Mr. Robot Recap: eps2.0_unm4sk-pt1.tc

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Season: 2 / Episode: 1 / USA

Mr. Robot is back in the flesh. The multiple personality, sociopathic, drug-induced, revolutionary flesh! The season wastes no time and picks up right where we left our hero (anti-hero?) Elliot Alderson, in a state of pure confusion regarding what his actions were on Zero Day, the night of the anarchy hack and utter disbelief that he has been the one who orchestrated this entire clusterfuck and not his imaginary father.

“I wanted to save the world”

We open with quite a surprise. Elliot is back up in the Dr. Lipschitz office going over his new Groundhog Day routine. Wake up, eat breakfast with Leon at 8am so he doesn’t have to talk ’cause Leon loves to, especially about Seinfeld. Do some chores around the apartment for a few hours, eat lunch with Leon who talks so damn much he now looks kinda familiar. Check out a pickup game in Harlem – no rules street ball type shit while Leon goes off with the verbiage. Grab dinner with Leon HOOOOOOLLLLLDDDD the door (R.I.P.) that definitely is no ordinary young black man just added to the cast, thats JOEY ‘Hip Hop aint Dead’ Bada$$! USA, you never cease to amaze me with this show. So yeah, Elliot aint doin’ shit but remaining holed up with his mom, eating every meal with the new homie Leon, getting an occasional visit from Darlene and fending off his inner demons  the manifestation of deepest desires Mr. Robot, who is so frustrated with this mundane-ass Pleasantville regimen that he sends a bullet through Elliot’s brain, Rick Grimes style. Pretty insane opening.

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They bless us with a little peek at Zero Day. Elliot and Tyrell Wellick pull up to Arcade Fire Hacker Headquarters down by Coney Island. Tyrell is the perfect audience stand-in when he asks, “Why this mask? It’s a little silly isn’t it?” Elliot is at a computer entering some binary code apocalypse type shit when he finally says, “It’s happening.” Scene cuts before we get any concrete updates on what really went down, but it’s safe to say they initiated the hack, especially when Obama is all over the screen speaking that patriotic American propaganda bullshit. Props to him for showcasing that shitty side of American media. It’s all in the details with this fine (and rare) USA production.

Zero Day Aftermath

In the present, we’re introduced to some athletic/chic/techy woman who apparently is the modern day Wonder Woman of having her shit together. Excepttttttt she’s definitely under the illest cyber attack on her super posh smart home, and is standing there in her big ass winter coat looking like The Siberian Special Forces character in Goldeneye. Aint nothing going right so she calls up her tech guy? her man? her girl? the company who installed her apartment? And they are absolutely no help. She bounces and in walks Darlene rocking heart glasses like a hippy OG along with her hacker buddy with a prosthetic leg. They discuss the tracker on that woman’s phone and you know it’s about to go down!

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Elliot gets a visit from his former boss, Gideon. He reveals to Elliot that the FBI believes he is the one who orchestrated the attack on Zero Day or was an accomplice somehow. Elliot over here squirming in his chair as Mr. Robot peels and eats an apple in the most annoying fashion while yelling out all the homie’s inner thoughts and insecurities. It gets so bad, the bullet hole from earlier returns and starts to leak. Mr. Robot gets so deep in his head that Elliot, for a split second, thought he slit Gideon’s throat.

“How do I take off a mask, when it stops being a mask? When It’s as much a part of me as I am?”

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Darlene is back at that apartment hyperventilating on the floor while Elliot returns to his premiere episode roots and rips our generation’s reliance on social media, celebrities and such, like no show can. Turns out, society is having a grand ol’ time partying in that woman’s spot stuntin’ with the brass balls of the Wall St. bull that they cut off amidst all the anarchy following the cyber attack. Darlene was listening to a whole lot of Nothing Was the Same because she comes storming out of that room, A-town stomps on a fellow hacker’s post-happy phone and is like, fuck all that happy go lucky shit and gets her squad into formation. They divide and conquer attempt to finish off the corporate, pompous, 1% running the world.

Turns out the woman’s apartment that fsociety turned into a frat house belongs to Susan Jacobs, the general counsel at E Corp aka Madam Executioner. She kills all lawsuits thrown at Evil Corp, and in particular, lawsuits that involve death. Remember last season when we found out that Evil Corp was responsible for the deaths of Elliot and Darlene’s father? Oh yeah, Darlene remembers.

We cut to a beautifully shot scene where a woman is dealing with the struggles of banking in a post-hack world. E Corp can’t verify the woman’s payments over the last 20 years, and when she threatens to cancel her account they can’t even promise her that she would receive all of her money! You woke yet? Good, because Mr. Robot is not for the mindless. The bank teller gets on the phone with one of her bosses and lets them know there’s a big problem.

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5.9 million delivered to Battery Park City by 9PM tomorrow. No police or else. Oh, and one of your “officers” has to deliver the payment.

Young Nancy Grace, Ms. Jacobs is going over the demands with Philip Price, the CEO of E Corp and Scott Knowles, the Chief Technical Officer (CTO). Of course these white collar meatheads don’t want to budge. Knowles thinks his IT team can get things under control after 5 days of their banking system being down. Susan warns ’em about how risky that would be. Price is hesitant but is considering bargaining with these terrorists, as he calls them. Scott Knowles steps up and volunteers to face his company’s assailant(s).

PART 2

Scott Knowles out here looking like a stick is puncturing his esophagus it’s so far up his ass, as he walks into the park. He asks his undercover backup if they see anything. Why do people in tv shows and movies always do exactly what they’re told not to do? Fsociety knew they wasn’t gonna be about that solo dolo life so they sent in a delivery man. Knowles cautiously opens the book bag and pulls out a fsociety mask. He gets a ring and is told to do exactly what the mask says or E Corp’s system will be “bricked” whatever the hell that means. He puts on the mask, dumps out the money and lights those MILLIONS on fire in the middle of the park. The Phil Collins track bumping in the background, talking about being a “prisoner all my life” and to “take me home” was just too perfect.

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Phillip Price is sitting in a room in Washington DC with 3 individuals (Janet, Mary and Jack) who are eating some baller ass lunch and possess the ability to front E Corp 900 BILLION dollars, and this cat Price is over here groveling at their feet asking for more to rebuild their database until the real recovery program is complete. They aint hearing it though. They call for him to resign. Prez can’t go to Congress with a bailout so he’s got no options. Price flips the whole argument on its head by dropping a FDR story on them and telling them their only option is actually to con the American public.

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Hell of a transition to go from a trillion dollar white house meeting to a 50 Shades bedroom scene featuring red ribbon, a knife and Stephanie Corneliussen who plays Tyrell’s beautiful monster of a wife, Joanna Wellick. Pretty sure that wasn’t Tyrell up in that kinky scene thooooooo. And a few scenes later we find out just that. Homie is straight up arranged to give Joanna what she wants needs then go back to a life of obscurity until summoned. Mad reverse Monica Lowinsky flow.

New Kids on the Block

New Character alert!! We get an intro to one of this seasons new leading ladies, Dominique DiPierro. She is working for the FBI and seems to be a fun, but can get down to business REAL QUICK type of woman. She sits down with Gideon and we don’t get any more details as to what goes down in that interrogation room.

In a quick little scene of Elliot and Leon watching ball, we get a oreo brownie mashup in the form of Craig Robinson (Ray) and Joey Bada$$ (Leon) interacting to diffuse a potential NYC throwdown. Ray introduces himself to Elliot and spits a few bars about perception and truth, then almost gets into a convo about Elliot’s prowess in the hack game. Big E shuts that shit down real quick, but I have a feeling we’ll be seeing Darryl again soon.

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Angela the Confident

Angela Moss, Elliot’s best friend (whose mother also caught the E Corp leukemia fade) has gone full white collar scum and is the PR Manager for E Corp. Why would she turn around and become one of the most important figures in a company she hates and tried to destroy? They made her an offer black-listed her ass and forced her to resort to this fuckery. Hopefully, she pulls an inside job middle finger to the man. As she bides her time, she’s handling the interview negotiation aspect of this 5.9 million dollar burning fiasco. She dismisses her co-worker after hanging up on a rep for Bloomberg (thats a big deal in NYC) and daring homegirl to snitch to their boss. Snakes gon’ hiss, rats gon snitch. Co-worker pulls up with boss-lady, Angela stands up and tells those stank face jezebels reeking of white privilege that Bloomberg agreed to all her demands and to GET OUT MY FACE WITH THAT FUCK BOY SHIT YA’LL WAS BOUT TO SPIT.

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Angela meets up with her lawyer friend Antara Nayar at a bar and tells her that she has decided to stay with this corporate gig and all Antara has to say is, “They are barbarians in $10,000 suits.” She chugs some wine, then drops the ill bars basically telling her that she’s now sleeping in the lions den. The next scene portrays Angela carefully getting out of a bed containing a man. She turns on a self confidence video and we see just how bad things have gotten in that head of hers, despite her assured demeanor.

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Ray and Elliot reunite on the basketball bleachers. Elliot tells Ray his dog is cute and all, but he can go kick rocks. Ray is genuinely hurt and asks him if he really forgot what they discussed last night. BOOM. It hits Elliot like when Maino slapped Andrew Jenks. He runs home and flips through his journal to find out what the hell happened. He can’t account for his actions during those sleeping hours.

This is Why I am Different

The meaning of the episode title, is finally revealed. Rami Malek is a beast and this scene where he realizes the severity of his situation is masterful. He stands up to Mr. Robot and demands to know where Tyrell is or to keep on blowing a hole in his head. Could he be mastering his other self?

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Gideon finds himself sitting in a bar when up comes a man spittin’ straight facts about the economy and the history of fsociety. Brock introduces himself and says that he knows who Gideon is. They get a little deep and Brock asks when Gideon’s man left him… and just when it seems Gideon might have something good happening, Brock tells Gideon that he’ll be remembered as a hero tomorrow. He then proceeds to launch a bullet into Gideon’s neck IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BAR. BROAD PARTY NIGHT. NO PILLOW. NO BACKUP. BY HIMSELF. Night,  night. R.I.P. Gideon you were a good man, but just being a good man doesn’t cut it in this world.

We finish the episode with Elliot falling asleep during his church group and then waking up on the phone. Who is on the other line? The man he’s been looking for all this time. [quote_simple]Bonsouir, Elliot.[/quote_simple]

Mr. Robot Reboot:

  • When Joanna returned home to that beautiful present wrapped in red ribbon. She opens the box to find…another box? Then notices the phone taped to the bottom. That had to be Tyrell calling her at the end of the episode. Their relationship is SO DAMN PERPLEXING, I can’t get enough of it.
  • That scene of Elliot getting pushed out of the window keeps getting more and more real.
  • What you got against Phil Collins?
  • Darlene breathing extra heavy on the floor was reminiscent of Elliot in the series premiere when he was buggin’ in his apartment.
  • Elliot being unable to comprehend why people love sports is so good. I’ve never experienced a show that pointed out so many examples of joyful and ordinary things alike, that the “average” American takes for granted. Keep it up Sam Esmail and Mr. Robot. You’ve become the summer savior.

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  • Ja-Quan is a NYC teacher and artist holding a B.A. in Sociology and History from SUNY New Paltz. On his journey to become Hokage, the Lord of The Speed Force and Protector of the Recaps can be found North of The Wall, chopping it up on Twitter @OGquankinobi

  • Show Comments

  • Bryan L. Cook

    That whole Price scene going from grovelling to basically “I was being nice now get me my money” made me mad because I feel like that is how that goes down.People just bending over to companies because the companies have coned everyone to think they are needed that bad.

    This show is amazing.

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