This week on USA Network's "Mr. Robot," we got another flashback into Elliot’s troubled life. This time, it was Halloween a few years ago before fsociety was started. Darlene came to visit him, and their time together was like a fairly normal sibling meetup.
Elliot and Darlene watches "The Careful Massacre of the Bourgeoisie" as Darlene lulls on about the state of society. As they smoke a bowl, Elliot opens up to Darlene about losing his job. On Memorial Day, after accidentally being locked in the server room, he fell asleep only to wake up to all the servers being destroyed and no recollection of doing so.
He was ordered to see a shrink for anger management after this event, but we all know it’s so much more than anger he’s dealing with. One thing is quite recognizable in this scene: There’s a total absence of Mr. Robot and Elliot’s conscience. For the first time, we’re able to see the true beginning of Elliot’s psychotic break.
But wait, there’s more! Following their honest conversation, Elliot proceeds to show Darlene their father’s old jacket. Darlene makes him put on the jacket, along with a mask from the film they were just watching and voila – Mr. Robot is born.
Elliot begins to eerily scheme about taking down Evil Corp as a "Trojan horse," a fascinating scene as we're able to see the wheels turning in his head as he decides on committing the ultimate crime. Darlene asked, "You there?" But at this point, we don’t know if the plan was solely Elliot’s doing or that of Mr. Robot. It’s interesting to see the multiple masks that Elliot now wears – and has worn in the past. Before Mr. Robot came to life, Elliot might have been awkward, but he was still somewhat "normal." Who am I to say that, though? Because at the end of the day, what’s normal anyway?
In current time, Darlene makes a visit to Elliot at his mom’s house, trying to convince him to come back to his position at fsociety. She said that the Elliot that’s sitting in front of her isn’t helpful whatsoever, and she needs the Elliot he once was. She’s leaving out details from Elliot, and he knows it. "She wants my help, but she's not being honest about why; this is what she does — this is her default," said Elliot’s conscience. Notice how Elliot relates everything to computers and coding; this is his default. Maybe we’re all reduced to ones, zeroes and defaults, truly making control an illusion which we all create to deny our nature.
Meanwhile, Joanna Wellick is obviously struggling without Tyrell. She can’t afford to pay off someone to lie about Tyrell’s whereabouts, and she has no access to Tyrell’s severance package. She attempted to approach Scott Knowles about getting her husband’s money, even going so far as to offer a confession of Tyrell murdering Scott’s wife; however, Scott has a chip on his shoulder and refuses to help.
Elliot visits his new friend Ray for a some quality time. Ray knows that Elliot is insane and gives him a chess set to battle his demons. Ray knows that Elliot is carrying some kind of burden, and a great way to figure it out is by playing himself in chess. In that moment, Elliot considers telling Ray everything, but Mr. Robot begs for him not to indulge.
Instead, Mr. Robot offers to partake in a chess match to determine whose existence will completely take over, a challenge Elliot accepts. This gives Elliot a chance to remove the voids of time that he experiences with Mr. Robot being around, including what happened to Tyrell Wellick. Being able to recall all your actions sounds quite nice, doesn’t it?
Even Leon thinks the chess game is a good idea, even bringing up how people in the Age of Enlightenment used chess as a means of self-improvement. He also tells Elliot to think about his dreams, and if his dreams are great, then that’s the life he’s meant to live. "Existence can be beautiful or ugly, but that’s on you," he says.
In their therapy session, Elliot tells Krista about his plan to play in the game of all games with Mr. Robot to have a definite winner, but she discourages him from doing so. She thinks that taking part in such a game is highly dangerous and would destroy a part of himself that makes him ... him. I agree with her, but of course, our good friend Elliot disagrees completely. He believes that annihilation of parts of ourselves, and other people, is all humans are.
There could be some truth to what he’s saying – hear me out! We all have a tendency to permanently put pieces of ourselves to bed for the sake of what we perceive as happiness or complacency. Isn’t it quite dangerous to do so? For when we deny a part of ourselves, we fail to be all we can be. Whether that is a good or bad thing, I’m not sure. All I know is this show always has me seriously thinking about aspects of life, and how I choose to live it, after every episode. Now THAT is what I call good television.
Elliot sits in a park with Mr. Robot to settle the score once and for all. Unfortunately, they kept on reaching a stalemate. Elliot apparently can’t exist without both parts of himself, so he’s going to have to merge both existences.
At E Corp, Phillip Price is having a conversation with Whiterose, the cross-dressing businessman and leader of the Dark Army. Their conversation immediately lets us know that Price probably knows more about the Five/Nine attack than he lets on. Whiterose ends his conversation with Price as a simple American man and immediately goes into his life as a powerful, Chinese woman. Even the most powerful people wear masks to disguise who they fully are. This is the life we’ve all chosen to live, one of code-switching and multiple identities to survive in our cruel world.
Outside of E Corp, Angela watches as the two men she ate dinner with last episode were hauled out by the FBI. She figures that Price needs leverage over her because he needs her to do something for him. She admits her thoughts to Price, to which he tells her she’s wrong. "It’s always good to have dreams," said Price. He has a dream of his own; however, we aren’t privy to that info as yet.
After failing to find a winner to his chess match, Elliot makes another visit to Ray. He agrees to help Ray with his business, a feat that is sure to bite him in the butt later on. As Ray leaves, Elliot finds out that Romero is dead, that the FBI has found the arcade and that they’re now surveilling fsociety. His answer to all of this: hack the freaking FBI. I don’t know if Elliot wants to get caught, or he really has a trick up his sleeve. Either way, I’m really antsy to see how this plays out next week.
Zoe Benjamin, currently a senior at UW-Milwaukee, was raised in the South suburbs of Chicago. She is a foodie, an avid traveler and music junkie, with just the right amount of nerdiness to top it all off.
Growing up in a large Jamaican family exposed her to a lifestyle full of food, laughter and pride. Zoe’s appreciation for her family’s eclectic nature led her to celebrate the differences in others. She just so happens to especially enjoy the study of food, seeing that eating is her favorite pastime.
Ever since she was able to get on a plane by herself, Zoe has taken the liberty of traveling to every place within her reach -- whether that be the next state over, or across the seas. Her wanderlust has taken her to 10 different countries, with France being her favorite. Nothing excites her more than French food and wine. Zoe hopes to absorb and share as much culture as she can so that the world may become that much more accepting of all the bountiful diversity in the world.