This post contains spoilers.
After being closed for more than a year, the most dangerous theme park on television finally reopened Sunday night. Westworld‘s second-season premiere picks up shortly after where the first season finale left off — raising as many questions and possibilities as the open-ended season finale.
The episode focuses mostly on Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) as he tries to figure out exactly what happened since the hosts revolted. Bernard must battle to survive the park, help Charlotte (Tessa Thompson) escape and maintain his secret identity as a robot host, all while his mind is constantly jumping back and forth in time.
In the meantime, Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and Teddy (James Marsden) make a game of killing off guests in a completely kickass scene with a lot of payoff and emotional weight. Maeve (Thandie Newton) tries to find her daughter with the help of personnel in the park, and the Man in Black (Ed Harris) tries to survive on his own.
It seems much of the focus this season will be on Bernard and the Man in Black. Bernard leaps back and forth through time, which will likely reveal to the audience details from the days since the previous season.
But the story is clearly based around the Man in Black. It’s apparent when he is the one of the few to survive the shootout at the investor’s function, only to stumble across a horse and a building that has the exact type of hat he wore the previous season. The Man in Black fought to raise the stakes in season one, and he should be careful what he wishes for.
The episode concludes with countless dead bodies of hosts washed up on the shore, and Bernard remarking he killed them all. It’s a perfect dramatic seed to plant, as the tension of his actions will be drawn out over the course of the season. Either way, the show’s premiere set up the future of the season dramatically, and bringing up a lot of questions. What does Delos do with the DNA they take from the guests? Will Maeve find her daughter? Are the hosts omnipotent now or is this all completely programmed and planned by Ford (Anthony Hopkins)? Why did a tiger wash up on the beach?
The preview at the conclusion of the show implies the return of Jimmi Simpson as a younger incarnation of the Man in Black and Ben Barnes as Logan. Perhaps this is what the company uses the DNA for. Or maybe we’ll learn more about the history of the park.
One thing is for certain — there is a samurai world within this universe, and I can’t wait to see it. Westworld‘s newest season started how the previous ended: with a bang and questions that demand answers.