John P. Johnson/HBO

Why Did Peter Abernathy Malfunction On 'Westworld'? He Saw Something He Wasn't Supposed To

The premiere episode of Westworld feels so long ago, but what happened in that episode hasn't lost significance. Many things occurred in the first episode of HBO's latest epic series, but one of the intriguing highlights involved the malfunction of Dolores' father, which resulted in his decommission. So why did Peter Abernathy malfunction on Westworld? As a host, Abernathy wasn't supposed to be able to see anything that wouldn't make sense of his narrative or proved that there was a world outside of Westworld. However, in the first episode Abernathy found a picture of a woman in a present-day city and it confused him, causing him to malfunction.

Abernathy was the first to voice the now popular line, "These violent delights have violent ends," from Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet to Dolores, who then passed it along to Maeve. Ford brought Abernathy in for questioning and after he acted strangely, Ford sent him down to the basement and replaced him with another host. However, recently Charlotte and Lee brought Abernathy back online and put him back into Westworld, which will surely cause problems at some point. Before Abernathy makes his return, though, the picture that caused him to malfunction has reappeared in the show and it turns out it's actually a picture of Logan's sister, who also happens to be William's fiancée.


When Logan showed the picture to William, it looked fairly new and recent. However, when Abernathy found the photo, it appeared to be old and weathered, as if it'd been around for a long time. Many fans believe this is confirmation of the two timelines theory and that what's happening with William and Logan happened 30 years ago and the Man in Black and Maeve's storylines are in the present-day. Otherwise, why would the same photo look brand new one minute and old the next? The photo also supports the theory that the Man in Black and William are actually the same person.

In the first episode, fans saw the Man in Black at Dolores house, so it's possible he dropped it there at some point and that's how Abernathy found it. It seems Westworld is coming full circle, just in time for the finale and it looks like all these different plot lines will finally come together. But if that's the case, then we should expect for William or Logan to eventually encounter Abernathy at some point and show him the photo in order for it to trigger his malfunction 30 years later.

Make sure to tune in for the season finale of Westworld on Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. You won't want to miss it!