|“||There's something I'd like you to try. It's a game; a secret. It's called, The Maze.||”|
– Arnold Weber
|“||In some circles, the maze is rumored to be the sum of a man’s life. At its center lies a man who has been killed over and over—only to come back to life. To keep out his oppressors, he built the maze.||”|
–Aeden, on discoverwestworld.com
The Man in Black convinced himself that this is a narrative that Arnold Weber wrote for guests. However, he was mistaken because the maze is not a narrative for guests. This maze symbol is seen throughout the park: on a tarot card, on a branding iron, plowed into a field, drawn into the ground, on coffins and a table top, and inside the scalp of the Indian, Kissy.
Arnold modeled his theory of creating consciousness on his child's ball-in-a-maze game. Arnold told Dolores that The Maze was a secret "game" for her. Dolores is 'led' along on her path to consciousness by the voice of Arnold.
The Man in Black rides up to a hanging, greets Lawrence by name, and after a brief conversation with Sheriff Reed, he kills everyone except the condemned man. The Man in Black removes Lawrence's blindfold and and throws him Kissy's scalp. He tells Lawrence that he wants to find the entrance to The Maze, and binds Lawrence's hands before riding away with Lawrence towed along behind.
The Man in Black is still towing Lawrence and questioning him about Kissy. He takes Lawrence home, where they sit at a table outside a Mexican cafe. Lawrence's wife and Lawrence's Daughter are there. The Man in Black tries to get Lawrence to tell him the entrance to the maze, Lawrence denies any knowledge and the Man in Black shoots the cafe owner, other men and then Lawrence's wife. The girl doesn't act alarmed. She eventually tells the Man in Black that The Maze isn't meant for him, but says to follow the "Blood Arroyo to the place where the snake lays its eggs."
Arnold offers to take away Dolores' feelings of grief about her dead parents, but Dolores doesn't want him to do this. She claims that her grief is the only thing she has left of them; this phrase has been said by other hosts, including Bernard and Maeve. As the conversation progresses, Dolores reveals that she feels that there is either something wrong with her world or with herself, and that she thinks she may be losing her mind. Arnold asks Dolores to play a secret game: The Maze. The goal of this game is to find the center of the maze, at which point Dolores will become "free". Dolores replies that she thinks she wants to be free.
Lawrence's daughter draws a Maze into the ground with a stick when Dolores meets her.
The symbol is seen twice by Dolores in this episode. The first instance is on a tarot card that she takes from a Fortune Teller. The second instance is when she sees it on top of a wooden coffin. The Man in Black speaks with Dr. Ford about The Maze in a bar.
The symbol is seen three times. It is carved into a table that Ford passes in Las Mudas, it is drawn on a page in the journal that he is looking at and the soldiers' branding iron is shaped like the Maze.
Teddy tells the Man in Black that the Maze is "the sum of a man's life" and that according to myth there is a man in the center who has been killed many times, but always came back to life. He supposedly returned one last time to defeat his enemies and built the Maze around his house to keep them out.
The Man in Black tells Teddy that "the Maze revealed itself" to him when he killed Maeve and her daughter, and the Maze can be seen in the soil of the homestead.
When Angela mentions Escalante, the Man in Black says that the Maze is taking him "full circle". In a conversation with Arnold, Dolores says that the Maze brought her pain.
At the graveyard behind the church, Dolores digs out a wooden box that contains a Maze game. Arnold explains to her that he realized that consciousness is not a journey upward, as he had previously assumed, but a journey inward, like a maze. Dolores returns to the graveyard with the Man in Black. When she digs out the Maze again, he does not understand its meaning and becomes angry. He orders her to "unlock" the Maze but she tells him that it wasn't meant for him. After the Man in Black stabs Dolores, Ford finds him and explains that the park's narratives are games like the Maze, which is not for him but for the hosts. Ford later tells Dolores that the Maze was a test of empathy and imagination, and that she solved it after Arnold made the Reveries update. When Dolores is alone in the old field lab, she realizes that she has found the center of the Maze and understands what she has to do. Before Ford introduces his new narrative, he gives Bernard the Maze game.
- The design of the Maze in "The Bicameral Mind" differs from the design in previous episodes.