The Atlantic

Westworld’s Virtual Afterlife Might Not Be Fiction

HBO’s drama added a layer of complication—and real-world relevance—by introducing digitally simulated locations in its second season.
Source: HBO

This post contains spoilers through the end of the second season of Westworld.

When Westworld premiered in October of 2016, the show quickly made clear that it would ask viewers to question the nature of its reality. But it can be easy to forget now, after 20 episodes of labyrinthine plotting and philosophizing, how even the most basic aspects about the show were once mysteries. Viewers initially had reason to wonder whether all the gunfights and brothel banter between humans and manmade “hosts” were actually happening in the show’s physical world or in some computer simulation. “Do guests go to a physical place to experience the park, or is the game an elaborate, VR dream space, à la Inception or The Matrix?” in one of a few articles from the fall of 2016 asking such questions.

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