Mr. Robot Season 2 Premiere – Use Your Illusion

Saving the world didn’t go quite as planned for those left of fsociety, Angela has possibly drunk the E Corp Kool-Aid and Elliot keeps himself in a loop.

Spoilers for “eps.2.0_unm4sk.tc”

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It has been a long time since Elliot has talked to us and we have eagerly been waiting to see the revolution in action. But Elliot has been hiding from the fallout, keeping himself in an “analog loop” for the last month to wear down Mr. Robot. He has moved in with his mother who wakes him at the same time every day and tells him when to go to bed, “she is the most regimented person I know.” He eats all three meals in a neighborhood cafe with Leon (Joey Bada$$), a recent Seinfeld discoverer who is obsessed with finding the meaning in a show that has proudly proclaimed to have no meaning. He watches a group of men play basketball in the park, does his daily chores, goes to a church group meeting before settling to his room for the night to journal until bed time.

Mr. Robot is not happy with this seemingly endless loop. He does whatever he can to stay in Elliot’s head. Talking to him, threatening to hurt the people around Elliot to see if it would be him or Elliot at the wheel, shooting Elliot in the head again and again. Anything to make him lose control again and allow Mr. Robot to come out and play once more. The revolution needs them.

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Image Courtesy of USA Network

The loop is disrupted by the arrival of Ray (Craig Robinson) to one of the basketball games. Ray has heard thru the grapevine Elliot is good with computers and Ray is looking for some help. Elliot turns the man down quickly, but Mr. Robot sees an in. The next day, Ray comes back to Elliot at the basketball court in a much friendlier mood. Elliot tries to blow the man off, but Ray is confused. “I thought we were on the same page?… When we spoke last night.” Ray asks.

Mr. Robot has started to take over when Elliot sleeps again. “What do they say when they see you coming?” Mr. Robot taunts. “They see me.” Elliot knows Mr. Robot has him this time, but he is not giving up without a fight. He tells his alter ego he will continue in this loop until he gets what he needs. He wants to know what happened that night the hack went down. Where is Tyrell? “Give me what I want or keep shooting me.” That night at his church study group, Elliot falls asleep and wakes up at home with a phone to his ear. He has made a call (to a European number guessing by the ring) and Tyrell answers.

Joanna has found herself a new playmate for her S&M games, but he is not as good as her missing husband. After an unsatisfying round of punishment, Joanna comes home to find a gift waiting on her door step. Inside is a music box with a cell phone taped to the bottom. Unfortunately for her, an unknown number calls the burner as she is busy with her newborn son.

Angela has become a ball buster at her new PR position at E Corp. She negotiates with the news outlets like a pro, but her methods are not winning her over with her coworkers. She has found value in herself at E Corp, or that is what she tells Antara Nayar when they meet for drinks. Angela’s position at E Corp was to be temporary to gain contacts and info for the pending lawsuit in the corporations mishandling of toxic waste. The once timid computer programmer has come into herself at E Corp. Nayar is disappointed, but not completely surprised to see this coming. For all of Angela’s bolstering of her newly found confidence, it is all a façade as she needs the affirmations from a self-help program to keep her going.

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Darlene has taken the reigns of fsociety with Mobley (everyone else has fled) and several new faces. But the revolution has not been what they have hoped it would be. E Corp is still up and running. They have been bruised by the massive hack, but it is the everyday citizen who has suffered the most. E Corp has not allowed people to close out their bank accounts while they cannot verify how much a person has. They are forcing people to continue to pay their debts to them (even if the debt has long since been paid), but have no accountability to the payments coming in. Darlene knows that if fsociety doesn’t continue to teardown the banking conglomerate, they will eventually build themselves back up on the backs of everyone else and come after those who tried to destroy them. The hacktivists take the smart home of the in-house E Corp lawyer, Susan Jacobs (Sandrine Holt), hostage and make it the new headquarters.

First step to continuing the fight, hold all of the computers ransom for 24 hours. If a chief executive at E Corp doesn’t bring $5.9 million in cash to a public park, then fsociety will shut all the banking systems down. CTO Scott Knowles steps up and brings the cash. He is met with a bike messenger who gives Knowles a bag with a fsociety mask and a note telling him to burn all of the cash or else lose the systems. As many people (including Darlene) watch and film the burning of the cash, I have to wonder what exactly was the message being sent out? Money is worthless? E Corp has so much money they willingly burn it?

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Image Courtesy of USA Network

The blame for the massive hack publicly has fallen upon All Safe and Gideon. The former owner of the security firm has been working with the FBI, but he is paranoid he might be their main suspect. He goes to Elliot for help, hoping his former employee will get the bureau off his back. Elliot refuses even after Gideon makes his threats to go to the FBI with his suspicions about Elliot’s role in the hack. Gideon goes to talk to Dominique DiPierro (Grace Fummer), the lead FBI investigator for the hack. What he tells her, we will never find out from Gideon himself as an angry victim of the fallout shoots him in the neck at a bar that night.

Thoughts, Questions, and Easter Eggs

WHERE IN THE HELL IS FLIPPER?!?! Angela has custody of Cordie, but when Elliot is asked about owning a dog, all he says is that he used to have one and that he doesn’t have it now. Seriously, where is that adorable dog now?

Why does Krista agree to meet with Elliot again? I think she knows he had to do with the E Corp hack, so why is she protecting him?

“Control is an illusion” seemed to be a huge theme from last season. My guess is taking that control back is the theme for this one.

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Image Courtesy of USA Network

When Darlene is crying in the smart home, is she cry because the revolution was not what she hoped, or because she is missing her brother?

I like Leon’s quest to find meaning in Seinfeld because it sounds like a wonderfully pointless thing a person would do when the world is seemingly collapsing around them. I happen to hate that show; not because it is about nothing (that part is actually genius), but because everyone is such an unlikeable person.

One thing I found really fascinating is the show seems to go out of its way to show that people are still just living their lives in the middle of this crisis. Yes, this major bank has collapsed and it is creating this global economic meltdown, but people still have to carry on somehow. People still go to bars to drink and hook up. They go to the park to socialize and engage with others. They still post selfies and videos of the world around them to social media.

There are many theories about Tyrell and Leon as other facets of Elliot’s personality, but I don’t think they are. Gideon has acknowledged both Tyrell and Elliot as two separate people so I think that debunks that theory. Leon is probably real because I don’t think the producers are going to introduce another personality for Elliot while he is going head to head for control with Mr. Robot. It would be a little too much going on inside one person’s head for a TV show.

Image Courtesy of USA Network

Image Courtesy of USA Network

What did you think of the season two premiere of Mr. Robot? How do you think fsociety is going to continue their attacks on E Corp? Where is Tyrell? What does Ray need Elliot’s help with? How will Darlene, Mobley, Angela, and Elliot handle the death of Gideon? Talk to me in the comments section below.

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About Nerdling

The Nerdling has an unhealthy obsession with books, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Star Wars. She finds hockey to be the best sport in the world (Go Dallas Stars!) and is working on her first novel, but mostly glowers at a blank screen. You can find her on Twitter @nerdlingstale on Facebook @NerdlingTales or Instagram @nerdling_tales

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