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Westworld Fans Are Divided Over Season 4's Setting

After taking over a two-year break in between its third and fourth seasons, "Westworld" finally returned with a new episode on HBO in late June of this year. The show's Season 4 premiere aired well over two years after its Season 3 finale premiered in May of 2020. In typical "Westworld" fashion, the series returned looking a little different than it did before too. In case that wasn't disorienting enough, the "Westworld" Season 4 premiere also continued to play around with the show's ensemble, introducing new faces while bringing back certain actors in ways that don't initially make much sense.

However, while plenty of discussions are being had about the Season 4 premiere's various character beats and twists, there is one aspect of the episode that seems to be on the minds of a lot of "Westworld" fans right now. The detail in question has little to do with the episode's story and characters, and more to do with its setting. In specific, "Westworld" fans have been quick to note that the show's Season 4 premiere focuses on characters and storylines that exist outside of its titular, Wild West-themed park.

As was the case throughout "Westworld" Season 3, that decision has proven to be a divisive one among the show's fans.

Some Westworld fans miss the show's original park

One "Westworld" fan asserted in a Reddit post that the HBO series "was at its best in the park." The Redditor went on to admit, "I miss the park. The mystery and romance and debauchery were so spot on. I get where they're going with it but I miss where they've been." The user subsequently rounded out their post by asking their fellow "Westworld" fans if they agree about the show's departure away from its original, titular setting.

In the post's comments section, u/Sammi_Seee wrote, "Definitely. That was my main thought watching the recap," while u/marauder-shields92 admitted, "The juxtaposition of the Old West and the future tech was one of the big draws for me." However, the post also inspired a number of "Westworld" fans to explain why they're happy that the series has moved from its original setting. One Redditor, for instance, wrote, "I think [the park] would have gotten stale and outworn its welcome." Elsewhere, u/Halador_ observed, "The show always needed to progress past a simple Western-themed park to get to the meat of the story and themes of AI, consciousness, etc."

All of this is to say that it looks like the show's continued reluctance to return to its titular park is eliciting a wide range of responses from "Westworld" fans. Taking that into account, it'll be interesting to see if "Westworld" Season 4 ultimately finds some way to deliver the kind of theme park-set thrills that certain fans desperately want to see. Even if it doesn't, one small detail in "Westworld" Season 4 Episode 1 does suggest that the show's upcoming episodes may still find satisfying ways to reference the series' past.

That's an exciting possibility, regardless of whether or not it means "Westworld" ever plans on making a return trip to its original park.