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Breaking down Westworld season 3’s biggest mystery: who is Charlotte Hale’s host?

(Image credit: HBO)

Charlotte Hale has been many things during her short stint in Westworld: Tessa Thompson’s duplicitous character has worn the hat of Delos board member, Incite mole, and – most intriguingly – as a new host, one who replaced the ‘original’ Hale during the season 2 finale.

If Westworld fans love one thing, it’s a mystery that needs cracking. After Dolores smuggled a literal handful of her robot pals out of the park in sphere-shaped modules containing their programming, one was placed in Hale. As of the third episode of Westworld season 3, this unidentified host is struggling to come to terms with their new life – and role – in the real world.

But who could it be? Someone fresh? Familiar? We’ve trawled social media, Reddit, and scoured our own knowledge banks for the answer, including some of the weirdest and wildest Westworld season 3 theories so far. Some of these may not look like anything at all at first glance – but just one could be the key to cracking the whole thing wide open.

Caleb

(Image credit: HBO)

Cards on the table. This is the most ‘out there’ Westworld season 3 theory yet. But it’s not entirely implausible.

Redditor meregodly posits that Westworld is once again playing with time and that every scene involving Dolores befriending Caleb (and vice-versa) takes place at some unknown point before Dolores instructs Hale to find the mole in Delos.

There are also some odd consistencies between Caleb and host Hale that stick out and make this theory a lot more realistic than it first seems.

Episode 3 shows that Caleb will likely kill himself in a decade according to Robohaman’s projections, while Hale is seen self-harming on several occasions. That self-destructive tendency could be Caleb’s true self breaking through, while Dolores’ face-to-face with Hale in the hotel room also included one telling line of dialogue: that she “trusts” the host. Why else would the show dedicate so much time to building up the pair’s relationship if it wasn’t for the ultimate betrayal?

Whoever it is, Dolores feels like they can pull off her plan; the show has made it clear that Dolores clearly cares about Caleb and vice-versa. Plus, it would be a fulfilling twist in a show that’s been known to pull off more than one Reddit-breaking rug-pull in its time. What’s one more to add to the collection?

Teddy

(Image credit: HBO)

Teddy, the former cowpoke lover of Dolores Abernathy played by James Marsden, is perhaps the most obvious candidate for the host inhabiting Charlotte Hale’s body, despite being uploaded to The Valley Beyond. After all, Dolores would do anything to stay with Teddy, even smuggling her beau out of Westworld and into the real world. That would also explain why Hale looks so thoroughly confused in her new body – Teddy never could quite acclimatise to the world falling down around him.

Then, there are interesting parallels picked out by those on social media. That includes this mirror picked out on Twitter – with Dolores cradling Teddy as he lay dying in one, and spooning the host Hale in another. Look familiar?

But this is almost too obvious. Westworld is many things, but it’s not predictable. The narrative and logical reasons may be compelling, but Dolores’ cold, cold heart may want someone a little more pliable and without a major emotional attachment to rely upon. Someone like…

Clementine

(Image credit: HBO)

Who else could’ve been swiped from under the noses of Delos? As Dolores has five hosts, there’s every chance that those she was close to during her time both as character and liberator are fair game. That includes Clementine, one of the first-generation hosts that Dolores would likely be more ‘in sync’ with.

Perhaps Dolores is more forward-thinking, though, than simply deciding to bring back a steady old hand. Clementine could be used as an effective pawn in what we now know (thanks to the Westworld season 3 trailers) is an impending showdown between Dolores and Thandie Newton’s Maeve. If her grand reveal stops Maeve in her tracks, then she and Serac’s schemes potentially fall by the wayside, leaving Dolores to kickstart her robotic revolution.

William/The Man in Black

(Image credit: HBO)

A couple of social media sleuths have arrived at the same conclusion: that William, better known as The Man in Black, has either had his data copied over into a host thanks to the Forge or is now a host. Period.

One suggests that The Man in Black is Hale, which could be in tune with the host’s current volatile nature. That could theoretically be an after-effect from being produced by the Forge. Remember, season 2 left open the possibility of any guest in the park being duplicated into a host. The (real) William having to hunt down the Man in Black is a story almost too good to pass up.

Another feeds into our final theory: that Dolores is Hale and, in a mind-bending twist, The Man in Black (either an original host or a copy of William’s guest data) is playing the part of Dolores. Confusing? You bet. But it’d carve out its own place on the show’s Mount Rushmore of twists in record time if that’s the path the show decides to head down.

Dolores

(Image credit: HBO)

“Who knows you better than me?” Dolores asks Hale in the first half of season 3. Well, quite. Who knows Dolores better than herself? A perfect (or imperfect, as the case may be) copy of Dolores is not only a terrifying thought, but it makes the most sense when you think about just how many multi-layered plans and double-crosses Dolores will undoubtedly have planned. The players unwittingly being moved around the board in her little game can barely deal with one Dolores, so two is downright unfair on her part.

Whether you can duplicate a host so readily is open for debate, though Ford would likely have had a backup held in storage. So, if such an opportunity were to arise – and given Dolores’ close relationship to both of her makers in Ford and Bernard – then she’d certainly be able to pull it off. It also expands upon the show’s concerns with trusting AI. A twist involving Dolores not being able to put her own clone on a leash could finally make her see the light and leave her feeling more human than host at the prospect of a technological takeover.

GamesRadar+'s Entertainment Writer. Lover of all things Nintendo, in a tortured love/hate relationship with Crystal Palace, and also possesses an unhealthy knowledge of The Simpsons (which is of no use at parties).