The introduction of Salad Finger's Mother in Salad Fingers 11 has spurred me into this thought process. While Salad Finger's grasp on reality is tenuous at best, it's clear that Salad Finger's Mother is emotionally abusive towards him. This is difficult to refute since in every scene Salad Finger's Mother is in, she directly insults Salad Fingers. Hints of this were also shown in Episode 8 with the radio.
While he's never been directly shown, Salad Finger's father is probably not better either. Before Episode 10, very few characters other than Salad Fingers himself appeared, but the conversation present in Episode 6 between "Jeremy Fischer" and an unnamed father character is probably a good look at the actual character. This conversation, as shown by the end of it, probably ended in some violent confrontation between the Father and "Jeremy Fischer"
It seems like Salad Fingers may simply imagine scenarios and play all the characters inside. He has occasionally broken into aggressive insults towards the other characters in these scenarios. This could be him trying to emulate his father, or simply adopting his tendencies.
They both make bloody frightening works, with funny elements. And Firth made fan videos for "4", "Girl/Boy Song", and "Milkman". Yeah.
- But,wait! It gets worse!
The Great War is the same one in the fallout universe,and it is set in a particularly Bombed area of The United States. The girl that you saw during the picnic episode? She was from Shady Sands,and was looking for some help,because she got kidnapped by raiders but managed to escape and ran off,leading her to this hellhole!
But,wait! If this is set in the fallout universe,where is all the Raiders,or the brotherhood?
Seriously? Who would want to go to the place where Salad Fingers lived? Anyway,the brotherhood only come when there is tech,and the only technology I saw in the series was that bloody radio,and that probably didn't even work in the first place! The raiders also come when there is stuff to pil— HEY! Wait! Maybe they did come! Maybe Salad Fingers was an odd ghoul living there,with the long fingers and all,and went totally insane when he saw the raiders destroying everything he knew! Maybe he had friends! Those were the sock puppets! Maybe it's set just after the war,since he says to a sock puppet that he didn't see him,since the person who the puppet was based on was a soldier in the great war...
Hey,wait. That doesn't make sense. The Great War was nuclear warfare,so...HOW CAN YOU GO TO A NUCLEAR WAR?
Maybe Salad Fingers meant the resource wars,not the great war. That was probably the nickname for the resource wars.
- ...dude, stop watching Salad Fingers. It's messing you up.
- OK. XKCD should help...Maybe...Oh god.... SALAD FINGERS IS HORRIBLE!
- ...Firth might actually be hinting at this one—At one point, Salad Fingers is shown singing "We'll Meet Again," which is best known as part of the score from "Dr. Strangelove."
- This troper is not opposed to the show taking place in the Fallout universe, but the character of Salad Fingers is clearly English.
- He can be English American.
- The Fallout games only show what happened to America... THIS is what happened to Europe!
- Word of God does say that Europe got it worse than America.
- ...dude, stop watching Salad Fingers. It's messing you up.
Decades after Northern England is destroyed and civilization dies out, only a handful of children born after the war have survived, and despite being severely mutated by the radiation and driven insane by the loneliness and desolation of the wasteland that used to be Sheffield, are managing to eke out a very meager living.
Think about it. They both apparently take place Oop North, the burnt hellscape Salad Fingers lives in looks suspiciously like the one that was left after Sheffield was destroyed (complete with medieval-style hovels and scattered remnants of the world that was), and Salad Fingers, like the characters in Threads, seems to survive off of wild animals and expired canned foods left over from before the war.
- Nah. Salad Fingers still speaks idiomatic contemporary English, albeit with a northern accent, whereas the first generation raised (let alone born) after the war in Threads spoke in ungrammatical phrases which largely seemed to be local dialect nouns. Plus Salad Fingers himself has ideas about needing to go off to the war, suggesting that he's from the generation which suffered the attack.
- Maybe it's not that distant of a finale, then. It could take place around the same time as the movie - or shortly afterwards - in a more rural part of England. If he's from the generation that suffered the attack instead of the one born after it, then his still managing to speak coherently (sort of) would make more sense. The Mind Screw (mutated creatures, Companion Cubes coming to life, etc.) could all be his hallucinations.note
- Jossed, probably. In episode 10, we meet his former battalion, who are all at zombie-level intelligence.
- It's worth noting that Salad Fingers said Jeremy Fisher fought the Great War with him.
- When Salad Fingers digs up Kenneth's corpse, he states something along the lines of "It was frightfully rude of you blokes to leave for the war without me.", implying that he didn't fight in the war.
- Or maybe his brother got drafted first?
- And this explains the whole "Eating his own corpse" thing at the end of ep 5. Although in Salad Fingers context, he probably ate his past self.
- And the "Safety Cupboard" could be where he hid when the disaster happened.
- It could all take place in the distant past, and by now he could have mutated further into what we now know as the Slender man. He even has the finger thingies.
- Salad Fingers himself was a mentally ill man before the war, the gassing of England and the isolation only drove him over the edge
- The body in the backyard really is his brother Kenneth, he likely deserted and returned home to die after being gassed or badly wounded. The reason his corpse is just a torso and head? Salad Fingers ate bits of him to fend off starvation
- Salad Fingers was gassed just enough to ruin his lungs. His hallucinations are likely a way of warding off the pain of his lungs filling with fluid.
- The only survivors are children and others too handicapped to fight the war. The reason? England began to draft anyone and everyone who could hold a weapon in desperation, leaving, as noted, children (The two Salad Fingers encounters), the deformed (the stalker) and those that have extreme forms of mental illness (The "young boy" and "Aunt" Salad Fingers visits in the first and latest episode)
- The reason Salad Fingers had a complete freak out when the little girl spoke? Up until then, Salad Fingers had been imagining himself to be living in a fantasy based on happier memories when the Great War first started or was going well. With the little girl being the first human contact he's likely had in years, it forced him out of his fantasy and made him face reality, as noted in another entry on this very page.
- Maybe this takes place in an alternate version of the Leviathan universe, and the Clankers won out over the Darwinists at the expense of Earth's environment (which was ravaged by the hyper-increased CO2 emissions caused by the war)?
- Psychosomatic? Dude, I don't think your brain can just fake a coma. It can fake pains and twitches and smells and stuff, but coma?
In addition, the Ice King's back-story about about the crown could very well be an allegory about his developing psychological problems that are similar to those of Salad Fingers. This would only be in part, though, since his ice powers are obviously real. In this case, the ice crown could also be a subtle way of explaining that he went through the effects of radioactive mutation. The ice powers just come from the fact that it's a fantasy series.
As I mentioned before, many of the residents are probably the ancestors of those who survived the cataclysm. Note that a lot of the characters of Salad Fingers look like horribly dilapidated humans. Now, it's somewhat logical to assume that some of these effects were passed down to the next generation (under the assumptions that (a) the DNA was somehow affected, and/or (b) the toxic radiation was still present by the time that the children were born). If this was the case, then the species would adapt some of these traits after a while. And, centuries down the road, a few of these features would become a little less horrific and a bit more natural (with "natural" being used in the weirdest sense possible). This explains things like stretchable dogs and unicorns, fire people, and a bunch of other things. The talking animals are result of a combination of this, their species beginning the long process of evolution, the inherent fantasy elements, and the fact that animals would have escaped zoos and wildlife preserves after the apocalypse, thereby migrating and crossbreeding with similar animals when compatible. The races that can't be explained by this come from other sources. Weird creatures, such as giants or witches, are mutated forms of several alien races. Either that, or they are legitimate fantasy creatures who came out of hiding when humans began to accept mutated animals and aliens. Also, the Lumpy Space people are canonically interdimentional, so that could also apply to other races. The candy people are the result of advances in science and candy-making technology (along with radiation poisoning, again).
Now to explain Charlie the Unicorn: It takes place during the same time period as Adventure Time, or perhaps a little before, but in another part of America. The odd nature of the creatures, along with the deranged habits of many of them, can be rationalized using the same reasoning that I used for the citizens in Adventure Time.
In episode 2 friends SF introduces us to three finger puppets. Hubert Cumberdale, Marjory Stewart-Baxter, and Jeremy Fisher. These puppets are used as guests for a get together.SFs real name is Marjory Stewart, later Marjory Stewart-Cumberdale, and later Marjory Stewart-Baxter. Hubert was her husband who went off with her brother to fight in The Great War. Her brother died in battle and his corpse was sent to her family, who buried him. Hubert later also died, but his body was never found. The death of her husband left Marjory in shambles and she tried to rebuild the lives of herself and her children by marrying another man with the last name of Baxter. (Jeremy may have been one of their laborers, and one of the few people Marjory remembers in her current state.)
Baxter and her children later died in the chaos of whatever The Great War caused, remaining citizens were stricken with illness and mutations. Losing a brother, both husbands, her children, and her family caused Marjory to go insane, adopting the alias of a man named Salad Fingers as she can no longer remember her true identity. Marjory mutated into what we know is him, gaining an olive green skin tone, hands mutating to having three long fingers that bend in inhuman ways. Illness caused her voice to change due to vocal damage and to lose her hair and maybe even her breasts. Lack of food may contribute her her emaciated frame.Pieces of her life are still buried in her subconscious, causing her to do odd and surreal things as she roams what is left of her hometown, causing citizens desperately trying to rebuild their lives to look on in concern. In his insanity, SF gained several odd obsessions. Things like rust, blood, and nettles. There isnt much evidence as to if these are related to his previous life.
I'm only going in depth with relevant episodes if you want to read the full theory here is a link.
Also keep in mind that there are a lot of spoilers in this so, be warned I guess. Also It would make more sense if you watch the series first.
Episode 4: Cage:
SF is going to try and find France, because he(she) has always wanted to visit. He then notices another mutated citizen who has been staring at him for quite a while. SF is uncomfortable with it, and laments that he may have to find France another day. The citizen then stops him, and starts to show affection and garble in a young sounding voice, so maybe he is a young boy. (Maybe even Marjorys son who managed to survive but got separated from her and, despite all odds, recognizes SF as his mother.) SF puts his hand out to hold the boy off and he responds by playfully licking it. SF is very disturbed by this.
We later see SF talking to a pill bug, calling it Bordois and claiming it to be his little sister, asking her what shes been gathering. Things take a disturbing turn when he says that Bordois body is so much fun and that hed like to give her a big stroke. He then tries to, but ends up squishing her and seems genuinely surprised by this. He tells her that shes gone flat and is all gooey and states I shallnt play with you again, until youve had a wash. This is also where a lot of theories take a disturbing turn, and I want to warn those who have been victims of molestation and rape to turn away now if the subject makes you uncomfortable.
Original theories state that SF molested or raped his little sister, or is the little sister being molested or raped, and the bug scene is a representation of a memory of the molestation/rape. We do know that SF had a brother that fought in the great war, and since this theory here states that SF was originally Marjory, it is possible that Marjory was molested/raped by her brother. I think the brothers name is clearly stated in the episode he appears in, and it isnt Bordois. Bordois might have been a nickname or pet name that Marjory got from her brother. One theory I came across included the bug squishing as part of the molestation/rape memory, saying that the brother mockingly said that after she is left exhausted and covered in sexual fluids following the molestation/rape.
Anyways, SF gets a knock on the door and opens it to find a grubby tap tied to a string. After a tap-filled daydream, SF goes to retrieve it, only for it to be pulled away from him. So he chases after it. This leads him to step in a bear trap, causing him to pass out in bliss. Now we see SF in some sort of prison, and he begins to rub at the rusty bars of the window. We find out that the trap was set up by the boy, who blows him(her) a kiss. (The boy may be determined to keep his mother near him, in hopes that she will get better and remember him.) This display of love confuses SF, and he asks the boy what its all about. The boy responds by garbling some more, and yelling a bit, startling SF.
SF decides that hes had enough of the situation, and wants to go home. The boy refuses to let him(her) go and becomes angry. SF then somehow manages to escape the box by pulling down a curtain. When the boy sees that the prison is empty, he starts crying. (Realizing that his mother is just too far gone to realize who she is or recognize her own son, and his fate is to roam the wastelands alone without any family to lean on.)
Episode 5: Picnic:
SF is trying to call up his old friend Charlie because he is arranging a picnic. He describes the different foods that will be at the picnic, causing him to become hungry and call himself Mary Mandolin. (Saying a remembered quote from her Stop scratching your basket, belly.) He then brings up Hubert, (incorrectly remembering him as Barbara Logan-Price, another friend of Marjorys, possibly.) and gives him a friend hat. (A captain's hat to be specific.) And says Therell be fog on the shore tonight Bosun. (Barbaras husband may have been a sailor, or it could possibly be Hubert, or maybe even Baxter.)
We then see him(her) in his(her) wedding dress, looking in the mirror and crying. You look so beautiful, its your big day. (Remembering her wedding to either Hubert or Baxter.) He comments that the guests should be there at any time, and we transition to the picnic. Its SF, and a rather normal looking girl. (Possibly Marjorys daughter, who might be a hallucination considering that she doesnt look ill or mutated. Judging by the dirt and blood on her clothes, she could have died from illness while her brother lived on as mutated. She may have died before her mother and brother became separated.) SF asks the girl if shed like any food, to which she responds by nodding. While shes eating, SF asks how she likes her food. The girl doesnt really respond, so SF does so for her, calling her Mabel. (Which could be her name.)
Mabel continues eating and SF comments on her manners and says hed like to make her his new playmate. (If you watch closely in the window behind him, the Marjory puppet appears. This could be hinting at how Marjory is beginning to remember her daughter, most likely remembering playing with her.) Mabel continues to eat as we zoom in on the Marjory puppet in the window, while SF comments on how dirty Mabels clothes are. We go back to the picnic, and SF states My tummybox feels broken. (Considering that he(she) has a baby in Episode 9, he(she) could be realizing or feeling that he(she) is pregnant, but not coming to a full realization. Marjory could have been pregnant before the results of the war happened.) He then asks Mabel if shed like some pudding and she nods.
SF pulls out a rusty spoon and gives her some, reciting the some like it hot rhyme only replacing some like it with pease pudding. A crow who has been present during the course of the picnic steals the spoon, leaving SF in shock. Mabel is also shocked. But then they start laughing at the situation, realizing its actually pretty funny. Mabel says that she thinks the crow likes spoons too. SF flips out. The citizens of town only communicate through grunts and garbling, and SF is really the only one who can still form words. Mabel begins to ask whats wrong, causing SF to freak out even more. SF resorts to hiding in a corner of his house, while the words of Mabel haunt him.
The shock of hearing another being form words caused to SF remember his true identity as Marjory. Marjory realized that she was hallucinating playing with Mabel, like old times, and began to wonder of the fate of her son, who she was separated from. She further realizes that the boy who trapped her was, indeed, her son and that she had left him to suffer through his life alone. She also remembers that shes pregnant, but with how little food shes been getting and her illness and mutations, that the baby is most likely dead and rotting inside of her. She boomerangs back to her Salad Fingers identity by the next episode.
Episode 6: Present:
Marjory has sunk lower into her insanity, having very vivid and horrible hallucinations. Its revealed that Jeremy Fisher had gone to fight in the war as well, but his fate it not known. Jeremy gives him a toy horse. SF then eats Jeremy and plays with the horse.
Compare the two one sided conversations at the toilet and with Jeremy Fisher:
Jeremy fisher, I thought you were fighting in the great war.
Crikey, how long has it been since Ive seen your chops?
Id like to have a word with you.
Im not one for accusations, but this ones cast iron.
I dont understand, what is this?
Ive seen you. Tailgating my daughter with aspirations of deflowering her rose.
No! This isnt true! Youve got the wrong bloke, squire!
I dont make mistakes comrade, this ones textbook.
Wash those bad thoughts away.
So. Jeremy Fisher may have been sent away on leave, or discharged due to serious injury. We do know that Jeremy is black, from his puppet. I dont necessarily know if only white people were allowed to fight in WW1, but for the sake of this lets say that in this universe it wasnt. Jeremy, again, may have been one of Marjorys familys laborers. He and Marjory may have been romantically interested in each other, or Jeremy had unrequited love for Marjory. Either way, Marjorys father didnt like it, and when he found out while Jeremy was out at war he was furious at the idea of a black man having relations with his daughter. When Jeremy came back, he confronted him about it. Jeremy tried to deny it, but the father just wasnt having it. It is unknown what exactly happened to Jeremy, but he was most likely fired. Never to be seen by Marjory again. The horse that SF receives earlier is all Marjory has left of him, most likely. After the purple side of the conversations ends SF(Marjory) laments that she never did get to have sex with Jeremy.
Keep in mind that Marjory had gone quite a ways off the deep end, and her memories are manifesting randomly and surreally as her hallucinations get worse. The ending scene where SF is eating himself could be Marjory picturing SF eating her instead. Because SF has taken over Marjorys mind. Marjory isnt here anymore. Only Salad Fingers.
Episode 7: Shore Leave:
SF is eating dirt and talking to the Marjory puppet about how the floor sugar doesnt quite taste right today, and that they should make a record. He later stumbles upon the body of Marjorys brother, Kenneth, that the Hubert puppet supposedly dug up. SF claims himself to be Kenneths other brother, and takes joy in Kenneth coming home from the war on leave. SF comments that it was rude of Kenneth and Hubert to leave for the great war without him, and invites Kenneth in for a bath. SF put Kenneth in a suit, commenting on how handsome he his and then playfully tells him he should tuck him into bed that night and flirts with him. (Since SF and Marjory are now the same body and mind, there is conflicting sexual preferences.) There is a comment that Kenneth has come home to spread his wild oats, a euphemism for how promiscuous Kenneth might have been.
SF treats Kenneth to a diner of sand, and when the corpse falls over SF props him up with a broken crutch part and says that Kenneth is just sleepy. SF talks about how hes been keeping himself busy by singing night and day at different concert halls. (This may have been the job that Marjory got so she could support herself and her children while Hubert was at war.) SF treats Kenneth to tea and then reminisces about frolicking with Marjory many summers ago.
We see a memory of SF measuring the distance between his house and a supposed moving tree named Mr. Branches, who hasnt moved an inch more than 21 yards. Kenneth (with SF speaking for him.) asks for another vanilla crown, but SF scolds him for not eating his beef stroganoff.
Then its time for Kenneth to go back into the ground. SF (or maybe Marjory) is crying at the thought of putting him back (sending him back into war), and then sings a line from Well meet again, before putting him back into the hole. Then we see a memory of Marjory(in SFs body) singing the same song on stage, wearing a dress. She chastises the piano player for being in the wrong key and walks offstage when they dont listen to her.
Episode 9: Letter:
We open with SF reading a letter sent from the war while a tree root makes its way into the house. When the root makes its way into SFs room, he eats it. Causing the tree to tell him that it hurt, and calling him daddy. SF looks out the window to see Mr. Branches is talking to him in a young boys voice, calling him daddy and saying that hes bothered, and crying. SF makes his way to Mr. Branches and he tells him that hes injured himself, and that hes cold. SF tells him that hed better grow out of those branches if he wants to come inside. This could either be Marjorys hallucination of her son, who at this point is either dead or on the verge of it, or his ghost trying to speak to her in the form of a tree. Either way, SF is in control now, and he simply just doesnt care about the boy.
The tree grabs SF around the stomach, squeezing as hard as it can. (Remember tummybox from earlier in the series.) SF wakes up in his bed, his stomach distended (with bloating resulting from an infection caused by the rotting fetus in Marjorys womb.) and black goo on him (possibly rot from the fetus?). SF thinks that hes about to die, and alerts the correspondence, like thats going to fix anything. SF thinks he has scarlet fever, though that isnt the case. In a quite alarming and disturbing manner, SF births the fetus by having it burst from his stomach and he passes out. (Or maybe it just rockets out of Marjorys vagina because of how much her body is rejecting it. FYI theres a disturbing face hidden in the furnace opening, this means nothing but I wanted to point that out.)
SF wakes up to find the blob of nastiness on the floor, and picked it up cooing about how hes been waiting for it to arrive. Like its a baby. (At this point we can safely assume that SFs and Marjorys personalities have morphed together into some sort of bizarre double personality, and we have no idea who is in control anymore.) He says a little rhyme about how happy he is to have the baby, which he names Yvonne, and comments on how it has its mothers eyes. (She was a fair maiden, make no mistake.) Immediately after, Yvonne is in a hole, meaning that SF is neglecting it or realized that its actually dead and attempted to bury it.
SF is now in a wheelchair, writing a letter with his finger dipped in ink on a shit-stained length of toilet paper, and hears a splat. He gets frustrated and goes to see what caused it. Its Yvonne, who has fallen over from how it was propped. It seems that SF is attempting to care for it anyway, and scolds it for not doing its excersises. He tries to motivate it with Heads, shoulders, knees, and toes. But, of course, Yvonne doesnt follow along. (I think weve been given a duff one, Marjory.)
Later on, SF is trying to keep himself alive with a homemade lung pump. His condition is getting worse, what with having a rotting fetus inside of him for so long only to have it rocket out of his body in such a way that hes bleeding rot. He tells Yvonne that he may not be able to care for it, and makes it speak. Yvonne tells SF that he was doing a great job, and SF sends a message on his furnace for someone to come and adopt Yvonne.
SF traverses in his wheelchair to the house from the first episode. SF mistakes the resident for Aunty Bainbridge, and wishes to drop Yvonne off. SF finds that the window is dirty, and starts washing it with Yvonne as the resident just stares on, having no idea what is going on and how to deal with it. After the window is completely painted over, Yvonne is on the ground with its bucket tipped over and SF is eating a sandwich.