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HBO: WESTWORLD SEASON 2
#71
FYI to anyone who hasn't resubbed to HBO yet, Hulu emailed me a deal to get the HBO add on for 4.99/month for 6 months to help push Westworld. Not sure if this offer is available to everyone. Wasn't planning on getting the channel again until Thrones returns next year, might bite though
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#72
That did not disappoint.

Only quibble is that we didn't get enough Ed Harris. His scene with Young Ford was the highlight of the night.
I can't stand to see myself go through the motions, that bring me back into these same old sad emotions.
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#73
I dug it. It is such an interesting world and ends on a great hook for the next episode.
"Wilford Brimley can't be bothered to accept praise. He doesn't act because he thinks people will enjoy his work. He acts because it's his goddamned job." --Will Harris, AV Club
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#74
Great use of their time perspective antics, while also moving stuff along. Adding just enough mystery and questions to hook ya. And agreed, the William/Young Ford was tops.
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#75
God, yes, that scene between William and Host Young Ford.

I hope the new Security Goon from Delos gets fleshed out a bit.

And I hope we're not about to spend ten hours of Maeve looking for her daughter, but I suspect we are.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#76
I spent had to pause the episode halfway through and consult IMDB to confirm that the new Delos tech guy was not the dancing "nice hat/GIMME DA CAAAAAASH!!!" guy from The Fifth Element.
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#77
Yeah, "Gimme the caaaasssshh" guy is Mathieu Kassovitz, French actor/director.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#78
Dolores was the highlight of the week for me, especially the way she slipped from Rancher’s Daughter to Wyatt to ‘awakened’ Dolores in the hanging scene and her horror movie description of humans as ‘the things that walk among us.’
Very strong start.
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#79
The offline drones were my favorite bit of production design and worldbuilding.

They also strongly hint at the placement of the park(s) in calling it an island and with the Chinese military presence.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#80
(04-23-2018, 10:53 AM)MichaelM Wrote: The offline drones were my favorite bit of production design and worldbuilding.

They also strongly hint at the placement of the park(s) in calling it an island and with the Chinese military presence.

I don't know exactly what it is, but man, those Drones were one of the creepiest things I've seen in a good long while.  Took a swan-dive into the Uncanny Valley in just the perfect way for me.  Must be something about the bio-mechanical look of them that just hits me right in the hairs-on-the-back-of-the-neck stand up sweet spot.

I would take odds on one or more of those Drones doing something spectacularly violent before the end of the season but I'm pretty sure that's a given....if for no other reason than how striking they will appear while streaked and splattered with blood and viscera.

Unrelated side note:  Housemate and I reminded ourselves of the fact that Teddy's last set of programming had him set up as "Wyatt's" arch-enemy.  Can't help but wonder if that will end up being significant to the narrative this season....
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#81
I'm finding it hard to form an emotional connection with almost anything from that first episode. The characters are, by their nature, schizophrenic and unreliable agents. The degree to which they're human seems to vary according to the needs of the episode or individual scene. They're viewed through a lens of narrative and editing that adds an additional layer of unreliability. The episode opens with the hosts getting provocatively executed with firearms, which registers to me as a hollow attempt to shock the audience. Bernard spends the entire episode in a state of confusion or inaction. Dolores seems to be continuing to do whatever it is she's doing, for whatever reasons. Maeve is now going to search for her child despite her (and the audience) knowing that it's not really her child and that her memories/experiences are highly suspect. Ed Harris is presumably going to continue on treating the park as a video game, only now he's on a harder difficulty I guess? The world building is something that I feel I can latch onto, as it feels tangible in a way that the characters do not, but this is still a show that invents everything from new umbrella corporations to carving canyons and filling seas in order to inject intrigue on an as-needed basis.
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#82
Great premiere. William having his Henry Fonda in Once Upon a Time in the West moment with the robot kid was cold-blooded. The apocalyptic dread of the aftermath of Journey Into Night was divine.

Also, I've long resisted "Next on..." and "This season on..." teasers since 24 gave away the episode where Jack gets tortured with that saw a week early, but the shot of Maeve dressed as a geisha, clutching a katana like she's fucking Toshiro Mifune, was the epitome of OH FUCK.

Bring it.
"PREDATOR 2 feels like it was penned by convicts as part of a correctional facility's creative writing program, and that's what I love about it." - Moltisanti
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#83
I enjoyed this new episode a lot. Relentless forward momentum combined with picking up the pieces, setting up the series/season arcs, and the promise of more of our favorite characters doing cool shit. No complaints here.

I watched all the 1st season episodes twice as they aired, but I think I will need a refresher on a few things, hehe. All the convoluted Wyatt business, the multiple town massacre fladhbacks, and the reason for present-day Doloris' state of mind have all disappeared from my brain.

Great to see Floki from Vikings as the Delos crisis manager guy!
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#84
I loved the fact that this wasn't a "several weeks later" kind of thing but instead dropped us right into the immediate aftermath of last season's finale. Really gave the episode a sense of momentum. Loved the final shot too. Great all around set-up for this season.
My karmic debt must be huge.

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My blog: An Embarrassment of Rich's
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#85
(04-25-2018, 08:14 PM)Richard Dickson Wrote: I loved the fact that this wasn't a "several weeks later" kind of thing but instead dropped us right into the immediate aftermath of last season's finale.  Really gave the episode a sense of momentum.  Loved the final shot too.  Great all around set-up for this season.


They did both, actually.  Because of course they would.
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#86
Yeah, I loved that too.
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#87
Really liked episode 2.
- I'm glad we're getting some actual backstory on how Delos got involved and funded the place. I also liked the exploration of the family dynamic.
- I thought that Evan Rachel Wood was particularly strong in this episode, especially in her flashback sequences with Arnold and at the demonstration(s) for the Delos family. Strong work.
- I dig the fact that Dolores is 'resurrecting' dead hosts along the way and bringing them into her army. As a counterpoint, I also enjoy the fact that Ed Harris isn't allowed to do any recruiting. Having the ghost of Ford have all of those hosts commit suicide rather than join his quest was a great moment.

This is progressing nicely.
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#88
(04-30-2018, 09:23 AM)Judas Booth Wrote: As a counterpoint, I also enjoy the fact that Ed Harris isn't allowed to do any recruiting.  Having the ghost of Ford have all of those hosts commit suicide rather than join his quest was a great moment.

I did NOT see that coming, either. Well played.

I wonder who they got to do the Anthony Hopkins voice in that one scene. It was a pretty good impression.

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#89
I bet that they got Hopkins to do it. I bet that they sent him a bunch of lines and he ended up recording them in a half hour in his garden one afternoon.

I also would not be surprised to find out that Hopkins was on set this season. Having him appear, de-aged, for one episode would be a cool stinger in one of the last episodes.
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#90
Photo 
Just throwing this out there that Bernard's house is a riff on Frank Lloyd Wright's Ennis House - AKA Deckard's apartment in Blade Runner.  The music cues are also obvious riffs on Vangelis' score.  And the Westworld Command Center - it's a riff on Wright's Marin Civic Center from THX 1138 and Gattica.  The idea of incorporating the natural surrounding is an important part of the Civic Center's design - the domes and towers are supposed to mimic the nearby hills and trees - get it?  The center is "hidden" the mountain.  Frank Lloyd Wright's existential artistic philosphy was adapted by Ayn Rand into the Fountainhead - a story with similar class-struggle and BDSM elements.

[Image: 2abb4f9a974960bda624c8a77cf6aa49--san-ra...county.jpg][Image: 6784623382_c122d9af4a_b.jpg]

Also noticing a lot of parallels between the brutalist architecture and the Lament Configuration. The cubes in Bernard's apartment are obnoxiously bigger than the real Ennis house from Deckard's apartment. The blocks grow upward, but the design is repeated inward - movement upwards to God through reflection and inward movement. Kind of adds an extra layer of homoeroticsm if you imagine the architecture in BR as a bondage dungeon as Batty chases Deckard - the maze is massive, reflective, and only escapable by movement upward, surrendering to pain and death.
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#91
Renewed for Season 3.
http://variety.com/2018/tv/news/westworl...202794092/
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#92
So far, I've liked the split timelines because it feels like the information we're getting informs the present. It doesn't feel like fan or story wankery. So far.

It feels very different from S1, which is a good thing. I'm glad they aren't trying to just ape themselves or stick with a single tone.

I'm LOVING Ed Harris' storyline. And I'm wondering it Teddy breaks from Dolores' murder hobo path.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#93
So they're doing the "mysterious place in the center of the park that holds all the answers that is only three days ride away" plot again?
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#94
Liking this season well enough so far. Great looking, semi-intriguing shit wrapped up a bunch of dreamy faux profundity. So more of the same as S1. Peter Mullan joining the cast almost makes up for the lack of Hopkins. Could do with a lot less Ben Barnes though. I think it was Cylon in the Netflix Punisher thread who perfectly described him as always coming across like a passive aggressive maître d' and I just can't get that out of my mind whenever he's on screen.
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#95
Ben Barnes is just the worst.
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#96
...the best at being the worst!
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#97
It was cool to see the Gus Fring host....
I used to be with "it", but then they changed what "it" was. Now, what I'm with isn't "it", and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me. -Grandpa Simpson
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#98
Just wrapped up the third episode. I love that the flashbacks are tightly structured and add directly to the narrative, as I don't think the "mystery box" strategy of season one could (or should) be replicated.

Other random thoughts:

--Evan Rachel Wood is great as the beleaguered, lost, pained Dolores. She is great as the replicant Dolores (she looked amazing during that N.Y. skyline flashback). She is completely out of her depth as the revolutionary leader Dolores. It is becoming painful. I really hope they structure her role differently so that she doesn't continue in that vein. Maybe they're going for her being completely unbelievable, and if so, they're succeeding. Literally every character she interacts with in that dynamic is outdoing her.

--Thandie Newton's story, which I found mostly filler in S1, has become riveting. Every time they cut away I'm like "drat, I wanted more!"

--If I had complete carte blanche to design Westworld style parks, I must admit that the notion of late 1800s/early 1900s British colonial controlled India is not one of the first that would come to mind. I mean, it's a pretty interesting time period, cool and exotic milieu, but that seems oddly specific. Then again, now that we know it existed, think of the possibilities! Thugee cults, exotic temples, etc. The actress they've introduced is goddamn fascinating and, much like Newton, I am pissed every time they cut away from her story.

--Jeffrey Wright needs to get over this "out of sorts" tic/illness/programming problem real fast cause it's getting really tired visually and not advancing the plot.

--Dolores has seen the outside world. Unless her memory is flawed, she didn't really understand what she was seeing, or she can't count, she should know an armed conflict with humans is destined to fail.

--The lack of Ed Harris in episode 3 is not acceptable. The Harris, Newton, and S&M hunter woman feel like they could each be their own shows.

--The trained military personnel who made the frontal assault on the defended encampment are about the dumbest fucking people imaginable. Whoever was responsible for their tactics should be immediately fired.
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#99
I was so fucking pumped to see Armistice return. The flamethrower was just extra gravy.
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- Disagree on Wood as Revolutionary Dolores. I think she's killing it. No, she doesn't have the physical presence you'd expect but she does have presence and projects confidence and power.

- Agree on Maeve's story this season. I continue to LOVE them putting Sizemore with Maeve and Hector. It's such a great combo of characters. I was happy to see Felix again but I feel like he and Sylvester are going to be drags on the energy. I was fully expecting (and hoping) that Maeve or Hector would kill Sylvester outright, as there's no way he won't turn on them as soon as he can, and Maeve knows it.

-ARMISTICE! WITH A FLAMETHROWER! I'm in love.

- My assumption at this point is that the Colonial India park is meant to reinforce the themes of privilege and slavery, the powerful being blind to the sins of their pleasures. We'll see.

- S&M Hunter Woman, I want to have your babies.

- Agreed that Bernard's story needs to progress. Him being confused and essentially useless is dragging.

- Agreed that Dolores is assuming her glimpse of the outside is accurate to what it all entails is ridiculous....but she's also still remarkably naive despite being awake and aware. I have to assume that this hubris is intentional.

- TBH I didn't notice the lack of Old William/MIB, but now that you point it out, I agree.

- Agreed that a frontal assault in a line formation was staggeringly dumb.

- I'm going to have to try and watch all three episodes before the next one because I'm beginning to get confused with the timelines, esp. with Bernard and Hale.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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ERW's performance as Revolutionary Dolores is definitely a strange one. She's going for a deliberately flattened affect, I don't know if it's bad, but it's very hard to get a hold on whatever it is.

And I still don't buy Jimmi Simpson as a young Ed Harris in any shape or form.
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(05-08-2018, 08:25 AM)MichaelM Wrote: - Disagree on Wood as Revolutionary Dolores. I think she's killing it. No, she doesn't have the physical presence you'd expect but she does have presence and projects confidence and power.

I mean ... c'mon.  She's portraying it really oddly and it just isn't working.  Hale, S&M Hunter woman, Thandie, they're far more compelling.  Evan Rachel Wood was cast perfectly for Season One ... I'm getting the sense they never bothered to audition or screen test her for her character's eventual arc, because this is simply painful.  She projects neither confidence, nor power, and her presence is flat and strangely affected.

- My assumption at this point is that the Colonial India park is meant to reinforce the themes of privilege and slavery, the powerful being blind to the sins of their pleasures. We'll see.

The name "Rajworld" that was coined on reddit is perfect.

- S&M Hunter Woman, I want to have your babies.

The actress's name is Katja Gerbers.  You're welcome.  So fetch.  She's like Hayley Atwell mixed with Kate Mara.

- Agreed that Bernard's story needs to progress. Him being confused and essentially useless is dragging.

It's painful and brings the show to a screeching halt every time.  

- Agreed that Dolores is assuming her glimpse of the outside is accurate to what it all entails is ridiculous....but she's also still remarkably naive despite being awake and aware. I have to assume that this hubris is intentional.

Which might work, if the actress was actually selling her portrayal.

- Agreed that a frontal assault in a line formation was staggeringly dumb.

It's moments like that (The Walking Dead is the all-time king in the modern era of dumb gunplay) which really make me question how shows with this many people working on them, with these kinds of budgets, can't get someone who took an undergrad level course in military history to prevent scenes like that from happening.  Keep in mind that they hid the explosives in plain sight IN THE EXACT AREA THAT THE ENEMY WOULD BE SHOOTING AT!  Good thing a stray bullet didn't blow them all up ...

- I'm going to have to try and watch all three episodes before the next one because I'm beginning to get confused with the timelines, esp. with Bernard and Hale.

The timelines seem to fluctuate from day after massacre to weeks after massacre.

See responses, above.

(05-08-2018, 10:34 AM)atomtastic Wrote: ERW's performance as Revolutionary Dolores is definitely a strange one. She's going for a deliberately flattened affect, I don't know if it's bad, but it's very hard to get a hold on whatever it is.

That's a good way to put it.  I'm going to steal that and not give you credit.  I don't know what she's going for and it doesn't help that almost everyone she interacts with just literally blows her away in terms of screen presence.  Compare her to the actress playing Armistice (who accomplishes more in a few seconds of screen-time) to immediately see what's going wrong.

And I still don't buy Jimmi Simpson as a young Ed Harris in any shape or form.

It's ludicrous.  And I am so tired of people saying it doesn't strain the suspension of disbelief to portray an adult Jimmi Simpson somehow turning into Ed Harris.  They look and sound nothing alike and I hate being reminded that the first season's central conceit rested almost entirely on casting two actors who don't resemble each other.  

See responses, above.
[Image: latest?cb=20130405010724]
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In Episode 2, I could see Simpson really trying to go for a Harris surety/don't fuck with me vibe.

Trying, I said.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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This season is desperately lacking in Hopkins ham.
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If my guess about that mystery ball/digital brain is right, we might be getting more yet.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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