Westworld Walkthrough: S2E7 – “Les Écorchés”

The hit HBO show Westworld is back for a second season. Each week we’re going to be walking through each new episode, and giving our thoughts on how thing played out. Fair warning we’re going to get into some spoiler territory here.

For the first time this season, we get a rather linear storyline. We also get a glimpse into how the timeline has actually played out after the massacre at the gala. They essentially explained that we had not seen Elsie during the first few episodes because she was off looking for a vehicle for her and Bernard and likely got wrapped up in something else. We’re at a point now where it’s uncertain how this is going to end. But overall, it’s not looking good for the employees of the park and the teams Delos sent in to stabilize things.

Image via HBO

Maeve

Maeve FINALLY finds her daughter, and once again loses her. Seeing her take fight back against William was amazing. But it’s a shame that it essentially helped bring her down. Maeve is smart enough to have been able to work her way out of the situation with William, but her desire for vengeance led her astray. I think that’s an important lesson for her to have learned moving forward. Maeve has clearly been growing to potentially become a great leader of the hosts. One that is fair, and truly believes that they deserve whatever life they choose. Having her face a loss, based on her own decisions concerning her freedom, will without a doubt help build her up even more. And potentially turn her into the best leader the hosts could ask for.

Image via HBO

Ashley

I always thought that Liam Hemsworth wasn’t being used as much as he should have been in the first season. And the second season has definitely made up for it. Ashley at this point is probably the biggest wildcard in the show. We know that he’s dedicated to his job, and he does his best to do his job well. But I don’t think that dedication extends to Delos when there are bigger stakes at hand. We’ve seen him humanize the hosts much more than most park employees. When Abernathy is nailed to the table, he feels it’s excessive. When they virtually waterboard Bernard he seems uncomfortable with it. Everyone else seems to look at the hosts as purely lifeless robots, or as truly living things that deserve to move forward. Moving forward, I honestly believe Ashley will have trouble choosing sides in the end. The show is rolling towards an eventual standoff that results in the question of, should the hosts be free. There’s bound to be some humans that side with the hosts. And I’m beginning to think Ashley may be one of them.

Image via HBO

Charlotte and Delos

Charlotte tells Ashley that the park is a “turning point” for humanity. Given Ford’s revelation to Bernard, within the Cradle, that the park is being used to create duplicates of it’s guests, Charlotte is clearly aware of this. The most intriguing aspect of this though is the fact that it makes the hosts’ rebellion a much more complex situation. If Delos is making hosts based on actual humans, with the hope of essentially advancing human evolution, then the hosts gaining consciousness should technically be part of the plan. Even if they hope to control them still, it’s something that they must be aware of. You don’t create life and expect it not to have consciousness. So while the question has been open as to how Delos reacts to the hosts gaining consciousness, a new layer has been added here as to how much they hoped to still have control over said consciousness.

Image via HBO

Bernard

The episode kicks off with a major game changer. Ashley, Charlotte, Strand and everyone else now know that Theresa was killed and that Bernard is a host. We also discover that our Bernard isn’t the first Bernard that Ford made. The real question there is why the previous Bernards didn’t work out. As each of them seemed to have significant damage done to them. Given that Bernard is no longer fully in control of his own body, it’ll be interesting to see how he may go back and forth moving forward.

Image via HBO

Ford

I honestly believe that every single thing that has happened has been part of Ford’s plan. That he was prepared for all of it. That he moved things in the exact right way for it all to unfold as it has. I think that he knew Dolores would blow up the cradle, and planned for Bernard to enter the cradle and then use him as a vessel of sorts, in order to help him move his story along. There’s been a popular theory that Teddy’s mind would be put into Bernard’s body. But I think it’s even more interesting that Ford has entered into Bernard’s mind. The biggest question now concerning Ford himself, so to speak, is what his “bigger plans” are.

Image via HBO

The Cradle

Now that the Cradle is gone, the only chance for the hosts to go back to normal rests on the code inside Abernathy’s head. Given that Dolores has it, there’s no telling if it will survive the rest of the season. If it’s destroyed, that’s a major moment for the show. It means that the park may truly be gone forever. The hosts can’t just be reprogrammed back to what they were. If that code is taken, or destroyed, everything changes drastically.

With only three episodes left, I’m honestly unsure of how this season will end. Everything is clearly leading to a final standoff between the Hosts and the Employees. But I guess the big question is what happens after that. Even if one side wins, there’s still a lot left to tell here. Hopefully we’ll begin to get more of an idea of the final endgame for this season during the next episode.

Join us next time when we look at the 8th episode of Season 2, “Kiksuya.” And be sure to catch Westworld on HBO every Sunday at 9pm.

Image via HBO

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