What to Know About “Les Écorchés”
By Olivia Armstrong
Where exactly is Ford? What does it mean now that the Cradle is destroyed? And which characters’ lives are in limbo? Here’s what you need to know about Westworld Season 2 Episode 7.
Westworld Season 2 Episode 7, “Les Écorchés,” offered a slew of answers within multiple, long-waited standoffs: between Maeve and the Man in Black, between Dolores and Charlotte Hale and — perhaps most illuminative — between Ford and Bernard. If you’re still uncertain where and why these face-offs took place, here’s a quick breakdown to prep you for the next installment, “Kiksuya.” For a more detailed explainer, check out the full episode guide.
So where is Ford?
As you well know, park founder Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins) was shot by Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood) in the last scene of Season 1. It was assumed he was dead and gone until Season 2, Episode, “Phase Space,” suggested otherwise. Ford is, in fact, living in a simulation of Westworld, all thanks to Bernard. Bernard was commanded by Ford to print his creator a pearl (similar to James Delos’) so that his human psyche could live on. Unlike James Delos, however, Ford’s mind can only exist in the simulation of the park. If it were to be placed into a printed body like Delos’ was, his mind would reject reality and reach a cognitive plateau.
What is the Cradle and what does it mean that it’s destroyed?
The CR4-DL — aka “The Cradle” — is a sublevel of the Mesa housing the hosts’ backups. Think of it like backing up your photos to an external drive. When Dolores’ horde, lures the security response team to their deaths, Angela decides to take the fate of the Cradle into her own hands: seducing a responder and triggering his grenade. The external drive of the hosts backups are now wiped out, which means Delos Incorporated just lost a major chunk of their data.
What will happen to Maeve and the Man in Black?
When we last see the two enemies at the end of the episode, their collective mortality is hanging in the balance. Maeve, using her skills within the Mesh Network to control the hosts around her, commands Lawrence’s crew to shoot him down before encouraging a newly woke Lawrence to do the same. But Maeve’s redemption is interrupted when a QA team guns her down just as her daughter is scooped up by the Ghost Nation. Both Maeve and the Man in Black are terribly wounded and while the Man in Black seems to be on his own, Maeve’s only hope is none other than Lee Sizemore.
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