Depending on your take on whether harrowing, dizzyingly multilayered television is a gift or a burden, HBO either has a new gift or burden for you. After debuting its new series, Westworld, this Sunday, the premium cable network has released the both emotionally and intellectually exciting/draining first episode — written by creators Lisa Joy and Jonathan Nolan and directed by Nolan — online to watch for free (even for non-subscribers.)
A few critics haven’t been so entranced by the series, but for me, this troubling show seems very self-aware, and provokes an endless series of thoughts about the ontological implications of “entertainment” on the brink of a virtual reality boom. The pilot is balletically well paced, and will consistently uproot expectations you may have about the show.
But instead of continuing to talk about it on my part, and for you, instead of continuing to read about on your part, you can now watch the pilot here (video content is NSFW):