Sat. Jun 3rd, 2023
How does it feel to have written the programs that cause you to experience emotional pain?  Not that great actually.
enlarge / How does it feel to have written the programs that cause you to experience emotional pain? Not that great actually.


Of this week west world, “Trace Decay”, finally made me believe in all the fan theories. (Spoilers ahead.)

Yes, there are multiple timelines. Yes, right now anyone can be a robot. All you have to do is play this show like a game and test each theory until proven otherwise. My guest this week, game developer Jane McGonigal, agrees. McGonigal is the author of two books, Reality is broken and Super Better, which are about how gaming can improve our real lives. And she has a lot of thoughts about the game world of western world, plus a theory you’ve probably never heard before.

Topics discussed: why the MIB is really looking for the maze (it wants a game with consequences), what makes Westworld’s gameplay so unsatisfactory (no Minecraft element in it), Jane’s so-crazy-it-would-be theory about who the MIB really is (and what the maze really is!), how many timelines are floating around in Dolores’ head (yes, we’re finally getting to the idea of ​​multiple timelines), whether it’s cheating on your partner if you have sex with a robot (it’s more complicated than you might think), how many people are actually robots (it could be anyone), Maeve’s incredible new story-changing skills (she’s now the ultimate gamer), the tragedy of loops (and the horror of memory), how? west world invites viewers to interact with the series like it’s a game (and stay up late reading theories on Reddit), and whether there’s anything inherently limiting about the Western narrative (maybe we’ll be on Futureworld soon) to see?).

I am analyzing, debating and dissecting west world every week with a different guest, and on Tuesdays we post the podcast. The episodes air on Sunday, so you have plenty of time to watch before we get into major spoilers. Yes, there are spoilers. Listen when you’re done!


decoded is Ars Technica’s weekly podcast about the TV that obsesses us. We are currently dissecting west world. Listen or subscribe above, and let us know what you think – ideas, questions, or your favorite theory about whether there are still people in Westworld – via the comment section, on iTunes or via email.

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By akfire1

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