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Monday, May 14, 2018

Westworld 2.4: Questions Pertaining to Immortality



We already knew that the AI technology used to construct hosts could construct a host-like version - an android - of a human being who once was alive.  That, after all, is what Bernard is.  But in Westworld 2.4, we get a poignant and telling exposition of how this figures (or figured) in the life of William, whose older self, apparently obtained through just natural aging (though, who knows), is The Man in Black.

William / The Man Black's father is Delos.  He dies of some incurable illness, but not before his mind is captured (or brain in scanned, or however you'd like to put this) and then imprinted on the AI technology that creates hosts.  Except, we discover that this process can't quite be brought to fruition.  William, who in a great series of scenes pays visits to his father and eventually shows up as The Man in Black, discovers this, and reluctantly concludes that this kind of immortality is unattainable.

But important questions remain:

  • Who kept the android Delos alive in that laboratory, after William already looking like The Man in Black clearly realized it wasn't working?
  • Why did imprinting work with Bernard?  Or did it?  
  • In the first episode, we saw Delores making the same kind of speaking errors as William saw with his android father.   Bernard - presumably the original human Bernard? - saw this, and had the same subtle disappointment on his face as we saw with William.  So ... does this mean the Delores we've come to know is actually based on an earlier, living, human Delores?  Is that the source of her memories?
  • I just realized that Delores and Delos have similar spellings.   Is there some significance in that, or just coincidence?  Is Delores in some way related to Delos?
  • What was the relationship between William and Ford?  I can't recall if and what we saw of them together in the first season, but it didn't seem like much.
But we do know certain things we didn't quite know earlier - or they've come into sharper focus.  There are more than just guests and hosts (which we can define as all humans associated with the park - programmers, administrators, etc).   There are hosts who are copies of deceased humans.

So here's another question: Are there androids who are copies of humans who are still alive?

In view of these questions alone, I'm enjoying this season more than the first season, which even without these questions was pretty enjoyable, to say the least.


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