“Westworld” is a new science-fiction thriller airing on HBO, remaking the 1973 classic film. Though it’s early in the series, it’s already clear that this show is confusingly complex and thoroughly intriguing.
The stage of “Westworld” is an amusement park with a Wild West theme. It’s inhabited by frighteningly human-like robots – known as hosts – that at times make it difficult to distinguish who is flesh and bone and who is not. However, as one character aptly puts it, “If you can’t tell the difference then why does it matter?” Each day is a repetition of the previous – the only variations being the “guests,” or the people paying to enter the park for the day. The hosts have no knowledge or indication that their world is a lie, or aren’t supposed to.
“Westworld” boasts an immersive experience with several story lines, not just for the guests who enter the park, but for viewers. Several subplots are introduced quickly and leave us craving more. The recurring characters are incredibly mysterious, and we learn a little more about them in each episode.
The show asks several questions, the most prominent being: What would happen if one of these hosts questions their world? Initially this seems comparable to the premise of “The Matrix,” but “Westworld” is entirely different because viewers are informed about the creators and managers of the park.
“Westworld” is definitely worth checking out, but don’t be surprised if you’re confused after an episode or two. With experienced executive producers J.J. Abrams, this show’s maturity level is high, containing nudity and cursing. One thing is clear – this show will hook you faster than a gunslinger can draw his weapon.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.