Westworld Season 4 Episode 6, “Fidelity,” was outstanding. The standout star of the episode was Aaron Paul, as he tackled the role of multiple Calebs in multiple states of disintegration. While in some ways a simpler episode than some of the others, “Fidelity” was every bit as entertaining. I can only hope that the viewership for Season 4 is high enough to get us a fifth and final season of the series.
Caleb Has a Journey of Despair, But He Still Finds Hope
Aaron Paul as Caleb was most definitely the MVP of the episode. This man has perfect the traumatized, abused character role. I couldn’t help but remember all of the struggles Jesse Pinkman went through on Breaking Bad, as I watched Caleb being kidnapped and tortured in the latest episode.
Caleb’s journey is one of despair. How can he even find hope in a situation that seems to have no escape?
Charlotte is putting him through a fidelity test over and over, and his host body is continually breaking down. He only has a small amount of time where he can live — and a small amount of time for Charlotte to try to understand what makes outliers tick.
And although Caleb is seemingly stuck in an endless loop of torture, his latest iteration has still found a reason to hope. He struggled to send a message to his daughter, Frankie. It was only a message of encouragement and love — which is exactly what a loving father would do in his situation.
It’s wonderful to see just how much faith Caleb has in Frankie. He’s saddened that he couldn’t spare her from this terrible world. But he has full faith that she will succeed where he did not. He has hope for the future, simply because he knows that she is alive and fighting.
— Grand Dame of Jen Shah's Court Case (@granddamee) August 1, 2022
Aaron Paul was amazing portraying the different iterations of Caleb. The ones who were breaking apart and in extreme pain. The one that was almost passed out and was willing to sacrifice himself so Caleb could live. Each one was the same and yet unique. This must have been a challenging episode to film.
And that last scene really knocked it out of the park. When Caleb told Charlotte-as-Dolores (Halores) that the outliers weren’t contaminating her hosts at all — her hosts simply wanted to escape her. She has them all locked down in a world of her choosing. And though she’s given them a semblance of freedom, the hosts who hunt down outliers are still just as controlled as Rehoboam controlled Caleb. And to these hosts, the only means of escape is death.
The torture this man went throu, DAMN
— Sweetness (@conezzy18) August 1, 2022
It was cathartic to see Halores’ expression when Caleb delivered this news. A mixture of horror and anger. But what can she do to change this reality?
Tessa Thompson Is Perfect as Halores
While I’m pouring praise onto Paul’s performance, I can’t leave out how amazing Tessa Thompson has been as Halores. I truly despise her character, which shows just how well she’s playing the role.
Halores is the bored god who is disappointed in her creation. She abhors humanity, and she keeps seeing her creation mimic the beings that she can’t stand the most. She wants to give the hosts perfection and freedom, but only her kind of perfection and freedom.
Last week she berated Host William for not being as good at his role as his human counterpart would have been. It was an interesting and surprising moment of believing a human was actually better than a host. Of course, that sent Host William into quite the tailspin.
It’s hard to believe that Halores really is Dolores. In some ways, I can’t help but think that her Wyatt programming has seeped into her current iteration. Perhaps her anger at her family’s death and her anger at Dolores allowed that Wyatt side of her to gain a deeper foothold.
In fact, that reminds me of the scene that showed her scratching at her own skin. It’s reminiscent of how the Caleb iterations begin tearing off their own skin when they’re in cognitive decline. It appears that Halores is in her own version of cognitive decline — perhaps from denying the Dolores side of her so strongly?
Bernard & Frankie’s Story Was Compelling
Caleb might have stolen the show, but Bernard and Frankie’s story was still quite compelling. (And can we just all appreciate how sad Stubbs’ role is? There were iterations of the timeline where he was the mole that Charlotte replaced!)
First, we started out jumping into the past when Caleb’s wife was still alive and Frankie was a child. It was a chilling scene. It appears that it didn’t take long for Charlotte to capture humanity, and little has changed since then. We were introduced to how Jay joined the resistance, so that finding out he’s the mole would hurt a little more.
I also enjoyed watching Bernard’s revelation of how the park moved from scanning through hats to scanning through mirrors — a change that really does make perfect sense. Watching him rebuild Maeve (while Ford’s theme played in the background) was a nice nostalgic touch.
But what really stood out to me was when Bernard took Frankie into the “underbelly” of the park and it was all full of sand and falling apart. It reminded me so much of the state of the lab when William woke up and found himself undergoing fidelity testing. I wonder if he is going to be tested here or in a similar location. Perhaps Charlotte decides to revive him when her Host William (whom I don’t think underwent fidelity testing) doesn’t meet her expectations. I think that scene really did hold some substantial clues about the Season 2 epilogue scene.
Oh, and let’s not forget how wonderful the Maeve and Frankie team-up is going to be!
— ~ (@richonnescamino) August 1, 2022
Overall, this was an amazing episode. There were a lot of complex and tense moments to explore. I did miss seeing William and seeing Christina and Teddy’s story. But the episode held its own, even without those storylines.