Sunday, December 18, 2016

I Saw This!! What I Have Been Watching (PT D.2)

Pt. ABC, D.1 can be found there.

I Saw This (double exclamation point) is our feature wherein Graig or David attempt to write about a bunch of stuff they watched some time ago and meant to write about but just never got around to doing so. But we can't not write cuz that would be bad, very bad.  Y'know, red horny demon possession, bad.

Just to round out the pile, I am going to shoe horn in a show I am currently watching. So, this edition, we get a completed season (and series), a dropped show (but likely to be binge watched) and a nearly done season.

Meh; four (series) seasons completed.

Mr Robot S2, 2016, USA Network -- download

Speaking of technology rampant, from the more metaphysical and speculative idea of what could happen, to a more grounded, if darker view on unfettered tech use.

Mr. Robot continues Eliot's descent into madness. Descent? More like riding the wave.

When we last left our young hero and his imaginary dad, Mr Robot, they were enacting their economically catastrophic plan. But of course, wiping out (records of) debt hasn't destroyed Evil Corp nor freed the serfs from debt slavery. In fact its fucking things up royally. Cash has become king and almost everyone, the 98% included, has had their bank accounts frozen.

I would have preferred if the show had expanded its purview beyond NYC so we could see how things are going in the rest of the US, and maybe across the border, but no we wander the streets of the city seeing restaurants that only take cash, people are jobless and pissed off and the TV never stops talking about it. But of course, the suits just keep on suiting. They will always have the money no matter how militaristic Elliot and his sister get.

Elliot spends much of the season desperate to maintain a routine while being forced into a seemingly routine tech support role for a gangster. This gangster, friendly and attentive to Elliots peculiarities is an analog for that guy who ran the Darkweb ebay site, you know, the one that sold weed and hitmen. Meanwhile his sister and her friends are both trying to plan what happens next while absolutely petrified about getting caught. Seriously, with the damage they have done they will end up in a deep dark concrete room, even if you ignore that they have an Arab girl working with them. And Angela, poor lost angry Angela who also wants to be wrapped up in the 2% world, she is being simultaneously courted and manipulated by Evil Corp's CEO. She knows it but she cannot escape, because only within them will she unveil what they did her home town. And her mother, and Elliot's dad.

This was a season better left to binge watching. The individual episodes are enigmatic and frustrating, yes even more so than season one was. And unfortunately, Sam Esmail is now required to have a secret behind what goes on for most of the season. Well, a secret that like in the first season, is pretty telegraphed and not entirely well explained, once the reveal hits.

After the reveal, we return to Elliot trying to find out what happened to his non-F Society cohort, Tyrell. Of course, Tyrell is not dead and he also has further plans for the destruction of Evil Corp and the world's wealth. Or is he? Of course, by now we cannot accept anything on the screen as being quite what it is. Really, this season leaves Elliot more as a side character, while focusing on the fallout and the investigation into F Society. Really, the best bits are about the socially crippled FBI agent Dom DiPierro and her desperate need to work this all out, so she will not have to return home where she only has masturbating and lonely conversations with her Amazon Siri clone, Alexa.

As I said, the season is best watched as a whole, but unfortunately it doesn't pull together at the end. There is no single moment it is moving towards and really feels more like one of those mid-season endings that plague television now. Seriously, its annoying how many shows have two Season Enders these days.