Science fiction usually lacks authentic emotion, but Westworld has found out how to fantastically marry the two using the perfect cast and it is awesome.
“Violent delights have violent ends”
In October 2016, HBO released Westworld, created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy. The series is based on the 1973 movie with the same title created by award-winning author Michael Crichton.
The series is focused on a “theme park” based on the Wild West where rich, regular people can explore and interact with androids (“hosts”) who are programmed to seem as human as possible. The regular people are able to do anything to the hosts, A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G, and the hosts are not able to kill them. It’s no wonder rich men love the place, they have all the fun without any of the consequences.
Having never seen the movie Westworld was based on, everything came as a surprise. The idea that you could create anything you wanted and you choose to create the Wild West was both interesting and confusing to me.
The first, second and even third episode was confusing. We were trying to figure out who was in charge, what were their names and what exactly was the end goal. With a power like artificial intelligence at such an advanced level, the options were endless.
Once we thought we knew what was going on, we found out that we had no idea what was going on! Without giving anything away, the series surprised us with a major plot twist, casually thrown in mid-series. Thinking this was the only big surprise, we gathered our thoughts, created new theories and continued watching.
Westworld creates an authentic western world, allowing you to genuinely feel empathy towards the hosts, such as Dolores, Teddy and especially Muave. I want their stories to work out, even though their stories, as we know, are all programmed and being repeated every day, all the time.
Secondly, you are introduced to the designers, sponsors and programmers, etc. There are obvious players such as Ford and Bernard, they each have their own struggles and at some point other characters sneak into the show and into your heart, such as Felix, the ‘butcher’.
Thirdly, there are the humans that are inside Westworld, each on their own mission, some looking for sex and shooting and others trying to find a deeper meaning to life, nonetheless, you are worried about them too.
Following each of these stories is stressful, but consumed every bit of my attention. We assume they will overlap at some point and that the characters will meet in Westworld, that the creators will take part and that somehow everything will come together as we assume.
And it does, but in a way even more surprising and clever than we could ever have imagined.
If I haven’t convinced you, check out the trailer.
And for those of you who have already seen it and are waiting patiently for the next season, exhale, we have a while to wait. Season 2 will be released in 2018, which means they will have enough time to think up some more surprises. I am going to stock up on Rescue Remedy in the meantime.