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Handshake: ‘Mr. Robot' Season 2, Episode 7

Our recap and review

August 19, 2016

By Katherine Kozelski

Bonsoir, TEKsavvy blog readers. Before we start our recap, keep in mind that our Mr. Robot posts will be chock full of spoilers, so don’t read ahead unless you’re all caught up!

In a drastic change from last week’s Mr. Robot sitcom, Elliot finally reveals the truth about what he’s been up to since last season, putting a number of conspiracy theories to rest. It turns out Elliot isn’t in a mental institution as many fans thought; rather, he's in jail. And what about all of the new characters? Leon, who many of us thought was another figment of Elliot’s imagination, is another inmate, his “mother” is actually a prison guard, and Ray is the warden. All those intense kitchen table conversations with his therapist, Angela and Darlene happened during visiting hours.

Beyond the barriers of the prison walls and Elliot’s mind, a lot is going on, especially for Dark Angela. With the Dom and the FBI on her tail, Angela decides to make another huge power move at E Corp. She gets the class action participants to drop the contingency in their lawsuit, and her efforts don’t go unnoticed by Mr. Price. With this win in her back pocket, she asks to be transferred to the risk and compliance division to gain access to all of E Corp’s classified files. This move will not only secure her position at E Corp, but will also prove her worth to fsociety. Don’t underestimate the powers of Dark Angela.

Prior to revealing the truth about where he’s been all season and who everyone is, Elliot continues to help Ray with his website. And just as we suspected, he remains true to himself by setting Ray up. With a few little SEO tricks, Elliot made Ray’s dark website easy enough for the FBI to find with one Google search.

It turns out Ray isn’t as evil as we thought. He got wrapped up in the Dark Web prior to his wife’s death, but once he actually started to make money it spiraled out of control. As the FBI surrounds Ray’s office, Elliot and Ray play one last game of chess, and Ray thanks Elliot for turning him in; it was time for the game to end.

But not everyone is happy about the site being shut down. Later in the episode, Elliot is jumped by a group of Ray’s vendors. Just as they are about to assault Elliot, Leon comes to the rescue and kills every last one of them. While Elliot is in shock from what just happened, Leon turns to him and says, “When you see Whiterose, make sure you said I did good.” That’s right, Leon works for the Dark Army.

As Elliot continues to accept his relationship with Mr. Robot, Mr. Robot finally gives Elliot what he’s wanted all along: an answer about what happened that fateful night with Tyrell. Mr. Robot tells Elliot that Tyrell had to go because he was a loose cannon who couldn’t be trusted. But can we trust that Mr. Robot is telling Elliot the truth? Hmm…

Questions answered and questions asked

Kelly: OK, let's start with the end...vindication at last!!!! We were waffling between whether Elliot was in prison or some sort of mental facility, and now we know. I've seen some headlines suggesting the site jumped the shark by employing an unreliable narrator who was too unbelievable, but I think they telegraphed this just right. It was very satisfying. Now we just need to figure out what he's been charged with (obviously, not the 5/9 hack).

Katherine: Mind. Blown. In true Sam Esmail fashion, he gives you just what you’ve been waiting for all season—an answer to where Elliot’s been—and then he leaves you there questioning everything. So if Elliot is about to get out of prison soon, his crime couldn’t have been that serious, right?

Regan: We finally get some answers. We all had our theories based on the structured living, basketball games, dinner and, of course, Ray. But this answer doesn’t close out the Ray situation. Was Ray his caseworker in prison, was Elliot really helping him with the Dark Web, did the other inmates really lose their Bitcoins through Elliot’s actions? I’m glad we finally can confirm Leon is a real person, not a personality.

Cam: I like that we’re finally able to breathe after Elliot exposes where he’s been the whole time. I think most viewers thought he was in a mental hospital or jail. But, how did he get there? What are we missing (besides everything)? Is what we are hearing and seeing real?

David: After watching this week’s episode, I experienced a plethora of emotions that left me emotional drained. Let’s start with confusion. We have no clue why Elliot is in jail and who Ray is in the jail. Is Elliot going to be released early because he helped bust Ray or because Whiterose has plans for him? If it is in fact Whiterose’s doing, will Elliot and the Whiterose team up for world domination? Or will Elliot regain his senses and get a 9-5 gig in the big city? I’m also wondering if Elliot’s hacker crew knew he was in jail, because in previous episodes they keet asking for him. I have to assume that when Darlene and Gideon came to visit Elliot, it was a jail house visit so if they knew, why didn’t everyone else? Let’s move to excitement.

Dark Angela skates on thin ice

Regan: Angela, oh Angela. She’s coming off quite strong and it’s putting her fellow E Corp people on high alert. I’m curious how Mr. Price and Angela’s relationship plays out. Is he using her, is she using him, does he have some sort of attraction to her, or is he generally interested in her as a person, or maybe a friend? Time will tell, I suppose. I also have to note her aggressiveness toward her dad. It seems he’s put what happened to his wife (Angela’s mom) behind him and is just trying to get on with his life.

Kelly: Thin ice indeed. From Dom being hot on her trail, to her torched relationship with her dad, and now a bad work situation, her power mantras are letting her down. But Price seems to want to keep her around...what's his end game?

David: I’m excited to see Angela start to come to grips with who she is and want she wants. Now that she’s in a new position, will she wield her power over Phillip and find the answers she’s looking for, or will Agent Dom figure out what’s she’s been up to and turn her into a double agent? I see big things happening with this arc.

Mr. Robot conspiracies and conclusions

Kelly: Joanna's boy toy situation is getting stranger. And are we sure Tyrell is dead? Handshake or not, I still don't trust Elliott / Mr. Robot entirely.

Katherine: He’s definitely not dead. Whatever happened between Elliot and Tyrell on the night of the 5/9 attacks is definitely why Elliot’s in jail, but what could it be? Honestly, I’m kind of bored with the Joanna storyline; she needs to up the creep and criminal factors. If she’s trying to divorce Tyrell, then she knows he’s still alive, so maybe he’ll come back next episode.

Cam: The fourth wall is being smashed with the various television and online advertising add-ons. I'm not sure if commercials are the real thing or a devious Esmail brainchild. His ability to fully integrate viewers into his show is uncanny...maybe unprecedented.

David: The final aspect of Mr. Robot that’s fueling my mind grapes is the sensory overload that is Mr. Robot. The coordination of the music, cinematography, quick cuts and jarring scenery makes you wonder if this entire season will end up being some sort of surreal experiment—one of Elliot’s dreams. In fact, I may be having a dream as I write this review.

Follow us next week as the theories continue and Sam Esmail’s complex web of characters confuses us all. Have any theories of your own or want to join us in conversation? Comment below.

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Master Slave: ‘Mr. Robot' Season 2, Episode 6

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