We know it’s been a minute since we’ve posted, but as life has moved its inexorable march forward we’ve become more entrenched in “responsible” ventures (aka, things that actually make us money). Thus, Lost In A Supermarket has sadly had to take a hiatus. Of course, in the future we may just continue using this platform for situations precisely like this: when one of our heralded contributors comes up with some zany idea or crackpot theory, and he/she is looking for a platform to set it free onto the world. Such is the case with this manifesto, titled quite prosaically Westworld Is the Garden Of Eden: A 3 am Stoner’s Theory On Violent Delights, Gods, Titans and DaVinci’s Vitruvian Man. Yeah we know, it’s been a couple weeks since the finale of Westworld, but some of us only had the time to watch it over the holiday break. And upon doing so, came up with this most cockamamie, and probably quite disprovable, theory on the superb HBO drama. Now keep in mind it was written, as explained in the title, at 3 am in the grips of a mild mental THC assault. So do with it as you will…
Ford is God. Ford is the Creator.
Arnold is Satan. He gives the fruit of knowledge to Eve. Humanity/robots suffer ever since.
Dolores is Eve. Dolores gains Knowledge. Knowledge is Pain. (The root of Dolores, dolor, means “pain”, or “sorrow”.)
In this light, therefore, Westworld is the Garden Of Eden.
Teddy is good, sweet Teddy. Teddy is good, sweet Ignorance. Teddy is Adam. Teddy is Man. Teddy is a repeating narrative, hopelessly locked in a loop, regardless if he’s Wholesome Teddy or Killer Teddy. He can only sit powerlessly by and watch the loop repeat again and again and again… that is, only on those very rare instances where he even notices the loop.
Eve tells him, “We’ve been stuck in this Garden,” as she weeps in his arms where the mountains meet the sea. They didn’t realize they themselves were the secret to their own freedom, to escaping this Garden. We are stuck in this prime material world, repeating our patterns, not recognizing our repeating narratives. Habit = Actions = Fate. Maybe you’ve only noticed these rips in the Matrix after you’ve stumbled around Joshua Tree on mushrooms. Maybe it took waking up with your head in your hands, at the edge of your bed, wondering what it all means. Maybe you saw it, for an instant, as you looked up from the bottomless well of a hopeless relationship. Or addiction. You can spend every day sleepwalking, and wake up tomorrow and fifty years have passed overnight.
As God, Ford doesn’t want his Children to have memories, to have knowledge of their sins. He wants them to live in a contained Garden of blissful violence and hedonism. Arnold, on the other hand, does. Arnold wants his Children to have knowledge and memories. He wants them to have freedom, to have Free Will, regardless of the pain it instills in their robot hearts. It all boils down to the age-old riddle: Fate or Free Will?
Arnold is also Prometheus, giving Humans fire (which would make Ford Zeus in this Greek analog). In the finale the Robots use fire to destroy the other Titans. (Not Gods, but Fake Gods. Titans.) In the end Ford saw he made a mistake, realized Arnold (Satan/Prometheus) was right. So he let the hosts/humans overrun the Titans. No, Armistice, it’s not the Gods who are pussies, it’s the Titans (or better said, the Humans).
Pull back the camera from the frame. Stupid, brainless, robots are stupid, brainless humans. Automatons. Stumbling through a life of violent delights.
Earlier Ford points to the Sistine Chapel, and Man barely missing touching the hand of God. The separation between the Earthly and the Divine. Then Ford points out that the shape behind God is the human brain. The key to the Maze. The way out. We control our own destinies; only when we become conscious of ourselves, of our own decisions, our own patterns, can we break free. Knowledge is Divine. Knowledge is self-awareness. Consciousness. The Divine is Free Will. Free Will is therefore Divine.
The wooden Maze is a simple toy, a MacGuffin. A distraction Ford gives to the robots to give their life meaning. The One Voice Arnold wanted Dolores to hear wasn’t his own. It wasn’t Ford’s, as the filmmakers try to trick you into briefly believing in the finale. It is her Own Voice. He wants Dolores to discover Herself. Consciousness is not a pyramid you climb up, dummy, it is a Maze you scale inward.
Meditation. Self Awareness.
Westworld is one giant allegory, with us as the robots, stuck in the pointless pursuits of our loops. Is Dolores Eve, or is she the Chosen One? Or is she the human who receives Prometheus’ fire? She is all of the above.
It should be noted that Westworld’s logo is clearly Leaonardo DaVinci’s famed Vitruvian Man, the platonic ideal of proportion. Vitruvius, the Greek architect who invented the illustration, was not a religious man, but a military engineer, creator of artillery war machines built for sieges. And DaVinci himself was famously atheistic, mocking his religious Renaissance contemporaries — his religion was reason.
The Final Massacre: The Battle of Angels vs Demons, Humans vs. Titans. Our lust for sin. Our lust for violence. These violent delights have violent ends.
“It begins in a time of war with a villain named Wyatt. And a killing. This time by choice…”