If you watched last night’s episode of Westworld, “The Winter Line,” there’s a good chance you caught a strangely fourth-wall-breaking cameo. Even if you missed the two human characters, you might have seen the giant, extremely popular dragon who was featured for a moment during a scene at Delos. Those humans, if you didn’t recognize them, were David Benioff and Dan Weiss, the showrunners of HBO’s Game Of Thrones. The dragon? Why, it was Drogon, of course.
This moment came care of an almost-gag wherein Bernard and Stubbs worked to infiltrate the barely-hanging-on, post-host-uprising remains of Delos where a group of technicians who were, apparently, developing an unnamed fourth park, are now waiting to see if they’re going to get laid off. The fourth park was apparently Westeros World–or, at the very least, something close to Westeros World: a sword-swinging medieval fantasy where guests would have had the opportunity to encounter Drogon, fight with battle axes, and probably become kings or queens. You know, the works. Though, given the state of Delos, it seems like the fourth park will never come to be. Weiss and Benioff’s characters quip that they may have a buyer for the Drogon host, a start-up in Costa Rica, which may or may not be another throwaway gag–a nod to Jurassic World’s InGen, another Michael Crichton pull.
Far from being an actual “crossover” of the two popular HBO shows, the Game Of Thrones cameos wound up being a slightly head-scratching moment in an otherwise strong episode, leaving fans wondering what exactly inspired such a campy turn. Thankfully, Westworld co-showrunner Jonathan Nolan sat down with THR to explain.
“We’re friends with both Dan and David, who are lovely human beings,” Nolan said. “They have been incredibly supportive and friendly with us as we were getting our show up-and-running. George R.R. Martin as well. George has frequently pitched a crossover episode. When the time came for Luke and Jeffrey’s characters to be wandering around in the bowels of the Mesa, we could not resist.”
Nolan went on to explain that the idea for a medieval park is also present in the Westworld novel, so introducing “Westerosworld” was a great way to nod back to the book. “This was an opportunity to pay homage not only to that, but also to Game Of Thrones, the show that created the opportunity for us to do this show,” Nolan said.
As for the name? Apparently we’re going to be left to our own devices on that–it’s officially Park Four, but only because they “wimped out” in Nolan’s own words. But, he continued, they’re happy to leave the real name to “the imagination of the audience.”
Westworld airs on HBO Sunday at 9PM.