Silent Hill 2 – The Red Pyramid

In my restless dreams,

I see that town.

Silent Hill

Your wife is dead.  She died years ago.  And yet somehow, she sent you a letter.  You have arrived in the town that once symbolized everything you and her had.  Now it’s a ghost, haunting you.  You don’t know why you got this letter now, but you’re going to find out.

But all is not well in this sleepy little vacation town.  It’s populace is all but vanished, it is blanketed in fog, and twisted abominations walk the streets.  With weaponry you find throughout the town, you fight all you can, and run from the rest, meeting other people every once in a while who don’t seem quite right in the head.

Eventually, you find an apartment complex, squalid and abandoned.  Searchging through it, unlcoking doors, and fighting monsters, you eventually find this.

It stands silently, separated from you by metal bars.  How long it’s been there, you can’t say.  It doesn’t move.  Eventually you find a way past the bars, but when come to the spot where it once was, it’s gone.

The next two times you find it, it is raping another monster.

 

You come upon the scenes unexpectedly, and find some of the twisted, horrifying creatures that has been hounding you reduced to nothing more than victims itself.  This new monster is asserting itself as a greater monster than the others, so far as to make them its prey.  But it has a main target, and once it sees you, it discards its victims and draws its weapon.

What follows is a fight for survival.  You cannot beat it, only stay alive and slow it down long enough for something to call it away.

This monster is Pyramid Head.  It is your own personal tormentor.  You will be forced to face it again and again, and it will never leave you unscathed.

There are a myriad of places to find articles on Pryamid Head’s symbolism, but that is not the focus on this post.  This is going to be looking at the physical aspects of Pyramid Head and how he is used throughout the game.  First we will focus on what it wears.

image

It isn’t easy to tell what Pyramid Head is wearing.  It could be a butcher’s smock, a ceremonial dress, or a burlap sack.  But there is a key detail to this outfit: its condition.  Specifically, the squalid, disgusting state it is in.  Grime has discolored it, blood stains it, and one can only guess what other fluids it has been coated with.  This outfit seems to match with the limited amount of skin that is visible.  Its arms, horrible, pale, and dirty.  And of course, there is the stand out feature of Pyramid Head.

 

What rests upon Pyramid Head is not a helmet, it is a cage.  A, heavy,  jagged, rusty, it no doubt weighs at least dozens of pounds.  Existence with this thing trapped upon one’s head would be absolute hell.  Even in the way it stands and moves, its easy to see how horrible it must feel.

Adding to that weight, is Pyramid Head’s weapon: The Great Knife.

It is simply what its name implies, a massive knife.  But, much like the rest of Pyramid Head’s design, the knife is in extremely poor condition  The texture of it looks spotty and with P-Head dragging it around behind him all the time, the blade is nicked, damaged.  It wouldn’t cut, it would tear.  The weight of the weapon is immense, so much so that Pyramid head must drag it behind itself at all times, bending back, putting itself in an uncomfortable stance to accommodate the item.

In fact, on the subject of stance:

 

Pyramid Head’s stance is another major aspect of its disturbing design.  Its back is arched backward and it holds his massive blade in one hand.  When walking, it drags the weapon behind it, held back by it’s weight.  When it swings, it seems like a herculean effort, and that’s the only reason it doesn’t kill you without even trying.  Everything is an effort for this creature, walking, swinging its blade, its very existence is a trial.

 

And yet it still pursues you with unwavering determination.  And you never see it coming.

Most of the time, when you are faced with this horror, it is not announced.  No warning is given, it is simply there.

Despite it not being this post’s goal, we will briefly touch on symbolism.  Pyramid Head is the manifestation of the main character’s, a man by the name of James Sunderland, resentment and sexual frustration toward his wife, who was terminally ill and had become quite verbally abusive by the time she died.  As such, it haunts James, a sign of guilt that he cannot escape.  He has no warning or control of when it will appear to torment him once more, and much like the  monster, it does not stop until he forces himself to face and confront it, manifested in the game as your final battle with Pyramid Head.

Since its creation, Pyramid Head has become the icon of the Silent Hill series.  The perfect blend of symbolism, aggression, and appearance elevates it onto a new level of antagonists, and very few will ever come close to achieving its reputation.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s