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Mr. Robot “eps2.4_m4ster-s1ave.aes” Review (2×06)

10 Aug

Screen Shot 2016-08-10 at 9.30.48 PM

“I’m never going to leave you.”

First of all, I have to commend USA for letting Sam Esmail do whatever the hell he wants. Devoting the first ~20 minutes of a television episode to a sitcom version of a dark psychological drama is already outlandish enough, but add onto that the ’90s commercials and you have a wonderfully trippy experience. It’s a strange, enjoyable, and unsettling opening sequence, and it’s an example of just how fun this show can get. Sure, some might argue that it overstays its welcome a bit, but it’s so ridiculous that I’m willing to go with it for however long it might take.

There’s also the fact that it actually means something. It’s not “let’s do a sitcom just for the hell of it!”; it’s “let’s do a sitcom for the hell of it, but let’s also make it thematically relevant!”. It ties in beautifully with the final flashback scene in the car, one of several scenes in this episode that express the care Edward had for his son. We obviously shouldn’t be pretending like Edward is the world’s best father–in fact, we’ve seen that he was pretty shitty–but we also can’t overlook the nuances of their complicated relationship. It gets even more interesting when we consider the promise Elliot receives in the car: “I’m never going to leave you.” Well, guess what? Exhibit one, Mr. Robot.

This entire show is built on lies and illusions. “Sometimes lies can be useful, Elliot,” Mr. Robot tells him during a motivational sitcom speech at the beginning. “The truth is painful, son.” Perhaps that’s why so much time is spent “[peeking] into the future”; if you spend too much time dwelling on the past, you start to uncover your deep-seated fears and secrets, your buried truths. Mr. Robot shows us what happens when you retreat into your mind, and it navigates the relationship between the world around us and the worlds inside our heads.

Additionally, it navigates the relationships we have with others. “Masters,” Elliot’s voiceover states. “We all have them. Every relationship is a power struggle…sometimes the best course of action is to ride shotgun.” The interesting thing about Elliot is that he is oftentimes his own ‘master’, and this power struggle is something we’ve seen play out over the last 16 episodes. It’s a fascinating thing to consider, which explains why this is one of the most compelling shows on television.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-The other major sequence of this episode involves Angela breaking out the hacking skills. It’s a tight, suspenseful, and very well directed piece of television that anchors the middle section of the episode. I’m looking forward to seeing how that pans out.

– “Cocksucker” but no “fuck”. Whatever, USA.

-If you haven’t seen “Too Many Cooks”, go ahead and do that now.

Photo credit: Mr. Robot, USA Network

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4 Responses to “Mr. Robot “eps2.4_m4ster-s1ave.aes” Review (2×06)”

  1. JustMeMike August 11, 2016 at 12:10 pm #

    I don’t exactly agree that the opening sit-com segment was wonderful and trippy. I was thinking more along the lines of silly and loopy.

    But as you said – Sam Esmail is imaginative and kudos to USA Network for giving him carte blanche to do whatever he wants. As for tying in to the I’m Never Going to Leave You theme – sure it does. But is that necessarily good for Elliot. It might be just another reminder that Elliot’s Dad is his cross to bear, or said another way his ball and chain.

    I’ve been unable to write any additional posts about Mr. Robot on my own blog for the simple reason that I don’t really know what is going on. As an example Angela doing the hack physical leg-work and equipment placement was indeed suspenseful and well done – but I’m in the dark about what Darlene et al are aiming for with this.

    So thanks for your commentaries and discussion about the segments.

    I did like that long shot of Michael Cristofer who plays Philip Price in that office. It took me awhile to figure out that we were looking along the length of the room with a big conference table’s surface taking up half the space. Initially, I thought it was some sort of a puzzle as in Where is the bottom of the picture. Why don’t we see the legs?

    • polarbears16 August 11, 2016 at 12:46 pm #

      “But is that necessarily good for Elliot. It might be just another reminder that Elliot’s Dad is his cross to bear, or said another way his ball and chain.”

      Excellent point. And I definitely understand your thoughts on the opening sequence.

      My understanding about the hack is that by hacking the FBI, fsociety can destroy certain records linking Angela to the AllSafe cd.

  2. louisoc August 13, 2016 at 2:38 pm #

    Yo! I trust your opinion, and am getting back into TV – is this show worth watching?

    • polarbears16 August 14, 2016 at 10:52 am #

      Absolutely! I don’t hold as high of an opinion of it as some do, but I think it’s a great show. What other shows are you looking at?

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