Some Theories That I, A Human And Not A Robot, Have About ‘Westworld’

"Literally everybody in this show is robots. Especially anyone who you think isn’t a robot."

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HBO’s new show, Westworld, has been billed as the spiritual successor of Game of Thrones, except with cowboys instead of dragons. It’s a show which, at first glance, seems to be about a weirdly diverse frontier town, but quickly becomes so much more when it’s revealed to be an excessively elaborate theme-park for rich psychopaths, hosted by robots.

But even more numerous than the robots, are the theories — what’s it all about, why are the robots remembering stuff from their past, who is the creepy black-hatted man? Here are some theories from me, a human person who is definitely not a robot. Or are I?

Theory #1

Either Westworld is set in a world that never experienced the movie Jurassic Park — i.e. a strong, pointed morality tale about not getting too flashy with theme-parks — or Westworld is set in the SAME universe as Jurassic Park, and that creepy Colonel Sanders guy has moved on from dinosaurs and set his sights on sexy, violent robots. Which, to be completely honest, is probably safer than big genetically engineered dinosaurs. He’s learning and growing as a person. Although not too much, because he is still very invested in theme-parks.

Theory #2

This show was actually a mistake caused by Kevin Costner trying to pitch a TV reboot of Waterworld called Wetworld to HBO. They misheard and the rest is history. Costner is still dreaming of his moist TV debut.

Theory #3

Literally everybody in this show is robots. Especially anyone who you think isn’t a robot. The people making robots are robots, Hannibal Lecter guy is a robot, the cows are robots, the visitors are robots. Everyone: robots.

Theory #4

The last scene of the entire show will be a gradual zooming out from the park, revealing that everyone working there is robots, then the entire country is robots, then the entire world is robots, and then we see ourselves watching the TV, and we too are robots, and then we see that we’re all being watched by two aliens in space, and they high five. Fade out to ‘Highway to Hell’.

Theory #5

The theme of this show is ‘isn’t it sad about robots’. It is sad, about those robots. Dang sad. Yessiree.

Theory #6

Ed Harris, or ‘The Man in Black’ is actually a very old version of the titular character ‘Ed’ from the short lived TV show Ed. We don’t know how his bowling alley turned into a giant old western theme park, but I’m sure it’s a hell of a tale.


(Before he started scalping people)

Theory #7

Arnold (the co-creator of the park) has uploaded his brain into a robot somewhere, it seems like the kind of thing that a robot-scientist named Arnold would do. C’mon, Arnold.

Theory #8

Arnold is actually the grown up boy from Hey Arnold. That’s it.

Theory #9

There will be a spooky Halloween episode set in a spooky Halloween theme park, called Monsterworld, and it will be surprisingly emotional.

Theory #10

There are immersive sexy-violent robot theme parks all around the world, and the one in Australia is called ‘Rootworld’ and it’s just Wagga-Wagga.

Theory #11

This is an elaborate comeback scheme for Westlife. It will be wildly successful.


Definitely not robots. Don’t even ask about it, because they’re not robots.

Theory #12

The Man in Black will find a deeper level to the park through the maze, where all the robots look like either Tom or Colin Hanks, and every piece of dialogue is a rhyming couplet. It’s incredibly threatening.

Theory #13

Hannibal Lecter’s big speeches about how evolution comes from mistakes are all to cover up the fact that he made a big whoopsie and half the robots have about seven anuses.

Theory #14

Pauly Shore’s Biodome????

BioDome 1


Theory #15

There is a secret level of Westworld which is based off Mario and has Italian robot plumbers jumping on top of turtles all day. It is very realistic and gory.

Theory #16

Every single host can transform into a car, but cars haven’t been invented yet so they don’t know how to do it. It is part of the sadness that is robots.

Theory #17

At some point, someone will shout “your robots are more human than you’ll ever be!”. Reddit will love it.

Theory #18

The last line of season one will be Hannibal Lecter’s Dr Ford saying “but, in a way, is not society the real robots?”. Reddit will think deeply about this.

Theory #19

The last line of the show will be “but is not God the biggest robot?”. Reddit will shit themselves.

it all of us

Patrick Lenton is a writer of theatre and fiction. He blogs at The Spontaneity Review and tweets inanity from @patricklenton.