HBO's Westworld: 15 Clues in Season 3, Episode 5 "Genre"
Major spoilers from here on out!
HBO's Westworld Season 3 got a little experimental this week in episode 5, Genre, which took a closer look at the enigmatic Serac and uncovered more of Dolores's plan--which, unsurprisingly, may just lead to the complete collapse of humanity as we know it. This all took place as poor Caleb was subjected to the drug trip of a lifetime, dosed with the titular Genre, and set adrift on a psychedelic journey where his perception of the world kept shifting--wait for it--genres.
As Caleb's mind slid between color palettes and styles, Dolores kicked off a major phase of her scheme: uploading and distributing all the privatized data farmed by Incite to every person in the world. The lives people have been leading have been kept on tramlines, and Dolores is finally showing everyone the tracks--except not everyone was prepared for what it is they learned. Chaos erupted, and society immediately began to crumble, just as Serac had feared.
With only three episodes left in this season, things are gearing up for what is sure to be an epic conclusion. Caleb's past is still mostly shrouded in mystery, Maeve is still a piece in play, Bernard's role in the plan has yet to be relieved, and Dolores's clones may or may not be having second thoughts about becoming cannon fodder. We've gathered up fifteen different references, clues, and Easter Eggs to help us try and piece together a projection for what might be coming up in the next three weeks. Share your theories in the comments below!
1. Dempsey and Incite
The Dempsey that helped Serac kickstart his company was Liam's father. We know Dempsey Sr. is currently dead, and in this episode we learn exactly how. Serac's brother may not have had a hand in it, but Serac most certainly did.
2. Saul, David, Soloman
Rehoboam's first incarnations followed the biblical naming scheme. Saul, David, and Soloman were all ancient kings of Israel who came before Rehoboam.
3. "You think I killed your friend?"
Liam asks Caleb if Caleb believes he killed his friend, indirectly, by sending Caleb off to war--the friend in question here is Francis, the man Caleb has been having on-again-off-again flashbacks to since the first episode of the season. Until now, Caleb has remembered Francis's death one way--Francis was shot, Caleb tried to save him--but it turns out that may not be true. In fact, judging by Liam's terrified reaction to Caleb's file, it certainly seems like Caleb's unreliable memory may be hiding something much darker.
The drug Liam doses Caleb with is also our episode title: Genre. Caleb experiences five distinct genres as he proceeds through the night's affairs: film noir, action movie, romance, drama, and finally, reality.
5. Flight of the Valkyrie
Caleb's first genre switch comes with a soundtrack--Wagner's Flight of the Valkyries, perfect for those giant action set pieces.
6. Ash and Giggles
Caleb's pals from episodes 1 and 2 are back in time for a clutch save. Giggles is still wearing the same mood-ring shirt we saw him in last which either means he owns a bunch of them or not much time has passed.
7. King Midas and Tom Canty
Ash says Liam makes King Midas, a biblical king who was cursed to have everything he touched (including food and people) turn to gold, look like Tom Canty, the pauper from Mark Twain's The Prince And The Pauper.
8. "You can't be in two places at once."
Liam is certain that Dolores's gambit is going to fail because she'd have to physically be at the Rehoboam node to access the system, not realizing that she's already there. We learned last week that Dolores has cloned herself across multiple host bodies. She's in more than two places at once.
Caleb's fourth genre shift is accompanied by Iggy Pop's Nightclubbing.
10. Rehoboam's Eclipse
Serac explains that Rehoboam working was like a "sun and moon aligned," which makes the circular diagrams featured in each episode take on even more meaning. The alignment of the sun and moon is an eclipse--Rehoboam's diagrams look just like a solar eclipse.
11. Space Oddity
The song playing as the world is "set off their loops" is an orchestral cover of David Bowie's Space Oddity.
Serac explains that outliers are sent to war so they will be "chewed up and spit out" and no longer be a deviation in the system. Caleb was sent away to war, meaning he was likely classed as an outlier and marked for death.
13. Mozart's Requiem in D-Minor
You'll recognize the ominous chords playing over the sweeping shot of a Los Angeles beach from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining.
14. "You did it."
Liam tells Caleb he "did it" meaning killing Francis--or so we can assume, based on the flashbacks. It looks like the man Caleb and Francis were attempting to torture survived the ordeal but Francis didn't. It's looking like Caleb sold Francis out. The question is why or for what?
The episode closes with Fischerspooner's song, Emerge. "You don't need to emerge from nothing."