Westworld: The Winter Line
March 23, 2020 5:04 AM - Season 3, Episode 2 - Subscribe

Maeve fights Nazis and Bernard arrives back at Westworld
posted by octothorpe (32 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
√-1 seemed a bit tame for a Star Trek style overwhelming of a supercomputer these days. Making it into an interminable conversation was fun though.
posted by rhamphorhynchus at 5:57 AM on March 23 [6 favorites]


This season seems to be moving along quickly, and we're watching carefully for any sort of multiple timeline hints, but we're either missing them or everything is happening at more or less the same time - around 7 months post-park-collapse.

In any case it was good (and sad) to see Hector and Sizemore again, and the many layers of simulation were a treat - here's Maeve, a host, becoming aware that she's in a simulation of a park with Sizemore, who doesn't. We thought the GoT callout was great.
posted by jquinby at 5:59 AM on March 23 [2 favorites]


rhamphorhynchus: "√-1 seemed a bit tame for a Star Trek style overwhelming of a supercomputer these days. Making it into an interminable conversation was fun though."

She read the code, maybe they'd forgotten "include cmath".
posted by octothorpe at 6:08 AM on March 23 [7 favorites]


This season reminds me of a two book series I really liked called Daemon and Freedom(TM) by Daniel Suarez. Really enjoying it so far, especially how Aaron Paul is basically playing the part of a ShadowRun samurai.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 7:15 AM on March 23 [4 favorites]


I guess "Hey guys, just offhand, what's the 50th Busy Beaver number, again?" wouldn't have landed with most of the audience...
posted by rhamphorhynchus at 7:26 AM on March 23 [2 favorites]


I was crushed when Felix didn't respond to Maeve's hand squeeze. I'm so glad it was just the simulated him. At this point, I can't remember who's alive and who's dead among the second tier characters, so seeing Felix and Sizemore didn't provoke any disbelief for me.

Bernard and Stubbs was more entertaining than I thought it would be. Stubbs' wry, "If you wanted my help, you could have just asked me." was a better line delivery than he's given in two seasons.
posted by gladly at 9:18 AM on March 23 [10 favorites]


I am enjoying this show, but it is very, very bad. I swear this season feels more like an F/X show than an HBO one. The budget and effects are great, but the writing and direction is suuuuuper cheesy.
posted by chuntered inelegantly from a sedentary position at 10:20 AM on March 23 [3 favorites]


Also thank god they fixed the sound mixing issues from episode 1. That was so poorly mixed I had to rewatch multiple scenes multiple times just to even hear the dang dialog.
posted by chuntered inelegantly from a sedentary position at 10:21 AM on March 23


I am enjoying this show, but it is very, very bad.

I strenuously object.
posted by Gaz Errant at 10:42 AM on March 23 [3 favorites]


Also thank god they fixed the sound mixing issues from episode 1.
Did they? It was still pretty terrible for us.
posted by rhamphorhynchus at 10:49 AM on March 23 [2 favorites]


I guess "Hey guys, just offhand, what's the 50th Busy Beaver number, again?" wouldn't have landed with most of the audience...

She could have go into "Let's say I'm a TRAVELING SALESMAN, and I need to visit all 200,000 cities on Earth, in which order...." and both been more realistic and also landed with the audience, IMHO.
posted by sideshow at 12:13 PM on March 23 [4 favorites]


Maybe she noticed some gimbal locking when looking straight up, and realised the sim didn't use quaternions.
posted by rhamphorhynchus at 2:03 PM on March 23 [5 favorites]


That Game of Thrones bit immediately dropped the score of this episode by a couple of points for me.
posted by Pendragon at 3:47 PM on March 23 [4 favorites]


There was a Medieval World in the original movies.
posted by octothorpe at 4:00 PM on March 23 [1 favorite]


Sure, but I meant those hack-frauds Benioff and Weiss as technicians cutting up a dragon. Took me right out of the episode.
posted by Pendragon at 4:07 PM on March 23 [9 favorites]


The showrunners were obviously told to make the story way easier to follow this season, and I may regret saying this, but they've overcorrected in this ep.

When Maeve goes on about how she's in a simulation for line after line, I'm like: if we didn't already get it from the aspect ratio change, from Sizemore's stuttering, from the dissolving world, we never will.
posted by adrianhon at 4:26 PM on March 23 [7 favorites]


Why doesn't the team of guys with guns shoot the guy attacking them with an axe ? Have we replaced WestWorld with PlotWorld? Guess it makes sense why D&D would show up then.
posted by kokaku at 5:41 PM on March 23 [5 favorites]


Consider it this way: WestWorld's world is our world in the not too far future. As it's our world, HBO had produced Game of Thrones with its disappointing final season. The writers for the simulation that Maeve experiences are still pissed off about that final season of GoT, and for an easter egg they threw in simulated D&D looking like idiots with the dragon.
posted by ShooBoo at 7:32 PM on March 23 [3 favorites]


The universe they have created just made me so anxious about finding a new ipad for Bernard. I mean, Maeve used one to super-power herself (which, why doesn't all the hosts do that?) so it seems like cheat codes are king.
posted by valkane at 8:56 PM on March 23


Why doesn't the team of guys with guns shoot the guy attacking them with an axe ?

Because he's their boss that went missing for a few days/weeks, and all he's not really trying to fight them that hard.

Also, he took a bullet in shoulder, although in fairness that was from the first pair of dudes.
posted by sideshow at 8:57 PM on March 23 [1 favorite]


> Also thank god they fixed the sound mixing issues from episode 1. That was so poorly mixed I had to rewatch multiple scenes multiple times just to even hear the dang dialog.

Captions help with this.
posted by Pronoiac at 10:33 PM on March 23 [1 favorite]


When I saw the GoT dragon I chuckled and was gonna give them one freebie fourth-wall break for the season but then a few seconds later the minstrel band was playing the damned WW theme. No more fourth wall breaking!

Anyway, here’s the ScreenCrush recap.
posted by Burhanistan at 4:09 AM on March 24 [2 favorites]


sideshow... aren't we talking months?

i get that he's their boss but he's also hacking at them with an axe
posted by kokaku at 4:51 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


We had to rewind a bit when Hector showed up - both the wife and I went "Noah Wyle? In our Westworld?"

I think this episode really depended on people understanding the point of the Forge and the digital afterlife last season, which I don't know was necessarily all that clear.

I'm enjoying that Bernard isn't just gonked out this season. Although he was sort of the focus of large chunks of last season, he sort of slouched through it like a zombie.

I'll mark this one down as a setup episode.
posted by Kyol at 7:17 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


i want to live in that fucking cement factory
posted by lalochezia at 6:00 PM on March 25 [1 favorite]


When Paramount Ranch burned in the Woolsey Fire I figured that was the end if it’s run on Westworld so I was tickled by the show’s integration of its fire damaged remnant into the plot.

The rest of the episode didn’t do much for me.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 7:25 PM on March 25 [5 favorites]


The writing and plotting this season seem much more conventional than the previous two. The first two seemed more open ended and interested in seeing where they could go given their premises. This season seems like it’s trying to find its way to an ending, much like the final season of GoT. Let’s get this wrapped up and over with.
posted by hwestiii at 7:30 PM on March 26


stubbs glitching was an amazing visceral bit of acting that I was very impressed by. so ceepy
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:27 AM on March 29


Yes! Loved it.
posted by rmd1023 at 4:17 AM on March 30


It’s M. Night Shaym-aliens!

Maybe the simple simulation was a test for that guy to see if she still retained her characteristics from WestWorld
posted by LizBoBiz at 11:14 AM on April 2


Compared to the exciting first episode this one landed flat. Partly because I'm all-in for the near future cyberpunk story, revisiting dilapidated old sets feels like a step back. Also because so much of the episode was Bernard. I'm just going to say it directly now: he is a boring character that sucks all the joy out of every scene he's in. It's like his emotion chip was programmed with only one valence, "brooding". It was terrible last season, as Kyol points out above. It doesn't seem much better this season. To the point where Stubs is the comic relief. It's maddening, Jeffrey Wright is a good actor with much more range, but the writing and directing is keeping him down.

Maeve's story also didn't really grab me. Mostly it was just confusing, and I say this as a fan of "what if it's all a simulation" sci-fi. The square root of -1 thing was really stupid too; like folks have noted up-thread at least use a plausible conundrum if you're going to Captain Kirk your way through an AI scenario. The one part of Maeve's story I did really like was the first minutes with Hector, before she realizes he has no memories. He felt off the whole time to me but I wrote it off to my confusion or maybe bad directing. And she slowly figures it out and it's dreadful, nicely done.

I think all I really want to see is more Avenging Angel. Not interested at all in Bernard, even as a foil to Dolores. Sort of interested in Maeve but she needs to break free into relevance.
posted by Nelson at 7:40 AM on May 15


When Maeve's big reveal was that the simulation had its own code running in the simulation, I was sure, sure, she was going for an infinite recursion. So, so disappointed by the square root of -1 thing.
posted by dbx at 8:16 PM on June 1


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