As part of their final promotional push for the new season of Westworld, British broadcasting company Now TV decided to scare the ever-loving shit out of some poor Londoners who were just trying to get a drink. They did this by placing “Fred”—a humanoid robot that’s about as close as you can get to a real-life Westworld host, meaning: not very—inside a London pub where he engaged patrons in idle conversation about the weather, upcoming HBO premieres, and the inevitable robotic revolution. Needless to say, people were pretty freaked.
According to Mashable, Fred was constructed over three months by robotics specialists at Engineered Arts. Judging by the video, this process involved a lot less of that white goop from Westworld and much more threading of gross little hairs through fake skin. The end result is a man who falls somewhere in the uncanny valley despite his convincing facial features and tweed jacket. But, if you were sitting in that pub and had had a few drinks, you might not take a second glance at the guy in the corner with the weird posture and awkwardly moving mouth.
The pub-goers who were lucky enough to share a table with Fred were treated to some uncomfortable conversation, no doubt intended to mirror the creepy unpredictability of the robots from the show. But, considering all of Fred’s lines are so clearly ADR’d, it’s difficult to tell how creepy the experience really was. Still, we doubt anyone trying to enjoy their after-work pint would be happy to hear, “Do you want to meet your maker?” from a guy with a violently spasming face.
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