'Westworld' Season 2 Features Shocking Return of SPOILER

With three episodes left in the second season, Westworld just dropped a major bombshell that will have a major impact on the HBO TV series.

As humans scramble for their lives and hosts scramble for freedom, one major character thought dead made a shocking return in the latest episode of the new season.

Warning: Spoilers for Westworld Season 2 Episode “Les Écorchés” below.

In the timeline set right after Dolores' uprising, Bernard and Elsie make it to the Cradle, the Delos Corporation's back up facility for every host in the park, stationed in the central headquarters known as the Mesa.

Bernard plugs into the mainframe, and as the previous episode set up, he comes face to face with his creator Dr. Robert Ford, thought dead after the events of the Season One Finale.

It wasn't archival footage or CGI trickery like they used to make Anthony Hopkins appear as his younger self; this is the Academy Award-winning actor reprising the role for another stint on the critically acclaimed series. HBO kept this under wraps much like the appearance of Giancarlo Esposito's role earlier in the season, but Hopkins' return is a much bigger surprise considering the actor was announced to have moved on from Westworld.

But this is a slightly different version of Ford, as evidenced by his appearance inside the mainframe that runs the park's systems. While Bernard perceives himself to be physically located in Westworld, conversing with Ford, he's merely an avatar for his backed-up mind and conscience.

The flashbacks Bernard had of shooting up Delos scientists and stealing a newly manufactured control unit were revealed to be at the behest of Ford, who wanted his brain copied into the mainframe before he was ultimately killed by Dolores, teasing that he knew such a fate was inevitable.

Ford ends up taking control of Bernard, living as an echo inside the host body in hopes of reinforcing his final act and saving the hosts' autonomy. But he's definitely being portrayed in a villainous light, taking Bernard's free will and manipulating his actions. While Ford might tell them it isn't his story anymore, that it's Bernard's, he clearly wants to maintain a sense of authorship.

Bernard destroys what's left of the system while at the Mesa, giving free reign to Dolores' uprising, and murders some of the remaining guards who are attempting to clean up the mess. It does paint Bernard's actions in the present day in a new light.

After this revelation, we have a lot of new questions moving forward, and now there's a major player who re-entered the game with their own mysterious motivations. We'll see what happens as Westworld Season 2 moves into the end game.


Westworld airs Sundays on HBO.

Were you surprised by Ford's return? Let us know in the comments!