Westworld (Season 3) Catch-All - Spoilers Ahoy!

Thandie Newton (Maeve) had a really interesting interview on Collider a couple weeks ago.

Thandie Newton wrote:

With the objectification, being in those clothes with the corset pushing the boobs up to my chin and the fishnets, people thought I must be really happy wearing that stuff because it’s so beautiful. I hated it! I totally recognize that it was a beautiful costume. There was no doubt about that. And I was very grateful for the level of expertise, but I couldn’t wait to get out of that f*cking corset. It invited looks, even from the crew, and it made people slightly uncomfortable because my boobs were in my chin and they didn’t know where to look. What it did, actually, was devalue our communication.

[...]

So, I was in those clothes, feeling a bit uncomfortable. When I was naked, people were really respectful and in awe of my “bravery.” The thing about sexy, lacy undies is that you’re covering up the sacred stuff, so that you can forget about that. You’re inviting people to think about what’s underneath, but not see what’s underneath. It’s the allure of the unknown. You’re inviting hysteria with your boobs that are nearly showing nipple and your skirt that’s nearly showing muff.

[...]

But naked, I have all the power because I got there before you did, and what is actually there is vulnerable, life-giving and hasn’t been tampered with. I don’t wax or anything. All of the hosts have full body hair because it’s more period, and even that is shocking. I haven’t done anything to try to invite you in to think about my clitoris, my labia or my vagina. I’ve left myself as I am. And that was really empowering.

Well, that's a really interesting read. I'm glad she shared her thoughts on that.

I was able to watch Ex Machina, and was quite impressed. It was very well handled, and nicely subtle in the way it left questions open. If you haven't seen it, I'd add my voice to the chorus that it's a very interesting viewpoint on the issue, and that it's really, really best to avoid spoilers entirely. If you watch it, like I did, knowing nothing about it, you'll get the most from the story.

I want to talk about it, but A) this isn't the thread for that, and B) spoilers really would really mess it up, so I don't want to even take the chance of doing that through a sideways comment.

But, I will say this much: thanks for the recommendation! I had been exposed to some (most?) of the ideas, but they brought them to life in a way that made them much more real.

Deconstruction of a scene, showing us why Anthony Hopkins is SIR Anthony Hopkins.

That was very cool. I did think that scene was one of the most impactful so far. Now I know why.

I'll agree that Anthony Hopkins is a terrific actor. I also think a lot of that video is suggestive and leads the listener to the same conclusion because people are suggestible by nature.

It would be just as easy to say, "In this scene, what you didn't know is he farted, and was waiting for the other person at the table to smell it. Notice how he leans to his right, smiles slightly and then straightens back up and occasionally smiles in anticipation of a reaction."

Yes, I'm an 8 year old.

Daaaaang. The show finally decided to progress! That was way cool. Maeve's character became the most interesting thing in the last episode, but I didn't think they'd go way further with her character development. Sooooooo cool.

Edit: Oh yeah, the two Radiohead covers were cool. Also, seeing a blurry Man in Black robot from the original movie down in basement 86 was cool.

The Radiohead covers were Motion Picture Soundtrack from Kid A and Fake Plastic Trees from The Bends. Fake Plastic Trees was the piano roll and Motion Picture Soundtrack was the one playing while the tech showed Maeve around. That bit showing Maeve around was just wonderful.

Using Fake Plastic Trees was ridiculously appropriate given the lyrics:

A green plastic watering can
For a fake Chinese rubber plant
In the fake plastic earth
That she bought from a rubber man
In a town full of rubber plans
To get rid of itself
It wears her out
It wears her out
It wears her out
It wears her out
She lives with a broken man
A cracked polystyrene man
Who just crumbles and burns
He used to do surgery
For girls in the eighties
But gravity always wins
And it wears him out
It wears him out
It wears him out
Wears him out
She looks like the real thing
She tastes like the real thing
My fake plastic love

The Motion Picture Soundtrack lyrics are rather applicable too.

Aristophan wrote:

Interesting how Ford dressed up when he goes into the word, whereas Lowe is wearing a baseball cap. Ford's interaction with the boy was interesting - I felt he was modeled after Ford himself as a boy.

Called it.

Aristophan wrote:
Aristophan wrote:

Interesting how Ford dressed up when he goes into the word, whereas Lowe is wearing a baseball cap. Ford's interaction with the boy was interesting - I felt he was modeled after Ford himself as a boy.

Called it.

I loved seeing the O. G. Gunslinger down in the basement when Bernard was poking around. Made the scene a little more tense for people who made the connection.

And Teddy with the Gatling gun? Dayum!

Can't wait to see what Maeve does with her new found genius!

Aristophan wrote:
Aristophan wrote:

Interesting how Ford dressed up when he goes into the word, whereas Lowe is wearing a baseball cap. Ford's interaction with the boy was interesting - I felt he was modeled after Ford himself as a boy.

Called it.

Yeah, I was going to dig up that quote, but you beat me to it.

I guess maybe we're done with scene-setting, and now we're in full-speed-ahead plotline. The world is built, as it were, so now they can go full narrative. Which, oddly, may leave less for us to discuss and speculate about here.

One thing that I'm now wondering, though: is Dolores a mechanical? Bernard bought up that list of the old hosts, but I wasn't clear on whether those were mechanicals, or first-gen bios. I'm pretty sure Dolores was pictured, although it was small and went by quickly.

edit: also, I really love what they're doing with Maeve. She was already nudging out Dolores as the most interesting of the characters, and she's moved way into first place as of the end of this episode.

I was a touch disappointed, though, that so much of this is apparently coming from outside. I wanted it to be more organic, something the hosts were doing for themselves, rather than something that was being done to them.

In that sense, the end of this hour might be the first true independence that any of them have demonstrated.

Other thoughts:

I really want Elsie to be OK. Introducing a new character when another one gets attacked is not a good sign.

So if the show is a continuation of the movie, that seems to mean that they built the new design space on top of the old one - literally burying the past.

Also this:

IMAGE(https://i.ytimg.com/vi/plaJGj3oq8Y/maxresdefault.jpg)

Oh, a random thought: Bernard heading to level B82 implies that there's a lot of basement levels. (I thought that in the first episode, too, but forgot it.)

The wife and I are only on episode 3, but Westworld has really gotten me thinking. I think we all believe that the bad behavior of the guests imparted on the hosts is abhorrent. But for those of us who play open world video games, don't we often do the same thing? I would venture that anyone who has played Fallout, Elder Scrolls, GTA, Saints Row and the like has, at one point or another, gone off on a rampage. Even if we reload a save game to preserve our "good" character, the idea of freedom without consequences has taken us down a dark road. It isn't really all that different from the guests in the Westworld park?

Now there is a huge difference between the two. Our interactions with video games characters are limited to what actions are provided by the coders. Also, I think that some sort of line is crossed by imposing those actions on something in front of us in the real world as opposed to a representation on a video screen. But the same basic principle is there, is it not?

I'm still not convinced Bernard is human. Every time he starts poking around Hopkins mentions his son, he pauses, and gives up whatever he was hunting. Seems like programming to me.

How is it that Hopkins can manipulate the world without saying anything? There have been a few times where he appears to have just stopped time without commanding it.

There were 5 anamolies detected in sector 17. How positive is everyone that the dog is actually a host?

I really wish they could keep their characters consistent.

Last week, Ford was bragging how he wasn't the sentimental type. This week, he's playing Little House on the Prairie with robots made in his own image by his old, dead partner.

Last week, Teddy was on the edge of death and sobbing for Dolores. This week, he's literally a T-800, a heartless, invincible killing machine, complete with chaingun.

Last week, the Man in Black was the big seen-it-all know-it-all sparring with the creative genius behind the park. This week, he can't even talk his way out of a shoulder bump with an NPC.

If they can't keep their characters consistent from week to week, I don't know how they expect us to follow along.

Oh, and one more gripe. If someone comes running to you in the middle of the night with important news, don't break up with them before they tell you the news. That's just beyond silly.

Nevin73 wrote:

But for those of us who play open world video games, don't we often do the same thing? I would venture that anyone who has played Fallout, Elder Scrolls, GTA, Saints Row and the like has, at one point or another, gone off on a rampage.

When I first got into Vice City, being new to the genre (maybe it wasn't even a genre at the time?), I obeyed traffic laws for the first hour or two, until I realized that the game wasn't intended to be played that way. And for a long time, I'd reset the console if I killed a civilian, and start the mission over. By late in the game, though, I gave up on that idea, because the missions were just too hard with that additional restriction. It simply wasn't designed to support a zero-civilian-casualty playthrough. I'm sure it would be *possible*, but extremely difficult.

But, even so, I did do one rampage with my car, running over a ton of civilians, and generally causing mayhem. Once was enough, but I did do it once.

If every Westworld guest went on one murderbinge, that would be one heck of a lot of "dead" hosts.

Alz wrote:

Last week, Ford was bragging how he wasn't the sentimental type. This week, he's playing Little House on the Prairie with robots made in his own image by his old, dead partner.

Ford was on the attack, though, and trying to prove a point. He might have just been lying. Or unaware.

Last week, Teddy was on the edge of death and sobbing for Dolores. This week, he's literally a T-800, a heartless, invincible killing machine, complete with chaingun.

They fixed him up overnight? And we know he's very good with a gun, we saw him really open up against Wyatt's henchmen, even though his pistol was ineffective. Is firing up a chaingun really so out of character?

Also note that he's changing narratives, moving from being a hapless victim of guests intending to rape Dolores, into something new. He outright, explicitly says to the MIB that "you don't know me at all". And the whole park is changing as well. If he *wasn't* somewhat different from episode to episode, that might be more a violation of the underlying story.

Last week, the Man in Black was the big seen-it-all know-it-all sparring with the creative genius behind the park. This week, he can't even talk his way out of a shoulder bump with an NPC.

Yeah, that's a good criticism. But we know that Pariah's a lot harder than other areas, with NPCs that will take your gun away and hit you, so maybe the MIB has come to rely too much on 'god mode'.

Oh, and one more gripe. If someone comes running to you in the middle of the night with important news, don't break up with them before they tell you the news. That's just beyond silly.

Also agreed. That was, indeed, stupid, and done for plot reasons, not because it made sense.

So...

Spoiler:

...is Arnold actually Robert Ford's father?

Aristophan wrote:

I really want Elsie to be OK.

Really? I find her completely unlikable and unbelievable. I practically cringe every time she gets a scene with more than one line. When she went into that room, all I could think was "sure hope she gets whacked here."

Rat Boy wrote:

So...

Spoiler:

...is Arnold actually Robert Ford's father?

This was my thought. Therefore

Spoiler:

"the naivete"

Aristophan wrote:

Interesting how Ford dressed up when he goes into the word, whereas Lowe is wearing a baseball cap. Ford's interaction with the boy was interesting - I felt he was modeled after Ford himself as a boy.

Boom. Right on the money.

BadKen wrote:

And Teddy with the Gatling gun? Dayum!

Can't wait to see what Maeve does with her new found genius!

That gatling gun scene was weird. It just damaged the hosts. The tents, rocks and other stuff behind the hosts remained undamaged. Was it just a direction mistake?

Will Maeve be the... Black (Wo)Man?

Mr Crinkle wrote:
Aristophan wrote:

I really want Elsie to be OK.

Really? I find her completely unlikable and unbelievable. I practically cringe every time she gets a scene with more than one line. When she went into that room, all I could think was "sure hope she gets whacked here."

Agreed!

slazev wrote:
Aristophan wrote:

Interesting how Ford dressed up when he goes into the word, whereas Lowe is wearing a baseball cap. Ford's interaction with the boy was interesting - I felt he was modeled after Ford himself as a boy.

Boom. Right on the money.

BadKen wrote:

And Teddy with the Gatling gun? Dayum!

Can't wait to see what Maeve does with her new found genius!

That gatling gun scene was weird. It just damaged the hosts. The tents, rocks and other stuff behind the hosts remained undamaged. Was it just a direction mistake?

Will Maeve be the... Black (Wo)Man?

How gamey was that part though? I can name so many games where this exact scenario plays out.

Rat Boy wrote:

So...

Spoiler:

...is Arnold actually Robert Ford's father?

That's the impression I got.

Also, Robert Ford's name can't be a coincidence.

slazev wrote:

That gatling gun scene was weird. It just damaged the hosts. The tents, rocks and other stuff behind the hosts remained undamaged. Was it just a direction mistake?

We know that the park has a seemingly-magic control over bullets and even explosives. Hosts are made to be damaged and repaired. Tents and rocks maybe not so much.

The whole bullets thing is just really, really weird. What I'm currently imagining is that they're relatively slow projectiles with small explosive charges, which only trigger when they hit a host or a 'destructible' object. But you really oughta be seeing them hit other stuff and, well, not do anything.

I realize it's a poor idea, and not very defensible, but it's the best I've come up with.

edit: and that doesn't explain explosives at all well. A lot of this stuff is happening way too fast for any verbal authorizations like we saw in one of the early episodes. Maybe it's something *really* science-fictional, like force field control, but technology that impressive ought to be otherwise visible. It would just be too useful for too many things.

second edit: I suppose they could have 'fixed' pyrotechnics, wagons that were already okayed to explode, say. And maybe they'd have some kind of computer check to make sure that no guests were near before letting them go boom. Maybe the verbals are only used for player-contrived explosions in novel/unique places.

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Rat Boy wrote:

So...

Spoiler:

...is Arnold actually Robert Ford's father?

That's the impression I got.

Also, Robert Ford's name can't be a coincidence.

slazev wrote:

That gatling gun scene was weird. It just damaged the hosts. The tents, rocks and other stuff behind the hosts remained undamaged. Was it just a direction mistake?

We know that the park has a seemingly-magic control over bullets and even explosives. Hosts are made to be damaged and repaired. Tents and rocks maybe not so much.

But bullets are still objects. They hurt/damage either way. We saw guests with bruises.
Now that I think about this, I only remember seeing William with the bullet bruise and he's theoretically the Man in Black 30 years previously, so they could have changed how bullets work. Nevertheless, it still seems off to me.

Speaking of the 2 timelines theory, we can apparently distinguish them through the park logo. There are 2 versions. I wasn't a believer in the first episodes, but the series appears to be confirming that more and more as it goes along.

Found a gif.
IMAGE(https://www.fastnewsforum.net/applications/core/interface/imageproxy/imageproxy.php?img=https://i.kinja-img.com/gawker-media/image/upload/s--IL56ptuv--/c_scale,fl_progressive,q_80,w_800/yvzpyyn5msbhp9qnw0aq.gif&key=3156d528dbbd8d5bfb555a20d125bdf18503473565e70d53c67d083d68ac3896)
We can actually see bullets hitting the ground. It was just badly done.