Mr. Robot Eps3.1_undo.gz Review
Mr. Robot: Season 3, Episode 2: Eps3.1_undo.gz cleverly documents Elliot’s (Rami Malek) efforts to integrate himself back into polite society after renouncing his economy-wrecking hacktivism.
One of the lasting sources of entertainment from the show has been Elliot’s attempts to make sense of the eccentricities of everyday life, and Wednesday night’s episode being no exception. With Mr. Robot (Christian Slater) seemingly put to rest at last, Elliot gets a job at E Corp and tries to “undo” the damage he did.
Although he seems earnest in his desire to patch things back together, the program drips with the cynicism of past seasons in its portrayal of his “normal” life. Elliot rides on a subway filled with emoji-masked passengers and his superiors cut short his business presentations because of such pressing matters as the Goo Goo Dolls getting back together for a concert in the city. It’s amusing to see any society and its excesses skewered so skillfully, but it’s also disheartening knowing that the society in question is the one we inhabit. It’s even more unsettling when we realize the criticism comes from a mentally-ill cyberterrorist who, for all his faults and issues, has an uncanny ability to cut through the BS and identify the real problems facing modern man.
Boasting some excellent camerawork, the episode has two scenes that stand-out on a technical level. The first is the killing of Joanna Wellick (Stephanie Corneliussen) by a jilted Cody (Chris Conroy), capturing the attack on first her bodyguard, Mr. Sutherland (Jeremy Holm), and then her in a single shot that tracks back and forth wherever the action goes. The camera also captures Cody’s death when the wounded Sutherland shoots him before rising and coming to rest on Joanna’s wailing baby. It’s a lot of ground to cover in just one shot, and it’s all done to the accompaniment of Roxette’s “Listen To Your Heart”.
The other standout shot occurs towards the end of the show, when Krista (Gloria Reuben) tries to talk to Mr. Robot. Briefly humoring her, Elliot’s alter ego decides that he doesn’t like where the conversation is going. Walking right up to her chair, he leans in and coldly tells her, “I’m done talking with you.” Shot from the side of the two actors, only the faintest of lights illuminates Krista’s face while Mr. Robot is shrouded completely in shadow, giving him the appearance of an apparition ready to spirit her away at any moment. The moment would undoubtedly be tense on its own, but the framing and lighting make it one of the most chilling moments in the entire history of Mr. Robot.
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