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Tear Jerker / Westworld

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Series

Season 1

    The Original 
  • The first episode alone is chock full of them, even with the knowledge that the deaths of the hosts aren't permanent and their memories will be wiped.
    • The sad fact of the hosts themselves; living creatures who are routinely abused and discarded by an uncaring humanity. There's something existentially horrible about their place in the world: living toys.
    • Teddy dying in the dirt, watching helplessly as the love of his life is dragged away to be brutally raped.
    • Teddy being forced by his programming to give some boorish guests a tour of Westworld, when he really wants to spend time with Dolores and then listening quietly as the guests discuss using him for target practice.
    • Peter Abernathy discovering a photograph of a guest in a city, and subsequently having a complete breakdown as the reality of the world around him is torn apart. His later desperate attempts to warn Dolores, which is his own programming conflicting with his realization of what he is, shows how hosts' minds can tear themselves apart.
    • Teddy dying in Dolores' arms.
    • Peter's quotation of Shakespeare in his confrontation with Robert Ford. He's so angry, so distraught, and yet he can only communicate these feelings through old programming. Louis Herthum's performance is incredible and really shows the depths of Peter's anguish; the look on his face as he has to drift helplessly into storage is heart-breaking.
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    Chestnut 
  • Noteworthy is Teddy being shot by a Jerkass guest at the brothel who is drunk and belligerent for no reason. After shooting Teddy several times, he exclaims "Now that's a fuckin' vacation!"
  • When Dr. Ford reaches the end of his walk and sends the little boy host away. While looking at the small solitary steeple, it seems like he has become resigned to his fate. Whatever is going on, it's weighing on him heavily.
    • In the finale, we find out that the reason is two-fold. One, the town with the White Church was the original Beta Town where Ford's friend Arnold Weber died, so there are bad memories that he's revisiting. Second is that he finally decides to put his new narrative into play. The town he's overlooking is where he dies in the finale, so he knows then that his time is running out.
  • Also, the brief look at Maeve's former life as a mother who is attacked by Indians and murdered by the Man in Black.
  • The Man in Black threatens Lawrence into giving up the location of the Maze by basically killing his whole family and hometown in front of him, only sparing his daughter after she finally gives him what he wants.
  • Just watching Maeve's gradual fall from grace. Once one of Westworld's most popular attractions, her popularity among the guests begins to fade, and when she's no longer pulling in the "numbers", the staff coldly decide to forcibly retire her and have her role replaced by Clementine. Watching her repeatedly try to seduce guests like she's programmed to and failing badly at it is painful to watch.

    The Stray 
  • Dolores begging Teddy to leave with her. It's not certain if her desire to leave is scripted or if it's her emergent consciousness speaking.
  • The fact that not only has Teddy died over a thousand times, but nobody had ever bothered to write a proper backstory for him before Dr. Ford thought to do it.
  • Learning about Bernard's son and how his death still haunts him.
  • Dr. Ford describing his former business partner Arnold's life as marked with tragedy, his isolation from humanity and his death.

    Dissonance Theory 
  • Armistice's story about how she got her snake tattoo. Wyatt had murdered her entire family. To survive she had to cover herself in her mother's blood to make it appear she was already dead. She then hunted down and killed every one responsible except for Wyatt himself. When she tells the Man In Black the story, she has a pained, haunted look in her eyes.
  • Dolores' latest talk with Bernard about losing everyone she loved. She's in pain, and it shows. To her credit, when offered to have that pain taken away, she refuses.
  • Lawrence about to be executed again. He just wants it over with and is yet again denied when the Man In Black saves him. Also doubles as a Funny Moment when the Man In Black removes his blindfold. His reaction to seeing the entire firing squad dead? "Mother... fucker!"
  • Armistice gets another one when she's gunned down (again) during the raid in Sweetwater. She's on the ground and clearly suffering from her wounds. Although, she still goes down swinging.

    Contrapasso 
  • Felix, the lab tech, has the ambition to move from fixing up the bodies to becoming a programmer and receiving a promotion. His supervisor catches him practicing with one of the robotic birds, and coldly tells him that he will never achieve that goal.
    Sylvester: Whoa, Whoa, Whoa. Is that your ace plan? You're going to fix up a birdie and get yourself a promotion? You're not a fucking ornithologist. And you're sure as hell not a coder. You are a butcher. And that is all you'll ever be.
  • Logan delivering a "The Reason You Suck" Speech to William. He coldly belittles not only William's accomplishments (which he got through hard work and dedication rather than privilege), but his relationship with his fiancée (Logan's sister). No wonder William snaps.
  • William and Dolores' kiss is arguably this as their realities are both terribly twisted and both are trying to make sense of what is happening.

    The Adversary 
  • Maeve is finally given a full tour of Westworld, seeing the full process of how hosts are created and programmed. This also means finding out her dreams are actually stray memories from past builds. Finally she tries to insist that at least what she's saying right now is her own choice, only to be presented with a map of her dialogue choices that fills in word by word as she thinks of it. She then tries so hard to go off script that she crashes.
    • Maeve spots familiar images in the Westworld promotional clips and is told that her dreams of having a child and a homestead of her own are in fact *memories* from an earlier build. Not aspirations or fantasies, but things she once possessed before they were stripped away from her.
    • The music that accompanies her tour deserves a mention. It’s a cover of Motion Picture Soundtrack by Radiohead, performed by a string quartet, and even without words it’s achingly sad.
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    Trompe L'Oeil 
  • Bernard turning out to be a host making it clear his wife and son never existed and then being forced to violently kill Theresa, the one real person he cares about.
  • Maeve is forced to watch helplessly as her friend Clementine is taken away from the brothel, unable to protest for fear of giving the game away. She quickly has herself sent to maintenance so she can help her friend, but is powerless to stop Clementine being forcibly retired, due to a scheme concocted by Charlotte and Theresa that used Clementine as a sacrificial lamb. And when Clementine is lobotomised, Maeve is unable to stop her tears.
  • William's confession to Dolores that the reason he loves Westworld so much is because he can't stand his real life.
    William: Dolores... I've been pretending my whole life. Pretending I don't mind, pretending I belong. My life's built on it. And it's a good life, it's a life I always wanted. And then I came here, and I get a glimpse, for a second, of a life in which I don't have to pretend. A life in which I can be truly alive. How can I go back to pretending when I know what this feels like?

    Trace Decay 
  • At the saloon, Maeve sees there's a "new" version of Clementine, this one an attractive blonde. She wears the same dress hair and holds the exact same conversation with a customer before small talk with Maeve. Maeve has to fight not to openly cry at the realization that the woman she considered a friend is gone and this replacement doesn't even know their "friendship" has never existed.
  • Of all people, the Man in Black gets one with the reveal of his backstory: after decades of using the park to indulge his darker instincts so he could be a good person in the real world, his wife still managed to pick up on what kind of person he was and eventually grew so terrified of him that she killed herself. At the funeral, his daughter revealed all this to him and cut off all contact with him afterwards, and his search for the maze is a desperate attempt for something in his life to have meaning again.
  • Maeve's backstory: She was originally in a storyline of a mother whose child is murdered by the Man in Black. Her first "awakening" came in the lab, totally unable to let go and crying out for her child. Realizing the issues of sending her back, Ford decided to "give her a fresh start" by remaking her into the cool woman we know. It also turns out that when he tried to waken her the first time, she slashed her own throat. She now remembers it all and naturally is not happy.

    The Well-Tempered Clavier 
  • Bernard discovering for a second time that he is a host. And then, when he convinces Ford to unlock all of his memories, he has to constantly relive his son's death until he learns to let the memory go, capped off with him giving one last hug to his son before leaving. Then, when he tries to rebel against Ford, Ford simply uses a backdoor in Bernard's code to force him to commit suicide, with Bernard pleading for Ford to stop.
  • Ford briefly hesitates when Bernard calls him out by his full name, and then walks away as he cannot bear to look at Bernard killing himself. This is the second time that Ford couldn't convince his closest friend to see things his way, and he's clearly anguished about it.
  • Logan wakes up from a drunken stupor after he and William make amends, the camera pans out as he looks around the camp and finds all of the Confederados dead. He can only stare in horror as he realize that William killed them all, his demeanor and voice completely devoid of any emotion around the scene. Be Careful What You Wish For.
    • It then sets-up the final shot of the episode as Dolores, hearing someone outside the church where the hosts used to come for maintenance, runs toward the door, thinking that it's William—and she's right. It is William—only much older, clad in black, and played by Ed Harris. That's right: that Nice Guy, one of the few genuinely good people on the show, is also the show's resident psychopath.
  • Dolores at the end of her retracing her path back to the prototype town. She enters the confessional in the church, which is actually an elevator leading to Arnold's lab. She sits down in the chair in the lab like she always does, and Arnold comes by and sits across from her like he always does for his regular chats with her. She begs him to help her now that she's developing consciousness, with all the pain that comes with it, but he reminds her that he can't help her because she killed him. This wakes her up from that old memory and she finds herself sitting in the same chair in the present day, over 30 years later, and the lab is old and abandoned. Arnold was never there. Her malfunctioning memory and emerging consciousness, combined with what's left of Arnold in the park's systems, made her go on that futile journey. She's visibly distraught and it brings her nearly to tears.

    The Bicameral Mind 
  • When William finds Dolores again he looks so happy to see her... And then we see how quickly his expression turns to something both heartbroken and ugly as some other player in Westworld picks up the same scenario he did when he first met Dolores. It doesn't excuse his later actions to both her or other hosts, but both his expression then and the way he narrates the story in the present, when he's become the sadistic Man in Black, makes it clear that he hasn't quite yet gotten over the bitterness of the realization that she is still a programmed being.
  • Dolores holding out for William to save her, and bragging about it to the Man in Black, then he reveals that he is in fact William. She actually ends up crying for what he's become.
    • Made perhaps even worse by the fact that contrary to what he may believe, what William and Dolores had is implied to be more special than he knows. It is shown that Dolores walked this path many times before, no doubt sometimes with other guests accompanying her. She never met William in this loop and he should be no more special to her than any other guest. Yet when she needed help most, she didn't hold out for Teddy or any other guest, she held out for William, showing that after thirty years and countless loops, William remains the one person she trusted above all others.
  • Dolores and Teddy have an extremely intimate moment, where he finally takes her to the sea to die in peace. Then harsh spotlights blaze up, and it's revealed that all this was just a show for the Board.
  • The weary lament from Arnold that "I want to see [Charlie] again", said as though it's something that's been at the forefront of his mind for many years, just a moment before Dolores shoots him.

Season 2

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    Virtu E Fortuna 
  • Dolores reunites with a glitching Peter Abernathy, clearly distraught at how her father goes from recognizing her and thinking they're back at the ranch to rambling about torture and the apocalypse. The scene plays out like an adult watching their elderly parent wrestle with dementia.
  • Hector's reaction when he realises that his heartfelt words to Maeve are still just phrases Sizemore programmed him with, after boasting that Sizemore understands nothing of who he is. Sizemore then shows rare depth when he admits to Maeve that he based Hector's long lost love and words on his own break-up.
     The Riddle of the Sphinx 
  • When Lawrence asks William if his daughter would like to see him shot dead in front of her, William responds: "Probably". In the first season, he mentioned that his daughter had disowned him.
  • The entire episode is a tearjerker for two of the show's biggest monsters, William and Delos.
  • Delos, desperate for immortality, is placed into a host body. Unfortunately, the technology just isn't there yet: he's kept in what amounts to a fancy prison cell for constant observation, unable to leave or see the sunlight. His mind inevitably degrades, and like Peter Abernathy, is very like watching someone with dementia or some other degenerative disease. He's then burned and resurrected over and over. The hits keep on coming; as evil as he was, it's heartbreaking for him to learn of his wife's death (which he tries to take in stride) and even worse when he discovers his daughter committed suicide. Learning this breaks him entirely, and he screams helplessly for his troubled son Logan to save him, only to find that Logan himself is dead having never reconciled with his father. He's lost everything, and William dooms him to slide into a deep, violent insanity. His final death is a relief.
    • In particular there's just how fast he goes from anger to utter despair at learning of Juliet's death.
    Delos: You enjoying running my company, Bill? Living in my house? Fucking my daughter?
    William: Juliet's dead. She killed herself.
    (beat)
    Delos: Why... why would she do that? What did you do to her?
  • William reeks of melancholy through the entire episode. In his younger days, his meetings with Delos cause a huge emotional strain on him since he considered Delos a surrogate father, and he's forced to watch him slide into insanity over and over in an attempt to perfect human-host hybrid technology. His final meeting with Delos shows him as tired and casually cruel, lamenting the mistakes he's made and clearly at a loss for where he's meant to go. It's little wonder that he returned to Westworld in an attempt to find it's hidden meaning: he has nothing else left.
    Akane No Mai 
  • Clementine encounters the host who replaced her, and desperately tries to copy her lines to go back to her old self, but it's just not there anymore. Much like Peter, it's unnervingly reminiscent of someone dealing with advancing dementia who's just aware enough to know how bad her situation is.
  • The Shogun murdering Sakura in front of Akane and Maeve. Akane, who considered Sakura a surrogate daughter, is completely distraught, and Maeve, who's had to deal with losing her own daughter, is equally horrified at the sight.
    Phase Space 
  • William is so certain his daughter wants nothing to do with him that he assumes her appearance is an especially cruel trick of Ford's using a host doppelganger.
  • Maeve finally meets her long-lost daughter except that she has a new mother and doesn't remember Maeve as her original mother. The latter is distraught with this revelation and just like Peter and Clementine, her old role is replaced by another host.
     Les Ecorches 
  • Dolores and Peter have their last father-daughter moment where the latter is aware that she has to cut open the former's skull so she can extract his core which contained all the data that Delos had been after. Peter, who is fully conscious, understands what is happening and he says his final goodbyes to her.
  • Maeve loses her daughter again as she watches her being kidnapped by the Ghost Nation. Then, she's accidentally gunned down by Sizemore's security team.
    • Prior to this, Maeve finds out that Lawrence is finally awaken and reminds him of the terrible things that William did to him and his family. Lawrence is distraught when he remembers the Man in Black's actions and points at the injured William, who begs him that he saved his wife but Lawrence is too angry that he shoots him for his earlier actions.
  • Poor Bernard experiences the worst crap in his life after Hale and Strand expose him as a host and torture him for Dolores' whereabouts. With all of his memories jumbled as he remembers the horrible things that he experienced (the death of his "son", the murder of Theresa etc.) and Ford reminding him that he and the rest of the hosts have to suffer more in order to leave the park, Bernard still has to step up in order to survive.
     Kiksuya 
  • Akecheta traveled every inch of the park looking for his original wife, Kohana. Eventually he gets himself killed to search the park facilities for her. When he first finds her in cold storage, he’s thrilled to be reunited. However, she’s beyond unresponsive, not just not recognizing him like before but completely blank and motionless. Akecheta finally breaks down, crying while holding the empty shell of his beloved wife.
  • Akecheta promising to look after Maeve’s daughter, and Maeve repeating the Arc Words “Take my heart when you go” as she lies down on an operating table in the Mesa.
  • Lee regretting betraying Maeve and tearfully admitting to her that she deserves to live happily with her daughter, meaning that he's finally come around to seeing Maeve as a legitimate, living being rather than a simple machine.
     Vanishing Point 
  • William kills a rescue team and his daughter thinking they are Hosts Ford sent to keep him from reaching the Valley. Once he realizes that she was indeed his daughter he comes dangerously close to, if not outright crossing, the DespairEventHorizon.
    • The fact that this episode is aired on Father's Day. Let's just say that William never gets the "Father of the Year" award.
  • We already know that Juliet committed suicide after realizing the darkness inside William. But how she found out is tragic: William tells her, while he thinks she's asleep, that he's not the man who she fell in love with and that everything that he pretends to be is fake. After William leaves, Juliet wakes up and reads his psychological profile and she watches in horror the video of the horrible things that William did in Westworld including the part where he drags Dolores to the barn to rape her.
    • There's also her conversation with William where she blames him for being a "virus" that destroyed her family. Considering that William's responsible for Logan's drug addiction and overdose, she's unfortunately right.
    • Emily wonders why her mother killed herself. While she thinks that her father is responsible, she also blames herself because she was forcing her mother to go rehab against her will.
    • Emily also tells the story of how she threw away the jewelry box her mother gave her; Juliet took that same box out of the trash and kept it. Had Emily found the box while going through her mother's effects, she would probably have looked inside and found for herself why Juliet committed suicide.
  • Poor Teddy realizes that the woman he loves more than anything reprogrammed him to be a monster. But he still can't bring himself to hurt her nor can he bring himself to keep being with her. So he kills himself.
     The Passenger 
  • As horrible as she's become by this point, there's still something heartbreaking about Dolores lying next to Teddy's corpse after he commits suicide, gently cradling him. This seems to be the one moment in the second season where she truly regrets something she's done in the name of her revolution, if only because it took the love of her life away from her.
  • Logan's conversation with his father starts off with him acting like his usual apathetic self, revealing that he already tried to get clean, only to get turned down by him. It's only when Logan gets kicked out of his former home that he all but breaks down in tears, pleading for help now that he's hit rock-bottom. To make things worse, those would be the last words he ever said to his father.
  • The culmination of the tragedy that is Maeve's storyline this season. Last season, she had the choice to escape the park before everything goes haywire, and instead chooses to sacrifice her potential freedom to save her daughter, knowing full well that her entire relationship with her was constructed by Delos. This season, she literally goes through hell in order to reach her daughter this episode, right as Delos spreads a virus causing Hosts to kill each other. Again choosing to sacrifice herself for her daughter, she uses her Host controlling powers to keep the killer Hosts at bay before being shot down by security personnel. Maeve looks at her daughter one last time to see her escape from the horror that is Westworld, and then smiles. Then, she dies. Damn... Though at least, Felix and Sylvester are there to revive her after they glance at her body.
  • Elsie's death is shocking that this ironically leads Bernard to finally achieve self-awareness. It seems Ford maybe be right that hosts like him need to suffer to achieve consciousness. But given how Akecheta achieved his self-awareness on his own by remembering his wife, it can be given that Bernard really cares for Elsie as a friend which is why he refuses to kill her on Ford's orders and leaves her when going to the Forge. On the other hand, Elsie has to go to Charlotte and tries to bargain her so that she can secretly check up on Bernard to see if he's not controlled by Ford despite that he already deleted Ford from his mind.

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