This season of Westworld seemed to have moved on from the "who is a human, who is a host" question that pervaded last year. Truth is, there were just way more important things to worry about like "a host army coming to blow up the cradle and all the host backups contained within" for anyone to really worry about who was a host and who wasn't. This is why the sudden revelation at the very end of the Westworld Season 2 finale was something of a head turner. Is Stubbs a host on Westworld? Warning: Spoilers for Westworld Season 2 finale follow.
Stubbs' identity as a human or host was a hotly debated subject all during Season 1. His disappearance in the park meant those who thought him human worried he was dead. Those who thought him host couldn't wait for him to turn up as part of the anti-human army. So when Season 2 kicked off and neither of those situations was true, fans sort of dropped the subject.
Stubbs survived being taken prisoner by the Ghost Nation and then made it back to the lab just in time to not stop the host invasion. Fine, he was probably human. Frankly, there were bigger problems.
With viewers so distracted from the question all season, the revelation at the end of the finale Stubbs is most likely a host after all took everyone by surprise.
When Stubbs stopped the Dolores-as-Charlotte host on her way to the boat to the mainland, it's not clear whether he knows who he's stopping. This is could be him taking his moment of petty power to make trouble for someone who has been a terrible person to him for the duration of the Season 2.
But then he starts talking, and from the moment he says Ford hired him "so many years ago I can hardly remember it," the warning lights start flashing. This sounds an awful lot like Bernard, back in Season 1, before anyone knew he was a host.
But for the slow ones in the back, the show had to spell it out. And they did with three little words (emphasis mine):
He was very clear about my role here, who I was supposed to be loyal to. Guess you could call it 'my core drive.'
Stubbs is a host. A host programmed to be loyal to Ford and the park. And moreover, he's programmed to recognize other hosts. (Except for Bernard, who was most likely created before he was, and who Ford would think to program Stubbs to not be able to read.)
But he can read Charlotte. He knows the woman going to the mainland is not the real deal.
Dolores-as-Charlotte is definitely panicking, the moment she hears those words. She has a gun in her purse. She could gun him down if he tries to stop her. But Stubbs is wrestling with his core drive. After all, there is no more Ford to be loyal to now. He's not sure what this faux Charlotte is up to. But just maybe, he should be loyal to the plans being carried out by his own kind.
After all, he's only responsible for hosts inside the park. What she does out there is not his problem, is it?
But this raises a whole new question, one fans thought was put to bed this season. If Stubbs is a host and has been keeping his host-ness on the down low the whole time, who else is not really human? How many hosts are their floating among Ford's hand chosen staff? Could Lee or Elsie turn up with extra spare bodies in Season 3?
It's going to be a long wait until next season.