The saddest thing about #Westworld Season One coming to a close? The completely twist-free Season Finale which served more as a progression of predictable plot points than as a fitting ending for a TV Show which started out with so much promise. Notable for its astounding Reddit following, HBO's sentient robotic theme park drama focused more on its desire to lead us down a rabbit hole of conspiracy theories than it did on embellishing its characters.
Unfortunately for the Show, however, whereas second guessing what may be going on within a character's mind is a complex nightmare, second guessing the plot may not be as difficult as the writers had initially thought. Week after week, the fans guessed correctly which direction the plot was going to go, ruining any element of surprise which ultimately led to the Finale being a shocker — but for all the wrong reasons.
Gathering together some of the best theories the Westworld fandom created over the Series, here's how the Show should have ended to have really given us the thrilling, surprising Finale we so desperately deserved.
The Maze Was An Elaborate Trap Controlled By Ford
- An Endless Cycle Of Roll-Backs
What would have been better than the twist that all the time Dolores spent trying to get to the centre of the Maze, she was actually just working her way back to Ford who used the Maze to trap those hosts capable of attaining a certain level of sentience? Once they reach the 'centre' of the Maze, i.e. him, he just rolls them back to where they began, making the Maze nothing more than an elaborate safety measure taken by Ford to ensure the eternal safety of the park.
- Rise Oh Great Puppet Master!
This could have been quite feasible given that Ford recreated Arnold and was consequently aware of the bicameral mind maze that he had instilled within some of the hosts and, therefore, he could completely have manipulated it to his own ends. This would have made to a delightfully cruel ending for Dolores, and would have made Ford the wickedly cruel puppet master he embodied so perfectly, and on that note:
Ford Was A Host, Meaning Westworld Was Entirely Created By Robots
- Nolan's Big Claim
Before the Show aired, Grandure, a Redditor wrote the following:
"I'm not scared of a computer passing the turing test... I'm terrified of one that intentionally fails it."
Without missing a beat, Jonathan Nolan, the Shows creator and one of the main writers responded with:
"Boy have we got a show for you!"
- And How He Missed A Trick
However, while Grandure highlights that one of the most fascinating aspects of AI is the ability to purposely deceive their creators, Nolan and co really missed out on a trick when it came to the parks creators.
Few things would have been more fascinating that the idea that "Gods" could quite literally create themselves; that Ford was created by Arnold as a host and he and Bernard ended up creating the entire park together, their intelligence far surpassing that of mere mortals and putting them on the fast track to creating an entirely new master race of sentient, super human machines completely free of human control.
Which could mean that:
Consequently, Felix, Sylvester & All The HQ Staff Are Hosts
- An Entirely Controllable Workforce
If Ford is a host then it would figure that he and Bernard would create a hierarchy of host staff to do all of their bidding. While the one-time material costs would be high per staff member, the fact that you would never have to pay them wages, never have to deal with union strikes and would be able to get them to do exactly what you want at all times would make them a very efficient work force. It would also mean creating a workforce with a very low staff turnover, and you'd probably never have to throw a Christmas party.
- Robotic Hierarchical Structures
It would also explain why Sylvester and Felix were unfathomably helping Maeve escape for little to no reason, making it one of the most under-characterized moments of TV in 2016. Further, we'd get a fascinating insight into how AI would self-organize themselves. The Westworld Universe would suggest that because all hosts are modeled on mankind that they would adhere to integrally social human structures, but it would be a great platform to go and explore how this might begin to adapt and change with time.
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The Man In Black Was Actually Logan
- Whiny William Was Just A Colossal Red Herring
With the Westworld Reddit hive mind guessing that William was in fact the Man in Black from around Episode Three, it would truly have been a stroke of brilliance if all the foreshadowing for this "big reveal" had been a red herring the entire time. Choosing Logan over William could lead the way for a storyline which suggests William dies in the park due to some flicker of sentience within one of the hosts (i.e. Dolores), leaving Logan to become a "black hat" hacker, trying to discover what the Maze is. He believes it's a line of corrupt code which turns the host into (potentially lucrative) killing machines.
- A World Of Human-Host Replicants
This would also open up another fascinating narrative thread that suggests the park's real focus is on creating human-host replicants. It was once theorized (and hoped for) that after Theresa's untimely death she would be recreated as a Host version of herself like Bernard and Ford's family before her, this would have a real and lasting impact on a society of humans in the external world. It could also have tied into the idea of Logan being the Man In Black because, after William died in the park, he could have convinced Ford and Bernard to recreate his dead friend as a host to bring back to the outside world as recompense. This would have created a prototype for the boards expansion into bringing hosts into the real world and therefore perhaps helped them make some real money.