With the second season of “Westworld” upon us, HBO has high hopes the sophomore series will continue growing into a bona fide hit. But if there’s ambitions that the sci-fi saga can reach the kind of audience the network’s reigning hit, “Game of Thrones,” does, that’s doubtful.
If the latest episodes are any indication, the “Westworld” narrative remain too complicated for the show’s own good. While dense mythology is a fixture of other TV greats like ABC’s “Lost,” “Westworld” seems to have too much faith viewers will be willing to absorb storylines that can border on the incomprehensible.
While killer robots and blood-soaked violence are the ingredients of a TV crowd-pleaser, “Westworld” isn’t as accessible a series as some of the true hits that have graced premium networks and streaming services in recent years. There will be a very vocal core fan base willing to do the homework of piecing together the show’s many mysteries, but that’s not broad enough a base to be the kind of flagship series HBO wants.
It will be interesting to see if HBO will have the capacity to spend top dollar on such a lavish production for years to come if “Westworld” isn’t the “Thrones”-sized hit the network hoped it would be.