So first of all kids, don't watch this show drunk. I am currently on my holidays but I didn't know the Americans turned their clocks back or whatever so instead of 2 AM the episode aired on 3 AM my time. By that time I was smashed. I still watched it but man did I not got anything. Fortunately I blocked out that dead dog shot. Unfortunately I still had to see it upon rewatching.
There is a little bit of an uproar about this episode and most of it comes from people being so fucking impatient they assume the whole thing with Maeve manipulating Felix and Sylvester is a plot hole. In new interview with Nolan for EW he points out we will know exactly why they helped her in episode 8. But no. Let's whine all over the reddit. People cannot even wait for a fucking season to end, my God.
But getting back to the episode it was the first one without Dolores and I didn't miss her. A show that shall not be named not to give me PTSD has episodes without certain characters all the time. I think Dolores scenes are great but we need to see some of her own self because so far she is guided by Arnold to the degree that she is still very much a puppet. Maeve however is a whole other beast.
This episode focused largely on her. We didn't see what happened instantly after the ending of last episode (perhaps this is what we are going to see in episode 8?) but we did see her wake up again, on her own, to Felix's shock. A bulk of the episode was Maeve manipulating both Sylvester and Felix to aid her. The most stand out sequence was Maeve walking around the facility set to orchestral version of Radiohead's Motion Picture Soundtrack (at the beginning of the episode we also heard my favorite, Fake Plastic Trees)
We saw Maeve walk around, see hosts being tested, created, acting out scenes. She sees artificial animals, she sees that everything in her world is fake. Finally she sees the greeting video containing her own memories of her and her daughter. That scene was very, very moving, thanks to the soundtrack and Thandie Newton's outstanding performance. Maeve is extremely pragmatic person and manages to keep her cool until she sees her daughter. It was all wonderfully acted out.
In Teddy and Man in Black storyline we get to hear very interesting description of the maze which Teddy calls a sum of a man's life, someone who cheated death and built a maze outside so that his enemies couldn't kill him. This is looking more and more like Arnold being the center of the maze, metaphorically - a code that is hidden inside the hosts surrounded by firewalls Ford is too dumb to bring down.
Anyways ,Teddy and Man in Black steal soldiers clothes and then Teddy is recognized as a dude who slaughtered his fellow companions. Man in Black and Teddy are taken prisoner and in the moment when Teddy is about to be branded he has a flashback to the massacre remembering that yep, it wasn't just Wyatt who killed these men but Teddy too. Teddy imagines himself a story where he is a damsel no more, frees himself and machine guns down all the people there to Man in Black's hilarious expression.
Meanwhile, Ford is walking around the park ordering to tear shit down to make place for his new narrative. At the same time Elsie and Bernard try to figure out who it putting those satellite uplinks in hosts and trying to steal data. The trail leads Bernard to secluded house with 5 hosts - a dog, two little boys and parents. Now focus guys - remember that picture Ford showed Bernard? The one he said is of him and Arnold? Bernard sees that guy who he was told was Arnold - and later in that scene we find out that is Ford's dad.
Why did Ford lie what Arnold looks like? Or if Arnold was in the picture, why didn't Bernard see him?
I'm about to blow your minds so hard you shit yourself - this is a theory that was floating around for a while but now I fully buy it. Bernard is a host based on Arnold. We actually did see Arnold - those scenes with Dolores? The ones where she is interrogated while clothed, in different place then other interrogation scenes? That's not Bernard, that is Arnold talking to her. He is wearying different clothes, he acts different, he tells Dolores stuff we don't know if Bernard knows of like the maze. After Arnold died Ford made a host - Bernard - who is based on his friend/rival. And he has no idea he is a host. Look at all the evidence I found.
Ford conveniently shows up and tells Bernard that these are the hosts based on his family, a gift from Arnold. Later the dog that the family has is killed by the host version of Ford. When Ford talks to the boy, little Robert tells troubled and increasingly freaked out Ford that he killed the dog because Arnold told him to. To put him out of his misery because the dog was a killer.
There was also other drama in headquarters where Lee is getting smashed as hell. He tries flirting with an attractive girl but it doesn't work. He then drunkenly pisses all over the map in the main room, to Hemsworth number 3 horror. He is stopped by Theresa who introduces him to Charlotte Hale (Tessa Thompson), the girl he flirted with before. Turns out Charlotte is sent from corporate to make sure things don't get messier.
Theresa also broke up with Bernard this episode, while in her Hell-themed office (what the fuck was that?). Bernard later came to Theresa to talk of the whole corporate espionage thing and as he was there he got a call from Elsie, who was currently ALONE IN THE DARK CREEPY THEATER (come on, Elsie). She found computer there which was broadcasting to hosts and apparently Theresa's login was used there. But not only hers. She then discoverers something more but is grabbed by someone and I'm really hoping this is just Hemsworth 3 protecting her and all will be well.
Back to Maeve she convinces the technicians to turn her bulk apperception (overall intelligence) all the way up. And this is after they decreased the attribute. As Ramin Djawadi's outstanding creepy score hits loud notes we see Maeve, now with her intelligence on superhuman levels telling the technicians they are going to have some fun.
I really liked this episode. It added to some theories and actually made me think of some new stuff - what is up with Theresa? Her office is so villainous, we see multiple shots of her smoking like someone super stressed out...maybe she is William's fiancee? Anything is possible. She clearly has a grudge towards Ford and maybe park itself. There's gotta be more here, especially to her login being used. It's too easy of an answer.
The episode was also really creepy - the score, that shot of little Robert's face opening up, the idea of customizing an artificial being to be insanely intelligent (they are so fucked now). It was the first episode were I was worried about humans and what is going to happen to them, especially Elsie.
Next up - it's the big one. The episode that made people from EW spoiler room wanna re-watch the series. And the director of the episode says it contains a big game changer. My guess is the confirmation of two time frames, so get ready for Man in Black to be called William by someone or something like that.
The title itself means illusion - Trompe L'Oeil. Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and William (Jimmi Simpson) journey into treacherous terrain; Maeve (Thandie Newton) delivers an ultimatum; Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) considers his next move.
1x01 The Original
1x03 The Stray
1x04 Dissonance Theory