Until Dawn EP18: Jimmy Flamethrowers

By Shamus
on Jan 20, 2017
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

The Firebat tells Chris, “The Wendigo, he keeps you alive and aware and feasts on your organs one at a time.”

Uh. Unless the Wendigo has a medical degree, he does either one or the other. There are a small number of organs you can live without, but if the Wendigo begins grabbing stuff based on convenience then you’ll bleed out, pass out, or otherwise stop being alive before he gets very far into the meal.

But I guess the Stranger got proven wrong less than a minute later.

It’s obvious he needed to die. Nothing kills the tension like having a hyper-competentWe’re grading on a curve, here. badass looking out for you, and nothing raises the stakes like the bad guys taking out your strongest ally. On the other hand, this couldn’t be more brute-force if the writer reached into the frame and yanked the Stranger off stage like an unpopular vaudeville act. He died pretty much the instant his exposition had been delivered.

If nothing else, cut to some other part of the story for a bit so the two things aren’t right next to each other in the minds of the audience.

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Footnotes:

[1] We’re grading on a curve, here.


A Hundred!20827 comments. Suck it, base ten!

From the Archives:

  1. Tintenseher says:

    I didn’t follow this game when it came out because I thought it was just a dark horror slasher thing where all the characters were destined to die in horrible, gruesome ways, and that’s not really my thing.

    Shortly before this season began, I learned that not only is it possible to keep them all alive, but the story is actually about wendigos, and I was much more interested. It still has a lot of problems, but I really appreciate that it does something different, and a lot of the time does it pretty well.

    • Henson says:

      Whereas my reaction is the exact opposite. I’ve been expecting something intricately meta this whole time, and now it turns out it’s just boring ol’ monsters. What a disappointment.

      • Cinebeast says:

        Ah, you were expecting a Cabin in the Woods type deal?

        • Henson says:

          I suppose. Though it’s not really necessary. My main beef is that the story has done a complete 180 on its main focus, and the new threat is so non-mysterious and uninteresting.

          …At least, it is right now. About an hour after posting the comment above, it dawned on me how this story is going to develop, and the last major reveal seems like it could be a good one. But I’m not convinced that it will be good enough. We’ll have to wait and see.

          • Tintenseher says:

            I don’t think it will quite satisfy, but there is at least one more tidbit to be revealed that has led to a good amount of discussion elsewhere. That said, I probably would have preferred something intricately meta, too; what I like about the monsters here is that they’re not really common monsters (as the cast discusses in the episode). You don’t get a whole lot of wendigos in fiction. Even if these ones act like pretty much any other movie monster, I was glad they changed the dressing.

      • Sleeping Dragon says:

        I think the supposed meta comes from multiple playthroughs when the player becomes (or is expected to become?) less invested in the actual story of the characters and turns more into a director/puppetmaster exploring the choice tree either out of curiosity or to achieve specific results.

    • Benjamin Hilton says:

      I totally agree. I know most slasher flicks want you to dislike the characters so you want to see them die, but what really annoys me is when a movie does it’s best to get you to like characters, watch them struggle and work together…and then most of them die anyway.

      I may be in the minority here but if I watch a character go through an epic struggle to escape some scenario and successfully rejoin their friends, and then they die in the next scene because they weren’t the “designated main character” and only the “designated main character” is allowed to survive, it just annoys the crap out of me.

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        Id rather have a few relatable characters die,preferably a good death*,then spend hours watching a bunch of assholes asshole around.Best example:Predator.Now thats how you make a good slasher movie.

        *To save their friends,for example.

        • Benjamin Hilton says:

          I can agree with that, but there are allot of movies where someone will die to save a friend only to have that friend die later anyway. That’s the stuff that bugs me.

  2. “Do we have any evidence that getting bit turns you into a wendigo at all?”
    “No, not one evidence!”

    Not a single evidence!? :)

  3. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Ok,I really like that beginning.First,they are scared shitless,but are still trying to act brave.Second,mike doesnt just shoot at whoever enters,but rather waits to see if its a friendly.Third,being untrained in combat,of course he would be so easily disarmed by someone who is used to shit like this.Well done game.

    • guy says:

      My main complaint there is that it seems like a pretty stupid move for The Stranger. While it’s totally plausible that Mike wouldn’t react in time, it was also possible he’d reflexively pull the trigger if startled and/or do something stupid once disarmed by crazy flamethrower man.

      It seems like the smart option would be to take his hands off the flamethrower and start talking; he’d still be in arms’ reach if it went south and explaining seems unlikely to make Mike start shooting.

      • Leonick says:

        He probably didn’t need to disarm Mike, no. Probably wasn’t a very risky move either though. Mike was, to my surprise, actually observing some proper trigger discipline, wasn’t perfect but his finger wasn’t on the trigger. Should significantly lower the risk of a reflexive or accidental discharge.

  4. Grudgeal says:

    These guys seem to accept the whole “Algonquian fairy tale is true” premise pretty quickly. I mean, scary stuff is obviously going down, but the switch from “this is a sane and normal world” to “hey, magic exists” seems to pass on without much comment.

    Or maybe they’re just smart enough not to try and antagonize the guy with the flame-thrower to his face.

  5. I’ve discovered that the true tension in this game comes not from the events in the game, but when Josh has to make a choice.

    Now I’m wondering if a meta-game is possible, where you’re playing the companion of someone playing a survival horror game and you’re trying to influence which choices they make?

  6. baseless_research says:

    whatever happened to psychiatrist-guy? Does he just drop from the plot at this point or does he become relevant later?

    • Grudgeal says:

      As the episode reveals, the ‘psychiatrist’ in the game exists only in Josh’s head. Josh is psychotic and ‘sessions’ with an internal psychiatrist is basically a look into his internal psychology. This is why some of the answers you pick decide some of the fine details of Josh’s prank. He may show up later if Josh survives.

  7. “if the Wendigo begins grabbing stuff based on convenience then you’ll bleed out, pass out, or otherwise stop being alive before he gets very far into the meal.”

    That depends, the Wendigo are supernatural, it would not be that much of a stretch to imagine that the victim is kept alive through supernatural means as well.

    “But I guess the Stranger got proven wrong less than a minute later.”

    Well, the Wendigo kill threats by taking off the head. Cutting off heads seems to be a very effective way to deal with your enemies if you are Wendigo.

    “He died pretty much the instant his exposition had been delivered.”
    Isn’t that a horror movie trope though? If so then this was spot on. The game is also kinda evil in that it’s setup so the chance of you fucking up and stepping on that twig is high.

    Chris is very glad to have someone who knows what is going on and how to deal with it then a moment later he get him killed by screwing up. That kinda amuses me. The guy survived and handled and (mild spoiler) captured the Wendigos for years, and now a teenager got him killed. Heh.

    I also think it took guts as a writer to kill yourself out of the story just a few minutes later (as the writer/producer/director is The Stranger actor), it would be so easy to writer yourself as the main hero, this showed a lot of restraint.

    • guy says:

      Usually writers and directors get small roles because they have other jobs to be doing.

    • Zak McKracken says:

      I’m thinking the Stranger should not have been killed like that by a lone Wendigo in the woods because that must be a standard situation for him. It should have taken a much more unusual situation for that to happen. Especially since Josh then escapes the same Wendigo, without even a flamethrower. (Dangit, the flamethrower! They need to get that thing!)

      • “that by a lone Wendigo in the woods because that must be a standard situation for him”
        Actually the stranger has been hunting that particular there are multiple thanks to Mikes blunder at the Sanatorium earlier Wendigo for a year (technically longer that that but…) a alpha basically.
        The Wendigo was hiding in the trees and the stranger was in the open, and he could not use the flamethrower in the direction of Chris. And the Wendigos are very fast.

        The stranger prefer to scare a Wendigo off with flames and trap them (remember the moving hand in the basement at the Sanatorium?)

        “Especially since Josh then escapes the same Wendigo” do you mean Chris?
        Chris was lucky, able to run fast and had the shotgun to stall the Wendigo.
        And if you really meant Josh then he got dragged away, and never actually escapes

        • Zak McKracken says:

          Ohh, yes of course, I meant Chris!

          Was there any hint to tell the viewer that this was an alpha Wendigo? And I don’t remember what Mike’s blunder in the sanatorium was … the thing with the exploding barrel? Did that break the containment for some of the trapped Wendigos?

          …I think that would have made for some good amount of exposition for the Stranger. Or maybe the author would prefer we don’t discover to much info by means of having it explained to us? Which would make sense, but either I did not pay attention or the hints were actually hard to spot. A remark or two from the guy could have gone a long way. Unfortunately, he’s also in the habit of never explaining the important bits until the last second and expecting everyone else to jump at his command.

    • Syal says:

      Even without the supernatural angle, it’s a mistake to assume Wendigos a) grab organs out of convenience, and b) eat at a reasonable speed. I’m imagining they eat more like Gadan from Grandia 2.

      (And additional scenes because my Youtube abilities are weak.)

    • Benjamin Hilton says:

      What I’m not clear about as far as the game lore goes is how the wendigo spirits infect people. Do they just infect people on the mountain or do they (as Josh Viel said) infect someone who has already eaten human flesh. If it’s the former then it makes sense to just contain them as killing them would just release the spirit to infect any random person out for a hike. But if Josh Viel is correct and they need to wait for someone on the mountain to become a cannibal then…. I mean how often does that really happen in one specific area? Yeah the miners make sense, but if the stranger or his family had just killed the miners that became Wendigos then none of this would have happened. In the modern world the chances of someone eating humans to survive in the same area are super low, and even if it did then it would probably be like only one or two people decades or centuries after the first time, and therefore only one or two wendigos. Much easier to deal with than a whole pack and in the meantime no danger whatsoever.

      Edit: Even in the non modern world, I imagine that this is an uncommon enough occurrence that it would be better to kill them when they crop up than to let a pack of supernaturally strong predators roam around the mountain all the time.

      • MichaelGC says:

        I think I agree as to your preferred solution! – but anyway this is how the guy’s book puts it:

        The wendigo grows out of CANNIBALISM! When a human is desperate and craves food, trapped on the mountain in the fierce winter storms when he has eaten nothing for many days, the wendigo spirit will begin to possess him. Even the strongest man is weak to it. He will kill without remorse – often those companions who have travelled with him. He will eat the flesh raw from their corpses. I have seen this happen, many years ago, a craving for flesh that cannot be sated. And then the change begins.

        So, there’s a sort of two-way thing: you’re pushed further towards cannibalism by the spirit, and surrendering to the urge it is helping to engender is what seals the deal. What I’d want to know (if I were living in-universe) is whether it has to be hunger specifically that initially attracts the spirit, or if other forms of desperation would also lay you open to attack. (Or even just other forms of negative mentality, without there needing to be a desperation aspect at all.) It’d obviously make plenty of sense if it were only food-hunger, but (back out-of-universe again) might be more interesting if other forms of hunger also put you at risk.

        As a side note, I do like how in the book emphasis is used so you’ll likely glean the game-important aspects even if you just flick through it quickly. Another example of doing the little details very well.

        • Benjamin Hilton says:

          Yeah, I do agree that the detail work is nice. Although it does confirm that locking them up instead of killing them was just stupid. Even if a person only need be desperate and hungry, not actually choose cannibalism themselves, I still maintain that is an uncommon enough occurrence in a specific area for it to be a real issue.

      • Zak McKracken says:

        The way understand the reasoning:

        If you kill the Wendigos, they may be gone for a while, but they’ll eventually crop up in some other part of the world. If you can manage to contain all of them, which is a full-time job for one person, they won’t be a problem for the rest of mankind. If you kill them, they’ll be no problem for some time but when they re-appear (and free Wendigo spirits make cannibalism more likely!), it will be in an unpredictable place, and they will be free to do as they please — so actually trapping and locking them up makes a lot more sense. Especially if you could manage to (say) trap them in a collapsed mine or something…

        … crap, I just realized that this means the best way to deal with them for a very long time, is to get a bunch of miners trapped in a dead end of some shaft, then kill al the wendigos.
        Hope the miners resort to cannibalism, and then all the spirits go to the sealed-off shaft, and done! … maybe not the nicest solution ;/

        • Benjamin Hilton says:

          The Stranger continually tells them that “the mountain is cursed” implying it is a localized issue. I suppose he could just mean “it’s cursed at this moment because the wendigos are here, but it may not always be cursed and may not always have been cursed,” but if so it was very unclear. Also as is later revealed, both past events and future events show the freed wendigo spirits staying right where they are.

  8. I’ve been waiting for the story to get this far. I heard the game has a wendigo, and I FRIGGIN LOVE Wendigos. They’re unknown enough that there’s no “default” Wendigo the way there is for werewolves and vampires, so you get anything from incorporeal hunger ghosts to elk-skull headed shaggy beasts. Plus, the “winter starvation” angle is scary on its own, even without the cannibalism. I really dug the setup for the cannibalism in this game, by the way.

    Ooh, having watched about half of the video, I also like how they use the relative obscurity of the Wendigo to create tension in how it works. It’s not a totally new monster, so there are rules to it outside the story, but a lot of the audience probably doesn’t know them, and it makes sense that the teens don’t, so the bite on Emily has a lot more tension than in any zombie movie ever.

    • el_b says:

      other than these guys, my favourite wendigo is from the anthology tv show fear itself, the wendigo was played by doug jones and hes fucking awesome you should totally check it out. interestingly enough that episode was directed by larry fessenden, the flamethrower guy :)

      • “interestingly enough that episode”
        Larry‘s been doing Wendigo stuff for a while.

        There was a movie called “Wendigo (2001)” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0275067/
        A short documentary called “Searching for the Wendigo (2002)”
        “Fear Itself (TV Series) (1 episode) – Skin and Bones (2008)”

        • Huh. And a 2006 film called “The Last Winter,” also apparently about Wendigo. With Ron Perlman!

          Wow, All his directorial work from 2001’s “Wendigo” up through that 2008 episode of “Fear Itself” involved Wendigos. I guess his producer credit on this game should have been tagged for spoilers. Are we sure Larry Fessenden didn’t actually spend a few years around the turn of the millenium up on a mountain fighting Wendigo?

          Double checking…

          Oh god. There’s no listed work between 1995 and 1999.

          THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE

        • lurkey says:

          Imma plug here one of my mostest favouritest films of all times ever, Ravenous. Which, coincidentally, is a Wendigo story too!

  9. Mike Munroe says:

    Regarding the Butterfly Effect, if Emily had gotten the flare gun instead of Matt, she could have used it to fend off the Wendigo and avoid being bitten, so the scene in the basement wouldn’t have happened.

  10. MichaelGC says:

    We call it ‘the bog.’

  11. Mike Munroe says:

    “Reginald Cuftbert doesn’t tend to die like that.”

    Say what?

  12. Henson says:

    *Knock knock knock knock knock*

    Mike: “Who the fuck can that be?”

    Stranger: “Duh da duh duhn duhn Dah! I…Am! your singing Telegram-”

    *BANG*

  13. Mike Munroe says:

    I just discovered that if you, as Chris, don’t trigger the clown/scarecrow prank jumpscare the first time you walk down the path to the shed, you can totally do it the second time when you’re walking with the stranger. I just think it’s hilarious that the threat is escalating, Chris has already been through almost unimaginable trauma, and then he gets spooked by a remnant of Josh’s scheme that was supposed to go off earlier.

    Also, props to the developers, Chris doesn’t say “Who would do this?” the second time around, because he already knows who did it.

  14. Christopher says:

    So considering Josh, Chris and Reginald Cuftbert is in this game already, I think it’s only fair that Mumbles plays all the wendigos while Shamus plays the shamans. I’m not sure about Rutskarn.

    On a different note, I like the animation on the wendigos. They aren’t all that scary on their own, they basically just look like Gollum. But they’re a bit bigger, and they move like a spider, and they’re calm and still until they just LUNGE at blinding speeds. There’s not a lot of.. inbetweening, is that correct? It reminds me of Killer Instinct characters, who move rapidly from one pose to the next.

    On a different, different note, this is what turned Emily into one of my favorites. I don’t think she’s “always” right. In the beginning, she picks fights all the time and argues with Matt over the smallest decisions. But she gets a prolonged exploration/action sequence to be a video game protagonist in, gets unfairly accused of being a wendigo, and then slaps the accuser to the floor. She’s fun. On the opposite end, Ashley’s image gets worse because she made a dumbass accusation with no proof and almost got Emily killed. Mike doesn’t exactly come shining out of that situation either, but he got to go “I can’t do it” and leave heroically to get the keys they need to escape instead.

    • Mike Munroe says:

      There’s also the matter of Ashley locking Chris out the lodge if he pointed the gun at her. Considering that she can go straight from that to accusing Emily, this whole sequence has the potential to make her very contemptible indeed.

      • Flavius says:

        Without being too much of an apologist for Ashley, I think it is important to consider her probable psychological state, compared to the other protagonists. Out of the six, she has been in the most situations where she was the victim, without agency, contemplating a gruesome death. I think her reasoning ability at this stage is extremely frayed, I do not think it is stretching too much that her reaction is a rejection of being made the victim yet again. I think the horror and shame that she can express at what she almost caused supports this interpretation somewhat; that she is a decent enough person who has begun to make poor decisions under a tremendous amount of torment and stress.

        Anyways, sorry for the armchair psychology.

        • Thomas says:

          This whole conversation is why Until Dawn is pretty good

        • Poncho says:

          Which kind of makes you wonder why she is in charge of lookout at the door at all.

          The game does a fairly decent job of portraying some realistic scenarios, and for the most part any bothersome instances can be explained through context, but Ashley doesn’t get to be on the fringe of crazy *and* the one person on lookout. Mike still had a gun, right? So in real life we’d probably have him at the door in case something needed to be shot.

          Games with many branching decision trees are difficult to structure, so I get why something like this happens, but it’s still not as satisfying as possible.

          • Mike Munroe says:

            Though consider; Mike, who has by this point made himself the de-facto leader of the group, wasn’t there to see the trauma that Ashley went through. The only people who would be able to have seen the beginnings of Ashley’s breakdown would be Chris and Josh, both of whom were outside at the time. As far as Mike was concerned, she and Chris had experienced the same events, and so would probably be exhibiting similar levels of trauma. Chris seemed fine, so Ashley must be alright too.

            Also, the ending where Chris dies reveals that Mike himself wasn’t that far away from the door himself. Though notably, he isn’t close enough to see if Ashley lets Chris in or not, so I dunno.

          • Shoeboxjeddy says:

            She basically volunteers to do it and Mike (/everyone else) allows it because nobody WANTS to stay nearest the Wendigos, so if she wants to, why not let her. The scene where Sam and Mike come upon the tied up Chris and Ash is deliberately done so that they NEVER see the resolution of Josh’s test. Josh DOES mention it during the “taking Josh to the cabin” scene, but Mike might not even know what he’s getting at, or just assume he’s crazy, or not assume Ashley would lose it over that since it was a trick to begin with.

            If the player hasn’t made an unforced error leading up to this, the door scene is basically the culmination of the romance arc between those two, which is funny. It’s either the best scene for their relationship, or the absolute end of it.

        • Steve C says:

          Earlier Ashley and Chris thought they were going to die in Josh’s sawblade chair. Maybe Ashley had been thinking since then, “I really hope Chris dies instead of me. I don’t know what the hell I was thinking earlier.”
          ;-)

      • Jokerman says:

        There are also choices you can make while exploring with Chris (with the ghosts and spooky shit) that make her look pretty bad, i could see why some people really hate Ashley, and some wonder why people really hate Ashley, because based on choices she can either look pretty evil or an angel (the stuff with Emily is avoidable, if she is dead or using the flare, avoids the bite.)

    • Echo Tango says:

      The stay-still-then-lunge thing is pretty common amoung many insects and spiders, too. Definitely good animations, no matter how you look at it, though, especially considering how easy it would have been to just have a wolf-ish looking were-human thing, that just lumbers around in an almost-human way.

      • Landralin says:

        Yeah, those animations contributed a great deal to how freaky the Wendigos were for me. It made them always feel “off” and unnatural, which goes well with the fact that they… well, are unnatural.

    • “I’m not sure about Rutskarn.”

      That’s easy. “Sam: A wittle baby Wolverine” *laughs*

  15. Cinebeast says:

    I was pretty disappointed the Stranger died so quickly. It fits the formula, but I’m not much of a fan of formulas. Besides, they could have played it a little looser, like Shamus suggested. Gives a few more scenes with the guy, or instead of outright killing him off, just injure him or let one of the wendigos incapacitate him and drag him off to a dungeon.

    • Tizzy says:

      He did go down like a punk, didn’t he? Disappointing indeed.

    • el_b says:

      it would have been cool if he was part of the ‘everyone lives or dies’ thing. that way it could be a choice or legit screwup by the player that kills him rather than just the plot. he wouldnt have to stay with the other cast members or anything, but he could get dragged off or chase something and only show up at the end…with his wolf buddy if you choose wisely.

  16. Spirit Bear says:

    And So Emily is safe and done storywise. They can’t get then everypne dies ending.

  17. Zak McKracken says:

    I thought that after all this exposition (which could be seen coming for a while now), and revealing the actual threats and all the story might become a bit less interesting, after all there’s a lot less mystery now. But I’m actually quite on the edge of my seat right now. Need to know how this goes on.

    I have a very unsettling idea about what happened to Hannah …

  18. Zak McKracken says:

    …aahnd this is where Ash starts to become a lot less likeable. Still not a fan of Em, though. And Mike is still all muscle, no brain.
    Also, the game designer did a little bit of cutscene railroadery there, what with not having an option to say anything against the Vampire/Zombie bite hypothesis.

    Also, did they leave both the book and the gun on the table when they left the room at the end of the last scene? Very very not smart!

    • Tizzy says:

      The gun, being not-a-shotgun, is canonically ineffective against wendigos because… …reasons? Also, I guess they know they’re never going to need to shoot a lock ever again.

    • They probably did not think of the gun, or rather Sam probably did not want to take it either.

      “cutscene railroadery” yeah that is probably one of the largest flaws of the game. It’s not really a interactive movie, nor is it a game; It’s in a uncanny valley of interaction.

      • Zak McKracken says:

        I’d say it’s still better than many a story-focused game, and of course the designer has to deal with the fact that the game can only handle very finite numbers of choices while RL has infinitely many … but yeah, they could have found better solutions for that problem in many places.

        But then again, it’s easy to criticise, and actually this is still extremely coherent by video game standards. You’d probably need a few Rutskarns, Joshes and Shamuses to play through the game several times, have them list all of the grievances, then spend another 6 months rearranging the entire story to reduce them, then repeat to make sure the plot holes you introduced aren’t bigger than the ones you closed, and then the part of the audience which routinely notices such things (as opposed to just being sucked into the story and not paying that sort of attention) will find it more agreeable…

        to wit: I played through Fahrenheit and up until the zombie sex scene found it really great. After that scene … a bit weird but still a really good game. Because I played it through in long 3-4 hour sittings, no time to analyse and think. Then later when Shamus mentioned a few things, I realized … Almost every game can work well on an unsuspecting audience.

  19. Zak McKracken says:

    The door: The Stranger does shut the door. You don’t see it but you hear it. He shuts it while the camera is on someone else, before moving on.

    That said: I’m not sure why the wendigos care about doors anyway because most of those are rather flimsy. I bet they’re just holding back for the time being so that there’s room to increase tension when it turns out they can just smash through doors and windows, and you might as well just leave the door open.

    • Scimitar says:

      It’s (I think) because the wendigos are blind. Notice how people light up in the “wendigo vision” sequences? It’s not for show, they detect motion but are otherwise blind. So closing a door just means breaking line of sight, and then it has to figure out what just happened.

      • Zak McKracken says:

        Makes sense

        Although the “can only see movement” thing is stupid anyway. I mean, how do they avoid blundering into walls or falling down cliffs? Simple, actually: You move your head, so the image on your retina moves. But then why does a human have to move relative to the scenery to me noticed?

        It’s all a blur … :)

  20. Tizzy says:

    It’s obvious he needed to die. Nothing kills the tension like having a hyper-competent badass looking out for you, and nothing raises the stakes like the bad guys taking out your strongest ally.

    Obligatory TV tropes link:

    The World’s Expert On Getting Killed

  21. @Shamus maybe try to get a hold of Larry Fessenden (the main guy behind Until Dawn/and Wendigo stuff) and invite him on the Diecast?
    He’s a indie guy so he might just answer/agree if he’s got the time.

  22. Somniorum says:

    Well this is rather bugging me. Watching this, I was all like “that’s really not meeting up with wendigo folklore” as, when younger, I tended to read books about folk creatures and the like a fair bit.

    And then to confirm this, I checked wikipedia and found out everything I had heard in the past is 100 % incorrect.

    In the past, I’d read about it being an invisible spirit that would possess people and make them run until they burst into flames. Where the hell did whoever I read come up with that??

    Some otherkin I used to know told me the plural was “wendigoak”… apparently they were *fairly* close, though wikipedia suggests “windigoag”, “windegoag”, “wiindigooag”, or “windikouk”.

    So next time you hear someone refer to “windigos”, you can correct them on the proper plural like a proper pretentious person : P

    • Syal says:

      In the past, I’d read about it being an invisible spirit that would possess people and make them run until they burst into flames. Where the hell did whoever I read come up with that??

      That’s… exactly what the game just said? They’re evil spirits who possess cannibals, who then run fast until someone lights them on fire.

      • Somniorum says:

        No, no – the game just has agile ghouls who are basically immune to anything except fire.

        The stories I had read suggested that it takes over people (I don’t recall mention of taking over cannibals, but I might be mistaken), and will force the person to run so fast that they burst into flame.

        I mean, there are a *few* similarities – vulnerability to fire, I suppose (in a round-about way – it wasn’t simply that they could only be killed by fire, it’s just that they incidentally burst into flames in what I’d read), and possession.

        If it really said anything about being forced to just run forever at super-speed in the game, I missed that part – and the wikipedia article didn’t have much of anything about them forcing people to run or the like, or, for that matter, anything related to fire that I noticed. Basically just an evil spirit that possesses cannibals and curses them to be forever starved (sometimes growing huge to ensure it starves forever).

        • vrittis says:

          Some myths are either mangled in translation, or in cultural mixes, or simply reinvented. I’m pretty sure your version (which rings a bell) can live alongside many others. Just for example there is an entity called wendigo in the Call of Cthulhu mythos (also called Ithaqua, the wind-walker), and which is shown as a giant entity visible in the sky near the polar circle

      • Jay Allman says:

        For the record, Syal: At least one person (me!) got your joke. :D

    • Ivellius says:

      I’d be willing to be it’s the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark version you remember with the Indian guide Defago: something like, “Oh, my burning feet of fire” sticks out from that story.

      Which, admittedly, doesn’t have much to do with a cannibalistic murder creature, other than both are potentially connected to wind. Mythology is fun.

    • Nessus says:

      The lore you remember from your childhood was from a famous short story called “the Wendigo” by Algernon Blackwood.

      It’s a good short story, and has since been adopted by Cthulhu mythos fans as part of said mythos. The “Ithaqua” entity Vrittis mentions is the CoC roleplaying game version of the Blackwood/Cthulhu mythos wendigo.

      A sort of cliff notes version of the story was published in one of the “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” children’s anthologies in the 80″s and 90’s. These anthologies were both popular and infamous at the time for the AMAZINGLY creepy watercolor illustrations by a guy named Stephen Gammell (seriously: google that shit, it’s fantastic).

      …But as you note, it’s totally accurate to the “real” wendigo myth.

  23. Pyrrhic Gades says:

    OK, I’m calling it now. The when-dingo is Josh’s sister. Also the cannibal part is a myth, everyone in Josh Cuftbert’s family is just crazy.

  24. Landralin says:

    In reply to Shamus’ comment on the Stranger telling Chris about the Wendigo’s eating habits, I interpreted that as him trying to scare Chris to get him to fall in line, not actually telling him what they do. As Shamus said, the Wendigo clearly didn’t do that to him right there.

    Also, I liked how the Stranger died. Like Ruts said, it’s pretty tragic for him to die out in the open like that considering how long he’s been trapping the Wendigos, and there’s a decent explanation. He’s used to working alone, and using traps and trickery to his advantage. He is certainly not used to protecting a teenager who’s never even seen a Wendigo before, and he gets caught out in the open.

    • Shoeboxjeddy says:

      The Wendigo here just killed quickly, possible it was familiar with the threat the Stranger represented. Meanwhile, the Wendigo with Jess dragged her off without killing her immediately, showing there’s some credence to the “it will hurt you and make you suffer before it kills you” idea the Stranger was saying.

      Josh was also dragged off like Jess, there seems to be a “move live food to the nest, eat there” function to their normal eating habits, which changes when they sense a threat.

  25. Steve C says:

    I have a question… who cut the wires of the tower that caused it to collapse? Of the three ominous and now known threats (Josh, Windigo, Stranger) the only one that makes any sense is the Stranger. Except he has no reason to do that. Is there a fourth threat?

    I love that everyone everyone has forgotten about Matt. The kids, the SW crew (until later), everyone. The kids remember Josh and want to help him. He punched half of them in the face and was a giant dick. But Matt… who’s that?

    • Benjamin Hilton says:

      If you freeze frame that moment you can see that it was a claw that sliced the cable.

      • Jokerman says:

        Seems…. to smart for a wendigo doesn’t it? But yeah… even watching it again at full speed you can see it’s a wendigo arm.

        • Benjamin Hilton says:

          Yeah I think the intelligence level of the wendigos is an interesting debate. On the one hand it’s easy to say they just act like animals. On the other hand the Stranger states that they may retain some knowledge of their former lives. On the gripping hand now that we know what the menace is we realize that a wendigo threw Jessica’s phone into the cabin to…..scare her? lure her out? Something?

      • Shoeboxjeddy says:

        Which also makes no sense, because they show the axe being picked up. Did a Wendigo pick up the axe and carry it around… then use its claws to cut the wires? Also, a Wendigo tries to get through the trapdoor but can’t… why can’t it? They’re super strong. And when the trap door didn’t work, why didn’t it simply scale the side, as they scale things the rest of the game?

        In retrospect, the tower scene makes the least sense in the game, imo.

  26. Alex says:

    “The Wendigo, he keeps you alive and aware and feasts on your organs one at a time.”

    There is at least one (horrifying) real creature that does this. The Emerald Cockroach Wasp is the stuff of nightmares, if you are a cockroach.

  27. Galad says:

    A bit of a meta comment, but people like me, who have not, and will not play this game, since it’s not on PC, how should we read, or not read the spoilered stuff? I guess I’m going to go through the episodes comments again once the season finishes but that’s not the most convenient thing to do.

  28. Benjamin Hilton says:

    I know the title of this episode refers to the Stranger, but given the revealed nature of the monsters I’m kinda disappointed the title wasn’t “Jimmy Eat Girl.”

  29. Neko says:

    I don’t know how the line goes in the other version of events, but when the girls are going over the book and realise that yes, Wendigo bites are harmless, I got pulled out of it a bit. Because their “Oh God…” reaction feels like it’s the line for “oh god, we just shot and killed our friend for no reason” rather than “oh whoops lol guess it’s a good thing we didn’t shoot Emily”. I felt like they were reusing the dialog from the alternative timeline.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      They still almost killed her and wanted to toss her out.So they had cause to have that very concerned tone.

    • Shoeboxjeddy says:

      Ashley’s “Oh GOD” in the ‘didn’t shoot Emily’ timeline is justified considering she just earnestly argued for the murder of a supposed friend. I’ve never seen the “refused to tell Emily the truth” choice in my playthroughs though, because it just is insane petty.

  30. Phantos says:

    I think it would have had more of an impact if Jimmy Flamethrowers had been in the story long enough for us to even learn his name.

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