Every week, it seems like Westworld asks more questions than it really answered, but as we hit the back half of the first season, things look like they might start getting revealed. With Maeve gaining perspective outside of the park, closed-off sections of Westworld being rummaged for clues, and a bunch of underlying plots seemingly about to come into the light, the chaos we’ve been promised since the first trailer for the show looks to be well on its way. So, before it hits the fan, we’ve got just a few more questions that we thought about watching the latest episode.
9. Seriously, How Bad Is Security In The Maintenance Area?
For all the talk of the strict rules and regulations for employees of Westworld, Maeve and Felix sure do manage to traverse several levels of the backstage area without anyone even looking at them, let alone asking why a nervous guy still wearing his scrubs and an unauthorized woman are wandering around. Sure, Felix makes a few attempts to point out that he could get fired, but it really doesn’t seem like anyone ever actually looks outside of the glass walls that every room in that area seem to be made of. Surely techs aren’t allowed to walk around the halls without authorization, especially leading a host around. Actually, it does bring to light that while there are clearly security guards who deal with the park itself, there don’t seem to be any who watch over the employees, and there’s a decided lack of secure entry points, at least in the areas we saw Maeve walk through. And where were they headed in the elevator before Maeve saw the video and they suddenly went back to their starting point? What was even the ultimate goal of going walkabout?
8. Wait A Second, The Hosts Are Programmed To Feel Pain?
Something that kind of got glossed over is the fact that one of the parameters for hosts is the ability to feel and tolerate pain. That seems…unnecessarily cruel, right? We get the whole idea of “realism above all”, which is entirely why Westworld is inevitably going to have a robot revolt on its hands (not a spoiler, just a fair assumption), but is it really necessary to give hosts every single human emotion and sensation, rather than just program them to be able to convincingly pretend that getting shot hurt them? What’s the ultimate point of making them feel pain? Maeve, for example, is a prostitute in the introductory area of the game. She’s not going to be the host that needs to shrug off multiple gunshots, if she gets shot, she’s dead basically instantly. The only purposes to make her feel pain are ones that absolutely make us shudder.
7. Why Did They Agree To Raise Maeve’s Intelligence?
Listen, we’re not sure what you would do, but if we have the ability to change the Intelligence level of a robot in our hands, which clearly takes effect immediately, and it’s demanding that we raise that number to super-human levels, we’re pretty sure we wouldn’t just shrug our shoulders and say “What’s the worst that could happen?” No, given that opportunity to solve the problem of a robot that has shown to be growing more aware of its situation, is now able to cause harm to humans, and is currently blackmailing us, we’re pretty sure we’d ram that Intelligence slider all the way down to “potato”, then have the drooling automaton moved down to that creepy vault where they store decommissioned models. Professional curiosity is one thing, but there is no good ending that comes from making Maeve smarter, especially since she’s already shown how adept she is with a scalpel.
6. What Is The Real Truth About Ford’s Hidden ‘Family’?
Maybe the story that Ford told Bernard about the unregistered first generation hosts is true, and they were a gift from Arnold to Ford which resemble Ford’s real family, and he keeps them around for purely nostalgic purposes. Of course, the fact that they ignore all commands except those issued by Ford (and even then, they can still lie to him if he doesn’t switch to diagnostic mode) should be a major red flag, but we’ll assume Bernard is won over by Ford’s story and decides there’s no real harm in letting a clearly eccentric old man have his little corner of the park, massive security hole though it may be. Of course, for all this to be true, you have to ignore one obvious piece of photographic evidence that was dug up almost immediately by hawk-eyed viewers. Namely, the father figure in Ford’s little family looks exactly the same as the picture of Arnold we got a brief glimpse of in an earlier episode. Don’t believe us? Just have a look:
So, is that host actually Arnold somehow, or is it the picture that is the lie, and we still don’t actually know what Arnold looks like?
5. Did Teddy Just Unlock New Programming?
It really seems like Ford did something during his meeting with the Man In Black to turn Teddy from tragic hero into ass-kicking gunfighter. We can’t be the only ones who noticed that when Ford stood up from the table and let the piano start playing again, Teddy became more animated and decisive. Now this week, Teddy suddenly has more of his past revealed, and it turns out he might actually be a bad guy, and one who is really good with a machine gun. Is Ford actually helping the Man In Black in his quest by fleshing out Teddy’s backstory? Or has Ford provided him with a sidekick who will be in a prime position to thwart the Man In Black at his moment of triumph?
4. Who Is This New Player?
Charlotte Hale, the young, bikini-wearing executive who a drunken Lee managed to massively embarrass himself in front of (by the way, either he’s got some really good job security, or he’s about to be incredibly fired), is a new X-factor who has arrived fairly late in the game, at least in terms of the first season of the show. With Westworld already having a massive cast of characters, almost all of whom are currently dealing with a litany of mysteries, it would seem to us that you only introduce and spotlight a new character if she has something really important to add to the plot in the last few episodes of Season One. With the revelation in this episode that Theresa is somehow involved in stealing data from the park, is Charlotte also part of that conspiracy? Does she know about Arnold? Is she a robot? Okay, that last one is just standard for everyone on the show at this point, but with a bunch of questions that need to at least start getting answered, Charlotte has given us a few more to add to the pile.
3. Why Would You Investigate A Mystery Alone?
Honestly, the employees at Westworld seem to have less self-preservation instinct than a teenager in a horror movie. In this episode, on two separate occasions, someone goes to investigate a strange anomaly in the park entirely alone, without any backup or way to protect themselves. First, Bernard goes into the closed-off Sector 17 to find out what it going on with the 5 unregistered hosts, which seems like a horrible idea and does nearly end up with him getting choked out by one of the hosts he finds, if not for Ford’s intervention. Then, clearly not learning from her boss’ very recent mistakes, Elsie wanders off into an abandoned area of the park tracing the mysterious satellite signal, something which might actually threaten the park and the company, and it never occurs to her that this is a secret that someone might protect, and even kill to keep it that way? Why not take Luke Hemsworth along for the ride? Sure, he’s the lesser of three Hemsworths, but he can still handle a gun. This seems like an especially dumb move for Elsie after her last trip into the park, where she came really, really close to getting her skull crushed in with a big rock by a malfunctioning host. Yes, the park’s supposed to be safe, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take some precautions.
2. What Is Going On With Theresa?
So, Theresa is behind the mysterious satellite signals somehow, which we’re willing to bet isn’t her idea, but a plot from higher up the food chain. Given that we know very little of the world outside the park, what could the Delos Corporation have in mind that could involve using the hosts in some way? The most obvious answer seems to be something that would involve using the same technology in real-world applications, and the first one that springs to mind is warfare. The application of disposable but intelligent soldiers who always follow orders seems obvious. Perhaps the more important question is, why would the company that owns, or at least funds, Westworld need to be so secretive about what they’re doing? Isn’t it all their stuff anyway? We wouldn’t be shocked if Theresa is just an unwitting pawn who might not even been involved, but one thing is certain, there are a whole lot of secret plots going on in Westworld right now.
1. Who Attacked Elsie?
We’re not going to say she’s dead until there’s a body, but whatever the case, Elsie made her first mistake, as we mentioned, by checking out this lead alone, and then made the second, and potentially fatal error, of continuing to stick around once she discovered proof of the larger conspiracy in play. Come on, you just discovered, and told your boss, that there are hosts in the park that have the ability to ignore the “do not harm humans” protocol, which is a game-changing secret that it’s very likely someone wouldn’t want found out, and also means you actually aren’t safe to wander around the park anymore, and your first instinct is to hang around and keep sifting through the data? Not to mention the fact that you also discovered a conspiracy that involves at least one highly-positioned executive, who almost certainly has the power to make you disappear. At that point, as far as Elsie knew, only she and Bernard were aware that she’d uncovered this, so the smart move is to cover everything back up, and consider coming back in daylight, perhaps with some backup. Of course, now Elsie’s been attacked, and since Theresa’s talking with Bernard in her suite, the obvious question is, by whom?