It seems that HBO has found its next must-watch series. After pulling in 3.3 million viewers — compared to the 2.3 million and 2.2 million viewers of True Detective and Game of Thrones' premieres, respectively — with its premiere episode, Westworld has all the makings of a bona fide TV hit. This is a huge win for HBO, as it is the kind of show that not only brings in viewers, but like GoT, it causes those viewers to speculate about the series and build theories to try and solve the many mysteries that it holds. With over 3 million people rapt by the series, fans tuning into the first season may wonder how many episodes are in Westworld and therefore how many more mysteries we'll have to unravel.
Any Game of Thrones fans who are swapping in their fantasy leanings for science fiction will be familiar with this new series' structure. The first season of Westworld will have 10 episodes, and if it's anything like HBO's other major Sunday night series, then that won't be changing any time soon. There's still a lot of mystery roaming through Westworld and unlike the narratives constructed by the programmers of the theme park, there's no telling where this story will go. Here's what to expect from the remaining nine episodes of Westworld Season 1.
The big conflict set up in the pilot is that things are starting to go wrong in Westworld. The robots that make up the townsfolk, or "hosts," are acting up. They've been straying from their narratives, questioning their own nature, and even killing (although the only creature to die at the hand of a host so far is a fly, more could be on the way). By the end of the season, expect a lot more to go wrong in Westworld — there's only a fine line between "glitch" and "unmitigated disaster."
For me, the biggest non-robot question coming out of the premiere episode is "what is the deal with the man in black?" A human guest who has been visiting the park for 30 years, killing the good guys, and assaulting women, now seeks to find some kind of deeper meaning in the game and is scalping the robo-residents? This seems to be a bad, bad man, and if the first episode featured him cutting off the top of someone's head, it's only going to get bloodier from here.
More Handsome Robots
Westworld has got some really handsome robots. Expect more swooning within the show courtesy of James Marsden's Teddy and Rodrigo Santoro's Hector Escaton.
Of all the possibilities for Westworld's future, this is the most exciting to me. One of the problems the hosts seem to be having is that some of them are not only going "off-narrative," but their current models are starting to be infected by former versions of themselves as evidenced by Dolores' father. While this may not have a large effect on newer hosts, Dolores is the oldest host in the park, meaning that she is the one most likely to break away from what the programmers want her to be. If she ever remembers what the park has been doing to her for so many years, it's likely she'll be seeking some cold-blooded revenge.
There's a lot going on in Westworld, but not not a bit of it is out of place. The series has built an incredibly strong foundation in its pilot and I, for one, can't wait to see where it takes the rest of its 10-episode first season.