Location is a key factor in HBO’s newest show Westworld. Deep-pocketed guests are whisked back in time to the Old West, where they can carry out their wildest, most savage fantasies on the park’s seemingly endless number of robotic hosts. The show spends half of its time aboveground, with the other half focused on the puppet-master characters behind the scenes, watching and ensuring that the hosts exist day-to-day in the predetermined loops that guide their programming. They make the robot hosts and pull the strings from within a highly secretive, 14-level lab that, according to the show’s DelosIncorporated.com viral site, is located in the side of a gigantic mountain.
While the Delos site does offer a small glimpse into the functions of each level, hardcore fans will want a lot more info. Luckily, we have you covered.
Let’s descend down the levels of Westworld, shall we?
Mesa Gold is a “decompression chamber” where guests go to stay after they’re lived out their violent delights in the park; it also seems like the employees hang out there to take in the beautiful views.
Dr. Robert Ford is such a baller/weirdo that he even has his own personal host piano player. Unfortunately, the rest of his office is somehow even creepier, whether it’s the host face molds behind him or all the animal skulls scattered about. Dude is anything but subtle.
Executive Living Quarters
Head honchos like Bernard get some swanky digs while rotated into their Westworld tour. Their living areas are straight out of an Ikea catalogue.
This is where it all goes down. The Control Room is replete with an interactive map so programming and operations heads can make sure everything is shipshape … until it isn’t.
We haven’t seen any real administrative offices yet besides the Episode 3 jaunt into Ford’s personal Westworld space. Considering Theresa Cullen is always skulking around everyone else’s offices, we at least need to see where she gets things done down the line.
Narrative & Design
We haven’t seen too much of this space, but Sizemore’s failed new narrative “Odyssey on Red River” — which Ford denounces almost immediately — is enough for us. Better to stay in the part instead of potential new variations on it behind the scenes.
Here’s where we’ve spent most of our time, and god knows we’ve seen more than enough naked robot butts sitting on stools than necessary. The cold, open, and desolate nature of this space really contrasts the lush landscapes of the park. Production designer Zack Grobler told Inverse, that “the design of the lab had to be clinical,” and that “with the biological and the medical world, you also start to have to get cleanliness and you have to get medical facility has to be quite clean.”
The marketing of the show is built around the Vitruvian Man-like basic structure of a Westworld host, which is covered in the milky substance that gives them their form. Mother’s milk is too good of a metaphor in Westworld to pass up, but it makes for an interesting design detail. VFX head Jay Worth told Inverse it was made of a glue and water substance.
In Episode 2, we got to see where all the quote-unquote “dead” hosts go after they’ve been dispatched by trigger-happy guests, and it isn’t pretty. Maeve discovers that her fellow automatons are rounded up, hosed off, and spiffed up before being put back into service.
We dont really know exactly what the Archives refer to just yet, and maybe we’ll find out in future episodes, but we imagine they’d look like the labyrinthine escalator structures that connect all of the levels of the Mesa Gold facility.
Arrivals Monorail Terminal
Grobler told Inverse that in designing the train that brings people to Westworld, he was influenced by Elon Musk’s idea for the Hyperloop, as well as magnetic levitation trains.
Old Disused Facilities
We also haven’t seen the extent of the disused facilities yet, though talk of an incident from 30 years ago points to the idea that Westworld has abandoned previous incarnations before. The scene from the premiere episode where Bernard is lead to the lower levels of Mesa Gold by Ashley Stubbs and his security force shows an abandoned visitor’s center. What else is the structure hiding?
The lowest and saddest level of the park. Something tells us the fleet of decommissioned hosts here might not stay put for long.
Photos via DelosIncorporated.com, GIPHY