, is that James' suicide accomplished exactly that. I res[pect your opinion, but new empirical evidence will be required to change mine.

QUOTE: Atonement and Redemption are largely the same thing.

I don't see it that way. As I understand them, atonement is typically negative in nature, redemption is positive. You may see it differently, that is your right.

QUOTE: The Judeo-Christian tradition is irrelevant in the world of Xuchilbara and Valtiel.

The issue at hand is whether it is irrelevant in the mind of James Sunderland? Was he conditioned by society to believe that suicide was a morally proper act? If he was a typical American man of his generation, probably not.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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True, but we are entitled to our own opinions. My opinion, based on the empirical evidence, is that James' suicide accomplished exactly that. I res[pect your opinion, but new empirical evidence will be required to change mine.
You worded your opinion as if it were fact, before, which is why I started all this up.
I don't see it that way. As I understand them, atonement is typically negative in nature, redemption is positive. You may see it differently, that is your right.
Tough nuggets, the words share the same definition. You can't just redefine them on personal preference.
The issue at hand is whether it is irrelevant in the mind of James Sunderland? Was he conditioned by society to believe that suicide was a morally proper act? If he was a typical American man of his generation, probably not.
Given that he tried to morally justify euthanizing Mary, the opinions of a typical American can't be leaned back on.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

QUOTES: You worded your opinion as if it were fact, before, which is why I started all this up.
AND
Tough nuggets, the words share the same definition. You can't just redefine them on personal preference.


1. The generally accepted meanings are different. And why have two words in the English language if they can't have related, but different meanings?
2. It doesn't matter anyway. James killing himself was no more atonement than it was redemption. Mary declared that what he had suffered was enough, and as for Valatiel and Xuchi-whatever, James doesn't even know anything about them in "In-Water".
3. Enough already. We're not going to agree on this. You should know that when I concede a point you've made, I generally do it immediately.

Given that he tried to morally justify euthanizing Mary, the opinions of a typical American can't be leaned back on.

Given that his mind snapped out of guilt after the deed was done, I would say otherwise.
____________________________________________

Now, regarding the Maria Ending...

It's impossible, I think, to say that James's actions were truly right or wrong. I certainly don't agree with them, but I have probably said before that I do understand them. James is simply not a character you can see in terms of black or white. He's flawed, damaged, vulnerable, and comprised of many shades of gray. Just like the other characters in the game (even Laura, her shades of gray may be lighter than the rest, but they're there). That's what makes SH2 so great: the compelling complexity of the people in it.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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1. The generally accepted meanings are different. And why have two words in the English language if they can't have related, but different meanings?
Synonyms.
2. It doesn't matter anyway. James killing himself was no more atonement than it was redemption. Mary declared that what he had suffered was enough, and as for Valatiel and Xuchi-whatever, James doesn't even know anything about them in "In-Water".
You're completely ignoring my entire goddamn argument. Stop avoiding it.
Given that his mind snapped out of guilt after the deed was done, I would say otherwise.
He feels guilt because of what Mary meant to him. I hardly think James feels guilty because he broke the law of a biblical Commandment.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

QUOTE: Synonyms.

Indeed. However, words considered to be synonyms can have similar but not identical accepted meanings. Take "fast".

SYNONYMS: breakneck, breathless, brisk, dizzy, fleet, fleet-footed, flying, hasty, lightning, nippy, quick, rapid, rapid-fire, rattling, snappy, speedy, swift, whirlwind.

A swift pace or a rapid pace would imply smooth, controlled speed. A breakneck or whirlwind pace would mean something totally different. And while you might hear of quick-drying cement, you probably won't find hasty- or breathless-drying cement. If you want to make all so-called synonyms utterly interchangable, feel free. But you might get some funny looks from everyone else.
_________________________

Certainly, James felt guilt because of what Mary meant to him. And I willingly concede that James's INITIAL intent was to go to Silent Hill, their "special place", and kill himself. I further concede that that original plan may have been to atone for what he did, not because of any mandate imposed by Silent Hill's deities, but because of what he did to Mary. However, Mary herself declared that his suffering was sufficient atonement. Since you insist that the Judeo-Christian God be disregarded (and He considers suicide to be anathema anyway), and I have observed that James had no knowledge of the pagan deities of Silent Hill, Mary herself is the only offended party we have to worry about. If she declares that honor is satisfied, it is. Ergo, in killing himself, James is not atoning for anything.

As for redemption, I continue to regard it the way I did when this discussion started: compensating for one or more evil acts WITH ONE OR MORE GOOD ONES. The fact that you define it differently matters exactly nothing to me. I consider you an insightful person and a worthy debating adversary, and I respect the right to your own opinion, but I choose not to adopt it in this case.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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Indeed. However, words considered to be synonyms can have similar but not identical accepted meanings. Take "fast".

SYNONYMS: breakneck, breathless, brisk, dizzy, fleet, fleet-footed, flying, hasty, lightning, nippy, quick, rapid, rapid-fire, rattling, snappy, speedy, swift, whirlwind.

A swift pace or a rapid pace would imply smooth, controlled speed. A breakneck or whirlwind pace would mean something totally different. And while you might hear of quick-drying cement, you probably won't find hasty- or breathless-drying cement. If you want to make all so-called synonyms utterly interchangable, feel free. But you might get some funny looks from everyone else.
That would be language corrupting and altering the meanings of words through layman's speak, just like the creation of slang. A linguist wouldn't be swayed by this argument.
Certainly, James felt guilt because of what Mary meant to him. And I willingly concede that James's INITIAL intent was to go to Silent Hill, their "special place", and kill himself. I further concede that that original plan may have been to atone for what he did, not because of any mandate imposed by Silent Hill's deities, but because of what he did to Mary. However, Mary herself declared that his suffering was sufficient atonement. Since you insist that the Judeo-Christian God be disregarded (and He considers suicide to be anathema anyway), and I have observed that James had no knowledge of the pagan deities of Silent Hill, Mary herself is the only offended party we have to worry about. If she declares that honor is satisfied, it is. Ergo, in killing himself, James is not atoning for anything.
Look, I don't know where you think that James needs to have knowledge of the pagan deities of Silent Hill in order to earn their moral judgment. If a deity exists, it doesn't have to be acknowledged by a mortal in order for it to judge that mortal. Otherwise the Biblical God wouldn't say that unbelievers face damnation.

If James meets their standards for atonement and redemption, it doesn't matter whether he believes in them or not unless that is itself a quality of which they base moral character, which the Order doesn't seem to unanimously believe.
As for redemption, I continue to regard it the way I did when this discussion started: compensating for one or more evil acts WITH ONE OR MORE GOOD ONES. The fact that you define it differently matters exactly nothing to me. I consider you an insightful person and a worthy debating adversary, and I respect the right to your own opinion, but I choose not to adopt it in this case.
And all I was saying is that your definition of redemption is not the one that is maintained by mainstream theology, philosophy, or linguistic definitions. It is a minority view.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

QUOTE: And all I was saying is that your definition of redemption is not the one that is maintained by mainstream theology, philosophy, or linguistic definitions. It is a minority view.

Well, why don't you find me a mainstream religion or school of thought that regards driving one's car into the water and drowning oneself as a positive or redemptive act? Actually, don't bother. There is nothing you can say or do that will get me to adopt your opinion. I read your theory, I evaluated your theory, I rejected your theory. Accept reality. You can't win this argument, and I see little reason to continue it.

QUOTE: Look, I don't know where you think that James needs to have knowledge of the pagan deities of Silent Hill in order to earn their moral judgment. If a deity exists, it doesn't have to be acknowledged by a mortal in order for it to judge that mortal.

*Sigh...* Uh, Aura? In "In-Water", no deity judges James. He is not struck by lightning, swallowed up by the earth, or turned into a pillar of salt. He destroys himself.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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Well, why don't you find me a mainstream religion or school of thought that regards driving one's car into the water and drowning oneself as a positive or redemptive act? Actually, don't bother. There is nothing you can say or do that will get me to adopt your opinion. I read your theory, I evaluated your theory, I rejected your theory. Accept reality. You can't win this argument, and I see little reason to continue it.
You can stop being so defensive. I'm not trying to 'change your opinion', and asking me to 'accept reality' is really offensive and patronizing. I'm only saying that your argument contains a flaw, and accounting for it will make your argument stronger.
*Sigh...* Uh, Aura? In "In-Water", no deity judges James. He is not struck by lightning, swallowed up by the earth, or turned into a pillar of salt. He destroys himself.
Divine intervention is not the same as divine judgment. In the Book of Life, ALL actions of ALL people will be judged as virtuous or sinful. :P
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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QUOTE: Your argument has a flaw...

Both our arguments have flaws, or possibly neither. To put it simply, both of us are trying to force an objective definition of two words: Atonement and Redemption. These are concepts that are largely subjective in nature. Based on my definition of them, James's actions in "In-Water" do not qualify as either. You disagree. You have made it very clear that you do. I respect your right to do so. This whole miserable shooting match started because you suggested certain possibilities within "In-Water": Redemption or Escape. Atonement or Selfishness. Fine. You've defended your position, and that's all you can do in this instance.

QUOTE: Divine intervention is not the same as divine judgment. In the Book of Life, ALL actions of ALL people will be judged as virtuous or sinful.

I never said that James would not be subject to divine judgment. The second message in Bar Neely's suggests that he will, and that the result will not be to his liking. What I said was that his death in "In-Water" is not divine judgment in and of itself. That would be like me sticking my hand in a garbage disposal, then insisting that my hand was mangled because God didn't like me.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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Both our arguments have flaws, or possibly neither. To put it simply, both of us are trying to force an objective definition of two words: Atonement and Redemption. These are concepts that are largely subjective in nature.
Speak for yourself. I'm using the definitions used in mainstream theology, which are entirely based on intention, not deed, and treats both of the ways as synonyms.

But you're right. Let's just disagree.
What I said was that his death in "In-Water" is not divine judgment in and of itself.
I never claimed it was, so why did you make a point of it?
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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My only point was that James was not atoning for anything. The Biblical God proscribes suicide as atonement, Mary had told him that his suffering was enough for her, and he had no knowledge of the cult deities.

Your response: "Look, I don't know where you think that James needs to have knowledge of the pagan deities of Silent Hill in order to earn their moral judgment."

What point WERE you trying to make? :?
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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The point I'm making is that since the ending is open-ended, we can't write off James' fate simply as "he dies." He might be damned, or redeemed in the afterlife. And if he's redeemed, it may either be by his own atonement, Mary's forgiveness, or the judgement of the "old gods" regardless of what James and Mary have to say on the matter because the ethical codes of cosmic beings is immutably eternal and infinitely beyond the scope of two mortals.

Is it clear, now?
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

I think that Bar Neely's provides some foreshadowing about that, perhaps a warning that James chooses to ignore in "In-Water". Thus, his decision is disastrous beyond comprehension, and his last words ("Now we can be together...") bitterly ironic. But that is my assumption, and I accept that yours might differ.

Well, we've had a delightful exchange about "In-Water", and I remember an equally interesting exchage on the subject of "Leave" awhile back (concerning the adoption of a certain finger-flattening moppet) . Why don't we start deconstructing "Maria" now, since it's the subject of this topic.

Is James weak? Or stupid? Or is he just plain crazier than a rat in a tin outhouse?
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

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I don't really put much stock in the Bar Neely's message, since it was seemingly written by a mortal (whether another person, or James' guilty subconscious).

But you're right. Let's start completing the set with the Maria ending.

I personally think that James is simply taking a realistic option. Insanity is to be out of touch with reality, but what do you call it if reality shapes itself to your thoughts? Can you actually BE insane, in such a situation?

As far as it could possibly matter, Maria is real. She has shape, she has her own personality, mind, and thoughts (even if James is subconsciously dictating them), and she's able to provide emotional comfort. And he gets this ending by showing compassion and regard for her well-being.

She's not Mary, so it's wrong to use her as a replacement goldfish for her. But in the Maria ending, he's moved on. He's accepting Maria on her own terms. he may have to deal with the pain of losing Mary a second time, but maybe he'll do better this time around. And maybe that's all he needs to do.
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by Oddish »

I personally think that James is simply taking a realistic option. Insanity is to be out of touch with reality, but what do you call it if reality shapes itself to your thoughts? Can you actually BE insane, in such a situation?

James has to know, on some level, that Maria is not a creature of reality. But it is indeed possible that he regards her as a means of escape, the way some people escape into less tangible fantasy (thought, books, video games). I suppose it depends on how much James believes in the fantasy he's locked himself into. Eddie, by comparison, totally believed his, to the point that he started attacking a real person as well as made-up ones.


And he gets this ending by showing compassion and regard for her well-being.

I suppose that's because it means that James is allowing himself to believe that Maria is real. It puts him on a path that, followed far enough, causes him to embrace the delusion he's created, on all levels.

She's not Mary, so it's wrong to use her as a replacement goldfish for her.

I rather thought that was the point of Maria's existence: James creates a replacement Mary, just a little sexier (the fact that he hasn't gotten any in years affects that).

But in the Maria ending, he's moved on.

I would state that the "Leave" ending is about moving on, accepting what happened and dealing with it. "Maria" is about refusal to move on, in trying to escape from reality.

...he may have to deal with the pain of losing Mary a second time, but maybe he'll do better this time around. And maybe that's all he needs to do.

You and I seem to have something in common, in that we are less than fond of the grim to ambiguous nature of most of SHs's endings. The difference seems to lie in how we respond to it.

Your tack seems to be creating a positive scenario within each possibility:
In "Leave", James finds redemption (by my definition as well as yours) by honoring Mary's wish to adopt Laura.
In "In-Water", James finds atonement in death, and is reunited with Mary.
and in "Maria", James gets a second chance at doing right by the woman he loves.
And I don't remember if it was you who advanced the concept that "Rebirth" could have James actually succeed in his aim, without the expected consequences (horrible death, damnation for eternity, or an evil Mary that ate brains and shot fire from her eyes), but I remember a fierce debate with someone on the subject.

By comparison, I regard the existing endings with far less optimism. I simply create much more satisfactory scenarios, and call them "Rejected Endings". Most are essentially silly, but a few could also be considered wishful thinking. Probably the best SH2 example is the scenario that had James wake up to find that the whole mess had been a bad dream.

In a strange sort of way, you and I have more in common than either of us would like to think. :shock:
[url=http://www.silenthillforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=14918&start=0]See the SH2 Endings that WEREN'T chosen[/url]
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mikefile
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by mikefile »

Oddish wrote:But it is indeed possible that he regards her as a means of escape, the way some people escape into less tangible fantasy (thought, books, video games).
Are you comparing book and video game fantasy with the creation of an avatar to spend your life with?
Oddish wrote:I suppose that's because it means that James is allowing himself to believe that Maria is real.
James is aware of what Maria really is. He also responds that he's ok on Maria's doubt about Mary. Claiming that he has her.
Oddish wrote:"Maria" is about refusal to move on, in trying to escape from reality.
Again, James is aware of what's happening, and he does move on. Not the way most expect, not the right way, but he is solving the matter on his own way, permanently efficient or not. "That wasn't Mary. Mary's gone. That was just something I..."
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AuraTwilight
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Re: In Defense of the Maria Ending

Post by AuraTwilight »

James has to know, on some level, that Maria is not a creature of reality.
Well, not Earth's reality, no. But he decides reality, now. Who's to say the Otherworld is less real, rather than different?
I rather thought that was the point of Maria's existence: James creates a replacement Mary, just a little sexier (the fact that he hasn't gotten any in years affects that).
This is arguable. It's implied that Mary also helped create Maria, and her sexual provocativeness seems to come from Mary. Regardless, what I'm saying is that his regard for her CHANGES.
I would state that the "Leave" ending is about moving on, accepting what happened and dealing with it. "Maria" is about refusal to move on, in trying to escape from reality.
There's more than one way to 'move on'. I'm saying that in the Maria ending, he's over Mary and is pursuing his own solution, because Fuck This, He's Got Supernatural Answers To His Problems.
And I don't remember if it was you who advanced the concept that "Rebirth" could have James actually succeed in his aim, without the expected consequences (horrible death, damnation for eternity, or an evil Mary that ate brains and shot fire from her eyes), but I remember a fierce debate with someone on the subject.
That'd be Adversary. I personally don't see Rebirth being that simple and easy, but I can't admonish anyone for it. If it's up to us to choose our ending, and if the endings themselves have so many possibilities within them, then I think all endings can be wonderful or horrible.
[quote="BlackFire2"]I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.[/quote]
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