Westworld Telegraph

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Dear Shatketeers,

One of the things I love about your podcasts is that you’re all careful observers of the intricate details of the show, but also have fun extending things out into philosophy, movies/books/genres, technology, history, and your own lives. What questions/problems raised by Westworld in Season 3 spill out of the show and impact the way you watch other shows or think about current events & the world?

There are several for me, but one of the most immediate ones is the role of technology during this pandemic both facilitating the way we can connect with others, but also how the current crisis is further Amazonifying our everyday lives.

One of the things I love about the show is that it consistently refuses to create easy “sides,” and constantly searches for lines of escape from dualities by creating new alliances or conflicting interests. I liked Gene’s comment about the maze in the Instacast, and I think the show is at its best when it is productively evasive, mapping out the impasses of the various problems it explores without committing to any of the dead ends. It seems pretty clear in both Westworld and our own lives that the human vs. machine division is a false binary, and whatever “bubbles of agency” we can collectively forge will depend on how clearly we’re able to identify the liberatory “little white spaces” in the society of control we live in ( That collective “we” has never been limited to humans, and given the urgency of climate change, it’s all the more imperative that we assemble together with our non-human interlocutors to make possible an actually desirable future.

I’ll miss your Westworld episodes, but perhaps this impasse doesn’t have to be a dead-end, and I’ll explore the rest of the Shat on Universe in the weeks to come. In the meantime, we’ll always have Twitter!

All the best,

P.S. Here is a picture of a couple of my non-human interlocuters:

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