The first season of Westworld gave us a truly great meme in the form of “Doesn’t look like anything to me.” Those words, which the robot Hosts are programmed to say whenever they see something that goes beyond their Wild West experience (like a picture of Times Square or a schematic of how that Host was built), quickly caught fire on Reddit and other websites where memes get mass produced. Now, in its second-to-last episode, Westworld Season 2 finally gave us an equally great meme of its own: “Nice try Ford.”
Confused? That’s not surprising considering that we’re talking about Westworld, a show where nothing ever really makes sense even after they’ve explained it. Still, I’ll do my best to catch you up to speed on the show’s new meme.
Spoilers for Westworld Season 2 Episode 9 ahead.
For most of Westworld Season 2, Ed Harris’s character, The Man in Black (aka William), has been wandering around the park trying to solve a final puzzle left behind by Ford (played Anthony Hopkins). Ford died at the end of Season 1, but he left behind a series of clues and messages, often embedded inside various Hosts throughout the park so they can be passed along to William.
So it makes sense that The Man in Black is a little suspicious when his daughter shows up out of nowhere and he assumes it’s just another trick set in place by Ford. At the end of Episode 9, it’s still unclear whether that was really William’s daughter or just a robot replacement. What is clear, however, is that William killed her (it?) in a fit of paranoia.
His final words to his daughter (maybe not final, but definitely one of the last things he said to her) wasn’t even directed at her. Instead, he spoke directly to the ghost that’s been hovering over Westworld all season long and said, “Nice try Ford” before shooting his daughter point blank.
And so a meme was born.
The basic meaning of “Nice try Ford” is pretty simple. It’s a paranoid response to what should be a pretty straightforward question. If you’re suspicious that something isn’t what it seems, maybe it isn’t. Maybe there’s an evil genius who’s actually pulling the strings even though he’s already dead. Anything’s possible, right?
And of course, it’s also a great way to troll good ol’ Ed Harris himself.
What!? You don’t think this is a great new meme? Nice try Ford.