Mr. Robot eps2.1_k3rnel-pan1c.ksd
“Stop Spazzing and Be Cool”
The third episode of season 2 of Mr. Robot starts with a flashback where we learn the history of the fsociety’s arcade home base. The building’s ownership is questionable and original fsociety member Romero was its caretaker. Bank of E IT guy, Mobley, hooks Elliot and Romero up and we learn that the name of fsociety comes from the damaged sign on the arcade. Fun Society, minus the ‘un.’
Last episode left off with Elliot on the phone with what sounded like the missing Tyrell. He encourages Elliot to stay the course, but he won’t say where he is or what happened. Is it real? The call is ended by Mr. Robot, who tells Elliot that he connected Tyrell and Elliot to prove he’s still alive. Was it real? It seemed like a hallucination for Elliot’s benefit, Mr. Robot trying to win him back.
This begins Elliot’s breakdown. He’s having trouble maintaining his sane life. So he turns to Adderall. If he can take enough and stay awake long enough, he believes he can vanquish Mr. Robot. But, dad tries to stop this with a kidnapping and cement swallowing hallucination that causes Elliot to throw-up the pills. Robot and Elliot are in a battle for Elliot’s mind, would it be better if Elliot let him win? Maybe then fsociety would have a better leader, or maybe Elliot would actually be happy. Or it might just burn him down.
Elliot re-eats the thrown-up pills and keeps taking more. It releases him from Mr. Robot, for awhile. It also sends him a sleepless, manic tirade that ends with a speech to his church group straight out of a freshman dorm full of Bill Hicks inspired indignation. Elliot catches himself, leaves the group and trashes his journal.
In this episode we start to learn more about two of my favorite additions to the cast, Craig Robinson’s Ray and Grace Gummer’s FBI agent Dominique DiPierro. Ray starts his days with dialysis and a conversation with is dead wife. He also seems to be involved with some sort of bit coin/internet scam. We see him shaking down a computer guy who has failed to do some sort of internet thing. Whatever Ray is involved in seems to need Eliot’s expertise and Ray just may be the guy to exploit Elliot’s digital addiction for his means.
Insomniac Agent DiPierro is a fascinating addition. She can’t sleep, likes cybersex, speaks Farsi and talks to Amazon’s Alexa a lot. I can’t tell yet if she is smart and experienced and doesn’t care about impressing others, or if she is smart and experienced and trying to prove herself.
Last time we saw her she was interviewing Gideon about All Safe’s involvement in the digital attacks. She is drawn further into the fsociety world when Romero turns up dead at his mom’s house. Romero had a hacked list of FBI names and that prompts the local cops to call her. At Romero’s mom’s she find a flyer for the ‘End of the World’ party held at the fsociety’s arcade after the 5/9 attack. Which leads her to the arcade and closer to the old gang.
Speaking of the old gang, Darlene rounds up Mobley and Trenton to call fears of the Dark Army after Gideon’s and Romero’s murders. Trintion echoes my concerns with fsociety sans Elliot, calling Darlene out over the money burning prank. Angela defends it saying that it’s contributing to the negative public perception of E Corp. But, that already exists! People don’t have access to their money. They can only have $50 a day and ownership records are in chaos. The public confidence in the system is gone. Staging pointless viral theater just makes fsociety look like another group of privileged, out of touch, brats that are mad at their dads and have no interest in actually helping the people that are hurt by the system they’re trying to destroy.
Oh, also Angela went on what she thought was a date with the E Corp bigwig Phillip Price, but it started off as a business meeting with a couple other E Corp people. Then Price dismissed the guys and tells Angels that they were in the room (I’ll stop here so we can sing that bit from Hamilton) when the decision was made about the poisoning of Angela’s town. Price gives her some data to punish those guys, after telling her about their family lives. What game is price playing? Is he trying to break Angela, make her prove some E Corp loyalty or is he working for justice through Angela?
By the end Elliot is broken. Mr. Robot is ready to take over and Ray is in position to use Eliot for himself.