Wow! Just wow! Mr. Robot is back with a bang!
Season One was dark, but this two-parter was even more visceral, claustrophobic and labyrinthine than anything dished out so far. Brilliantly acted, perfectly-paced, expertly written and set to the pumping backdrop of some fantastic music… and some Phil Collins music!
In short, everything we loved about season one.
If you’ve fallen this far down Mr Robot’s rabbit hole, we’re pretty sure you’re not just here for a recap. Nope, if you’re only after an uninspired, long-winded synopsis, head on over to IGN!
Here at mrrobothacks.com we’re dedicated to unravelling the secrets of one show and one show alone, so we understand what you want is answers. Am I right?
After last season’s successful hack on Evil Corp and that knock at the door cliffhanger, our protagonist, Elliot Alderson calmly wakes in his bedroom at his mother’s house. The life he knew – Cyber Security Engineer for Allsafe by day and vigilante hacker by night is over.
Nowadays, he spends his regimented days performing chores, eating and watching basketball with new, Seinfeld-loving best friend, Leon (Joey Badda$$) at the same time every day. Furthermore, with his weapons of choice; technology and the internet replaced by pencil and journal, Elliot finally seems to be slaying his demons. Way to go, Elliot!
Until, that is, his long-dead, arch nemesis, alter-ego father, Mr Robot rears his ugly gun-toting head again – a Dissociative Identity Disorder demon determined on taking control of poor Elliot’s deranged mind.
Only everything is not as it seems. This is a world where our eyes and ears are not to be trusted. Wunderkind writer and director Sam Esmail has created a world where seeing is not necessarily believing.
Mrs Alderson’s New York home is as darkly lit as Bates Motel and as foreboding as Shutter Island. Elliot never replies to Leon. The Basketball court hangouts seem more like designated recess time. Elliot even visits a self-help church group. Something is very wrong with this picture. In programming parlance, “Dude! This is some serious Boolean type data!”
Isn’t it obvious? Elliot’s not staying at his mother’s but instead is in prison or in a psych ward.
The internet is awash with this theory, and there’s a rash of supporting evidence: the strict waking and lights out times delivered by Nurse Ratched-like “mother”. Never-ending domestic chores. The hospital canteen-style trays he and new imaginary friend Leon eat off at 10am, 12pm and 6pm. The prison yard basketball court and its motley crew of inhabitants. The visual motif of prison-like bars running through both episodes. Not to mention Gideon Goddard’s supervised visitation before he turns informer and is surprisingly bumped off.
When asked on the official After Show, actor Rami Malek’s (obviously pre-written) description of Elliot as “committed” is being seen by fanboys as doublespeak; meaning committed to an asylum. I mean – how much more obvious can the showrunners make this?
I admit, it 100% makes sense – all evidence points to Elliot being in jail or the asylum.
Well done, Sam Esmail… you nearly fooled us again! But before I go, I must don Lieutenant Columbo’s raincoat, half close one eye and raise my hand in the air to say…
“Just one more thing…”
You see, if you were paying attention, you’ll remember I said NOTHING in the world of Mr Robot is as it seems… that ‘seeing’ is not necessarily ‘believing’. You see, there’s just waaaaay too much evidence for this prison/asylum theory and we ain’t buying it!
I. Mean. Come. On! This theory is exactly what Esmail wants you to think! After viewers outfoxed him last season, he’s cooked up and spoon-fed you a mighty big serving of Red Herring with a side of Smoke-Screen, a dollop of Crisis Actor and a Double-Bluff Duff Beer to wash it down with. And you’ve all wolfed down his Koolaid and asked for more; like the good little Evil Corp customer you are.
Nope, we here at Mr Robot Hacks know that something is rotten in the state of Denmark (where, incidentally they love their red herring pickled!) and for once we can see right through Elliot’s Hamlet-style inner monologue.
We all love this show for its multi-layered, onion-like levels of genius, right? Peel back one layer and there’s another. So stop, think and ask yourself… hasn’t the prison/asylum route been laid on too heavy-handedly? Especially for a writer who self-admittedly wants to recreate the cray cray, multi-layered, nosebleed inducing confusion of Damon Lindelof’s Lost?
The ball is your court, what do you think? Could unreliable narrator Elliot be tricking you into believing he’s in prison or a mental institution? After all, you did betray him last season!
Definitely let us know your own theories in the comments section.
Or maybe… maybe it’s all a ploy so Mr Robot can’t get too deep inside Elliot’s mind?
That said, it didn’t help save poor crisis actor Gideon’s life did it?
Speaking of which, to find out how you betrayed Elliot last season together with our theory on who ordered Gideon to be whacked, hop on over to THINGS YOU MISSED IN EPS1 & 2 here.
“I’m late for my church group… Peace!”