Mr Robot: Hello/Bonsoir Recap Ep 2

Hello friend.
Where were we?
“I want you to be where you belong…here with me.” -Tyrell images-2

The back of Elliott’s head is front and center on the screen, as men walk from behind Tyrell and take their seat at the conference table.  The image forebodes revelations that will be made about the way Elliott’s mind works, later in the season.  As, various men appear to be multiplying from one another around him (Matrix anyone?).  From this initial perspective, Elliott is literally the head of the table.  Once, all the men have taken their seat on the round table, there is a cut to a wide shot.  This image shows Elliott on one end of the table and Tyrell on the other.  There is a pillar that cuts the screen in such a way that Elliott’s seat at Tyrell’s table is being blocked.  So, is there space for Elliott at the table, or does an immovable force separate them from one another?

images-5“I think, I am happy where I am.” -Elliott

During this opening Tyrell provides us with a lot of exposition as he offers Elliott a job at E-Corp.  We learn that since Terrance Colby took the fall for an E-Corp hack (performed by fsociety), Tyrell has been named interim CTO. “In a way it’s kinda…what’s the word in English?  Serendipitous?” describes Tyrell.  He also divulges that E-Corp will be soon ending their partnership with AllSafe, Elliott’s employer, which would be detrimental to the small cyber security company. Normally, exposition dumps bore viewers because it feels excessive.  In this case the information is very necessary considering that the pilot episode ended with Elliott being abducted by Tyrell’s men.  Now we know why Elliott was hand delivered to Tyrell and more about the plot.  After Elliott declines Tyrell’s offer, orchestra music plays as Tyrell turns and walks away.  In the midst of rejection, Tyrell takesimgres a god like position and retreats back to the conference room’s windows.  He looks down at the New York City streets, some thirty, or so floors separating him from the people below.  Meanwhile, Elliott retreats back through the darken hallway from which he came.   

“Didn’t I say if you walked away you were no longer apart of this?” -Mr Robot 

In the second episode, Elliott not only walks away from Tyrell, but he turns his back on fsociety too.  Elliott learns that Mr Robot’s big plans involve killing a lot of innocent people, which crosses a moral line for Elliott. During the closing sequence, he returns to Coney Island to find Mr Robot sitting alone on the railing of a pier. Elliott makes his way towards Mr Robot, as he walks through a group of skaters. There is no immovable object separating Elliott from Mr Robot as he makes his way to reclaim his spot in fsociety.  He literally jumps up and sits right alongside his friend on the pier’s railing.  Both seated high above the sandy beach below.

images“You didn’t commit to the sacred pact you had formed ” -Mr Robot 

In an effort to make amends, Elliott tells Mr Robot about his father’s death.  How he broke his promise that he would keep his father’s illness a secret from his mother.  Sharing this story is a very vulnerable moment for Elliott, whom usually keeps to himself.  Note, Elliott keeps his hood on during this entire scene, while in the opening he had it off.  Hoods are often used to obscure your face from the public, a defense against being seen by people.  We see just how defenseless he is at the pier, as Mr Robot pushes Elliott off the ledge.  Cut to a wide shot and there is one lone, dark figure sitting on the railing.  Where does Elliott belong?  Are we even by his side anymore?

By Sarah Belmont
Featured Writer
@sjbelmont

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2.31 – Returning shows and technical difficulties

Send comments or questions to SceneNNerd@gmail.com to have them read on the show! On today’s show Pete, Sarah and Matt welcome back Amy and Lauren from The Flash Podcast and Assembly of Geeks and Jon G from Friday Night Fandom. Pete makes HUGE announcement then runs down what’s new in theaters and on Blu ray. Lauren does her best Casey impression for the “Entertainment Whatever” and the gang tackles RETURNING fall shows. It’s crazy, a bit laggy, but still somewhat entertaining. It’s Scene N Nerd!

 

Fall Film Preview: Our Boys & Joy

imgresBurnt
“Maybe I just wanted it really badly, that when I got it, I didn’t know how to hold on to it…” –Adam Jones

Bradley Cooper returns to the kitchen in his latest film, Burnt, about the redemption of talented Chef Adam Jones.  A man once on top of his game, loses everything due to his drug addiction, now he fights for both redemption and that elusive third Michelin star. This film reunites Cooper with his American Sniper co-star Sienna Miller, who plays Helene, his sous chef in the movie. Both Cooper and Miller have to share their screen time with all of the food porn shots, that the trailer promises will be included in the film.

imagesCooper has been nominated for an Academy Award for the past three years and in 2015 he may receive his fourth nomination. If not, for Burnt, then maybe for his performance alongside Jennifer Lawrence in David O. Russell’s latest film titled Joy. The film chronicles Joy’s (Lawrence) rise to become the founder and matriarch of a business dynasty. Cooper plays an executive at the home shopping network who helps Joy sell her products.  At least, this year, Cooper has doubled his chances to receive his fourth consecutive nomination. Burnt will hit theaters on October 23rd, 2015, while Joy is set to be released on December 25th, 2015.

To watch the Burnt trailer click here
To watch the Joy trailer click here

Legend
“Me and my brother, we’re going to rule London.” –Ronnie Krayimgres-1

Director Brian Helegland depicts the glamorous, but at times ultra violent London underground scene in the 1960s. Tom Hardy stars as two of the most notorious criminals in British history, identical twins Reggie and Ronnie Kray.   Yes, we get twice the Tom Hardy for the price of one admission ticket. Emily Browning (Sucker Punch) co-stars as Reggie Kray’s wife, Frances “Frankie” Shea, and narrates the entire film.   The love affair between Frankie and Reggie is used as a device to contrast the twins from one another. Audience members should sympathize with Reggie as he deals with his brother’s insanity, even though by doing so the film treads more towards fiction than fact.

imgres-2Based on the trailer, the movie seems to reference American gangster films such as Goodfellas and Mean Streets, under the guise of a cockney accent. In addition the film possesses a quirky, offbeat, dark comedy tonal feel as seen in the cult-classic Snatch. Now the real question is if Tom Hardy will receive critical acclaim and recognition for both roles come award season. We have seen him as the charming, gentleman, con-artist Eames in Inception; and recently as the psychotic, offbeat, Jewish gangster, Alfie Solomons, on Netflix’s Peaky Blinders season two. Now we are able to see him play both character types simultaneously, with the cockney accents, this could be legendary.

In limited release on November 20th, 2015
To watch the trailer click here

The Revenant
“I aign’t afraid to die anymore…I done it already.” –Hugh Glassimages-2

Revenant refers to someone who has returned from the dead. Hugh Glass (Leonardo Dicaprio) is a 19th century frontiersman; left for dead, by fellow hunters and fur trappers, after a brutal bear attack. Just, when we thought we had seen Leonardo Dicaprio play everything, he brings us his portrayal as Hugh Glass; a fighter, survivor, but most importantly a quieter man in comparison to Dicaprio’s previous roles. The film follows Glass’ three hundred mile trek for vengeance across Perkins County (now South Dakota). Throughout his journey Glass deals with the grief of being betrayed by his best friend, John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy). Glass’ thirst for revenge fuels his will to survive against all odds.

The is Academy Award winning director Alejandro G. Inarritu’s follow up to last images-1year’s best picture winner, Birdman. Inarritu’s determination to truly capture the harsh reality of Glass’ survival story, lead his cast and crew to some of the most remote places to shoot in the Canadian interior. In the trailer we begin to understand Inarritu’s vision to tell an epic adventure story through the perspective of one man’s isolation. There is a magnetic mixture between quiet tension and abrupt action in the trailer. I don’t want to jinx it, but I really hope that all Leo needed to do was return from the dead, to finally receive an oscar.

In theaters on December 25th, 2015
To watch the trailer click here

By Sarah Belmont
Featured Writer
@sjbelmont

Mr Robot the Finale & the Fool

Hello friend.

Did you watch the finale?

Here is what I saw.

Mr Robot’s season one finale is aptly titled, zer0-day.avi, a reference to when an undisclosed and uncorrected application threatens a computer system. The vulnerability within the computer’s software can be exploited and adversely affect by additional computers and imgresother networks.

The finale’s opening scene took us back to where we began, with Elliott’s take down of Michael Hansen, I mean Lenny. Krista meets her former beau at a restaurant, where Michael attempts to talk Krista into providing information for him to use against Elliott. “This kid should not be allowed to do what he did,” explains Michael. Their conversation continues and then takes a turn after Michael discloses that all Elliott wanted was for him to leave Krista alone. The nobility behind Elliott’s action, no matter his means, allows him to remain a hero in her eyes. The Mr Robot title sequence appears on screeimages-2n right after Michael has connected Elliott to the global hack currently being covered by all the major news networks.   Now that Elliott has decided to play hero for the rest of the world, is he still a noble knight, or the court jester? The fool…the madman.

“Where am I? Seriously, what do you remember? Wait, I don’t even trust you.”-Elliott

Elliott is a madman, as he wakes up in Tyrell’s abandoned car all alone. He has no memory of how he got there, or how many days he has been “asleep” for, or where Tyrell is at the moment. While Elliott tries to remembeimages-3r, in the background on a wall there is a graffiti mural of a man in a suit completing the heart in a I heart NY logo. The image is very reminiscent of a ringleader at a circus, one who is putting on a glorious show for the audience. Elliott heads to E-Corp, determined to find Tyrell, and he finds their offices in utter chaos, thanks to the fsociety hack.  Circus music begins to play as Elliott wonders around the corridors, as he narrates each step of their master plan. Therefore alluding to the fact that he is the ringleader behind this new world…behind this circus.

image“Come out…I need to know what happened…Come out…I’m here waiting for you.”- Elliott

Elliott’s episode arc through most of the finale, is very similar to his arc in episode six-titled, v1ew-S0urce.flv. In that episode he plays a “zero-sum game” with Vera, and then discovers Shayla’s dead body, in the trunk, at the end.  In retrospect Elliott knew the whole time that both of them were not going to make it out alive. Now in this episode all signs suggest that Elliott killed Tyrell, unfortunately we will have to wait until next season to know for sure. Note, that when Elliott returns to Tyrell’s abandoned car, he checks the trunk first. Elliott is the ringleader, who can’t seem to remember what he did prior to the hack.  In the previous episode Elliott acknowledges that he is Mr Robotimgres-1,  admitting to having dissociative identity disorder. For people with this condition when they can’t remember previous events in their lives, it indicates that a different personality was in control during the time that they have forgotten.  Mr. Robot finally appears just as  Elliott is about to turn himself in to the officials for the hack. He explains to Elliott that they both know where Tyrell is, “So do you… you forget kiddo, I am you.”  Then in an epic scene where the camera breaks from Elliott’s narrative perspective, for a brief moment, it shows him up against a wall, while choking himself, with his own hand. Yes, if this scene is an indication of anything, it’s that to the outside world Elliott is a madman…a fool.

“I am only supposed to be your prophet. You’re supposed to be my God.”-  Mr. Robot

imagesNow rewind back to the pilot, remember the scene after Elliott finds out that, with his help, fsociety has taken down E-Corp CTO Terrence Colby? He runs out into the middle of Time-Square and amongst a sea of people raises his hands in victory. Fast forward to the finale; fsociety has won and we find Elliott being carried by Mr. Robot, amongst a sea of people wearing fsociety masks, in Time Square.  Mr. Robot not only was successful in making fsociety achieve their goal, but allowed Elliott not to be alone in the world anymore. Throughout the episode we see frequent cuts to TV screens, as reporters cover the fsociety hack and it’s worldwide ramifications.  Whileimages-1, Elliott searches for Tyrell he encounters various people wearing the fsociety face mask on the New York City streets. The two argue once again, and Mr. Robot gives a great monologue about the translucent definition of reality in the 21st century.  His angry rant is reminiscent of Elliott’s subconscious, one that is about everything wrong in the world, back in the pilot episode.  By creating Mr. Robot and creating us, Elliott dissociates himself from his actions against fsociety.  Now that in reality society is just as angry as Elliott he finds himself even more unstable then before, “I want to be alone…I nimgreseed to be alone,” states Elliott as he closes his eyes to the outside world.

“Whoever is behind this, they’re just people…like you…and me…except of course, I have the full weight of the world’s biggest conglomerate behind me…you’ll come to realize that when you have that…matters like this…tend to crack.” –Philip Price

The only thing that Elliott cannot separate himself from is Mr. Robot.  Now aware of his own mental state, he allows his prophet to tell him what to do next. Elliott lifts up the hood of his black sweatshirt, symbolic that his alter ego has taken control, and returns home to his humble fortress.  The finale concludes with Elliott opening his door to an unknown person.  During the season finale, Elliott may have tentatively cracked under the pressure of being the ringleader behind fsociety and their global hack; Elliott may be a mad man but he is “no more mad than” Feste, the fool in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.

imgres-1SceneNNerd will continue to discuss Mr. Robot’s season finale during our next podcast episode.  Go to iTunes to rate and subscribe.  Check out our podcast episode called Hanging with Mr Robot for discussion about the season overall. 

Goodbye friend.

See you for season two.  

By Sarah Belmont
Featured Writer
@sjbelmont

Mr Robot Decrypted S1: Part II

Hello friend.

“Please tell me that you’re seeing this too…”-Elliott (1×01)

There are imagestwo water paintings hanging up outside of Krista’s office.  The one on the left features a family heading into an old farmhouse, with one figure remaining behind, by the fence.  The one on the right features the same family, now behind the farm house playing together in the fields.  The fourth figure does not appear in the painting on the right, he only appears in the other one. The first time that we see these paintings is in episode two, right after Elliott decides that Vera, “can’t be allowed to exist anymore.” Then we observe his therapy session with Krista, where they discuss the “allusion of control.” Elliott is only comfortable when he feels in control. He assumes power by hacking into the personal lives of others online, and then constructs boundaries within his personal relationships. Elliott would choose to remain behind, by the fence, while his family goes to play in the fields.  That’s an easy choice for him, the hard ones come when others are involved.  Adding Shayla to the equation made Elliott force his hand in terms of Vera. But did he make a decision, or was the choice already “pre-paid” for him a long time ago?

“Intentions are irrelevant, they don’t drive us, daemons do.”-Elliott (1×3)

imageThe paintings can be see again, in the background as Krista lets Elliott into her office at the end of episode seven. Unfortunately, moments later Krista discovers that by having Elliott as a patient, she’s letting him into her entire life. Beneath the bank statements, online site profiles, pornography, beneath everything; Elliott finds their one honest connection; they are just two lonely people in the world. “I want out of this loneliness, just like you, is that what you wanted to hear?” cries Elliott in episode seven.  After the end of the title sequence during episode eight, we see Elliott facing the paintings again, as his monologue begins, “But you have to admit, she’s just like everyone else, too afraid to peek over their walls for fear of what they might see.” The camera zooms in on the lone figure standing by the fence.

When Shayla was still alive he could of possibly wanted to join the others and play behind the farmhouse.  Now that she is dead, he wants to remain behind while the others go ahead without him.  He wants to remain by the fence to control who comes in and who leaves.  Again, is it Elliott’s choice, or did a “daemon” already make it for him?  Is he in control, or under the false allusion imageof control?

“People who are violent get that way, because they can’t communicate.” –Mr Robot (1×03)

During the third episode’s opening sequence we see Tyrell Wellick come undone, and still remains in control. Now that Terrance Colby has been removed from the situation, Tyrell has the opportunity to become the youngest CTO that E-Corp has ever seen. Then Philip Price awkwardly turns him down, because Scott Knowles has taken the position, right out from under him. Instead of causing a scene at the office, Tyrell takes his anger to the street, literally. He exchanges money with a homeless man, and they agree to fight one another. Tyrell retains control as he stripes away pieces of his business attire; his watch, sports coat, tie, and undoes the top buttons on his dress shirt. Then he pulls out a pair of surgical gloves, not boxing gloves, or a knuckle brace to wear during the fight…but surgical gloves. Tyrell is a man of discipline, order, cleanliness, and sustainability. Therefore he is a man who needs to keep his imagehands clean; of dirt, germs, blood, but mostly importantly clean from failure.

Tyrell is without his control, his surgical gloves, while on the rooftop with Sharon Knowles during episode seven. “Scott plans on firing you, and you are clinging on to any chance you can get…you seem desperate,” explains Sharon moments before Tyrell chokes her to death. Yes, in the face of failure Tyrell is desperate for control. In one moment of pure impulse Tyrell takes the life of another, which simultaneously sends his own life into a tailspin. During the next two episodes Tyrell loses both his job and family to his mistake, his failure.  Again, did Tyrell decide to take the life of Sharon Knowles, or did the impulse stem from the “allusion of control,”pre-paid for” by a “daemon”?

“The lock pick, every hacker’s favorite sport.  The perfect system to crack mostly, because unlike virtual systems, when you break it, you can see it…hear it…feel it.”-Elliott (1×02)

“I don’t know what you’re master plan is, but I need to…and you’re going to tell me,” Tyrell calmly says to Elliott as he slips on his pair of surgical gloves. Instead of sharing the same guilt that Elliott felt for having a hand in Shayla’s death, Tyrell felt a moment of “pure power,”while strangling Sharon.  In this scene Tyrell posters and asserts his dominance as he describes how it felt to murder someone…by his own two hands.  Cut to Elliott letting him into the fsociety arcade.  Why would Eimgres-1lliott let in someone who diametrically opposes him?  If in the wake of Shayla’s death, Elliott chose to stay behind and be the gatekeeper, why open it for Tyrell?  Sam Esmail is the real “daemon” threatening to take down Elliott’s construction of reality. After viewing episode ten we will have completed one “perfect” maze friend.  Will you be ready for the next one?

Writer’s note:  A daemon is a computer program that runs in the background, without interference from the user in control.

 By Sarah Belmont
Featured Writer
@sjbelmont

2.27 – Sudden Silkiness

Send your questions or comments to SceneNNerd@gmail.com or on Twitter @SceneNNerd to have them read on the show. On today’s show Pete and Casey are joined by Andy B of The Flash Podcast. First, Pete gives us the new movies out in theaters and on DVD, Casey frolics through this week’s Entertainment news (Jon Stewart, Fantastic 4 Trailer, One Direction), and Andy gives his thoughts on the next season of The Flash as well as “The Death of Superman Lives” documentary. Then on TV Talk, Pete and Casey discuss some deaths on Mr. Robot and try to talk about the Halt and Catch Fire finale. Baby, you light up my world like nobody else, it’s an all new Scene ‘N Nerd!

 

2.24 – Stories from Comic Con

Talk to us at SceneNNerd@gmail.com or @SceneNNerd on Twitter to have your questions or comments read on the show! Today Pete and Matt are back while Casey is out on vacation. The guys are joined by Rose Moore ofMoviepilot.com, Lauren Galloway from Assembly of Geeks, The Flash Podcast and EW Community and Lily Miranda from @WardsWarriors to share all their crazy stories from Comic Con. They also share their thoughts on the latest trailers from Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad and talk about how X-Men: Age of Apocalypse is shaping up. They’re back, they’re nerdy and they’re trying very hard to get over those post Comic Con blues. This is Scene N Nerd!