Tuesday, September 29, 2015

TV Tuesday - Mr. Robot

Last week, I introduced a new feature, TV Tuesday! While I have been so severely crashed this past month, I have watched a LOT of TV, so I thought I'd add TV reviews to the blog, in addition to the movies reviews I run on Mondays. I figured plenty of other ME/CFS patients probably enjoy watching TV, too. What else are we going to do while stuck on the couch??

This week, I am highlighting a new show that premiered this summer, Mr. Robot. Although its first season is over, all of the episodes are still available free On Demand or on the USA Network website. This is one of the few shows that my husband and I watched with our 21-year old college son this summer - he usually comes home once a week, and the three of us enjoy watching favorite TV shows together (our younger son doesn't have much interest in TV!)

Mr. Robot is a twisty and suspenseful show about computer hackers and conspiracies. Elliot, played beautifully and cryptically by Rami Malek, is a socially anxious computer programmer who works for a computer security firm. His childhood friend Angela works alongside him and is one of the few people that Elliot can comfortably interact with. Elliot is contacted by a mysterious anarchist hacker organization, headed by a man known only as Mr. Robot, played by Christian Slater. Mr. Robot wants Elliot to join his team, and although Elliot has some misgivings and questions, he gets involved with them because he agrees with their conspiracy goals - to bring down the ever-present E-Corp, known by Elliot and throughout the show as Evil Corp. They represent all the paranoia Elliot feels about the Big Brother-type world we live in, and they are also responsible for the death of Elliot's father and Angela's mother. Carly Chaikin, who we loved in Suburgatory, also co-stars as one of the other hackers working for Mr. Robot. In each episode, the plans to bring down Evil Corp progress, all while Elliot tries to keep up appearances in his day job and maintain his friendship with Angela. Through it all, we also see Elliot's weekly mandatory meetings with a therapist, though we don't know why.

The show is filmed in a jerky, realistic way in New York City, almost as if from a handheld camera. Elliot narrates the show in a voice-over in which he talks directly to the audience. This approach and the cinematography add to the jumpy, paranoid feel of the story. All in all, it feels more like a movie than a typical TV show, and all three of us have been hooked right from the start. We still have a couple of episodes left to watch, so no spoilers, please! We've already been blown away by some major plot twists that we never saw coming, and we can't wait to see how the season ends.

If you've seen Mr. Robot, what did you think?

What are your favorite TV shows now?

Here's a short preview of Mr. Robot:


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