Spoiler warning for anyone who hasn't yet watched Westworld's doozy of a Season 2 finale.
Westworld's finale, titled "The Passenger," was destined to throw viewers for as many loops as possible, and it delivered fully on most fronts. Admittedly, it felt like the episode shorted some characters of a grander ending, such as the all-important Maeve, but Dolores and Bernard were seemingly given the full brunt of Westworld's story heading into the outside world for Season 3, with host Charlotte Hale keeping them company. Yes, the OUTSIDE WORLD. It's happening, people. We can't tackle every single detail here, so let's stick to how Dolores and Bernard's stories once again collided and expanded.
Into The Forge
Now without Teddy, but with the smooshed-up bullet he used to kill himself, Dolores made her way to the Valley Beyond (a.k.a. the Forge, a.k.a. Drowned Host Central, a.k.a. #Blessedworld), running into a wounded and slightly more coherent Man in Black. But old William didn't make it into the Forge at that time, as Dolores sabotaged his gun, resulting in some of his hand getting blown off. So then there were two, and I don't mean fingers.
Dolores and Bernard entered the Forge, where all of the data on the humans' vile behavior was stored, and once they were looped into the system, they discovered that a digital iteration of Logan was running everything within; Logan never had his brain read by Delos, so this was a fully artificial version. And actually, Bernard had been in the Forge a bunch of times, having instructed digi-Logan about what to do. Interestingly enough, all of the human data was stored within books inside a giant library, which Dolores took some time to read through. (She was quite interested in Strand's book, further proving Delos has copies of some of its employees stored therein, and possibly also hinting at real-world Strand being a host-hybrid.)
It became clear that Dolores didn't want an entire park of hosts to make it out into the real world, because they weren't all set up to take on that life. But Dolores herself, and possibly a few others, could be made to survive by understanding as much as there is to know about human behavior. Of course, the episode had initially made it seems like Dolores' big plans were for naught when viewers caught sight of Dolores' body with a hole through her eye. Except, Dolores wasn't really dead. At least not her consciousness.
Into The Real World
It turns out Bernard really is/was responsible for bringing Dolores and Ford's wishes to fruition. After killing Dolores himself, aiming to stop her from deleting all of the human's encrypted data, Bernard had a change of manufactured heart, and enacted one last switcheroo to truly shatter the boundary between the real world and Westworld (along with its sister worlds). Bernard snatched up Dolores' brain pearl, crafted a fully functional replica of Charlotte Hale, and gave it Dolores' consciousness. And all while being guided by a fully imagined Ford, because why not? Obviously, the naked Hale host had to be the one to kill the human counterpart, who had previously murdered Elsie and thus didn't deserve salvation in Bernard's eyes. Or anyone else's.
Bernard then also mashed up his own memories, in order to keep him from immediately squealing. So in the most-most-current timeline, as the befuddled Bernard was following Strand's team around, we'd actually been watching Dolores' version of Hale. Now, after Strand's team has been killed, along with Bernard, Dolores-as-Hale attempted to make her big escape, equipped with a handful of other unidentified host pearls. She's stopped by Stubbs, who acknowledged he knows that she's a host. But he let her go, showing his loyalty resides with Ford, who'd personally hired him...and possibly also created him?!?
And now...Dolores is in the real world, people! As Hale, she made it back to Arnold's house and created another version of Evan Rachel Wood's body to be put into, while also crafting and training a new Bernard. (So many Bernards in this show.) These were some of the scenes that we'd seen earlier this season, when Dolores was the one putting Bernard through host analysis. Dolores also made another version of Hale, presumably to keep up appearances with Delos, but it's unclear which of the pearls was put into Hale's double. My most obvious guess would be Teddy, although it's possible Dolores put Peter's mind in there, to add some weird poetic justice to Hale finally getting a hold of Peter's brain, though not at all in the way she'd wanted.
So What Now?
Dolores wrapped things up by issuing Bernard a challenge of sorts. She copped to knowing that their kind isn't equipped for long-term survival in the human world, and that their best bet is not to do it as partners, but from opposing sides. Dolores will do what she needs to do to make it, assumedly with others, and Bernard is meant to go and chase them. Even if it doesn't last long, it will have been more than any host has been able to do before. (Presumably.) And Bernard indeed looks tickled to finally get his new peepers on a world he was only programmed to remember. And I will be damned if Robert Ford won't be heavily involved in Dolores' plans; he almost definitely left some shit for her to find, right?
Having also had a Ford-ly change of heart, Dolores-as-Hale set it up so that all of the hosts who went through The Door were sent to their own little digital corner of the universe where no one could touch them, thus guaranteeing their possibly eternal happiness. For an episode that featured a whole lot of deaths, Maeve's and Zombie Clementine's and Elsie's included, things kind of ended on a high note for quite a few characters, even if it doesn't look so good for humanity later on.
Sadly, Westworld probably won't be returning to HBO until some point in 2020, so we're going to be stuck making theories for a long while. So it's a good thing this is Westworld then, right? For more to watch in the upcoming months, head to our summer premiere schedule.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.