Charlotte Hale, or whoever is inside her head, is one of the most fascinating questions of Westworld season 3. At the end of season 2, Bernard created a host version of Charlotte and implanted Dolores’ mind into the body. This means that for a significant portion of the show, we’d been watching Dolores wander around in Charlotte’s body pretending to be her.
Bu, at the end of season 2, Charlotte’s walking around on her own after Dolores remakes her old body. So, who is Charlotte now? Season 3’s premiere doesn’t give us much information to go on, but she does show up for a few key scenes, which gives us just enough room to recall which possible brains are wandering around Charlotte’s body in Westworld season 3.
[Ed. note: this post contains spoilers for Westworld season 3 episode 1.]
Dolores, but we’re seeing her before she makes her own body again
Westworld has always told its story in a variety of timelines at once, without ever notifying us of when exactly we were watching, so it’s totally possible that we’re seeing some of Dolores’ first moves in the real world. If that’s the case, it wouldn’t be totally clear what the story line was building to, but Westworld’s always up for an off-the-wall surprise, so it’s possible.
A copy of Dolores
We’re not really sure if hosts can copy their consciousnesses. In fact, it would seem pretty world-breaking if they could, but it’s not impossible. We know that Dolores was fused with Wyatt at some point in the park’s history, so maybe she split the Wyatt part of herself off and put it in Charlotte. We admit that this theory, while definitely plausible, seems a little far-fetched, even for Westworld.
This one actually seems pretty likely. The host is smart and capable, and she’s proven herself to be a loyal soldier for Dolores. If Dolores’ goal was to bring allies with her into the real world, Angela is certainly near the top of the list.
Maeve or one of her gang
The idea here is that Charlotte is currently occupied by Maeve, Armistice, or Hector Escaton. The problem here is that we don’t really have any reason to believe that this group’s interests align with the interests of Dolores. And since she’s the one that put the brain into the Charlotte body, it would be hard to believe she’s throw in the mind of an enemy.
Clementine has never seemed like a keen strategist, so it’s unlikely she’d be a lot of help in the boardroom. Likewise, her newfound host-controlling powers may make her a god in the Delos parks, but they’re not going to do much for her in the real world, making this seem pretty unlikely.
Dolores’ father was the key to everything last season, and is one of Delos’ prized possessions, but this seems like a bit of a stretch. He was a retired host, and we know for sure that Dolores had his mind with her more than a few times, but it’s not clear why he would be transferred into Charlotte. Of course, it’s possible that Dolores just wants him around again, but then why use up one of your best strategic assets?
This is easily the most mastermind-level plot twist possible. Ford was always trying to provide Dolores with a chance to escape. What if the reason he did that was so that she could implant a version of Ford — think along the lines of the Bernard version of Arnold — in a host copy of whoever is in charge of the board, thereby putting himself at the head of Delos. This would be absolutely ludicrous, but also very fittingly Westworld.