“Que Serà, Serà” finds two hosts being hunted and eventually killed by humans compelled by the tower. The winner is finally gunned down by William, who tells him, “Winner takes all.” Death once again proves meaningless as Charlotte’s faceless minions heal and upgrade her body. She hears Bernard’s message, apparently intended for her, as we check on Teddy and Cristina. The latter is a “machine without a body,” controlling the world behind the scenes but unable to interact with it. Cristina realizes that she created Maya, Peter, and all the people who did see her. She and Teddy embrace as Charlotte removes Dolores’ pearl from the city map, erasing Cristina from the real city. Charlotte asks Clementine for help finding William, but she declines, preferring to find what’s out there for her. Charlotte sends goons after William, but he bests them and challenges her to save the Sublime.
Caleb hides his affliction from his daughter as he disinfects her wounds. Stubbs protects Frankie and Caleb from a strange host, but Clementine kills both men. She goes after Frankie, but Caleb intercepts her blow. Frankie shoots and kills Clementine. Cristina wakes up in the walled garden with Maya. Charlotte finds William at the dam and scolds him for becoming as bad as the real man he killed. He denies that there was ever any difference. Charlotte kills William so Cristina can run a test, as prescribed by Bernard. After getting Frankie safely to her girlfriend, Caleb says goodbye. Cristina realizes this isn’t the real Teddy; he’s a manifestation of her memories, created by her just like her friends. Charlotte kills herself. Dolores embarks on the final game.
Rarely has so much happened in an episode that left me so empty. From what we can tell, at least for now, everyone is dead except for Dolores. I say for now because death means nothing in Westworld, especially now that everyone is a robot anyway. I would expect to be shocked by a season finale killing off every major character except one. However, I’m so exhausted by Westworld‘s maneuvering that it’s hard to care about anything. They also recycled the season 3 twist of making everyone Dolores, this time in the form of Cristina and her friends. I found this extremely disappointing and boring in season 3, and here we are again. Dolores was woken up by her own memories of Teddy, which were really a disguised second Dolores all along. I hate it here. Descartes would be proud of Dolores telling herself (through her memory of Teddy) that she is real because her thoughts are real, though. This show has become too mussy, muddled, and confusing even for its biggest reveals to land.
I also found it ridiculous when Charlotte ordered her drones to make her stronger. The hosts are all but indestructible and seemingly endlessly capable of resurrection. At that point, what does “stronger” even mean? The hosts have been the narrative victims of power creep for a long time, but it’s truly getting ridiculous. Do we even really believe they’re dead now? Why would Dolores re-enter Westworld if no other hosts will be there? Will this park also be populated by creations of her mind? I don’t understand Charlotte’s motivation to stomp on her map to eliminate Cristina and Teddy. Why does she care about them? After all, they’re not causing the problems in the city; William is. I don’t think we understand Charlotte well enough to know what to make of her actions; even her ultimate suicide is a mystery to me. Tessa Thompson’s milquetoast performance hardly sheds any light on Charlotte’s desires or beliefs. But worse yet, I don’t care when she kills herself. This character has no impact despite being the season’s main antagonist. I also feel this way about Caleb’s wife; we spent very little time with her in the beginning. I grew to care about Caleb’s family, but we don’t know his wife well enough for this scene where he and C talk about her to hit properly. I don’t feel very sad for a character I barely know and haven’t seen or thought about in several episodes.
On the other hand, William’s presumed death is just sad. Why would you eliminate your best villain ahead of the final season? Why kill host William just as he’s starting to get interesting? In the wake of killing his original, he finally has some real personality and menace. I also liked the scene where he listened to Johnny Cash in the car; do you get it? Johnny Cash was called the Man in Black. The way he beat down Charlotte’s goons was delightfully violent, and if he’s really dead, this is exactly what we’ll be missing in season 5.
Maya’s appearance in this episode doesn’t carry enough weight because we haven’t seen her in several episodes. She also has less impact because, when we see her, we already know she and everyone else in Cristina’s life was a product of Dolores’ sad, lonely mind. Maya isn’t real, and her friendship with Cristina is a falsehood created to comfort a troubled psyche. I did like the detail of Maya’s dialogue sounding just like Dolores, but overall, this just rings hollow. Teddy being a figment of Dolores/Cristina’s imagination is the worst insult, but this also wipes away any goodwill I had for Maya. Who cares about any of this when it’s just in Dolores’ mind? None of it is real, so nothing matters. Post-season 1 Westworld hates Teddy, and that just makes me sad. As a nitpick, I really don’t think this episode needed that many fades to black before the actual end.
“Que Serà, Serà” is exactly the finale season 4 of Westworld deserves: it contains memorable, punchy dialogue and scenes that should be emotional, but it all gets lost in the midst of preposterous plot twists and attempted philosophizing. The first three episodes of this season showed promise, but I knew to be skeptical from the beginning, thanks to season 3. The most interesting parts of season 4 only happened in Dolores’ mind, and all the other characters are now presumed dead anyway. I want to feel encouraged by Dolores’ return to Westworld and host William’s metamorphosis, but the former is likely false hope, and they cut the latter off at the kneecaps.