Westworld: Fan Theories – The Man In Black

By: DJ Gray October 22, 2016

It’s safe to say that Westworld is a definite hit.   Three episodes into the series and the internet is flooded with fan theories about the show and the characters that we’ve seen so far.   So let’s dig into some of the latest and weirdest theories that have sprung up so far.   Before going any further, this is the official spoiler warning.  It’s hard to speculate about where the show will go without discussing where we’re at with what we’ve already seen.

So if you haven’t seen Westworld at all, or aren’t caught up yet….here’s the link to HBOGo




Lawrence and The Man in Black – image provided by HBO. Credit: John P. Johnson

For everyone else, let’s start with with one of the obvious ones: The Man In Black.

He is one of the more enigmatic characters we’ve seen so far is The Man In Black.   Like many viewers, I’m pretty curious to see where his plotline is going to lead us.   His quest for the next level of the game and the fact that he’s got ‘carte blanche’ in the park (presumably since he’s been coming to the park for 30 years) tell us that he’s significant.  Exactly, how significant we don’t know just yet. However, fan theories about him range from him being a host without a loop or defined parameters (possibly created by Arnold, the mysterious co-creator of the park)  to being Arnold himself/ a member of Arnold’s family.   The most interesting one so far has been that the show is showing us different timelines and that The Man In Black is actually William (Jimmi Simpson)  or Logan (Ben Barnes) 30 years in the future.

This isn’t a perfect theory by any means, but it’s one of the more compelling ones.   Especially since a careful rewatching of episode three, “The Stray” shows us that the Westworld logo as William enters the park is different from the one we’ve seen before.  Logan and William’s story so far parallels the original movie the show is based off – two guys enter the park, get super drunk, fight off a robot uprising….normal vacation stuff right?  I don’t buy that the show is a remake of the film, it’s more likely that the film is being used as more of a creation myth, which just adds another level of very interesting possibilities to where the show might be headed.

One of the gaping holes in this theory is the fact that as far as what we’ve seen on screen, Delores doesn’t become self-aware until after The Man In Black rapes her in what would be the present day timeline, and then in episode 3, wanders off her pre-planned loop to find William and Logan in the woods, after having murdered a would-be rapist (which is a huge violation of her programming – remember hosts cannot hurt guests as far as we are aware).  If William is the Man in Black, those timelines don’t exactly jive.


Delores and William – image provided by HBO. Credit: John P. Johnson

…unless of course Delores is a replica of another host from 30 years prior.  It would not be a surprise to know that some of the hosts are built/created to look exactly like actual human beings.  She’s the oldest host in the game, which begs the question of how old she actually is and how long exactly she’s been in the park.

Is it the same amount of time that the Man in Black has been visiting the park?   What exactly happened in the last catastrophic failure at the park?   

What is the maze and why is it so important to The Man In Black?   These are all questions that need to be answered, though with each new episode, it seems like we only wind up with even more questions than before. Episode 4, “Dissonance Theory”  airs this Sunday at 8/9pm Central on HBO with an immediate encore after and I’m looking forward to seeing what else they’ll give us this week.

Stay connected: Follow @ThreeIfBySpace on Twitter and for all the latest on Westworld, follow me (@DorothyJoanGray), too.  Westworld is on Twitter (@WestworldHBO) and DiscoverWestworld.com


DJ Gray