We are digging ever deeper into the truth about Westworld, but I feel dumber than ever after watching "Contrapasso."
I'm on a two-day hiatus from caffeine, and that's never easy. But Westworld Season 1 Episode 5 was also a lesson in subtleties. Nothing came out and smacked you in the face with its meaning.
What I took away from the hour is that in the middle of the maze not only will we find Arnold, but the key to why he wanted to end Westworld 35 years ago. Maybe. Or maybe 100 million other beautiful parts which have been in hiding, similar to how The Man in Black saw and now sees the hosts.
How do you like to watch television?
Do you just sit back, watch and enjoy the surprises as they come, or do you like to theorize about everything that might have meaning?
If you haven't noticed, I definitely fall into the latter category. In real life, I'm not the kind of person who hears something on TV and thinks, "Huh, wonder what that's about?" Immediately jump on the internet and research it until I know what it's about, or have as good an idea as I can from a number of sources.
So when something happens on Westworld, I'm immediately in mystery mode. What's happening and where will this clue lead?
There were a lot of clues during this hour and a lot of fun reveals. There were also a lot of points that might have been there simply to throw us off base.
It's unclear exactly where Dolores stands with the bicameral mind at this point. Yes, there are voices in her head. At one point, I thought she was only hearing her daddy, the man we met on Westworld Season 1 Episode 1. But now it's apparent she's hearing Arnold, and quite possibly understands it's him.
She still sees things of which she's unsure, and her memories are flooding back at odd times. It's also very hard to understand how she gets from the middle of Pariah to sitting in front of Ford. But one thing is certain: She can willingly lie, willingly falsify her analytics and probably more.
Ford: I'm sorry to bother you. But there's no one else left who was there. No one who understands, as we understand.
Dolores: Are we very old friends?
Ford: No, I wouldn't say friends, Dolores. I wouldn't say that at all.
Dolores [after Ford leaves]: He doesn't know. I didn't tell him anything.
She's seeing so many images of herself around the park, I'm beginning to wonder if there are more than one of any of the hosts available. The same goes for Lawrence and Maeve.
Lawrence started a new loop before it seemed like he would be available after being killed by The Man in Black, and Maeve was gone from the saloon for what seemed like days. Why was it taking so long to fix her? Or was she just coming back every night and that's why Felix was so appalled?
Considering they're robots, it does seem unlikely they'd only have one when they could have duplicates so there was never one missing while the other was being fixed. If the same two dudes are working on her everyday, they must not have many butchers for the volume of robots in the park.
Let's talk a little bit about Ford. Although he made mention of the urgency he feels coming from The Man in Black betrays the character The Man is trying to play in their world, Ford sure seems like he's being put through the ringer.
His story about his dog chasing the cat seemed to be about the changing hosts seeking freedom, although they'd never know what to do with it if they found it. I think he might be the one surprised at that ending.
Ford's quite worried about Arnold. He pulled in Dolores to see what she remembers and whether Arnold is talking to her still. But however she's doing it, she's manipulating her analytics to look like she's had no contact with him in 25 years. Ford thinks the two of them are the only ones who remember things as they were then, but they're not the only two. There's also The Man in Black.
You used to be beautiful. When this place started, I opened one of you up once, a million little perfect pieces. And then they changed you, made you this sad, little real mess, flesh and bone, just like us. They said it would improve the park experience. But you know why they really did it? It was cheaper. Your humanity is cost effective, so is your suffering.The Man in Black
Or was Ford talking about them being the only two hosts? Sure, we saw a photo of Ford younger. Does that mean he's not a man? Not necessarily.
Dolores was going to help Arnold to destroy Westworld 35 years ago. She was obviously close to Arnold. There is no love lost between Dolores and Ford. The Man in Black somehow thwarted their plan of destruction.
Today he wonders what he'd find if he opened up Robert Ford. Is what Arnold left behind inside Ford? And how could anything be left inside Ford if Ford's a human?
I have no idea. I'm just tossing out thoughts. But the more we know about Ford, the more villainous he becomes, and the more we know about The Man in Black, the less likely he seems the villain in the story 35 years after he assumedly decided to take on the role.
The whole thing with William and Logan was fun to watch. William finally put his foot down on Logan's world of sadism and debauchery. Logan, in turn, decided to bring up in their personal lives, tossing his status as daddy's boy in the ranks of the family business into William's face.
It seems impossible William could go through with a wedding to Logan's sister at this point. But watching Dolores and William run off while Logan was being beat up was quite pleasant.
Speaking of that...William was nearly killed several times. He was beaten, strangled and if all is going well now after the camera rolled, he's being beaten again. Supposedly a human can't be killed, but looks like they can be hurt. And Dolores killed all the people threatening William. She just had to break out of her loop and change out of her blue dress.
William: Dolores, how did you do that?
Dolores: You said people come here to change their lives. I imagined a story where I didn't have to be the damsel.
I think Arnold is at the center of the maze. Will it bring deeper meaning? Caskets are emblazoned with the maze symbol. Will finding the middle just take people back to the butchers? What puzzle pieces are currently missing?
What did you see that I missed? Leave all your thoughts below and let's start chatting!
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.