After over 16 months away, WestWorld finally returns next week for its sophomore season. The long wait has only fuelled speculation for what the upcoming season of western bloodshed and sci-fi exploration will reveal and I’ve condensed my feelings on what I think is to come into several hopes for season 2. Last week I discussed four of them (which you can read here) and now here are my final four, focusing on the Host leaders, arrogant humans and questions left unanswered in the first season.
Dolores the villain, Maeve the hero
This is a concept that is seemingly set up in the season 1 finale and I want them to run with it in season 2. Delores is merged with the “Wyatt program”, the personality of a would-be villain in the park’s new narrative, and her experiences over the last 30 years allow her to achieve true consciousness and with it she kills Ford, multiple Delos board members and begins the Host uprising. Maeve meanwhile gives herself the ability to control other Hosts in order to escape but decides not to use it and instead reasons with Hector and Armistice, gaining their help and trust without using her God-like powers, ostensibly because she doesn’t want to become like the humans by abusing their power over her people. Dolores is driven by revenge and hate, the dark aspects of humanity, while Maeve is driven by the love of her “daughter”, the light aspects of humanity, who she risks everything for and overcomes her programming to seek out and save. The supposedly innocent farm girl becomes the lead villain while the abused Madame becomes the hero is wonderfully unexpected and if I’m not mistaken Dolores and Maeve have never met in the show. It’ll be fascinating when they both come together as leaders of their own pockets of resistance and potentially clash over their ideals.
What’s the deal with Ghost Nation?
Despite sounding like a Mission Impossible film, Ghost Nation is the enigmatic and deadly Native American tribe of Hosts surrounded by mystery. The last we see of them in season 1 is when they ambush Stubbs in episode 9 which leaves his fate unknown with his commands of “Freeze all motor functions” somehow not working. So how can this be? It could be that Elsie is controlling them and made them bring Stubbs to her to reveal what she knows about Bernard and Delos. Also, earlier in the season, Maeve finds some Native Americans, who may or may not be part of Ghost Nation, who worship the humans and make wooden idols of the humans wearing their futuristic clothes/uniforms. How is this allowed to occur? Was it Ford’s doing just as another clue to help Maeve on her path to discover the truth similar to how he is probably the one leaving the maze symbol everywhere to help Delores in a comparable fashion? I’m hoping for answers in season 2.
Explosives in the Hosts
In episode 8 of season 1, in a scene between Maeve, Felix and Sylvester, there is a casual reference to the fact that every Host has an explosive in their C6 vertebrae that will go off if they attempt to leave the park. This is never mentioned again and is presumably disabled in Maeve before she makes her escape attempt before deciding to go back. My hope is that in season 2 this proves to be more than just one line of dialogue and that the bombs play a part in the story. Does this mean that the Host uprising could be squandered early on by humans detonating every explosive and eliminating all the Hosts? Do the humans still have control over the explosives after the control room goes dark and locks down in the season 1 finale? Is the bomb automatic and will only detonate when a Host exits the park’s boundaries? If the explosives can be disabled like Maeve’s then will the Hosts seek out Felix or Bernard to help them do so or are the Host’s happy to spend their existence locked in their antiquated world?
Lee meets his demise
You could say that Lee Sizemore is the architect of all the Host’s pain and suffering. While guests are free to do what they want, Lee writes and monitors all the narratives in WestWorld, deciding who lives and dies, when and how. He has sentenced Hosts to die over and over again and has programmed some to be little else than pin cushions and victims. With the Host uprising now occurring you have to imagine that when they find out his job he’ll be the top of their hit list. Sure, he’s got some story left to tell with Peter Abernathy now that his head full of files and secrets is missing but after that it’d be a great end of his story to watch the Hosts confront and kill him. Maybe those in ‘Cold Storage’, the victims of his morbid imagination, could get their hands on him like ghosts returning from the grave to hunt their killer.
Next week I’ll have one more WestWorld article before season 2 begins, this time speculating what the other parks could be but for now what are your hopes for Westworld’s second season? What do you think about my hopes? Let me know in the comments and geek out with me about TV, movies and video-games on Twitter @kylebrrtt.