This week's Westworld brought forth a whole lot of pay off for some characters in the show and for some plot lines we've been waiting patiently to see resolve, or at least actually go somewhere. The results of these various pay offs and plot lines have set up what's to come in the weeks ahead, in addition to that pretty interesting cliffhanger. Let's dig in, shall we?
Phase Space opens up with that same old chat between Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and Bernard (Jeffrey Wright). It's still difficult to say exactly when this takes place in the timeline, but we come to realize that they have had this conversation many times before and that Dolores is seriously in control and possibly has been for some time. We then move back to what appears to be the most current timeline and, following some hardcore cruelty on Dolores' part last week, we catch up with the new and (depending on your perspective) improved Teddy (James Marsden) back in Sweetwater as they're waiting to get the train up and running. Turns out, the new Teddy seriously F'd up. Like, way more cold-blooded than Dolores was before. You guys remember a week ago when Teddy was still nice? You know, as killer robots go.
Moving on. We catch up with Ashley (Luke Hemsworth) and Charlotte (Tessa Thompson) who have finally captured the elusive Peter Abernathy. Charlotte also gave us some sense of a timeline here, as she sounds off her surprise at the fact that there are still hosts to kill after a week. So, it sounds like in the most current timeline, it's only been a week since Ford (Anthony Hopkins) really messed things up at the end of season 1. Ashley and Charlotte literally pin Abernathy down in brutal fashion with securing bolts so he can't leave until the clean up crew gets there to deal with him. It's straight-up cruel and Ashley doesn't seem to have the stomach for it.
We then catch back up with Maeve (Thandie Newton) and her gang of misfits who, when we last left them, were about to be slaughtered by a great many Shogun warriors. Or they would have, were it not for Maeve's newly discovered witch powers. We catch up with them in broad daylight in the bloody aftermath. So many dead Shogun. We then bare witness to that weird Geisha heart ritual, whereby Akane (Rinko Kikuchi) takes the heart of Sakura (Kiki Sukezane), ultimately to leave it at the Shogun temple and to set it on fire so that her spirit can rest easy, but that's jumping ahead just a bit. Before that can happen, Maeve has to go bargain for the lives of her friends. While she could have used her witch powers to make things easy, Musashi (Hiroyuki Sanada) offers to battle for their freedom. This leads to a sweet ass samurai duel and, once Musashi emerges victorious and chops off his opponents head, they're off on their merry way. They eventually get to the Shogun temple to make their way back to Westworld where Maeve's daughter is. This is where we part ways with Akane and Musashi in a rather emotional moment.
After making us wait two weeks following a cliffhanger, we finally caught back up with William (Ed Harris), aka The Man in Black and his newly-discovered daughter Grace (Katja Herbers). Or is it his daughter? William accuses Grace of possibly being a host at one point. Grace and William, whilst sitting around a campfire later, have it out about his wife's death and we come to learn a lot about their splintered relationship. This is easily one of William's most emotional moments on screen to date, as his daughter pleas for him to come home and to leave this fantasy world behind. They come to an agreement but, come sunrise, we see that William bailed on Grace, showing his true colors. That didn't work out so well since they got ambushed, but still. Way to stick to who you are, William.
Following the last bits of Shogun World, Maeve went off to go find her daughter alone, insisting to her band of followers that it's something she needed to do on her own. And she did exactly that. She and her daughter have a very touching moment, but it's truly only a moment before things get ugly extra fast. As one might imagine, it didn't go as planned. Her daughter has a new mom and, just after this discovery is made, some of the Ghost Nation warriors showed up to ugly things up a bit. In a moment of cruelty and compassion rolled into one, Maeve drags her used-to-be daughter away from danger, leaving her new mom there to die, or so it would seem. Lee (Simon Quarterman) has had enough of being put in danger and put that radio he found recently to use, calling for help.
Before the episode reaches its unsettling conclusion, the clean up crew got the map up of the park back up and running and they've figured out that Dolores has got the train running and that she and her bloody gang are leaving the park. What's their plan exactly? We have no idea, but killer robots are heading toward civilization. Lastly, Bernard and Elsie (Shannon Woodward) are still trying to clean up this mess and figure out what's gone so terribly wrong. This leads them to The Cradle, aka the host backup system, which is locking all of the humans out. Once they get to The Cradle, which is a massive room housing all of the host data, Bernard taps into it so that he can go inside and see what's actually going on. It then almost becomes like Inception, as Bernard wanders through a dream version of Sweetwater before the bloodshed, ultimately making his way to the brothel. Even for Westworld, this is weird. But who is it that he finds sitting at the player piano at the brothel? None other than his old buddy Doctor Ford. And that's where they leave us. It looks like we may learn a bit more about his intricate game next week and we will likely see the more significant return of Ford. Westworld returns Sunday on HBO.