Well, how’s that for a season finale? Did your Westworld theories pay off? Were you totally blindsided? Since the series debuted, audiences have set out dissecting every line of dialogue and stayed eagle-eyed for every in-camera clue. It’s a rare feat when a television series can capture its audience’s imagination so consummately (and for some of us, compulsively) as Westworld has. We’re rapt in the story that’s unfolding and the history that precedes it, and the lines between the two have never been exactly clear in the hit show. And boy, these last few weeks have been a doozy.
Westworld has built a world in which the past and the present overlap and intermingle, each playing an active part in comprehending the other’s narrative. By asking us to identify with the robotic hosts, Westworld has largely told its story through a series of unreliable narrators, carefully crafted personalities who are just becoming aware of their own reality. We never know if what we’re seeing is real, if it is happening now, a memory from the past, or as of this season, one of many alternate realities the show has introduced. We don’t even know who is human and who is host half the damn time. At the same time, the human characters are surrounded by such secrecy, warring interests, and mental deterioration that their motivations become even more mysterious. In short, creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy have done an exceptional job of making sure every answer opens up new questions.
We got a lot of answers in Season 1 and a lot of fan-favorite theories proved true. Yes, William was the Man in Black, which meant, yes, the two-timeframe theory was true! Yes, Arnold was a host made in Arnold’s image! Yes, Dolores is Wyatt (kinda). Heck, Reddit even predicted the Season 2 trailer song. Of course, there were plenty of guesses that were off the mark, too. Many of us never quite caught wise to Ford’s true intentions until they were revealed, and there were more than a few crackpot theories that never paid off (or at least, they haven’t yet!) And wouldn’t you guess it, Season 2 was even more of a mindfuck — sometimes to the point of questionable narrative construction. But you better believe that we’ve got questions buzzing around in our mind after that finale.
Here’s your official warning – this article is packed with spoilers for every episode through Season 2 Episode 10, ‘The Passenger’ and was updated regularly throughout the season as new clues were revealed. For now, we’ve got quite a wait until we start getting some answers again, so you better put on your tinfoil hats and get to theorizing!