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Spiral Staircase

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SpiralStaircase

The staircase.

This must be what Hell is like.
—Eileen Galvin descending the staircase.

The Spiral Staircase, marked as "Ever Downward" at its entrance, refers to the long, Otherworldly staircase that Henry Townshend and Eileen Galvin descend in Silent Hill 4: The Room. Henry first enters the staircase after rescuing Eileen from the impending danger in the Otherworld St. Jerome's Hospital. Henry and Eileen encounter the spiraling stairs many more times towards the end of their journey. Presumably, the spiral staircase was created and used by Walter Sullivan to access the many worlds his dark rituals had formed.

In Silent Hill: The Arcade, the staircase is visited and known as "19181993".

Design

The stairs are kept in a neat cylindrical form and are only interrupted by an occasional path jutting towards the center that leads to a portal hole. The staircase connects Walter's Otherworlds so that after exiting a certain world, Henry and Eileen are taken to the staircase where they can reach the next world. At first, fog surrounds the spiral, but as the stairs are followed down, the atmosphere takes on a more sinister and dark appearance. Occasionally, disturbing displays can be seen off the side of the staircase, including twitching dolls and animals. At the bottom of the stairs is the door to Room 302 of the Past, where Joseph Schreiber stayed before Henry took up the apartment.

Symbolism

SH4 staircase

Henry and Eileen at one of the various holes found while descending the staircase.

The staircase can be described as the manifestation of Walter Sullivan's inner mind: his dark intentions, his disdain of reality and his fractured childhood spiraling out of control. Descending down the stairs can also represent the dive into Walter's psyche. The frequent displays around the stairs also allude to Walter's childhood and fears. Physically, the spiral staircase can also be likened to an umbilical cord, another symbol of Walter's desires. Like the Greedy Worm, the spiral staircase is long, continuous, and connects to the various Otherworlds Walter created. The darkness that builds up as Henry and Eileen descend can also be representative of the darkness Walter harbors in his heart, or his clouded obsession with his mother, which gets darker through time and eventually culminates into his mass murders.

Gallery

v · e · d
Characters
Major Characters
Henry Townshend - Eileen Galvin - Walter Sullivan - Cynthia Velasquez - Jasper Gein - Andrew DeSalvo - Richard Braintree - Joseph Schreiber
Other Characters
Frank Sunderland - Billy Locane - Bobby Randolph - Eric Walsh - George Rosten - Jimmy Stone - Mike - Miriam Locane - Peter Walls - Rachel - Rick Albert - Robbie the Rabbit - Sein Martin - Sharon Blake - Steve Garland - Toby Archbolt - William Gregory - James Sunderland - Mary Shepherd-Sunderland
Weapons
Aluminum Bat - Chainsaw - Handgun - Submachine Gun - Knife - Pipe - Bug Spray - Chain - Eileen's Bag - Golf Club - Nightstick - Pickaxe of Despair - Revolver - Rusty Axe - Riding Crop - Spade - Stun Gun - Torch - Wine Bottle
Monsters
Bottom - Conjurer - Ghost - Greedy Worm - Gum Head - Hummer - Patient - Sniffer Dog - The One Truth - Toadstool - Tremer - Twin Victim - Wall Man - Wheelchair
Locations
Albert's Sporting Goods - Ashfield - Bar Southfield - Garland's - Hotel South Ashfield - Room 302 - Room 302 of the Past - South Ashfield Heights - South Ashfield Station - Spiral Staircase - St. Jerome's Hospital - Toluca Lake - Water Prison - Wish House Orphanage
Terms
21 Sacraments - Death Machine - Haunting - Holy Candle - Manifestation - Map - Monster - Real World - Ritual of the Holy Assumption - Saint Medallion - Sword of Obedience - The Order - Walter's Otherworlds - Great Knife - Sexuality - Halo of the Sun
Archives
Items - Keys - Puzzles - Soundtrack - Limited Edition Soundtrack - Secrets and Unlockables - Memos
v · e · d
Characters
Eric - Tina - Bill - Jessie - Ryan - George - Emilie Anderson - Frank Anderson - Michelle Anderson
Hanna - Lorraine - Captain - Scott Fairbanks - Greys
Monsters
Creeper - Double Head - Greedy Worm - Gum Head - Hummer - Insane Cancer - Mama - Numb Body - Nurse - Phantom - Pyramid Head - Robbie the Rabbit - Scraper - Split Worm - Toadstool - Tremer - Tuberculosis
Locations
Brookhaven Hospital - Central Square Shopping Center - Jacks Inn - Labyrinth - Lakeside Amusement Park - Silent Hill Historical Society - Spiral Staircase - Toluca Lake - Toluca Prison
Terms
Flashlight - Fog World - Little Baroness - Monster - Otherworld - Radio - Real World - Siren - Welcome Sign

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