Westworld

What’s it about?

Westworld is a Western-themed amusement park with android residents where visitors can live out their innermost fantasies, whether simple escapism or something darker and more niche. “They’re just machines, right..?”

Starring

Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, Anthony Hopkins, Jeffrey Wright, Ed Harris, James Marsden, Jimmi Simpson, Ben Barnes, Sidse Babett Knudsen, Rodrigo Santoro, Angela Sarafyan, Tessa Thompson, Simon Quarterman, Shannon Woodward

An Introduction to Westworld

Westworld is a massive and impressive amusement park created by Delos, a company with huge funds and boasting cutting-edge technological innovation, particularly in the field of android development. The park is inhabited by life-like android residents, known as “hosts”, while the human visitors are known as “guests”. It’s not a cheap place to visit, but guests are guaranteed an experience unlike any other.

Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins) is the original founder and current Creative Director of Westworld. His skill and vision ensure that the whole experience is always evolving; as indeed are the androids. Ford’s developments with artificial intelligence in particular are remarkable, and he regularly uploads fresh, behavioral ‘tweaks’ to the hosts to make them more human-like. The upgrades are known as “reveries”.

Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood) is a sweet-natured, all-American country gal. Every morning she awakes with a sunny disposition and an optimistic outlook on the forthcoming day. Unknown to Dolores, she is a host in Westworld. Every day begins like this, as it is the start of her “loop” – a set of programmed circumstances that form the outline of her daily behavior. All the subsequent events of the day will be erased in time for the following morning.

And that’s enough to start with… this show is a journey of discovery!

Summary

Firstly, you don’t need to see Michael Crichton’s classic 1973 film of the same name to enjoy or understand this show. Secondly, if you have seen the film and are wondering why you should bother watching a TV adaptation, rest assured that this is something fresh. HBO have developed a rather special show here, and it operates on a different level to the film. Actually, many different levels.

Westworld is a show to really relish; high standards abound on every level, particularly on the storytelling and acting fronts. Beautifully subtle performances are caught perfectly, and the rich environments are not only well realised, they regularly contain thought-provoking elements. Red Herrings or Easter Eggs? Keep watching…

Westworld has inspired a level of discussion and plot speculation normally reserved for more established shows such as Game Of Thrones, The Walking Dead or Mr Robot. From the water-cooler to online forums, fans have been sharing observations, theories and predictions with a level of enthusiasm only reserved for shows that have truly earnt it. And this show gives the viewer so much goodness to consider!

Clearly, a lot of time and painstaking care has gone into the Westworld story. The show treats its viewers as smart adults and offers much satisfaction if you’re paying attention. Mysteries are spun and questions regularly pondered and vitally, some reveals are also provided in every episode. That’s how to keep people hooked! The lessons have been learned from shows such as Lost, which many felt heaped mystery upon mystery without giving enough back.

HBO were aiming for Game Of Thrones-level interest with Westworld, and it surely deserves that. With one of the best debut seasons in TV drama history, Westworld is highly worthy of your binge-watching time. In fact, you’re quite likely to want to pore over season one again once you’ve finished it, so allow some additional “me time” for that. Enjoy the ride!

“Some people choose to see the ugliness in this world, the disarray. I choose to see the beauty. To believe there is an order to our days. A purpose.” – Dolores

Check out the Season 1 Trailer here:

Series Information

Originally Transmitted: 2016-

Original Network: HBO

Number of Complete Seasons: 1

Total Number of Episodes: 10

Minimum Episode Length: 57 minutes

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