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Mr. Robot | Season 2 Episode 10 Recap

Mr. Robot - Season 2

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Hello, friend! Welcome to the Mr. Robot podcast on Post Show Recaps. Every week, Josh Wigler (@roundhoward) and Antonio Mazzaro (@acmazzaro) discuss the latest episode of Mr. Robot, covering each and every hour of the USA Network drama’s second season.

This week Josh and Antonio ditch their plans to watch Back to the Future Part II in order to discuss the latest harrowing episode of Mr. Robot. Topics include Phillip Price’s true motivations for power, the continued shadiness from Mr. Robot, Elliot’s invitation to the audience, the Tyrell Wellick of it all, and much more. Oh, and that little incident at the restaurant. Let’s not forget about that.

Read Josh’s THR Interview With Episode Writer Kor Adana

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  • Nina Spång

    WOW, What an episode! Looking forward to the pod :)

    • TrentC

      Second this.

      Before listening I’m going to say that Cisco and Darlene were not at the table in the diner when the shooting occurred.

      • eBetheBerlin

        I hadn’t even considered that possibility! I thought I was looking closely & saw them..but I’m happy 2 be mistaken!! & Dom gets a couple shots off. & from the previews looks relatively unscathed. smh. laughable. if only IRL … u’d be dead & pieces of u would be scattered into the next zip code.

        • TrentC

          How about this…Dom walks in and says – Both of you, get on the floor or move to the back of the diner! I watched it on my PC so I couldn’t make out much detail in the long shot.

          This could be nit picking but usually the first responding officer on the scene will give the subsequent units a mini report like – Civilians down or injured, we need a bus (ambulance). She just walked away and said don’t shoot me to the police officers. Not a word on the status of the people in the diner. Maybe a clue that no one was hurt?

          Also, it was less than 30 seconds from the time Dom gave the address to when the armed bikers rolled up. For a show with such great attention to detail, I thought that ready-response was a little too convenient considering how large NYC is.

          Another insightful pod from Mobley’s parents, thanks guys. Josh’s email interaction with the writer was tres cool.

          • mark

            Dark army is following her… after the assassination attempt

      • Kyle Schipske

        Watched in HD live, Cisco is clearly shot in the head, Darlene took cover but obviously we’ll need to wait til next week to find out her condition.

        • TrentC

          Yikes….thanks for the update.

          • eBetheBerlin

            Hello All, I went back & rewatched. 3rd time is the charm. lol (with this show, 4sho). 1st time I was watching the motorcycle pull up. 2nd time I caught that Dom goes into the diner & stands at the end of table & is talking to them. she remains standing & they r seated when the guy sprays the front of the diner w bullets. I see both of them go down (like Kyle says, it could be Cisco falling from a fatal wound, Darlene taking cover.)
            Other really cool thing is the flashing walk/don’t walk count down. 18 seconds, I think. But yeah, she doesn’t say anything like civilians down.. we need a bus. Could be she hasn’t assessed the damage yet.
            Also, I read on a couple interviews that both Kor Adana & Esmail said “to expect major casualties.” what is cool abt this is that it’s gonna throw Elliot & Darlene into some pretty heavy dynamics, which I think will be exciting. I’m not happy by any means that Cisco is dead or that Angela looks 2b kidnapped and/or going away for a lotta years! BUT – it means that Darlene & Elliot are gonna have to really lean on, rely on ea other if they intend to finish what they started.

  • LaShawna

    I can’t figure out if DDP’s boss is just a complete, clueless moron or a tool of the Dark Army. Frankly, I could see it going either way.

    • eBetheBerlin

      Well, u have more faith in her than I do bc I think she full-on gave him up in some sort of a plea bargain w ppl she ‘believed’ were the fbi. but from the teaser for the finale it looks like she’s being taken somewhere not so legit. I nvr considered it could have been E Corp ppl. I believe she was wearing a wire for the fbi. The posters plastered all over the subway car with the word “PHASE” a giant ear behind Elliot & the word “listening” was all just too obvious. I think she was after a confession. 1st thing she says, ‘Elliot, why did you start fsociety?’ Elliot has to gather himself from the abruptness of the question.
      Anyway, to me that was the saddest, best scene so far in the whole show. So much emotions displayed. She cold-heartedly betrayed him & regretted it instantly. Her rationalization of why it would be okay & her only choice collided w their history and how deeply she cares from him. Too late now, Benedict Arnold. If this is all true, she will be the most hated character on this show forever.

      • TrentC

        Antonio brought up all of the audio references and I caught most of them watching the episode, along with the title. The white noise at Joanna’s place was the most interesting to me. Especially when you couple that with Tyrell’s breathy phone calls.

        The two Phase posters are what makes me think that Angela won’t betray him. They are what make it too obvious (in my mind). I think the two people at the end of the scene are either FBI or possibly Mobley and Trenton in disguise. The FBI could have got to her and she may have agreed to try and implicate Elliot, but I believe her loyalty to Elliot will cause her to fool the FBI in some way.

        It was strange scene. She tells Elliot she’s going to confess, and from that he would know her life is over. Likely a very long prison sentence. He gives her a hug and a kiss, then just leaves. You’d think he would attempt to save her or prevent her from doing that.

        • eBetheBerlin

          IKR? it was just heartbreaking. how many other times has he said, ‘I can fix this. don’t worry’? My mind is racing; searching back through all the captured images from past seasons trying to recall a similar predicament for comparison, but coming up empty. It all made no. fucking. sense. The whole scene was off. awkward. misplaced. and extremely uncomfortable. Notice too, there was no vo. Typically, Elliot would talk to us during those long pauses, like when he was grasping for what to say in response to Angela’s Q. Instead, “we” (the collective ‘us’ from the audience) experience the interaction with the same tensions from Angela’s vantage point. tres interesant. But – here’s my breakdown of that very strange scene. I apologize in advance for my lengthy comment. Also – i have not listened to the podcast but I did read Josh Wigler’s THR article. nice.
          #1) He sits across from her, not next to her. He walks in to this completely vacant car except for the 2 of them. the way it was shot emphasizes the oppressiveness, emptiness and *loneliness* of not only her sitting there by herself, feeling utterly helpless & abandoned, but of the interaction. The white & fluorescent lighting adds a blankness & starkness to the atmosphere.
          But, the 1st thing I noticed is, here is this completely EMPTY subway car & he sits across from her? not next to her. It sets up the tension. I mean, he’s rushing to the aid of a dear friend, responding to a “911” text msg, but chooses to sit far away – distancing himself? makes no. fucking. sense. If you’re rushing to help your friend don’t you sit beside them to console them? It’s almost half-heartened.
          #2) Then there’s the Glaring Giant Ear behind him during the whole conversation. the “Phase” posters are plastered all over the train with the words “listener” “listening” & something else I couldn’t make out (but will re-watch). It’s just too obvious a clue that someone is ‘listening.’
          #3) imo she did make a lame attempt to taint any prior admission of his guilt with the recount of the Queen’s Museum encounter establishing that he has mental issues & therefore painting a legal back door for him. She follows through on her end of the bargain by getting him to implicate himself, but then she quickly, slyly mentions, ‘hey, remember when you were yelling at the staff bc they couldn’t see the persons you were seeing?’ lol Aaaah, no, sorry, i don’t remember that thing 15 yrs ago. But – he also looses time, so if his alter ego had taken over, he wouldn’t have remembered (achem, 3 lost days)
          #4) can’t be mobley & trenton. in the eve’s-dropping convo from the malware Elliot planted on Xun’s phone the boss asks Xun, “did he ask about his friends?” I interpret that to mean they know the friends have disappeared, and perhaps why. I’m beginning to feel more certain that the DA killed Romero. besides, why would Mobley & Trenton go to meet Angela? wouldn’t they get a hold of Darlene?
          #5) The two mystery ppl enter from the exact same direction that Elliot had. hmmmm… aaah, no explanation there. unless they were in several cars down so as Elliot wouldn’t have noticed them when he got on the train.
          #6) She looks up at them with recognition. She definitely looked at them like, “okay. it’s done. you got what you wanted.”
          Re #1: the cinematography in this show is groundbreaking. Esmail is a huge fan of David Lynch (Twin Peaks, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive, Lost Highway. all those surreal films) & borrows a lot of the same style in homage. if you notice in this show 90% of the shots are framed with the characters in a corner, a small portion of the screen. In the subway shot – they are dead center. the first shot lets you know something is off. re-watch, you’ll see what i mean.

          For now, I’m convinced that Angela wasn’t on the up & up. I don’t think she’s gonna make it to her lawyers (@ 11pm at night?! what?) It was very late. i don’t recall the time stamp on the phone when the text msgs are shown but it was after 11pm 4sho. Unless you’re the POTUS, no effin lawyer is gonna meet w/you at midnight. well, mbe if you say it involves the fbi. but, i’m not buying it for here. lol
          Oh, so why do you think the Phase posters mean she wouldn’t betray him?

          • TrentC

            Because I thought it would have been too obvious of a physical plot device for the show. All of the audio references throughout the episode and then two huge ‘ear’ related posters right behind them while she records him? It’s so blatant lol!

            You bring up some good points, food for thought for sure. Thanks.

          • eBetheBerlin

            I’ve totally rethought this. I retract my proposition that Angela is ratting Elliot out. the rest I stand by, the observations of the scene. But, i think the 2 menacing ppl approaching her are either EvilCorp or FBI.
            Also, just wanna throw out there that something DOES NOT FEEL RIGHT abt the fbi chief. he’s conveniently up in his room in China when the entire team (bar DDP) get ambushed. Then, knowing that the Dark Army will hunt down & kill Cisco if a BOLO is put out on him, he issues it anyway. I think he could be colluding w the Dark Army?

          • spicywasabi

            The two mystery people are possible FBI agents. Dom mentioned that Angela was being tailed. And in previous episodes, there were 2 actors who were spotted in the background anytime Angela was out and about. Images of these 2 actors are on Reddit

        • John Davis

          Hi Trent. I posted a theory about why the FBI hasn’t talked to Elliot yet as Antonio and Josh discussed in their podcast. It was posted around 2 pm today and now it has been removed. Did you happen to read it? Would you like to discuss it with me?

          • TrentC

            I would love to discuss it John. I believe your post in question posted about eight posts below this one. I must warn you that I’m usually a few steps behind the rest of the internet when it comes to this show and it’s various reveals. I only listen to this podcast and I don’t read or listen to any other sources for Mr. Robot.

  • mark

    we should call him crisco lmfao A+

  • Trixie02

    Cisco Kid was a friend of mine. RIP.

  • Trixie02

    Antonio, the Chinese interest in the Congo is over tantalum which is used in electronics, audio and orthopedic implants.

    http://io9.gizmodo.com/5906833/tantalum-is-the-most-important-element-youve-never-heard-of

    It is a transition metal thus the transition metal music…most of the show dealt with audio–the Phase posters were a throwback to See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil and one of them appears to have a 2 on the ear. Phase 2.

    • eBetheBerlin

      Trixie02, u Roc!! thx 4 this highly interesting & Insightful contribution. great info! & knowing that makes it so much more pwrful. China (in this show) is totally maneuvering themselves. I said Waaaaay back when, beginning of S2, mbe end of S1, this is all abt the global economy. In the preview for eps 11 is the 1st time it’s overtly stated this is an act of war. WhiteRose has been pulling the strings all along. from the very start. They weren’t ‘helping’ Elliot. Ever. Elliot/fsociety were being manipulated. I believe this show has always been abt the viewer witnessing how the 1% move pawns around on the global chessboard in their personal play for power. Price says this exact thing in the opening to Terry Colby: “History is about drawing & re-drawing imaginary lines for power.”
      I found the introduction of chess into the story line was used to illustrate this point symbolically.
      WhiteRose’s objective from the beginninghas been to bring down and recreate the global economy in a
      redistribution of wealth, and the Power that comes with money. By converting all financial systems to a standardized currency, it levels the playing field. no one country has the advantage in trade with the dollar being more powerful than the Yen, for example.
      In all mysteries, investigations, tales there are two and only two eternal themes: love & money. Either it’s for love, for money or for the love of money. in this case, it’s “follow the money.” Different motivations, different morals, one self-serving, (White Rose) one a bit more altruistic (fsociety). But it’s all abt the $$

      Mr. Robot will one day be studied in college film & literature courses for its classic Shakespearean, Hemingway qualities and brillant, timeless prose.

      • Trixie02

        It’s definitely global maneuvering. The chess analogy is interesting. I was trying to focus on a sculptural piece on Price’s shelves which looked like a pawn, but I could not get good resolution. Price sees himself as the most powerful man in the room, yet that may not be how his opponents see him.

        Price’s God analogy was interesting when juxtaposed with Tyrell’s speech about the “night they were gods.” Someone on Reddit suggested that this is about mind control (Joanna seems to manipulate Tyrell into doing things for her like Lady MacBeth/Danish connection) while others have suggested cyborg technology. Given the mention of Congo (tantalum) and “creating man is his (Price’s) image,” it could be headed toward some biotech experiment gone awry resulting in leukemia.Whatever it is, it should result in an interesting 3rd season.I love the writing!

        • eBetheBerlin

          you wouldn’t happen 2 knw the name of the metal song they played? or the band? btw, your comment above,
          “It is a transition metal, thus the transition metal music.” is just so astute & meaningful.

          • Trixie02

            Bleach 03 – The Head That Controls Both Right And Left Sides Eats Meats And Slobbers Even Today

          • eBetheBerlin

            thanks! btw, i was soo annoyed by the Reddit user who posted after the leaked eps that Elliot was in prison. and then proceeded on with his effin thesis as to why this was so. Ah, lemme just say this: it was leaked. someone on the set, production, costumes… somewhere musta leaked that bc you can’t tell me that of the xxx 1,000s (mbe close to 1million) viewers there was this one lone Einstein IQ dude who laid it out down to the pencil he was writing with. I mean, it was so frickin detailed (notice how hard i’m trying to refrain from letting the f-word rip. that’s how perturbed i was), bullet-pointed, etc that there is no way in hell this guy figured all that out in 45 mins. I donno about you, but i was still taking in how USA had leaked it through the various social media sites and how clever that was to use tech in that way promoting this tech show. I hadn’t even begun to analyze. And 99% of comments were abt ‘omg, did you see that leaked eps?!!’ or, ‘i can’t wait to see part II.’

            I felt totally cheated that within 24 hrs of it airing some fool know-it-all is on Reddit blasting his fuckin theories on Elliot’s in prison. bottom line: i find it very difficult to believe that he wasn’t tipped off. Who really knows if it was Esmail or someone in the writers room who wanted that out there so the audience would interpret things differently?
            Personally, i liked the reveal, and the ‘ah-ha’ moment, but i felt it was ruined. But – not a peep about Leon. that’s why i think it was leaked. If you’re that clever to figure out the prison thing, why wouldn’t you also question this guy who takes it upon himself to be Elliot’s bodyguard? I know i was more suspicious about that then if E was in a mental ward or prison! lol And once it was revealed, still so many ppl got so much of the puzzle wrong. Once you knew he was in prison, not figuring out who Ray was… or the dog…. come on. (eye roll here). js. so… I know Esmail was thinking, ‘who on the set fuckin leaked this shit?!’ In an interview he so much as said that, that it didn’t add up. He wanted ppl to eventually get the sense something was off but it was quite implausible it would’ve been after Part I of the series. I’ve always disliked cheaters. lol

          • Trixie02

            I only learned of the theory here and then started reading over there. People start new threads constantly so it is impossible to keep up. I hear you, though. Idonot get why anyone would post spoilers…same for Survivor.

          • TrentC

            Couldn’t agree more.That’s why for Mr. Robot I watch the episode, make a comment or two here and then listen to Josh and Antonio’s podcast. Some shows deserve a natural reveal. If someone told me about the prison angle earlier this season, ‘prediction’ or not that would have ruined a large part of the season for me.

            I am admittedly slow while watching this show. It makes the eventual reveals so much better and that’s just fine with me. Being right isn’t as important to me as being entertained.

          • eBetheBerlin

            TrentC, I really appreciate that view point & approach. I must say that in this discussion (here) everyone seems very thoughtful, respectful & intelligent. I couldn’t agree more. I basically watch the show, read a few tech reviews, mbe watch The Verge aftershow, read stuff Kor Adana posts, but I don’t like or want the ‘competition’ of beating someone to the punch line/finish line of the Mr. Robot theories. I read stuff to help discover Easter Eggs, like the one Kor Adana revealed in Josh Wigler’s article. That was cool.
            Also, I highly recommend an after show tech review on GeekWire called “Mr. Robot Rewind.” by Corey N. (I can’t remember his last name. if u go 2 GeekWire & search Mr Robot Rewind it’ll come up.) I especially like his reviews bc he breaks down all the how’s & why’s of the hacks in a very non-tech friendly way. It helps to feel like I know wth is going on!! Anyway, check it out.

          • TrentC

            When I watch Survivor, I read and listen to every bit of information on the net. Blogs, podcasts, Twitter posts…the works. It’s like an addiction.

            For shows like Mr. Robot I like hearing other opinions and theories, and have found that Josh and Antonio provide a lot of angles/info here, along with the other commenters in the thread. Some people know tons of stuff…others like me are more casual watchers.

            I read Reddit for Survivor but stopped reading it for scripted shows after the latest question on who was killed for the cliffhanger of The Walking Dead. Episode was analyzed frame by frame with screenshots, complete with the person’s name who was killed.

            All that being said, Mr. Robot is a show that screams for frame by frame analysis lol! Esmail knows his viewers and what he’s going to put on the screen. It’s like a game…how much can he show to us as hints without blowing the total reveals. I’m probably going to go back when the series is done and then do all of the background reading as I rewatch.

            And yes for the most part all of the posters here at this site are cool. So what if I like pizza and you don’t…no need to get nasty about opinions on taste… :)

            *thanks for the recommendations

          • eBetheBerlin

            Read a Rolling Stone review that talked abt “Bleach 03.” found it interesting that they are a Japanese all-girl band. Esmail can’t be outdone. That is Certain. this show just is more amazing with ea episode.

        • eBetheBerlin

          I’m gonna have to get on Reddit! Resistance is futile! haha… plus, I like the discussions, bouncing ideas around. and so much insight. diff ppl r able 2 see diff things.

          • Trixie02

            I like to read theories there, but a lot of comments mock the different theories. After so many episodes with no reveal, the prison theory was mocked by those who supported his being in an institution as well as those who thought it was in his head.

  • susan appleby

    Just FYI: Lost had an ARG as well with a book tie in. I got a bar of chocolate from a party in Central Park.

    • Josh Wigler

      Yeah, my point was that the Lost ARG never actually impacted the story of the show, despite heavy hopes otherwise. (AKA, no real Hanso impact on the show.) So I’m conditioned not to get too invested in that stuff.

  • Brian Ruhl

    did i miss something? or did i hear wrong on the podcast? was it stated on the pod (i dont remember who said it) that darlene remembered seeing madam executioner on tv smiling when she was 4 (which means her dad had died, right?) but then said she was kidnapped when she was 5 at the park when elliot and their dad went on the ride?

    • eBetheBerlin

      It was in the court room when Ecorp won their case us where she sees her laughing & smiling. Darlene says, “I was 4, sitting in the back. No one else saw it, but I saw it. you were laughing & smiling.”

    • Trixie02

      I thought the case took place before he died, but I’d have to check.

    • Josh Wigler

      Yep, she said she was four when she was telling the story about Susan Jacobs, and five for the kidnapping story. Susan first, kidnapping second, back-to-back years. I assume Edward died sometime after the initial lawsuit.

  • John Davis

    I think that the reason that the FBI hasn’t approached, mentioned or talked to Elliot yet is that Mr. Robot is an undercover NSA government hacker involved in a cyber war with China and the Dark Army. Mr. Robot knows that Wellick is alive, possibly already in FBI custody, but he lies to Elliot about killing him so that he will stop looking for him.

    Mr. Robot enables and encourages Elliot’s youthful idealism in bringing down E Corp as a device to help him identify the leadership of a greater evil; the cyber-warfare arm of the single party dictatorship of the government of China: The Dark Army.

    Remember, Mr. Robot’s original plan to destroy ECorp data was to create a giant gas explosion. But Elliot refused to take part because of the possibility of collateral damage. This refusal to participate convinced Mr. Robot to conceal from Elliot the fact that his ECorp hack was really part of a bigger hack against a greater evil. Elliot is now becoming aware of the unintended consequences of his hack and that collateral damage can take on a different form than corpses on the ground.

    In this scenario, Mr. Robot must get back to Elliot’s apartment to gather and destroy evidence of this fact. Eliot’s f’society hack results in the almost complete destruction of the world economy, but to Mr. Robot it is acceptable collateral damage in a greater effort against a greater evil.

    • TrentC

      Great theory John. The idea that one aspect of Elliot’s personality is working with the authorities for a different agenda and political goal, while Elliot ‘prime’ sees himself as a rogue entity, is brilliant.

      Part of me still thinks that Elliot is working with the Dark Army for possibly another goal that hasn’t been revealed yet. His missing three days becomes so important when theorizing his long term motives.

      As you mentioned above your theory brings up some interesting questions such as – How close are China and the Dark Army in terms of parallel interests? Do Price and White Rose have a common goal or is everything smoke and mirrors from both sides?

      I’m usually ahead of most plots for scripted TV, but will happily admit this show has constantly kept me guessing. It’s like the perfect onion, with each layer leading to exciting and interesting layers beneath.

      • John Davis

        Thanks for your thoughts. I thought my post had been “hacked” and removed. This show is literally driving me crazy paranoid.
        It would be interesting to see if the “Mr. Robot” side of Elliot is secretly working as an undercover agent for the government and the ideal side of Elliot cannot reconcile with the mercenary side. At least there are no UFO’s in this show. That we know of!!!!

        • TrentC

          Nice callback lol!…where’s Antonio? If aliens enter the world of Mr. Robot I’m sure Mr. Mazzaro would abduct himself right out of the podcast.

  • Bryant Hughes

    if Joanna has no greater knowledge of Elliot, why is she waiting outside his house?
    She knows he just got released.

  • Bryant Hughes

    i’m pretty sure the opening scene was a flashback, which you guys didnt mention.