REVIEW: Westworld – “Trompe L’Oeil”


The following is a spoiler review of the seventh episode of Westworld – Developed by Jonathan Nolan & Lisa Joy

In the seventh episode of Westworld, Theresa (played by Sidse Babett Knudsen) and Charlotte (played by Tessa Thompson) meet to discuss a presentation, William (played by Jimmi Simpson), Dolores (played by Evan Rachel Wood), and El Lazo (played by Clifton Collins, Jr.) are attacked by Confederados, and Maeve (played by Thandie Newton) looks for Clementine (played by Angela Sarafyan).

“Don’t worry, Bernard. I’m sure it’ll get easier next week. Right?” – From my review of The Adversary.

Damn. Sorry, Bernard. Let’s just talk about his story arc this episode at the top of the review. So, he loses Elsie – a friend and confidant – he loses his job, and he is revealed to be just another host. Another rollercoaster ride for Bernard. I’m getting dizzy, myself. Sometimes fan theories are dead wrong, but, while I haven’t been writing about the theory in my weekly reviews, I’ve been subscribing to the theory that Bernard may be a host for a couple of weeks now.

There’s been a lot of talk about whether or not fan theories can ruin a show for you, and during this episode I was worried that maybe the joy of a reveal had already been spoiled for me. The opening of the episode with the flashback seemed odd, and I think it was pretty obvious, to anyone who had heard of the theory, where his story arc was going this episode.

But I’m happy to say that the fantastic reveal itself wasn’t ruined for me. When Bernard says he doesn’t see any door your jaw drops. You definitely know where things are going, even if you’ve never heard about that theory before. I also thought that the line that truly confirmed it -“It doesn’t look like anything to me.” – couldn’t have been more perfect.

Speaking of theories, I’m thinking that Ford, himself, may be a robot (time for the tinfoil-hats). There’s just something odd about the way he said “you people,” in this episode. We’ll see. To be honest, I think I’d prefer it if Ford was just human.

Also, now we have to question everything Bernard has witnessed this season. I mean, can we even trust the photograph of Ford and – who we presume is – Arnold earlier in the season, knowing that Ford showed it to Bernard?

It sucks that we may lose Sidse Babett Knudsen now, as Ford made Bernard kill Theresa, but, at the very least, Knudsen got to act with Hopkins in two of the best scenes in the show this season. I’m still hoping that we can keep Knudsen in the show somehow. Maybe Ford could make a Theresa-host to fool Delos? Who knows.

In any case, Sidse Babett Knudsen deserves a lot of praise for her performance in this episode. The final confirmation wouldn’t have worked as well without her performance, which seems very challenging as she had to go through an emotional rollercoaster ride even more dangerous than the one Bernard has been going through from week to week.

Trompe L’Oeil was, easily, my favorite episode in the series so far. Another reason why is the excellent chase sequence between the Confederados and William and Dolores. It was absolutely thrilling. We really didn’t get a lot with these characters, other than this sequence and seeing William – finally – hook up with Dolores, but I loved what we got to see here.

Maeve became ‘Super Maeve’ at the end of last week’s episode, and she’s already becoming more ‘powerful,’ so to speak. It was really unsettling and nerve-racking to see Maeve have to stand absolutely still so as to not be noticed by the park technicians in the saloon. We pretty much expected Maeve to want to rebel in some way, shape, or form, so we can’t really be surprised that she wants to leave. and I want her story arc to get moving soon, though, preferably in the next episode.

Finally, let’s briefly talk about the title of the episode. Sometimes they can be pretty difficult to understand, but Trompe L’Oeil is pretty straightforward. It means ‘deceives the eye,’ and is a pretty clear reference to the fact that Bernard was unable to see the door in the Ford-house.


– Jeffrey Rex

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