New to Westworld? Here Are 6 Reasons to Start
By Olivia Armstrong
The theme park where guests indulge fantasies with robots will hook you. The mystery will keep you wanting more. Get into the drama about a destination offering the future of sin, the artificial intelligence that fuels it and the humans that sense there’s something more sinister at play. Watch the first episode free.
There’s more to this adult playground.
Sure, there’s plenty of indulgence, heart-stopping shootouts and — for the tech-obsessed — tons of robots. Beyond the park of Westworld, however, the show focuses on the mysterious Delos corporation, which contains deep-seated secrets beneath where the guests come to play.
Don’t let the western theme deter you.
Westworld includes both western and sci-fi elements, but rather than push away those who didn’t grow up watching Star Trek or Clint Eastwood movies like The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly; the genre-bending drama lures you in with its mystery, action and thrills — much like a destination theme park would — and will keep you guessing.
The cast is next-level.
Evan Rachel Wood, Jeffrey Wright, Ed Harris, James Marsden, Thandie Newton and Anthony Hopkins as enigmatic park director Dr. Robert Ford lead the ensemble of robotic “hosts” and humans. Who’s on whose side in this story of man versus machine remains to be seen.
It encourages you to play along.
Season 1 is often compared to a video game. In fact, co-creator Jonathan Nolan was heavily inspired by video games in bringing the series to fruition. You’ll hear references to “the maze," and, like the park’s levels; the deeper you explore, the more dangerous it becomes. Since there are no rules, some guests make their own. Others, whose fantasies are more sinister, venture to the outskirts, where the stakes are even higher.
Even the soundtrack is inventive.
Throughout the first 10 episodes, you’ll hear unique riffs on old favorites from Radiohead, Soundgarden, The Cure, The Rolling Stones and more, emitted through the old-timey player piano at the local saloon. Why a player piano? Well, they were among the first robots after all.
The puzzle is worth the payoff.
If you’ve heard buzz about Westworld, chances are you’ve encountered rumblings about fan theories. Each episode contains clues — about the park, hosts and Delos corporation — and have become topics of debate on sites like Reddit. Moments of intrigue reference episodes prior, and also look ahead. If something gives you pause at first, keep watching to see if your inklings are correct. The closer you experience each episode in sequence, the better you’ll be at decoding the mystery — and the more epic the experience when the twists reveal themselves.
Westworld Season 1 is available to stream. Watch the first episode free without a subscription. Season 2 premieres in 2018.
Watch the first episode of Westworld for free without an HBO subscription. Created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, the genre-defying drama follows the dawn of artificial intelligence and the evolution of sin. Catch up now before it returns in 2018.