This 'Westworld' Theory About Charlotte & Ford Has Fans' Heads Exploding

John P. Johnson/HBO

At this point, trying to figure out what's going on in Westworld is basically a full-time job. In the Season 2 finale, fans finally learned what really went down in the Valley Beyond, aka the Forge, and the reveal changed everything we know about the HBO series — and made it infinitely more confusing. By the end of the episode, bodies had been swapped left and right, leaving fans uncertain of who exactly is inhabiting the bodies of Bernard, Dolores, and Delos exec-turned-host Charlotte Hale. Is Ford's brain in Charlotte's body? One theory suggests that despite his emotional goodbye to Bernard, Ford isn't leaving Westworld after all. Warning: Spoilers for Westworld Season 2 finale follow.

When Westworld revealed that each host has a portable brain unit, I figured that there would be some degree of body swapping, but I didn't expect the Season 2 finale to go full-on Invasion of the Body Snatchers. At the end of the episode, fans learned that Bernard killed Dolores in the Forge but then instantly regretted it. Instead of simply living with the guilt, Bernard decided to bring Dolores back to life — in the host body of Charlotte. Charlotte/Dolores then killed the real Charlotte (and Bernard) and escaped the park, but she brought something very important with her into the real world: Five brain units.

Out in the real world, Charlotte/Delores rebuilt Bernard and Dolores' host bodies and inserted their brain units back inside. So, if Bernard and Dolores each have their own brain units inside their heads, whose brain unit is inside Charlotte? She spent the end of the episode hanging out with the rebuilt Bernard and Dolores, so there has to be someone controlling her body.

One theory about Charlotte and Ford looks to answer this lingering question. Could it be that Charlotte/Dolores carried Ford's brain pearl — which was cloned by Bernard and uploaded to the Cradle during Season 1 — back to the real world and implanted it into Charlotte's host body? BRB while my mind explodes.

If this theory is true, then Ford is the smartest person in the history of the world. Essentially, Ford ends up winning in two (and probably more) ways: First, he'll live on forever in the form of Charlotte (and if she ends up dying, he can always create a new host to inhabit), and second, he's sticking it to Delos by taking over the body of their prized CEO. In the future, all Delos decisions will come from Ford, not Charlotte, which will certainly change the company's direction. Hopefully, this means that the hosts will be treated better going forward, but I'm not holding my breath.


Anything is possible in Westworld, so Ford's brain being inside Charlotte is entirely plausible. The last time we saw Ford's brain unit (not the Ford projection that's been in Bernard's head), it was tucked away safely in the Cradle, but that was episodes ago — there was no mention of the actual brain unit in the finale. Sure, Angela blew up the Cradle in Episode 7, so it's possible that Ford's brain unit was a casualty, but it seems more likely that Ford hid a spare copy somewhere in case the original unit was destroyed. After all, Ford has predicted literally everything that's happened in Season 2, so wouldn't he also be able to see the explosion coming?

If Ford's brain is in Charlotte's body, Bernard's brain is in Bernard's body, and Dolores' brain is in Dolores' body, that leaves three remaining brain units out in the real world. Who do these belong to? Could it be Maeve, the all-powerful host? Or maybe Bernard copied Elsie's mind into a brain unit?

Season 3 needs to arrive ASAP, because if I have to wait another 16 months to get these answers, I'm going to need a new brain unit.