Westworld episode 7

Why Do Two Different Characters Reference a “Blood Sacrifice”?

Consider this our weekly “I have no idea what this means, so let’s throw some stuff at the wall until we know more” section.

Early in “Trompe L’Oeil,” Charlotte Hale explains her plan to remove Dr. Ford from his position in Westworld, slyly noting that they are going to require a “blood sacrifice” to get the job done. It’s a dark and theatrical phrase from a woman who has quickly revealed herself to be a dark and theatrical person. Of course the woman who has the robot outlaw tied up in her bed would view the world as a giant game.

But then the same phrase rears its head much later in the episode, when the truth about Ford and Bernard (more on that in a moment) is revealed and Theresa Cullen meets her untimely end. Before she exists stage right, Dr. Ford uses the same words – he too requires a blood sacrifice. Theresa doesn’t have enough time to react or to question why he says the same phrase that Charlotte did in a private conversation a day earlier. She’s out of time and Dr. Ford isn’t one to give away his secrets, even to a doomed colleague.

So let’s talk about this. As far as I can tell, there are two obvious paths for this take. It could be as simple as Ford knowing that specific phrase because his power over the Host extends outside of the park. Hector Escaton, naked and tied up in bed, was present for Theresa and Charlotte’s meeting. If Ford can control armies of hosts with a specific word or hand gesture, what’s to stop him from using them as spies, to listen in on conversations and report back to him? In that case, the use of “blood sacrifice” would be simple cruelty – he heard their entire conversation and is throwing the phrase back at her in her final moments.

The wackier angle, the one that I don’t really believe but I’m going mention anyway, is that there are other unaware Hosts lurking around the real world besides Bernard. And maybe (maybe!), Charlotte is one of them.

Nah. That has to be nah. Right? Right?

Westworld episode 7

How About That Final Scene?

We’ve been edging around it for a few thousand words now, so let’s just get to it.

In the final scenes of “Trompe L’Oeil,” we learn a series of increasingly horrifying truths. Ford is maintaining a secret workshop underneath the secret house where he stores his secret robot family. That secret workshop contains technology that can build a new Host in a matter of days, far from the prying eyes of Delos. And then, we learn that Bernard didn’t bring Theresa here to expose this, but because he was under orders from Dr. Robert Ford. His creator. Because Bernard Lowe is a host and like the other hosts, he didn’t even know it. He never questioned his existence. Because why should he?

Even as he smashes Theresa Cullen’s head into a wall and ends the life of his friend and lover, he remains blissfully unaware of the things he’s programmed to ignore. He can’t see the door to the lab. The plans describing how to build a Bernard robot look like nothing to him. God wants him to take care of that woman? Sure thing. Thou shalt not kill, but thou shalt have no other gods. When God says jump, Bernard can only ask how high.

It’s as unsettling as anything we’ve seen on Westworld so far, our first “real” death in a show where characters have died thousands of times but always come back, good as new. The scene is even shot in such a way to rub salt in the wound. Theresa is bludgeoned in the background, out of focus, while a brand new host is slowly printed in the foreground. Human life is secondary to Dr. Robert Ford, a distraction from his Creation.

It’s an intensely disturbing scene packed with revelations, but in true Westworld fashion, it also finds time to ask more questions. If Dr. Ford can build Hosts in secret, how many other unregistered hosts are floating around? How many are working at the park? How many are doing his bidding out in the real world? And unless my eyes deceive me, this secret lab is where Bernard has been conducting his off-the-record, Alice in Wonderland-recommending conversations with Dolores. When have those conversations been taking place? What did Bernard think he was doing when he was interrogating her? Westworld, like Lost before it, is a show built on sharing half-truths and offering morsels instead of full servings. Each puzzle piece you are given reveals that the picture on the box is completely different than the one represented by the pieces on the table.

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