'Westworld' Season 3 Ending Explained: What the Ending of the HBO Show Means for Season 4

Westworld Season 3 came to an end with Episode 8, titled "Crisis Theory," an hour of television that set up an apocalyptic next season of the HBO show. The season finale sees Caleb (played by Aaron Paul) learn that humanity is almost guaranteed to end with 50-125 years after the current events of the series.

However, Bernard (Jeffrey Wright), the Charlotte Hale host (Tessa Thompson) and whatever is left of Delores (Evan Rachel Wood) have plans that are likely to play out over Westworld Season 4, which has officially been confirmed by HBO.

In "Crisis Theory," Caleb asks the supercomputer Rehoboam what the "Final Strategy" is and learns that, rather than trying to cause the end of humanity, the computer was trying to save it and mostly failing. In the next few years, humans will face a series of mass extinction events, which in a few decades time will see the species wiped out.

By the end of the Westworld Season 3 finale, Rehoboam has been taken out of the picture, and humanity is able to think for itself. In the episode, we see Caleb and Maeve (Thandie Newton) on a bridge surrounded by explosions, suggesting that the end of humanity has begun, and will be kicked up into another gear by the time of Season 4.

westworld season 3 ending
'Westworld' Season 3 ended with Bernard accessing The Sublime HBO

Though humans seem on a collision course with their own extinction at the end of the show, one of the post-credit scenes seem to suggest a way forward. In this scene, Bernard plugs himself into the Sublime, a kind of host afterlife where, it is implied, all of the human data gathered by Delos in Westworld and the other parks is gathered.

By the time he is done in the Sublime, his body has gathered dust, suggesting he has been in there for some time and will be coming into Season 4 with some big ideas about how humanity can be rebuilt.

However, someone else has another plan for the Earth. In another post-credit sequence, the Charlotte Hale host with the consciousness of Delores reveals that she has created a host replica of the Man in Black (Ed Harris), who then kills the human version. What this means for Westworld Season 4 has not been revealed, but it is hinted that the host Man in Black is part of the Halebot's plan to save the world for her kind.

Westworld Season 4, however, may be without one of the show's major cast members after Dolores "died." As Rehoboam was destroyed, it also deleted all of the host's memories. Bernard later seemed to confirm that Dolores was dead, suggesting that Evan Rachel Wood may not return.

However, the show did also set up a number of ways the actor could be back even as her character has expired. In the Season 3 finale, we learned that every host's consciousness was built on the framework created for Dolores, which might mean she can be brought back.

In a post-episode featurette, Wood also said that, "Saying goodbye to this version of Dolores—it was very sad to shoot." This might suggest that fans can expect a new version of the character when the show returns in the future.

Westworld Season 4 is coming soon to HBO.