*pretty obvious this thread is full of spoilers, so no need for a spoiler alert really
Oh btw, these things I write are my thoughts to some of the things happening is Sh, not necessarily correct, but what I have gathered. If you can directly prove me wrong, by all means, please do so. I want to find out what is real in SH.*
If anyone has a save point right before you encounter Eddie for the last time, check this out. The place with the graves -> James, Angela, Eddie, Walter. Everyone apart from Laura and Maria/Mary has a catacomb, logical if you think about it. Laura -> child, innocent. Mary/Maria -> victim.
But what I don't see is… have a closer look on all of the gravestones... WHO THE HECK IS MIRIAM K? And why she is also labelled as "traitor"? Is that an inside Konami joke or something else? If anyone knows, please give me an answer, it’s been driving me nuts.
In reply to why/how the pyramid head exists, especially since James had never seen him before. I think Samael used the old executioner to play with James' mind. In the normal world, it can be argued that James kind of represents a pyramid head. How? By killing Maria over and over again, the pyramid head is there to remind James how he killed his own wife. The fact that the PH is faceless can also represent James' guilt and shame for his mercy killing and killing because he was fed up with Mary’s whining. This has a tremendous effect on James. He begins to fear himself.
I don’t know if James has multiple personalities, but it is obvious he neglects what he did, and carries on his life as if he was a selfless, caring man. His neglecting is also wrong. Death is not to be taken lightly. James is in Silent Hill for 3 reasons; to be punished, to remember who he really is, and to give Samael enough power to begin taking over SH in SH3 , so the monsters Heather would experience would be real as technically (as far as I can see) Heather is sin free. (Well, apart from the whole Alessa Cheryl complex) So Samael can finish off what he started in SH1.
Which all bring me to the point of SH2. I’m assuming two things. 1) sh2 is set between sh1 and sh3, 2) rebirth is the real ending.
How can Samael still live after Harry killed him in Sh1? He can, because only his physical form was killed. His essence still exists in Silent hill. However, for him to once again regain the strength to take on the entire town once again he needs someone to give him strength by calling on necromancy forces. As he still lives in spirit he can indirectly control the surroundings in Silent Hill. -> Through illusions, by letting those who’ve committed foul sins to experience them over and over again he can indirectly manipulate them to do his biddings. I can’t recall the name Samael be mentioned once in the game, perhaps of this reason. Would James be more aware of what he did in SH if he knew? The people who experienced their nightmares were only those who deserve to be punished. That is how Laura is a bystander, but she is at the same time Samael’s Ace card. She knew Mary, she could manipulate James by playing on his feelings, as he refuses to believe Laura’s acquaintance to Mary several times. I think Samael used her to help James realise he needs his wife back. By using "Lost Memories" and some other stuff, some of the old powers Samael used to have come to life again.
I reckoned rebirth was the proper ending after I played the “Born from a wish” scenario. The entire thing with Ernest, the ingredients, his daughter, it just matched as a parallel to James’ experiences.
As for the sirens of silent hill, particularly the one that makes the pyramid heads commit suicide. I’m not sure why, but I think the sirens sound symbolise the struggle between Metatron and Samael. When the siren went off in sh2 it could have been Samael saying James has suffered enough (James was now mad enough to fulfil the resurrection and by so giving Samael more strength later). It could have been Metatron coming to the rescue. The only thing certain is that it is there to say something is changing, for good or worse, just like Valtiel did whenever he appeared and turned a knob in Sh3.
That was a lot of info. Wrote it all a bit fast, sorry for my non-intelligent language, English isn’t my primary language. Hope it’s fairly understandable, and you all can see some of my points.