Westworld Season 2, Episode 9: Vanishing Point Timelines Recap
Spoilers will be present!
The penultimate episode of Westworld’s second season took us to a whole new timeline and setting to fully expose the dark side of William, as well as exposing more of what Bernard, Dolores, and Maeve were up to before Bernard found the lake with all of the hosts drowned in it from the season’s first episode. It was a rather excellent episode that exposed more of this season’s mysterious plot, which has been slowly revealed through the scattered timelines showcased. Hopefully you’ve been paying attention, because like last season, I do believe by the time you watch the final episode, each of the previous episode’s building blocks will all make complete and perfect sense, which is also why I’m looking forward to rewatching the season in full after seeing the finale to see if I can pick up on any clues that were left that we all glossed over without having the end game knowledge in tow. Isn’t science fiction a blast?
On to the timelines recap!
Timeline 1: Pre Ford Being Shot
The Tale of William and His Wife
This is a timeline we really haven’t seen before as it more than likely takes place prior to most of the Season one events. It definitely takes place before Ford gets shot, so we shall go with that for now.
Anyway, we get to see William pretending to be a good guy in the real world while being celebrated for his philanthropy by other rich elites at a party he’s at with his wife and daughter. His wife is depicted as a drunkard that embarrasses their daughter to no end, and William is still a hero to his daughter Emily in this timeline. It’s also revealed in this timeline that Ford and William had a deal with the park in that Delos would stay out of Ford’s narratives, while Ford would stay out of the shady shit Delos was doing in the Valley, which we now know is called the Forge and is essentially the cradle for the guests that Delos has been copying illegally to recreate them as hosts. Ford calls him out for his project breaking their agreement, and gives him a profile card that contains William’s actions from his 30-plus years of Westworld debauchery. Ford also hints that this exchange was a part of the final game he had planned for William, which we have been watching him play in the current Season two timeline.
This timeline concludes with William’s wife calling him out for being a scumbag with a mask on, as she knows he’s evil to the core. Unfortunately for her, their daughter Emily doesn’t know her true Father, so all this time she thinks her Mother’s alcoholism is due to her own weaknesses, and that her Mother is a burden to her Father, who she clearly favors at this point in time. She doesn’t know that her Mother drinks to cope with her life being married to a man that is evil to his core, so on this same evening of the party, she has her mother committed to rehab. That’s when we find out that her Mother committed suicide in the tub, but it wasn’t just because of her drinking problem. William had confessed to her that he’s never loved her or the real world, and that he has always belonged to Westworld, but she wasn’t sleeping, she was awake the whole time, so she heard it all, while also seeing William hide his Westworld profile card. Once he leaves, she grabs the card and finds out what is on it, which are a collection of video feeds from William’s saddistic excursions in the park. Seeing the evil man she knew her husband to be was the straw that broke the camel’s back, so she decides to end herself after seeing William’s evil in action. Although, she leaves the profile card in a memento for her daughter, which explains why when we met Emily, she hates her Father versus how she treated him during this particular timeline.
Timeline 2: At Least One Week After Ford is Shot, but Prior to Bernard Waking on the Beach
The Tale of the MiB and his Daughter Emily
While the timeline above was playing out we also got this timeline interwoven with it to help us realize what Emily is doing with her Father, as well as why she hates him even though in the timeline above she was definitely on his side and despised her Mother instead. The two are currently at some sort of secret field hospital so she can patch her Dad up and call security, which she does. Emily eventually reveals to her Father that she searched him out to find out the truth about why her Mother actually killed herself. For a time she blamed herself, because she was the one that had her Mother committed to rehab, but after finding her Father’s profile card that her Mother left for her, she finally realized that he was an evil mother fucker, and that he is why her Mother was a drunk and why she ultimately killed herself. She knows about the research project at the valley, and wants to use it to confirm her suspicions about her Mother, while also outing her Father’s evil deeds and research to the world.
After the two spar over William being an awful Father, Husband, and man in general, he once again starts to believe that Emily is a host sent by Ford for his final game. When security shows up he shoots them all because he can no longer tell the difference between who is real, and who is a host. He then turns the gun on Emily and blasts her away too because he still thinks she has been sent by Ford as a host to screw with him during his final game in the park. He begins to gloat about sniffing out Ford’s plan to use his Daughter against him as a host, but then he finds his profile card clutched in her hands, which proves she was indeed his real daughter. William has now indirectly killed his wife and directly killed his daughter due to his evil soul, but also due to how paranoid he’s become from playing in the park for over 30 years.
The dude has clearly gone nuts and can no longer separate reality from fantasy, but he fails to kill himself after realizing that he murdered his Daughter. The game has affected him greatly, so much so that he starts to cut into his arm as the episode closes to figure out if he is real or a host himself. Boy is the finale going to be insane!
The Tragedy of Dolores and Teddy
This timeline also checked in on Dolores and Teddy, who are still marching towards the Valley. Early on they’re stopped by the Ghost Nation, which we now know from last week’s episode that have been awoken from sometime, and truly have freedom, which Dolores seemingly still does not as she is in my opinion still a tool for Ford’s to ultimately launch the origin of a new species, which are his awoken hosts. Dolores’ forces mostly die in their battle with the Ghost Nation, but Teddy and she do make it out, although, Teddy shows again that even though Dolores reprogrammed him, he is still awake and realizes it, which disturbs him greatly. He relates to her when he first fell in love with her, and how she is his cornerstone, which is why he’s so conflicted with what she is doing, as well as with what she’s done to him. It starts to look like he’s going to shoot Dolores, but he reminds her and the audience that he could never hurt her, but that he also can no longer protect her, so he blows his central processor out, effectively ending his life. Remember, the cradle was blown up by Dolores, so there are no copies of the hosts left, so Teddy is most likely gone for good. This also explains why we saw him floating in the lake dead in this season’s first episode.
Bernard’s journey is also picked back on in this episode. He still is under Ford’s direct control, so he’s still in the Mesa trying to get out after the massacre. He sees that Charlotte and her team has managed to clone Maeve’s admin powers to Clementime, who in turn used it to make other hosts kill each other. Charlotte seemingly wants to use this ability to make every host in the park kill themselves so they can regain control.
Bernard finds Maeve thanks to Ford controlling him, which also allows Ford to download himself to Maeve, but more on that later. After the download Bernard links back up with Elsie, and they head back out into the park. Ford keeps warning Bernard that she’ll turn on him, and that he should take her out first, but Bernard seemingly is able to wipe Ford’s code before he harms Elsie, but he still casts her aside for her own protection, to which she tells him to fuck off, because poor Elsie has been treated like crap by Bernard even though it’s not really his own doing. Bernard then sets off towards the Valley, because just before he wipes Ford’s code from himself, Ford tells him that Bernard is the only host able to stop the weapon that Dolores is hellbent on using, which also seems to be William’s forge in the Valley.
Maeve had a brief moment in this episode, but she’s still not speaking thanks to what Charlotte’s tech has her hooked up to. Ford explains to her after being downloaded to her that she has been his favorite, and that he was surprise that she didn’t follow the narrative he had created for her in Season One. She was supposed to get on that train and leave, but thanks to her love for her daughter, she could not, which blew Ford away. Maeve is essentially Ford’s Dolores when you compare their relationship with Arnold’s and Dolores’, and as we’ve come to find out, Maeve is much more in control of her own fate than Dolores, who does seem to still be under the control of Ford’s narratives.
Ford eventually tells Maeve that his appreciation for her, who he considers to be a kid, is probably why Ford is still lingering in Westworld so he could save her one last time, which he seemingly does by kissing her forehead, which in turn gives her core access to Westworld’s systems and hosts, so she now has full God mode. Maeve is definitely not done yet!
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