5 things we’re still thinking about after the Westworld Comic-Con panel

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: (l-R) Jeffrey Wright, Evan Rachel Wood, Lisa Joy, Jonathan Nolan speak at the "Westworld III" Panel during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: (l-R) Jeffrey Wright, Evan Rachel Wood, Lisa Joy, Jonathan Nolan speak at the "Westworld III" Panel during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images) /

The Westworld season 3 panel at San Diego Comic Con had deep thoughts, few plot reveals and one amazing trailer. Here’s what we’re still thinking about.

The stars of HBO’s Westworld took the stage in Hall H at San Diego Comic Con over the weekend, ostensibly to discuss the show’s upcoming third season. It’s been over a year since the season 2 finale aired, which saw host Dolores Abernathy escape the park, along with a bag filled with several other robot consciousnesses, including Bernard.

So…now what? Series creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy were present, along with actors Jeffrey Wright, Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, Tessa Thompson, Aaron Paul and Luke Hemsworth, to preview season 3 for fans. But plot specifics and casting details were in short supply – Joy and Nolan are particularly great at artfully dodging questions they don’t want to answer. Instead, the series’ panel largely focused on a wide ranging discussion about artificial intelligence, algorithmic determinism and the technology we’re all currently giving free rein over our lives.

The biggest moment of the panel was probably the release of the season 3 trailer, which gave us our first proper look at what this season of Westworld might be about.

After watching the trailer and attending the series’ Comic Con session, there are more than a few things about season 3 we desperately need to know. Here are five of the most pressing.

The New World

Much like its predecessors, “The Maze” and “The Door,” the new season of Westworld will also come with a subtitle. Season 3 is “The New World,” which works in both a literal and figurative sense, i.e. it’s a new world in which robots are secretly living amongst humans, and one in which Westworld will try to balance a narrative that exists both in and outside of the Delos parks.

Maybe. We think.

Nolan was predictably cryptic on the subject during the series’ panel.

"“So we left the park?” asked moderator Amy Webb.“I didn’t say that,” responded Nolan."

Of course, it’s entirely possible that Dolores only managed to escape to a strange version of Delos Tomorrowland rather than our real world. A twist of that magnitude wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility for this show, would it?


Season 3 will take us to a new, previously unseen section of the park, called Warworld. Going by the trailer, this is where Maeve and Hector currently seem to be hiding out/living/??? and plenty of gorgeous 1940s costumes and Nazis abound.

Of course, why precisely Maeve and Hector are there, is anyone’s guess.


According to Evan Rachel Wood, Dolores is something of a “fish out of water” this season after leaving Westworld behind.

"Dolores is basically taking on the world single handedly. It’s a lonely experience."

What, precisely her ultimate mission is, now that she’s out of the park is anyone’s guess, and that’s probably the point. But Wood promises that her character “is still pretty ruthless” this season, and a “good mix of Dolores and Wyatt”.  Yet, her interactions with Caleb, a new character played by Aaron Paul, will apparently somehow cause her to reevaluate her views on humanity. How? And, more importantly, why?

This is, of course, one of the central questions of the show – whether the hosts can learn empathy and understanding and sympathy for the human condition, or if it’s merely some sort of extension of the programming they already possess. Is Dolores truly capable of that level of introspection and change on her own? Or is it just a different kind of loop?

Another important Dolores related question – who, exactly, did she bring out of the park with her? Whose consciousness is currently occupying Hale’s body?

The Man in Black

During the panel, Nolan wouldn’t explicitly confirm that Ed Harris would be returning to the show for season 3. Instead, he joked about it, but in a way that certainly heavily implies that The Man in Black will still be part of the story.

"Ed has a big gun. I’m not going to tell him he’s not on the show anymore."

Also, there’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss it shot of Harris in the season 3 trailer, but it’s extremely unclear if he’s in the real world or one of the parks, let alone which version of the character we’re looking at.

In the trailer, Bernard describes his plan to return to the park, in order to find someone strong enough to take down Dolores. It’s certainly possible that that person is William, if only because I’m not entirely sure there’s an ending to Dolores’ story that doesn’t involve him in some way. However, the question of whether Bernard will find the real Man in Black there, or one of his early host copies is anyone’s guess.


Aaron Paul’s new character is something of a mystery, and Westworld’s Comic Con panel shed precious little light on who Caleb is and what makes him tick. We know he’s a construction worker, and that profession has apparently changed quite a bit in the years between now and 2050-2060, when we’re all assuming this season is set.

Construction – and life, possibly – appears to involve working alongside robots, and Caleb has one of his own named George. A precursor to what will later becomes the hosts? Possibly. As for Caleb himself, Paul was predictably vague, a skill he’s apparently picked up rather quickly from the rest of the Westworld crew.

"You’ll see very early on that Caleb has a complicated past. He’s a bit of a white hat and a black hat maybe."

But, the trailer features a couple of shots of him glowering ominously and also possibly shooting someone while looking upset? Whose side is he on?

Next. 5 questions we have after watching the Star Trek: Picard trailer. dark

Westworld season 3 will air in 2020.