It’s been more than a year since the first season of Westworld finished, and we’re still reeling from the mind-bending plot twists and shock ending. Now, the second run of the hit HBO series has arrived, and it’s set to be even darker.
The mysterious cowboy sci-fi drama centres on an amusement park, Westworld, where realistic robotic ‘hosts’ entertain their human guests and cater to their hidden desires. However, by the end of series one, Anthony Hopkins’ Dr. Robert Ford (the park’s creator) has pushed the hosts into autonomy – and chaos ensues. In the latest season, the ongoing humans vs hosts battle is set to continue, with Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) pursuing her new, bloody vendetta against humanity.
Here’s everything you need to know about how and when to watch series two
When and where can UK viewers watch season two?
Season two is on Mondays at 2am on Sky Atlantic, with a repeat at 9pm on Monday. The show is available on NOW TV.
Which characters are returning?
Westworld showrunners Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy have confirmed that fan favourites Evan Rachel Wood (Dolores), Ed Harris (The Man in Black) and Thandie Newton (Maeve) are all returning for season two. Hopkins’ Ford will sadly not be back; however, a younger version of Ford, played by an unconfirmed actor, will appear in flashbacks.
Tessa Thompson’s human character Charlotte Hale and Shannon Woodward’s Elsie Hughes are also both set to rejoin the cast. Joy discussed the return of Thor: Ragnarok star Thompson, revealing: “She is back and causes trouble. She went from this controlled person playing this chess game with Ford. He takes out her king and queen in one fell swoop. Now she’s left at the mercy of the hosts like everyone else.”
Simon Quarterman (Lee Sizemore), Louis Herthum (Peter Abernathy), Luke Hemsworth (Ashley Stubbs), Angela Sarafyan (Clementine Pennyfeather) and Jimmi Simpson (the younger Man in Black/William) are also reprising their roles.
Will we see other ‘worlds’ this time?
At the end of the first season, another ‘world’ was teased, with viewers finally realising the scale of the park. Now Shogun World, set in feudal Japan (based on the real-life Edo period) and featuring samurai warriors, has been confirmed by the showrunners. And in the latest trailer, Thandie Newton’s character is seen wearing a Japanese dress.
Who is set to join the cast?
Batman vs Superman’s Tao Okamato has been cast as a character called Hanaryo, and Kiki Sukezane – of Netflix’s Lost in Space remake fame – as Sakura. Meanwhile, Twilight’s Julia Jones is also joining the cast as Kohana. Jones, a Native American actor, is likely joining the main Westworld park as one of the robotic Ghost Nation warriors that appeared at the end of season one.
Finally there’s Zahn McClarnon, who viewers have spotted in the latest trailer in both modern business attire and on horseback dressed in full Native-American gear. This might suggest he’s a host who can shift between his host persona and the real world – something Dolores also appears to do, as a shot of her dressed in cocktail attire is included in the trailer.
Is season two any good?
Well, we certainly thought so – click below to read our spoiler-free take on the new episodes…
What do we know about the plot?
Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy already spectacularly trolled viewers at the beginning of April, when they released a fake spoiler video featuring a cast version of Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up, followed by 20 minutes of a dog sitting at a piano. The ultimate rick-roll.
However, there’s been plenty of speculation on the relevance of the second season’s unofficial title. Without revealing any spoilers, last series’ unofficial title, ‘The Maze’, proved crucial to unpacking the show’s intricate plot. Now season two’s equally mysterious, unofficial title has been revealed as ‘The Door’.
“If the first season was a journey inward, this is a journey outward,” co-showrunner Jonathan Nolan explained to EW.
Is there a literal door leading out of the park? Will the Westworld hosts discover a door into Shogun World? All will be revealed…
“This is a search for what else is beyond the park, and what else is in the park,” Jonathan said. “Are there more parks? How big is the park? What’s beyond the park? We think of our seasons as discrete components in the series, to the point where we’ve named our seasons. The first season was called ‘The Maze.’ The second season is called ‘The Door’.”