by Miller C. Lashbrook
Westworld has had a tough time finding its voice and purpose after leaving the theme park setting. Season 3 and 4 both have similar issues of brushing up against what I loved about the show so much, but then straying away from it. The first half of this season was exciting and felt like the best parts of the first two seasons, but the second half of the season seems lost and directionless. All of that being said, the performances by the actors, the world building, and production design are so impressive, that I keep coming back to the show.
For all that I think this season got wrong, this season does have some great reveals and moments. I think the end of episode two was quite possibly my favorite, with the reveal that they have built a new park that is very similar to West World, but it is 1920’s New York. This moment and the beginning of episode 3 really felt like my favorite parts of seasons 1 and two. The ending of the show, with Deloris creating a new Westworld in the Sublime does make it seem like the writers know that the park is the best part of the show at least.
Weirdly, it felt like the episode ending was written for binge streaming, rather than week-to-week streaming. I just think that toward the middle of the season there were way too many manufactured “WTF” moments with the numerous time jumps and character reveals.
The production design this season was amazing. Every penny HBO spends on this show can be seen on screen between the locations, sets, and acting. This show does what HBO is known for, making TV feel cinematic.
Even though this season ended on a sour note for me, I will come back to this show for the actors, the characters, and the world, even if the story is lacking.
3/5 Host Pearls 🤖