The eighth and ninth episode of Mr. Robot‘s first season were so exciting and revelatory that I had no idea how the finale would top it. It turns out that Mr. Robot didn’t know either and basically skipped over all the exciting bits and started right in the aftermath. While on paper that sounds incredibly frustrating and lazy, Mr. Robot worked it to perfection.
Mr. Robot‘s season finale begins a few days after the penultimate episode. FSociety has started their master plan and the world is beginning to fall apart, so it can be rebuilt anew. The only problem is that Elliot has no memory of doing any plan or even what is going on in the world. This was the perfect finale for this weird and cerebral show. Mr. Robot has always been about Elliot’s journey and mental state. It was perfect choice for the finale to cut out all the hacking and executions of plans and just have Elliot trying to decipher the fallout.
Brave New World and Wellick Hunting
Elliot wakes up in a parked car and doesn’t remember how he got there or really anything from the past few days. The only thing he knows is that car he is in belongs to Tyrell. Elliot is confused and goes to the FSociety arcade. Darlene pulls him aside and asks him where he has been hiding. Darlene also tells Elliot that apparently he began to executing FSociety’s grand plan. The hacker group is growing in popularity and success as they hack systems across the world. This is all brand new information to Elliot and he realizes he has to find Tyrell.
Elliot is distraught as he absorbs the truth of what FSociety, (and he), has done. The world as he knew it is beginning to crumble. Third world countries are in upheaval as their whole infrastructure and information network has been hacked. America and other first world nations do a better job hiding it, but they are equally in disrepair.
Elliot goes to Evil Corp headquarters to find Tyrell, but of course, Tyrell has been fired and is no longer there. Apparently, when they were destroying the world together, Tyrell failed to mention his new employment status to Elliot. While at Evil Corp, the masked mascot of FSociety releases a new video. Elliot watches as the video announces that by the end of the day when the stock market bell rings, Evil Corp will be over. Everyone will be free, but Elliot looks less than thrilled. Though maybe that’s because he recognizes the eyes of the masked mascot as his own and he has no recollection of recording the video.
Elliot goes to Tyrell’s home and runs into his terrifying but fascinating wife, Joanna. Joanna begins fishing for information about Tyrell. She hasn’t seen Tyrell since she told him he needed to fix his messes immediately if he still wanted to be her husband. Elliot quickly realizes he is out of his depth. He tells Joanna that his name is Ollie and quickly leaves.
All Hail Queen Angela
Angela has accepted a job at Evil Corp in the PR department. She is prepping the EVP of Evil Corp, James Plouffe, for a televised interview. Plouffe snaps at her and his emotional fragility gets even worse in front of the camera. While he tries to maintain the company line that everything is fine, he falls apart under harsh questioning. Plouffe tells the camera that the life they knew is over. He is personally ruined. He then takes a handgun out of his bag and commits suicide on live TV.
The CEO of Evil Corp, Mr. Price, comes out to talk to Angela in a lobby afterwards. Price comes across as caring and understanding but then invites her to a press conference that he is holding later. Angela tells him that she can’t come, so Price gives her money to buy new shoes. Her current ones are stained with Plouffe’s blood and according to Price they are “no good.”
In a daze, Angela goes to the shoe store. While she is there, the clerk realizes who she is and asks her why her shoes are stained red. He begins to lecture and scold Angela for being so cold and working for such a terrible company. Angela tries to appeal to the man, but he won’t listen. So instead, Angela embraces her evil role, she fights back against the clerk and intimidates him. Then cold and awesomely, she tells the man, she’ll see the Prada ones next. This is how a super-villain is born people and I couldn’t be more happy.
Stop Hitting Yourself
Elliot realizes that the only way he’s going to figure what happened to Tyrell is if he talks to Mr. Robot. He tries to get Mr. Robot to “come out” by yelling at for him to show up. When that doesn’t work Elliot says he has to force Mr. Robot’s hand. Elliot goes to an internet cafe and uses the phone to turn himself into the police. It’s then that Mr. Robot appears. While still in public, Elliot tries to interrogate Mr. Robot. In actuality, Elliot is shown choking himself.
Anyhoo, Mr. Robot tells Elliot that he already knows because they are the same person. When Elliot disagrees, Mr. Robot taunts someone in the cafe. The man punches Mr. Robot, but of course, it’s Elliot who ends up with a black eye and on the ground. Mr. Robot stands over Elliot’s semi-consciousness body and tells him that he is losing it. Mr. Robot grabs Elliot and whisks him off the floor.
Angela ends up going to Price’s press conference. She talks to Price before the event begins and asks him why he is so positively chipper with the world ending. Price tells Angela that FSociety are just people, not some supernatural bogeymen. They’re human and can be defeated.
Just when Price is starting to come off as charming and affable guy, the switch flips. Angela notices a picture of Plouffe in the room. Price tells her, that in a way he’s glad Plouffe is dead. The world and even his family are better off without the man. The press conference is beginning though and Price’s rant is cut short. Price stands up begins with a moment of silence for their “dearly departed” friend James Plouffe.
Mr. Robot takes Elliot to Times Square and goes on a huge metaphysical and existential rant. The world is evil, we’re all puppets of consumerism, blah, blah, blah. You know the drill. Just when the speech is reaching its zenith of pretentiousness, Elliot has had enough. Elliot wants to be alone, so he imagines the incredibly busy Time Square as empty.
He is still not rid of Mr. Robot though. The figment of Elliot’s father appears on the big screen. He persuades Elliot that they are one and the same. Elliot will never be free of Mr. Robot, so he should just embrace the persona. Mr. Robot finally manages to convince Elliot that he should enjoy the fruits of his labor. Elliot goes home and watches his computer screen covering the news of FSociety’s success. There is finally a smile on his face. There is a knock at the door. Elliot goes to answer it and that’s the end of season. Kind of.
I mean, the credits roll and everything, but there is an extra post-credits scene. In a opulent manor that is basically everything FSociety stands against, Price is sitting in the middle of a fancy party. An unseen man enters and begins to talk to Price about the recent struggles. Price says that he knows who is responsible and he will make him pay. The camera pans over to Price’s cohort to reveal the leader of the Dark Army, the Whiterose.
It’s a big moment and everything, but since I hate post-credit scenes on principal, let’s just go back to the main episode.
Mr. Robot airs Wednesdays at 10pm on USA
(Image courtesy of USA)