Fans of Westworld have been coming to terms with the fact the next series of the hit show won’t land until sometime in 2018.
But all is not lost, as we’ve been handed a morsel to tide us over in the shape of a trailer for the second season.
And in it, we see the formerly shy and retiring Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) apparently continuing to conduct herself in the manner to which she’s become accustomed – namely taking her destiny into her own hands and blithely, expertly shooting everyone in sight.
Oof. The true meaning of the phrase ‘not taking any prisoners’.
To the pleasant and fitting lyrics of I Gotta Be Me (“I want to live, not merely survive”), we also see Maeve (Thandie Newton) return to the park and survey the bloody fallout seen in the final episode of series one – where she and her fellow robots, built to service the whims of monied parkgoers, have seemingly found free will and turned on their human users.
Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) also makes an appearance, as does the corpse of a tiger (that well-known inhabitant of the Wild West...) and a bloodied Man in Black (Ed Harris), who smiles ever so slightly as the trailer ends.
The first series, based on the 1973 film of the same name by Michael Crichton, reveals a Wild West-themed park populated by extremely lifelike robots (‘hosts’), which react to events in the same way as humans would. Thus, while there are storylines to follow and quests to go on, guests at the park inevitably prefer to enact their darkest fantasies on ‘people’ who can’t fight back instead: hurting, abusing and killing the hosts repeatedly.
As some of the hosts begin to retain memories of their experiences, questions of free will and the true nature of human consciousness are raised.
Newton’s character in particular seemed to play an important role in freeing herself and her fellow robots from the cycle of violence and repair, before it was revealed that her dramatic and bloody escape plan was also programmed into her at some point.
However, the show’s creators, Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, revealed in March that the closing moments of the first series actually saw Maeve make her very first decision – jumping off the train she’d fought her way to and deciding to re-enter the park to find her daughter, despite knowing her remembered relatives were merely part of past storylines.
The show has been a huge hit, raking in millions of viewers and landing 22 Emmy nominations.
In some of the final scenes of the last series, the audience hears Dolores whisper, “I understand now. This world doesn’t belong to them. It belongs to us.”
If this trailer is anything to go by, looks like she’s on the money.
Main image: HBO