Westworld Season 2, Episode 3 spoilers ahead!
The Westworld universe is getting big. There was no Man in Black and no Young William in Season 2, Episode 3, "Virtù e Fortuna." There was no flashback to Arnold and Dorothy's earliest days. Based on the trailer for the next episode, there will be some follow-up to the MiB's arc. But the show is getting big and sprawling enough that the writers can't cover it all in a single hour.
The same thing happened to Game of Thrones in Season 2. But Game of Thrones was a linear show. Westworld has more timeline breaks than a Tarantino film, and the writers must fight to keep everything straight. They're juggling multiple timeframes--five, at last count--and the showrunners can't leave plot threads dangling, or they'll make this yarn even more confusing than it already is.
At least it gives us plenty to dissect. Here, courtesy of the Internet hivemind, are 5 new Westworld theories based on the first three episodes of Season 2.
1. The Grace Theory
There are now three known Delos theme parks. The first is Westworld. The second is Shogun World, which the show revealed at the end of Season 1. And the third, revealed in "Virtue Fortuna," is The Raj, which has a British colonial India theme to it.
We now know where the Bengal tiger, which washed up on the shore of Westworld in Episode 2, came from. On "Virtù e Fortuna," a new human character also washes up on the same shore. During the episode's cold open, we see her riding atop an elephant in The Raj, ready to go safari-ing with a fellow human. However, a rebelling host shoots and (presumably) kills her companion. She is then pushed off a cliff and into the water, beyond The Raj's park limits, by the Bengal tiger. She is later found in Westworld, after being washed ashore, by members of the Ghost Nation Tribe.
Who is this woman? IMDb tells us that her name is Grace, but many fans think this might be the MiB's daughter, Emily. She certainly knows a lot about the park--more than the average person--based on her sketch of a Delos logo in her notebook. Based on her brief exchange with her companion--"You don't think the park would go through the trouble of making one of us pretend to be one of them?" "I wouldn't put it past them"--she may also know there are covert human hosts--like Bernard--who blend seamlessly in with everyone else.
Or maybe she's an industry spy, intent on stealing Delos' data? Whoever she is, there's certainly more to her story.
2. The Charlotte Theory
This theory has been kicking around in different iterations for the past two years, but it's gained additional traction within the last week or two: Charlotte could be Arnold's daughter.
The name of Arnold's dead son is Charlie, which is extremely similar to Charlotte. Charlotte doesn't even have to know about the familial connection; if Arnold died roughly 35 years ago, that could match up with Charlotte's age, and her mother may have been pregnant at the time of Arnold's death. Plus, if Arnold was scrubbed from the public record, she might not recognize him, even if his host copy was working right alongside her.
Bernard and Charlotte are hiding out together immediately after Ford's death, and this "Charlotte is Arnold's daughter" theory creates some interesting possibilities. Would Bernard feel some sort of loyalty to his original's descendant? And if she asks him to do something that he finds unethical, would this not-daughter relationship compromise his decision making? It would be an interesting counterpart to Maeve's storyline concerning her own not-daughter. And speaking of Maeve...
3. The Biological Daughter Theory
Another theory floating about is that Maeve's daughter is actually her real daughter, not her programmed daughter. Perhaps Maeve was one of the first hosts with capability to reproduce and give birth. And this mysterious daughter, who she can't seem to forget despite her best efforts, might be proof of her inherent humanity. She may have escaped her loop to escape the park because her mother/child instinct overrode it.
There's not too much hard evidence for this theory. But eagle-eyed viewers will notice that the new Westworld opening credits include a grey-scaled mother and infant. And if one were to colorize and overlay the face of the mother, it's a dead ringer for Maeve.
4. The Ghost Nation Theory
The Ghost Nation Native American tribe, which resides around the outside of the park, may look intimidating with their white makeup and stoicness. But some viewers theorize that they could be friendly--at least, to the right people.
Fans with long memories will recall Elsie, who said that older hosts can run on old relays, outside the central hub of the park. This could mean that Elsie (who has not been found yet) or some unknown third party could be controlling the Ghost tribe. Fans theorize that the Ghost Nation could be a failsafe just in case things go horribly wrong (as they currently have); they are in place to protect humans and kill other hosts.
If true, this theory would explain why Maeve cannot control the Ghost Nation, despite her attempts to order them midway through Episode 3. It would explain why they seem to be "in character" and purposeful as opposed to the other "freed hosts." Lastly, it would explain why Dolores killed one of them with extreme prejudice in the season premiere. The Ghost Nation may be standing in the way of Dolores's aims. As she states herself, "Not all of us deserve to make it to the Valley Beyond."
5. The Teddy "Flood" Theory
And lastly, here's another end game theory that's making the rounds. "Virtù e Fortuna" ends with Dolores ordering Teddy to kill a band of Confederados. Teddy cannot do it--he's still got some virtue in that host mind of his, and he lets them go. Dolores surreptitiously witnesses this and projects disappointment.
Some fans think that Dolores will kill Teddy for this, which is why he was lying in the water with the other hosts in the Season 2 premiere. Others fans think that Teddy's inner goodness will set up an internal conflict in Teddy's brain. He is committed to Dolores, but he is also committed to stopping Wyatt. Since Dolores is Wyatt, how can he reconcile those two mandates? At some point, he'll have to make a choice.
A final interesting note: Teddy's last name is Flood. Perhaps this is an allusion to the Biblical flood or the flood of ancient Greek mythology, which purged mankind of its sin and wickedness. Perhaps Teddy will be the figurative "flood" that cleanses Dolores, or barring that, prevents her from committing more acts of evil. And perhaps, Teddy can "save" Dolores by killing Dolores/Wyatt, thus reconciling the apparent conflict in his programming.