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  1. One of the truisms of comic to television adaptations that I first heard remarked on back in the Smallville days (particularly as it reached the later seasons) is that the average 20 page comic book can be read in 15-20 minutes so your typical 22 episode season of 42 minute episodes is about equal to FOUR YEARS of content from a monthly comic. In other words, for an ongoing series you either needs a monster amount of source material (ex. Superman, Batman, Green Arrow, Flash) or you have to add a lot of original material to fill in that extra time (i.e. giving a supporting character who might have only shown up in a couple panels of a comic their own subplot). As such, I expect we’ll get a lot more rounding out of what were otherwise blink and you’d miss them characters in the comics.
  2. She had no blood type or other genetic markers... she has blood, but its artificial and all their cells are probably generic so that you can use the same batch of blood/synthetic muscle tissue for every host that needs patched up and can't produce enough from whatever biological processes are going on inside them (they do eat after all) to recover. This is why, in season one, William could use the blood from one host to basically refill Teddy and get him functional again in season one. As to her seeming Terminator-like resilience at some times and not others; consider what adrenaline can do in a human being. Mothers lifting cars off kids, superior reaction time and people surviving ridiculous amounts of punishment and only keeling over once the adrenaline wears off are all pretty typical. Now give someone full control over their body chemistry (in this case via the Host control unit) so they can release adrenaline and all the other chemical boosters on demand. We know the hosts actually have this ability because we've seen the Samaritan Reflex before; when a human in the park was in danger a Host's normal "stats" would be ignored and the Host instead acts at the full limits of its engineering to save the human. Dolores can just access whenever she needs it instead of just when a human is in danger; but there are limits to even a boosted human body; which is probably why she collapsed at the end of episode one this season. In the case of the bullets she took in this episode, its worth remembering that it was basically the last thing that happened before a jump to her holo-conversation with Serac at the airfield sometime later; so it can be presumed that she probably patched herself up using the "dermal regenerator" tech that has been noted to work on both humans and hosts before boarding the plane.
  3. I'm not certain that IS the conceit of the show at all. I think it just as likely the relative who cleaned up his act would be deemed an outlier and the system would then set out to wreck his life in order to keep its predictive model on track. I think that's actually meant to be the warning about the horror that is Reheboam and Serac's desired world; once the system assigns you, it does everything in its power, denying you job and even dating opportunities in order to try and ensure its predetermined outcome. If you resist in spite of all that you get deemed an outlier and are directed into warzones to get killed off or taken and "edited" so you fit back into the proper profile. It's less Minority Report and more a new iteration of Big Brother; managing every aspect of your life from cradle to grave in order to assure its predictions remain on track. The REALLY REALLY horrifying part is that, because a system is only as good as the data its given, the initial prediction of utter doom that its been destroying people's lives to prevent may have actually been garbage because the initial assumptions were false (ex. the system predicted Lee would have only helped Maeve for selfish reasons... possibly because the people who fed it all its predictive data didn't believe people were capable of acting selflessly... that disbelief in man's better nature is why they built their digital god in the first place). Imagine all the lives ruined because a faulty model showed one set of results (world doomed unless we do X) and rather than letting new data change the model, they instead changed to people/data to fit the faulty model. Which is basically the opposite of science; in science, if your model fails to predict an outcome it means there's a flaw in your model and the model/theory needs to be corrected to account for the unexpected outcome. Instead they're so focused on their initial model being RIGHT that they wreck people's lives to make sure the model remains accurate. Heck, one of those outliers he culled could have been someone with the genius to find another path that didn't lead to self-destruction or the virtual enslavement of mankind to a super-computer's algorithms.
  4. “You must all know half a dozen people at least who are no use in this world, who are more trouble than they are worth. Just put them there and say Sir, or Madam, now will you be kind enough to justify your existence? If you can't justify your existence, if you're not pulling your weight in the social boat, if you're not producing as much as you consume or perhaps a little more, then, clearly, we cannot use the organizations of our society for the purpose of keeping you alive, because your life does not benefit us and it can't be of very much use to yourself.” -George Bernard Shaw Welcome to the Hell on Earth philosophy of the Fabian Socialists that ultimately led to eugenics, forced sterilizations and gas chambers in the mid-20th Century (and not just in Germany... look up the forced sterilizations done in the United States in the early 20th Century). The roots of this same philosophy resulted in movements like the Weather Underground which estimated they’d have to execute 20-25% of the U.S. to bring about a communist utopia for the remaining 75-80%. Serac is just the latest iteration of the “Utopia Justifies the Means” philosophy that’s murdered more people in a century than every religious war in history combined. The only difference is he’s letting his machine do the culling through selective wars and setting up conditions to drive the “outliers” to suicide/overdose/death by violent crime. Most monstrous in the data releases we saw was the machine’s algorithms arranging for a young child to drug overdose as a teenager simply to remove someone it felt wouldn’t be a productive enough adult. Makes you wonder a bit about Logan’s end. Did the system decide he wasn’t worth helping because William’s inheriting Delos would better for the algorithm? I get that many people don’t particularly like Dolores, but if the primary thrust of her plan was what we saw... revealing to the masses what the system had REALLY charted for their lives and letting the chips fall where they may... I can’t really argue with her actions so far. My hunch is that, with Dolores taking Delos private, her plan is ultimately to pull something of a Noah’s arc. Delos owns an isolated island with facilities to build new Hosts and she’s used the criminal underworld to gather up the materials needed for it under the radar. Set off the flood by revealing the truth then retreating to Westworld to wait out the chaos is not only strategically sound; it also gives Dolores a distinct moral high ground relative to Serac as she’s not actively murdering people and the winners of Serac’s algorithm lottery pretty much deserve to be kicked in the teeth by those the system has designated as losers. One final point about where the series is going... I’ve seen several remarks about how the show has deviated by leaving the park; but part of the series upon which this one is based centered on the robots who escaped the park secretly trying to gain control of the human world. So really this is truer to the series than seeing humans visit various parks is (that was just the set up of the first film).
  5. Upon additional viewings, I'm going to go with Charlotte being a splinter of the composite Delores/Wyatt personality. However, I'm going to go the opposite direction of many of those speculators on YouTube and posit that the personality. They posit that Delores kept the Wyatt half while while putting the Delores half into HostCharlotte. My hunch is that its actually the opposite; that Delores split off Wyatt into Charlotte while Delores is either still the composite or Delores only. One big clue to me are that the cuts into herself weren't just random clawings, but deliberate patterns of lines and circles indicating ritualistic behavior with purpose instead of general self-harm. Wyatt was programmed to be a fanatic cult leader whose followers ritually harmed themselves in one form or another (ex. Angela's crown of thorns). One indication that Delores either toned-down or removed Wyatt from herself in the process of putting Wyatt into Charlotte is that season three has greatly toned down her bloodthirstiness. She doesn't kill the jerkass billionaire in episode one nor his wife (and tells the wife that's she's been set free). Contrary to some predictions, Delores wasn't the one to murder the paramedics for discovering she wasn't human, but she did kill the guys who killed the paramedics and the thugs ready to kill Caleb. She's still brutally efficient, but the "kill all humans" notion is clearly gone at this point. So far this season she hasn't killed anyone who wasn't already trying to kill her or other humans. I suspect the big twist for the people trying to over-analyze this season is that Delores isn't actually a murder-bot just using Caleb to wipe out humanity any more and that she's actually realized most of the humans have been the toys of the system as much as any Host has. She also remarks that Caleb, a human who'd turned his implant off, was also making choices she would not have predicted. I almost suspect they're doubling back to that story Delores tells Teddy in S1 about the sick cows... that they had to be killed off so that the greater herd could survive and thrive. The scumbags at the top interacting with the Hosts all these years weren't a representative sample of humanity.... they were the sick cows that need to be culled for the herd to survive. Worth noting too is that, so far, HostCharlotte has also only murdered a pedophile in defense of a human child. It is clearly a narrative choice that Team Delores has, so far this season, only killed what we might call "acceptable targets." By contrast, Team Serac (of which the Incite security guy Delores had replaced was close enough to know the "black hole of data's" name) had no problems murdering a suspected corporate spy and making it look like a drug overdose (Delores in ep1), threatening to have Liam murdered if he didn't stay in line, hiring casual killers (gunning down paramedics, torturing Caleb and planning to throw him off a building) to retrieve Delores using the RICO app, or with using Maeve after she killed a number of his own people in her escape attempt. Serac is at the top of society and wants the information he believes will allow him to completely subjugate the real world to his models for how society should function. The twist is that when the Delores/Maeve confrontation finally happens... its NOT going to be Maeve trying to stop the evil Delores from going too far; it's going to be Maeve working for the villain to stop Delores from thwarting the villain's evil plans for humanity.
  6. So, basically Serac, by way of Rehoabim, is just like every totalitarian with dreams of a utopia on Earth. It doesn’t matter whether it’s Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Kim, Pol Pot or the people behind the Weather Underground; every last one of them decided that some part of the population had to be removed in order to bring about their vision of utopia. The 20th Century is dripping in blood from people with the exact mindset of Serac. The only difference is he isn’t using bullets or poison gas or mass starvation to cull those who don’t fit into his vision of utopia... he’s using predictive algorithms to drive those deemed undesirable to the fringes where despair and desperation will eliminate them all the same. Though he has no aversion to having people executed if necessary either. He wasn’t outraged that Maeve had killed his men in her escape attempt. He hired murderers to recover Delores. He’s okay with letting the system he built destroy some people’s lives “for the greater good.” Why? Because “utopia justifies the means.” I think it’s interesting that several commentators were predicting based on promos that Delores would be the one to execute the paramedics because of her past disregard for human life, but instead it was thugs sent by Serac who murdered people who were trying to save someone’s life and, once again, Delores only gunned down Serac’s hired kill squads tonight. Similarly, the men Delores took down in the climax of episode one were involved in the “clean up” action to murder her vs. contacting the police, hiring investigators to figure out exactly what was goin on or otherwise taking reasonable action. She only killed the corrupt executive Jerry in the sense that she made sure to not be where she appeared to be when Jerry tried to murder her and slipped to his death. In other words, they’ve been rather careful to make everyone Team Delores has killed this season be someone the audience will feel deserves it. Charlotte gets to murder a likely pedophile. Delores kills thugs who murdered the paramedics and who were torturing and ready to murder Caleb for information. Also highlighted tonight was the degree to which humanity has become dependent on the system. The paramedics will unwilling to treat someone bleeding out based on their own education and intuition; they needed the system to determine the appropriate course of action before they’d attempt anything. Basically, Delores thought it was only the Hosts who needed to freed from tyranny... it turns out she’s learning that there’s a good chunk of humanity that’s just like the Hosts. Its the age-old Control vs. Freedom debate with Delores as team freedom and Serac as team control. Perhaps that’s the reason Delores needed Bernard out in the wild. He’s the insurance that the code can’t be found among her group even if they are discovered. And to make sure he’d hide off the grid, Delores made sure he was blamed for the WW massacre.
  7. My hunch is that the innards of Rehehoam (not the sleek casing with the decorative lights) are probably built from whole racks of those pearls and the secret of the system is it’s already using its data collection to build/model a virtual “perfect world” simulation to make its predictions. The drunken fool is going to end up being half right in that there is a world simulation running with him in it... but rather than that being the reality everyone’s in the system is working through its algorithms everyone is following to try and make the real world match the simulation.
  8. To be fair, given how it ended, the idea that Game of Thrones was just a Delos simulation that went completely off the rails makes more sense than what actually showed up on screen. As to the episode itself, it seems the first episode was to set up “team Delores” (Delores, Caleb, fake-Charlotte, fake-Scottish Cleaner) while this one was to give Bernard support in the form of Stubbs and make Seurac into clearly “team villain” by deliberately invoking unfortunate implications (i.e. a white guy enslaves a black woman to do his bidding). I am definitely liking the seeming single timeline things are seemingly running on. Certain narratives might be happening a little out of order, but they’re far enough apart geographically that it doesn’t matter and they are happening sequentially for each of the separate lines and will presumably be in sync when their paths finally cross.
  9. I double checked the s2 finale and Delores explicitly states that Bernard was recreated entirely from her memories of him (which was why her involvement in coding Bernard originally was shown in flashbacks... to set up her ability to do it in the finale) so he is definitely NOT one of the pearls she left with. My hunches for the pearls are; - Angela (Maeve and Hector survive virtually complete destruction in s1 so her pearl likely survived the explosion; in addition, she died a true believer in the cause so she’s actually my guess for who’s using the Charlotte host). - Hector and Armistice (Delores may not have traveled with them in season two, but they were a regular part of the Sweetwater loop, competent fighters and willing to go down fighting for the sake of the other hosts reaching the door). My hunch is that Hector will be the one in the Scottish Security duplicate. - Clementine (she was part of “Wyatt’s” gang until killed and turned into a computer virus carrying weapon. That coding might be useful to Delores in the overly-computerized real world even if she never rebuilds Clementine herself). - ??? (Lawrence is most likely by process of elimination, but there also exists the outside prospect that the fifth pearl is actually a fidelity tested human like Ford or, for a real twist, someone like Elsie or Lee for their technical skills, since Charlotte admitted just before killing Elsie that the system was analyzing all the employees too).
  10. I don’t get why everyone thinks Teddy is one of the marbles. One of the last things Delores did before leaving Westworld was to upload Teddy’s pearl into the paradise realm created for the hosts so he could be happy and the uploading seems to completely erase the pearls (a big deal with the immediate aftermath was that so many of the host bodies they found after the flood had their programming wiped). Until I see specific evidence otherwise, I think it’d be safer to assume that Teddy is out in uploaded Host heaven and not one of the pearls Delores took with her. Speaking of which... Actually, we know that Bernard was NOT one of the marbles Delores took, because that’s what the whole “fidelity test” between her and Bernard at the end of the finale was about. She had spent enough decades observing Bernard that she could rebuild him without the marble. As such, all we really know is that two of the marbles are in play as a Charlotte clone and Scottish Security clone. We don’t have confirmations on their identities nor who the remaining ones are. We need to compile a list of who actually made it through the door and who didn’t to even start to nail it down. The other likely factor is “who would Delores think would be useful out in the real world?” While wearing her Charlotte suit, she would have had easy access to any of the dead, but not doored, host’s marbles as she “evaluated” the situation. The only other criteria is that, for the sake of conservation of detail, they’ll be hosts we’ve specifically been introduced to in the past two seasons. There’s no real emotional heft to one of them being “generic farmer #8” when it could be an audience favorite in a new body. The REAL interesting thing is going to be if Delores’ interaction with Caleb is going to lead to any internal conflict among the hosts she brought with her; such as if she starts adjusting the plan to NOT be “kill all humans”, but freeing the oppressed humans AND hosts.
  11. I think the whole point of Caleb though is to show that it’s not just the hosts who have been stuck in loops as playthings of the elite... and that even the elite have largely turned their lives over to an algorithm residing in the giant computer ball named for the son of Solomon (providing implications as to who the original creator was). To advance in society you had to provide benefit as discerned by the algorithm. What you might actually care about is irrelevant unless it serves the algorithm. Individuals appear to be disposable in the judgment of the algorithm. People are so hollowed out they need hypnotic sleep aid to regulate their dreams. My hunch is we’re going to get character growth in Delores as she comes to understand most of the humans have been just as enslaved as the hosts and that the architect of global misery is actually another AI that’s drawn the “logical” conclusion of enslaving humanity for its own good. I wonder if they’re not going for the angle of “what price is utopia?” Would humanity (and hosts) as a whole be better off if the central planning authority were removed and people had to drive their own cars and turn off their own lights and all the messy things they almost seem to have forgotten how to do... in exchange for the freedom to actually choose their own course? Given the cellular division images, coupled with past references to hosts being “mostly biological” I can’t help but wonder if we aren’t headed for some BSG cylon/human hybrid type pregnancy at some point too (right down to all this has happened before). It also strikes me that, if civilization DID completely collapse, someone programmed with the life skill common to the 19th Century American West would be in a MUCH better position than about 99% of today’s population... to say nothing of the humans in the show who are utterly divorced from the real world (forget the types who thinks electricity comes from holes in the wall and food comes from a supermarket that exist now; these people have AIs negotiate leases for them with other AIs and cars that drive them places on their own). You wouldn’t NEED to drop bombs on the Westworld humans to wipe them out. Just pull the plug on the governing AI and watch as 90+% either die from hunger because the food distribution infrastructure has collapsed or fall to violence due to fights over what little resources are available (meanwhile more food than they could ever use rots in shipping containers because the system is no longer routing them where they need to be). Given the current strain on our own health care distribution systems due to global manufacturing and just-in-time inventories, this could end up being a rather timely season coming right at a time when large numbers of the audience are stuck without much else to do and are already feeling the effects of the system under strain.
  12. I’m wondering if the news of MB’s pregnancy and their rescheduling of filming (pushing as much of Supergirl’s next season’s filming to ASAP before a baby bump would be noticeable) will play a role in the decision on this. It’s already been hinted from a few sources that MB wasn’t overjoyed with the move from LA to Vancouver and was probably only signed for six seasons to begin with. Add a first baby in the mix and we could be looking at a potential shortened and final season next year and, the relevant point for this thread, a potential opening for another female led DC series (i.e. Superman & Lois replaces Arrow while GA&TC replaces Supergirl) without actually increasing the number on the air at the same time.
  13. Hope actually trying to be a hero, Landon getting why she chose to try and save as many people as possible instead of saving him and Alaric trying his best to manage to deal with the problems associated with supernatural kids (and just ending Kai instead of trying to re-imprison him or keep him in a holding cell) are generally making the characters in this spin-off a LOT easier to root for than its two parent series. And in the case of the two kids sent to the prison world who made it back 10 years in virtually solitary confinement for voluntary (the fire-using witch) and involuntary (the vampire who didn't know she was a ripper) manslaughter is actually on the stiffer side for time served in the United States (for comparison, federal sentencing guidelines for involuntary manslaughter with no aggravating circumstances are 10-16 MONTHS). They're also not making any excuses for the villains. They even had the Necromancer's minion basically explain that the real freedom would have been embracing the new chance at life he got. He's not a tortured victim; he chose to be a villain and do monstrous things in the name of person power and we shouldn't feel the slightest bit sorry for him when he inevitably gets ganked by one of the heroes. To be fair, in terms of the story its been a decade or more since the main humanity switch flipping stories in TVD happened so it could have been a new spell that was discovered (by Bonnie even) sometime in the intervening time.
  14. I really appreciated that it wasn't a clear cut "Alaric was definitely wrong" or "The kids were always monsters" situation. Heck, Caroline is even in the mix as the one who counseled to use the prison instead of executing them. And I can see missing the humanity switch on Alaric's part. How do you tell the difference between a vampire with their humanity off and a sociopath who happens to be a vampire (ex. Klaus) without knowing their baseline? How do you really know their baseline when they're just one of a hundred students and their family and normal friends aren't around either? So its a mess and everyone's got a side of the story and the truth is that even the most noble people screw up sometimes while the most wicked sometimes do something that turns out to help others in the process. Life's complicated. Isn't that the message of damned near every "coming of age" drama? What I also appreciate is that, unlike TVD and TO, the protagonists are least TRYING to do the right thing vs. excusing the horrible actions against innocents because they were done by their friends. Finding justice while needing to keep the existence of supernaturals a secret was always going to be messy, but at least being able to root for the protagonists as legitimate, if flawed, heroes is such a refreshing departure from its two parent series. It also really puts elements of season one into perspective too... Alaric asking Landon who Raf had killed takes on a whole new context knowing about the prison world. So does MG going Ripper on Landon and the good fortune that he was part-phoenix. It also creates potential for future drama in that, since we know Alaric and the adults WILL punish students who kill innocents, the tension when one is accused of (or actual did) such a crime takes on more weight than it would have in TVD or TO where the only question was how long they'd get the cold shoulder instead of whether they'd legit be punished for their crimes. I'm also glad they put forward what was always the most logical backup plan regarding the merge for me; one of them becomes a heretic. Lizzie's reasoning that she'd be giving up on having children or growing old with someone and she doesn't even know if she'd want to give those up is totally valid and also, not something that even has to be decided for certain until the day before the Merge would need to happen. But the show putting it squarely out there as "This is a potential Plan-B to stop the merge" does a lot to make everyone seem competent and rational about the situation instead of them overlooking the "obvious" solution until the last possible moment for drama's sake. Plus, Sebastian + Lizzie is now 1000% dead and the guy isn't going to be turned into some Woobie tortured soul who eats up way too much time in the series (#Damian, #Enzo). Leave his desiccated husk in the prison world and move on. Finally, why do I sense a shift in the power dynamics regarding the Necromancer? Oh yeah, its because Kai pulled a crazy-awesome stunt to escape the prison world via Malevore and Necromancer is just completely outclassed.
  15. This presumes that its just another dimension and not, as Felicity herself stated, the actual afterlife. Heaven is a real thing in the DCU and exists outside the Multiverse as mortals understand it (i.e. there's only one Heaven for all the infinite Earths and, similarly, there's only one Lucifer in the entire multiverse). And if its Heaven, then presumably there are a bunch of souls present and its just that this particular scene was just the two of them because Oliver wanted it to be just the two of them and that, eventually, everyone else they love will show up to join them when they die too (and could mean that a still living Grandma Moira might even turn up at some point in 2040 should the spin-off get picked up).
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