What Comes Next
"I am in a dream. I do not know when it began or whose dream it was. I know only that I slept a long time, and then, one day I woke." — Dolores, "Westworld"
The first season of "Westworld" ended last night with a bang. It was easily one of the most fascinating and creative shows on TV, and it delivered an epic finale that answered a lot of questions — and posed even more.
I also got to see the original film for the first time yesterday, which got me to thinking. Where is this show headed?
"Westworld" the movie, released in 1973, was quintessential Michael Crichton, who wrote and directed it. He always did stories on the forefront of technology, but he was very cautious. As someone who loves "Jurassic Park," you could see the germ of that idea in the bones of the film.
The show has diverged a bit. It retains the basic idea and some of the caution about technology, but it's been more interested in what it means to be alive. What does it mean to be conscious. What does it mean to be a person — not human — but a person.
The finale came down on the side of the argument that these hosts are alive. They are people. Not human, but people. And the revolution has begun. And while it seemed like Dr. Ford (Anthony Hopkins) was meaning to keep them oppressed, really, he was planning to set them free all along.
It was a fascinating turn of events. It answered plenty of questions. And now we have at least an 18-month wait before we discover what will become of this world. Here's my top three questions for season two:
* How many other worlds are there? In the film, there's three worlds. In the show, we've only seen Westworld. But we got hints in the finale that there is at least one other world. And the question becomes, have those worlds awoken as well?
* What is the premise of season two? Creator Jonathan Nolan has said that each season will be a self-contained story, so is season two going to be an all-out war between the hosts and people?
* Who will return? Who died in the finale? Who will make a reappearance? There's plenty of questions surrounding who will be part of the narrative moving forward.