After substantial delays, a whole bunch of rumormongering, and an increasingly badass series of trailers, HBO's Westworld finally arrived this evening and turned out to be ... pretty goddamn entertaining! Well, how about that?
The series, created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, screened to an enthusiastic response at Fantastic Fest last week. I was in that audience, enjoyed what I saw, and was eager to rewatch the premiere this evening. Upon rewatch, I decided I liked this episode even more. This pilot is pretty much exactly what I wanted this series to be.
The intricate structure, the sense of doom hanging over every scene (delightfully punctured by the occasional moment of dark comedy), Evan Rachel Wood's performance, the needle drops (yes, that was a ragtime version of Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun" and an orchestral arrangement of The Rolling Stones' "Paint It Black"; can a certain old-school Pearl Jam tune be far behind?), Ed Harris being an out-and-out monster, the glimpse we're given at the show's various mysteries, the tantalyzing throwaway lines indicating just how far down the rabbit hole this series might go (what was that about a park-generated horror scenario involving cannibal cultists in the desert?), Anthony Hopkins almost getting attacked by a naked, Shakespeare-quoting robot man, that final moment with the fly...
Every second of this worked for me.
Yes. Thank you. I am onboard and ready to see more.
For now, there is much to chew over, so I thought I'd turn the floor over to you guys. What do you think's going on with Ed Harris' Man In Black (I think I know!)? Why does sub-level B38 look like the inside of a shopping mall? How great are those opening credits?
Sound off below. If there's enough interest to justify a weekly open thread, we'll consider running one (note: I conducted this same experiment with Preacher and never ran a follow-up, for a variety of reasons).