The Westworld Confusion Index is your guide to what we know, what we kind of know, and what we don’t know about Westworld, one of television’s more confusing shows. We will make mistakes, surely, because we rarely know what is happening or why (and whenever we think we’ve figured it out, they go and change it on us), but we will try to have at least as many jokes as mistakes. This is the best we can offer. Here we go.
What We Know
They should not have left the robot bulls so close to Maeve
There are almost certainly more important things to focus on from this episode. Lots of them. Maybe. I’m not entirely sure what happened in any of it. Someone ripped open a portal to robot heaven, for the love of God, and that was maybe the third most confusing thing that happened in the finale’s sprawling 90-minute runtime. But we are going to begin with the bulls, in part so I can post that GIF and in part so I can point out how staggeringly negligent it was of the human Delos employees to leave a number of lifeless hosts, some of which were robot bulls, in close proximity to Maeve, a host with the power to control the minds and actions of other hosts, which the humans knew because they just harvested that power to put it in Zombie Clem like 30 minutes earlier.
It’s like no one there has ever seen a superhero movie. When you catch a villain — not that I would call Maeve a villain, per se, but stick with me — who has mind control powers, you lock them away in a special cell that is suspended in the air in a huge impenetrable empty silo.
But maybe you don’t have an impenetrable silo. That’s fine. Disappointing, but fine. At least keep her away from the robot bulls. I mean, Jesus Christ. Huge unforced error.
Did you see the Charlotte ruse coming? I’ll admit it: I did not. I figured Dolores wasn’t dead because Dolores is now the most important character on the show and because very few people on this show ever “die.” (More on this later.) But I was expecting Dolores to open her eyes on the floor and start massacring Delos-types. I thought it would have something to do with the thing where she turned into Luke Cage when William was trying to shoot her outside the facility, taking bullets and being generally unkillable. Which was weird, in hindsight, since she was killed moments later.
Nope. Bernard — with the help of Ford, who he’s basically hallucinating now, which is fine and normal — made a quick robot Charlotte and then put Dolores’ brain into robot Charlotte’s body and then had robot Charlotte kill real Charlotte and bingo bango Charlotte is Dolores now. Or rather, was Dolores. Charlotte escaped the island with the help of Stubbs (more on him in a minute, too), with a sack of pearls on her person, and appeared to have put herself back into her original body by the end.
Busy day for Dolores, man.
We got a dang secret rip in the universe and it leads to robot heaven
Quibble if you desire over my calling the lush green paradise “robot heaven,” but it was described by Virtual Logan as “a virtual Eden,” and as the hosts crossed over, their lifeless corpses flopped over the ledge in the flooding valley, which sounds a lot like an afterlife. Go back and watch that whole scene, from them marching toward the tear to Zombie Clem bringing chaos on horseback and put it on mute and play “Crossroads” by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony. It will make sense.
Anyway, some nice stuff here. Westworld hasn’t exactly been loaded with happy endings so far, so if we never see Ake or Maeve’s daughter again, it’s cool to know they’re chilling in robot heaven with people they care about. That’s something!
Against truly staggering odds, Lee Sizemore died a hero
Lee Sizemore spent almost two entire seasons being a weasel. He whined and sniveled and drank so much that he urinated off a balcony inside the Delos facility in front of his boss and coworkers. He didn’t bring a single useful skill to the table after the revolution and was responsible for Maeve getting shot and captured. He was just the worst. I kind of loved him.
Which brings us to the reason I’m referring to him in the past tense. My dude decided to be a hero. He sacrificed himself so Maeve and Hector could get away. And he got to give the big martyr speech that he originally wrote for Hector. Could you, perhaps, suggest that maybe letting a robot take those bullets would have been the smarter play, or that a high-ranking Delos figure could have stalled the security forces with words or misdirection or some other plan that didn’t involve him marching into a tornado of lead like Scarface? You could. Later. Let’s let Lee have this for a week or two.
Things are about to… happen?
If I understand this correctly, and I’m at least 60 percent sure I do, the following things are true:
- Dolores and Bernard are off the island and in the real world, in the facility Arnold was building back at the beginning of the season
- The “pearls” Dolores — then as Charlotte — smuggled off the island will allow her to create new robots in the war she plans to fight against humanity, one of which I have chosen to believe will be a new Teddy
- They have a robot-making machine in the facility, which I’m assuming is how Charlotte made the new Dolores and Bernard
- Dolores has acquired almost all the knowledge in the world thanks to Virtual Logan and the library of hosts
- Dolores said this to Bernard: “You’ll try to stop me. Both of us will probably die. But our kind will have survived.”
So… yeah. No clue where this goes. Should be wild, though. I hope there are tons of scenes where Dolores struggles to make sense of the real world, like a robot Encino Man.
What We Kind Of Know
William and/or Emily might have been robots all along, unless they were not, which is also possible, I suppose
Westworld went full Marvel in the finale, dropping in a post-credits sequence that showed William in a room with the very much not-dead Emily, who began asking him questions in the name of fidelity, just like William did to Papa Delos when the immortality program quote-unquote failed. What this appears to mean is that William was right, and the Emily he shot was a fake, and that he is a test subject himself in the program, meaning the “real” William is already dead.
Unless he did kill the real Emily and this is a clone. Or unless this person isn’t even named Emily and William just had a tragic backstory loaded into his brain like Ford did to Bernard. Maybe the person he thinks is his “daughter” is actually a high-ranking Delos executive named, like, Susan. Maybe he hallucinated the whole thing while quickly losing blood out of the stump where his hand used to be. Maybe this is the real Emily, and it’s the real William, and she’s just messing with the old man’s brain by making him think he’s an immortality guinea pig, to get back at him for the stuff with her mom. Maybe I hallucinated this scene and none of you know what I’m talking about.
Can’t rule any of it out, honestly.
UPDATE: It took place in the future. I was so close. (I was not that close.)
Stubbs was a damn robot this whole time, too, again, unless he wasn’t, which is also a possibility, I suppose
Between Stubbs saying he was hired by Ford “so many years ago” and saying loyalty is his “core drive,” and that he would “stick to the plan” Ford gave him, my dude all but looked straight into the camera said “bleep blorp.”
You rascal. Here I thought you were just a mostly incompetent head of security. Turns out you were a super-intelligent robot. Probably. Again, who knows.
What We Don’t Know
Who is dead and who is “dead”?
Westworld has a history of killing characters off and then bringing them back. Just about everyone has died at least once, from Maeve repeatedly killing herself in season one to Bernard shooting himself in the head to Ford getting his head blown off and programming himself into the mainframe. Charlotte got killed by robot Charlotte and came back as Dolores this week. Emily is alive again. It’s one of the tricky things about the show. If death is almost never permanent, then what even are the stakes on the show, you know?
This is important because, as the remaining people from Delos were cleaning up the Zombie Clem host massacre, someone told them to bag the ones they wanted to salvage, and that happened with a shot of a dead Maeve on screen. A lot of our favorite hosts went down this week: Maeve, Snake Lady, Hector, etc. There’s no way we can rule out any of them coming back, just based on this information. The only characters we can probably assume are dead are Lee and Elsie, because they were the humans who died.
Unless they weren’t?
This show is turning me into a crazy person.
What happens to the island and Delos as a corporation?
Delos appears to have quite a bit of juice as an international corporation. At least enough to buy an island and pay off the government so they’re left alone. But one has to assume that, at some point, word of this will leak out, especially the thing where a number of billionaire board members died. That’s gonna be tough to spin, even if you have a whole squad of brilliant robot public relations drones at your disposal.
And also, uh, what does Delos do now? The board is dead, the park’s mastermind is dead, the owner just blew half his hand off trying to shoot a robot he once loved and also might be a clone, the top creative mind died trying to protect a robot madam and her safecracker boyfriend, Charlotte is dead and there’s a robot impostor running around, Lord knows what anyone can expect from Bernard going forward.
Time to short that Delos stock. Billions taught me this.
What did Elsie do to deserve any of this, man?
Updated list of things that have happened Elsie. She has:
- Been kidnapped by her boss
- Been chained to a rock in a cave
- Been saved by the boss who kidnapped her
- Discovered this boss is a robot
- Stumbled across the bodies of dozens of coworkers who were killed in a robot revolution
- Somehow powered through this and developed a plan to save the day
- Been left for dead by her boss, again, as he sped off in a cool little Batmobile go-kart thingy
- Been killed by a corrupt executive just when things started settling down
Poor Elsie. At least Teddy made it to robot heaven. My sweet boy.