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Harry and Heather aren't the protagonists of SH 1 and 3
Dahlia and Claudia are. Think about the connecting theme of the town. It draws people in who are guilty of something, or believe themselves to be so. Dahlia and Claudia are both guilty of being rather unpleasant, religious fanatics. Both of them are on a redemption quest, similar to James in Silent Hill 2. The 'God' that they worship isn't literally an avatar of God, it's their version of Maria, something they want that the town has brought to life in a twisted fashion. It always takes the form of the person they have hurt most, Alessa, to remind them of the sins they have committed, and in a twisted way, you are THEIR version of Pyramid Head. Harry and Heather stalk them throughout most of the game, and at the end, you kill their 'God' to remind them that their faith is a lie. They aren't using the town to mess with you, the town is using YOU to punish THEM.

Everyone who visits Silent Hill gets a portion of Alessa's powers...
But it only works on turning the flashlight on and off. Technically I Love Waxing Owls' WMG.

The cult's God isn't real.
Sure, we see it or manifestations of it in pretty much every Silent Hill game where the cult is a major fixture, especially 1 and 3. But is it really the chessmaster running the town? Signs point to no. In the ritual ending of Silent Hill 2, James attempts to invoke the Old Gods from beneath Toluca Lake, and the Old Gods are mentioned several other times throughout the series. This doesn't exactly jive with the cult's monotheistic nature. The Old Gods manifest as the cult's God in order to manipulate them. The paradise they're slaving away for will never come, and all their worship and machinations do is expand the area over which the fog (and by association, the Old Gods' power) extends.
  • Alternatively, none of the gods are real, or at least the only reality they have is what people have granted them. Silent Hill reacts to people's thoughts and minds and creates things. These things are usually horrible, probably because Silent Hill's bloody history has tainted a once neutral, or perhaps even benevolent, spiritual area. Normal people such as James Sunderland get freaky spirit journeys when they go to Silent Hill and literally face their own inner demons (a side effect of which is that they might leave the town with a sense of peace, perhaps a holdover from Silent Hill's more benevolent past), while individuals involved with the cult have to face the cult's inner demons, which take the form of powerful demons that reflect the collective belief of the members of the cult that has imprinted itself on Silent Hill's reality. Alessa was an interesting case where the cult tried to use the personal demons of a powerful psychic in conjunction with the cult's own powerful mythology to cross over their "God" from the ephemeral existence it had in Silent Hill's native, dream-like environment into true reality.
  • This cult, though, has several deities and other "divine" beings, such as Lobsel Vith, and the Red God, Xuchilbara, and even Valtiel, the "attendant of God/the Goddess", in whose image the original Pyramid Head executioners were based on. Clearly, they have a main god or goddess, a difference that is important to note, as the "incomplete god" that Harry fought resembled the Baphomet, which was the image that Dahlia thought the god looked like, while Heather fights a goddess which greatly resembles Alessa, herself of course, because it is what Claudia thought the goddess, not the god, looked like. It is obvious that the town acts as a kind of psycic sponge, taking in many things and making each person's trip within very personal. There is also a layer composed of the collective psyche of some of the people that have been "read" by the town's more supernatural side.

Alternately, the cult's God IS real.
Not only is the cult's God real, it is also the Creator of the universe where Silent Hill resides just like the creation myth that Heather reads about in Silent Hill 3. The town of Silent Hill is just the one place in the universe where God can manifest, and it called its true believers there so that it could be brought back through their rituals and worship. That makes the cult the One True Faith, and the whole game series is actually a Cosmic Horror Story, where God Is Evil. One could use the argument that if the God can be killed, it wasn't much of a god, but then creating an entire universe burned away most of its divinity leaving it in a permanently weakened state. Plus, when it manifests in a physical form, it also makes itself susceptible to damage and so can be killed (temporarily), and so is just sent back between dimensions waiting to be summoned again.

Silent Hill is another dimension where the Cenobites are created
  • While no one might have touched the Lament Configuration, the creatures seem to carry certain qualities that are similar to the Cenobites from Hellraiser.

Or, alternatively, Silent Hill doesn't "have" a god. It IS the god.
An Eldritch Location that is strongly indicated to be a really evil Genius Loci... Come on, people, this could well be a God of Evil we're walking all over here.
  • Adding on to that, The "God" we see summoned by The Order is due to the Order's belief, it coalesces Silent Hill's power into a tangible form, which is the main problem for it, being that the form comes from, ultimately, very human beliefs, due to how Silent Hill's power works, the form is flawed, the only reason the Aglaophotis works is because the Order Believes it works, if they belived it didn't work their God would be birthed and completely invincible.

The true Canon endings are the UFO endings, Word of God notwithstanding.
Hell, this makes as much sense as anything else about the Silent Hill series...
  • Didn't they say that was true as a joke?

There's nothing strange about Silent Hill.
What kind of drugs have you guys been taking? I drove up there once. Nice place, beautiful in the summer. Yeah, the mornings get a little foggy because of the lake, and the radio reception is terrible, but the town's economy is bad enough without you guys spreading vicious rumors about it.
  • (Looking wild eyed, stops checking the floor to see if it's really real) You poor, deluded man.
    • I think Silent Hill is a wonderful little vacation town; it's got to be people like you who are responsible for the downturn in tourism. My family's been going there forever, and we've noticed that several of the couples haven't been back in recent years.
    • (Laughs hysterically) Like I said, you poor, deluded fool...Wait, you're not really a person at all, are you!? YOU CAN TAKE MY FREEDOM FROM MY COLD, DEAD HANDS!
    • Well, there have been a few crazy people coming to the town. I mean, remember that private detective who wouldn't wear any pants and kept talking about monsters? That sort of thing is difficult to explain to the kids.
    • God, and what about that weird blonde guy? Found him in my apartment shoving his hand through a hole in the wall. Then he starts asking me about his dead wife...jeez.
    • Was he the same weirdo who kept sticking his hand down toilets? Yeah, I think I remember him.
    • And didn't he used to jump down holes, and somehow appear unscathed afterwards?
    • There are still some good things about this place, though— I met this really hot girl the other day at the amusement park. She liked the Robbie Rabbit plushie I won for her, but she seemed weirded out by the carousel.
  • I dunno what the rest of you've been takin', but I could really, really use some more PTV. So if you'll excuse me, I need to tend to the White Claudia growing in my backyard.
    • H-Hey, do you... do you think you could spare some, man? That, uh, doctor guy I usually buy my stuff from up and disappeared on me. Guess he heard about the cops coming into town to snoop around and decided to lie low...
  • Wait, wait, are we talking about a different Silent Hill from the one that had the cathedral fire about thirty years ago? Because I'm pretty sure that's not a resort town. Police blocked it off a couple of years ago, even.
    • Um, yeah... I gotta agree. My mom and dad were from there, but they were kids when they had to leave— That fire chased everyone out of town, right? Can't be the one everybody else is talking about.
    • I dunno. I'd heard they'd started rebuilding it, but that's just the Rumor Mill at work. I think.
    • You guys are nuts. Silent Hill wasn't a tourist town, it was a coal town. The authorities condemned it after the mines caught fire, and the ash makes it impossible to live there. Don't know how you knew about the cathedral fire and not that...
    • Guys, guys, you're getting mixed up. There's two towns named Silent Hill, one's a quaint little resort in pleasant but foggy New England, the other one's a mining town in West Virginia. Just because they share a name, have some great tragedy in their history, both have a lake and have connections to eccentric religious orders doesn't mean they're the same place!
  • I think Silent Hill is a pretty cool town. eh minds the scroos and doesn't afraid of anything.

Amanda did it.
Everything is either a robot full of fake blood or a hologram that makes that pacemaker she put in the characters' chests jump. It's the ultimate in trying to make an escapable trap.

Silent Hill is a conglomerate of Dunwich and Innsmouth.
It's a thoroughly creepy dying New England town with a cult that worships strange beings that may or may not be gods. A creepy albino woman with a close relationship with her equally wacky father ends up birthing the spawn of one of these beings. People who visit tend to discover unpleasant things about themselves and/or their families and go insane.

The "real" endings for each of the games are the ones where only one character survives.
One of the main themes of Silent Hill is isolation; the protagonists spend the vast amount of their time alone facing the brain-breaking horrors of the town, and what few people they do encounter soon leave them for one reason or another, interestingly with very little coercion. With maybe one exception (Harry and Cybil in the antique shop) every departure is of their own free will despite keeping as many people around as possible being the most intelligent option (to have something else for the monsters to attack if nothing else). Therefore, it makes a twisted sort of sense (the best kind) that even after the end everyone will be either alone or dead, the "better" endings a form of reward for players that prefer the sweet half of bittersweet.

Silent Hill, "Good": There is not a single mention of Cybil in the third game, not even in Harry's notes, which is understandable if he was attempting to forget the woman he was forced to kill, and considering how awkward her appearance is before Dahlia reunites Alessa it seems most likely that she didn't survive.

Silent Hill 2, "In Water": With the possible exception of "Maria", this is by far the easiest ending to achieve without being provided instructions, resulting from actions that are entirely reasonable in an adventure game, even this one (examining/using every item, conserving health items etc.). More importantly, however, the Eddie and Angela subplots make more sense in the context of this ending and it's highly appropriate for a game this bleak, even compared to the other entries.

Silent Hill 3, "Possession": In both endings, after killing God, Heather sees something in that pit, and if there's anything to learn from this series, it's that the probability of it being something benign is miniscule. Whether it was Valtiel wanting another sacrifice or Harry wanting revenge himself or another ridiculous idea for another folder is irrelevant, the point is that Douglas is yet another person who isn't leaving Silent Hill.

Silent Hill 4: The Room, "Eileen's Death": Henry spends the first half of the game watching people die due to his own ineffectiveness/apathy, and the second half protecting the one person he can save, only to have her die as well right before the metaphorical finish line. It fits Silent Hill's modus operandi perfectly.

  • Only problem I can find is that a memo in Homecoming confirms Douglas's survival.
  • Actually, some dialogue in SH4 does seem to indicate that the "In Water" ending happened in SH 2.
  • From various things said and the above, it would seem that the "canon" endings for the games are "Good" (Cybil dies, but Harry escapes with Heather), "In Water" (James kills himself), and "Normal" (Heather and Douglas both survive). I'm not sure if there's enough references in 4 and 5 to support one ending or another — but the fact that Cybil is gone, James never came home, and Douglas is still alive in later games pretty much concretely spell out the endings for the first 3 games.
  • Either In Water or Rebirth. We won't know until we see James Sunderland as an opponent in a Silent Hill game. And if the canon ending is In Water, then we won't know at all, not unless someone finds a rusting car with two decayed corpses in it at the bottom of the lake. Alternatively, James left, but didn't inform his father. The last bit's unlikely, unfortunately.
    • James could just be estranged with his father (you can't feel that comfortable with a guy who kept an umbilical cord in his apartment, and it's easy to assume that James' instability affected more than his relationship with Mary) and left Silent Hill to start over somewhere else, leaving his old life behind. Considering he did murder Mary, it's not improbable, and gives another explanation in that he might not have wanted to get his father involved.
    • Actually, his father says his son AND his DAUGHTER IN LAW has gone missing 3 YEARS AGO. Its kinda odd he never knew his daughter in law died, isn't it? He doesn't even seem to know she was ill. Remember another time that something happened 3 years ago? That's when James said his wife died. Nothing indicates the ending of Silent Hill 2 is In Water. Both 4 and 2 are happening at the same time. 1 and 3 are directly connected, as both deal with Alessa in one form or another. The 21 Sacraments connect 2 to 4, as both the protagonists are using it for their own twisted ends.
      • 2 and 4 can't happen at the same time, as in-game notes for SH4 concerning the Sacraments indicate a gap of several years from Walter's first string of killings (which took place either before or almost at the same time as SH2) and the second batch (which occurs leading up to and during SH4). In Silent Hill 2, a newspaper article indicates that Walter killing the Locane children (victims in the first killing spree) happened just prior to that game's events, as he was arrested on the "18th of [this] month." Also, the only ritual James (arguably) conducted was the rebirth one to bring Mary back in one of the endings; there is no other evidence in the game that leads us to believe James knew about the 21 Sacraments or the cult sects or anything pertaining to them besides this rebirth ritual (which he only knows about through a new game plus bonus). Only Walter could do the 21 Sacraments because of how he was raised (the cult specifically trained him for this purpose) and because his own death was a required Sacrament (11/21's theme was Assumption). James had no such corrupt religious tutelage, thus he lacked the necessary abilities. If anything, SH3 and SH4 are the games with similar, if not almost overlapping, timelines considering the absolute decay of the cult (SH3 sees two of its prominent members murdered as well as revealing internal discord between members) and a memo in the orphanage in SH4 pertaining to the search for Alessa. Remember that Claudia hired Douglas in SH3 to find Heather, whom she called Alessa, and SH4's Sacrament victims included some of the last surviving high-ranked members of the cult.
      • Silent Hill: Downpour blasts the theory out of the water. It's impossible to have an ending where only one character survives — Sewell lives on outside the town in Full Circle.
      • James going missing and Mary's death aren't referring to the same three year period, since Mary died much more recently than James initially states. Also, nothing in Downpour indicates you can't escape Silent Hill alone.

The ammo and other tools you get in the game are an example of your character's will fighting the malevolent presence in the town.
Whatever evil force there is in the town is invariably trying its best to torture and/or kill you. It's not in its best interest for it to give you a means to fight back. However, you find guns and ammo aplenty in the town, along with clues leading you forward. Of course, the clues could just be the malevolent force in the town dangling a carrot in front of your nose to make you move forward, but why give you a shotgun? The town seems to react to people's consciousness, and perhaps that's a double edged sword. When the town creates monsters that match up to some protagonists' inner demons, it might then also edit itself to give what the protagonist is expecting: A fighting chance. Silent Hill 1 doesn't really match up with this idea, though, because Harry isn't the one providing himself with assistence, it's whatever part of Cheryl that still exists after she joined back up with Alessa. Alessa is responsible for all the monsters, because she's trying to protect herself from Dahlia and Harry, whom Dahlia is using as an unwitting pawn. Cheryl is helping her daddy because she loves him and wants him to save her.
  • Silent Hill 1 is different in all kinds of ways, though, because Silent Hill hasn't seized control of its eponymous town yet. It's still confined to a sort of Astral Plane.

The White World, one of the four universes in Slayers, is really the world of Silent Hill.
The symbol representing the Mazoku Lord of the White World is vaporous mists arising from what appear to be crosses, grave markers. Obviously Death Fog, the Mazoku Lord, is the very fog that covers the entire town.

Speaking of Slayers, Silent Hill is actually built on a Hellmouth, like on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Clearly this is what happens when a Hellmouth is open enough that some small creatures and the Hellmouth essence can leak out.
  • That's why all the dead people start popping up as ghosts. They're really the First, trying for another sacrifice to fully open this Hellmouth.
  • Silent Hill is Sunnydale post-collapse.

Silent Hill is ALIVE.
The reason for everything, from the early days of the Cult, Tolouca Prison, the disease that swept through the town, Blood Swamp, the boats lost to the lake, etc. up to the more modern occurences with Alessa, Harry, James, Heather etc. aren't because of any individual but the town itself. Silent Hill is alive and warps both itself and its inhabitants to make people suffer. The "Old Gods" that exist are actually corporeal manifestations of the town itself, a kind of middle man through which it can speak to people, as are the people it drives insane like Walter, Claudia, and Dahlia and beings such as Valtiel, Pyramid Head, The Butcher, and Maria. Eddie even states it flat out in Silent Hill 2: "This TOWN called you, James!" The land itself is poisoned by some force of evil, whether it's a demon, the devil itself, or something we can't hope to comprehend. The taunting Borley Haunted Mansion Guide and the sinister game show host from Silent Hill 2 are the town speaking directly to the player as a way of mocking them.
  • This entity, whatever it is, may well be the "Dragon" mentioned in graffiti throughout the games (Look out for it, it turns up prominently in SH2 and 3). I wouldn't put it past Team Silent to make a clue to the true nature of Silent Hill a background detail.
  • Furthermore, the town tries to exploit the cult into creating these "gods" as avatars for its power, so the town can extend its influence elsewhere. The Red Pyramids are as much as the town can do by itself, and they are unable to leave it.
  • To elaborate on this theory, the town needs to "feed" in order to keep itself alive and to make itself stronger. That's why it attracts emotionally broken or vulnerable people to it, it needs their pain and suffering as well as their belief in it, which allows it to grow in influence.
  • Based on the theory below: the endings where the characters leave are a lot less hopeful than they appear. We know from Silent Hill 4 and Homecoming that Silent Hill's influence has begun to infect other towns, creating "Otherworlds" in Sheperds Glen and Palevale. When the people leave, they carry Silent Hill's corruption with them, acting like disease carriers. Some people the town swallows whole, others are chosen as its dark messengers.
  • Downpour confirms this, at least partially — the town strikes back if you don't play by its rules and try to run. Going from the theory, it uses Anne's thirst for revenge to partially corrupt her, turning her into an unknowing enforcer of its sense of "justice".
  • Wouldn't this mean places like Henry's apartment and Shepard's Grove are it's offspring?
    • Are cult offshoots how it reproduces? Or does any ol' group of cultists living outside the town work?

Going off the WMG above...
Silent Hill isn't just alive, its a Yozi from [[Tabletop Game/Exalted]] It managed to evade imprisonment within Malfeas by escaping to the reality that this series takes place in. The god worshipped by the order in the town is its fetich soul, and the multiple monsters that fill the place are its various other souls.
  • It's possible title could be the Hill of Silence, Principle of Merciless Punishment.

The Town pulls in outsiders to act as its agents
This is a continuation of the above theory that Silent Hill is alive. The protagonists in each game are always outsiders (barring Shattered Memories), and as soon as they enter, the roads become blocked off by giant craters and canyons. However, at the end of the game, the protagonists are able to leave the town, thus implying that the roads have repaired themselves. Why? Because they have completed the goal the Town wanted them to complete, and now that they have served their purpose, Silent Hill is able to let them leave. This is also why Travis was stuck in Silent Hill. Obviously, he doesn't leave because he can't. The giant canyons are blocking the exits. It's also stated in-game that Alessa was using Travis as a pawn, and it's not too much of a stretch to see Alessa as an avatar of the Town's power.
  • But why does the town go to so much effort to kill the protagonists, then? The implication is clearly that the town wants you to either die, or get a bad ending. I've yet to see a game where it's easier to get the bad endings as opposed to the good except for Origins, which didn't happen, and besides which the good ending in Origins must have happened, otherwise Travis Grady wouldn't be giving anyone a lift in Homecoming. Furthermore, all of the towns infected by Silent Hill are close to the original town. Clearly, Silent Hill's power is expanding geographically outwards over the years. After all, the town feeds on pain, suffering, and despair, does it not? In Silent Hill 2, which was essentially a run-of-the-mill Soul harvesting for the town, two out of three people gave into the town at least, and it's implied all three gave in eventually, and that's just one batch. Silent Hill is expanding in power not because the victorious protagonists are carrying its taint, but because their few and far between victories aren't enough to contain the town's power. The agents the town creates are people like Walter Sullivan or, possibly, James Sunderland, people who are thoroughly dominated by the town's nightmares and eventually cease fighting them and turn to worshiping them instead.
  • 'Downpour' casts doubt on this — in both endings where Murphy spares Anne, the town lets them go, despite Anne still having a thirst for revenge in "Truth and Justice" that is easily sated. Also, despite the town having ample opportunities to kill Murphy, it only directly attacks the DJ, who was actually running from his problems and thus, providing an infinite food source for the town in his little station.

The Town gets its power from irrevocably tainted local gods that used to be simple nature spirits.
A lot of the information on the Native American tribes that lived in Silent Hill suggest it was a place of benign or positive power. Then the European colonists come in and kill off all of the Native Americans, and start to royally fuck up the place - tortures, plagues, murders, bloodbaths culminating in our cherry pal Pyramid head and the once benign spirits Mind Raped and driven mad by the bloodshed, becoming the gibbering, bloodlusting, death-worshiping entities that control the town now. To go along with that, the gods were a solar goddess (The God) who was twisted into a god of death, Xuchilpaba/Valtiel the god of rebirth and a psychopomp distorted into a god of being trapped in repeating cycles of torture and a horrible life from which there is no escape, and fertility god Lobsel Vith/Incubus being twisted into a god of rape and sexual abuse. Each became a dark reflection of their former self.

Alternatively, Silent Hill is in a region of the planet that crosses over with the Immaterium
Throughout the series (and even this page) several constants emerge regarding the town; thought becomes reality, physics is vetoed, the omnipotent ruling deities can only exert slight influence outside of their realm, humans are all at the same time willing servants, beneficiaries, manipulated tools, and consumed sustenance, and their ultimate fate is either as mindless, endlessly tormented perversions or as supreme deities themselves, gifted with powers equivalent to the beings they serve, all of which stinks of the Warp. Worshipped originally as a place of safety and healing, the region generally behaved as such, but as tragedy after disaster after continuous death and suffering affected the inhabitants, it began to reflect this, becoming vindictive, malicious, and hungry. The cult arose around the desire to serve this power and obtain its rewards, further bolstering its influence over the Materium, meanwhile acquiring elements from and merging with other religions until the concept of the Holy Mother emerged.

The region was still relatively powerless, however, until Dahlia succeeded in ascending Alessa to daemonhood (hence her immortality), the process itself and Alessa's new abilities allowing the two realities to merge and create the the nightmarish Dark World between them we all know and fear. Those that travel to this town are not intentionally called there, rather drawn towards the promises of Chaos, both wonderful and terrible. The power extending beyond the town in the third and fourth games and Homecoming are the result of especially devoted followers bringing it with them.

It's all the fog
Remember in the first Silent Hill game, there's a lot of references to White Claudia, a plant whose seeds contain PTV, a hallucinogenic drug. And considering that everyone in Silent Hill sees different things, maybe they really weren't monsters?... This doesn't necessarily explain everything in the series, but it definitely explains a lot. They aren't monsters, they're just other people. They attack you because they think that you are monsters as well.
  • In Silent Hill 1, the entire game was just a hallucination caused by the PTV. The baby at the end of the game isn't special at all, and Cheryl is either lost in the town, or she was one of the childlike monsters in the school.
  • In Silent Hill 2, the note is just James losing his mind. Laura doesn't see any monsters because she's the only one without any trauma influencing her hallucinations.
  • I can't remember much about Silent Hill 3, but I'm pretty sure there's a lot of white smoke around to explain the monsters when you aren't in Silent Hill itself.
  • I can't explain Silent Hill 4 with this. Maybe it's all just a dream, though that is really a lazy explanation.
    • Walter did some crazy stuff back in his Silent Hill days, but before he died and Henry got the apartment, he mainly tended to (and sampled) his sunlamp garden of White Claudia. SH4 was merely the result of Henry looking through an old photo album while experiencing the world's worst contact high from the apartment's walls and carpeting.
  • And I haven't played any of the other games.

The town uses the psych of the people that came there long after they are gone.
I was talking with my friends about why Pyramid Head apears in the games that don't have James in them, even though PH is supposed to be a representation of Jame's self-loathing. This also applies to the manniquins. We figured that after you go to Silent Hill, the town has your fears "on file" that it could use for other people who come there. This is also why the town is still shaped like all of Alyssa's fears even though she is now out of the picture.

Silent Hill 2 and 4 happen the same time and are DIRECTLY related as 1 and 3
As we all know except for 2...and Origins/Homecoming, the main games are connected. 1-3 deal directly with Alessa and the cult of Silent Hill, outsiders using Silent Hill to exploit outsiders and "awaken" the god. Silent Hill 2 and 4 are just as connected. Besides the Protagonists "choosing" for themselves to awaken the forces of Silent Hill (Walter explicitly to try and become one with his Mother, James "not knowing" the full consequences when he decides to go to Silent Hill after getting the letter from his Wife.) James's father is a huge hint.

James's father said his son and daughter in law went missing three years ago, the same time James said his wife died. Obviously, this meant the games take place within the time frame of each other (I.E James went to the town, 3 years after her death)

But let's deal with a common theme between Restless Dreams and The Room. Both protagonists are trying to resurrect a loved one, James his wife and Walter his "Mother". Both have other people called to Silent Hill who aren't related to the cult at all. Finally, both have people the main characters who can perceive (James' father in 4 and the little girl in 2), who are immune to the town monsters themselves. But both have another connection as well, a Rebirth Ritual.

Let's assume for one moment, that writing on Mary's letter in 2 never existed in the first place. That Silent Hill didn't write the letter either. James was planning to use the 21 Sacraments, and his mind was split in two like Walter's was. One purely is the desire itself to reunite with his wife (Maria), the other is him trying to fulfill that desire (James himself). Throughout, the game he stumbles upon people who are affected by the magic in the town and that are there to help him reach a revelation and to reach one themselves. Both are deprived of really dealing with their own demons by James, and in one case explicitly killed by him. Walter himself killed victims that could be affected by the power of the town and Henry himself is deprived of (most) opportunities to overcome his apathy by other victims perhaps?

Hell, James might have been wandering Silent Hill for three years! How the hell did a normal girl NOT called to the town get there anyway?

The entire game is James deciding whether or not to invoke the final part, or the part Walter did when he offed himself (or perhaps, since he gathers the items needed for it in Restless dreams, is about to invoke it) of the Rebirth Ritual. In all the canon endings (the ones from the first edition of the game), James decides against it, unlike Walter who must be stopped. James realizes whatever final step he must take in the town isn't worth it, thanks to Mary's interference, of course. She convinces James, in one form or another, that actually performing the rebirth ritual is a pretty fucking bad idea.

There are others ways to unite with her. Unfortunately, two of those ideas aren't as good either. It even serves as a deconstruction (though not one that could be as mean as it could be) of a player's actions in the games. In one ending, he uses the power of the town to bring out the desire for his wife to live, because he is intent on risking himself to saving a being he continues to realize the hollowness or falseness of, a desire that will fade since it only existed in the presence of Mary herself. If one holds no value on their life, I.E chooses to preserve health items and constantly examine any hints (I.E. check the inventory often... like the knife) for his wife, he is a man who cannot live without the 'real her' and decides to kill himself now that he knows he can never really be with her again. The final ending is James coming to the realization that though Mary was gone for good, and he would do anything to get her back, that she wanted him to be happy and move on with his own life (I.E. act like a normal person in that situation, and use the damn health packs). But that doesn't mean he can't "bring her back to life" in one small genuine way. By taking the little girl in the town as his own child, he decided to accomplish what his wife really wanted to in life. To start a family.

Hence why the fog of Silent Hill still exists in the end of good ending of Silent Hill 2. He is still in the process of a very PRIVATE rebirth ritual. One that like Walter's, won't actually bring his Mother to life, or in this case his wife. But one that will end with end with some happiness for James and one that truly shows he appreciates what his wife wanted. The fog will exist for his entire life (or the girl's), but once it clears for him he will have successfully "resurrected" his wife.

All unlike Walter, who because his Mother never existed will be deprived of even the happiness the bad ends of 2 provide. The best thing that can happen for him IS to be driven off by Henry. Yes, he dies and his soul is trapped in Silent Hill... but there was a reason Mary didn't cheer James on. To keep someone you care about truly alive, you have to move on with your life and live it to the fullest. Ironically, Henry gets this lesson just as much second-hand from viewing what happened to Walter, and learns to overcome his general apathy because of it.

Silent Hill is a domain in Ravenloft.
Consider. Silent Hill is a town perpetually surrounded in fog and mist. Almost everybody that comes into it from the outside is confronted by creatures meant to embody one of their weaknesses or personality traits. And they are always punished and/or confronted with aspects of their past, which serve to punish them in fitting and ironic ways.
  • But the Silent Hill protagonists are still capable of admitting to and attempting to atone for their mistakes. Anyone who still has a shot at redemption is beneath the Demiplane of Dread's notice- a Darklord would never even consider the possibility that they had anything to atone for, because that would involve accepting that they were in the wrong.

The characters are all suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning
Due to the fires in the coal mines. The "foggy" town is real, but the monsters and "alternate" town are just hallucinations.

TV Tropes is responsible for the Foggy Silent Hill and the Otherworld.
The servers are starting to expand into extra-dimensional space. The city of Silent Hill is just unlucky enough to be where this expansion is occurring. As a result, it's wreaking havoc on the reality in the town.

Nobody dies in Silent Hill.
Everyone who gets killed is already dead (from assisted suicide, Death By Cop, illness or injury, etc.), or just a construct. There is only one real person in the world beside Silent Hill at any given time, maybe two if one enters because of the other (Harry looking for Cheryl, possibly Elaine being dragged into it by Henry). The sacrifices in SH4? Pale imitations of people who merely became more pale once Henry started messing with Silent Hill. The monster-worshipping guy who got eaten? Carried away to a Happy Place (not the afterlife), if he even existed in the first place. The Movie, of course, is not a part of this guess.

Silent Hill is just one type of its kind.
The other type is the exact opposite. It's nice to you, in personal ways, but all it wants to do is kill you, that's all. Example: The Other World from Coraline!

Silent Hill is a part of the deepest fears of your SOUL
self explanatory

Silent Hill Wants to Help You
It seems counter-intuitive, considering that the entire town is trying to murder you horribly, but I think the town is really trying to torment its 'victims' in order to help them overcome their problems rather than just to be mean. Take Silent Hill 2; the town torments James with monsters, but only because he himself feels the need to be tormented. Laura, on the other hand, who has no deep psychological complexes, has no problems there. Furthermore, while the town constantly blocks James' path with obstacles, none are insurmountable, even though it would have been easy to make them so; every door has a key, accessible as long as James is willing to play along: much like a psychologist who can help you only if you are willing to explore your issues. Sometimes, the town even helps James... let's not forget that it litters the street with health drinks and ammo along with monsters. Also, consider Pyramid Head, an invincible but avoidable tormenter, who actually helps you on your way several times, draining the water in the apartment and knocking you into your next area in the hospital. The way to defeat him is coming to the realization you don't need him anymore, at which he gives you your next major benefit by handing you an egg. Even the tormenting that the town does is that which its victims essentially want... they feel wracked with guilt and dread and, on a deep level, want the town to hurt them. The endings of SH2 can be seen as progressively better in terms of how successful James' therapy went. 'Maria' would be a bad ending because it represents James running away from his final problem before confronting it, 'In Water' would be a medium ending because James comes to terms with all that's happening but unfortunately succumbs to despair, and 'Leave' would be a positive ending because he accepts and moves on from his problem, seeking redemption by fulfilling Mary's wish to raise Laura as their own...I consider 'Rebirth' to be a joke ending. The biggest dangers James encounters are from Silent Hill's other, less-successful 'patients', both in Eddie trying to shoot him down and in Angela encouraging suicide. Once James' therapy is over, Silent Hill does nothing to stop him from leaving.
  • The same could be said for all the protagonists. For people who are trapped by something like delusions or guilt, the town gives them the chance to be free. For people more interested in revenge, like Heather, the town gives her the chance to get back at the order.
    • "Downpour" more or less confirms this. In both endings where Murphy lets Anne live — thus proving that he isn't a heartless murderer — the town lets both of them go, with the knowledge of who actually disabled Frank for Anne to do with as she may. Even "Closed Circle" supports this — throughout the game, Murphy has shown he's a pretty nice guy despite the blood on his hands, and the town is giving him a second chance to accept the truth and make amends. Only in "Execution" does it decide he's a lost cause and just kill him already.

Silent Hill is a testing ground for chemical weapons
The town is controlled by the military (hence why nobody knows where it is), with test subjects being brought in from prisons or insane asylums. The jammed doors are mostly hiding monitoring equipment, while the siren is actually a warning that a test is about to begin. The playable characters were used to test either less-lethal agents or to test the effects of very limited exposure, resulting in severe hallucinations but not usually death.

Silent Hill and Forbidden Siren are in the same continuity.
You know it to be true.

Silent Hill is an extension of the Zone
The cult was being influenced by C-Consciousness in order to extend their influence, in the process causing the town to be overrun with anomalies. The monsters are a combination of mutants and hallucinations caused by psi emissions. Because it's a long way from the reactor, there are fewer artifacts and the creatures are generally less dangerous.

The Silent Hill movie is actually a book...
...written by Harry (Good Ending) and James (Leave Ending). It's a fictionalized account of their time in Silent Hill. This could potentially explain a lot of things in the movie.

  • They were originally going to include both of their stories, but the publisher advised them to stick with one. This one is based on Harry's search for Cheryl.
  • Rose Da Silva — Harry didn't feel comfortable using a Self-Insert, so he created Rose as a stand-in. Her personality is based on his late wife, who may also be her namesake. This may work since we never learn Mrs. Mason's name.
  • He changed Cheryl's name to Sharon to distance himself from the character.
  • Officer Gucci and Mr. Da Silva — The publisher wanted a specific number of pages, so they were created for filler.
  • He kept Cybil's name to honor her memory. Also, he had her die in a Heroic Sacrifice because he thought that she deserved a nobler death than the one she had.
  • Dahlia and the Cult — James was in charge of this part of the story. All Harry mentioned is that Dahlia was Alessa's mother that gave her up to the church. He assumed that Dahlia loved her daughter and was forced into giving her up. Based on Alessa's powers and that the Cult was associated with the Church, he figured that they were trying to erase any dark influences in town. Harry wanted to rewrite this but the publisher wanted to keep it.
  • The Janitor — The rape part was added due to James's memory of Angela. Since he failed to save her, he gave some of her backstory to Alessa. The Janitor was severely punished because James felt guilt over Angela's death.
  • The Monsters — Most of the monsters were added by James. This explains the armless figure, the sexualized nurses, and Pyramid Head. Harry took some creative liberty with them, which is why Pyramid Head is different from his game version.
  • Chrystabella — She was added because they needed a main antagonist. Harry wrote her with Dahlia in mind.
  • The Ending — Rose and Sharon get home, but it's in the white dimension. This is to symbolize that while both Harry and James got away, they'll never truly escape the influences of Silent Hill.

In the case of changes I didn't mention (Lisa, Kauffman, etc.), they can be blamed on their meddling publisher. Harry and James have no choice but to obey because the need the money since they are both single fathers (Harry to baby Heather and James to Laura).

Alex read the book
Based on the above theory, Alex is actually a mental patient. He read the book sometime in his life and it now influences his hallucinations. He never went back to Shepherd's Glen and there were no sacrifices. Josh drowning wasn't his fault. However, he feels guilty because he secretly resented his brother for having all the attention.

The sacrifice thing came up because of the burnings in the book. He made his parents out to be the bad guys because part of him blames them for everything. The other sacrifices were around Josh's age so they probably hung out with him. After Josh's death, Alex didn't see them as much and his insane mind twisted this to mean that they were dead.

This theory explains the presence of Pyramid Head and the random cult members.

The Silent Hill our heroes visit is what's going to happen in the near future.
There were whispers amongst the Native Americans of the Silent Hill area that neighboring Toluca Lake, known as The Place of Silenced Spirits, possessed a great power within it. It's possible that sometime in the future, this power erupts from the Lake, and tears the world asunder. This would first result in a ghost world full of fog (the Fog World), but clear up to reveal a swarm of vicious monsters. They'll devour those few who weren't lost in the fog, and soon be the only "living" things left on Earth (the Otherworld). The power in the Lake, or perhaps even a different power in the town itself, is pulling people forward through time, so they'll know what to expect and warn the rest of the world.

Silent Hill is the ultimate example of Your Mind Makes It Real.
Self explanatory — In all of the Silent Hill games, even in Silent Hill 4, the environment and the creatures revolve completely around someone's thought's/psyche/delusions etc, not any kind of outside source like in most video games/movies. Everything is in the protagonist/antagonist's mind; all Silent Hill does is bring it to life. Since people with dark histories are compelled to Silent Hill, it's a dream world of the bad kind (nightmare world).

Mira isn't Pyramid Head's dog...
Pyramid Head is her dog. if we take into consideration that Mira is the one controlling silent hill, because God is dog backwards. If she is the God of Silent Hill, then what's stopping her from not actually being some higher being and she is simply taking dog form so that she is not suspicious. Any people who discover her, she considers them the 'winners' of the game of Silent Hill and she brings them to her home planet of...that place where the Assassin's Creed aliens came from. Also, she owns pyramid head, because she is God so he owns all.

The Fog World and Other World already exist everywhere.
The reason that near-identical areas begin appearing in games that take place outside of Silent Hill itself (namely from 3 onwards) aren't new areas being "corrupted" or "created", but simply new pathways between the layers of reality being opened up. Silent Hill is just one of the thinnest borders between those layers, and the magics and rituals used by the cult don't actually "summon" anything, so much as just open doorways. The only reason the characters are typically boxed into certain areas are due to the influence (conscious or otherwise) of people with power over the layer they happen to be in at the moment not wanting them to be able to move on until certain tasks are finished.

Silent Hill, Shepherd's Glen and Ashfield are indeed all on an Alien spaceship which has been taken over by the Order's God.
Not only does Shattered Memories's Alien ending claim that it is but The Fire Dungeon and Steel Dungeon in Book of Memories both look like the insides of a spaceship specifically: The Fire Dungeon looks like an engine room while the Steel Dungeon looks like a weapons production facility. I propose that Silent Hill was originally a town cursed by a Raven god's plagues and ended up drawing the intrest of The Order who sought resurrect their own God and the Alien's in desparation tried to teleport Silent Hill and all neighboring cities in order to keep the Order from resurrecting The God. Unfortunatly as as shown by the splintered sect of the Order shown in Homecoming The God had already been resurrected by the 21 Sacrements. Dahlia Gillespie's lack of knowledge of the Shepherd's Glen sect of the Order's own resurrecting of the God(either that or a rogue faction of the aliens ressurected her) led her to attempt to resurrect God through ether use of the 21 Sacrements or by burning girls. Both attempts only made the God's corruption stronger increasing her influence and allowing her to infect Alessia with her avatar. The place of The God's true resurrection is the Blood Dungeon from Book of Memories...

In relation to the above Howard Blackwood or should I say Lord Blackwood is the one who preformed the 21 Sacrements.
He gives out the Book of Memories and serves as the Otherworld's shopkeeper. His last name also seems like the last name of a noble so it's likely that he's not only the Founder of the Order yet also resurrected the God by using the 21 Sacrements thus explaining how Shepherd's Glen's splintered sect of the Order were able to make a pact with God. Shepard's Glen is constantly in a bluish Fog World(just like the Water Dungeon of Book of Memories) so it's likely the first city to be influenced by the God(Silent Hill got effected after Alessia got burned it a ritual to birth the God creating a rusted blood filled Nightmare). The Watery blue Fog World of Silent Hill 2, Homecoming and Downpour is the Shepherd's Glen Otherworld spreading to Silent Hill while the Rusted Bloody Otherworld is Silent Hill's own Otherworld/Nightmare(remember Shepherd's Glen only recieved the Bloody Rusted Otherworld after the pact was broken despite having the bluish Fog World since the begining) resulting from Alessia being impregnated with a manifestation of the Order's God(who has already been resurrected unbeknownst to Dahlia and the rest of the Order) and the 2 Otherworlds are fighting for dominance(in Silent Hill 2 they intersect while in Silent Hill Downpour Shepherd's Glen's Otherworld becomes dominant and visa versa in Silent Hill Homecoming).

Silent Hill is an "unstable area" where anybody is capable of everting, but no control as to when it manifests.
The quaint town is Layer 1 ("Innocence"), the foggy town is a mix of Layers 4 ("Desolation") and 5 ("Apprehension"), and the reddish and very dangerous environment is Layer 6 ("Confusion") or 7 ("Commotion"). It's only by sheer luck or some other outside factor that the other layers aren't explored nor are the "Everters" corrupted.

There is a Marker buried beneath Silent Hill (Spoilers for Dead Space)
Specifically, the original Marker, from which the Red Marker was developed. The town has a cemetery and a cult, people there experience hallucinations and encounter odd but familiar monsters, and James' story in particular seems very similar to that of Isaac. In addition, in the first Dead Space game, we learn that the first marker is of alien origin and was discovered on Earth, but it is never specified where specifically it was discovered, and every Silent Hill game has an ending that involves Aliens, so one can conclude that the Silent Hill aliens buried the marker under the land where the town was later built, and the marker itself was discovered by humanity centuries later.

Pyramid Head, Valtiel, the Butcher, the final boss of Origins and the Boogeyman are all one entity, taking on A Form You Are UNcomfortable With
To be specific, they're all the single spirit of the town, taking on different physical forms to torment and attack the protagonists.

Silent Hill is, consciously or otherwise, a metaphor for its own development cycle
(This is not my WMG, but a Chinese games analyst noticed the recurring motif of "abandoned/abused/murdered child" in the SH games and started wondering if there was anything metatextual about it.) Like Alessa/Travis/Walter/Alex, Team Silent is composed of developers, artists, programmers, and etc. "orphaned" from other projects who have a love/hate relationship with Konami (and who, like most other Japanese companies, likely literally saw itself as the parent that—pre-bubble, anyway—would take care of an employee for life in exchange for loyalty to the point of sacrificing oneself's time, name, and even life if necessary); like Harry/James/Heather/Alex/Murphy, Team Silent have had to watch their "baby" (whatever artistic vision/ambition they had for the series) sacrificed to the altar of the SH brand and fan/corporate expectations, and sometimes they themselves had to be the one to put languishing dreams out of their misery. In PT, the child doesn't even get to be born, but is only a bloody fetus in a brown paper bag! Clearly somebody saw the writing on the wall and was sending out one last cry for vengeance. This puts even the Golden Ending of each game in a darker light—yes, the abandoned child is reborn and given new life, but only to relive the same tragedy over and over again (since all that accomplishes is to make New Game+ possible and what kind of monster replays SH after reaching the Golden Ending, You Bastard!?).



Past Life is a partial origin story for the Order (Heavy Spoilers).
Over the course of Past Life, we learn that Jeb Foster, the main character, is being haunted by the vengeful spirits of those he has killed. We also learn that Foster used to chase American Indians off their land for wealthy people and the government. During one of these raids, he murdered a pregnant girl named Awinita while she was giving birth and while her mother, Inola, was present. Inola, who apparently survived the encounter, takes her vengeance at the story's conclusion. She causes Awinita's spirit, who has been stalking Jeb throughout the comic, to be reborn through Jeb's unborn child, killing his wife Esther in the process. The comic ends while Jeb's house burns down around him, as well as several other buildings in Silent Hill. The final panel is a close up of the baby, surrounded by circles vaguely reminiscent of the Halo of the Sun, the Order's symbol. Earlier in the comic, the town's main church is overseen by a Reverend Stone, who is most likely an ancestor of prominent Order member Jimmy Stone. Now, my theory goes like this: the Order we all know and love was formed in the aftermath of Past Life. The birth of this special child at the same time as a great fire is the likely inspiration for the use of ritual burnings within the Order, especially the association of the birth of God with burning a young girl. I think that this marks the beginning of the incorporation of Native American elements into the Order's theology, under the guidance of Reverend Stone and possibly Inola. Now, I say this is a partial origin story because Past Life takes place in 1867, and we know from Homecoming that the Order was in existence in the 1850s, when the founding families of Shepherd's Glen left Silent Hill over some form of religious dispute. I think that the cult texts found under the town hall in Shepherd's Glen reflect what the Order may have been like before the reforms instituted by Reverend Stone after the rebirth of Awinita created the Order as we came to know it in the older games.

Jeb and Esther from Past Life are ancestors of the Gillespie family.
To begin with, Esther bears a strong physical resemblance to Dahlia Gillespie from the first game. This resemblance can be seen in this drawing of the character, especially around the eyes. She even has similar taste in fashion, wearing an article of clothing vaguely similar to Dahlia's signature neck tie! Furthermore, Esther is pregnant at the time of the story. However, while the infant may be physically like Esther, the old Indian woman Inola uses the resident magic of Silent Hill to cause her daughter Awinita to be reborn in the body of Esther's child. The magic used to accomplish this could explain why psychic powers manifested in Dahlia's daughter Alessa. Physically, the Gillespies would be related to the Fosters, but spiritually, they are Native American.

The reason the geographic location of Silent Hill is not clear.
  • Because Silent Hill does not HAVE a specific geographic location. All of the various clues throughout every Silent Hill game point to it being somewhere in the Northeastern United States, BUT the clues always point somewhere completely different from prior clues. The reason is that Silent Hill is the physical manifestation of a collective psychosis created by the cult. Each of the members of the cult came from somewhere else, ultimately being drawn to a single place where the "town" of Silent Hill would be created. Each of these clues are just little memory fragments from cult members.
    • Or perhaps Silent Hill doesn't have a specific geographic location because it doesn't WANT to be found by outsiders; it'll find you when it's ready for you.

Silent Hill doesn't just take negative aspects and make them real...
  • It also takes positive aspects of a person's psyche, personality and possibly even hobbies and makes them real, albeit in a twisted fashion. Take the Floatstinger boss; it looks like a moth or a butterfly, which may partially represent Alessa's fascination with insects, particularly butterflies as she collected them. If it can turn something someone fears/hates and turn them into a monster(such as all the dog monsters, since Alessa was afraid of dogs), it can probably take things a person likes/is fascinated by and twists them into grotesque parodies of what they originally were.

Silent Hill isn't trying to torture people, it's trying to HELP them.
Whenever anyone is trapped in Silent Hill, they are plagued by visions of their personal demons made manifest. Monsters that are created based on their worst fears show up everywhere they go, driving them into insanity as they are forced to face their worst fears over and over again. Most go insane, most end up getting killed by these manifestations, or else driven so mad that they kill themselves. But the protagonists stand and fight, facing up to their own demons and defeating them. (Well, usually anyway). Now consider this... what if that's what Silent Hill WANTS them to do? What if it's creating these monsters not to torture them, but in order to give them a chance to face up to and exorcise their personal demons? By turning a psychological trauma into a physical entity that can (usually) be destroyed, Silent Hill is giving its victims a chance to purge their minds of this "demon" that is crippling them. Essentially, it's like therapy, only much more dangerous. In that sense, the town might actually be considered a benevolent entity, rather than a malevolent one.


Alessa Wasn't Actually a "Good Little Girl".
Literally the only windows that we get into Alessa's childhood are from the cult, some limited information from Dahlia, and an expository monologue from, well, Alessa. Obviously nothing could make the behavior of the cult acceptable, but it's entirely possible that neither side is telling the entirety of the truth.

Through the view of modern psychology, we know that revenge in the real world is usually sought less as an attempt to right past wrongs, and more often as an attempt by someone to hold up or to express their own power when they feel that it has been challenged. Obviously an immediate lashing out could have been out of anger for everything that she had lost, but Alessa has been planning and carrying out her revenge for decades when she apparently had the ability to just restore herself to health and move on with her life. She did this through Sharon, to an extent, but only so that she could carry out her revenge without feeling guilty about it. When her two halves are intended to be re-united at the end of the film, she still expresses egotistical traits that would be inappropriate even for a young child in keeping her mother trapped in the Fog World. It seems likely that she has no desire for a normal life, and takes a perverse pride in being "the reaper".

By the point when the movie is set, the circumstances could then fall into the Black and Black Morality of a supernaturally powerful malignant narcissist fighting a child-sacrificing cult. Even if she was dangerous as a child that doesn't justify the cult's actions, of course, but how much of that actually happened and how much Alessa made up to keep Rose from falling into Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy is hard to know.

Rose got the Bad Ending.
Some of Dahlia's dialogue near the end of the movie strongly implies that Rose made the wrong decision in allowing Alessa to exact revenge on the cultists. Essentially, Rose is guilty of paying evil unto evil, and only too late seems to realize that her mistake has trapped her in the foggy Silent Hill forever.

The bluish, fog-bound version of Silent Hill is, in reality, Purgatory.
There's a few hints around the movie nudging at that. Like, how Alessa's body was the the only one aging in thirty years, how many of the surviving citizens are dressed in the exactly same clothes as they were in her memories as a child, and how everyone finds themselves in there after seemingly escaping a lethal accident. For example, the clothes of the citizens looking singed at best, and downright charcoal-black at most cases, some of them dressed in funerary ones, and how Rosa woke up after violently slamming her head in her car's driving wheel, and Cybil crashing her motorcycle and only walking away from it with a bloody brow. Cybil's bike is even shown again at the end, looking too twisted for the driver to survive that accident.

Furthermore, the lack of aging, the stillness of the citizen's clothing and hairstyle from 30 years to present time, and how they're too eager to deliver judgement to the wicked could be interpreted as how the souls in the purgatory act in a desperate plea to be saved from an afterlife in Hell. Which cannot happen. Alessa have a claim on their souls and want them all driven down there for everything they've done to her. Not to mention that Paradise looks like no place for those who eagerly harm a child for witchcraft. All they do in order to survive, the sirens announcing the coming of darkness, their sheltering at a church and their prayers warding them from harm, and how easily they brush off the demise of one of them, in the end, can be seen as a display of how far can the souls of the wicked go, in order to dodge their fair comeuppance. Their judgement was set since the burning of Silent Hill, but they remain defiant to the end. And Alessa is more than happy to deliver them such end.


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