It's been a long wait, but HBO just dropped a full trailer for the third season of Westworld, HBO's Emmy-award winning science fiction series. And it looks like we're in for another wild, mind-bending ride through multiple dystopian timelines.
(Warning: major spoilers for the first two seasons of Westworld below.)
The titular Westworld is one of six immersive theme parks owned and operated by a company called Delos Inc. The park is populated with a "cast" of very human-looking androids, called hosts. The park's well-heeled visitors can pretty much do whatever they like to the hosts and don't generally view the hosts as anything more than unfeeling props in their private dramas. But the hosts' creator/co-founder and park director of Westworld, Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins), "awakens" a host named Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) to true sentience. S1 concluded with a bloody massacre, as the reprogrammed hosts rise up to take revenge on the guests.
S2 had an even more convoluted plot spanning multiple timelines. Dolores begins recruiting other hosts to fight off Delos security forces while searching for the door to the real world, intent on taking revenge by wiping out the human race. Ars' own Nathan Matisse particularly praised S2's seventh episode, "Les Écorchés"—in which the hosts prevail against the humans in yet another bloody massacre at the Mesa—especially its focus on Hopkins' misanthropic Ford:
The episode brings into further focus Ford's pseudo-nihilistic supervillain thesis: that humanity, as a product of nothing more than evolution, is inherently valueless. We are crude hunks of self-animating meat—obstacles standing in the way of the hosts' path to true self-actualization. It's time for us to die and for the hosts to inherit the Earth, because in Ford's mind, only a true "original work" has worth. The hosts, as created beings, are such a work.
In the S2 finale, Dolores leads her fellow hosts to the Forge, a kind of central database, and several Hosts upload their minds into a digital world known as "the Sublime." Dolores then transfers their minds to a safer location. Ultimately, three of the Hosts are shown entering the real world in the central timeline: Dolores, Bernard (Jeffrey Wright), and a rebuilt host version of former Delos executive Charlotte Hale (Tessa Thompson).