‘Mr. Robot’ — Recap And Analysis — eps2.4m4ster-s1ave.aes
Each week, Social Underground will go over the newest episode of the hit show Mr. Robot. There will be a recap of what happened, and then some commentary on what happened and where the show might go next. Trying to figure out where this show goes is pretty difficult since there are many plots that interweave. The good thing about that is having a show that’s unpredictable. No one like knowing the end of a season at the beginning.
LAST WEEK’S RECAP: MR. ROBOT — RECAP AND ANALYSIS — EPS2.3LOGIC-B0MB.HC
Let’s just say that the beginning of this episode takes a scene right out of the ’90s. We’re talking old commercials, laugh tracks, bad green screen driving, and a sad hint towards Christian Slater having cancer. It felt like an episode of Two and a Half Men, but I’m not changing the channel. It goes on longer than you think it will, but the show is so creative in doing this that you can’t no respect thing. It even has an opening theme song and montage of the main characters. If you decided to smoke pot before watching it, you might have to call 911. It doesn’t stop after the theme song. Even the USA logo is made to look old. The only thing different from shows from the ’90s is the mother doesn’t typically put a cigarette out on your arm and punch you in the face.
They stop at a gas station that happens to be owned and operated by E Corp. As the opening scenes play out, I pretty much surmised that Elliot was knocked out in the hospital after hef got the crap kicked out of him by Ray and crew last week. It’s amazing how this bit is a really dark scene with a laugh track. Imagine putting on The Thing and having a laugh track after each horrifying line of dialogue. That’s what this was. It’s so different from anything on television. The photo above of Elliot reacting to each part nails what the audience is feeling… which is the point.
Then out of nowhere is ALF. Yep, ALF. Remember the alien that wants to eat cats? He shows up.
We’re only 7:20 in and I don’t remember blinking. After he drops so funny lines, Angela shows up as the cashier. Elliot’s parents rush in, blind her, and then they rob the place. Seriously, the laugh tracks really mess with your mind. When you think the ’90s throwback will end, it keeps going. Elliot happens to look in the rear-view mirror of the little road trip with his family to see what I believe to be himself getting beat up, but then a tire blows out. Ol’ Dad gets a donut tire out of the trunk, but there is someone tied up back there (Willick). Typical. Oh, then the police show up.
Mr. Robot once again shows that it can mess with advertisements. All of them are throwbacks: Bud Light ads, old USA ads made for the show, which uses the mask, and then there are E Corp ads from the era. Nearly 13 minutes in and we get more ALF. How does he show up? HE RUNS OVER THE COP WITH HIS CAR (played by the dead Gideon)!
We’re still going here, people. ALF just murdered a police officer and drive off. Elliot’s face is my entire face while watching this. It’s so jarring and unexpected that I pinched my arm to make sure I wasn’t dreaming, hallucinating or both.
“Ah ha! I kill me!” — ALF.
15 minutes in and Elliot and his Dad throw Willick back into the trunk after Elliot flips out. He knows the entire scenario is insanity, but Mr. Robot tries to encourage his insanity. Elliots begins to think he has completely lost it, but Mr. Robot tells him this is all temporary because he did get the crap beat out of him. He starts to try to comfort Elliot because he got beat up so bad, then he pushes him towards the hospital where he wakes up. The bad thing is, is that Ray is at his bedside.
Nope. Ray shows the he is a monster by describing the conditions of a sex slave. I’ve never seen Craig Robinson so scary before. It really makes you take a step back when you realize that Robinson is a really good actor when he’s given something other than comedy to work with.
Elsewhere, Angela learns how she will work with fsociety. It really gets into tech talk to the point where Angela has to try to learn what she’s being taught. “You can’t learn how to hack in one day” is what she’s told. I know, it’s why I dropped out of my college courses for IT. Screw that.
Some weird thing happens where a guy brings a router to an a Chinese boss figure, but then gets held down and has a syringe is put in his finger to do something… but not kill him? Yet another disturbing moment in this episode. The good thing is that it FBI agent Dom survived after that major massacre to her co-workers. She questions her boss about how f*cked up the shooting was because one of the shooters killed himself after she clipped him in the leg. E Corp is also surrounded by protesters.
Darlene and fsociety start to implement its plan of dropping the device at the E Corp/FBI with the help of Angela delivering (with a few problems). It’s at this moment that I realize how much of a different tone this season has. An agent also hits on Angela when she leaves the bathroom after initiating the hack. Uh, don’t hit on a girl after she has been in the bathroom for a while. Also, don’t point out that she was in the bathroom for a while before hitting on her. Then again, she was on the wrong floor, so that is why he did that. She manages to counter him as he turns the conversation, so she hits on him to go out to eat (he’s from the sadly canceled TV show Limitless). Guys are so easy when a pretty girl hits on them. Angela then moves on to drop the devices before Darlene tells her she isn’t done because of the security footage. So far so good… then Dom shows up to talk to her mid-hack
Elliot is dragged to a dank room that is used as a prison cell for him. He is clearly losing it. When you’re insane, trauma is not the best thing for your brain. Mr. Robot appears to try and calm him down. What Mr. Robot did was try to ease the pain of him getting so hurt. Elliot breaks down and hugs Mr. Robot while thanking him. Elliot embraces the insanity.
The episode ends with Elliot talking to his real Dad explaining that he has cancer and got fired. Elliot is the only one that he has told. The most powerful part of this is that this sequence is exactly how my Dad told me he had cancer. You try to comfort your kid, but there is a buzz in your ear. His Dad pulls up to a place where he says he’s going to open up a computer store. He says Elliot can name the store. His name for the store? Mr. Robot (he doesn’t say it, but that is the name).
Let’s ask some questions:
- What the hell was with the trunk thing? Is that some weird allusion to Wellick missing because or Mr. Robot?
- What is the state of E Corp? Dom’s favorite store is going under because of it. Aww.
- How did Elliot’s Dad open up a store that fast after being fired from E Corp? What?
- Why would he take up the stress of opening up a business when he’s dying?
- How did they pull off ALF with the original voice so well? Screw it, that was awesome.
- What’s with the Chinese spies?
- How did Dom show up to Angela like that?
- Do Dom and Angela know each other?
- Do they know each other because of the investigation?
- Are they lovers? Okay, this is me hoping… but maybe?
- What the hell is going to happen to Elliot?
- Does Elliot now embrace his alter-ego?
I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Until next week!
Feature Image: USA Network
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Jeff Sorensen is an author, writer and occasional comedian living in Detroit, Michigan. You can look for more of his work on The Huffington Post, UPROXX, BGR and by just looking up his name.