“The most efficient they are able to do is are living consistent with their code.”
This opinion piece comprises spoilers for Westworld Season 2.
The most important marvel in Westworld Season 1 used to be most probably the revelation that idealistic William and the brutal Guy in Black have been the similar individual, whose reputedly concurrent storylines have been in fact going down many years aside. To stay the name of the game of this twist, Westworld didn’t do a lot to interrogate the older William’s personality in its first season, leaving audience to marvel no longer best how the younger guy Delores cherished may just develop into this sort of monster, but in addition what the Guy in Black’s final endgame could be.
Season 2 tried to right kind that downside, providing flashbacks devoted to William’s existence between his first access into Westworld and the existing day. Unfold throughout 3 separate time classes, they shed some gentle on William’s (d)evolution into the Guy in Black.
After all, the overall breadth of William’s tale (a minimum of because it stands after Season 2) is concurrently traumatic and heartbreaking, as his obsession with the park drives away everybody who ever cared about him and fractures his personal reference to fact. Thru those scenes, in addition to the surprising arrival of his daughter Emily in Westworld, William turns into one thing a lot more difficult than the park’s designated, stereotypical villain.
As an alternative, he turns into its grand tragedy.
William’s infatuation with the park and his fascination with the theory of host awareness all come from an overly human position: A need for a better that means. Whether or not this seek is known as the Maze, the Door or one thing else, it’s a quest to ascribe a bigger function to his existence, to show his obsession into one thing extra than simply cowboy LARP-ing. That seek in the long run drives William to kill his personal kid within the throes of his mania, ultimately so delusional and paranoid that he can now not distinguish the true international from the false.
That’s just about as tragic because it will get.
But, in spite of his tale’s dire undertones, Westworld does no longer spare William’s personality, appearing audience an unflinching depiction of a person at his absolute darkest level. William, because the Guy in Black, is a monster who kills and tortures the hosts with out mercy. He’s brutal, cynical and chilly. However William wasn’t all the time the Guy in Black. At one level, he used to be a type younger guy who didn’t wish to kill random bandits for amusing or sexually harass ladies on the Mariposa. He merely cherished a woman and sought after to avoid wasting her. However that woman became out to be a robotic, and her love became out to be a lie. And that used to be sufficient to modify the whole lot.
William’s lack of Dolores fractured his existence, at a second he used to be already suffering to take care of transparent barriers between the true and the bogus. It in large part drove his fascination with the park, his obsession with host awareness, and his evolution into Westworld’s maximum fearsome visitor. His discovery that the lady he cherished is a number, that her reminiscence may well be reset, that each and every guy who visits Sweetwater would possibly theoretically revel in the similar issues he did together with her launches him into an existential disaster from which he arguably by no means recovers.
By the point the Guy in Black is on his seek for the Door in Season 2, his depravity has pushed his spouse to suicide; his Forge report is categorized irredeemable; and he himself admits his soul is stained with darkness. He’s formally murdered a couple of other people. Subsequently, when Westworld’s post-credits collection jumps ahead to a long term the place William is printed as a number (or some approximation of 1 – a minimum of at that time limit), there’s a definite sense of justice to it. He most probably merits worse. Then again, the truth that his host self will have to relive one of the crucial heartbreaking sequences of his existence again and again provides an advanced wrinkle to this twist.
As a result of in spite of reputedly years of exams, he has but to discover a model of his Westworld adventure that doesn’t lead to his daughter’s dying. Whether or not that’s as a result of he’s nonetheless rejecting his personal culpability in his Emily’s homicide or as a result of Forge!Logan is correct and human beings simply can’t break out their programming is unclear. Both or each appear conceivable. Then again, the theory that there’s a model of his loop by which Emily survives additionally implies there’s a model the place William makes other, ostensibly higher, alternatives. And is in all probability a special guy. And Westworld without a doubt means that – a minimum of on this example – there’s some approach to trade issues, even though best via power of sheer will.
The concept that William is trapped in a hellish Sisyphean loop of his personal making as a result of he can’t forestall committing his worst mistake time and again is each becoming and horrible. (Actually, it completely encapsulates Westworld’s talent to give this personality sympathetically whilst no longer asking its target audience to forgive or overlook his crimes.) Plus, there’s some relaxing irony in the truth that William no longer best turns into a number himself finally, but in addition turns out sure by way of a an identical loss of actual company. Then again, since we’ve spent two seasons exploring concepts of loose will, this is not going to be the case eternally. “No device can inform me who I’m,” he nonetheless insists, it sounds as if misguidedly, after his untold hundredth shuttle during the park leads to tragedy.
Possibly there actually isn’t some way again for William after the whole lot he’s performed. Black hats don’t unexpectedly develop into white once more, in any case. But, we’ve noticed that William has, sometimes, selected the sunshine. When the Guy in Black returns to Las Mudas with Lawrence in Season 2, their 2nd shuttle there performs out relatively another way. When Craddock’s males kill and torture a couple of hosts, together with Lawrence’s circle of relatives, William rescues everybody in a hail of gunfire after recalling the instant of Juliet’s suicide. The significance of this twist is made particular once we understand that we’ve noticed this precise scene ahead of. Best, that first time, the Guy in Black stuffed the position Craddock does now, callously threatening Lawrence’s spouse and mocking his circle of relatives’s ache. Sure, proper all the way down to the similar bodily positions and features. So, for lack of a higher word, he breaks a loop on this second. And that has to subject. One just right deed, in fact, can’t erase an entire life of errors. Nevertheless it’s a get started.
The park, Westworld many times tells us, presentations us an individual as they really are. And we’ve without a doubt noticed the worst of William over the process the display’s two seasons. However he used to be as soon as able to one thing extra, and one of the most tragedies of his personality is his assumption that the darkness in his soul is each one thing he bears no accountability for, and that he can’t trade. This can be a cop-out, in fact – some way for William to shirk accountability for his horrible habits each within the park and out of doors of it. However as we see in “The Riddle of the Sphinx,” that doesn’t should be the case. The tragedy of William’s existence is that he refuses to simply accept the item he maximum sought after to provide the hosts: The facility to make a decision for himself the person he’ll develop into.
Possibly he’ll get it proper subsequent time. We’ll have to peer in Season three.
For extra on Westworld, take a look at our Season 2 finale assessment, explainer at the Guy in Black’s giant post-credits twist, and the whole lot we learn about Season three to this point.
The place do you assume William’s tale will cross in Season three and past? Percentage your theories within the feedback.