Rehoboam: What is the meaning of the AI sphere on Westworld?

Evan Rachel Wood in Westworld
It’s a welcome return for Evan Rachel Wood in season 3 of Westworld. Pic credit: HBO

After a very long wait, the third season of Westworld is finally upon us.

If you watched last night’s premiere, then you may be left wondering what the new AI sphere referred to as Rehoboam is all about. Well, it seems to be a system for controlling the lives of humans.

This article has spoilers for Season 3 Episode 1 of Westworld.

Delores (Evan Rachel Wood) spent a lot of this first episode getting friendly with Liam Dempsey Jr., the son of an Incite founder.

This company sought to control people’s lives by using artificial intelligence, and it appears that they’re continuing in this manner and are using a system called Rehoboam to aid the process.

So, what is Rehoboam?

According to Liam, Rehoboam took 15 years to build and has endless strategies or thoughts per second, so many that it’s difficult to keep track of them all.

It was built by Liam’s father because he thought the world’s biggest problem was unrealized potential, and that they needed a way to track a path for everyone.

“If you could chart a course for every single person, you could make the world a better place,” said Liam.

The Rehoboam system is thought to keep humans on a loop from which they cannot break free. A teaser trailer for the series portrayed a timeline that was stuck in a loop.

In the episode, we see Aaron Paul’s character Caleb struggling to find a job that allows him to keep his mother in a private nursing home.

He laments the “system” that “picks the right people for the right job, which is great, I guess, but I don’t know where that leaves the rest of us, the people who didn’t make the cut.”

This is a future where humans seem to be imprisoned in a tightly controlled loop, which means they have as much control as Delos’s hosts.

The end of the episode sees Caleb run into an injured Delores; perhaps an alliance is on the cards.

The Rehoboam in Westworld
Does the Rehoboam system control people’s lives? Pic credit: HBO

We also learned in the first episode that there had been discrepancies in the data of the Rehoboam “system.”

A mysterious woman named Martel (Pom Klementieff) tells Liam that “it’s like someone is testing the system.”

The biblical Rehoboam

The old testament of the Bible states that Rehoboam was the first king of the Kingdom of Judah. He was the grandson of King David and the son of Solomon.

By all accounts, he was a fairly ineffective ruler, with the northern ten tribes rebelling and splitting the kingdom.

None of which bodes particularly well for the Rehoboam system’s future.

Westworld Season 3 returns with Episode 2 on Sunday, March 22, at 9/8c on HBO.

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