Caution! This article contains spoilers for the season one finale of Westworld, so proceed at your own risk.
About halfway through tonight's Westworld finale, it was really unclear as to which way this was going to go.
As much sense as it made, I couldn't help but go "oh, come on" as the Man in Black revealed himself to be none other than William, who now basically owns the park, 30 years and a lot of hard drinking (and raping, which we cannot forget) later. The internet had pretty much already figured that out, along with the accompanying fact that we were watching multiple timelines play out at the same time, and we feared we were in for a night of feeling pressured to gasp at twists we had already come to terms with.
Luckily for all of us, things got a little more interesting after that.
Maeve: Despite the fact that Bernard informed her that someone had intentionally told her to try to escape the park, Maeve continued on that mission and actually did it. With some badass help from Felix, Hector, Snake tattoo girl, and a whole lot of gunfire (and finger biting, and stabbing, etc etc), Maeve made it all the way to the train that would take her away from Westworld. She was free, except for that memory of her daughter that Felix couldn't remove, without destroying Maeve's entire personality.
Then, when she sat across from a woman and her daughter on the train, she decided to head back up the escalators and find her robot daughter, who, thanks to Felix, she knew could be found in "park 1."
That, along with the fact that Maeve and her little crew found a whole floor full of samurais in a wing labeled "SW," leads us to believe there are many parks, and probably many more seasons of this show we could enjoy.
Now the big question, other than what the heck is she going to do next in order to get into the Park 1, is who messed with her code?
The Maze: Turns out the maze was not a real maze, but was just a game to help Dolores become fully conscious by realizing she was actually hearing her own voice in her head, and not Arnold's. How these things connect is not entirely clear, unless it's just a metaphor. In that case, cool, but either way, the Man in Black/William was not having it.
He was extremely angry that the maze was useless to him, despite how everyone kept telling him it was useless to him, and then decided that he could still win whatever game he thought he was playing by just finally meeting the one character he had never been able to find—Wyatt.
Wyatt: Surprise! Wyatt was actually Dolores! In order to allow the park to open and keep all of the hosts from becoming conscious, she had to kill them all, and also Arnold.
The Arnold situation: We knew that Dolores killed Arnold, and tonight we found out why. However, this entire show was confusing, so bear with us.
Arnold had figured out the secret to making the hosts conscious, and knew that he couldn't open a theme park and allow guests to murder (etc etc) fully conscious beings, especially when those beings could recall their former grudges thanks to the reveries in their code. He tried to get Ford to delay the opening, but Ford wasn't having it, because this was his dream and no one will deny this man his dream, apparently.
So Arnold instructed Dolores to kill all of the other hosts, and himself, in order to allow the park to open and to make sure the stakes were real and so that he could see his son again.
So how did it all end?
Ford invited all of the park's investors to come watch his new narrative, which involved Dolores dying on the beach in Teddy's arms, and then hosted a party. After a chat with Ford and Bernard where she found out how Arnold had altered her and given her the Wyatt narrative, Dolores finally realized that she had just been talking to herself the whole time, and basically fully woke up.
She then took her favorite gun, which Ford left for her, and shot up the party, starting with Ford, while William and the hosts looked on and smiled.
Weirdly, we'd actually be OK if the series ended here. But since we know we're getting a season two, guess it's time to read up on samurais!
What did you think of the finale? What did we miss? Sound off in the comments!
Westworld will return to HBO in 2018.