Contrapasso Lets Dolores Break Free Of Her Loop While Lawrence Gets Repurposed.

This is my Westworld recap of season 1, episode 5 entitled “Contrapasso.”  Dolores, Logan and William will find themselves in Pariah, where transgression is encouraged and taken to new levels. Across the plains, the Man in Black grows tired of Lawrence when he discovers a new way to the maze. Finally, in the backstage, Elsie will make an important discovery. Westworld Contrapasso reaches a plateau in storytelling, and you will have to decide if fan theories about the Man in Black are correct.

We open with Dr. Robert Ford and Old Bill down in cold storage as Ford tells Bill about a racing dog he once knew as a child. Old Bill, with his limited emotional responses doesn’t care much and only wants to drink to the lady in the white shoes.

Up top, in the countryside, we find Dolores Abernathy, Logan, William, and the outlaw Slim about to enter Pariah. According to Logan it’s a city full of outcasts, delinquents, thieves, whores, and murderers. William comments that whoever designed this place, really didn’t think much of people. Pariah is everything you imagine a town built on decadence to be. It’s a somewhat muted blend of carriage sex and lawlessness, but nothing viewers should be too alarmed with. Think of it as a circus, where the performers are on their down time. William and group meets the Confederados, a group of slow thinking mercenaries who refused to accept that the war has ended.

James Marsden as Teddy Flood and Ed Harris as the Man in Black

Images: John P. Johnson HBO

Across the countryside, the Man in Black, Lawrence and Teddy pause when they meet up with a Little Boy. The sadistic Man in Black soon discovers that Lawrence is no longer needed, cuts his throat and uses his blood to restore life back into gravely ill Teddy. After Teddy revives a bit, the Man in Black solicits Teddy’s support by telling him a story about Dolores being kidnapped. Not so surprisingly, it works and the two set off into the countryside. Lawrence is left hanging from a tree, as the Man in Black comments to the Little Boy “Don’t worry about him, someone will be along for him shortly.”

Back in Pariah, Dolores has a reverie about a town full of dead people. Soon she finds herself walking in a parade full of people dressed ask skeletons. She faints and wakes in the backstage with Ford standing next to her. Ford quizzes her about her dreams, but she lies to him with her best poker face. Ford taunts her, asking her about Arnold and whether or not she’s been hearing voices. Again, Dolores keeps a straight face and denies it all. Dolores informs Ford that the last time she had contact with Arnold was 34 years, 42 days, and seven hours ago, which is apparently the time Arnold died. I also think it’s the time when the Marty McFly took a Delorean back to the future.

Evan Rachel Wood as Dolores Abernathy

Images: John P. Johnson

Dolores commented that the last thing Arnold said to her was that she was going to help him destroy this place. But Ford taunts her: “You didn’t, did you? You’ve been content in your little loop.” In a scene played over in many Westworld trailers Dolores asks if they were old friends and Ford responds strangely, “No, I wouldn’t say friends, Dolores. I wouldn’t say that at all.”

The next morning our group meet up with El Lazo, who is most interestingly a re-purposed Lawrence. If you subscribe to the Westworld multi-timeline theory, then this is Lawrence’s earlier role. Some believe the Man in Black storyline is running on a futuristic timeline than our group in Pariah, but only time will tell. El Lazo, aka Lawrence, recruits our group to steal some nitroglycerin from a convoy of union soldiers. To gain his support, the group agrees and they set off to hijack the convoy.

Jimmi Simpson as William and Ben Barnes as Logan

Images: John P. Johnson HBO

Somewhere in a canyon far, far away, our group successfully hijacks the single wagon convoy. A somewhat underwhelming experience until Logan gets jumped and Slim gets plugged. While fighting off the union soldiers, William is forced to gun down a soldier in cold blood, which convinces Logan that he has really accepted this place. All the bloodshed could have been avoided if Logan didn’t wrestle with one of the soldiers. In the end, all the soldiers were dead, and our group returned to Pariah. Lawrence gives the nitroglycerin to the Confederados, and then everyone hit the club scene to watch the orgy. Seriously, given all the noise I read months ago regarding the nudity in Westworld, the big orgy scene in Contraspasso was really tame. There were people having sex, largely out of view of the camera or in the shadows where your imagination was left to decide who was getting their fill. William and Logan have a breakup so to speak, as Logan once again proves what a jerk he could be. Logan tells William that he has his position at their company because he’ll never be a threat to anyone. Dolores, annoyed with the environment, takes off and discovers a fortune teller who shows her a card with the maze symbol on it.

In the backstage, Elsie discovers a satellite transmitter in the arm of the dead host, who almost killed her last week. She confronts Bernard, who’s busy playing Pokemon, and the two chat about what they’re going to do. In case you’re wondering, Contrapasso is an Italian word, derived from Latin, that means to “suffer the opposite”; one illustrative example is the punishments Dante invented for the inhabitants of his “Inferno” that were variations on their sins.

Evan Rachel Wood as Dolores Abernathy

Images: John P. Johnson HBO

In Pariah, Dolores sees Lawrence filling old Slim’s body with some of the stolen nitroglycerin. She tells William and the two decide to leave Pariah. At the exact moment the Confederados discover the nitroglycerin is nothing more than water. Logan is attacked by the soldiers, and William ignores his plea for help. I guess their bromance is over. William and Dolores exchange a kiss as the two are corned by soldiers. William is attacked and then remarkably Dolores guns down four soldiers. William asks her how she did that and she responds “I imagined a story where I didn’t have to be a damsel.” Dolores and William run and catch the train as it’s leaving Pariah. Aboard they find Lawrence, Slim’s casket and a new trio are formed. William relives Lawrence of his pistol as they believe he cannot be trusted.  Just before the scene ends, Dolores looks down and sees a maze symbol on the casket and tells a voice in her head that she’s coming. Dolores officially has a new narrative, one I suspect will not end well for some of them.

Ed Harris as the Man in Black and James Marsden as Teddy Flood in Westworld Epidoe 5 Contrapasso

Images: John P. Johnson HBO

Meanwhile the Man and Black and Teddy stop for a drink at some saloon somewhere. They’re greeted by Ford, and the three have a chat about the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series. The Man in Black attempts to enlighten Teddy about Ford’s role in his life of pain and misery. However, Teddy naturally remains loyal to his creator and stops the Man in Black from cutting Ford open. The Man in Black commented that 35 years ago, he played a pivotal role in saving Westworld, but Ford seems unimpressed. Ford tells the Man in Black “Far be it for me to get in the way of a voyage of self discovery.” The three have shots of whisky together and Ford takes an Uber home.

In the backstage Felix Lutz, one of the repair technicians, returns to his lab where Maeve remains in sleep mode. This time, he’s attempting to revive and reprogram a small bird and is successful. As the bird flies about, Maeve sits up, surprises Lutz, and the bird sits on her hand. Meave looks to Lutz and informs him that “It’s time you and I had a chat.”

Next week, Westworld episode 6 entitled “The Adversary” debuts on Sunday, Nov 6 at 9:00 PM ET on HBO. Check out all the official Westworld Contrapasso photos in the gallery. Here’s a preview of what’s coming.