Westworld Season 1 Episode 3 Review: The Stray

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We learned a bit more about the park and the history of the "hosts" on Westworld Season 1 Episode 3.

For 30 years Ford worked with his partner, Arnold, simply creating. They had no park, no board. 

And almost immediately upon creating what would later become the hosts, they passed the Turing test, meaning their intelligence was virtually indistinguishable from that of a human.

Hysteria - Westworld

Arnold's quest was to make the hosts conscious, something he felt he couldn't achieve. Ford gave Bernard the impression that it drove Arnold mad, so much so that he deliberately ended his life.

But that whole story sounds a little bit too tidy. Especially in light of the things we're discovering now about the hosts, the way Ford treats them and how he warns Bernard not to fall into the same trap as Arnold. It doesn't sound like he's concerned for Bernard on behalf of Bernard, but on his own behalf, as he'd have to lose another partner.

Ford talks about his partner as if he was crazy to want to keep reaching for the stars, yet he just implemented the reveries that required utilizing memories to get them right.

He's a contradiction. On the one hand he hardly seemed unnerved to learn his modified hosts were speaking directly to Arnold as if he were still present. But he is still of the belief the hosts do nothing, know nothing, that they don't outright tell them to do.

He doesn't get cold. He doesn't feel ashamed. He doesn't feel a solitary thing that we haven't told him to. Understand?

Ford

And he warned Bernard about getting too close, especially because he knows how he still feels about losing his son, Charlie. But isn't Ford working out some of his own personal issues by creating a miniature of himself to whom he can chat about his father and take walks in the desert?

Ford's story got imminently more interesting during "The Stray," and it's his past I am now most eager to dig into. I certainly hope we get that opportunity.

It was kind of heartbreaking to learn Teddy never even had a backstory. He had been killed over a thousand times, yet as important as he was as a host, he had nothing to offer of himself beyond the surface.

As Dolores grows more by the day, she couldn't help but feel puzzled by the word "someday" he was using, which she had come to understand equated with never. Even when he got his new story pertaining to Wyatt, it may not enhance his life with her, but take him away from his old loop forever.

Dolores is changing, of that there isn't a doubt. Bernard even questioned whether she would want to continue to change given the option or would want to stay on the easy path. 

There aren't two versions of me. There's only one. And I think when I discover who I am, I'll be free.

Dolores

The speed with which she's changing, though, has to surprise him. What's interesting to me is how deeply ingrained The Man in Black has been to driving the transformations of both Dolores and Maeve. 

That and the ability to recall, in advance, the violence that was about to befall them. Being shot in the gut isn't something either of them wanted to happen again once they realized it was coming, and if there was anything they could do to get away from The Man in Black, they were willing to do it, even pulling a trigger on a gun.

That was a massive move on the part of Dolores, who tried, but couldn't, pull the trigger when Teddy was trying to teach her to protect herself. So much is hinged on the presence of The Man in Black.

Even when he's not not featured in the hour, he still looms large.

There is so much we have yet to learn about all of these characters to tie them together and put them into a common trajectory. It feels like it's getting closer, but it's just teasing us right now.

Such as with the titular stray. He carved Orion into his woodwork and took off into the hills? 

Orion is known to represent human civilization. Gods came to the earth from Orion and created humanity. And an ancient city north of Mexico City called Teotihuacán has pyramids that reflect the position of computer chips. Hey, if I was AI and somehow got wind of this, I might be interested, too.

If any of this will find it's way into Westworld, I have no idea, but it sure was of interest to me.

And while Teddy may be off as part of Ford's newest and scariest narrative, Dolores found her way into the arms of another man. William wanted an adventure, and something tells me he's going to get more than he bargained not that he has unwittingly rescued Dolores.

Logan will likely be quite jealous and want to do something unseemly with Dolores, the jerk. If a war of some sort breaks out, would Logan be fighting with or against his brother-in-law? Eh, who cares. I doubt he'd last very long.

The only thing that Westworld could do better would be to make the episodes about four hours each. There never seems to be quite enough to satisfy me on these. What about you? What did you think of "The Stray"? What's he doing out there, and why did he bash his own head in? 

Are you skeptical of Ford? Feel better about Bernard being a human now? Drop me a line!

The Stray Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (28 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA), enjoys mentoring writers, wine, and passionately discussing the nuances of television. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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Westworld Season 1 Episode 3 Quotes

William: She was terrified.
Logan: That's why they exist! So you can feel...THIS.

I guess people want to read about the things they want the most and experience the least.

Bernard