In “Fidelity,” Caleb (Aaron Paul) says this short, powerful line to another Caleb (also Aaron Paul). Both Calebs, along with many other Calebs, are in a unique hell. Already devastated by the news that he didn’t stop Hale (Tessa Thompson) from taking over the world 23 years ago, he finds out that, as a Host who hasn’t reached fidelity, he’s starting to break down.
Hale has made 277 copies of Caleb because she wants to figure out how he was able to fight off her mind-control parasite and become the first Outlier. She hopes that if she can figure it out, Outliers won’t be able to “infect” her Hosts and make them kill themselves. When Caleb was human, he teased Hale by saying she knew how he got away from her control, so all she had to do was make more Calebs until she figured it out.
Hale tells him all of this in his cell and brings in a funny-looking hourglass to show that he is about to die. She also tells him that his daughter Frankie (Aurora Perrineau) is still alive. This makes Caleb cry tears of bittersweet joy, which is a powerful moment played by Paul, even though Hale teases him by putting one of her Hosts in Frankie’s Outlier rebellion to mess with him. After Hale leaves, the windows in Caleb’s cell become clear, giving him another shocking realisation: he’s not alone. There are several other Host versions of himself in cells like his, and they are all falling apart in different ways.
It’s the first of many times in “Fidelity” when Caleb is forced to face the fact that he’s no longer a human. But luckily, a very bad version of Caleb tells our Caleb that he needs more time, so he checks the hourglass and finds a small cartridge in it. The cartridge knocks him out, making it look like he’s dead. When one of Hale’s Drone Hosts presses the button to end the mission, fire shoots out of the ceiling. The only way out is through a grate in the floor, which has a mysterious little arrow on it that shows how to open it.
When Caleb gets away, he falls into a pile of bones and ash, which are obviously the bodies of other Calebs who didn’t get away. As he moves through the Olympiad Entertainment building, he starts to see signs that another Caleb has escaped in the same way. A handprint of a pale Caleb is on a wall, where he braced himself. After getting into a fight with a Drone Host, he sees a bloody handprint on the wall. This shows that another Caleb had been in the same fight and maybe even got hurt in the same way.
But nothing is worse than what Caleb sees when he crawls into the vents. There is a dying Caleb by an opening, and when our Caleb looks down it, he sees a huge drop with the bloody bodies of two other Calebs who were so desperate to get out that they jumped off the drop. Caleb, who is on his deathbed, comes up with a plan: he will act as a human cushion so that our Caleb can survive the fall. Even though it’s a sacrifice, both Calebs want to get in touch with Frankie. They fall. Our Caleb lives. The death of the other Caleb is terrible. Caleb finally gets to the roof of the building, where he uses the radio on a construction lift to talk to Frankie.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that Hale helped Caleb get away. If other Calebs had taken the same path, Hale would have figured it out before Caleb #278. She would have looked everywhere in the building for him to make sure he didn’t really get away. But Caleb doesn’t find out until after he’s delivered his message and Hale shows up with the cartridge she left in the hourglass. She tells him she’s been waiting a long time for him to get far enough away so she can hear the message and see if it has any clues. Hale breaks Caleb’s neck and orders a new Caleb Host to be made when it doesn’t work.
If you give it more than a minute of thought, none of this makes sense. Why did Hale go to so much trouble to get away? If everything had to be just right for Caleb to send a message to Frankie, does that mean she made copies of Caleb to put in other jail cells to scare him and give him a hint about where the cartridge was? Did she put the other Calebs there, or did she leave the bodies around the building on purpose for him to find? Also, why did Hale let this happen in the real world instead of in a simulation, which would have saved a lot of time and money?
When I was watching “Fidelity,” I didn’t care at all about these questions because it was so fun to be scared, and I still don’t care that much about them now. When Westworld is interesting, I can always wave my hands around. What bothers me more than anything else are the two flashback scenes that are thrown into the episode. The first is of little Frankie getting a cut on her knee and not wanting to walk on it. Caleb gives her a pep talk and tells her how he resisted Hale’s flies in a very cheesy way: “Do you know what kind of person can’t be beat? The type that keeps trying.”
In the second, young Frankie finds young Outlier Jay with his mother right after Hale has taken over the world. After they get away, Frankie says that Jay could be her new brother, but Jay, who lost his own brother because of Hale’s anti-Outlier plans, says that’s not true.
In the present, Frankie and Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) are on their way to the ruined Mobworld to save Maeve (Thandiwe Newton). When Bernard tells Frankie how much he knows about fixing Hosts, Frankie is suspicious. He is even more suspicious when Bernard shows that even the rooms in Mobworld can scan a person’s data instantly by scanning Frankie. She still wants Maeve to be rebuilt, though, because she knew Maeve from a long time ago, when she came to their house to tell them to hide. Frankie thinks that Maeve must know what happened to her father if anyone does.
When the other rebels join them in Mobworld, Jay (Daniel Wu) tells them that Hale saw them coming and that one of them is a traitor. Frankie shoots Bernard right away because she knew he was a Host as soon as he took her scanned information, which could be used to make a Host copy of her. “It’s hard,” Bernard said, which is why he made a copy. Sigh.) But, much to Jay’s dismay, she wants both Bernard and Stubbs to live at least long enough for Maeve to be finished. So, Bernard can tell Frankie later that one of the rebels who came back is one of Hale’s Hosts, but he doesn’t know which one it is. Frankie finds out it’s Jay when he says something about being like a brother to her. The clumsy flashback from earlier helped her figure it out. They get into a big fight, and at the last second, Maeve, who has just woken up, kills Jay and saves Frankie. Finish.
Still, “Fidelity” is a good episode thanks to Caleb’s storyline, which is a classic Westworld mind-fuck. It’s good enough that I don’t mind that the rest of “What the Hell Is Going on With Christina?” has to wait another week (or more). But there are only two episodes left, and the world is still under Hale’s control, Caleb is still useless, Christina is probably Dolores but has lost her memory, and Bernard still isn’t telling anyone what the plan is. Season four is a big step up from last season, but Westworld needs to pick up the pace.
Bernard says that Hale has one of those mega-simulators, which makes me feel good about my theory that Dolores is in it making stories for the people in the real world who are controlled by Hale. You’re telling me that there’s a way to find people who escape Hale’s mind control from a distance, but there’s no way to tell the difference between a Host and a human? Like, shouldn’t everyone in the rebellion sometimes have to go through a metal detector?
How can the Drone Hosts hear someone blink but not tell who it is, even with that map that shows where Outliers are?
Hale didn’t replace Jay yet, so how did she know the rebels were coming to the city? And does this have anything to do with the story or is it just a plot hole? You never know what will happen in Westworld.
One of Caleb’s memories is of him and his daughter walking through a field. It looks almost exactly like Maeve’s memories of her and her daughter walking through a field. Is this just a coincidence, or does Caleb’s core contain some of Maeve’s data?
Do nurses really eat pudding from unconscious patients, or was Caleb’s future wife a monster of the highest order?