HBO News Blog

Westworld: “Chestnut”

By Alexandra Mitchell on Oct 14, 2016 to Westworld

Westworld continues to stun and amaze, throwing its viewers into the technological future and the abilities it offers us; in this instance to engage in the past. For the right price. You can do anything you want to do. Be anyone you want to be. The possibilities are endless.

White Hat vs. Black Hat

Barnes and Simpson preparing to enter Westworld

Two friends embark on their own adventure into Westworld.  Logan, played by Ben Barnes, has already visited the park before and is eager to show his friend around. William, played by Jimmi Simpson, seems hesitant but also excited to experience this new world.  The two men have very different characteristics from the beginning, and their choices continue to illustrate them as the episode goes on. One of the last questions posed to visitors before entering Westworld is which hat would they prefer: white or black.  William, already appearing to be a reserved guy, picks a white hat. When Logan enters the door, we see he has picked a black hat.  As the two engage in the park, William goes out of his way to help Dolores and a guy who has fallen in the mud. But Logan is far more aggressive, pushing people out of the way and eventually stabbing someone who is bothering him.  How will being in this world affect them?  Will Logan become even more reckless and evil as his time in the Old West continues?  Could William, uncertain of himself, step up?  Could we possibly see a fragile friendship turn sour?

Hopkins as God of his world

“You can’t play God without being acquainted with the Devil.” 

As we glimpsed from the end of the last episode, Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) is waking up to what her life truly is. But how much fallout are we going to see on the tech side?  It sounds like quite a few hosts were decommissioned.  But for the ones cleared to remain, what damage is still underneath?  Anthony Hopkins is the reason for the malfunction in his bugged update.  An unintentional mistake, but what more does our “God” have beneath the surface?  How much is his mind going from playing make-believe?  He clearly has an idea of where they should head next, but at what cost?  And then there’s Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) and Theresa (Sidse Babett Knudsen) doing some extracurricular activities post work hours.  How will this “relationship” or lack thereof affect the company?  They are both invested in doing the best for their company, but we also know Bernard has secrets and that he’s good at covering his tracks.  Maeve (Thandie Newton) finds her programming constantly tampered with, and in her own attempt to deal with the issue, wakes up during a procedure.  Oh no, that’s not terrifying or anything. As Maeve is corralled again, what will remain lurking in her psyche following her walkabout?  And what memories will start to surface?

These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends

Harris as the Man in Black looking for answers

Harris as the Man in Black looking for answers

Meanwhile, Ed Harris is riding around all crazy like, killing folks. As we find out, he’s been visiting the park for years. Decades, actually. And I think we’re seeing that psychological affect we have heard the park can have.  He is dedicated to finding out the deepest level of the game: the maze.  WHAT. THE. WHAT?!  I mean, as if this world needed to be more complicated…let’s add a secret bottom level called the maze and in order to figure it out you have to scalp a ton of people….ahhhh.  The big question now is will the Man in Black make it to the maze and what terror will be wrought when he does?   Still so many questions. For now though, here’s a peak of what’s to come.

  • Jef Dinsmore

    Now we have a perspective from each type of character; Hosts, Staff and now Guests. We have our two major conflicts of the series now well defined: corrupted programming among Hosts and the quest of The Man In Black.

    We will now have the slow-burn decay of Dolores, the disturbing breakdown of Maeve, the antics of Sizemore, the scramble of the Staff for a solution, the power of Ford to consider and the mystery of the maze to look forward to seeing in the weeks ahead. Good luck with all that.

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