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'Westworld' is a Dizzying, Timely Mash-up of VR, Reality TV and Political Theater

‘Westworld’ is a Dizzying, Timely Mash-up of VR, Reality TV and Political Theater

Have you ever questioned the nature of your reality? I ask not only because it’s the first question you hear in the new series Westworld, premiering this Sunday on HBO, but because right now nothing needs a reality check more than reality itself: • Donald Trump refused to explain his birther flip-flop in Monday night’s debate; he’s now among the fairly slim 28 percent of registered Republicans who actually think President Obama was born in the United States. Much of the pre-debate discussion focused on whether moderator Lester Holt would “fact check,” i.e., assert reality in the face of misrepresentation, during the event. • The Bachelor and Keeping Up With the Kardashians have become strange concoctions of reality, staged reality and fourth-wall busting real-life and social-media interactions that may or may not be part of the show. Producers on the Real Housewives now sometimes appear as characters, and it has become increasingly difficult to distinguish producer…

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