Monday, June 18, 2018

What I’m Watching: Westworld

Westworld: Season 2, Episode 8 “Kiksuya” (B+)

It’s a risky thing to be more than a week behind on this show, and so I’m catching up as quickly as I possibly can (I’ll make it before the finale). What I had read about this episode was that some considered it to be a career-best turn for actor Zahn McClarnon. I think I first encountered him in a regrettable role on the CW’s less-than-quality “Ringer,” but then I got to see him in crucial recurring roles on “The Red Road,” season two of “Fargo,” and of course as Officer Mathias on “Longmire.” I know he was submitted as an Emmy contender for Best Guest Actor for this role, and I’d be surprised if he did get the nomination because I doubt many know who he is, but it would be nice if he got that recognition. What this hour accomplished is that it showed how those hosts who are able to remember things from their previous iterations - previously just Dolores and Maeve - experience their enlightenment through seeing a way out, sharing past memories with someone else, and then watching that entire history be erased when the techs arrive to reprogram and reboot defective, wandering hosts. Having Akecheta tell Maeve’s daughter about everything he learned and went through while Maeve was lying, seemingly unable to be saved, on the table was powerful since she seems to have developed even more incredible powers, and just because she’s not following a map specifically laid out by Ford doesn’t mean she’s not capable of astonishing things, even when she’s not conscious.

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