The title of this week’s episode is Les Écorchés. It translates from the French to mean “a painting or sculpture of a human figure with the skin exposed to display the musculature.” In this case, it seems to refer to the reveal of the purpose of the park and the creation of Bernard. This episode could have been called “In Memoriam” and it would have been just as appropriate.
Here is a quick recap filled with SPOILERS!!!!
Last week ended with the reveal that Ford (Anthony Hopkins) was living inside the backups in the Cradle. Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) had volunteered to enter the system to see why the control systems weren’t working. Elsie was left to watch over him as his control unit was removed and put into the backups.
The episode starts with Bernard being roused from sleep by Stubbs (Luke Hemsworth) who wants to get out of the Mesa. Bernard is holding the picture of his (Arnold’s) family in his hand when he wakes. They start to leave but are stopped by Karl Strand (the excellent Gustaf Skarsgard, who plays Floki on Vikings) who was sent to retrieve them. He takes them to the same place where Bernard killed Theresa in the first season.
Hale (Tessa Thompson) is waiting for them. While Strand accuses Stubbs or being Theresa’s killer a secret door is found by the staff searching the location. They troop down the hidden passage and when Strand breaks down the door they find a surprise. Deactivated Bernards.
After the introductory credits and music we find that Bernard is now back in the control center and he is being interrogated by Hale.
She is trying to find Abernathy’s control unit by forcing Bernard to relive his memories since he was present in the Mesa according to the logs. She says, “We will find out what Dolores did with her father’s control unit.”
There is a quick jump cut to the past where Hale has Abernathy’s body and orders the extraction of his control unit. At the same time, Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and her band of merry hosts show up hellbent on killing everyone.
A team is dispatched to assist the response team in stopping the hosts. They are equipped with vests that can detect the hosts up to 30 feet away. They find the naked bodies of the response team right before they are all killed by Teddy (James Marsden) and the other hosts who now are decked out in tactical gear.
After a quick revisit to Stubbs trying to get the truth out of Hale, the show goes back to Bernard and Ford inside the system. The perfect recreation of Sweetwater seems very eerie with all the cast returned to their original state from the beginning of season one. While they talk Bernard realizes that the purpose of the park was not recreation or financial gain, it was to watch the guests. Ford says it wasn’t that the park was supposed to make hosts more human, it was to find a way to make humans like the hosts.
The action shifts to Maeve (Thandie Newton) and her daughter running from the warriors of the Ghost Nation and find themselves hiding in a farmhouse. However, it is William (Ed Harris) that enters the house and she suddenly remembers him killing her in a previous narrative to take her child.
She shoots him and he runs outside, wounded. While he is trying to get to a spot where he can shoot back at her, she uses her recently found powers over other hosts to get his henchmen to attack him.
He manages to beat two of them but finds himself disarmed and on his knees in front of her. As she raises her gun to shoot him, Lawrence (Clifton Collins Jr.) gets the drop on her and tells her to drop her weapon. She tries to use her powers on him and finds he is fully awake like her. She changes tack, convincing him to look at William and see whether he should shoot him instead. Lawrence flashes back to William killing his wife and shoots him down.
When Lawrence moves in for the kill shot, a Delos response team arrives and shoots him. Maeve watches as the Shadow Nation grabs her daughter, just like in her memory. She is screaming when she is shot as well but Lee (Simon Quarterman) is leading the team and stops them from killing her.
They leave with Maeve and return to the Mesa control center. William is shown to be alive and hiding.
Back with Hale, we see her upset over how long it is taking to download the data in Abernathy’s head. She rips out the cord and tells the tech to just remove the control unit itself.
Next, the story moves back into the system where Ford shows Bernard the house that Arnold built for his family. This is when Bernard realizes that those interviews with Dolores weren’t him doing checks on her. It was Dolores checking him for Ford, since she knew Arnold better than anyone. She was the best person to determine if he was a good facsimile of her creator.
Ford tells Bernard that he will have to lose his free will again. Then, predictably, Bernard’s control unit is reinstalled and he awakes in the Cradle to try and escape the violence that is raging through the Mesa.
Meanwhile, Dolores, Teddy, and her host army sweep into the tech area to rescue her daddy.
Dolores wants to know what they put in Abernathy that has him malfunctioning. She implies that she knows the truth about the park and what to do with the information in Abernathy’s head.
The scene shifts to Bernard sending Elsie away at the behest of Ford who is now the ghost in his shell.
A firefight is still going in the halls of the Mesa. Angela (Talulah Riley) is shot and goes down which angers Clementine (Angela Sarafyan). She takes out most of the security men before being killed herself. Angela manages to escape and heads on to finish their mission in the Cradle. A soldier follows her and she uses her skills to convince him she is seducing him after she drops her weapon. However, the whole time it was a ploy to get close to him and pull the pin on the explosives he carried. The resulting explosion rocks the whole center.
We find Dolores threatening Hale with violence to get what she wants but suddenly her father stops glitching and is again himself. The implication is that Ford leaving the Cradle via Bernard and the explosion freed him from the confusion that had recently plagued him.
An assault group causes Dolores to send Teddy to deal with them, which leads to Hale and Stubbs escaping into the nearby elevator.
We see Dolores have a tender goodbye with her father, before she removes his control unit herself.
Lee and his team arrive back at the Mesa with a wounded Maeve. The team are called away when the hosts assault the map room. As the fight continues, Ford makes Bernard shut down the Mesa completely. Dolores and her group arrive in the area and Lee manages to hide, which leaves Maeve alone and at the mercy of Dolores. After telling Dolores she made a promise to find her daughter, Maeve is left alive although Dolores came close to ending her suffering.
We see Dolores and her remaining hosts riding horses away from the Mesa before we switch to Bernard being found by an assault team and Ford takes over Bernard. He kills the assault team. Then there is a montage of Bernard moments from throughout the series that ends with him being told to open his eyes. It is Hale, still interrogating him sometime after the Mesa attack. He tells her where to find the Abernathy control unit.
A lot of loss happens in this episode on both sides. The only humans for sure alive at the end of the episode are William, Emily, Hale, Elise, Stubbs and a few techs/soldiers.
Several important hosts are “killed.” Lawrence, Angela, Clementine, Abernathy, and Angela are the important ones.
As the numbers on both side dwindle, the final confrontation seems to be fast approaching.