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I just read a really cool review that touches on some of the back and forth we've had here. It also goes deep on some of my favorite parts of the show (title card, influences etc etc).

He spends a solid portion of the review on the Fight Club twist. I think he makes some really great points during that section.  I'll link to it when I get off mobile.

Edit:  Here it is.  https://lareviewofbooks.org/essay/mr-robot-season-1

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Ok, so the one thing I keep coming back to:

 

The scene with Tyrell and Mr. Robot in the car. Tyrell says he knows his secret, but then when he confronts Elliot at his apartment, he's all, "I know it was you" like it was the first revelation. But from Tyrell's point of view, didn't they already have that conversation?

 

It bugs me, because I don't think Tyrell's just another aspect of Elliot's identity. If he is, then the whole thing's pretty much a giant delusion.

 

Regardless of that though, it's definitely got me on the hook for season two.

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Ok, so the one thing I keep coming back to:

 

The scene with Tyrell and Mr. Robot in the car. Tyrell says he knows his secret, but then when he confronts Elliot at his apartment, he's all, "I know it was you" like it was the first revelation. But from Tyrell's point of view, didn't they already have that conversation?

 

It bugs me, because I don't think Tyrell's just another aspect of Elliot's identity. If he is, then the whole thing's pretty much a giant delusion.

 

Regardless of that though, it's definitely got me on the hook for season two.

 

Tyrell talked to Elliott then the writers forgot?  Or maybe the whole show is in Elliott's head?  Maybe it's purgatory.

 

Nonsensical dialog, twists upon twists, mysteries~!  Is Mr. Robot going to be this generation's Lost?  I don't mean that in a good way.

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Ok, so the one thing I keep coming back to:

 

The scene with Tyrell and Mr. Robot in the car. Tyrell says he knows his secret, but then when he confronts Elliot at his apartment, he's all, "I know it was you" like it was the first revelation. But from Tyrell's point of view, didn't they already have that conversation?

 

It bugs me, because I don't think Tyrell's just another aspect of Elliot's identity. If he is, then the whole thing's pretty much a giant delusion.

 

Regardless of that though, it's definitely got me on the hook for season two.

 

My guess is that Mr. Robot and Tyrell had worked out some deal to get Colby fired (which would explain the "I look forward to working with you" *wink wink* bit from the pilot), but Tyrell didn't truly understand the scope of Elliot's power/plan til after the scene we see in the car.  

 

At this point he goes from thinking "I'm using this guy to elevate myself" to "this guys is the leader of fsociety!"  Which brings about that super awesome scene where he is having a breakdown in front of his wife and talking about meeting God.

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Here is a list of things I traditionally hate in movies/TV/etc:

1) An excessive amount of voice-over
2) A score comprised of "edgy" music
3) A pained protagonist hellbent on taking down some sort of evil corporation/person in power.

Mr. Robot has all of these. Yet I am two episodes in and absolutely love this show. It's so well-executed. Those things above are usually used as crutches from people who don't know what they're doing -- telling instead of showing; not using music as a way to add to the story but instead to try and show off; lazy writing and character creation with an ideologue we're supposed to identify with despite him essentially being an 8th grader who just discovered Nine Inch Nails.

But this show actually uses what are traditionally crutches and makes the story great. The v-o is used because the main character can't express emotions in a normal way. The music sets the tone for the drama of the scene. And the main character has a lot of pain that explains his worldview and is being played by so many people at once.

Such a great show. I love it.

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I plowed through the series in 2 days. Wow.

Like I said earlier: This show has so many things to it that, on paper, should make me detest it. I am really not a fan of things where the homages and influences are so blatant (or just straight up taken) but I don't care. The show is great.

I think f society's message is pretty dumb and immature. But that doesn't change how well delivered the message is in a lot of the scenes. I don't think it's trying to tell us the world needs to burn. It's showing us the worldview that motivates these people. They also hinted at the pros and cons of this new world order. Yes, we are free of debt and the people who control that debt have been taken down a few pegs. But this still ruins savings and retirements and ruins small businesses run by good people (and that of the one truly good character). I hope that becomes a point in part 2.

But I am so stoked for the second season. The first season was all about the paranoia of what essentially boiled to a heist movie. The second season looks like it is a financial Mad Max. And I love how the idealistic Angela has already been corrupted by the desire to own new shoes to put a tally salesman in his place.

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Also on the politc note. While that view of EVIL CORPORATIONS is trite, we are living in a world where Bernie Sanders is a pretty legitimate political candidate based on that message. And Donald Trump is leading the Republicans with his form of Truth To Power. It's a weird time and Mr. Robot really reflects a lot of the current populist sentiment.

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Apologies for bumping the thread but I finally got around to finishing this over the weekend. Thought it was great until episode 8 but then after the reveal things started to go a bit downhill. Found eps 9&10 to be too much of a leap in terms of Elliot's "illness".

Really want season 2 to be about Tyrell (if he even exists) coming back and going all scorched earth on Evilcorp. I don't think it was him knocking at the end of the finale though,he would've just barged his way in.

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I think f society's message is pretty dumb and immature. But that doesn't change how well delivered the message is in a lot of the scenes.

 

Well, once you kinda figure out that f-society's message is perverted by Eliot's personal vendetta against Evilcorp, it becomes rather pretentious.  Whiterose is my favorite character in the series because at least he / she has the decency not to mask his true nature with claptrap.  He is the only character that isn't lying to himself about what motives govern his actions.

 

Eliot and Darlene hide behind avenging their father (the redistribution of wealth angle is only there to rope in the other members of f society), Angela hides behind personal morality, and Tyrell hides behind his family's security.  Whiterose has the "purest motives" in the sense that he is in it for the money, the power, and the lulz freely admits it to himself and anyone else who bothers asking him.. 

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I'm desperately avoiding spoilers because I just started watching Mr. Robot. Like, just now. The first 5 minutes of the first episode is such a holy shit moment.

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Watch the new behind-the-scenes documentary.  It is fucking aces. 

I was shocked to see Mudge from Lopht Heavy Industries and Dark Tangent talking about the technical aspects of the show because I've met both of those guys at DefCon and HOPE.  Those guys are legit internet boogeymen, but they are really old school. 

Eliot's skills are going to have to evolve to handle new tech if he is going to maintain his street cred.  He is going to have to add mobile device and cloud cracking to his resume in order to stay relevant.

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1 hour ago, J.T. said:

I was shocked to see Mudge from Lopht Heavy Industries and Dark Tangent talking about the technical aspects of the show because I've met both of those guys at DefCon and HOPE.  Those guys are legit internet boogeymen, but they are really old school. 

 

So they actually have advisors?  Because so much of the technical stuff they say on the show is bullshit word salad.  I mean it's not "two people furiously type on one keyboard as they frantically try to stop a hack" bad but still.  And the graphical representation of a virus slowly heading toward a server as they rush to shut it down (episode 1) was fucking garbage.  Data does not travel like a game of Pipe Dream for Windows.

I will give them points for adhering to the very true premise that the majority of hacks are social/human error.  The scene with the chick dropping piles of thumb drives outside the police station was cool.

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I think that Mudge says in the documentary that they did their best to avoid making computer intrusion look like magic and he pointed to War Games as the wellspring of the hacker mystique as well as a continued source of frustration for computer security professionals that got into the industry thinking it was a non-stop thrill ride.

I have my EHC and have broken into a system or two during network intrusion testing and the act of breaking into a computer is about as exciting as watching grass grow and you will rarely come across the times where you are actively trying to stop an intrusion in real-time as Eliot does with the first fsociety hack on Evil Corps.

.

 

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1 hour ago, Technico Support said:

So they actually have advisors?  Because so much of the technical stuff they say on the show is bullshit word salad.  I mean it's not "two people furiously type on one keyboard as they frantically try to stop a hack" bad but still.  And the graphical representation of a virus slowly heading toward a server as they rush to shut it down (episode 1) was fucking garbage.  Data does not travel like a game of Pipe Dream for Windows.

I will give them points for adhering to the very true premise that the majority of hacks are social/human error.  The scene with the chick dropping piles of thumb drives outside the police station was cool.

One of my pet peeves is shows and movies like these showing IP addresses with octets over 255, but I figure that's like all phone numbers in movies having to start with 555.

The social engineering aspects they play up on this show (and Sneakers did a really good job with a lot of that) are an good touch.  It would be dull as hell just watching them sit around analyzing Wireshark data.

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58 minutes ago, HumanChessgame said:

One of my pet peeves is shows and movies like these showing IP addresses with octets over 255, but I figure that's like all phone numbers in movies having to start with 555.

The social engineering aspects they play up on this show (and Sneakers did a really good job with a lot of that) are an good touch.  It would be dull as hell just watching them sit around analyzing Wireshark data.

LOL I noticed the octet thing, too.  Took me right out of the episode for a few minutes.  I had to pause and complain to my wife about it.  It's a wonder she's still around; Mrs. TS is a fucking saint I tell ya.  It's funny you mention the "555" thing because I thought the same thing.

There's a really great self-referential scene where two members of the team are watching "Hackers" and scoffing at its graphical representation of hacking, wondering openly which show or movie will give this generation an unrealistic view of the practice.  They might as well have turned to the camera and winked.

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That is Sam Esmail's dilemma.  He has to try to encapsulate the very things that make hacker counter-culture so interesting to the casual eye while dealing with the fact that their primary activity is about as captivating as eating a raisin.

The price of failure is dramatic and the planning of a good hack can be a boost but the execution, not so much.

It is funny how casually the word "social" is used in this show.  It means two totally different things to hackers and non-hackers.   Eliot cannot relate to people as human beings but as a hacker, he values the very personal things he finds out about them because information is the hacker's currency and it gives you a great deal of influence over them.

The rub being that he has a wealth of information about the people around him, but he really doesn't know them at all.  This came back to bite Eliot on the ass when he took Vera's lack of command of social media to be stupidity and completely dismissed Vera as a common thug, only to find out to his horror what the real Vera was truly capable of and how smart he really was.

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So I finally watched this, and I was...underwhelmed.  Like, it's a good show, but the whole thing just left me cold in the end.  I'll definitely watch the first couple of episodes of season 2 to see where they go from here, but I'm not waiting with bated breath for Wednesday or anything.

I'd compare it to the first season of ORPHAN BLACK, in the sense that, on the merits of the writing alone, it would be a just-pretty-good genre show, but it's elevated by a singular, star-making performance by the lead.  Without Rami Malek's perpetual bug-eye carrying the show, this thing would halt and catch fire.

I'll give Esmail credit, though: he proved much more adept at making TV than most first-time showrunners with no TV experience have lately.  That said, you can definitely tell this was the 1st act of a movie that he stretched out to 10 episodes.  It takes a long time for it go anywhere, and there are a lot of filler b-stories.  Basically everyting with Shayla and Vera could've been cut from the show, and it wouldn't have made a difference in the endgame.   (You get the sense that story existed just because somebody at USA thought there needed to be a love interest and more gunplay and traditional life-or-death stakes on the show.)  I'll be interested to see if that improves now that he's into the meat of whatever story he has in mind.

But that dialogue!  Man, even Nic Pizzolatto thinks Sam could ease up a little.  I guess the fact that he cites THE MATRIX as an influence explains why everyone on this show talks like the The Architect.

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22 hours ago, EVA said:

 Basically everything with Shayla...could've been cut from the show,

You watch your filthy mouth, EVA!

They put up part 1 of the premiere online for a limited time.  It's probably gone now.

Go to the MR. ROBOT twitter page to check or other completely legal avenues.

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That was dizzying.

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On 7/9/2016 at 11:48 PM, EVA said:

Basically everyting with Shayla and Vera could've been cut from the show, and it wouldn't have made a difference in the endgame.

This.  Eliott being broken up over Shayla's death felt so unearned.  They didn't do much at all to establish that kind of closeness before she got fridged.  I mean trunked.

Great point about the padding in the series.  Things like the Angela and her boyfriend subplot dragged forever for very little payoff.  There was zero payoff at all to the bit with his psychologist's boyfriend.  Or to the whole psychologist subplot, really.  And I guarantee you that in the original version, the Dark Army didn't back out of the hack, because that whole thing added like two episodes' worth of content.

I'm right there with you.  I thought it was decent but not amazing.  I'll watch season two hoping for better.  But if season two is just act two of the original screenplay stretched out to build 12 TV episodes, fuuuuuuck.

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Shayla was a top 3 character and I won't hear anything different. Some of you have no soul!

The psychologist subplot is ongoing btw... she is in the premiere.

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Counterpoint: Vera was much more interesting than Shayla, who was a one-dimensional wish fulfillment character with no existence outside her utility to Elliott.

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3 hours ago, Technico Support said:

This.  Eliott being broken up over Shayla's death felt so unearned.  They didn't do much at all to establish that kind of closeness before she got fridged.  I mean trunked.

Eh, the entire premise of the show is that we experience everything through Eliot and he is an unreliable narrator.  There is no surprise that the thing with Shayla feels like it comes out of left field given that everything is filtered through Eliot's emotional wall. 

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I do appreciate that they went out of their way to cast women with interesting faces on this show.  Like, they're all attractive ladies, but none are conventionally "TV pretty."  Joanna Wellick is the closest to an actual bombshell, and even she kinda looks like an alien sometimes.

Speaking of, here's a possibly contentious statement that might put me on an island:  Joanna is great, but Martin Wallstom might be giving one of the worst performances on TV as Tyrell, and I would be happy if he never turns up again.

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