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In the Wake of Westworld

It’s Spoilers All the Way Down, Folks.

Westworld

If you’re anything like me, you’re currently picking pieces of your brain off of the floor after the mind blowing finale of Westworld. But – if you are anything like me, you’re trying to put more than the pieces of your scattered brain together again after said finale as well. These violent delights truly did have violent ends, and the fans cannot get enough. The question we’re all asking now more than anything is: when will we get more?

Sadly, Nolan and his wife Joy have revealed that there’ll be nothing before 2018, and while that’s certainly a long time to wait they promise that that time is being utilized to continue the complexity of the absorbing narrative that they strove so hard to achieve in season one. There were hints in his LA Times interview that there might be more than just the Westworld park, and that the samurai we saw in the finale might be a big part yet to come. He also hints that we’ve likely not seen the last of Ed Harris’ character William, a.k.a. The Man in Black, who probably had the most shocking reveal of the ten episode series.

Still, with so many questions answered, even more are cropping up. At least they are in my poor, addled brain as it works overtime trying to see each and every curve ball that might be coming down the road. What I want to do is ask the questions that no one else seem to be asking, or at least are being asked with less consistency than other things.  More importantly, I want the answers. Much like The Man in Black and his maze, I want to know what still ticks underneath the skin of Westworld and her hosts. What mysteries are left to unlock? What else awaits us in the days to come? What reveals have been hinted at but not completely seen?

Westworld

First and foremost what I want to know, is Doctor Robert Ford really dead? Or…was he always dead?

We’ve seen already with people like Bernard that those who are gone can be remade. What if Ford truly is the man behind the curtain and everyone, audience included, hasn’t even gotten to the yellow brick road yet? What if the Ford we’ve seen since day one wasn’t really Ford? Or what if Ford, like the real Bernard, has been dead all along too? What could this possibly change for the future of the vision of Westworld? It might explain why he’s suddenly so concerned with the hosts becoming “conscious” or sentient instead of profits and pushing the technology for his creation forward. It would also explain his sheer non-concern for the sanctity of human life over that of the hosts. What lies in store is hard to say, but whatever it is, things are only just now beginning to heat up.

Second, Is this Westworld connected to the 1973 film?

The theory was a weak yes until these last few episodes, and now I’m more or less running with the idea that it’s not. While the inspiration is there, more points to this run of Westworld being its own thing, especially now that we know about the actual incident from thirty years ago not having anything to do with all of the hosts killing all of the guests, but one host killing all other hosts and one staff member. With the timeline gaps more or less set in stone, it’s very likely that Westworld is everything that we’ve seen within the confines of the HBO story. Still, I wouldn’t be adverse to some surprises in this realm, but at this point in time such a tie in wouldn’t be prudent.

Is there more than one park?

The more we think about it, the more likely it is. The original Westworld film originally featured three different parks: the titular Westworld, Medieval World, and Roman World. While we’ve heard no mention of other parks yet, that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. They could also be in the works, or in very early preliminary stages like we saw in the Westworld of 35 years ago.

Consider also that Maeve’s daughter’s location was listed as being in “Park 1”. Since we’ve never seen Westworld partitioned into quadrants of “parks” in any of the maps thusfar, that can only lead us to conclude that there are indeed different, wholly separate parks.

Who did William/The Man in Black end up marrying?

So we’ve seen the picture of William’s intended twice now, but this is not the woman The Man in Black described to the blonde back at the bonfire with an unconscious Teddy on the outskirts of Westworld. TMiB clearly described his wife as being a beautiful blonde, meanwhile the picture of the woman Logan showed us in episode nine was a brunette. Was the marriage blown when William’s intended found out he preferred a robot to her? Was this “mysterious blonde” a way of William making up for his lost love in Dolores? If any of that is true, how then did William still make his way into DeLos without the approval of Logan’s father? Hopefully this is fleshed out in future seasons of Westworld, because I for one am dying to know.

Westworld

Is Bernard the only “undercover” host?

At this point it’s too early to say, but given mine and others’ theories about Ford I’d say he probably isn’t. Where exactly this comes into play just yet, and how, is up for grabs, but with thirty plus years of being able to plant these things just about anywhere, I’d start hedging my bets on others cropping up over the next few seasons.

What sort of music can we expect to hear in the upcoming seasons?

This might be a strange point to bring up, but after listening to the Westworld soundtrack I had a very uncomfortable realization: I never actually heard the music in Westworld while watching it. It was such a part of the story, a part of the background, that it never stood out on its own. I feel that this was purposeful.

For those of you who don’t know, Westworld’s soundtrack composer is done by the same man who works on the Game of Thrones soundtracks: Ramin Djawadi who is known for making powerful moments in the simplest of manners. Djawadi is a maestro, and more than ever I can’t imagine anyone else at the helm for the music of Westworld.

What might have been missed was all of the eclectic covers that soundtrack features, cleverly disguised through the simplistic tones of the brothel’s player piano, tunes like “Paint it, Black”, “House of the Rising Sun”, and “Exit Music (For a Film)” just to name a few. Each song was reimagined in such a way that there’s a spark of familiarity, of life, within the music, but it fades again just like Dolores and her fluttering grasps at consciousness time and time again. We melt back into what’s going on in front of us, and the music hints that we’re missing something just below the surface that we’d find if only we knew to dig a little deeper. The music is the maze that leads us down this rabbit hole and we don’t even realize we’re falling.

Sadly, we won’t know the answers to any of these questions until at least 2018, and I’m sure by then we’ll have even more questions as new theories surface over time. Nevertheless, I am now more eagerly awaiting the next season of Westworld with more fervor than I am waiting for the next season of Game of Thrones! This may be sacrilege to admit, but I don’t care.

As of this moment I sincerely feel that Westworld is probably the best thing to happen to television. If you’re not on that horse, saddle up partner, because you’re in for a wild ride!

Check out the trailer below. All ten episodes of season one are now available on HBO Go and HBO Now!

Beth Meadows
A graduate of Full Sail University in the field of Game Design, Beth currently works at a small game development studio as a QA Engineer (a fancy name for a QA Tester - which means she plays video games for a living). Beth is obsessed with Heroclix and loves all things BioWare. In her spare time she enjoys gaming, reading, writing, and playing with her dogs (yes, she's a crazy dog mom). She's also quite a big fan of sleeping and eating and is trying to figure out how to combine these abilities.
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