Is Lydia a Psychopomp?
During night terror bouts, patients are usually described as ‘bolting upright’ with their eyes wide open and a look of fear and panic on their face. They will often scream. In some cases, individuals are likely to have even more elaborate motor activity, such as a thrashing of limbs.
However despite Lydia’s condition being able to be described scientifically. Within the show it is more than likely that it has a supernatural origin. Okay definitely. So what is she?
She’s a Psychopomp! A guider of souls.
I know right? Best word ever!
“I have no clue how I ended up finding that body!”
In the trailer when Lydia says the line above she is wearing the same clothes as she was at the end of 3×02 ‘Chaos Rising’, when she woke up screaming, meaning that 3×03 ‘Fireflies’ picks up around where the last episode left off.
Did Lydia have a dream of a dead body and go and investigate to see if her dream was real or does she find the body in some kind of fugue state and then come back to herself all like da faq? If I was to pick one of the two I’d pick the latter. I think Lydia is experiencing black outs again.
Now the interesting thing about fugue states – is that the person while in the fugue state can sometimes take on a completely different identify and personality. So it will be really interesting to see if in the future anyone comes across Lydia while she is experiencing one to see who she thinks she is (the dead person the dead person) because while in reality it’s a serious psychological disorder. I think in Teen Wolf it could mean she is being possessed or controlled or something; like with Peter.
In 2×07 ‘Restraint’ Peter said to Lydia:
“At least you know that you’re not actually crazy. Well not completely there’s bound to be some residual effects, but you’re a strong girl, personally I think your going to pull through with a minimal amount of post traumatic stress and maybe a few years of profoundly disturbing nightmares.”
Interestingly post traumatic stress is one of the factors related to the occurrence of night terrors but going for the supernatural explanation. Was Peter hinting at something when he said she’d experience profoundly disturbing nightmares? Because that seems to be what is happening now.
In the classical period, people believed that dreams were direct messages from the gods, or from the dead, and also that they predicted the future. Peter communicated with Lydia in various ways including in her dreams and he was dead.
It has not been made clear, either way, whether communicating with the dead is an innate ability that Lydia always had (possibly connected to her immunity and possibly dormant) or whether Peter biting her and then using her to resurrect himself caused it.
Regardless if she retains this ability to commune or more specifically for the dead to commune with her, in some capacity, then she is essentially a bit like a psychic medium or a channeler.
However Jeff Davis said in the Season 2 commentary that Lydia’s scream in 2×01 ‘Omega’ from the shower was used throughout the season.
Watch it again see how many times you can here it! And, more importantly, that it is a huge clue and important for Season 3. I believe that it’s this information, along with all the Lydia screaming motifs so far this season, that lead to the speculation that she is a Banshee.
A Banshee is a female spirit in Irish mythology, usually seen as an omen of death and a messenger from The Otherworld. Traditionally their wailing, keening, screaming is a predictor that someone is about to die. This idea of an omen of death exists across cultures and under different names.
One of these is The Morrígan and though there is some debate still; the entomological root of the word is linked with nightmare and terror. The Morrígan is usually interpreted as a war goddess and her role often involves premonitions of a particular warrior’s violent death. Which links in with the later folklore of the Banshee and she sometimes appears in the guise of one. Her role was to not only be a symbol of imminent death but also to influence the outcome of the war and she would often take the form of a raven flying overhead.
This is interesting because in 3×01 ‘Tattoo’ Lydia starting talking about the saying bad things come in threes and right then a unkindness of ravens smashed through the window and I question whether this could be a symbolic clue as The Morrígan is often considered a triple goddess in Celtic mythology.
Whether you think Lydia is a Banshee, The Morrígan, a bean-nighe, bean sith , siren or some other variation. There is perhaps a word that may better describe her.
Psychopomp literally means the “guide of souls” and are any creatures, spirits, deities, shamans etc across cultures and traditions whose responsibility is to escort newly deceased souls to the afterlife. Their role is not to judge the deceased, but simply provide safe passage. One of the animals that psychopomps have been associated with is the raven. The psychopomp is like a mediator between the unconscious and conscious realms. This may include not only accompanying the soul of the dead, but also vice versa: to help at birth, to introduce the newborn child’s soul to the world.
This would certainly fit with how Lydia brought Peter back to life. He was not exactly a newborn child but still it was a rebirth of sorts. So she can guide souls…whether it be to ‘realm of the dead’ or from it. It raises questions about Jackson too how did he come back to life? Could it be linked to Lydia?
See here for info and a list of Psychopomps which includes The Morrígan.