cipher wheels

Dipper wanted adventure, mystery and true friends 

And he got it :) 

Mabel wanted a boy who would love her and never leave her behind 

And she got it :)

Soos wanted to become Mr. Mystery 

And he got it :) 

Wendy wanted some excitement/action in her summer 

And she got it :) 

Pacifica wanted to not be like her family 

And she got it :)

Gideon, towards the end, wanted to become a better person 

And he got it :) 

Robbie wanted a girl who’d love him 

And he got it :) 

McGucket wanted to be good/useful to somebody 

And he got it :)

Ford wanted somebody to go on adventures with him

And he got it :)

And finally, Stan wanted to accomplish something great 

And he got it :)

And as you can all see, the Bill Cipher wheel characters had all gotten what they wanted :*)

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Bill’s finally all done after a second session for color! Was originally going to break this into two color sessions but just kinda went for it all today. My wallet AND my arm are in a lil pain. Funfact: the pink and the orange are appropriately blacklight reactive.

I love it though and it’s perfect! Thanks again Ryan!

What does Stan’s symbol mean?

First of all, thanks to @marypsue for listening to my ramblings and giving some feedback about this a few days ago and to @eregyrn-falls for talking about Alex’s Q&A, which reminded me to write it up and post it.

Warning: this is going to be long. Sorry.

One of the things that I’ve always hoped would get an explanation from Alex (but possibly never will?) is the meaning behind the symbol on Stan’s fez/the Cipher Wheel.

First, a bit of a tangent, but I hope a productive one: in GF fanfic, a common issue when Bill and Stan appear together in a fic is that we never canonically heard Bill’s nickname for Stan (assuming he would have given Stan one, which, given Bill’s character, seems like a safe bet). Fic authors usually get around this by having Bill call Stan “Fez,” which makes sense given that’s where his symbol is and it’s a pretty distinctive element of his appearance.

BUT.

But Bill doesn’t call Dipper “ballcap,” or Mabel “sweater,” or Soos “t-shirt,” even though that’s where their symbols are found. Their nicknames are based on what the symbol IS, and the symbols (at least roughly?) represent who they are as characters.

So, ultimately, thinking about what Bill’s nickname for Stan might be sort of helps clarify what Stan’s symbol might mean vis-à-vis his character. Ahem. Back to the symbol.

The clearest direct mention of the symbol is in Journal 3, when Ford writes that Stan’s fez is from Filbrick’s  membership in the “Royal Order of the Holy Mackerel.” It’s totally possible this is all there is to it, it’s a funny fish symbol. Alex’s old DeviantArt account is reportedly holymackerel, so it’s possible it’s just something he thought was funny and that’s that.

But, we all know how much Alex loves to misdirect people – almost as much as he likes to have multiple layers of mysteries and meaning in GF. So I think it’s more likely this is just a superficial meaning for Stan’s symbol.

Looking at the symbol, there could be a few different interpretations, so I’ll present the three most interesting ones I came up with, in order of what I think is the likelihood it’s the real meaning of the symbol.

First, another look at the symbol as it appears on the fez:

Now what if we do this:

 Looks like an eye, right? Just one eye?

The least likely theory is that the symbol has something to do with Stan’s character being connected to Bill’s in some way. It’s a cool interpretation, considering how important the idea of the “beast with just one eye” was, and the fact that, as Mr. Mystery, Stan wore an eyepatch (and so had just one eye visible). If you’re a subscriber to the Same Coin theory, this interpretation might work for that.

I personally don’t think this is it, though. So let’s turn the symbol this way:

Notice the symbol in canon art is always represented with these proportions. Now what does it look like? A bit like the portal casting a shadow? Who lived (figuratively and literally) in the shadow of the portal for 30 years? Yeah.

Stan, with his long-standing self-esteem and self-worth issues, saw himself as just “part of a dynamic duo,” essentially Ford’s shadow, not capable of accomplishing anything on his own. So, this interpretation is a little more likely to me, and I headcanon that Bill’s nickname for Stan would be something like “Shadow,” because it’s not only thematically appropriate, it’s snide and hurtful.

But this still doesn’t seem like it’d be an appropriate symbol for Stan’s character. After all, reductively thinking of him as Ford’s shadow would only represent most people’s (and his own self-) perception of Stan in the first (admittedly long) part of his character arc. So what represents the culmination of his character arc?

Let’s turn the symbol one more time:

Look familiar?

Well, first of all, there are some similar-looking symbols in the history museum in SotBE:

And on the ur-Cipher Wheel in Mabelcorn:

I personally don’t think it’s related to the symbol that’s similar to the Freemason symbol, because that seems on-the-nose and superficial to be on a secret society fez (though a cute reference), and more related to Dipper’s character than Stan’s. I think the other symbol gives a clue as to its meaning, since it’s also incredibly similar to Stan’s symbol’s shape.

…what legendary bird is often represented in this shape? And the shape on the fez? Wings upraised in a circular shape?

So…my best guess is that this is a simplified, stylized version of one of the best symbols for Stan’s character: a phoenix. The imagery of Stan burning is present throughout the series, and of course, Stan is literally immolated and reborn in the finale. I absolutely headcanon that this is what Stan’s symbol really means. (But I don’t think Bill would ever call Stan “Phoenix,” do you?)

All this is just speculation, though. You’d have to have actually been in the writer’s room (or Alex’s brain), or have done a lot of research into ancient symbols (in so many cultures and historical contexts, seriously – Egyptian symbolism, indigenous American tribal symbolism, secret society symbolism, alchemy symbols, etc) to suss out what everything related to Stan and his symbol (the flag/banners for the Royal Order of the Holy Mackerel, the first symbol in comparison to the second symbol – both work for the Phoenix symbolism, the color symbolism in the series, etc) might mean.

Finally finished the revised piece of my first Gravity Falls (potential) print.

Took me way less time to finish it than when I first did it. Maybe because I had everything laid out this time.

See if you can crack all the codes hidden in the image!

Gravity Falls and all related characters are property of Disney.

Dipper was heroic in order to save his sister 

Mabel was heroic when she stood up to Celestabellabethabelle 

Pacifica was heroic when she stood up to her parents to save the town

Wendy was heroic when she fought the Shapeshifter for Dipper’s journal

 Robbie was heroic when he cared for Wendy’s eye and it was sweet of him to do that 

Gideon was heroic when he stood up to Bill and joined the good side

Soos was heroic when he gave up his high score to save the kids 

McGucket was heroic when he saved the gang from the Society of the Blind Eye

Ford was heroic when he stopped the octopus creature from attacking the family 

Stan was heroic when he sacrificed his memory to save the world from Bill 

And as a bonus, Bill was heroic when he became a statue and left us all alone :) 

So as you can see, the Bill Cipher Wheel characters have done many heroic acts and we should forever remember and cherish them :*)

Stan's Twin Theory

Hey, this is a new blog dedicated to Gravity Falls, and specifically to theories about Gravity Falls. We have some interesting (possibly far-fetched) theories. This is one of them.

Stan’s Twin Theory:

Stan has to have a brother (although not necessarily a twin), because he’s Dipper and Mabel’s Great-Uncle, and they all share the same last name, therefore he must have a brother. However, we believe he has a twin. Here’s why:

  • twins are genetic (and the gene can skip generations) 
  • There are some pieces of evidence found in the show that supports our claim

We also believe that Stan’s twin may be the Author. Here’s why:                            

1. The Hiding Spot

Look, a hole in the ground

In Tourist Trapped, Dipper found the 3rd book in the forest near the Mystery Shack. This may seem like a stretch, but think about it! where would you hide something important that you might want to access easily? By your house.                                        

Gideon’s factory

In The Hand that Rocks the Mabel it is shown that Gideon’s family factory is located on Gopher Road, the same street as the Mystery Shack. 

The Mystery Shack’s address via the Deed is 618 Gopher Road.

This could explain how Gideon found the 2nd Journal. 

And it’s interesting to note that Gideon was searching for the 1st Journal at the Mystery Shack. 

Possible hiding spots

There are possible hiding spots listed in the 2nd Journal, they seem to be located around a building similar to the Mystery Shack.

2. The Bunker

The Bunker is located underground, in the forest near the Mystery Shack.

There is a sign on the wall of the bunker that says that it is a nuclear fallout shelter. Now, where would you build a fallout shelter? Near your house of course! During times of bomb scares people would build fallout shelters in their backyard.

And since the Author did experiments in the bunker and was observing a shapeshifter, it would be more convenient for him to have the bunker close to the place where he lived. 

3. The Glasses              

In Carpet Diem, a secret room is discovered in the Mystery Shack, and Stan finds a pair of glasses.                                                                  

Stan finds the glasses

Later he is seen staring at the glasses, and he frowns at them in both scenes.

Stan contemplating the glasses

This could possibly represent an old memory of a friend or *cough* brother. It is obvious that someone lived in that room at some point, so why would Stan want to cover it up?

!!!

In Dreamscapers, it is shown in the 2nd Journal that the Author was surprised to see glasses on the Bill Cipher wheel, possibly because those are his glasses.Take a look at the glasses, they are similar to the ones found in the secret room.

We don’t think these are Stan’s glasses because his glasses are square with rims at the bottom, while the glasses found in the room and on the wheel don’t have rims at the bottom and are rounded.

Also in Dreamscapers, is a flash back of Stan when he was just a wee lad.

Notice his glasses are square and have rims at the bottom.

Here is Stan a little bit older. Notice that he still has square rimmed glasses.

But, in The Time Traveler's Pig, a younger “Stan” is shown with round glasses without rims at the bottom. His glasses look exactly like the one’s found in the secret room. 

Is this really Stan?

Also, this “Stan” has a cleft chin, whereas we have never ever once seen Stan with a cleft chin (not even in flashbacks). 

4. The Calender

Another small point: the calendar in the secret room has the date July 4, 1982 circled. It can be assumed that 1982 is the year the room was abandoned.

The room definitely looks like it hasn’t been touched since the 80’s

However, in the Author’s bunker, there is a calendar on the wall. Guess what year is on the calendar. 1982.

The calendar in the Mystery Shack and the calendar in the Author’s Bunker are from the same year, 1982. 

This suggests that both the room in the Shack and the Bunker were abandoned around the same time. 

5. Wrestling Match Flashback

In a brief scene in Stan’s flashback in Dreamscapers, we see young Stan at a wrestling match. There is a kid reading a book in the stands that looks very similar to child Stan, he even seems to be wearing the same clothing.

Could this be Stan’s twin?

6. The Swing-set 

In Dreamscapers, Stan’s mindscape is very creepy. One notable object in Stan’s mind is a dilapidated swing-set. This is the stuff of horror movies. 

Good times

Since we can assume everything in the mind is a symbol of a significant part of Stan’s life, then this swing-set is very telling. It likely symbolizes a broken childhood. Since it is a two swing swing-set, it could symbolize another person, likely from Stan’s childhood. A close friend… or sibling…

The fact that only one of the swings is broken is also interesting. In Into the Bunker, the Shapeshifter states that the Author “hasn’t been himself in 30 years” suggesting that he probably went crazy. 

Are all these merely coincidences? Maybe… But this is Gravity Falls we’re talking about. This show is filled with foreshadowing, plot twists, and secrets. There is just no way that all of this could be a coincidence. 

So, what do you think? Is this a stretch? Or are we on to something? Feel free to comment with your own theories. The more the merrier! :)

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Gravity Falls: Bill Cipher Wheel

The native people of Gravity Falls prophesied that these symbols could create a force strong enough to vanquish Bill.