What Are the ‘Westworld’ Hosts’ Brains? Photos & Theories from Season 2 Premiere

HBO A scene from Season 1 of Westworld

Fans were given a shocking revelation about how the hosts work in the Westworld Season 2 premiere, and it all centered around the hosts’ brains. Below, we will have photos and theories about what we saw. Share your own thoughts about what it means in the comments below. This post will have major spoilers for the Season 2 premiere of Westworld. 

I’ve always thought that the hosts’ brains were maybe kind of like Data on Star Trek, where they looked a lot like a positronic brain that resembled a human brain but was all technology. Or the brains were biological and almost indistinguishable from human brains, much like the hosts’ skin and appearance. But it appears that my guesses were wrong.

During the premiere, we learn a lot in the beginning about the hosts’ brains after teh Delos Head of Operations tells an employee, in front of Bernard, that he must extract the hosts’ memories to see if they can determine what happened at the park. The employee is worried about the environment not being sterile, but he is told to do this anyway.

First he opens the skull and sees the map. It’s interesting that Delos has no idea what this map is for. Apparently they don’t know everything about how the hosts work.

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Inside the skull, it looks just like a human brain. But the employee then digs into the brain to reveal something else entirely.

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Yes, the hosts’ minds and programming do not work via a biological brain at all. Instead, it is this contraption that powers the host and holds its memories and programming.

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And this contraption can be plugged into a tablet, so you can read the hosts’ memories. It’s interesting, because Delos employees can use tablets to plug into the hosts through other means too. But perhaps this more intrusive method is needed if the host is dead/inactive?

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You can plug the host’s brain into the tablet to see his memories and experiences. After the Season 1 finale, we had a hint that this type of information would be revealed in Season 2. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, showrunner Jonathan Nolan said that how the hosts are powered will be an important element in Season 2.

“Their construction and their power source is something we’re really going to get into during season 2…,” Nolan said. “They’re closer to biological than they are to mechanical, but they don’t suffer brain death the same way we do. They’re largely indistinguishable from a human beings, but their brains don’t require oxygen — which opens up interesting possibilities… Season 2 we’ll be exploring more the nuts and bolts of what they are— as the hosts themselves are trying to understand.”

So tHBO

If you recall from the end of Season 1, when Maeve ordered Felix to bring Bernard back online, he said that Bernard’s “cortical shield” saved him from a permanent death of sorts when he shot himself in the head. We saw when they took out the brain that it was encased in some type of shielding within a biological brain lookalike in the skull. That must be the cortical shielding.

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Another view of the host’s memories.

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And that final moment, when everything starts to become clear.

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It can also be helpful to take a look at what the host’s “page” on the tablet first pulls up when the tablet is plugged into the host’s brain. Many hints could be hidden in this part.

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In Westworld, the most innocuous things can be a clue or even a hint for an ARG. Westworld has had active ARGs in the past that gave extra clues for the story, so it’s always good to pay close attention to what’s going on in the show, including things that appear on cards or computer screens. You never know what you might find or what might point your way to a new ARG.


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