Westworld: Season 1/ Episode 7 "Trompe L’Oeil" – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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Overview

While most of the plot follows the trajectory you expect, then comes a truly shocking moment.

Review (with Spoilers)

Perhaps for the first time since this show started, I was honestly shocked by something. There was a moment, naturally toward the end, when you realized that a lot of things aren’t what they seem and while it doesn’t change my overall view of the show, it does make me question things. But I try to keep the spoilers nill above the fold so continue on below to know what happens in “Trompe L’Oeil.”

Main Plot (with Commentary)

Dolores

After a week off from Dolores, I must admit her return didn’t leave me feeling she was missed. Her love affair with William seems so dull and even as they approach what is called “unclaimed territory” I must admit a serious lack of interest. For even if this story merges with Teddy’s and the Man in Black, unless the maze hype is really worth it, I fear the bunch of them will be the blemish of this show.

Maeve

With her stats changed you’d think Maeve would have been quite different when she returned to the old west but no. She still heads to the saloon and keeps up appearances, noticing now when she is speaking predictable lines programmed into her. But despite this upgrade, which includes decreased loyalty, upon Clementine being taken she has herself harmed to follow. Leading her to see perhaps one of the few consistent people in her life getting lobotomized. With that, she decides she is done with the old west and like Ava in Ex-Machina, she wants to go top side and be free.

Bernard & Ford

With Elsie missing Bernard is on edge, but that isn’t even the biggest thing to worry about. Teresa and Charlotte hold a meeting showing the potential for violence the hosts have, using Clementine. It seems the rollback was a failure and now upon seeing the same being, especially an abusive one, they will react. In this case, Clementine bashes a man’s head in.

But it isn’t 100% clear whether Teresa staged the incident or it was due to the upgrade. What is known though is that while you could have assumed the eventual war would be between the humans and hosts, it may actually be Ford vs. any who would dare attempt to usurp him. For, you see, Teresa transmitting the data offsite was for the sole purpose of creating a contingency plan. Ford doesn’t like the data leaving Westworld and has thus far forbidden it. However, with his erratic behavior, the board would like for him to retire peacefully if possible and if he doesn’t, they don’t want him destroying everything. Of which, the hosts and storylines aren’t what matter, but the research. As for whether it is the process of making the hosts or maybe whatever is within the maze, it is slightly hard to say.

What is clarified though is that we may have to look at both the humans and hosts a bit more closely. For with the reveal of Bernard being a host, there are many questions. The first being how many hosts are there that Ford has masqueraded as staff, and then if these hosts replaced real human beings? For Ford is working on a new host model and has had Teresa killed. Could we see her come back and now be under Ford’s control? I mean, who is to say the board isn’t partly Ford’s hosts living in the real world? Lest we forget, Ford is a strange man, maybe a host himself, and while Arnold is spoken of as having Ford as his partner, who knows what their relationship was really like? Heck, considering the park is all Ford has, what can he even be threatened with? Especially with every host, conscious or not, at his beck and call with only the whispers of Arnold to fight against him.

Highlights

Excellent Twist

Though I watch this show every week, I do feel like I rarely speak of it as something to maintain loyalty to. Yet, as said in the first episode, it is more so the acting and actors keeping me going than anything else. But what is an actor without a good script? For with the reveal of Bernard being a host comes a bit of a shock to my system though with the amount of control Ford desires, you’d have to expect he would have his own contingency plans in case the board did try to betray him right? After all, the man may not show his ego, but you can tell he enjoys everything and everyone stopping when he walks into a room as if he is the king.

Though what really shall be of interest is how Teresa’s death is handled. For either she will be some blood sacrifice or we may learn that those who get in Ford’s way, and are killed, are perhaps revived as hosts. Thus becoming a sick little joke for Ford to remember his conquest.

Criticism

Dolores isn’t keeping up

The one bad thing about the Ford twist and Maeve going Ex-Machina is it makes it so you can’t settle for Dolores’ nor Teddy’s storyline anymore. As the show ups the ante, they can’t be simple travelers who only are capable of getting your attention when a gun goes off. For that is what it feels like at this point and their human companions don’t help. William is still the dullest character around and him having some pseudo-affair with Dolores isn’t helping either of them. Then with Teddy, who is absent this episode, the Man in Black maybe mysterious, but he isn’t doing or saying anything to keep the intrigue up. At this point, he seems as mad as Ford but with less meaningful interactions to add some depth to his eccentricities.

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