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“There has been an awakening. Have you felt it?”
No, the Force is not awakening in Westworld, but something forceful is getting out of bed nonetheless. There’s a promise baked into the new HBO show, stemming from its roots in Michael Crichton’s 1973 film of the same name: somehow, some day, the park’s robot hosts are going to wake up, and it won’t be pretty for the flesh-and-blood humans in their vicinity. The show’s fifth episode, “Contrapasso,” made huge strides in that regard thanks to two very different hosts: Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and Maeve (Thandie Newton), both of whom get closer to sentient independence than ever before, especially the latter of the pair.
Here are 10 of the biggest moments from the episode:
1. Mole Patrol
So much happens in this episode that it’s easy to overlook the Elsie (Shannon Woodward) story. Doing so would be a major mistake: Elsie discovers that the straying, self-head-bashing host was armed with a laser-based satellite uplink, literally in his arm, used to smuggle information out of Westworld to … who, exactly? That’s unclear, as is the person responsible for tinkering with the host. What is clear, if it wasn’t already, is that someone on the inside is working toward an outside agenda.
2. The Magic Word
It’s “Dolores,” of course, at least it is for Teddy (James Marsden). The Man in Black (Ed Harris) realizes that he needs Teddy in order to track down Wyatt and, therefore, the Maze he’s searching for. How does the Man bring Teddy along for the ride? By pumping him up with a few gallons of blood liberated from a freshly killed Lawrence (Clifton Collins Jr.), and telling him that Wyatt has Dolores as a hostage. It’s a lie, of course, but it’s more than enough fuel to get Teddy back on the hunt.
3. Lawrence of Pariah
Don’t be too sad about poor Lawrence. The Man in Black slits his throat, and in no time at all, Lawrence re-emerges in the episode, this time as the kingpin of Pariah, a town filled with mischief and murder, far away from Sweetwater. After weeks on the road as the MiB’s unlucky sidekick, here we see Lawrence as a true criminal and mercenary. As he eloquently puts it: “Personal grudges hold no sway where profit’s concerned.”
4. Grand Theft Wagon
Logan (Ben Barnes) convinces William (Jimmi Simpson) to tag along on a mission to steal nitroglycerine from a bunch of Union soldiers. At first, William is very much against the idea, but he gets into the spirit of things as soon as Dolores’ life is threatened. William kills a host who is about to kill Dolores, then kills another one out of seemingly pure instinct, then kills a third to save Logan. “That’s the spirit! I knew you would get into this place,” Logan shouts — and if certain theories pan out, Logan has no idea just how much William’s going to get into it.
5. Eyes Wide Shut
When Dolores, William and Logan return with TNT in their possession, they’re invited to a sex party. Not just any sex party, either: Pariah puts on the single most surreal sex party this side of Eyes Wide Shut, with male and female hosts (and who knows how many humans) painted in shades of gold and red, feeding each other fruit and performing acts that are hardly fit for print, and only slightly more fit for television. Good thing Westworld isn’t television; it’s HBO.
6. Logan’s Run
Of course, Logan is thrilled with his victory earlier in the day, the sex party at present and the promise of joining Westworld’s war narrative in the near future. William? Not as excited. The two “friends,” if you can call them that, get into a big scuffle where they both air their grievances against each other. In the moment, it looks like Logan’s the winner, but it’s William who has the last laugh. After the “Confederales” find out that their TNT has been stolen and replaced with liquor, they immediately turn the tables against the patsies Lawrence has left behind — including Logan, who gets captured while William happily watches. That’s going to be an awkward scenario to revisit at William’s wedding.
7. Dolores Got a Gun
The Confederales surround William and Dolores, and it’s almost lights out… until Dolores channels her inner Terminator and systematically shoots the mercenaries dead. She explains herself to a dumbstruck William: “You said people come here to change the stories of their lives? I imagined a story where I didn’t have to be the damsel.” With that, William and Dolores hop on a train headed out of Pariah, alongside Lawrence, their next moves unknown.
8. The Friendship Has Sailed
Elsewhere, during her dreamlike visits, Dolores finally comes face to face with Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins), filling in for Bernard’s (Jeffrey Wright) usual routine. It’s perhaps the first time we have seen Ford… frightened? Unnerved? It’s hard to pinpoint the emotion, but Ford seems genuinely puzzled about Dolores and her likely relationship with Arnold, the park’s late co-founder, who Ford credits as Dolores’ maker. When Dolores asks Ford if they’re friends, the scientist coolly replies: “I wouldn’t say that at all.” His eyes are wet, and his mouth is fixed as though he’s chewing on the toughest of puzzles. Here we see the omnipotent Ford, for once not fully in control of his world — and almost certainly not for the last time, either.
9. Something True
At long last, Ford and the Man in Black meet, if only for the first time on the show. Like Ford and Dolores, it’s clear these two are not exactly friends. The Man reiterates his desire to pursue the late Arnold’s legacy, to discover “something true” about the nature of Westworld. When he threatens to open Ford up with a knife to see what secrets he hides, Teddy springs to action, grabbing the Man’s knife and slamming it into the table. The Man is amused, and so is Ford, who says he won’t stop the black-hatted gunslinger from pursuing the Maze: “Far be it from me to get in the way of a voyage of self-discovery.”
10. Eyes Wide Open
Finally, in an episode filled with massive moves forward, the biggest reveal is saved for the end: Maeve waking up in front of livestock technician Felix (Leonardo Nam), who has spent the episode freaking out over Maeve’s corpse repeatedly winding up on his table — especially after she broke free back in episode two. Now, it appears that Maeve’s recurring visits weren’t accidental. After Felix successfully brings a mechanical bird online, the bird lands on a very awake Maeve’s finger — like a Disney princess come to life, albeit with a much greater promise of violence to come. Maeve calmly tells the technician: “It’s time you and I have a chat.” That chat can’t come soon enough.
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