If chaos is going to take control, as the tagline for Westworld season 2 so ominously states, where does that leave the man in charge of the park’s security? Ashley Stubbs, played by Luke Hemsworth, is tasked with keeping guests safe and disturbances under control. His job is infinitely harder now with Dolores beating the maze and leading an uprising in the season one finale. Beyond getting the dangerous hosts offline as season two begins, there’s a larger mystery in play about what Stubbs’ role is. He’s shown some authority in the past, but is he too just a pawn in a bigger, corporate game?
“Poor little Stubbs, he’s constantly peeking over people’s shoulders and saying, ‘Hey, what’s happening? Can I be in this conversation?’” Hemsworth joked to Den of Geek at a Westworld press day.
“I think that’s a question we played with right from the beginning. Who does Stubbs actually work for? Who does he owe his allegiance to? Who is this Delos corporation? Who does he call at the end of the day?”
Westworld Season 2 will reveal the answers to some of those questions. Another point of friction is the introduction of a mysterious character named Karl Strand, played by Gustaf Skarsgård.
“Stubbs will say that he has authority over Strand and Strand will say that he has authority over Stubbs. Plus, he’s a Skarsgard. Everyone knows the Skarsgards and the Hemsworths are going to throw down.”
While the Skarsgards versus the Hemsworths would be the ultimate brothers/actors battle, Gustaf and Luke had a unique set of challenges on the Westworld set. Luke did make a cameo in Thor: Ragnarok, sharing the screen with his brother, Chris, who stars as Thor. Even a small role like that is a tightly kept secret in the highly confidential making of a Marvel movie. Westworld is a different beast altogether. Often times the actors were kept in the dark about their characters and the larger narrative arcs of the season.
“They told us nothing this season. Again, that’s part of the surrender I think. You learn to deal with it and you learn to be fluid and you learn to go where you’re needed when you’re needed, instantly. You know that they are doing things on purpose, and you could ask [Jonathan Nolan] and Lisa [Joy] questions all day long and they’ll skirt around and change the subject,” Hemsworth said.
“Jonathan by the end would be like, ‘OK, that’s your one question.’ And then would walk off.”
You can bet Hemsworth will be asking questions with the rest of us when Westworld season 2 premiere on April 22nd at 9:00 p.m. on HBO.