Get ready for a new world. In Season 3 of HBO’s hit series Westworld—subtitled The New World—the show takes fans into the future. Following two seasons that mostly took place within the titular Westworld and its connected parks, this season branches out into the larger futuristic world.
With new parks, new locations, and new characters—including Men’s Journal’s January/February cover star Aaron Paul—the show is hoping to inject some major excitement into the new season. Actors like Evan Rachel Wood and Tessa Thompson are returning, but Paul and a number of other cast members are coming in to give the series some new blood—sometimes literally.
Here’s the Season 3 trailer to give you a quick refresher:
Here are five things you need to know about Westworld Season 3, premiering in 2020:
Where Things Left Off on Westworld
At the end of Westworld Season 2, things got explosive. The park was left in shambles, with many of the Hosts (like Thandie Newton’s Maeve) destroyed, while Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) uploaded the consciousness of them into a safe place. The character of Dolores takes over a Host body of Charlotte Hale (Tessa Thompson) and makes her escape from the park—taking five control units of different Hosts’ consciousness—with her into the real world. In a final scene that serves as a flash-forward, William (Ed Harris) finds himself in the far future being interviewed by someone who looks like his daughter Emily (Katja Herbers), who he previously thought was dead.
Here’s When Season 3 Takes Place and Where Things Start Off
When things pick up in Westworld, there won’t be a time jump at the beginning of the season—at least not right away. The storyline will pick up soon after the Season 2 finale in Los Angeles. It’ll deal with what happens to Dolores in the outside world.
“We’re looking at the aftermath of the massacre in the park,” co-creator Lisa Joy told Entertainment Weekly. “After all they went through to get out of the park, Dolores finally got what she wanted, so we wanted to see how she interacts with the world and what her plan is. That’s a part of the story we were excited to tell.”
Aaron Paul Is In—Plus More New Cast Members
Paul is set to play Caleb in the new season, a construction worker who will be interacting with Dolores quite a bit. Caleb will have a robot sidekick named George (seen in the photo with Paul above), which is a Delos model G-267 robot. Along with Paul, the new cast includes musician Scott “Kid Cudi” Mescudi, Lena Waithe, Vincent Cassel, and former NFL player Marshawn Lynch, who now is back as an active player after signing with the Seahawks in December 2019. (News from HBO.)
“Aaron’s character will challenge Dolores’ notions about the nature of humanity,” co-creator Jonathan Nolan told EW. “He’s the type of person who doesn’t get to go to Westworld.”
“He was like a kid in a candy shop,” Evan Rachel Wood said about Paul in his Men’s Journal cover story. “I get like that about the show sometimes, so I loved that I had another person there that could geek out as much as me.” She calls Paul one of those special humans, because of the energy he puts out and the immense talent he has. “He’s able to pull this emotion up from the depths of his soul that is so believable,” says Wood. “I think we, honestly, have yet to see the full range of Aaron Paul.”
There Will Be a New Park With a WWII Theme
Even though the show is moving away from the titular Westworld theme park, it won’t be park-free in Season 3. The trailer shows off Newton’s Maeve in a brand new park, this time with a World War II theme. There hasn’t been much detail given on how this park will factor into the story yet, but it could connect to similar themes that the Westworld park had on the show.
“Part of the story plays out in the Western United States, and that’s a thematic through-line in the show — the American West as a setting and an ethos,” Nolan said to EW. “The idea of the West as a wild place, where just over the next hill or horizon there are no rules. On that thematic level, Dolores emerges to figure out what happened to the real West. And the answer is: We paved the thing over, and civilization eventually caught up with all those people who were running away from it.”
Season 3 Will Be Easier to Follow
Westworld has always been a complicated show to follow, but Season 2 took that to another level. With multiple timelines, secret Hosts, characters taking over other bodies, and dream sequences, the second season was a pretty complicated one. This time around, Nolan and Joy are planning something a bit simpler, at least by their standards.
“This season is a little less of a guessing game and more of an experience with the hosts finally getting to meet their makers,” Nolan said to EW.
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