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Everything Salad Fingers
Your extensive guide to our strange green friend.
Have you ever watched the Salad Fingers series and just wanted more information? I know exactly what that's like, which is why I decided to start this lens. I'm aiming to provide the most information, insight, and up to date news about the Salad Fingers world as possible. Or, if you have no idea what I'm talking about, then this lens will also be useful in getting you started.
Introducing Salad Fingers!
A short introduction.
The best place to start out is probably with the basics. What we do know for a fact is that Salad Fingers is a male. His skin color is pretty close to dollar bill green, and he doesn't have ears or a nose. There are only three fingers on each of his hands, but these aren't typical human fingers. They are elongated and none of them are thumbs. He lives alone in what may have been an apartment building in the past, judging by the number 22 being displayed on the front door. The world Salad Fingers lives in appears to be post-apocalyptic, due to the ground being covered in sand instead of grass, and the very small amount of living beings he comes in contact with. Out of everyone he meets, only two appear to be normal human beings, and only one of which speaks English. Which brings up another important point; Salad Fingers speaks with a British accent. Enough talk for now, let's watch the first video in the series, then we can discuss more.
Where to view every episode!
- The Salad Fingers Series
Every video posted by the creator himself, so you know they are authentic, and you also don't have the hassle of having to sign in to a youtube account.
About David Firth
Knowing the creator of a series can be a big help in understanding the series itself. David Firth was born on January 23, 1983, which currently makes him 28 years old. For some reason, I expected him to be older. He was born in England, which explains why the majority of the characters in his animations have that accent, and is involved in many outlets including animation, music videos, and he even has multiple bands. The ones I know for a fact he's in are called Locust Toybox, and Grape Digging Sharon Fruits, but there's a good chance he has a few more. His works usually implement dark humor, also known as black comedy. He doesn't shy away from topics such as depression, insanity, or other such potentially disturbing things.
Episode 1- This episode is pretty short, so I'd guess that Firth hadn't planned on making this a long running series initially. It's focus is on Salad Fingers' love of touching rusty objects, especially spoons. While this is probably the most shallow aspect of the character, it has also become the most well known. It starts with Salad Fingers (hereafter referred to as SF to save space) standing in the middle of an empty field of sand, save 1 or 2 dead trees in the background. SF decides he must go on a quest to find the perfect spoon and ends up at a shack similar to the one we come to find is his own in later episodes. After the doorbell is rung, a small, yellow skinned humanoid with no arms appears at the door and lets him in.
This creature definitely is not hostile, but it doesn't speak English or any other human language, so it's hard to tell what it is thinking. Instead it speaks in yawn-like noises. As SF is walking through the house, I noticed two interesting things. The first is that there's some sort of green gas flowing near the ceiling. No mention is made of it, and neither character seems to be affected by it. The second is that there's a painting or picture of a human man hanging on the wall, and his mouth moves twice in the scene. This person doesn't resemble the yellow creature, so it may have been someone who lived there at one point, or possibly someone the humanoid knows. The man is standing on two grassy hills though, which suggests the picture was taken at a much earlier date than the events of the series. Failing to communicate with the humanoid, SF decides to caress a kettle then leave, ending the episode.
Episode 2- This is where things quickly become creepy and bizarre. The entire episode takes place inside SF's house, and begins with him introducing us to his friends; 3 finger puppets named Hubert Cumberdale, Jeremy Fisher, and Marjory Stewart-Baxter. SF decides to taste 2 of them, commenting that Marjory tastes like sunshine dust and Cumberdale tastes like soot and poo. He then goes to the oven to take a fish out, but calls out for help because he can't reach. 1 of the only 2 seemingly normal humans in the entire series comes to his rescue. This character is a young boy wearing a pink jacket with the letter M on the front. He never speaks, but it's clear that he understands English because he goes right to the oven when SF explains the situation to him. SF becomes very emotional over the boy's willingness to help, but is distracted by a hook protruding from the wall and accidentally closes him inside the oven.
As he's rubbing the hook, his finger is impaled, causing him to pass out. He has a dream that he's walking through some sort of meat freezer, singing Somewhere Over the Rainbow, which may allude to his previous employment, but for reasons I'll discuss later, I don't think this is the case. During his walk, he encounters a life sized apparition of Cumberdale, who shrieks at him. SF simply taps him on the head with a spoon and continues walking, until he sees a bloody hook that snaps him back into reality. Smoke is billowing in the air and the episode ends with SF saying "That fish smells about done". The poor boy clearly died in the oven, but we never learn what SF does with the body. This episode reveals several fascinating new levels to SF's character.
The most obvious, and important, is that he is insane. He truly believes his finger puppets to be living beings, and throughout the rest of the series, he does the same thing with many other inanimate objects. A more in depth look can be given about this after later episodes, so I'll hold off for now. The next interesting thing to notice is that he speaks at least one other language, French I believe, fluently. So far, we still haven't learned why or how he can do this. Hopefully future episodes will explore his past. The last thing worth mentioning about this episode is that SF seems to enjoy pain, at least to a small extent. When he cuts himself, he says "I like it when the red water comes out". At first, this just creeped me out, but after seeing every episode I realized there are a couple more instances that SF is hurt and seems to enjoy it. This may not add anything to the big picture, but it is a strange trait that we should keep our eyes on.
Episode 3- Although short, this one's probably one of the weirdest. SF is picking nettles among several dead trees. For those of you who don't know much about botany, like me, a nettle is a plant that's covered in small prickly hairs. It's indicated that he's been rubbing them for pleasure by the red bumps that cover his fingers. He happens upon a baby stroller, and claiming not to know what it is, decides it would be best put to use transporting nettles back to his shack. As he walks off screen, a strange man with no arms and different sized eyes makes some angry grunts and begins pursuing SF. The man only speaks in grunts, and wears a brown shirt and a green apron that says BBQ on the front. He's also wearing a name tag, which says Harry, and has 3 stars. It's unclear what the man is upset about, but my best guess is that SF just stole his stroller. The man chases him to his house, and proceeds to kill himself by banging his head on the front door in an attempt to break it down.
In the meantime, we see another instance of SF hurting himself for pleasure by rubbing nettles on his nipple. For whatever reason, this makes him think of a time when he was getting a perm with a life-size Cumberdale, and considering he doesn't have hair and Cumberdale is just a puppet, this flashback is likely a false memory. SF finally hears Harry knocking, but by the time he goes outside to see who it is, Harry has already died. We see another example of SF blatantly ignoring reality when he chooses to call the man Milford Cubicle instead of his obviously displayed actual name. Come to think of it, he continues ignoring reality when he pretends the man is still alive and drags him inside. Since the man can't hold himself up, SF hangs him on a hook and starts talking to him. We learn a new baffling aspect of SF when he bursts out playing a flute with some skill. It closes out with SF offering Harry a glass of warm milk. Judging from the lack of cows in this world, and the fact that he said warm milk instead of cold, I think it's safe to assume SF was offering him milk from his teat. Like in the last episode, we never learn what becomes of this dead body.
Episode 4- We get another small glimpse of SF's relation to France at the start of this one, when he's wearing a beret and declares he's going to find France because he's always wanted to go there. He quickly abandons this quest, stating that a small boy has been following him for some time. We see a new living being here with some odd features. His head is bulbous and has a large stitch going almost completely across the front above his eye. Speaking of eyes, his are totally black and round. Unlike many of the characters, he does have arms, and his skin color is normal. The interactions between these 2 are puzzling.
The boy is in love with SF, and even manages to capture him using a tap on a string and a bear trap. He then proposes to a caged SF with a ring with a tooth in place of a stone. In response to all of the boy's displays of affection, SF becomes very startled and put off. SF seems to be seeking companionship out of everyone else he encounters, so why is it different this time? The obvious answer would be that he is afraid of the homosexual aspect of it, but I think it may be an even deeper fear of intimate contact in general. Even though clearly disturbed by the boy's advances, SF is never rude to him, and when he can't take it anymore, he simply disappears from the cage. We see him flying away riding a tap in the next scene, but who really knows how he escaped.
Even though the boy injured SF with the bear trap, he becomes very sad and cries when SF abandons him, implying that he never meant SF any harm. After the initial shock of the bear trap closing on his leg, we see a new case of him enjoying pain as he moans in pleasure before fainting. There's also a short scene involving a roly-poly that SF calls his little sister. After the insect crawls out of a hole, he talks to it for only a short time before the temptation of touching it becomes too much. In his excitement, he accidentally crushes it, but instead of owning up to this, he tells the insect that it is all slimy and needs to bathe before he will play with it. This is another instance we see him ignoring reality, probably as a defense mechanism.
Episode Analysis Cont'd
Episode 5- There are several things to note about this one. In the beginning, we see SF talking to a phone that's clearly disconnected, yet it makes noises anyway. They must have just been in his head. After he makes the phone call, he takes out Cumberdale to give him a new captain's hat, only he calls him by the name Barbara Logan-Price. Next, he appears in his room wearing a wedding dress and veil, commenting that this is his big day and crying. Seeing as wedding dresses aren't things you just have laying around, we can assume a woman who planned on marrying lived there at one point. In the next scene, SF has a tablecloth spread out on the ground outside, and he's accompanied by a female child he refers to as Mable.
Mable is the only character so far other than SF that speaks English, although he never talks back to her because of what happens. At first, things are going quite well, until a crow lands on a stump nearby. It's worth mentioning that this is the only living animal we see in the series other than 2 insects, which is another big indicator that the series is post-apocalyptic. The crow seems to be evil and can speak, only the words come out backwards so I'm not sure what it's saying. We also see an instance of Marjory moving on her own as she appears in the window, clearly jealous of the attention Mable is receiving from SF. When SF takes out a spoon to feed Mable, the crow flies by and steals the spoon, sending SF into shock. He has a nightmarish vision of Mable wondering if he doesn't like her mouth-words as he huddles in a corner inside his house. We can't know exactly what happens between the 2 scenes, but Mable is never shown on another episode.
Episode 6- I find this to be the most confusing episode, with the events shown in the chronologically incorrect order. SF orders Cumberdale to come down from on top of a dresser, but instead of simply coming down, the puppet turns into a black substance similar to hot tar and seeps down the side. SF turns to start playing with Fisher, and we hear the first mention of the Great War. He speaks for Fisher, but the words are distorted, so I'm not sure if any real words were actually spoken. SF pretends Fisher is giving him a toy horse as a gift, and the scene that follows starts the jumbling of the timeline.
As far as I can tell, the real sequence of events is as follows: SF accuses Fisher, SF remembers that he never tasted Fisher in episode 2 and has the terrifying daydream of eating the head of an identical twin of himself, and finally goes on a walk outside with his new toy and discovers the toilet. The dialogue he speaks while looking into the toilet is the counterpart of the accusations he made earlier. This episode is perhaps the greatest testimony to his insanity. He lives in a world almost entirely made up from his own mind. He can't distinguish between reality and his own imagination, to the point of seeing things that are not there and interacting with them. He seems to have multiple personalities that he projects onto each of his puppets instead of acting them out himself. If I'm correct about the order of events, the true ending of the episode is him flushing his bad thoughts away and instructing the horse to take him home.
Episode 7- Here we see a continuation of SF projecting personalities onto his puppets. He's dug several small holes in his yard, but he believes Cumberdale has been digging on his own. This proves that SF often acts out the parts of his other personalities, then returns to his own and interacts with the others. In the hole Cumberdale has supposedly dug, SF discovers the torso of a deceased man, and claims it to be his younger brother Kenneth, returning from the Great War. This is an example of him being so lonely that he has to pretend dead people or inanimate objects are his friends and relatives. SF says to Kenneth that it was rude for everyone to leave him behind when they went off to war. He then continues his delusion by dragging the torso into his house and dressing it in a suit top.
There are 2 instances when Kenneth falls over, and instead of recognizing him as a dead body, SF plays these off like human actions, and uses a wooden dent rail to hold him up at the dinner table. He offers Kenneth sand to eat, and several green lumps remain on a plate in the center of the table. It's odd that SF refers to sand as floor sugar earlier in the episode, but calls it by its actual name here. At the end of the day, SF eventually comes to realize that he can't keep the dead body in his house any longer, but he won't admit this out loud and says he's sending Kenneth back to the ghastly trenches, which is a reference to war. He sings We'll Meet Again while crying, and kicks Kenneth back into the hole he was discovered in. This gives him another flashback of singing at a function, like he mentioned at dinner. If you look closely at the pianist, you'll notice strings attached to his hands, indicating he's a marionette, and the whole flashback is another false memory.
Episode 8- SF discusses his radio named Roger who makes noises and even talks, despite all of his wires being cut. This points to the fact that Roger is another one of SF's personalities. What sets Roger apart is that he's the only one with malicious intent. He chastises SF for having a dirty house, and continues yelling until SF runs away. We discover that SF has a safety cupboard inside his house that he goes to when under extreme emotional distress. He discovers a hair while in this cupboard and drags it across his eye. After doing that, he puts it along a collection of 4 other hairs he's gathered over time. SF plays with his fingers in the cupboard to entertain himself, pretending one hand to be a person going to the market. Oddly, he refuses to sell the hand anything and ends his game on a bad note.
In another scene, SF lays on his bed with Cumberdale, but becomes bored and flicks the puppet off. After he lands in a full bedpan, SF becomes very cross with Cumberdale, and tells him to wash off because he "won't have any dirty immigrants in this house". This is a strange thing for him to say, because Jeremy Fisher was colored, but he never seemed to be intolerant towards him. SF is shown crying in his cupboard twice, and the episode ends rather gloomily after Roger forces him to eat his prized collection of hairs. Other interesting things to note are that SF claims he listens to the War on the radio, and he says he has to feed Roger or else he gets cranky, then pours round objects into a hole in the back of the radio.
Episode 9- After I finished this episode, I literally said "everything I thought I knew about Salad Fingers was shattered!", which is a bit of an exaggeration, but there were definitely more questions raised than answered. It starts out with SF seemingly reading a newspaper clip, but after looking closely I realized he's holding the paper upside down, and on top of that, there aren't any real words on the page, just a mass of randomly grouped letters. A branch comes into his house and as he takes a bite off it, a voice outside cries in pain. SF goes outside to Mr. Branches, who now has a face and thinks SF is his father. The conversation they have is very disturbing, but what I find notable is that SF never denies that he's the father of this tree. He eventually tries to walk away, but it reaches out and crushes his stomach. With that, he seems to wake up, making the first 2 scenes a dream.
SF is sitting on a bed in a pile of black goo and is extremely pale. He thinks he's gravely ill and decides to tap out a distress signal on the furnace beside him, even though it clearly doesn't lead to anyone who could help. He makes the first mention of his mother thus far, saying that she always thought he was going to die from the scarlet fever. After a bit of research I discovered that scarlet fever is mostly found in children, so it seems his mother believed he wouldn't live past childhood. Shortly after this, a mass of black goo identical to what's on the sheets erupts from his stomach, and he passes out. When he wakes, he believes the black mass is a child that he somehow gave birth to. He names her baby Yvonne, and says she has her mother's eyes when obviously the thing has no distinguishable features. After putting Yvonne in a pit to exercise, SF pretends to be writing a letter on a strand of toilet paper explaining why he won't be fighting in the war, but he's really only scribbling. It startled me to discover that he could pull back the skin from his fingers to reveal a brown, hard surface underneath. When he returns to Yvonne and finds she still isn't stretching, he takes out Marjory and tells her they've been given a duff one, which shows he seems to think Marjory is the mother. In the next scene he pumps air into his chest, and still looks to be in pretty bad shape. Whether he believes he's too sick to take care of her, or just doesn't want her because he believes her to be disabled, he decides to travel in his wheelchair to find someone else to take custody.
Things take a curious turn when he finds the character from the first episode, but refers to it as Aunty Bainbridge. It still doesn't seem to recognize SF and refuses to hug him, but instead of acknowledging this SF continues to recall stories from their supposed past. By the time he's finished, he forgets what he's come to do, and even forgets what he thinks the black mass is. He instead believes he's come to wash the windows with the black mass, and after doing so rolls away in his chair while eating a sub sandwich, logically leaving us to believe that was the true identification of Yvonne all along, only wrapped in ink covered newspapers.
What's Your Favorite Episode? - Vote now!
What was your favorite episode of Salad Fingers?
The Style of the Salad Fingers World
A look at the music and imagery of Salad Fingers
The Music- Each episode is different, but except for the first one, they all feature music that creates a dark and foreboding mood. Firth uses music from Marcus Fjellstrom, Brain Eno, Dyzvor, Sigur Ros, Boards of Canada, Aphex Twin, Lustmord,Chris Gladwin, and even his own recordings to do this.
The Imagery- Similar to the music, Firth decided to generally stick with dark imagery to make up this world. The clothes of every character other than SF are covered in different stains, and some like Mable even have spots of blood on them. Likewise, the buildings are spattered with stains, cracks, rust, and holes. The whole series seems to build up a sense of degradation. As in episode 1, there can often be seen a green gas cloud floating around the ceiling of SF's house. The only living plant life we see are a few nettles, but every tree found is dead and worn out. SF's teeth are filthy and obviously in need of some dental work. The sky is always a darker and blander shade of blue, other than when SF is daydreaming. When characters other than SF speak, black and red lines often jut out of their mouths. Blood is often seen in the episodes, even in pools on more than one occasion. The words spoken by SF are nearly always displayed in a jittery font made to look like handwriting on the screen. Some people think this gives the series a comic book feel, Firth has stated that was never his intention. As discussed in the episode analysis, most of the characters in the series don't even appear to be human, and have grotesque or misshapen body parts.
An Example Of The Dark Imagery
Here's a perfect example of the disturbing imagery found in this universe. This is the character Mable, who's the only other real character to talk in the series. The backgrounds are often replaced with all black or other simple designs during more intense parts.
The Big Picture
My theories on what made the world this way
There are several times when SF mentions the Great War, and despite the chance that he made that event up entirely, I still believe it to be a factual event. A nuclear war seems most likely, due to the lack of vegetation and animal life, as well as the fact that nuclear fallout could have mutated normal humans into the strange creatures we find in this world, including SF himself. So going by that logic, if there was a war, why wasn't SF a part of it? This brings us to my biggest theory, and one that may be completely off.
I believe that SF was clinically insane, from an early age, and was held in some sort of institute for a large portion of time, perhaps even until society had suffered significantly from the War and decided to shut such institutions down. Before you start tearing that theory to shreds, let's take a look at what we know. If a war was large enough in scale to affect the entire world, there would likely be a draft. SF even mentions himself that he wishes he could have fought in it, so we know that he was denied the right to join the army. Mental illness is our best bet as to why he wouldn't be accepted. We know he can see, hear, and is all around physically able to function, so none of those could factor him out. There's a chance a hereditary condition such as heart disease could be the reason, but we never see him strain to do anything, and he does some strenuous activities in different episodes, such as dragging around and lifting dead bodies.
Moving on to proving his insanity, I'm sure you hardly need me to convince you about that. I've already discussed how he has disossociative identity disorder, which basically means he has multiple distinct personalities. Watch the episodes with the finger puppets again. He clearly believes them to be real, and he often talks for them. Aside from that, he also sees them as being life sized and doing different actions on their own on different occasions. To take it one step further, Cumberdale seems to be the part of him that he blames things on, Jeremy Fisher is the able bodied and minded version of himself that actually went to the war, and Marjory is the lover he never had. After watching episode 8, I also came up with an interesting theory about Roger.
SF mentions his mother in episode 9, but nothing is ever said about his father. I think it's safe to assume his father either walked out on the family when he was very young, or he never knew his father and his mother slept with many different men for money or pleasure and never stayed connected with them. Due to his insanity, SF needed a father figure, so he simply created one in Roger. Think back to the episode; Roger was harsh and direct with SF about doing something that needed to be done. How often do our parents force us into doing something that we normally wouldn't do in order to help us become responsible? I think it's possible that SF created Roger in order to keep himself in line. While discussing cleaning the house, SF refuses, claiming that type of job is below him. Roger proceeds to force him into it by yelling at him repeatedly. The fact that Roger is so mean about it only reflects that SF never had a positive relationship with his mother and most likely never even had a father, so when creating Roger he didn't have a good influence to base him from.
I discussed how I suspect his mother didn't think he'd live past childhood, and the fact that SF knows she said this points out that she was openly negative about him. His isolation would've left him completely clueless when it comes to relationships, which is what we see every time he comes into contact with someone. He doesn't know how to handle people, especially when they show him affection, like the little boy. He also doesn't understand the basics of anatomy and human reproduction, as displayed in episode 9. He believes he gave birth to something, even though that is anatomically impossible. He also gets sexual pleasure from extremely strange things, such as rubbing his fingers across metal things, and hurting himself. Both of these things point to my theory about him being institutionalized.
SF knows many strange talents or trades, such as speaking French, playing the flute, cooking and preparing food, and possibly Morse code, and he is also very articulate and well spoken. These are all things I also believe to point at him being institutionalized. He could very easily learn all of that in some sort of class or activity held in the hospital. While he can speak rather well, it's shown in episode 9 that he can neither read or write at all, so he likely didn't have a formal education. What are your thoughts on all this? Leave a comment below!
Links Worth Visiting - Important References
If you want links to other work by Firth, music used in the videos, Firth's Twitter, and other interviews and resources, this is the place to find them!
Salad Fingers Merch
Ever wanted to see more of our green friend, outside of the computer screen? Here's your chance!