Dolores goes further out of her comfort zone in the Oct. 30 episode of ‘Westworld,’ as she, William and Logan reach the town of Pariah and meet a man who sends them on a dangerous mission. Meanwhile, the Man in Black has an important conversation on his hunt for The Maze.
“Contrapasso.” It’s a Latin word that is loaded with meaning, especially when used as the title of an episode of a J.J. Abrams show. And it’s a word that we need to define before deep diving into this week’s episode of Westworld if we ever hope to understand what’s going on. So what does it mean? To suffer the opposite, and it refers directly to the punishment of the poor souls trapped in Dante’s Inferno, who were tortured with a process either resembling or contrasting with the sin that got them there. Now, that’s gonna apply to this episode in multiple ways, but the biggest one is probably for the audience, who will be tortured with information overload for the sin of thinking they have any idea of what’s going on.
When we first catch up with Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood), William (Jimmi Simpson) and Logan (Ben Barnes) they are about to enter Pariah, the town that Logan was itching to get to at the end of the last episode as it’s supposed to open up a whole new set of options in the game. As the group enters the city (which is full of people doing naughty things in public) they come across an army of Confederate soldiers who Logan desperately wants to join. But in order to do so, they must first meet with El Lazo, a man of mystery who runs this town. That night Dolores and William are walking and talking when he makes an offhand remark about the “real world” which Dolores actually picks up on, much to his surprise. Androids aren’t supposed to know that! But before they can get into that, Dolores spies HERSELF in a parade of people. She tries to catch her, but instead faints and the next thing we know she’s wide awake and back in the lab in a conversation with Dr. Ford (Anthony Hopkins) about Arnold.
We get some major scoop here on how a) Arnold made Dolores, b) Dolores was asked by Arnold to help him destroy the park, c) she didn’t do it and d) Ford does not consider himself friends with Dolores AT ALL. Um, that was an overdose of info, don’t you think? After that conversation wraps up, with Dolores swearing she hasn’t spoken to Arnold in about 35 years, Ford exits, the lights dim and Dolores talks to someone we can’t see, saying “He doesn’t know. I didn’t tell him anything.” Okay, so, we can all agree she was somehow talking to Arnold, or thinks she was talking to Arnold. Right? Right.
We get back to Dolores’ storyline with William, which I’m going to continue to think is in a different timeline than what is going on in the lab, and what is going on with the Man in Black (Ed Harris). Why? Well, when we meet El Lazo, he’s actually played by the same actor as Lawrence (Clifton Collins Jr). You know, Lawrence. The guy who the Man in Black (from here on referred to as, MIB)has been dragging all over Westworld the past few episodes while he looks for The Maze. Now, it’s just not possible he could be both MIB’s prisoner and the head honcho in this town at the same exact time, so we have official confirmation that there are, at the very least, two timelines going in this show. Glad we cleared that up so we can start to worry about other things, like how Dolores, Logan and William are supposed to rob a stagecoach full of nitroglycerin from some Union soldiers at the request of El Lazo, who says that’s what they need to do to get in with the Confederates.
They end up doing it successfully (with Dolores finally making a wardrobe change from her blue dress to a real cowgirl outfit), but in the process William has to shoot an unarmed man. Sad! That night they are celebrating returning with the nitro at El Lazo’s place, when William and Logan get into a fight, and Dolores wanders off. She comes across a fortune teller who she pulls a card from, which happens to have a picture of a maze on it. When she looks up the fortune teller has turned into herself and is telling her to get a move on finding this maze, which of course makes Dolores think she’s insane. She runs back to find William and on the way sees that El Lazo and his group are stealing the nitro and pumping it into body of one of their men who died while assisting in the stagecoach robbery. They’ve been played! Dolores finds William to tell him just that, and they share a passionate kiss after deciding they need to escape together. Who else was shipping these two?
Meanwhile, Logan is hanging with the Confederates, when they discover that the nitro has been replaced with tequila and blame Logan for the betrayal. As he’s being handcuffed and taken prisoner, William and Dolores run by. But William decides that he’s no longer Mr. Nice Guy and he and Dolores take off, leaving poor Logan behind. They make it on to a train headed out of town, but El Lazo happens to be catching that same ride with the dead body filled with nitro in a casket. They all decide to make peace and settle in for the trip, with El Lazo introducing himself as Lawrence. Dolores notices that the casket has a map of The Maze imprinted on the front, and as she sees it she says “I’m coming.” Chills.
Back in the lab, a technician who repairs the Hosts has been working to try and bring a bird android from inside Westworld back to life. His partner screams at him for stealing the bird and he puts it away, and spends the rest of the episode patching up Maeve (Thandie Newton) until he finally gets time to bring the bird back. But, just as he’s celebrating his achievement, Maeve wakes up and tells him they need to talk. Maeve, you may actually be beating Dolores at this whole becoming self-aware thing.
And, last but not least, the tale of MIB continues. Now that we are sure MIB is rolling in a different time line than Dolores (and that they are both hunting for The Maze) it is interesting to see how he interacts with Lawrence, a.k.a. El Lazo. After they rescued Teddy (James Marsden) from bleeding to death in last week’s episode when he was injured by his enemy Wyatt’s men, he’s not looking so hot. But, the MIB develops a plan to get him back on track, and that includes killing Lawrence and using his blood to give Teddy a transfusion.
The MIB gives Teddy a reason to continue after Wyatt, lying to him about Dolores having been captured by the bad guy, and the two get going. They enter a saloon, and as they sit down to drink, Dr. Ford pulls up a chair. That’s right, Ford is in the park and he’s sitting across from MIB. What’s more, they actually seem to know each other pretty well. They have a deep chat about how MIB thinks of himself as the villain the park is missing, how Ford recently added Wyatt to the game, and how MIB thinks there is a deeper meaning at work in the park that Ford is just not copping to. Then, MIB reveals he knew Arnold, saying that the creator almost destroyed the park, but thanks to MIB, he didn’t. And with that piece of info, plus the timeline theory confirmation, we’re gonna put a big circle around the “William is the Man in Black” theory. Cause, at this point, it’s becoming harder and harder not to believe it.
HollywoodLifers, do you agree that there are multiple timelines in Westworld? Let us know below!