Before I begin my review, and you start watching "Westworld" Season 4, let me confirm that it is important to watch the whole Season 3, especially the finale. Without it, you won't be able to get Season 4 at all, that's how much it is connected.
The fourth season begins in quite a dramatic way and almost at the same point where the post-credit scene of Season 3 left - William being allegedly killed by a lookalike host and Charlotte (Tessa Thompson), who is also a host. Hence, this is a spoiler-free review, I won't be giving bigger plot points. In the first episode, William completes a big contract by manipulating the opposite party with the help of flies, which are developed by a group of androids to control humans. William kills everyone after getting what he wanted.
The first episode reveals a lot about the current status of the characters that were last seen in the third season's finale. Dolores, now known as Christina is living a normal human life and doing a 9 to 5 job at a company called Olympiad Entertainment. She is a story writer and great at developing emotional stories. However, her life takes a shocking turn when a man alleges that whatever she is writing is turning out to be true and his life is being controlled by her. The episode explores the life of Christina further.
Whoever has seen the first three seasons of Westworld should already be aware that nothing is what seems to appear in this show. Although, the episodes I saw didn't reveal if Christina exists in reality or if all this is just in her brain. But as I progressed, Christina's story seems to suggest that all her life is a simulation and nothing is real. She could be captured by Charlotte after what happened in Season 3, but the first four episodes of Season 4 don't give any clue about Dolores' story.
Maeve, Caleb, and a few other characters return in the first episode itself, while the rest of them in the second episode. Bernard begins his journey exactly at the same point where he left in the Season 3 post-credit scene. He wakes up from deep sleep after a long-long time, and as Dolores indicated in Season 3, he is ready to serve the biggest role in saving the world.
There are multiple timelines, a lot will be revealed by the end of the fourth episode, while the rest can be expected by the end of this season. Westworld is also back into its glory, the hosts are back in the park, and the tourists are also turning up. Unlike the last two seasons, which were very straightforward in terms of understanding the timeline, Season 4 maintains a mystery and keeps the audience guessing about where the events are taking place.
Season 4 also makes the third season a crucial one. Season 3 was about Dolores going after the humans who have controlled her all her life, it showed an intriguing battle between the hosts and humans, where hosts were struggling for their survival, and big corporates were indirectly controlling every human's life. By the end of Season 3, Bernard receives a package from Dolores, and as per her, Bernard is the key to a big upcoming war and has an important role in saving the world. Some of us may have thought that it was about the survival o the hosts, but it is all about the survival of humans. In Season 4, there is only a small group of human resistance left, which is not controlled by hosts who have taken over the whole world.
Overall, Season 4 is exciting, and each episode brings a new reveal, which makes the upcoming episode more intriguing. The character development of Caleb (Aaron Paul) makes him the leading protagonist of Season 4, while Bernard remains the same as the previous ones. Evan Rachel Wood seems a bit sidelined as we keep guessing if Dolores will remember. Like all the previous three seasons, Maeve holds the key to everything. Tessa Thompson outshines everyone as the new lead antagonist Charlotte.
The only concern I had was with the writing; several lines appeared to be repetitious, especially with Dolores and Maeve, but this had no impact on the overall story. Westworld never became a bad show, even though few critics and audiences believe so. The first season was so good that it is almost impossible to match that level, it was 10 out of 10, while the second was 9/10, and the third was 8.5/10, and this is nowhere near to be called a poor rating. If Season 4 continues to be what is shown in the first four episodes, it will become the best after Season 1.
Final Score: [9.5/10]
Note: The first four episodes of the third season are screened for this review. However, I was given a screener copy with unfinished CGI, so this review doesn't comment on the quality of CGI and visuals.
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