Westworld left Maeve with Engerraund Serac and returned to the arc of Dolores this week, balancing her developing relationship with Caleb along with the saga of Charlotte Hale 2.0. Once again, there aren’t quite as many questions packed into every episode as there were last season, which was a year built on trickery, but we still have a few big ones at the end of “The Absence of Field.”
Who is inside Charlotte Hale?
This is the question driving this episode, and arguably the first part of the entire season. “Charlotte” wakes up in Dolores’s company and seems surprised to be in the skin of someone who “tried to kill all of us.” She clearly recognizes Dolores, knows a lot about Delos, and even knows who Hale is in the grand scheme of things. She needs to be someone smart enough that Dolores would trust her in such a key role and someone with a past with Hale. She also needs to be someone comfortable enough to spoon with Dolores but also make out with her ex-husband.
So who does that lead us to? Teddy is a common theory on message boards, but he was sent to the Valley Beyond, and it would take some real plot gymnastics to reverse that. Some people like the idea of Angela, and that makes some sense — she’s smart enough and driven enough to pretend to be Charlotte. Clementine is a viable candidate, but could she really fake it as Charlotte? The truth is it could be anybody. Some have even suggested Peter Abernathy or Maeve’s daughter, both of which would be ridiculous. Another idea that’s so crazy it would actually be kind of awesome: Dolores took the data of Dr. Robert Ford and implanted it in Hale. After all, he’s smart enough and knows the entire system. And there would be something epic about Dolores’s creator being a part of the final battle in some way. Still, Hale didn’t really try to kill Ford, so that doesn’t make a ton of sense.
Who else did Dolores break out of Westworld?
It’s been a question since the end of season two, but it’s still not completely answered. We know she took out Bernard and put him in another Bernard body, setting him loose in a way that still feels suspicious. She put another pearl in Charlotte, detailed in this episode. She might have put someone else in Connells (see below). So who else did she break out and what does she plan to do with them? Again, people want it to be Teddy, and that’s certainly possible. Angela, Clementine, even Akecheta feel like options. What about William? We don’t know who else Dolores is hiding in those little balls, or what she plans to do with them. And that’s the way the writers like it right now.
Did Dolores put a pearl of someone we know in Connells?
We saw Dolores working more with Liam Dempsey’s fixer this episode, and it leads to a question that really comes from the end of episode one. We know from that episode’s climax that this is a host version of Martin Connells, but is it a familiar face? One of the pearls that Dolores absconded with? Could that be Clementine or Angela infiltrating Incite in the form of a great Scottish character actor? Again, some people think it’s Teddy, once again playing muscle for Dolores. Everyone just really wants Teddy back.
What don’t we know about Caleb?
The plot of this week’s Westworld centers on how Serac’s company has been collecting detailed private data about every human experience for years, but does anyone still feel like they don’t fully trust Caleb’s back story? You know how Dolores could have known all the details about the day Caleb’s mother left? If Sizemore wrote the back story for a host version of him. The traumatic “worst day of my life” feels like a common thread in host back stories. And the writers are clearly playing with us in every scene with Caleb’s mother, who looks at him and says, “I want my son back.” Is it just dementia, or a hint that this is not really her biological son?
Have we seen Rehoboam’s “Mirror World”?
Dolores tells Caleb that Serac is mapping every human experience to create a mirror world of our own. Wait a minute here. The writers of a show that’s constantly playing with perception just introduced a concept of a world that looks exactly like a normal one but isn’t? Have we already visited that world? And will we know it instantly when we do?
How did Serac find out about Dolores?
The final scene of “The Absence of Field” is another moment in which Serac explains the importance of Dolores to the upcoming war, this time to Charlotte 2.0, who we also learn has been working for him this entire time. Serac said something similar to Maeve at the end of the second episode, and we didn’t really ask then, how does he know so much about Dolores? Is someone from the Dolores side of the operation feeding him information? Who? Or does Dolores want him to find her?
Seriously, where’s William?
Ed Harris is in this season, right?!?!?